INTERMEDIATE GRAMMAR

active/passive (page 1)


 


How can we tell if a sentence is active or passive?

The tiger ate the sheep.
1. What is the verb? – ate
2. Who or what ate something? – the tiger
We know who did the action so we know this is an active sentence.
(The subject does the action in an active sentence.)

The bridge was built in 1864.
1. What is the verb? – was built
2. Who or what built something? – don’t know!!
We don’t know who did the action so this is a passive sentence.
(The subject receives the action in a passive sentence.)