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I-3[1] Grammar Summary Page 1 of 1
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The Passive

The passive is usually used in:

• writing (i.e. newspaper articles, reports).
• formal speaking

We use the passive:

1. when we do not want to identify the person doing the action. For example, we can use it in a newspaper
article where a witness mustn't be identified.

• The crime was witnessed at 8pm.

2. for describing processes like a recipe or a procedure.

• The tires are placed on the car after it is painted.
• The carrots are peeled and put in the soup.

When to use by:

1. We include the `agent' (person f thing responsible for the action) when:

a. it is important to know the agent

• The election was won by Nichael Nilton.

2. We do not include the `agent' (personfthing responsible for the action) when:

a. you don't know the agent

• Ny handbag was stolen last night.

b. the agent is clear to us

• The man was arrested. (By whom? By the police.we understand this.)
c. the agent is not important

• Fifteen beds were donated to the hospital.