Difference Wiki

Got vs. Gotten: What's the Difference?

Edited by Huma Saeed || By Sumera Saeed || Updated on October 19, 2023
"Got" is the past tense of "get," while "gotten" is the past participle used in American English.

Key Differences

Got is the simple past tense form of the verb "get." It indicates a completed action that happened in the past. Gotten, conversely, is the past participle form of "get" used primarily in American English to indicate something obtained or received.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023
In British English, "got" serves as both the simple past and the past participle form of "get." This contrasts with American English, where "got" is the simple past and gotten is the past participle.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023
When expressing possession, both American and British English commonly use "have got." However, in the context of having received something, American English might use "have gotten," while British English would stick with "have got."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023
The use of "got" or "gotten" can change the meaning of a sentence in American English. For instance, "I've got a book" implies possession, while "I've gotten a book" implies that the book was recently acquired.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023
It's important to note that the distinction between "got" and "gotten" is mainly prevalent in American English. In other English-speaking regions, the use of "got" as a past participle is more standard, making the differentiation less prominent.
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Form

Simple past tense of "get."
Past participle of "get" in American English.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

British Usage

Serves as both simple past and past participle.
Rarely used.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

American Usage

Used for possession or completion.
Used to indicate acquisition or change.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Example 1

"I got the mail."
"I have gotten the mail."
Harlon Moss
Oct 19, 2023

Example 2

"They got a new car last year."
"They have gotten better at playing soccer."
Aimie Carlson
Oct 19, 2023
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Got and Gotten Definitions

Got

Got can mean to have contracted an illness.
He got the flu.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 19, 2023

Gotten

Gotten can mean to have understood or realized.
I've gotten the point of the story.
Huma Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Got

Got can mean to understand something.
I got the joke.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Gotten

Gotten can indicate a yield or produce.
We have gotten good results from the experiment.
Harlon Moss
Oct 19, 2023

Got

Got can indicate possession.
I've got a pen.
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023

Gotten

Gotten can mean to have engaged in an activity.
He has gotten into trouble.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Got

Got can mean to have received something.
I got your letter yesterday.
Huma Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Gotten

Gotten can indicate reaching a state or condition.
Things have gotten complicated.
Harlon Moss
Oct 19, 2023

Got

Got can indicate arrival.
I just got home.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Gotten

Gotten can mean to have acquired or received.
She has gotten a new dress.
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023

Got

Past tense and a past participle of get1.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 08, 2019

Gotten

A past participle of get1.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 08, 2019

Got

Expressing obligation; used with have.
I can't go out tonight: I've got to study for my exams.
Sumera Saeed
Aug 08, 2019

Gotten

Inflection of get
Sumera Saeed
Aug 08, 2019

Gotten

(mostly in combination) obtained, acquired
Sumera Saeed
Aug 08, 2019

FAQs

Is "got" the past tense of "get"?

Yes, "got" is the simple past tense of "get."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Is there a difference between "I've got a book" and "I've gotten a book"?

Yes, in American English, the first implies possession, and the second implies recent acquisition.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 19, 2023

Can "got" indicate possession?

Yes, "I've got" can mean "I have" to indicate possession.
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023

What does "gotten" represent?

"Gotten" is the past participle of "get" in American English.
Huma Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Does "gotten" always indicate the past?

It indicates a relation to the past, especially when paired with "have" or "has."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Is "gotten" an old form of the verb?

While it sounds archaic, "gotten" is standard in American English as the past participle.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Is "got" used to indicate arrival?

Yes, as in "I just got home."
Harlon Moss
Oct 19, 2023

Can "got" indicate an illness?

Yes, like in "He got sick."
Harlon Moss
Oct 19, 2023

Is "got" always the preferred form in British English?

For most past references, yes. "Gotten" is rare in British English.
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023

Does "gotten" always follow "have" or "has"?

Typically, yes. "Gotten" is used with "have" or "has" to form the present perfect tense.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Can "gotten" mean to have reached a state?

Yes, like in "Things have gotten worse."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Can "got" indicate understanding?

Yes, as in "I got the joke."
Janet White
Oct 19, 2023

Can "got" and "gotten" be used interchangeably in American English?

Not always. While both relate to "get," their usages can differ based on context.
Janet White
Oct 19, 2023

Is "gotten" commonly used in British English?

No, British English typically uses "got" as both the past tense and past participle.
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Is "gotten" used to talk about results?

Yes, such as in "We've gotten good feedback."
Aimie Carlson
Oct 19, 2023

Is "got" ever used as a standalone verb in British English?

Yes, as in "I got your message."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Can "gotten" indicate engagement in an activity?

Yes, as in "He's gotten into painting."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Does "got" always need "have" before it?

No, "got" can stand alone as the simple past, like "I got it."
Sumera Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

What is the infinitive form of "got" and "gotten"?

Both derive from the verb "get."
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023

Can "gotten" mean to understand?

Yes, in phrases like "I've gotten the point."
Sara Rehman
Oct 19, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.
Edited by
Huma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.

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