Active and Passive Voice
Verbs are either active or passive in voice. In the active voice, the subject is the do-er of the action.
In the passive voice, the subject is not the do-er of the action. It is shown with ‘by + do-er’ or is not shown in the sentence. Passive voice is used when the action is the focus, not the subject.
The government built a new bridge. (Active Voice)
A new bridge was built by the government. (Passive Voice)
One can easily rewrite an active sentence to a passive sentence. The object in the active sentence becomes a subject in the passive sentence. The verb is changed to a “be” verb + past participle. The subject of the active sentence follows by or is omitted.
The director will give you instructions. (Active Voice)
Instructions will be given to you by the director. (Passive Voice)
Assertive Sentences / Declarative Sentences contain statements. They state or declare something. If the statement has a ‘yes’ sense, it is an affirmative sentence and, if the statement makes a negative sense, it is a negative sentence.
Everyone will blame us. (Active Voice)
We will be blamed by everyone. (Passive Voice)
Interrogative Sentences are sentences that ask a question. The question form is maintained in the Passive voice. This means that the first auxiliary of the verb is placed before the subject. The Modals (may, might, can, could, will, would, etc.) follow the same pattern.
Could Neha lock the door? (Active Voice)
Could the door be locked by Neha? (Passive Voice)
Imperative sentences give a direct command. It can end in a full stop or an exclamation mark, depending on the forcefulness of the command.
In Active Voice- The subject ‘YOU’ is generally not expressed but understood.
In Passive Voice- The subject ‘YOU’ is expressed and is then followed by the verb ‘are ordered, are requested, are advised, are required’ or such verb that suits the sense.
To’ is added to the verb appearing in the active voice.
In some cases the word ‘let’ is used to introduce the passive sentence and ‘be’ is put before the past participle.
For Example: Carry it home. (Active Voice)
Let it be carried home. (Passive Voice)
For Example: Rose smells sweet. (Active Voice)
Rose is sweet when smelt. (Passive Voice)
Special type of sentences: Sentences where prepositions other than ‘by’ are used with the object.
Flood water fills the town. (Active Voice)
The town is filled with the flood water. (Passive Voice)
In sentences with two clauses, both the clauses are changed into Passive:
The neighbour asked the boy / why he broke the glass. (Active Voice)
The boy was asked by the neighbour / why the glass was broken by him. (Passive Voice)