Thursday, October 7, 2010

Sneaked vs. Snuck: Jennifer Garner on Conan O'Brien



In this clip, actress Jennifer Garner tells Conan that snuck is not a word, and Conan proves her wrong. Gotta love his crazy laugh at the end. 

Actually, it's okay to use either sneaked or snuck as the past tense of sneak. Sneaked was there first (and is more formal), but snuck has been popular since the 19th century and now both are recognized as acceptable.

39 comments:

  1. Surely only by those who know no better! Why take a perfectly regular verb and turn it into an irregular verb? This has infected the world vian the USA, and most American grammar experts I have read, all say it should not be used!

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    1. I don't believe it's so much a matter of taking a perfectly regular verb and mangling it as it is continuing with a vocabulary handed down over generations.

      That is, snuck was the earliest form used - perhaps based on lingering British accents as they smoothed out to a Southern drawl but either way, this isn't a case of pervasive, unrefined misuse (by which no other countries are bound to follow: another poor assertion on your part) but a casualty of autonomous cultures sharing a language.

      While we're at the snarky site anyway, I suppose I'll ask which professionals you know who introduce themselves, or otherwise include on their resumes a qualification labeled 'grammar expert?'

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    2. I guess we will "puck" in the window in the future.
      What started as a joke on sitcom shows is now the norm.
      What a shame.

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  2. Good God Sharon. "perfectly regular verb"? "the USA and most American... read .. not be used."?

    It's a little difficult to take your stance on proper English serious when you use the wrong tense and create a run-on sentence.

    Did you think you would get that sneaked in? LOL

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  3. You Anonymous people are complete idiots and it scares me the comments you left here....especially the sexual ones. It's disgusting and I feel sorry for your spouses, children, family and friends as you are most likely misogynistic jerks.

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    1. Surely, you must be talking to yourself.

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  4. It is the internet. Con't take it seriously.

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  5. 'Sneaked' is correct, 'snuck' isn't. If ignorant people use a word that doesn't exist long enough, even dictionary compilers and ill-educated teachers accept it, but that still doesn't make it right. Sharon was right. And she wasn't disgusting, which is more than can be said for most of those who've left comments here. Oh, and one takes something 'seriously', not 'serious'. Adverb, not adjective, idiot!

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    1. Thank you!! That person tried to put Sharon down and got told.

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    2. That and if we all bowed down to never changing a language, there wouldn't be any other languages. All languages can be linked to a linear timeline of evolution in not only creating words, but word usage. Snuck was a new word, and is acceptable as it does not really break any laws, as "quiz" was never a word and should be shunned, by their logic.

      The one that should be slammed down is using the word literally to mean figuratively. That is not evolution of language, that is sheer stupidity, as you cannot take a word and make it mean the exact opposite of what it means instead of using the opposing word. That and "could of". "...Of you gone to the park yet?" "What?! That made no sense!" "Neither did what you said."

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  6. "If ignorant people use a word that doesn't exist long enough, even dictionary compilers and ill-educated teachers accept it, but that still doesn't make it right."

    Yes it does. If it didn't make it right, correct language would be the language we spoke several thousand years ago, and that's clearly not the case. Language evolution is nothing but "wrongs" being accepted over and over again.

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  7. Just be sure when correcting someones diction to sound as pretentious as possible, everyone loves that!

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    1. It does get you crossed off a lot of party lists, now doesn't it? ;)

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    2. "...someone's..."

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    3. Dear me. I have been corrected by the "snuck" users for saying sneaked.
      I hate the use of "snuck", but I NEVER correct anyone except my small children. There is never and excuse for rudeness. Of course, that is another "old fashioned rule" that has gone by the wayside.

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    4. And excuse? Excuse me, but using snuck won't hurt anyone any more than telling kids they are taking a quiz. Neither of them were words until they became commonplace. That is called evolution of a language. Using 'that's ironic' for something that's not even close to irony is incorrect, using literal to mean figurative is preposterous. A fire truck catching on fire is irony, a rainstorm on a wedding day is just circumstance or bad luck. Literally unable to get out of bed means you better be completely unable to move, or taped onto the mattress, otherwise literally should not even be in the sentence.

      I am not going to pick at you too much for using and excuse because I have made that mistake myself, but please proofread your comments if you want people to take you seriously.

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  8. the exchange between jennifer and conan was cute.

    Snuck was a word invented by rednecks.

    Git'er dun.

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  9. To those that say "snuck" is incorrect please replay the video and watch the part where Conan laughs and realize that he is actually laughing at you.

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  10. Americans butchering the English language? No, never.

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  11. USAGE The traditional standard past form of sneak is sneaked ( : she sneaked around the corner). An alternative past form, snuck ( : she snuck past me), arose in the U.S. in the 19th century. Until very recently, snuck was confined to U.S. dialect use and was regarded as nonstandard, but in the last few decades its use has spread, particularly in the U.S., where it is now generally regarded as a standard alternative to sneaked. In formal contexts, however, sneaked remains the preferred form.

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  12. Whatever may be the history of the word snuck; rednecks, not-so-high-usage-word, mass US usage, certain US dialects etc. What she said was "Snuck isn't a word!", that was dead wrong. I loved the way she snapped, he went speechless for a few moments, but when you are so condescendingly snapping someone, you should make sure you are right! A for her snap, F- for her wrongness, A+ for his laughter!!!!! He deserved the victory laughter.

    Anyway, Jennifer looked lovely all along. Especially, her expression after she was proven wrong. Never have I seen such a sexy squerm...... oops squirm!

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  13. Who cares? She's got the best legs in the world!

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    Replies
    1. there's something we can all agree on.

      at last - consensus

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  15. There is a difference between modifying /updating a language as described above for the purpose of improving it and simply adding an acceptable form of a word(s) because a large portion of its speakers are too lazy or retarded to wrap their distracted brains around the correct use.
    It's a language. Words are spelled and pronounced a specific way (Save minor regional variations) and have distinct meaning(s).
    This reminds me of Indiana where they decided Pi should equal 4.0 .

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  16. Actually it's okay to use either sneaked or snuck as the past tense of sneak. It's just a part of speech. check complete sentences

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    1. Acceptable and correct are not the same. English is clearly not your native language so of course it's easy for you to minimize the value of aspects you have trouble understanding.
      See what I did there? What I said may not be correct, but it is certainly acceptable.

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  19. I loved the way she snapped, he went speechless for a few moments, but when you are so condescendingly snapping someone, you should make sure you are right!

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