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Stood, standing, sat, sitting

(16 Posts)
HarlotOTara Mon 27-Jul-09 07:28:03

Apologies if this has been discussed in very recent memory but I do need to know.

I have always been under the assumption that it is grammatically correct to say 'I was sitting' not 'I was sat', 'I was standing' not 'I was stood'. If I am wrong then I will beat myself with a wet flannel. However I do need to know because 'I was sat' and 'I was stood' feel painfully wrong and make me want to shout.

Pruneurs Mon 27-Jul-09 07:31:34

It's dialect, innit.
Just a different variety of English. Standard English is "I was sitting" etc

LynetteScavo Mon 27-Jul-09 07:43:23

Is it dialect? It just makes people sound really dumb to me.

Pruneurs Mon 27-Jul-09 07:51:56

iirc it's a feature of northern English, which has slightly different roots to standard English. It grates on my ear as well, tbh, but what can you do?

HarlotOTara Mon 27-Jul-09 08:03:27

Well Liz Jones in the Daily Mail wrote some appalling piece this morning saying 'I was stood..'. She isn't (afik) a northerner but just a useless writer using bad grammer. This was a bridge too far for me, hence the OP. You could say what else would one expect from the DM and I would agree. However she is a 'journalist' and should know better!!!

It grates every time I hear 'sat' and 'stood' incorrectly and have to bite my tongue or hit my hand. It is almost as bad as 'learn/teach' or'envy/jealousy' being used in the wrong way.

In my defence of reading such a mysoginist paper as the DM, I have none but looked on-line for mindless crap when I was unable to sleep blush.

Anyway very pleased I am right (for once!)

mumblechum Mon 27-Jul-09 08:26:49

You are right Harlot. I was sat, I was stood also grates on me & I don't think dialect has anything to do with it tbh. Either it's correct English or it isn't.

Am glad to know now who Liz Jones is, keep seeing her name popping up in thread titles but too lazy to click on them so far.

Pruneurs Mon 27-Jul-09 08:34:57

It's not the English I would use if I were writing a column in the DM, either. I would use standard English.

That doesn't make dialect wrong, just not the right thing in this case.

Astrophe Mon 27-Jul-09 08:43:38

It grates on my ears horribly too - when we were in the UK I was always shocked to hear very well educated people say it, but yes, it seems to be a midlands/northern thing. Also "How do you want your steak cooking?" , "Do you want the gate shutting?"...The first few times I heard these I just stood looking gormless as I wasn't sure what was being asked!

Nobody says any of these in Australia (although we have plenty of apalling 'dialect' of our own I'm sure)

campion Wed 29-Jul-09 17:26:10

It isn't dialect or a different variety of English. It's ignorance of grammar or laziness.
'Ah'd 'appen laik a taws or just mullock abaht on a setterda' is dialect.
(Perfectly comprehensible if you were brought up in the West Riding wink !!)

Incorrect use of stood and sat is just wandering into the language unchallenged. It's almost de rigeur on Radio 5Live and I've even seen it in The Timesshock

Come to think of it, I even heard a certain English teacher of my acquaintance say ' I was stood in the car park' shock shock

pointydog Wed 29-Jul-09 17:29:40

wogan always moans about this.

GossipMonger Wed 29-Jul-09 17:32:34


Most of the teachers at school say it and it appalls me.

My sis who has just graduated as a teacher says 'I was sat on the chair!'

'Were you stood there or not?'



DadInsteadofMum Fri 31-Jul-09 09:45:21

If you were instructed to sit on the chair wouldn't it be correct? E.g. I was sat on the chair by the teacher.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Fri 31-Jul-09 09:47:43

Learning Point of this lesson: NEVER read the Daily Mail.


alexpolismum Sun 02-Aug-09 14:33:09

If you say 'I was stood' or 'I was sat' it becomes passive voice and it means you were made to stand or sit. 'The skittles were stood in a row' - you understand that they did not stand up by themselves.

Iseult40 Mon 21-Jun-10 09:24:30

I know this is an old discussion but I just wanted to say how much I agree with those who find the use of 'sat' instead of 'sitting' so annoying. 'Lay' instead of 'lying' is another misuse of English that drives me crazy, as in 'I was laying on my bed' - no, no, no! you were LYING on your bed!

The author known as Miss Read (who wrote the books about Fairacre and Thrush Green), in her role as Fairacre's school teacher, always dealt with this use of 'laying' by asking 'Eggs or bricks?' And that's it in a nutshell - a hen can lay eggs, a bricklayer can lay bricks, anyone can lay the table, but you can only lie on your bed, you can't lay on it.

This sort of sloppy English seems to be widespread now, in the same way that 'John and I' appears to have replaced 'John and me' when the object of a sentence. Why on earth do people said 'She sent a card to John and I' instead of the correct 'She sent a card to John and me'? Would they use 'I' instead of 'me' if they left John out of the sentence - 'She sent a card to I'? No, I don't think so, so why so many people persist in this incorrect use of 'I' I simply don't know.

OK, rant over!

Tropi Fri 17-Mar-17 10:33:00

You are heading in the right direction and more than likely acceptable to most people, but technically still incorrect.
If the teacher had physically placed you in the seat, you would then be completely correct.

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