Sank vs Sunk

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Sank

Meaning:

past tense of to sink; to become submerged in a liquid.

Examples:

1. The Titanic sank to the bottom of the ocean.

2. The basketball team sank all their free throws.

3. The ship was slowly sinking as the sailors watched helplessly.

Sunk

Meaning:

past participle of sink; to descend into or as if into a lower place; to become lower in amount, degree, or strength; to become depressed.

Examples:

1. After a heavy rainfall, the water level in the river had sunk, revealing rocks and sandbars that were hidden before.

2. As the night progressed, the sunken shipwreck became visible in the moonlit ocean, a haunting reminder of maritime history.

3. The disappointment in his eyes was evident as he watched the balloon's helium slowly dissipate, causing it to sink sadly to the ground.

Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference

Synonyms

Antonyms

Sank

1. Plunged

2. Submerged

3. Inundated

4. Caved-in

5. Dropped down

1. Floated

2. Ascended

3. Raised

4. Lifted

5. Soared

Sunk

1. Submerged

2. Implanted

3. Plunged

4. Dropped to the bottom

5. Depressed

1. Floated

2. Surfaced

3. Ascended

4. Elevated

5. Rose Above

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Sank", "Sunk".

1. Use 'sank' as the past tense of the verb 'sink.' It indicates the action of descending or going down in water or another substance.

2. 'Sunk' is the past participle of 'sink.' It is used with auxiliary verbs like 'has' or 'had' to show that something has descended or gone down.

3. Follow the regular past tense rule for verbs ending in '-ink.' The past tense form is created by changing the '-i-' to '-a-' (e.g., drink, drank; sink, sank).

4. Recognize that 'sunk' is the irregular past participle form of 'sink.' It doesn't follow the regular '-ed' pattern, and the past participle remains the same as the past tense form.

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Frequently asked questions

In what situations should the first word be used?

The word 'sank' should be used when something descends from a higher to a lower level, particularly when referring to a vessel or other object in water. For example, 'The boat sank in the lake.'

When is the appropriate context for using the second word?

The word 'sunk' is the past participle of the verb 'sink' and should be used when referring to the action of something descending from a higher to a lower level. For example, 'The ship sunk in the sea.'

Do the two words share the same pronunciation?

No, the two words have slightly different pronunciations. The word 'sank' is pronounced with the 'e' sound, whereas the word 'sunk' is pronounced with the 'a' sound.

What are some common mistakes people make when using these words?

A common mistake when using these words is confusing them with each other, as they both refer to a sinking or descending motion from a higher to a lower level. Additionally, some people may mistakenly use the verb 'sink' instead of either 'sank' or 'sunk' in certain contexts. For example, 'The boat sink in the lake' should be 'The boat sank in the lake'.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. The Titanic ___________ to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

2. The boat had ___________ after hitting an iceberg.

3. The water ___________ around the capsized vessel.

4. The vessel had ___________ beneath the waves.

5. She watched as it ___________ out of sight.

6. Its remains ___________ to the ocean floor.

Answer 1: Sank

Explanation: Sank is the past tense form of the verb to sink, which indicates a movement of something lower, and is the appropriate phrase to indicate the movement of the Titanic to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

Answer 2: Sunk

Explanation: Sunk is the past participle form of the verb to sink, meaning to descend or fall into a lower position. This would accurately describe the boat after it hit an iceberg and descended underwater.

Answer 3: Sank

Explanation: Again, sank is the past tense form of the verb to sink, which indicates a movement of something lower. In this sentence, it is describing the water sinking around the capsized vessel.

Answer 4: Sunk

Explanation: Sunk is the past tense form of the verb to sink, which indicates a movement of something lower. In this context, it would be the vessel that is in a lower position, beneath the waves.

Answer 5: Sank

Explanation: Sank is the past tense form of the verb to sink, which indicates a movement of something lower. In this sentence, it is describing the movement of the vessel out of sight, as it sinks lower into the water.

Answer 6: Sunk

Explanation: Sunk is the past tense form of the verb to sink, which indicates a movement of something lower. In this sentence, it is describing the remains of the vessel that have descended to the ocean floor.

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