Sunday, 3 August 2014



While writing we use different forms of sentences( i.e active and passive forms). Words are placed in the sentence according to their importance to the text. More important is used at place of priority in the sentence. For this necessary change is made in the sentence. 

These two forms of sentences are called Active and Passive forms of sentences and this process of making a change from active to passive form of a sentence is called 'change of the voice'.

In examination there are questions in the form of change of sentences from one form of voice to another i.e. from active to passive form or vice versa  & there are questions to rectify errors due to wrong change of form of sentences.

A sentence generally has in it a  Subject , Verb and object. Some sentences do not have an object but for change of voice an object in a sentence is necessary.

Change of Voice in case of ----- IMPERATIVE SENTENCES

An imperative sentence is changed from active to passive voice according to the message contained in the sentence.  For this purpose words used are as follows :

-- If it contains an order or a command   :   You are ordered to or You are commanded to

-- If it contains a request :         You are requested to

-- If  it contains an advice :    You are advised to

-- If it contains a negative order : You are forbidden to

-- If it contains 'Let us'  : It is suggested that we should or It is                proposed that we should


For Example:

Leave the room at once.
You are ordered to leave the room at once.

Bring a glass of water for me. 
You are ordered to bring a glass of water for me.

Go to market immediately.
You are ordered to go to market immediately.

Please help me.
You are  requested to help me.

Please take pity on him.
You are requested take pity on him.

Please  keep this book on the table.
You are requested to keep this book on the table.

Do not walk barefooted.
You are forbidden to walk barefooted.

Do not stand on ceremony.
You are forbidden to stand on ceremony.

Please do not disturb me.
You are requested not to disturb me.

Please do not eat raw fruit.
You  are requested not to eat raw fruit. 

Always speak the  truth.
You are advised to always speak the truth.

Never tell a lie.
You are advised never to tell a lie.

Always respect your elders.
You are advised to always respect your elders. 


Alternative Method

These sentences are changed from active to passive voice in the following way also. These sentences generally start with first form of verb. The word in first form of verb is changed as : 

 Let  +..........(object) +be + third form of verb.

For example :

Respect your betters.
Let your betters be respected.

Start your work now.
Let your work be started now.

Close the door.
Let the door be closed.

Help the poor. 
Let the poor be helped.

Do not insult the beggar.
Let the beggar not be insulted.

Obey your parents.
Let your parents be obeyed.

Mind your own business.
Let your own business be minded.

Do not take overripe fruit.
Let overripe fruit not be taken.

Let us start our work.
Let our work be started.
It is suggested that we should start our work.                                       

Change of Voice in case of --- INTERROGATIVE SENTENCES

Interrogative sentences starting with words like 'Who' 'Which' or 'Where'   etc.

Who is changed to  ---- by whom   

For example : 



Who helped you?
By whom were you helped?

Who makes a noise ?
By whom is a noise made?

Who is teaching the students?
By whom are the students being taught?

Who will bell the cat ?
By whom will the cat be belled  ?

Who has painted this picture ?
By whom has this picture been painted?

Who deceived her in love?
By whom was she deceived in love?

Who suspects him to be a thief?
By whom is he suspected to be a thief ?

Who lent you this book?
By whom were you  lent  this book ?

Who escorted her to the door?
By whom was she escorted to the door?

Who does not like lovely roses?
By whom are lovely roses not liked ?

Whom did you laugh at ?
Who was laughed at by you?

Who elects the President of India ?
By whom is the President of India elected?

Who elected him captain?
By whom was he elected captain?

Whom will she marry?
Who will be married to her ?

Whom did the team elect captain?
Who was elected captain by the team?

Where did you get this picture?
Where was this picture got by you?

How did you get this book?
How was this book got by you?

Which book did you purchase?
Which book was purchased by you?

Which toy does the child like?
Which toy is liked by the child?

Which team won the match?
By which team was the match won?

Which doctor treated him ?
By which doctor was he treated?

Where did you find this pen?
Where was this pen found by you?

What mistake did he commit?
What mistake was committed by him?


What action did the teacher take against him?

What action was taken against him by the teacher?

What offer did he put forth?

What offer was put forth by him?

What does she teach you ?

What are you taught by her?

What has he done?

What has been done by him?

What do you want ?

What is wanted by you?

When did you paint this picture?

When was this picture painted by you?

How did he treat you?

How were you treated by him?

How did you solve this sum?

How was this sum solved by you?

Why did you abuse her ?

Why was she abused by you?

(NOTE: Please note in case of all the sentences written above the interrogative form of the sentence is NOT to be changed.)


Sometimes there are sentences having two subjects.


In these sentences first object having proximity to verb is brought out and changed. The other object remains as it was and is  placed after verb.

For Example :


She teaches us English.
We are taught English by her.

They elected him captain.
He was elected captain by them.

The doctor gave him medicine.

He was given medicine by the doctor.

Who teaches you English ?

By whom are you taught English?

He told me an interesting story.

I was told an interesting story by him.

She gave him a book.

He was given a book  by her.

But it is not wrong if second object is used as follows because some writers prefer non living object to be used:

A book was given to him by her.
An interesting story was told to me by him.
Medicine was given to him by the doctor.

Sentences For Practice 


Change the voice.

1. Who shouted at the stranger while he was walking in the street ?

    By whom was the stranger shouted at while he was  walking in the street?

2. Why did you make a row with his brother for nothing ?

     Why was a row made with his brother for nothing by you?

3.  Where did you make  fresh purchases of your household items today?

     Where were fresh purchases of your household items made that day by you?

4.  Why did  you not turn down his proposal when he offered it to you?

     Why was his proposal not turned down by you when it was offered to you by him?

5.  How did you overcome  so many hurdles so easily?

     How were so many hurdles overcome so easily by you?

6.  Why does the government not make peace with  protesters?
      Why is peace not made with protesters by the government ?

7.  How will  he manage the affairs of the company alone ?

      How will the affairs of the company be managed by him alone ?

AN EXERCISE FOR PRACTICE : Send/Email/Post your reply.



Change the voice.

1. What are you finding out here in the dark?

2. Who is pursuing the case now? 

3. Why is she not attending to her job properly?

4. What prompted him to take immediate action in the matter?

5. Which painter painted this beautiful painting? 

6. Let us celebrate the occasion together today.

7. Go and supervise the arrangements.

8. When did the servant clean the floor?

9. Why do peasants not grow tea plants in their fields ?

10. Why did she postpone her birthday party?


1. What is being found out here in the dark by you?
2. By whom is the case being pursued now? 
3. Why is her job not being attended to properly by her?
4. By what was he prompted to take immediate action in the matter?
5. By which painter was this beautiful painting painted?
6. It is suggested that we should celebrate the occasion together              today.
7. You are ordered to go and supervise the arrangements.
8. When was the floor cleaned by the servant?
9. Why are tea plants not grown in their  fields by peasants?
10. Why was her birthday party postponed by her?

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