What is Voice – Active Voice & Passive Voice ? Why is voice needed?

While communicating we use words in a sentence according to the importance ascribed to them. Or in other words  are placed in a sentence according to their importance in communication.

Usually a sentence has a subject, a verb and an object in it. A word is used as subject or object in a sentence according to the importance it carries with it.

Take the following examples to make it clear.

 1. I wrote a letter to him.

2. I wrote him a letter.

3. A letter was written to him by me.

In these sentences the three key words I, letter and him are placed at different places in the sentences  according to the importance of these words in communication. As such the two forms of voice i.e. Active and Passive voice are used accordingly  while communicating. More important words are used as Subject and those of secondary place are used as an object in a sentence. For this necessary changes are made in the sentence.



The  process of making a change from active to passive form of a sentence is called ‘change of the voice’.



Practice Exercise ONE

Change the voice

1. Boys were flying kites in the sky.

2. We shall wait for you until you return.

3. Farmers are harvesting crops these days.

4. He brought his luggage by train.

5. Masons were building a huge building.

6. One should pay one’s all the dues in time.

7. The students had not learnt their lesson today.

8. They will  see the principal tomorrow.

9. Parents look after  children.

10. You should not have insulted him by abusing.



Practice Exercise TWO


1. Who paid the bill of the dinner party yesterday ?

2. Why did you not greet the chief guest by garlanding?

3. Do you know the gentleman wearing a turban?

4. Why are the children laughing at the stranger?

5. How did you solve such a difficult sum?

6, Whom do you want to see?

7. What does this box contain?

8. When will your mother cook food?

9. Have you not taken your food by now ?

10. Did she not take care of her parents?



Practice Exercise THREE


1. One should prefer health to wealth.

2. The teacher awarded him a prize.

3. My new car was stolen yesterday.

4. Should we not help his brother at the time of need?

5. True friends are always remembered in adversity.

6. The hunter aimed at the flying bird.

7. His friends should not desert him.

8. The police found an abandoned child near the temple.

9. All paid glowing tributes to the departed leader.

10. The minister paid a hurried visit to our village.


Practice Exercise FOUR

(Please note that all the sentences written above do not need the words ‘by……(subject)’ after change of their voice. These can be written without subject after change.)

1. People use milk for making curd and butter.

2. All the people know him as a fool.

3. People say that he endeavoured his best.

4. Someone has spread this  rumour.

5. People always admire the brave persons.

6. They say that there had been an explosion in the town hall.

7. They served tea and snacks to all the visiting guests.

8. One should not take one’s decisions in haste.

9. These days people prefer wealth to health.

10. The guests finished the whole of the food at the party.


Practice Exercise FIVE

1. The farmer had ploughed  the field.

2. Let us start our journey to Simla.

3. Last Sunday all of them made a plan to go to Agra.

4. The principal refused him admission.

5. They  will have finished their work by then.

6. Let me solve this sum.

7. You  should not have taken up the matter with him.

8. Who is taking care of the old couple ?

9. Who was  referred to by the speaker in his speech ?

10. The engineer could not locate fault in the computer.

Practice Exercise SIX

1. The guests kept the host waiting for a long time.

2. The lady has not kept her promise.

3. Heavy floods swept away the standing crops.

4. The chairman objected to his proposal.

5. This forest is infested with lions.

6. Providence saved all the passengers sitting in the bus.

7. People will forget the incident after some time.

8. Who teaches you English?

9. Why did the police not follow the thief?

10. God always helps the poor.





1. Kites were being flown  in the sky by boys.
2. You will be  waited for until you return by us.
3. Crops are being harvested these days by farmers.
4. Luggage was brought by train by him.
5. A huge building was being built by masons.
6. All the dues should be paid  in time.
7. Their lessons had not been learnt today by  students. 
8. The principal will   be seen tomorrow by them.
9.Children are looked after by parents. 
10. He should not have been insulted by abusing by you.


1. By whom was the bill of the dinner party paid yesterday?

2. Why was  the chief guest not greeted by garlanding by you?

3. Is the gentleman wearing a turban known to you ?

4. Why is the stranger being laughed at by the children?

5. How was such a difficult sum solved by you ?

6, Who is wanted to be seen by you?

7. What is contained in this box?

8. When will food be cooked by your mother?

9. Has your food  not been  taken by now by  you ?

10. Were her parents not taken care of by her ?




1. Health should be preferred  to wealth.

2. He was awarded a prize by the teacher,

3. Someone stole my new car  yesterday.

4. Should his brother not be helped  at the time of need by us?

5.One always remembers one’s true friends in adversity.

6. The flying bird was aimed at by the hunter.

7. He should not be deserted by his friends.

8. An abandoned child was found near the temple by the police.

9. The departed leader was paid glowing tributes by all.

10.  A hurried visit was paid to our village by the minister.



1. Milk is used for making curd and butter.

2. He is known as a fool.

3.  It is said that he endeavoured his best.

4. This rumour has been spread.

5.  Brave persons are always admired.

6.  It is said that there had been an explosion in the town hall.

7. Tea and snacks were served to all the visiting guests.

8  Decisions should not be taken in haste.

9. These days wealth is preferred to health.

10. The  whole of the food was finished at the  party.



1. The field had been ploughed by the farmer.

2. It is suggested that we should start our journey to Simla.

3. Last Sunday a plan was made to go to Agra by all of them.

4. He was refused admission by the principal.

5. Their work  will have been finished by then by them.

6. Let this sum be solved by me.

7. The matter should not have been taken up with them by you.

8. By whom is the old couple being taken care of ?

9. Whom did the speaker refer to in his speech ?

10. Fault could not be located in the computer by the engineer.


1.  The host was kept waiting for a long time by the guests.

2. Her promise has not been kept by the lady.

3. The standing crops were swept away by heavy floods.

4. His proposal was objected to by the chairman.

5. This forest infests lions.

6. All the passengers sitting in the bus were saved.

7. The incident will be forgotten after sometime.

8. By whom are you taught English?

9. Why was the thief not followed by the police?

10. The poor is always helped by God




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