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Passive Voice & Active Voice


To learn Passive Voice, you should know the following Grammar Sections:

  1. Irregular Verb Forms.
  2. Subject – Verb – Object Order.

Passive Voice is the reverse mode of a normal sentence (active voice).

  • In the sentence, “Sam loved Mary,” Sam > loved > Mary is active voice because the order is Subject > Verb > Object.
    • Who loved? Sam.
    • What did Sam do? Loved
    • Whom did Sam love? Mary
  • In passive, the order changes to Object > auxiliary verbVerb > by > Subject, i.e., “Mary is loved by Sam.
Try This!
  1. Ram makes kites.
  2. My father loves me.
  3. Stella writes novels.
  4. My friends bought a new cricket bat.
  5. I make tasty tea.


  1. Kites are made by Ram.
  2. I am loved by my father.
  3. Novels are written by Stella.
  4. A new cricket bat was bought by my friends.
  5. Tasty tea is made by me.
Try This

Note that there are 2 objects in the following sentences. In the first, me and English are the 2 objects. Here, we have to start with the more important object. So, “me” is more important than English because a human being is more important than a language.

  1. My mother teaches me¹ English².
  2. They made him¹ their king².
  3. Sanjana gifted her brother¹ an elephant².
  4. Mother told me¹ a new story².


  1. I am taught English by my mother.
  2. He was made their king by them.
  3. Her brother was gifted an elephant by Sanjana.
  4. I was told a new story by mother.

Try This

  1. I know your name. (is/am/are) : Your name is known to/by me.
  2. We grow berries on this hill. (is/am/are) : Berries are grown on this hill.
  3. She loves her parents. (is/am/are) : Her parents are loved by her.
  4. Raju broke my legs. (was/were) : My legs were broken by Raju.
  5. I drove this car. (was/were) : This car was driven by me.
Next – Tense-wise Examples

Simple Present – Be + V3

  • I read novels – Novels are read by me.
  • We grow rice – Rice is grown by us.
  • She runs a shop – A shop is run by her.

Present Continuous – is/are/am + Being + V³

  • We are watering our plants. – Our plants are being watered.
  • He is selling eggs. – Eggs are being sold by him.
  • The beaver is eating trees. – Trees are being eaten by the beaver.

Present Perfect | Has/have been + V³

  • She has told me that story – I have been told that story by her.
  • He has sold eggs – Eggs have been sold by him.
  • The beaver has eaten the trees – Trees have been eaten by the beaver.

Simple Past | was/were + 

  • We invited the President – The President was invited by us.
  • He sold eggs – Eggs were sold by him.
  • The beaver ate the trees – Trees were eaten by the beaver.

Past Continuous | was/were being + V³

  • He was reading this book – This book was being read by him.
  • He was selling books – Books were being sold by him.
  • The beaver was eating the trees – The trees were being eaten by the beaver.

Past Perfect | had been + V³

  • Sam had planted this tree – This tree had been planted by Sam.
  • He had sold books – Books had been sold by him.
  • The beaver had eaten the trees – Trees had been eaten by the beaver.

Simple Future | will/shall + be + V³

  • They will bring the news – The news will be brought by them.
  • He will sell books – Books will be sold by him.
  • The beaver will eat the trees – The trees will be eaten by the beaver.

Future Continuous | will be + beings + 

  • She will be baking the cake – The cake will be being baked by her.
  • He will be selling books – Books will be being sold by him.
  • The beaver will be eating the books – The books will be being eaten by the beaver.

Practice Questions | With Answers

  1. I brought home some small fish.
    Some small fish were brought home by me.
  2. She fed us reasonably.
    We were fed reasonably by her.
  3. The French eat frog legs while the Chinese eat frogs.
    Frog-legs are eaten by the French while frogs are eaten by the Chinese.
  4. They labelled the crates.
    The crates were labelled.
  5. Granny hired some laborers to empty the lily pond.
    Some laborers were hired to empty the lily pond by Granny.
  6. I pulled the flush chain.
    The flush chain was pulled by me.

Next – Golden Rules

  • When active sentence is converted to passive, the TENSE remains the same.
  • Always the passive verb form is V3 or the third form of the verb.
  • Passive voice begins with the object of the sentence. That is, “Sam drives a new car” becomes “A new car is driven by Sam.” Note that Sam comes last and Car comes first.
  • Continuous tenses take “being+V3”
    • I am writing a story.
  • Perfect tenses take “Been.”
    • “She has broken the record” becomes “The record has been broken by her. Note Has+been+V3.
Be Family
  • Is it solving your problem?
  • Are they selling beans?
  • Was it troubling you?
  • Will Arjun marry her?
  • Is your problem being solved by it?
  • Are beans being sold by them?
  • Were you being troubled by them?
  • Will she be married by Arjun?
H Family

H > Be

  • Have they solved the problem?
  • Has she completed the work?
  • Had they destroyed our town?
  • Has the problem been solved by them?
  • Has the work been completed by her?
  • Had our town been destroyed by them?
M Family
Can, could;
May, might;
Should, must.

M > Be

  • Can they solve your problem?
  • Could they repair my car?
  • Should they close the door?
  • Must the court send him to jail?
  • Can your problem be solved by them?
  • Could my car be repaired by them?
  • Should the door be closed by them?
  • Must he be sent to the jail by the court?
D Family

D > Be

  • Do they solve your problems?
  • Does he advise you?
  • Did Geeta marry him again?
  • Are your problems solved by them?
  • Are you advised by him?
  • Was he again married to Geeta?

Type 1 – Statements

  1. They invited some beggars.
  2. He abused my brother.
  3. We enjoy helping others.
  4. I gave him a punch. (Begin with the main object, that is, “Him/he”)
  5. The baby spilled a glass of water.
  6. They sell oranges. (sell – sold – sold)
  7. My cousins are riding cycles. (ride -rode – ridden)
  8. Her father treats cancer patients. (treat – treated – treated)
  9. Madhu is digging out a pit. (dig – dug – dug)
  10. She is buying a new car. (buy – bought – bought)


  1. Some beggars were invited by them
  2. My brother was abused by him.
  3. Helping others is enjoyed by us.
  4. He was given a punch.
  5. A glass of water was spilled by the baby.
  6. Oranges are sold by them.
  7. Cycles are being ridden by my cousins.
  8. Cancer patients are treated by her father.
  9. A pit is being dug out by Madhu.
  10. A new car is being bought by her.


  1. My uncle has brought a puppy. (bring – brought – brought)
  2. We find this bird only in September.
  3. They sold oranges. (sell – sold – sold)
  4. My cousins were riding cycles. (ride -rode – ridden)
  5. Her father treated cancer patients. (treat – treated – treated)
  6. Madhu was digging out a pit. (dig – dug – dug)
  7. She was buying a new car. (buy – bought – bought)
  8. My uncle had brought a puppy. (bring – brought – brought)
  9. We found this bird only in September.
  10. They will sell oranges. (sell – sold – sold)


  1. A puppy has been bought by my uncle.
  2. This bird is found only in September.
  3. Oranges were sold by them.
  4. Cycles were being ridden by my cousins.
  5. Cancer patients were treated by her father.
  6. A pit was being dug out by Madhu.
  7. A new car was being bought by her.
  8. A puppy had been bought by my uncle.
  9. This bird was found only in September.
  10. Oranges will be sold by them.


  1. My cousins will be riding cycles. (ride -rode – ridden)
  2. Her father will treat cancer patients. (treat – treated – treated)
  3. Madhu will be digging a pit. (dig – dug – dug)
  4. She will be buying a new car. (buy – bought – bought)
  5. My uncle will have brought a puppy. (bring – brought – brought
  6. I can tell you what you want now.
  7. I will tell you how I got this name.
  8. She told me that she loved my voice.
  9. No one gave me an advice.
  10. Well, you will win your prize.


  1. Cycles will be being ridden by my cousins.
  2. Cancer patients will be treated by her father.
  3. A pit will be being dub by Madhu.
  4. A new car will be being bought by her.
  5. A puppy will have been brought by my uncle.
  6. What you want now can be told by me.
  7. You will be told how I got this name.
  8. I was told by her that she loved my voice.
  9. I was given an advice by no one.
  10. Well, your prize will be won.
Practice Questions
  1. We accepted his invitation.
  2. His dinner surprised us.
  3. We ate all the snacks and drank all the juices.
  4. He gave us a special drink that we never had drunk.
  5. After the dinner he took us to the river bank.

Next – Type 2 – Questions

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Speech Writing

Anthem for Doomed Youth – Wilfred Owen