How to use Passive voice in English
Compare these two English sentences:
= "The doctor gave me a
= "I was given a
In the first sentence, the focus is on 'the doctor'. In the second
sentence, the focus is on 'I'.
When to use the
In the passive sentence above, we can make the object and action ('me'
and 'gave a prescription') more important than the subject ('the
"My bicycle has been stolen" - I don't know who has stolen it.
"The lights were left on all night." (I don't want to say that you left
the lights on.)
"I was given a prescription" - I know that only doctors give
prescriptions, so I don't need to add "by the doctor".
"He was arrested" I know that the police arrest people, so I don't need
to add "by the police".
Forming a passive
sentence in English
Firstly, you need to make the object into the new subject.
Then you make the verb passive.
Put the verb "to be" into the same tense as the verb in the active
subject. For example "gave" is the past simple tense. The past simple
form of "to be" is "was" or "were".
Then add the past participle of the verb. For example "gave" - "given".
Prepositions and adjectives