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"He gritted his teeth."

I can't tell if gritted is correct because both gritted and grit don't sound right to me in this sentence.

The dictionary says that both grit and gritted are the past tense. (Nowhere does it say 'grot' btw)

In the grit vs gritted they're asking which one is correct when they both technically are and the answers for it aren't useful to me, plus I am asking how it fits in t h i s sentence because I know grit can fit into other sentences, but I wasn't sure if it would fit in mine.

marked as duplicate by Laurel, Sven Yargs, NVZ, David, Xanne Jun 25 '17 at 6:56

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • 1
    What did the dictionary tell you about the past tense of the verb? – Drew Jun 8 '17 at 17:05
  • Personally, I'd like to establish "grot" as the past tense of "grit". – Hellion Jun 8 '17 at 17:07
  • 1
    We've had this one before: “Grit” vs “gritted”. I'm not gonna check any dictionaries, but I'm perfectly happy that grit could be used as a past tense in the cited context. – FumbleFingers Jun 8 '17 at 17:09
  • 1
    Grit and bear it. – Davo Jun 8 '17 at 17:20
  • To answer your edited question, let me quote from the answer whose question you insist yours does not duplicate: One can't know everything, after all; so pick whatever sounds good to you and stick with it. If neither sounds right to you then perhaps you should choose a different verb. – AmE speaker Jun 9 '17 at 2:12

According to Google's Ngrams, gritted is definitely more common.

Google Ngrams Chart

Interestingly, it appears that women didn't grit their teeth in any significant numbers until the mid '70s.

  • The Ngram is useless here, as it is perfectly valid to use the phrase in the present tense, and to do so is quite common. – Hot Licks Jun 9 '17 at 3:00
  • So "grit his/her teeth" includes both the past tense and present and it's still not as popular as gritted. – Roger Sinasohn Jun 9 '17 at 3:56
  • If the chart could be trusted then "grit" would be about 1/7th as common as "gritted", in this sense, and that would be frequently enough to make the "grit" usage "common". Relative frequencies don't have to be nearly equal for the two forms to be considered "popular". – Hot Licks Jun 9 '17 at 17:10
  • Wouldn't the present tense be grits (because with his/her, it would have to be he/she grits his/her teeth)? Otherwise it would be he/she would/will grit his/her teeth, no? – Roger Sinasohn Jun 9 '17 at 17:13
  • Watching the congressional hearing caused him to grit his teeth. – Hot Licks Jun 9 '17 at 17:15

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