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Lie (“rest horizontally”)

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(Redirected from Lie (rest horizontally))
A pregnant woman lying on a hospital bed.

Lie is an English verb meaning "to rest horizontally.”[1]

Compare sit and stand. While sitting and standing are easy to demonstrate in a classroom, lying is somewhat more difficult.

Lie is an irregular lexical verb. It has the third person form "lies,” the -ing form "lying,” but the preterite "lay" and the past participle "lain.”

Lie is an intransitive verb. Lie forms an ergative verb pair with the transitive verb "lay" meaning "to put something into a position where it lies.” Particularly in informal speech, "lie" and "lay" are conflated.

We often use the phrasal verb "lie down,” even though "lie down" just means "lie.”

Lie is a homonym with “lie” meaning "to tell untruths" - as is the derived 3rd person and-ing forms. The preterite "lay" is a homonym with aforementioned base form “lay.”

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