About the verb: Leave

 What is the meaning of ‘leave’?

In layman terms, the verb ‘leave’ means to GO AWAY from a place. To depart or set out.

For example: to leave home.

It’s pronounced as /liːv/. The two dots ‘:’ within the paranthesis, indicate the long vowel sound. Oftentimes, English learners get confused how to pronounce the two verbs: LEAVE and LIVE.

Keep reading below to learn more.


Pronouncing verbs LEAVE and LIVE


There is a difference in how you pronounce these two words.

In the explanation below, the two dots (:) you see indicate long vowel sound. You’ll see it for the word ‘leave’. Whereas, the word ‘live’ has a quicker pronunciation, sounds like ‘liv’.

Hopefully my explanation below will help you understand it better.

LEAVE – you say it as /liːv/ – almost sounds like – ‘liiiii-v.’

LIVE – you say it like so: /lɪv/ – almost sounds like – ‘liv.’


Past tense of LEAVE


The past tense is LEFT.

Pronounced as /lɛft/. Pronounced as it’s written!

A simple example:

John left home.

To ask a question:

What time did John leave home?

John left home at 10am.

The word LEFT shouldn’t be confused with another word LEFT which we use to indicate direction. For example, left and right.

When indicating direction, we’d need to add more words, normally we add the preposition ‘on’.

For example:

Question: Where did I leave my bag?

Answer: It’s on the cabinet, on your left.

This indicates ‘on your left side’.


Participle of LEAVE


The participle of the verb LEAVE is… LEFT.


All you have to remember is LEAVE, LEFT, LEFT.

For example:

Has John left home already?


Phrasal verbs with LEAVE


I’ll share a couple of examples here.

Leave out – this means to exclude something.

An example:

Let’s leave out the pink balls from the mix.

Leave behind – to leave something or someone behind means to go away and not take them with you.

An example:

John was forced to leave his jacket behind as no jackets were allowed to be worn at the venue.


What are 10 most common phrasal verbs in English?


 I prepared a separate post on the most commonly used Phrasal Verbs in English.

Click here to be taken straight to the Phrasal Verbs post.


Recommended Books you can get on Amazon


Looking for more phrasal verbs?

Below are some of my top three book recommendations on you can get directly from Amazon to help you learn more about phrasal verbs:

1. English Phrasal Verbs In Use: Advanced

2. Learn Phrasal Verbs through Context

3. Top 100 Most Commonly Used Business Idioms and Phrasal Verbs for Advanced Non-Native English Speakers: A simple and easy way to understand business idioms.

4. English Phrasal Verbs in Use Intermediate Book with Answers: Vocabulary Reference and Practice

5. English Phrasal Verbs in Use Intermediate


Recommended Podcast Episodes to help you learn the Past Tense


Tune in to the English Made Simple podcast to improve your English listening skills.

My recommended episodes that can help with learning past tense:


[167] 4 Phrasal Verbs to Use At Work – Deal With | Fill In | Fill In For | Kick Off

 [166] Phrasal Verbs – Get Across | Get Along | Get Away

[147] How To Use Action Verbs In Your CV

[138] To Move In To Move Out Looking For – Phrasal Verbs


And then you can also….

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