Confusing Words English Lesson: Drink, Drank, Drunk, Drunken

Michael Happy English! 4 Comments

We drank a few of these and got drunk

Today we will look at the irregular verb drink and focus on the past participle form, drunk, and also look at the adjective drunken.

The present tense form of this verb is drink:

  • I drink two cups of coffee every morning.
  • Jack drinks beer, but not wine or spirits.

The past tense form of this verb is drank:

  • I drank two cups of coffee this morning.
  • Jack drank a lot of beer last night.

The past participle form of this verb is drunk

  • I haven’t drunk any coffee since this morning.
  • Jack hasn’t drunk whiskey since he was in college.

You can easily remember the pattern drink, drank, drunk because the letter “a” comes before the letter “u” in the alphabet. So drank is the past and drunk is the past participle – drank > drunk.

Drunk is also used as an adjective to mean intoxicated, from drinking alcoholic drinks.

  • Jack was very drunk last night and fell asleep early.
  • Jane said she easily gets drunk, so she never drinks alcohol.

It is also possible to use the adjective drunken to modify a noun, but when there is no noun to modify we usually use drunk:

  • There were some drunken sports fans on the train tonight.
  • The sports fans were drunk and making noise. Not, the sports fans were drunken

Do you prefer drinking coffee or tea in the morning? Leave a comment here and let me know.

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Thanks for studying today!

  • Francisco Javier

    I don’t usually drink tea or coffee for breakfast. But I do like my cup of green tea when I’m taking a break!

  • hoangdx

    I usually drink tea after had had breakfast. and I prefer drink green tea than coffee.

    • Michael

      Great example. Just one point: “I usually drink tea after I have breakfast” works better because we use the present tense when we talk about our usual habits :)

      • hoangdx

        Thank you so much.