In this lesson, we’re talking about the past tense of the verb ‘sweat.’ The past tense of this verb can be confusing, so let’s clarify the correct way to use this verb.

To sweat means to perspire; to exude moisture through the pores of the skin, typically in profuse quantities as a reaction to heat, physical exertion, fever, or fear.

It can also be used when talking about foods and metals that are heated at high temperatures and give the appearance of sweating. It can also be used to talk about the action of sweating out a difficult issue, meaning worrying heavily about something.

In modern English, the most common way to use ‘sweat’ in the past tense is ‘sweated,’ but ‘sweat’ is also considered correct. We know it can be confusing because it’s the same spelling as the present tense. It’s also considered the norm to use ‘sweat’ when it refers to bodily perspiration, and to use ‘sweated’ in any other instances. The conjugation will remain sweat/sweated no matter what the pronoun is.

So, here are several examples using both to show you how this verb is used:

  1. It was so hot when I went for a run this morning that I sweated through my clothes.
  2. The chef  showed us how he sweated the onions before adding them to the chicken.
  3. He sweat through two t-shirts the day he painted the outside of his new house.
  4. The police caught the bank robbery suspect and took him into custody. They sweated him for hours before her finally gave his confession.
  5. I sweat so much at the gym that I had to take a shower before heading home.
  6. The power went out last night, so we couldn’t use a fan or air conditioner. We all sweat through our sheets, it was so uncomfortable!
  7. While we were staying at the hotel, we used the sauna and sweated up a storm in there! It felt good to get rid of all those toxins.
  8. She discovered that someone had been using her credit card fraudulently, and she sweated over it for days before the bank finally reversed the transactions.
  9. There are tissues on the table over there if you need them. You look like you’ve sweat a lot on your walk over here.
  10. Every person on the train this morning sweated like crazy because the air conditioner wasn’t working and it was 100 degrees outside.