Difference between Spend and Spent

Which of these sentences seem to be correct to you? ‘Did you spend your money?’ Or ‘Did you spent your money?’ Confusing, isn’t it? How are the words ‘spend’ and ‘spent’ different from one another? When can we use the words ‘spent’ and ‘spend’ in sentences appropriately? This article will point out how ‘spend’ and ‘spent’ are different from each other. It’s essential that students develop the basic framework for using the correct word for the correct context.

Students often get stuck while using some words in the English Language. The reason being most of these words are either pronounced the same or have similar meanings. To ensure that students understand when and how to use these words, the following points will be discussed in detail.

Table Summarising the Difference between Spend and Spent

Spend Spent
Meaning The word spend means to pay out money or use up time to do something. The word spent means exhausted as well as the past form of the word ‘spend’.
Usage It is used as a Verb. It is used as a Verb and Adjective.
Example How do you want to spend your holidays? He spent all the money he had.

The chart shows that though ‘spent’ is the past form of the verb ‘spend’, neither of them can be used interchangeably or synonymously. Since ‘spent’ is used as the past form of the verb, using it instead of ‘spend’ will change the meaning of the sentence.

The Difference between Spend and Spent – Meanings

There are two points of difference between the words ‘spend’ and ‘spent’. Firstly the word ‘spend’ is used as a verb which means to pay out money or use up time to do something, for example, ‘Please spend some time reading books.’ Here, ‘spend’ is used to mean to use or devote time for reading books. The word ‘spend’ is the present base form of the verb itself. Secondly, the word ‘spent’, even though it refers to the past and past participle form of the word ‘spend’, it can be used as a verb as well as an adjective. When used as an adjective, ‘spent’ refers to exhaustion or fatigue, for example, ‘Helen’s energy was spent on doing exercises.’ The examples below will clear any doubts one might have about the usage of these words.

Examples of Spend and Spent

Let’s go through the given examples of ‘spend’ and ‘spent’ to understand the concept clearly.

Spend – Children should not spend a lot of time in front of television or mobile phones. (verb – present form)

Spent – i) Clive spent all his money on gambling. (verb – past form)

ii) All of his energy was spent in mowing the lawn. (adjective)

These examples will help the students understand the difference between the words ‘spend’ and ‘spent’.

Spend and Spent – Conclusion

Summing up, both the words ‘spend’ and ‘spent’ aren’t synonymous and can’t be used interchangeably even though the latter is the past form of the former. While using the words, one has to understand the context of the sentences. BYJU’S offers various articles on many such ‘Difference Between’ two words that students often get confused with.


Leave a Comment

Your Mobile number and Email id will not be published.