One Point English Preposition Lesson: Injure and Hurt

Michael Happy English! 16 Comments

She was almost injured!

She was almost injured!

Injure and hurt are both verbs, but the way we use them is a little different. Let’s have a look today at how we use these words.

be + injure is used without an object, and generally used in the passive voice. You can use

+ be injured or [body part] + be injured:

  • My leg was injured in the accident.
  • Jack was injured when he slipped on the ice.

Note that be injured does not take a direct object:

  • Jack was injured his arm when he slipped on the ice.

Injure as an active verb does take a direct object and follows the basic grammar pattern, S + injure + O, like this:

  • I injured my leg in the accident.
  • Jack injured his arm in the accident.

Hurt is generally used as an active verb which takes a direct object and follows the basic grammar pattern, S + hurt + O. Hurt is also an irregular verb, so the three forms are hurt, hurt, & hurt.

  • I hurt my leg in the accident.
  • Jack hurt his arm in the accident.

We can also use be hurt in the passive voice, like be injured. You can use

+ be hurt or [body part] + be hurt:

  • My leg was hurt in the accident.
  • Jack was hurt when he slipped on the ice.

Generally, the meaning of hurt is less serious that the meaning of injure. If you injure yourself or are injured, you will probably need medical attention or First Aid. If you are hurt, you may be uncomfortable, but not in need of First Aid.

Do you know another way to use injure and hurt? Leave a comment here and let me know!

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Thanks for studying today!

  • Andrea

    You can hurt somebody’s feelings, but you cannot injure somebody’s feelings, can you?

    • Michael

      Andrea, great point. Thanks for sharing :)

  • Maria Talha

    Well I learnt a new point from this new one point lesson that there exist irregular verbs with all the three forms exactly similar. Useful indeed!

    • Michael

      Maria, “put” is a similar irregular verb which has the same form in the present, past, and pp:
      Put, put, put

      Who can add to this list?

  • Chaya

    How about contrasting it with ‘wounded’ which is done by one person to another. Someone stabbed him but he was only wounded. Whereas ‘injured’ happens to a person. A big block of wood fell on him and he was seriously injured.

    • Michael

      Hi Chaya,
      Well it doesn’t exactly work that way. Because a person can also injure another person, and I can wound my hand on broken glass. The dictionary says wound (n) means “damage to living tissue,” so the nuance in the verb wound indicates that. In other words, I say I wounded my arm, it means my skin was cut but if I say I injured my arm, possibly the bone is broken.
      That said, some native speakers may used wound or injure interchangeably, but that is how language works in the real world. What do you think?

      • Chaya

        Well, I have to admit that I teach my students exactly the way I expressed it above. Your explanation is too confusing – and nuanced – for them. If I read the sentence: He was wounded – I think that someone did something to him. He was injured – something happened to him but not from someone.

        • Michael

          I see you are a fan of a concise, one point lesson as well. That’s sensible :)

  • Derly

    Hi! I would like to thank you because of your Easy english lessons. You explain topics in an easy way and that makes me understand and learn on spot. Thank you so much :)

    • Michael

      Thanks Derly, I appreciate that :-)

  • Karla

    Michael thanks for your lessons! are great! I learned a lot! Greetings from Chile! :)

    • Michael

      Thanks Karla, I’m glad you like the lessons :)

  • http://yahoo Gustavo

    I have to say that your lessons have been pretty useful to me as well and actually I’ve used some to teach my student… hope that’s ok with you sir!!! :-)

    • Michael

      Thanks Gustavo. I really appreciate that!

  • Sarah

    Thanks, This is very fruitful, I will share this link to my students

    • Michael

      Thanks Sarah. I’m glad you like it :)