The passive voice is used when focusing on the person or thing affected by an action.
* The Passive is formed: Passive Subject To Be PastParticple
* It is often used in business and in other areas where the object of the action is more important than those who perform the action. For Example: Wehave produced over 20 different models in the past two years. Changes to: Over 20 different models have been produced in the past two years.
* If the agent (theperformer of the action) is important, use "by" For Example: Tim Wilson wrote "The Flight to Brunnswick" in 1987. Changes to:"The Flight to Brunnswick" was writtenin 1987 by Tim Wilson.
* Only verbs that take an object can be used in the passive.
The following chart includes sentences changed from the active to thepassive in the principal tenses.
Active | Passive | Time Reference |
They make Fords in Cologne. | Fords are made in Cologne. | Present Simple |
Susan iscooking dinner. | Dinner is being cooked by Susan | Present Continuous |
James Joyce wrote "Dubliners". | "Dubliners" was written by James Joyces. | PastSimple |
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 thepast 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 newfactory is going to be built in Portland. | Future Intention with Going to |
I will finish it tomorrow. | It will be finished tomorrow. | Future Simple |