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“Sang” or “Sung?”

Contact Info: Dan Mitchell

Office: A15
Email: mitchelldan@deanza.edu
Phone: 408.864.8511

Office Hours: Spring

 Monday thru Thursday
  8:50 am - 9:15 am
  11:20 am - 11:45 am
 (other times by appointment)

Office Hours: Fall & Winter

Monday and Wednesday
  8:50 am - 9:20 am
  11:20 am - 11:50 am
 Tuesday and Thursday
  8:30 am - 9:20 am
(other times by appointment)

As I read concert reports, I notice frequent confusion about where and how to use these versions of the word “sing.”

Sang

  • “The choir sang the piece.”
  • “The women sang with beautiful voices.
  • “The men sang together.”
  • “We all sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to her.”

Sung

  • “I have sung that song”
  • “The main melody was sung by sopranos.”
  • “The national anthem is usually sung before the game starts.”
  • “I had not sung that song before.”

INCORRECT (and alternatives)

  • I sung the melody. (Actually, you sang the melody.)
  • She sung a song. (She sang a song.)
  • I have sang that tune. (You have sung that tune OR you sang that tune.)
  • The melody was sang by the sopranos. (The melody was sung by the sopranos OR the sopranos sang the melody.)

(Note: This isn’t the whole story. For example, “A song sung too slowly might make me sleepy.”)

Other posts about common writing issues:

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Contact Info: Dan Mitchell

Office: A15
Email: mitchelldan@deanza.edu
Phone: 408.864.8511

Office Hours: Spring

 Monday thru Thursday
  8:50 am - 9:15 am
  11:20 am - 11:45 am
 (other times by appointment)

Office Hours: Fall & Winter

Monday and Wednesday
  8:50 am - 9:20 am
  11:20 am - 11:50 am
 Tuesday and Thursday
  8:30 am - 9:20 am
(other times by appointment)
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