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Humanities Libertexts

7.3: Verb Tenses: Passive Voice

  • Page ID
    5825
  • SIMPLE TENSES

    SIMPLE PRESENT

    $$\text{General facts or habitual repetitive actions} = \text{am, is, are} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{1}\):

    • Lunch is served at noon.
    • The locks are checked every night.

    SIMPLE PAST

    $$\text{Completed past actions} = \text{was, were} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{2}\):

    She was rewarded for her information.

    SIMPLE FUTURE

    $$\text{Future promises, predictions, or actions} = \text{will be} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{3}\):

    will be there on Saturday.

    SIMPLE PROGRESSIVE

    PRESENT PROGRESSIVE

    $$\text{Future actions (paired with go, leave, move, etc.) or actions that are currently in progress} = \text{am, is, are} + \text{being} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{4}\):

    • The votes are being counted by impartial volunteers.
    • Joe is being crowned king of the dance.

    PAST PROGRESSIVE

    $$\text{Actions that were in progress at a specific time past} = \text{was, were} + \text{being} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{5}\):

    They thought they were being careful.

    PERFECT TENSES

    PRESENT PERFECT

    $$\text{Actions that happened at an unspecified time in the past or that begin in the past but are still currently occurring} = \text{has, have} + \text{been} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{6}\):

    • The boat has been delayed because of the hurricane in the Atlantic.
    • Tests have been proctored by teachers for many years.

    PAST PERFECT

    $$\text{Actions that began or occurred before something else in the past} = \text{had} + \text{been} + \text{past participle}$$

    Example \(\PageIndex{7}\):

    She had been searching for clues for hours before bedtime.

    Note

    Future progressive, future perfect, & perfect progressive are not used in passive voice.

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