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bought vs brought | Know The Difference and When to Use Those words

by Ankita Tripathy

I remember when I was a child, every time there was an English language exam, I had to write a composition. I remember praying to God that I did not have to choose between the words bought and brought.

This was my nightmare. Can you believe it!

But now, after having two degrees in English under my belt, I am ready to guide people who still face the same dilemma.

At times, you may feel embarrassed to ask others and think of this as your weakness. But what matters, in the end, is your will to learn. And if that is something that has brought you here, then I am rooting for you, my friend!

Keep reading this article till the end to find out which one to choose between ‘bought’ and ‘brought’…

Bought Vs Brought

Bought Vs Brought gif

As a student of English, I know that it can get difficult at times to choose between the words brought and bought. That is the reason why I am here to help you out.

Even though these two words sound confusingly similar, they are entirely different. The only similarity between the two words is the fact that they are both the past participle of an original verb tense form.

While bought is the past tense of the word ‘buy,’ brought is the past tense of the word ‘bring.’

If you want to know more about them, keep reading this article till the end…

Read : Sale vs Sell – Know the Correct Time to Use Those Two Words.

Bought

You must have come across the word ‘bought’ on multiple occasions. This is the past participle of the word buy. When the writer uses the word ‘bought,’ he or she implies that they have purchased something in the past.

The meaning of the word is to have obtained a particular item after paying for the same. It also means to have acquired the possession of something in exchange for money or any other item.

Uses

Confused when to use the word ‘bought’? Let me help you out with that.

You should use the word ‘bought’ when you want to mean something that you have purchased with money in the past. This means that the action of buying or acquiring it is already over.

In other words, it refers to the act of buying that has taken place in the past.

Tense

The word bought is the past tense of the word buy, which means to acquire something with money or any other value.

Buy (v) – present tense

Bought (v) – past tense, past participle.

Read : Which One Is Correct: I Seen It or I Saw it? Seen vs Saw Examples.

Pronunciation

The pronunciation of the word brought is nowhere near the present tense of the original ‘buy.’ While buy is pronounced as ‘by,’ bought is pronounced similar to caught or taught.

When you say it, pronounce it as bot.

Examples

Examples of the word bought are as follows:

  • Maya bought a beautiful painting.
  • Karen bought the car.
  • I bought something that tastes like apples.
  • Peter bought the house.
  • Who bought these pencils?
  • He bought most of the things from the market.
  • She bought a lily for her grandmother.

Synonyms

Some of the synonyms of the word bought are:

  • Secure(d)
  • Procure(d)
  • Obtain(ed)
  • Get/got
  • Acquire(d)
  • Pay for/paid for

Brought

The meaning of the word ‘brought’ is to have managed to make something or someone be present with you. This means conducting or guiding someone or something to be present with you or someone else.

Even though the word may sound very similar to the word bought, it is different from it.

Read : Is Correct to Say in Case? Know The Difference Between Incase or In case.

Uses

Feeling confused about when to use the word brought? I am ready to help.

You can use the word brought when you want to write about something that you have carried to a particular palace. That object if the sentence can be both a living or a nonliving thing.

Tense

The word ‘brought’ is the simple past tense of the word bring. It is also the past participle of bring.

Bring (v) – present tense

Brought (v) – past tense, past participle.

Pronunciation

The way you pronounce brought is completely different from the original verb bring in the present tense.

While bring is pronounced as br-ing, the word brought sounds similar to the word trot. When trying to pronounce the word ‘brought,’ try to pronounce it as brot.

Examples

Examples of the usage of the word brought are as follows: 

  • She brought her copy the next day.
  • I brought it with me yesterday.
  • Belinda brought something to eat.
  • The child was brought up by her foster parents.
  • Josh brought his father along.
  • Sharon brought the flowers in.
  • The call brought back her attention.

Read : “Has vs Have”: How you can determine when to use Has or Have?

Synonyms

Some synonyms of the word brought are as follows:

  • Escort
  • Lead
  • Guide
  • Usher
  • Present
  • Drive

Bought Vs Brought: Difference

 Difference

Even though the two words bought and brought sound confusingly similar, they are, in fact, totally different from each other.

These two words may sound similar, ust like in the case of adopt and adapt. The difference is in terms of their meaning.

The word ‘bought’ refers to the act of buying something in the past. In other words, you use bought when you want to mean that you or someone else has acquired something in the past through money or another item of similar value.

However, when you want to mean that you or someone else had made something or someone is present with you, you should use the word brought. It means that you have managed to bring something with you but in the past tense.

While the word brought implies the act of transporting or carrying something or someone, bought refers to the act of monetary transaction.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. When Should You Use Brought And Bought?


If you want to mean that you have acquired something by paying the price for it in the past, you should write bought.

However, if you are writing a sentence where you want to mean that you have caused someone or something to be present at a particular place with you, you should use ‘brought.’

2. Is Bought Proper Grammar?


Do not think that the word ‘bought’ is not proper or correct grammar. Even though it has got nothing to do with the word ‘brought,’ bought is actually the past participle of the verb ‘buy,’ and it is also a simple past tense form of buy.

3. Which Is Correct Between ‘bring’ And ‘brought’?


Both the words ‘bring ‘and ‘brought’ are grammatically correct. These two words also mean the same things. However, there is a slight difference between them.

While the word bring means to take something to a particular place in the present tense, the word ‘brought’ is used to refer to the past tense of ‘bring.’

Wrapping It Up!

Feeling confused between the words brought and bought?

Just like the case of principal and principle, even though they may sound very similar and are also the past participle of their original verb form, the meaning of these two words is different.

The word ‘bought’ is the past participle of the verb buy which means the act of acquiring something through money. On the other hand, the word brought means to have managed to carry something or someone along with you to be present in the scenario.

Both the words are different in terms of meaning, usage, and pronunciation. However, they are of the same tense. That is the only similarity that they share.

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