5

He was seen [laying or lying] down near the window.

Which is it? Laying is usually used with an object.

-1

He was seen laying down near the window.

You can use laying here as present tense, if he was seen in the process getting on the bed when the observation (He was seen) was made.

He was seen lying down near the window.

He was already on the bed when the observation (He was seen) was made.

|improve this answer|||||
  • This doesn't seem right to me. "To lay" is transitive. The only sense I can make of "laying down near the window" involves duck feathers. – Dawood ibn Kareem Jul 27 '16 at 1:57
  • Well I would say non-standard but not wrong. lay "'lay down' 4. Nonstandard To lie down." – user3169 Jul 27 '16 at 2:34
8

if you treat lay as the past tense of lie, then lying should not be used. The word lay itself means to put something down, so using lay this way is not correct.

the correct one is "He was seen lying down near the window."

|improve this answer|||||
  • 5
    Note that even native speakers often get this pair of words confused. – 200_success Oct 28 '15 at 3:03
  • Yep, this is very common. – Nihilist_Frost Oct 28 '15 at 3:11

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.