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Re: USAGE: YAEUT: "Molten" vs. "Melted"

From:caeruleancentaur <caeruleancentaur@...>
Date:Monday, October 13, 2008, 18:47
> 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"!