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Active and Passive Voice Rules and Exercises


The verb that expresses the action done by the Subject is said to be in the Active Voice.

The verb that expresses what is done to the Subject is said to be in the Passive Voice.

It is the verb that is expressed in the active or passive Voice.

1. Raja posted the letter.

2. The letter Was posted by Raja.

In the first sentence, the subject of the verb acts, so

the verb is said to him in the Active Voice.

In the second sentence, the subject of the verb is acted

upon, so the verb is said to be in the passive voice,


1. When the subject is unknown or can’t be mentioned easily:

My cow was killed. (Somebody killed my cow. )

The fox is said to be cunning. (People say the fox is cunning.)

2.When more interest is taken in the thing done rather than the doer of it.

Forty shops were gutted in a fire in Karnal.

(Fire gutted forty shops in Karnal .)

The result was announced yesterday. (The Principal announced the result yesterday)


1. When the verb is changed trout the active voice to the passive voice, the object of the verb in the active voice becomes the subject of the verb in the passive voice :

Sheela washes her clothes.

Her clothes are washed by Sheela.

2. Some intransitive verbs become transitive when a preposition is added to them. In that case, they can also he changed into  passive :

They aimed at a tiger.

A tiger Was aimed at by them.

3. If a transitive verb has two objects, either of  them may be made the subject in the Passive

Voice ;

He  gave me a watch

I was given is watch by him


A watch was  given to me by him,


The imperative sentences in the active voice are changed into the  passive voice by making use of the word ‘let’ :

Let +Object + be + Past participle   

Post this letter.

Let this letter be posted.

Please pardon me this time.

You are requested to pardon me this time.

1. Interrogative Imperative sentence is written as

Let + Object + not be  + Past Participle

Don’t open it.

Let it not be opened.

You are warned not to open it.

2. Interrogative sentences in the action are changed thus :

 (a)   Where did you put my things?

Where were my things put by you?

(b)   Who broke my slate?

 By whom Was my Slate broken?

(c)    Have you done your work?

Has the work been done by you?

(d)   Do you know him?

Is he known to you?


In sentences containing an infinitive only, the infinitive is changed to make it passive :

It is time to close the shop.

It is time for the shop to be closed.


Active voice: The Auxiliary + root form of the verb

Passive voice: The Auxiliary + be +Past Participle  

Can you solve this sum? ‘

Can this sum be solved by you?

May God blessed you with a son!

May you be blessed with a son!

They should punish the boys.

The boy should be punished by them.

Remember that pronouns and nouns are changed in voice.

Subject in Active              Object in Passive

I                                          by me

We                                      by us

You                                     by you  

He                                       by him

She                                      by her

It                                          by it

 They                                   by them

Ram                                    by Ram


The verb in the active is changed into passive thus :

(i) In the Present Indefinite Tense is, am, are added to the third form of the verb :

She enjoys good health. (Active)

Good health is enjoyed by her. (Passive)

(ii)In the Past, Indefinite Tense was and was are used with the third form of the verb.

He served his country. (Active)

His country was served by him. (Passive)

(iii)In the Future Indefinite Tense shall/will be is used :

They win never harm us. (Active)

We shall never be harmed by them. (Passive)

(iv)In Present continuous and Past continuous tense ‘being’ is added to is, are, am, was. were and the third form of  the verb :

We are singing songs. (Active)

Songs are being sung by us. (Passive)

The boys were watching the movie  (Active)

The movie was being watched by the boys. (Passive)

The washerman was ironing the coat. (Active)

The coat was being ironed by the washerman. (Passive)

(v) In Present Perfect, Past Perfect and Future Perfect Tenses ‘been’ is added to the Perfect “Tense :

He has sent me a present.                                           (Active)

A present has been sent to me by him.

or                                                                            (Passive)

I have been sent a present to him.                          (Passive)

I will have learnt this poem by now.                        (Active)

This poem will have been learnt by me by now. (Passive)

 Note: There is no passive voice in the Future Continuous and Present, Past and Future Perfect Continuous Tenses.

 VoiceIndefiniteContinuous Perfect Perfect continuous



ActiveI sing a song.I am singing a song.I have sung a song.I have been singing a song.
PassiveA song is sung by me.A song is being sung by me.A song has been sung by me.No Passive



ActiveI sang a song.I was singing a song.I had sung a song.I had been singing a song
PassiveA song was sung by meA song was being sung by me.A song had been sung by me.No Passive




ActiveI shall sing a song.I shall be singing a songI shall have sung a song.I shall have been singing a song.
PassiveA song will be sung by me.No PassiveA song will have been sung by me.No Passive

The following table makes transformation form  Active into Passive more clear :

                                     Take 1/2 cup of water in a pan
      Add 1/2 teaspoon of tea leaves and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar in it
                                                Bring it to a boil.


                              Then, add 12 cup of milk m it and boil.



                                         Pierce the tea and drink it hot.

Now, these instructions of making tea is written in passive Voice and fill in the blanks to make a paragraph.

1/2 cup of water is taken, In a pan. 1/2 teaspoon of tea leaves and sugar are added in it. The water is brought to a boil Then, 1/2 cup milk is added in it and it Is I boiled again The tea is pierced and it is drunk hot.

Class VIII Active and Passive Voice Exercise-1&2