Friday, December 7, 2012

active and passive voice

Transitive verbs have both active and passive forms:
active   passive
The hunter killed the lion. >> The lion was killed by the hunter.
Someone has cleaned the windows >> The windows have been cleaned

The passive forms are made up of the verb be with a past participle:
  be past participle  
English is spoken all over the world
The windows have been cleaned  
Lunch was being served  
The work will be finished soon
They might have been invited to the party

We sometimes use the verb get to form the passive:
Be careful with the glass. It might get broken.
Peter got hurt in a crash.
If we want to show the person or thing doing the action we use by:
She was attacked by a dangerous dog.
The money was stolen by her husband.
We can use the indirect object as the subject of a passive verb:
active   passive
I gave him a book for his birthday >> He was given a book for his birthday.
Someone sent her a cheque for a thousand euros >> She was sent a cheque for a thousand euros.

We can use phrasal verbs in the passive:
active   passive
They called off the meeting. >> The meeting was called off.
His grandmother looked after him. >> He was looked after by his grandmother.
They will send him away to school. >> He will be sent away to school.
Some verbs very frequently used in the passive are followed by the to-infinitive:
be supposed to be expected to be asked to
be scheduled to be allowed to be told to
John has been asked to make a speech at the meeting.
You are supposed to wear a uniform.
The meeting is scheduled to start at seven.

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