113. Verbs that Cannot Be Passive

This is a very useful guide for us to learn about what verbs cannot be made into the passive voice. I’ll have a close read and make a tutorial on this very soon — I’m teaching passive voice the coming week.



Some verbs have no passive form, but the functions of the passive can be achieved by using a different verb


English passive verbs typically comprise some form of BE and a “past” participle. Examples (with the BE part underlined) are is understood, was helped, were being copied, can be taken and should have been known. Sometimes BE is replaced by BECOME or informal GET, e.g. got hit, or even dropped altogether (see 192. When BE can be Omitted). Verbs that are not passive are usually called “active”.

Verbs vary in the choices they offer concerning the passive form. One type (e.g. SAY) is compulsorily passive with a particular type of subject noun (messages instead of speakers). Another type (e.g. INCREASE) can be active with any type of subject, but can also sometimes be passive (see 4. Verbs that…

View original post 1,849 more words

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s