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I may be the last one, but I do indeed still use "lie" and "lay" correctly, so as not to hurt their feelings. In case any English learner wants to know:
Lie, lay, have lain. Intransitive (taking no object)
I lie down. Yesterday I lay down. I have lain awake for hours (wondering why people confuse "lie" and "lay.")
Lay, laid, have laid. Transitive (taking a direct object)
Lay the cards on the table, please. I already laid them there. I have laid the cards there every day for a week.
It's staggering how many native English speakers can't properly conjugate 'to lay' and 'to lie' across the various tenses.
The US, in particular, is atrocious in this regard, with even the university educated making a complete pig's ear of it. Britain isn't quite as bad, but worsening.
I agree with octatone insofar that proper usage may well be deemed archaic within my lifetime. Nevertheless, I shall persevere with correct usage until the grim reaper decides otherwise.
She laid what in bed?
- im is a contraction of in dem. Whenever you would use in dem, use im instead.
- When do you use in dem? Well, it's dative case for masculine or neuter nouns. Dative case for feminine nouns would give in der, and plural would be in den. Those don't have contracted forms.
- When do you use dative after in? Whenever you want in to mean within - i.e. occurring completely inside it, not entering or leaving. If in means "into", then you use accusative case. In accusative you could get in den, in die, in das = ins or in die again for plural.
- Why do we say "in the bed" instead of "in bed"? Well, that's just German, using articles in more situations than in English.
If you mean lays as present tense, it's the wrong tense because "lag" is past tense. If you mean past tense, then the problem is that the "-s" ending doesn't appear in the past tense in standard american english. he runs, he ran. I've never come across a dialect of american english that uses the "-s" ending in the past tense.
"In" is a two-way preposition, meaning it can take either Accusative or Dative. You should use Accusative (e.g. "in das Bett") when the implied meaning is "into": "Ich gehe in das Haus". If, however, the implied meaning is "inside" rather than "into", you should use Dative. In this particular case, she was not moving into the bed, she was already in there, lying. Hence Dative is called for, "in dem Bett" - "im Bett".
On a separate note, I would be curious about the case that should be used in German if one were to use "laid" instead of "lay" (that is, to use it correctly and not out of ignorance): after all, laying something in bed means moving that something into there. I would think that would actually ask for Accusative. German speakers out there?
Exactly. There are other sentences in Duo's lessons that confirm what you're saying. Here are some examples where the first sentence uses the transitive verb and accusative case, and the second sentence in each example uses the intransitive verb and dative case:
"I lay the child in (into) the bed. The child now lies in (within) the bed."
Ich lege das Kind ins Bett. Das Kind liegt jetzt im Bett.
"I have laid the plates on (onto) the table. The plates now lie on (upon) the table."
Ich habe die Teller auf den Tisch gelegt. Die Teller liegen jetzt auf dem Tisch.
[EDIT: Thanks mizinamo for the correction]
I certainly hope we stop making the world "great" again soon too! But in all seriousness I do think this is one of those words where there's more than one acceptable colloquial use at this point. It's not just an American thing--there is at least one comment from a British native English speaker complaining the same. I personally learned the correct usage in grammar class, but it sounded too archaic or formal for me to use naturally in spoken language (I personally get around it by saying "was lying" instead for instance). We're descriptivists and believe language evolves, right?
Given that this particular use has not become widely accepted in about 700 years during which it has been baffling speakers, I doubt it will "evolve" into being correct any time soon:
As long as there is a critical mass of English speakers who know the difference (and apparently this is still the case), those who misuse these words - out of ignorance or laziness - may find themselves being judged as poorly educated, fairly or unfairly. After all, language is used for more than just conveying verbal information. It is also good for signalling: we always judge people by how they speak, not merely by what they say. Like, totally ;-)
There are always elements of both, prescriptivism and descriptivism in any language. As long as there is a notion of e.g. bad grammar, there are prescriptivist elements at play. What is acceptable is a matter of broad consensus, not some antiquated rules, but there just isn't such a consensus on your use of "to lay". Modern dictionaries are not bulwarks of prescriptivism: e.g. the OED is adding new words all the time. So I challenge you to find a dictionary that concurs with your use of "to lay" instead of "to lie". And until at least one major dictionary "gives in", a teaching program has no business to cater to bad language habits.
It's the past tense of the wrong verb. Please read other comments or check a dictionary before posting.
"Lay" here is the past tense of "to lie", not the third person form of the verb "to lay".
http://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/lay_1?q=lay (see the highlighted remark in particular).
Also, this might be of interest http://www.merriam-webster.com/video/0062-lay_lie.html?pid=mw_results
Despite what is prescriptively correct. I cannot say that. I have to think, "She lay what in bed." I don't know what the etymology is here, but those ignorant of the rule cannot use make sense of it. Where is the linguistic survey of usage that indicates what people really do. I think "She laid down in bed." (reflexive) should be correct, according to usage.
You're thinking about the superficial grammar. The display of the reflexive is not there, but the thought is. Here, 'She laid down in bed.' if there is no other object, it's clear enough what the object has to be: herself.
If you don't have 'got' and do have 'down' the meaning of 'She laid herself down in bed.' would be clear.