Passive explanation

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Information about Passive explanation

Published on March 4, 2014

Author: fatih06kgm



Passive explanation


ACTIVE VOICE 'Voice' refers to the relationship between the subject and the verb in a sentence. A sentence is said to be in the active voice if the subject is performing the action of the verb.

PASSIVE VOICE In English, as in many other languages, the passive voice is the form of a transitive verb whose grammatical subject serves as the patient, receiving the action of the verb. English's passive is formed using a form of the auxiliary verb be together with a verb's past participle. Tense Subject Auxiliary Singular Plural Past Participle Present The car/cars is are designed. Present perfect The car/cars has been have been designed. Past The car/cars was were designed. Past perfect The car/cars had been had been designed. Future The car/cars will be will be designed. Future perfect The car/cars will have been will have been designed. Present progressive The car/cars is being are being designed. Past progressive The car/cars was being were being designed.

Use passive instead of active: If the agent is unknown. Denise’s computer was stolen from her office. If the agent is not focus. The new library was finished about a year ago. If the agent is obvious from context. I had an accident yesterday. This other car went through a red light and hit me. My car was completely destroyed. To focus on receiver. Did you hear the news? Matt was injured slightly in the earthquake, but Jeff was O.K. To make general explanations, statements and announcements, or in scientific and technical writing. Passengers are asked to refrain from smoking.

Because we most often use passive verbs to describe situations when the agent is not the primary focus, we usually do not include the agent (by noun phrase) in passive sentences. However, sometimes it is necessary to include the agent. When the agent gives us additional new information. Many important scientific discoveries have been made by women. When information about the agent is too important to omit. Radioactivity was discovered by Marie Curie in 1903. When the agent is surprising or unexpected. That picture was painted by a monkey.



The passive voice is typically contrasted with the active voice, which is the form of a transitive verb whose subject serves as the agent, performing the action of the verb. The subject of a verb in the passive voice corresponds to the object of the same verb in the active voice.

Active Passive Time Reference They make Fords in Cologne. Fords are made in Cologne. Present simple Susan is cooking dinner. Dinner is being cooked by Susan Present continuous James Joyce wrote "Dubliners". "Dubliners" was written by James Joyces. Past simple They were painting the house when I arrived. The house was being painted when I arrived. Past continuous They have produced over 20 models in the past two years. Over 20 models have been produced in the past two years. Present perfect They are going to build a new factory in Portland. A new factory is going to be built Future in Portland. intention with going to I will finish it tomorrow. It will be finished tomorrow. Future simple

If you want to change a passive-voice sentence to active voice, find the agent in a "by the..." phrase, or consider carefully who or what is performing the action expressed in the verb. Make that agent the subject of the sentence, and change the verb accordingly. Sometimes you will need to infer the agent from the surrounding sentences which provide context.

Special cases: Verbs with no passive forms and other verbs with no active forms Some verbs don’t have passive form because they do not take direct objects. This category includes verbs such as: Occur, happen, take place, appear, seem, look, emerge, vanish, disappear, appear, resemble, consist of, collide, etc. Few changes have occurred at Stonehenge over the years. The discovery of Nazca Lines happened in the 1930s. NOT: A ceremonial function was had by these pictures. NOT: Some animals are resembled by the pictures. Jeff was born in Kansas. NOT: Jeff’s mother bore him in Kansas.

A stative verb, generally, cannot be made into a passive sentence. However, some stative verbs have "active" forms in which the verb has another meaning. Stative verb: "weigh" Intransitive Verb Transitive Verb Arnold weighs 250 lbs. (stative) The doctor weighed the baby. (active) (no passive possible) The baby was weighed by the doctor. EXAMPLE Active Passive Some verbs have different meaning when in the passive voice: Passive The College of San Mateo is located on a hilltop. (exists) Active The Board of Regents voted to locate the new college on a hilltop. (situate / build) Active The police located the lost child. (found)

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