The Past Tense of Feed: Here’s What It Is and How to Use It

Have you ever got stuck on the correct past tense of the word feed in English grammar? This article will explain the conjugations of the word feed and also define feed and give you all the information you need about the word to master it in the English language.

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What Is the Definition of the Word Feed?

The English verb feed is defined as:

Intransitive verb 

  • (especially of animals) to take food; eat: 
    • cows feeding in a meadow; to feed well.
  • to be nourished or gratified; subsist: 
    • to feed on grass; to feed on thoughts of revenge.

Transitive verb 

  • to give food to; supply with nourishment: 
    • to feed a child.
  • to yield or serve as food for: 
    • This land has fed 10 generations.
  • to provide as food.
  • to furnish for consumption.
  • to satisfy; minister to; gratify: 
    • Poetry feeds the imagination.
  • to supply for maintenance or operation, as to a machine: 
    • to feed paper into a photocopier.
  • to provide with the necessary materials for development, maintenance, or operation: 
    • to feed a printing press with paper.
  • to use (land) as pasture.


  • food, especially for farm animals, as cattle, horses or chickens.
  • an allowance, portion, or supply of such food.
  • Informal. a meal, especially a lavish one.
  • the act of feeding.
  • the act or process of feeding a furnace, machine, etc.
  • the material, or the amount of it, so fed or supplied.
  • a feeding mechanism.
  • Electricity.
  • Theater Informal. 
    • a line spoken by one actor, the response to which by another actor is expected to cause laughter.
    • an actor, especially a straight man, who provides such lines.
    • a local television broadcast distributed by satellite or network to a much wider audience, especially nationwide or international.
  • Digital Technology. 
    • a website or application that publishes updates from social media or news-collection websites in reverse chronological order: 
      • I follow all of the latest celebrity gossip in my Twitter feed.
    • an XML-based web document that is updated automatically at predetermined intervals and includes descriptive titles or short descriptions and links to recent pages on a website: 
      • Subscribe to news feeds to get the latest news from around the world.

What Is the Past Tense of Feed?

The past tense of feed is feed. This would be used in a sentence like: 

I fed the animals on my grandfather’s farm each morning while staying with them this summer. 

How Do You Conjugate Feed?

Here are some verb conjugations of the irregular verb feed including the past tense verb forms:

Base Form/Infinitive: To feed

Past Participle: Fed

Present Participle/Gerund: Feeding

Simple Present TenseSimple Past TenseFuture Tense
I feedfedAm feeding
You feedfedAre feeding
He/she/it feedsfedIs feeding
We feedfedAre feeding
They feedfedAre feeding

The History and Origin of the Word

The word feed has been used since at least 950. In Middle English, it was spelled feden, in Old English fedan, and in Old Saxon, it was spelled fodian. 

Synonyms of Feed

  • Fodder – coarse food for livestock, composed of entire plants, including leaves, stalks, and grain, of such forages as corn and sorghum
  • Forage – food for horses or cattle; fodder; provender.
  • Provender – dry food, as hay or oats, for livestock or other domestic animals; fodder.

Example Sentences of the Word in Context


Next time you need to write the word feed, you will be well prepared for everything you need to know what it is and how to use it efficiently. You should feel confident with the different conjugations, the history of the word, and the definition.