Assume v. Presume

OP
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
with baited breath
Oops!

Common error, due to language slippage: the word bated no longer being in common use and therefore not understood. From a similar root as abate (to cease or limit), bated means paused or held.

It's difficult to find a meaning in "baited breath".
 

MikeSh

Well-Known Member
:). I did think to myself as I was writing it that I didn't know if it was with or without the i, but couldn't be bothered to Google it. It was 50:50 :oops:
 

Trev

The Dumb One
Well, I just had a look around this 'was sat' thing. 'Sitting' is the present participle of 'sit', so is not 'was sitting' an oxymoron as 'was' implies the past which contradicts the present 'ing' implication?
 

MikeSh

Well-Known Member
"Was sat"

The verb to sit conjugates the same as to run, so "he was sat" is no more appropriate than "he was ran".

That is all.
It looks like one of those cases where common use has mixed two versions of similar things.
"I was sitting waiting for the bus" ... "I sat waiting for the bus"
The context of using those two would (in my mind anyway) be a little different, but by using sat instead of sitting in the first you reduce the number of syllables and letters which makes it quicker to speak or write (ie. tap out on a phone :) ).
 

Trev

The Dumb One
In the first, the 'was' changes the meaning to the past tense, but the second is already in the past tense so does not need the 'was' qualifier.
Reducing the number of syllables does not make it right.

But both the above usages are in the past tense, so either is correct as far as I can see.
 
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