Past Tense of Beat | Definition, Use & Example Sentences

Because “beat” is an irregular verb, its past simple form differs from its past participle form.

  • Beat is the past simple form of “beat”. It’s identical to the present simple form. It’s used to talk about an action or event that occurred in the past.
  • Beaten is the past participle form. It’s used to form perfect tenses and the passive voice.
    Examples: Beat in a sentence Examples: Beaten in a sentence
    Hannah beat Mark in a game of table tennis. We have beaten every other team in the league.
    You beat me unfairly! Tom has never been beaten in a race.

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    How to use beat

    The past simple form “beat” is used to describe a past action or event.

    Examples: How to use beat
    Liam beat my best score.

    Paula beat the odds in the casino.

    I tried to tell a joke, but my friend beat me to the punchline.

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    How to use beaten

    Beaten is the past participle form of “beat”. It’s used to form perfect tenses (i.e., to describe an action that was completed before another action) and to form passive constructions (i.e., sentences in which the subject is acted upon rather than performing an action).

    Examples: How to use beaten
    Our football team has beaten a number of league records.

    I have never beaten my sister in a game of chess.

    The heavyweight champion has never been beaten.

    Note
    “Beat” is sometimes used in informal contexts to mean “exhausted”. In these instances, “beat” is also used as the past participle (e.g., “I had a flu last week and I’ve been beat ever since”). However, “beat” is never used as a past participle when the meaning is “defeated” or “struck”.

    Worksheet: Beat or beaten

    You can test your understanding of the difference between “beat” and “beaten” with the worksheet below. Fill in either “beat” or “beaten” in each sentence.

    1. No one has ever _______ me in a game of pool.
    2. Martin _______ the dusty rug with a stick.
    3. Our team has been _______ in every game so far.
    1. No one has ever beaten me in a game of pool.
      • “Beaten” can be used as the past participle of “beat” to form perfect tenses.
    1. Martin beat the dusty rug with a stick.
      • The past simple form “beat” is used to describe a past action or event.
    1. Our team has been beaten in every game so far.
      • “Beaten” can be used as the the past participle form of “beat” to form passive constructions (i.e., sentences in which the subject is acted upon rather than performing an action).

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            Frequently asked questions

            What is the past participle of “beat”?

            The past participle form of “beat” is beaten. It’s used to form perfect tenses (e.g., “I have beaten the record”) and to form the passive voice (e.g., “The champion has been beaten”).

            It’s wrong to use the past simple form “beat” instead in these contexts. For example, “The champion has been beat” is incorrect.

            What is the past simple form of “beat”?

            The past simple form of “beat” is beat. It’s identical to the present simple form. It’s used to describe a past action or event (e.g., “You beat me”).

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            Ryan, E. (2023, September 25). Past Tense of Beat | Definition, Use & Example Sentences. Scribbr. Retrieved 23 February 2024, from https://www.scribbr.co.uk/verb/past-tense-of-beat/

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            Eoghan Ryan

            Eoghan has a lot of experience with theses and dissertations at bachelor's, MA, and PhD level. He has taught university English courses, helping students to improve their research and writing.