Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12
  1. newbie10's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Bengali; Bangla
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Feb 2010
    • Posts: 41
    #1

    In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Hi,

    Could you please explain in which verb forms "to" is used before Agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice.

    For example: The Passive Voice form of "I know him" is "He is known to me" NOT "He is known by me"
    So, as per my knowledge, this method is used for the verbs like know, expect, want etc.

    Kindly explain..

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Jun 2010
    • Posts: 24,515
    #2

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    I'd say that 'He is known to me' is a special case and is not an example of the passive voice.

    The verbs 'expect' and 'want' take 'by' in the passive.

  2. newbie10's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Bengali; Bangla
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Feb 2010
    • Posts: 41
    #3

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Hi
    Thanks for your explanation. I can not remember but I have read such patterns in some writings or books where 'to' has been used before agent instead of traditional 'by' and that makes me curious to find out the correct answer. Are there any other verbs that demand 'to' instead of 'by' ?

    Plz elucidate..

  3. Barb_D's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 19,221
    #4

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    This is not a rule that I am aware of. I suggest you use "by" for your passive sentences, but even more so, I suggest you avoid passive sentences unless you have a very good reason for using one. When you know and want to identify the agent, you probably don't want the passive.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  4. newbie10's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Bengali; Bangla
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Feb 2010
    • Posts: 41
    #5

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Hi
    Thanks Barb_D for your sincere reply and considering my issue an inevitable question for the learners. We have come here to share our confusions and learn. This is of course a serious issue I realised and thus sought for proper explanation. I will try to avoid useless use of passive forms in such cases.
    Regards

  5. Matthew Wai's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Nov 2013
    • Posts: 7,844
    #6

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    'He is known to me' is a special case and is not an example of the passive voice.
    Then is 'known' an adjective here?

  6. MikeNewYork's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 24,983
    #7

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    I would say yes.

  7. newbie10's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Bengali; Bangla
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Feb 2010
    • Posts: 41
    #8

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Thanks Matthew Wai and MikeNewYork for sharing your views. The point should be considered that "known" is an adjective and thus "He is known to me" is not a passive but simple active form. The ACTUAL passive form is "he is known by me."

    Regards

  8. Matthew Wai's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Nov 2013
    • Posts: 7,844
    #9

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Quote Originally Posted by newbie10 View Post
    "known" is an adjective and thus "He is known to me" is not a passive but simple active form.
    I think an adjective has neither an active nor a passive form, but I am not a teacher.

  9. newbie10's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Bengali; Bangla
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Feb 2010
    • Posts: 41
    #10

    Re: In which cases "to" is used before agent instead of "by" in Passive Voice

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Wai View Post
    I think an adjective has neither an active nor a passive form, but I am not a teacher.
    Well.. I would love more discussion on this point..Involvement of more members would certainly help us to come to a conclusion, since we are NOT teachers but of course can share our ideas to form a universally accepted explanation..

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. [Grammar] Passive structures using "By" with an agent
    By shani16 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 23-Dec-2014, 09:51
  2. Replies: 3
    Last Post: 09-Oct-2013, 13:51
  3. Replies: 3
    Last Post: 15-Sep-2012, 14:55
  4. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 13-Aug-2011, 14:50
  5. "Believe" / the perfect tense / passive voice
    By Nannou in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 20-Jun-2011, 23:37

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •