My post on waked vs. waken continues to be one of the most popular (not that readership is exactly huge.) Interestingly, it's not just wake that has wreaked/wrought confusion. A few years ago I realised that in spite of the tidy lists of irregular verbs (i.e., ones with strong form conjugations as opposed to the weak -ed form) that I was passing out to my students, there is a good deal of uncertainty about quite a few verbs. Thankfully, most of them are a bit too rare to deal with in class.
For example, let's look at cleave. First of all, we have two quite opposite meanings: 1) split and 2) stick together. Our past tense (preterite) form is cleaved or clove or cleft. And we also have three possible past participle forms: cleaved, cloven, and cleft. "So which is correct?" you may ask. All of them, but usually for different people.
Here's another: if you were out walking in the summer, you might note the smell of a freshly mown lawn and not give the grammar a second thought. But how comfortable would you be saying, "I've just mown the grass"? For me, it would be mowed. And if you walk briskly away thereafter, have you stridden away? Really?
Here are a few that you can try out at home. You might find that putting them in different sentences will give you different results.
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