stink / stank / stunk. So inflected. *Stinked is a dialectal past tense and past participle. "Stunk" often appears erroneously as a simple-past form, especially in figurative uses — e.g.: o "When I coached, the calls stunk [read 'stank'] then and the calls stink now." Howard Manly, "Patriots, Ch. 4 Winners," Boston Globe, 8 Dec. 1998, at E5. o "The Patriots stunk [read 'stank']." Steve Buckley, "Blow a Gasket, Pete," Boston Herald, 28 Dec. 1998, at 100. o "Your timing stunk [read 'stank']." David Landis, "Beat the Street," Kiplinger's Personal Finance, 1 Feb. 2003, at 56. Language-Change Index — (1) *"stinked" as past tense of "stink": Stage 1; (2) "stunk" for simple-past "stank": Stage 4. *Invariably inferior forms. ——————– Quotation of the Day: "There can be little question that good composition is far less dependent upon acquaintance with the laws, than upon practice and natural aptitude. A clear head, a quick imagination, and a sensitive ear, will go far towards making all rhetoric precepts needless. He who daily hears and reads well-framed sentences, will naturally more or less tend to use similar ones." Herbert Spencer, The Philosophy of Style (1871), reprinted in Problems and Styles of Communication 166 (1945).