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  1. #1
    Hanem's Avatar
    Hanem is offline Newbie
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    Passive voice

    I am trying to find out which one of these sentences in passive is correct and why?

    Active: I had been reading an article.

    Passive: An article had been being read by me.
    Passive: An article had been read by me.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Abstract Idea is offline Key Member
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    Re: Passive voice

    ----- I am not an ESL teacher -----

    Quote Originally Posted by Hanem View Post
    I am trying to find out which one of these sentences in passive is correct and why?

    Active: I had been reading an article.

    Passive: An article had been being read by me.
    Passive: An article had been read by me.

    Thanks
    Technically the correct passive voice version should read:
    An article had been being read (by me).
    Use the verb to be in the same tense (past perfect continuous) as the main verb in the active version.

    But a sentence like this is seldom heard in everyday English.


    The active version for your second option is:
    I had read an article.

  3. #3
    Hanem's Avatar
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    Re: Passive voice

    Well, I was doing an exercise on passive voice on internet. As I put ''An article had been being read by me. It says there that it is not correct. When I asked for help it showed me the other sentence without ''being''. I wanted to make sure because I was suspecting the same. But the computer says different than what I think and you do too.

    Here's the explanation that I got on that. It says: In active voice the sentence is in past perfect progressive. That tense does not exist in passive voice, so we use past perfect simple.

    I have never known that there are less tenses for passive than active voice! Can anyone explain this, please?

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    Abstract Idea is offline Key Member
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    Re: Passive voice

    Quote Originally Posted by Hanem View Post

    Here's the explanation that I got on that. It says: In active voice the sentence is in past perfect progressive. That tense does not exist in passive voice, so we use past perfect simple.
    Hmm, this is new to me also.
    Anyway, as I said before, the sentence "An article had been being read (by me)" may be everything but natural English. I consider it just as a formal exercise regarding the machinery of active/passive voice transformation, no one uses it for communicative purposes - I can't imagine anyone saying it in any natural situation.
    Indeed there are many sentences which do not suit well in the passive form, see
    https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/a...e-passive.html or https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/a...-sentence.html for instance.

    I can't remember any (natural) passive voice with past perfect progressive right now.

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    Abstract Idea is offline Key Member
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    Re: Passive voice

    I have just searched for "had been being" (with the inverted commas) in google.
    It is interesting to observe that:
    (i) The number of matches is really low.
    (ii) The majority of occurrences comes from English grammar related sites, many discussing passive voice formation.

  6. #6
    Hanem's Avatar
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    Re: Passive voice

    I've got your point ymnisky, sometimes there's no need to try and exercise something that people very rarely use but the thing is that I am trying to exercise as much as I can and learn so i don't get confused in my test.

    Anyhow, thanks a lot for all you effort. By the way, i have read some other posts by you and all i can say is my compliments to you for explaining things clearly for others to understand.
    cheers!

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