Grammarians may have noticed a misused verb in the first sentence of a story Monday about the Captain John S. Pope Farm in northern Orange County:
“Thomas Crisp Jr. stood at the edge of a wire fence Friday morning in northern Orange County, two bales of hay laying at his feet.”
Two readers took the time to email me about the error - using "laying" instead of "lying" - that was edited into the story late Sunday.
“Kindly assist in teaching by example the uses of lie-lay,” reader Wendy Smith wrote in an email.
For the record: The verb “lay” and its derivatives – laid and laying – require an active voice and a direct object (a person, place or thing). For example, “she laid the bales of hay at his feet.”
However, the verb “lie” and its derivatives – lay, lain, lying – take an indirect object: “The bales of hay were lying at his feet.”
As a former copy editor, I know how easy it is to make mistakes when you’re pressed for time. We stand corrected.