passive voice :

passive voice

There are legitimate uses for the passive voice: “this absurd regulationwas of course written by a committee.” But it’s true that you can makeyour prose more lively and readable by using the active voice much moreoften. “The victim was attacked by three men in ski masks” isn’t nearlyas striking as “three men in ski masks attacked the victim.” The passivevoice is often used to avoid taking responsibility for an action: “myterm paper was accidentally deleted” avoids stating the truth: “Iaccidentally deleted my term paper.” Over-use of passive constructionsis irritating, though not necessarily erroneous. But it does lead toreal clumsiness when passive constructions get piled on top of eachother: “no exception in the no-pets rule was sought to be created sothat angora rabbits could be raised in the apartment” can be madeclearer by shifting to the active voice: “the landlord refused to makean exception to the no-pets rule to allow Eliza to raise angora rabbitsin the apartment.”

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  • n  the voice used to indicate that the grammatical subject of the verb is the recipient (not the source) of the action denoted by the verb
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