To Take, To Last – learn their different English meanings

to take
to last

We use both these verbs to talk about the length of time things continue.
Take is more frequent than last and we use it to talk about the time required to do something – the time that is necessary. We use last more generally to say how long something continues.
Here are two videos. The first one explains how to use the verb last and the second one compares last with take. If you’d like to see a video that’s just about the verb take click here.

Video 1 – to last

To see this video with a clickable transcript, click here.
Click here for a video that’s just about the verb take.

Do you want to play a game?
Yeah.
OK. You take a sweet and I’ll take a sweet.
You mean candy.
Uhuh. No, no, no, stop. We put them in our mouths at the same time. The winner is the person who makes their sweet last the longest.
It’s not how fast I can eat it?
No, it’s the opposite.
So I need to make it last a long time?
That’s right. OK. Ready, set, go.

We use ‘last’ to say how long things continue.

The flowers have died.
I know. They only lasted a week.

Lovely weather.
Yeah, but how long is it going to last?

Use ‘last’ with ‘how long’ to ask about the time things continue. You can ask about the future, about the present, and about the past. Of course some things don’t last long.

Do you want to hear my new year’s resolutions?
OK.
I’m going to get up every morning at five o’clock. I’m going to work out and I’m going to walk the dog.
Good for you! Her new year’s resolutions never last very long.

We also use ‘last’ to say we have enough of something – or not.

I bought a big pack of paper towels.
Great! They’ll last for ages.

We need more milk.
We have some. But not enough to last a week.

So don’t forget. ‘last’ is about the time things continue. But don’t stop here. This video is part of a set of three videos. Check the comments below to find links to the other two.

Video 2 – Last vs Take

This video is the third in a set of three video.
1. to take
2. to last
3. to take vs. to last
Watch the other two videos first if you can.

We can use both ‘take’ and ‘last’ to talk about the length of time something continues, so how are they different?

We’ve got a problem.
What’s the matter?
I forgot to charge the other camera battery.
Oh, how long will that one last?
I don’t know. Maybe half an hour?
Let’s get to work then.
OK.

So the battery will last about half an hour. That’s how long it will continue to supply power.

How long does it take to charge this battery?
About four hours.
Oh.

So the battery will take about four hours to charge. That’s the time required to fill it up with electricity.

It takes four hours to charge this camera battery. When it’s fully charged, it will last about two hours.

It’s bad news. We need to extract the tooth.
Take it out? How long will it take and how much will it cost?
Five minutes and five thousand dollars.
Five thousand dollars for a five minute tooth extraction?
I can make it last longer, if you like.

So ‘take’ is about the time that’s needed to do things.

How long will it take and how much will it cost? Five minutes and thousand dollars.

‘Last’ is about the time they continue.

I can make it last longer, if you like.

How long does this video last, Jay?
Under three minutes I think.
Wow! Fantastic!
Why?
Because it takes less than three minutes to learn the difference between ‘take’ and ‘last’.
Terrific!

I could make it last longer if you’d like.

Click here to see this video with a clickable transcript.
If you’d like to see a video that’s just about the verb take click here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.