What is Voice – Active Voice & Passive Voice ? Why is voice needed?
While communicating we use words in a sentence according to the importance ascribed to them. Or in other words are placed in a sentence according to their importance in communication.
Usually a sentence has a subject, a verb and an object in it. A word is used as subject or object in a sentence according to the importance it carries with it.
Take the following examples to make it clear.
1. I wrote a letter to him.
2. I wrote him a letter.
3. A letter was written to him by me.
In these sentences the three key words I, letter and him are placed at different places in the sentences according to the importance of these words in communication. As such the two forms of voice i.e. Active and Passive voice are used accordingly while communicating. More important words are used as Subject and those of secondary place are used as an object in a sentence. For this necessary changes are made in the sentence.
The process of making a change from active to passive form of a sentence is called ‘change of the voice’.
Interrogative sentences starting with words like ‘Who’, ‘Whom’, ‘Which’ , ‘Why’ ,’What’ ,’Whose’ , ‘How’ ,’Whom or ‘Where’ etc.
First of all it is necessary to know about the words ‘who’ and ”whom’.
Difference between ‘Who’ and ‘Whom’ while making their use in a sentence :
Subject Possessive Pronoun Object
I My Me
We our Us
You Your You
He His Him
She Her Her
They Their Them
Similarly in case who and whom
Who Whose Whom
So when we use a word in Subject place it is ‘who’ and using in place of object it is ‘whom’.
Following example makes it clear.
Active voice He greeted her. He = subject greeted = verb her = object
In passive object moves to the beginning of the sentence and subject to the end of the sentence.
In Passive voice Her will change to She and will be shifted to the beginning of the sentence. Greeted will change to was greeted. He will change to him and will be placed at the end of the sentence.
She was greeted by him.
Now try this sentence. Who greeted her?
To understand this sentence substitute the word ‘who’ with an assertive subject like He. He will change to ‘by him’. Similarly in this sentence ‘who’ will change to ‘by whom’ as who is in subject place and whom is in object place. Because it is an interrogative sentence the words ‘By whom’ will remain placed in the beginning of the sentence.
By whom was she greeted ?
In examination this will help in questions relating to corrections, clause substitution and fill in the blanks etc.
Fill in the blank with a word out of given options :
1………………(who/whom) do you think will be elected captain?
2………………(who/whom) will the team elect captain?
To understand these sentences, think reply of these interrogative sentences in assertive form.i.e.
- I think……………..(he/him)will be elected captain.
- The team will elect……………(he/him) captain.
In the first sentence it is quite clear that subject form is required and out of the two options ‘he’ is the subject form. Out of who and whom ‘who’ is the word in subject place. So in interrogative sentence’who’ will be used.
- Who do you think will be elected captain. or in other way …………..( you think) will be elected captain? Find out whether in this sentence a subject or an object is required. It is clearly evident that a subject is required and it is ‘who’.
Similarly in the second sentence it is evident that a word at object place is required. Out of he and him ‘him’ and out of who and whom ‘whom’ are the words at object place.
2. Whom will the team elect captain? The team will elect him captain.
So the correct word is ‘Whom’.
ACTIVE AND PASSIVE VOICE
While changing a sentence into passive voice Who is changed to —- by whom
For example :
By whom was she deceived in love?
By whom is he suspected to be a thief ?
By whom were you lent this book ?
By whom was she escorted to the door?
By whom are lovely roses not liked ?
Who was laughed at by you?
By whom is the President of India elected?
By whom was he elected captain?
Who was elected captain by the team?
Which book was purchased by you?
Which toy is liked by the child?
By which team was the match won?
By which doctor was he treated?
Where was this pen found by you?
What mistake was committed by him?
What action was taken against him by the teacher?
What offer was put forth by him?
What are you taught by her?
What has been done by him?
What is wanted by you?
What does this box contain?
What is contained in this box?
When was this picture painted by you?
How were you treated by him?
How was this sum solved by you?
Why did you abuse her ?
Why was she abused by you?
Sentences for practice
Fill in the blanks in the following sentences with a word out of ……who, whom, which and what.
- ……………, do you consider, is right ?
- …………….. am I speaking to, please ?
- ………………do you want to see ?
- ………………. were you talking with ?
- ……………..of you has broken the chair?
- ……………..did you see in the garden ?
- ……………prompted you to say these words?
- The lady……….teaches me English lives here.
- Those ……..work hard are sure to succeed.
- ……………wants to see me?
- It was he………..rescued the drowning child.
- I ………am your friend will always help you.
- He………..I respect so much is my mentor.
- Those ……..join our group need not to be afraid of anyone.
- She is the person………….is to blame.
Change the voice
- How many countries have you visited so far?
- Who invented the telescope?
- Why is he having a keen interest in her affairs?
- When will the farmers harvest their crops?
- Where did you find your lost books.
- What surprises me is her strange behaviour ?
- Whom do you like the most?
- Who will take care of their old parents?
- Who is cooking food in the kitchen?
- How does the mother look after her children?
- Where did the child hide his toys?
- When will you host a party for us ?
- Who knocked at the door?
- Why is the peon not ringing the bell?
- How many employees did you hire for this job?
- When will she finish her work?
Why was a row made with his brother for nothing by you?
How were so many hurdles overcome so easily by you?
By whom was the stranger shouted at while he was walking in the street?