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

If you have ever been curious about the english language correct past tense of hang, this article will clear that up plus give you a look into the history of the word, the definition, and everything else you could want to learn about the word. 

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What is the Definition of the Word Hang?

The word hang is defined as:

  • the manner in which a thing is poised when suspended from above without support from below: the way in which a thing hangs (see HANG entry 1
    • the hang of an inanimate object, such as a skirt
    • Can sometimes be referred to as the capital punishment of a hanged man/ human beings
    • also: DROOP
    • the hang of his lower lip 
  • facility with or an understanding of something 
    • can’t get the hang of this
  • a hesitation or slackening in motion or in a course 
    • a marked hang of the oar in the air before it dipped
  • give a hang or care a hang
    • to be the least bit concerned or worried 
    • She doesn’t give a hang whether she wins or not.

How do you Conjugate Hang?

Here are the other english grammar conjugations of the word hang:

Base Form (Infinitive) Hang 
Simple Past Tense FormHung/ Hanged
Past Participle of HangHung/ Hanged
3rd Person SingularHangs
Present Participle/ Present TenseHanging 

Hang vrs. Hung: A Usage Guide

Is it hang or hung? Both english verbs are considered the standard in modern english but hanged is considered the most appropriate use in official executions for example: “ he/she was to be hanged (as a hangman), cut down while still alive … and his bowels torn out   — Louis Allen.” This is where it gets tricky because hung is also frequently used in the same context for example: “ gave orders that she should be hung — Peter Quennell.”  For informal executions, use hung. 

The History and Origin of the Word


The word hang comes from the Proto-Germanic word hanganan from the PIE root konk, meaning to hang. The term was originally used exclusively for executions, originally crucifixion, until the 1500s. The phrase to hang back meaning reluctant to proceed was used. In the 1700s the term hang fire was used to describe guns that were slow to fire due to mechanical malfunction. Hang around became popular in the 1800s meaning to idle or loiter. In the 1900s the term let it all hang out became popular, meaning to relax. 


In the 1500s, hang meant a sling. In the 1700s, this evolved into the way clothe hangs, for example, a curtain. To get the hang of something, meaning to become capable, was a common phrase in the 1800s, but its origin is unknown. It is thought to come from the English word hank, meaning a habit. 

Synonyms for Hang

  • Dangle- to hang loosely and usually so as to be able to swing freely
    • to be a hanger-on or a dependent
  • Suspend-  HANG
    • especially: to hang so as to be free on all sides except at the point of support 
    • suspend a ball by a thread
    • to keep from falling or sinking by some invisible support (such as buoyancy) 
    • dust suspended in the air
  • Declension- a falling off or away: DETERIORATION
  • Fall- to descend freely by the force of gravity
    • An apple fell from the tree.
    • to hang freely 
    • her hair falls over her shoulders
  • Swing- to suspend so as to permit swaying or turning
    • to convey by suspension 
    • cranes swinging cargo into the ship’s hold
  • Sling- to cast with a sudden and usually sweeping or swirling motion 
    • slung the sack over my shoulder
  • Dip-  to plunge or immerse momentarily or partially under the surface (as of a liquid) so as to moisten, cool, or coat 
    • dip candles

Example Sentences With the Word Hang


  • He hung the painting on the wall. 
  •  We hung paper lanterns from the trees.


  • the hang of a skirt 
  •  anyone foolish enough to ski that hang would end up with a broken neck

Examples of the Word in Context


Next time you need to write the word hang, 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.