Irregular Verbs[]

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These high-frequency verbs are irregular in some way, but must be memorized to be able to use them effectively.

Don - to do[]

Participles: dond, gedon/gedœn (dialect)

_ sg. - pl.
Ic do wiȝ do
þu st ȝiȝ do
he/scie/it þ hje do


_ sg. - pl.
Ic dade wiȝ daden
þu dadest ȝiȝ daden
he/scie/it dade hje daden

Subjunctive II:

_ sg. - pl.
Ic dæde wiȝ dæden
þu dædest ȝiȝ dæden
he/scie/it dæde hje dæden

Gan - to go[]

  • Participles: gand, gegan
  • Perfect: ic em gegan...
_ sg. - pl.
Ic ga wiȝ gaþ
þu st ȝiȝ gaþ
he/scie/it þ hje gaþ


_ sg. - pl.
Ic geng wiȝ gengen
þu gengst ȝiȝ gengen
he/scie/it geng hje gengen

Past Perfect (I have gone):

_ sg. - pl.
Ic em gegan wiȝ sind gegan
þu ert gegan ȝiȝ sind gegan
he/scie/it is gegan hje sind gegan

Future Perfect (I will have gone):

_ sg. - pl.
Ic bim gegan wiȝ beeþ gegan
þu bist gegan ȝiȝ beeþ gegan
he/scie/it biþ gegan hje beeþ gegan

Haben - to have[]

  • Participles: habend, gehafd
  • Perfect: ic habe gehafd...
_ sg. - pl.
Ic habe wiȝ hab
þu hafst ȝiȝ hab
he/scie/it hafþ hje hab

Subjunctive I:

_ sg. - pl.
Ic habe wiȝ haben
þu habest ȝiȝ haben
he/scie/it habe hje haben


_ sg. - pl.
Ic hafde wiȝ hafden
þu hafdest ȝiȝ hafden
he/scie/it hafde hje hafden

Subjunctive II:

_ sg. - pl.
Ic hæfde wiȝ hæfden
þu hæfdest ȝiȝ hæfden
he/scie/it hæfde hje hæfden

Hycgen - to think[]

In this verb, meaning to think about something for a time, think over, the present is pronounced ich hü-jeh, thu hüchst, etc. It uses an ich-laut in the 2nd and 3rd persons. In the past tense, this g sounds like Scottish loch


_ sg. - pl.
Ic hycge wiȝ hycgeþ
þu hyȝst ȝiȝ hycgeþ
he/scie/it hyȝþ hje hycgeþ


_ sg. - pl.
Ic hogde wiȝ hogden
þu hogdest ȝiȝ hogden
he/scie/it hogde hje hogden

Past Perfect (I have thought):

_ sg. - pl.
Ic habe gehogd wiȝ habeþ gehogd
þu hafst gehogd ȝiȝ habeþ gehogd
he/scie/it hafþ gehogd hje habeþ gehogd

Subjunctive II (I would think):

_ sg. - pl.
Ic hœgde wiȝ hœgden
þu hœgdest ȝiȝ hœgden
he/scie/it hœgde hje hœgden

Libben - to live[]

This refers to the action of living. The verb to reside in a place is wunen.

  • Present: ic libbe, þu lifst, he lifþ; wiȝ/ȝiȝ/hje libbeþ
  • Past: ic lifde, þu lifdest, he lifde; wiȝ/ȝiȝ/hje lifden
  • Perfect: ic habe gelifd...

Secgen - to say[]

This verb is most often used in indirect quotes, i.e., "He said that he was going home..." (He sæȝde þat he to Hus ginge.). For direct quotes, the verb kweðen to say is used, i.e., "You said, 'I bought a new computer.'" (Þu kwaþst, 'ic bohte anen niwen Computer.')

_ sg. - pl.
Ic secge wiȝ secg
þu sæȝst ȝiȝ secg
he/scie/it sæȝþ hje secg

And the past:

_ sg. - pl.
Ic sæȝde wiȝ sæȝden
þu sæȝdest ȝiȝ sæȝden
he/scie/it sæȝde hje sæȝden
  • Perfect: ic habe gesæȝd...

Wesen/Been - to be[]

Wesen/Been is the only verb with a distinct future tense, as all other verbs use werðen and the infinitive.

  • Perfect: ic em gewesen...
  • Future Perfect: ic bim gebeen...I will have been (in the future past now, but completed in the future at some point)
  • Future Perfect (referring to now): ic bim gewesen...I will have been in the past (now or before now)
present sg. pl.
Ic em wiȝ sind
þu ert ȝiȝ sind
he/scie/it is hje sind
past sg. pl.
Ic was wiȝ waren
þu wast ȝiȝ waren
he/scie/it was hje waren
subj.2 sg. pl.
Ic wære wiȝ wæren
þu wærest ȝiȝ wæren
he/scie/it wære hje wæren
future sg. prn pl. prn
Ic bim bɪm wiȝ beeþ beːəθ
þu bist bɪst ȝiȝ beeþ beːəθ
he/scie/it biþ bɪθ hje beeþ beːəθ
  • Future Perfect 1/2:
form now tomorrow two days from now
Ic bim gebeen - speaking about this time at this point
Ic bim gewesen speaking about this time at this point -