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Phrasal and prepositional verbs and phraseological units in passive structures

Study: Special care should be taken with the passive forms of verbs and phraseological units taking prepositional objects: the verb and the preposition following it always stay together while the noun-object (or pronoun) becomes the subject of the passive construction.

Active: Theylaughed at him.

Passive: Hewas laughed at.

Active: Theylooked down upon him.

Passive: Hewas looked down upon.

Active: They did away with the old rules.

Passive: The old rules were done away with.

Note: When phrasal (compound) verbs are followed by a direct object without a preposition remember to keep the two parts of the phrasal verb together in a passive structure.

Active: They knocked down old buildings in the centre of the town.

Passive: Old buildings in the centre of the town were knocked down.


Teaching Models

Ex. 1. Complete the following passive voice sentences with the tenses suggested.

Model: I (punish) for something I didnít do. (Past Indefinite)

I was punished for something I didnít do.

1. The piano (play) far too loudly. (Past Continuous) 2. The matter (discuss) tomorrow. (Future Indefinite) 3. She said that some ink (spill) on the carpet. (Past Perfect) 4. What (do) about this? (Present Perfect) 5. The stolen car (find) in another town. (Past Indefinite) 6. He saw that the table (push) into the corner. (Past Perfect) 7. Your question (answer)? (Present Perfect) 8. The book (finish) next mouth. (Future Indefinite) 9. This picture (admire) always. (Present Perfect) 10. His leg (hurt) in accident. (Past Indefinite) 11. This exercise (do) very carefully. (Present Continuous) 12. The box (not to open) for the last hundred years. (Present Perfect) 13. The Tower of London formally (use) as a prison. (Past Indefinite)


Ex. 2. Paraphrase the following sentences. Give two variants if possible.

Model: They offered me a job at the hospital.

I was offered a job at the hospital.

A job was offered to me.

1. The Queen presented him with a medal. 2. Mr Smith teaches us English at the courses. 3. He told the children fairy-tales. 4. The doctor prescribed me a lot of medicine. 5. They will show us the Crown jewels. 6. Weíll send the invitation to Dick. 7. They left the children only a few sweets. 8. They have given him the chance. 9. My sister advised me to visit this exhibition. 10. The teacher explained the pupils a new grammar rule. 11. They paid me a lot of money to do the job. 12. The people have given the minister a hearty welcome.

Ex. 3. Use a passive infinitive to say what must (can, may, should, has to Ö) be done.

Model: We have to clean the pools every two days.

The pools have to be cleaned every two days.

1. We must write the answers on one side of the paper only. 2. They must (not take away) these books. 3. They can easily mend this door. 4. We have to feed pups four times a day. 5. We may keep an injured seal here for several months. 6. People must keep dogs on lead in the park. 7. You can obtain further information about the post by telephoning 2637645. 8. People should send their complaints to the head office. 9. They had to postpone the meeting because of illness. 10. We can change the speech if you donít like it. 11. I have to return these books to the library. 12. Our neighbour ought to paint the garage.


Ex. 4. Rewrite each sentence with an active verb and mention who causes the action.

Model: The casino has been closed.

The authorities have closed the casino.

1. I was told the news this morning. 2. What question was set? 3. This question hasnít been answered properly. 4. Football is played all over the world. 5. No mistakes have been made. 6. The flat was broken into last week. 7. English is spoken all over the world. 8. The new swimming-pool has been opened. 9. This purse was left in the classroom yesterday. 10. Traffic has been banned from the city centre. 11. A new government has been elected. 12. The match has been postponed.


Ex. 5 Answer the questions, using a passive form of the verbs in brackets, together with a suitable adverbial particle (off, on, in, out, up, down, etc).

Model: What generally happens to houses that are unfit to live in? (pull)

They are generally pulled down.

1. What must be done with a bad tooth? (pull) 2. What has to be done with dirty crockery and cutlery at the end of a meal? (wash) 3. What should happen if mistakes appear in a studentís work? (point) 4. What might happen if you crossed a busy road without looking? (knock) 5. What may happen to a man who has committed his first offence? (let) 6. What often happens if negotiations look like being unsuccessful? (break) 7. What happens to traffic in a traffic jam? (hold)


Ex. 6.Express in the passive the second of the following pairs of sentences.

Model: He seldom keeps a promise. No one can rely on him.

He canít be relied on.

1. The child is very ill. Someone must send for the doctor. 2. This old car is in excellent condition. The owner has looked after it well. 3. The Prime Minister spoke very long. The people listened to him in complete silence. 4. She is going into hospital tomorrow. The doctors and nurses will take good care of her. 5. That little boy is very thin and always dirty. No one brings him up properly. 6. The new servant girl is always breaking things in the kitchen. Someone should speak to her about her carelessness. 7. Shakespeare was born about 400 years ago. People look upon himas the greatest of English poets. 8. The thieves broke into the bank at midnight and stole $20.000. No one called for the police until 8 oíclock the next morning.

Self Check


Ex. 7. Choose the right variant active or passive. Discuss the same situation in your group (team, society).

Cindy and Petra are members of a volleyball team.

Cindy: Why wasnít Clare at the training session?
Petra: Havenít you heard? Sheís been thrown/threw out for stealing.
Cindy: No! Really?
Petra: Yes. She was seen/saw taking money from someoneís bag in the changing room when she saw/was seen Clare with Karenís bag.
Cindy: Oh dear. Thatís terrible.
Petra: Clare said she had been told/had told to fetch the money by Karen but when Karen was asked/has asked about it, she said she didnít know/was known what Clare was talking about.
Cindy: But how stupid of Karen to leave money in the changing room!
Petra: Yes. She was told/told that by the manager too.
Cindy: She wonít do/will be done it again, anyhow.
Petra: No, I guess not. What do you think Clare will do/will be done now?
Cindy: I donít know. This is the second club she has been asked/has asked to leave, isnít it?
Petra: Yes. Itís hard to know what can be done/do for someone like Clare.


Ex. 8. Transform the sentences using the Passive Voice.

1. Glinka composed the opera ďIvan SusaninĒ. 2. A railway line connects the country with the city. 3. Who has written this article? 4. This mine will produce large quantities of coal this year. 5. The manager has just signed the documents. 6. The machine wraps the bread automatically. 7. They didnít damage the machinery. 8. They had sent the newspapers to Scotland by train. 9. We have cancelled the meeting. 10. Will you have cleaned the garage by
5 oíclock tomorrow? 11. The company will export this computer to seventy different countries. 12. The police are questioning Mr and Mrs Davidson.


Date: 2015-12-11; view: 4412

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