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Active and passive voice

Level: beginner

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.

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.

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.

Active and passive voice 1


Active and passive voice 2


Active and passive voice 3


Level: intermediate

The passive infinitive is made up of to be with a past participle:

The doors are going to be locked at ten o'clock.
You shouldn't have done that. You ought to be punished.

We sometimes use the verb get with a past participle to form the passive:

Be careful with that glass. It might get broken.
Peter got hurt in a crash.

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.
Active and passive voice 4


Active and passive voice 5


Level: advanced

Some verbs which are very frequently used in the passive are followed by the to-infinitive:

be supposed to be expected to be asked to be told to
be scheduled to be allowed to be invited to be ordered 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.

Active and passive voice 6


Active and passive voice 7




Simple sentences (present, past and future) are different from simple tenses.

For ex. She is beautiful (simple present sentence)

She goes (simple present tense)

Hi Rsb,

Yes, that's right. Simple sentences are sentences that have only one clause. Simple tenses are tenses that are not continuous. Both the examples you mentioned are simple sentences and have simple tenses.


The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you so much sir!

Hello sir
I am not sure if the selected answer in the following question is correct.
Q. Choose the correct passive sentence.
A. The meeting will be cancelled soon.
B. He got angry when they inquired about his private life.
C. Both (A snd B)
D. A large cake was been left on the table.

Is “He got angry ...” a correct passive voice sentence?
Please help me with this. Thanks

Hello bakh.sh85,

No, that's not a passive form. To make a passive, you need to use be + past participle. It's possible to replace 'be' with 'get' or 'become', but you still need a past participle, and in your sentence 'angry' is an adjective, not a past participle.



The LearnEnglish Team


She always wear pressed uniform.

Here pressed is an adjective?

Can we use also ironed uniform or ironing uniform in place of pressed uniform? Which will be correct ironed or ironing? It will work as an adjective too if we use ironed or ironing?

Hello sir,

1. Glass might be broken.(active voice)
Glass might get broken.(active voice)
Here broken acts as an adjective.

If I say,
Glass might be broken by rahul. (Passive)
Glass might get broken by rahul.( Passive)

It both has the same meaning where broken is a verb 3rd form of break in passive form. We can sometimes use get in place of be in passive form. Am I correct?

2. I was hurt.(active voice)
I got hurt.(Active voice)
Here hurt act as an adjective.

If I say,
I was hurt by rahul. (Passive)
I got hurt by rahul.(Passive)
It both have the same meaning where hurt is a verb 3rd form in passive form. We can sometimes use the get in place of be in passive form . Am I correct?

3.last one is,
Aliyah is hospitalized.(active)
Aliyah gets hospitalized.(active)

Here hospitalized is an adjective?

And if I say,

Aliyah is hospitalized by rahul (passive) and Aliyah gets hospitalized by rahul. Both has the same meaning in passive form as hospitalize acts as main verb here. We use the get in place of be in passive form.

Pls intervene it need your support. Thanks

Hello Rsb,

Yes, 'get' can be used in the place of 'be' in passive forms in informal situations. I'd suggest you think of the verbs 'be' and 'get' in the first pairs of sentences in your examples not as active but rather as link verbs.

Link verbs establish a link between a noun and an adjective or other noun -- they don't have objects (remember that transitive verbs by definition have an object).

All the best,


The LearnEnglish Team

Yes sir it works as linking verb above.

As u suggest link verbs establish a link between a noun and an adjective.
Here broken and hurt is an adjective?

One more things sir, like we say, Aliyah is in hospital mean to say she is hospitalized. Here hospitalized is an adjective or noun?


"I got hurt" -
"I am hurt"
"I was hurt"

here 'hurt' acts as an adjective past participle form?

And if I say, "I was hurt by the seniors in the college" or

"I am hurt by the seniors in the college".
Can we use get in place of be in form of passive construction?

I got hurt by the seniors in the college".
I get hurt by the seniors in the college".
Can 'hurt' function as verb or adjective both?

Hospitalized is also an adjective? For ex. Aliyah is hospitalized.