PASSIVE VOICE:  Chart for Each Verb Tense


We'd like to welcome you to the ESL HELP! Desk, where all activities and exercises are authentic English, from learners of English.

In this lesson we are proud to present to you one of the handiest charts you will ever see.  Our chart will help you with both active voice sentences and passive voice sentences.

If you'd like to begin with Part 1 of our series, please click here: What Is Passive Voice?


Active and Passive Voice Chart for Each Verb Tense

Each verb tense and its corresponding active and passive voice structure

Use the chart below to guide you when constructing passive voice verb forms.

The chart will also help you with the correct sentence structure (syntax).  

Notice that correct subject-verb agreement is essential. 

In cases where the active voice sentence indicates a direct and an indirect object, the passive voice sentence is shown in two different ways, one with the direct object as the new subject, and the other with the indirect object as the new subject.

Active Voice Sentence Passive Voice Sentence
Simple Present Tense
These laws frighten us. We are frightened (by these laws).
The mountains surround our town. Our town is surrounded by mountains.
Simple Past Tense
The judge sent Frank to jail. Frank was sent to jail.
The priest married us in Puerto Rico. We were married in Puerto Rico.
Present Progressive Tense
Sam is fixing the T.V. The TV is being fixed by Sam.
Present Perfect Tense
Nobody has (ever) told me this. I have (never) been told this (by anybody).
This has (never) been told to me (by anybody).
Past Perfect Tense
He had given this to me before you left. I had been given this (by him) before you left.
This had been given to me (by him) before you left.
Infinitive Phrase
I have to do my homework right now. My homework has to be done right now.
I am going to finish this by six o'clock. This is going to be finished by six o'clock.
The judge will put them in prison. They will be put in prison.
I will finish this by six o'clock. This will be finished by six o'clock.
People must respect the law. The law must be respected.
I believe that people should tell the truth. I believe that the truth should be told.
Drugs would affect his life. His life would be affected by drugs.


Quick Summary

Passive Voice Verb Form Chart

Here is a quick summary of the correct form of the verb when forming passive voice:

verb tense "be" verb past participle of the main verb
simple present am/is/are The past participle is then added.
simple past was/were The past participle is then added.
present progressive is/am/are being The past participle is then added.
past progressive was/were being The past participle is then added.
present perfect have/has been The past participle is then added.
past perfect had been The past participle is then added.
modals modal + be
(e.g. will be, must be, etc.)
The past participle is then added.

Next.... The Past Participle and Passive Voice


   In our next lesson we discuss the Past Participle and
its application in passive voice sentences


So from the ESL Help Desk, thanks for dropping by for this lesson and remember to email us your questions about English grammar by way of our blog

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