Passed vs Past

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What’s the difference between them?

Passed

Meaning:

A past form of the verb 'pass,' which means to have gone by or to have completed successfully.

Examples:

1. She passed the test with flying colors.

2. She passed the ball to her teammate.

3. She passed away last week after a long battle with cancer.

Past

Meaning:

A noun or adjective that means a time that has already happened or has gone by.

Examples:

1. I have learnt from my past mistakes.

2. She looked back fondly on her past adventures.

3. We must try not to dwell too much on the past.

Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference

Synonyms

Antonyms

Passed

Moved past

approved

Failed

Past

in recent times

Future

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Passed", "Past".

1. 'Passed' is the past tense of the verb 'to pass.' Remember it as an action word.

2. 'Past' is never a verb. It can be a noun, adjective, or preposition, usually relating to time gone by or beyond a certain point.

3. Try substituting 'passed' with another verb in the past tense. If the sentence still makes sense, 'passed' is likely the correct choice. E.g., 'He passed the ball' -> 'He threw the ball.'

4. Try substituting 'past' with a different preposition or adjective related to time. If it still makes sense, 'past' is likely correct.

E.g., 'Walk past the shop' -> 'Walk beyond the shop.'

Check the full list of commonly confused words in English

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Frequently asked questions

When to use the first word 'passed'?

The word 'passed' is typically used as the past tense form of the verb 'to pass', meaning that something has been completed - 'She passed the test'. It can also be used to describe how much time has gone by - 'It’s been two years since he passed away'.

When to use the second word 'past'?

The word 'past' is typically used as an adjective or adverb to refer to something that happened or exists before the present time - 'She has a past full of accomplishments'. It is also used to refer to a period of time - 'I spent my summer past in France'.

Do the words have the same pronunciation?

No, the words do not have the same pronunciation. The word 'passed' is pronounced with a short 'a' sound, while the word 'past' is pronounced with a long 'a' sound.

What are common mistakes associated with words 'passed' and 'past'?

One of the most common mistakes associated with these words is using the wrong one in sentences. For example, saying 'She past the test' instead of 'She passed the test'. Another common mistake is mixing up the pronunciation - saying 'passt' instead of 'passed' or 'paast' instead of 'past'.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. The job interview was very difficult, and I was not sure if I had ____ it.

2. The teacher was pleased with my results, as I had ____ all the tests.

3. I was exhausted after my ____ exam.

4. My ____ exams were challenging.

5. I ____ the exam with flying colors.

6. I am proud to say that I have ____ all the tests I have taken.

1. Passed

Explanation: The verb to pass means to successfully complete a test or other activity, and in this case, the interview.

2. Passed

Explanation: The verb to pass means to successfully complete a test or other activity, and in this case, the tests.

3. Past

Explanation: The word past is used to refer to something that happened in the past. In this case, the past exam.

4. Past

Explanation: The word past is used to refer to something that happened in the past. In this case, the past exams.

5. Passed

Explanation: The verb to pass means to successfully complete a test or other activity, and in this case, the exam.

6. Passed

Explanation: The verb to pass means to successfully complete a test or other activity, and in this case, the tests.

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List of Commonly Confused Words

Finding your way around the English language can be hard, especially since there are so many confusing words and rules. So, a list of the most confusing words in English is an extremely useful tool for improving language accuracy and sharing the ideas clearly.