Print

Print


> Eldin Raigmore <eldin_raigmore@...> wrote:

> In English the verb "melt" has two passive perfect participles; to 
> wit, "molten" and "melted". When is it more appropriate to 
> use "molten" than "melted", and when is it more appropriate to 
> use "melted" than "molten"? Are there any circumstances in which 
only > one is appropriate?  If so, what circumstances, and which one 
is
> appropriate?

Wow!  This seems to me to be an instance of having to learn by usage; 
there are no rules.  "Molten" seems to be more 'industrial.' 
Sometimes "molten" means in a liquid state, molten lava.  Sometimes 
it means made from a melted substance, a molten image.

"Melt" is not the only verb in English to have two acceptable perfect 
passive participles, one strong and one weak: abided, abode; bereft, 
bereaved; besought, beseeched; bid, bidden; cleft, cloven; clothed, 
clad; girded, girt; heaved, hove; hewn, hewed; lit, lighted; rived, 
riven; sheared, shorn; shrived, shriven; sped, speeded; staved, 
stove; strived, striven; swelled, swollen; wak(en)ed, woken; worked, 
wrought; to list a few.  Some are obsolescent, some are used 
primarily as adjectives.

Charlie

P.S. I have great respect for a man who knows how and when to use "to 
wit"!