Student or Learner
the sentence "She was bought a house by him" is gramatically wrong? If it is wrong, what is the reason for that?
I understand that "He bought a house for her" is more natural than "She was bought a house by him".
But I just wanted to know whether "she was bought a house by him" is gramatically wrong or not even though it isn't used generally.
I heard that the expression "she was bought" is awkward because it means "she was sold".
But "she was bought" doesn't sound "she was sold" to me because "he bought a house for her" means " he bought a house and gave a house to her"
Last edited by seleehong; 28-Aug-2014 at 06:33.
I'm not sure I'd agree entirely - or anyway, if grammatical it's not logically satisfactory. "A house was bought by him for her' - that works. The 'by' tells you more about the doer of the 'was' verb. I know he was the buyer in both cases but the 'was' and the 'by' are either side of a participle in my version, so the meaning is clear. But when you've got a verb that takes two objects I feel 'She was bought a house by him' is saking to much of both the wore 'by' and the reader/listener. In any case, I'm sure nobody would ever say it (except maybe a student parading their knowledge of the 'she was bought' form).
BNC records only 3 cases of 'she was bought by', and in all 3 cases buy is used in the single-object sense.
Last edited by BobK; 28-Aug-2014 at 21:34. Reason: PS added
"He bought a house for her." (He was her agent.)
"She was bought a house by him."
Grammatical correctness does not necessarily mean that a form is used.