RHL School

English Basics
Volume 3, Number 30, May 3, 1999

Lay or Lie, Raise or Rise


“Lay” is a transitive verb, it takes a direct object. “Lie” is intransitive, it doesn’t take a direct object. You can lie down; you must lay something else down.

It works the same way with “raise” and “rise”. “Raise” is transitive, it needs a direct object. “Rise”, like “lie,” is intransitive. There’s no direct object involved. You can rise from your bed. You raise your head to look out the window.


Transitive: The subject does it to something.

He lays the box on the ground.
She raises the shades.

Intransitive: The subject does not act on something else.

Lie down and rest.
The sun will rise soon.






Draw a ring around the correct underlined word in each sentence.


1. Do not lay lie around doing nothing all day!

2. Lay Lie your head on the pillow and go to sleep.

3. I hate it when Johnny lays lies his hands on the remote control!

4. The snakes lays lies silently, waiting for its prey.

5. There’s less pain when I lay lie on my back.

6. You don’t have to raise rise the roof over a little mistake!

7. He opens that valve and that raises rises the level of the water.

8. The new tower will raise rise into the clouds.

9. We must raise rise the bridge so the ships can sail under it.

10. Raise Rise early each day and enjoy the morning.


Copyright 1999 RHL

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