Bought or Brought?

What Is the Difference between "Bought" and "Brought"?

"Bought" and "brought" are easily confused because they sound so similar.
  • "Bought" is the past tense of "to buy." For example:
    • I bought a new laptop.
  • "Brought" is the past tense of "to bring." For example:
    • James brought the birthday cake to the restaurant this morning.
bought or brought?


"Bought" is the simple past tense and past participle of the verb "to buy."

Example sentences with "bought":
  • I bought a seven-dollar pen because I always lose pens and I got sick of not caring. correct tick (Comedian Mitch Hedberg)
  • (Here, "bought" is in the simple past tense.)
  • Men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage - they have experienced pain and have bought jewelry. correct tick (Comedian Rita Rudner)
  • (Here, "bought" is a past participle.)


"Brought" is the simple past tense and past participle of the verb "to bring."

Example sentences with "brought":
  • I brought the film like a flower to the world. correct tick (Film director Claude Chabrol)
  • (Here, "brought" is in the simple past tense.)
  • Great things are done by a series of small things that have been brought together. correct tick (Artist Vincent Van Gogh)
  • (Here, "brought" is a past participle.)

Remembering "Brought"

Let the r in "brought" remind you of "bring."

Brought or Brung?

The past tense of "to bring" is "brought." "Brung" does not exist. It is a spelling mistake. "Brang" does not exist either. It is also a spelling mistake. This mistake is understandable when you consider the past forms of similar-looking verbs:
verbpast tensepast participle
to ringrangrung
to singsangsung
to bringbrang

Common Terms with "Bought" and "Brought"

Terms with "bought":
  • bought a car
  • bought as seen
  • bought the farm
  • bought the dummy
Terms with "brought":
  • brought a smile to my face
  • brought a tear to my eye
  • brought down
  • brought forward
  • brought into question
  • brought it up
  • brought to bear
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This page was written by Craig Shrives.