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When a past participle is used as part of a passive verb or as an adjective? Options
A cooperator
Posted: Monday, December 04, 2017 3:34:09 PM

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Hi everyone!
I was told that there is no difference in the meaning of the "to be" verb + the P.P of a transitive verb acting as an adjective" and the active form of the same P.P used as an adjective. For instance, (I wrote active forms under each one.).
1- I am/was frightened.
Something/Someone frightens/frightened me.

2- The dog is/was frightened.
Something/Someone frightens/frightened the dog.

3- It is/was made in France.
Someone makes/made it in France.

4- These are made in France.
Someone makes/made these in France.

5-The door is/was opened.
Someone opens/opened the door.

6- We are/were opened.
Someone opens/opened us.

7- We are/were closed.
Someone closes/closed us.



If yes, could you tell me why and tell me if this can be applied for any verbs.
If not, could you tell me why?



Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
thar
Posted: Tuesday, December 05, 2017 4:23:57 AM

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Is there really any difference?
If something frightened the dog, then the dog was frightened.
Normally the result is the same.

If you use the passive to state the agent, that is clearly a verb.

The dog was frightened by the storm.



The adjective and participle for 'open' are different.

The adjective is 'open'.
The door was open - its state.
The door was opened - what someone did to it.

For 'closed' the adjective and participle are rge same, so the meaning depends on context and extra information.

The door was closed - its state.
The door was closed by the last person to leave - what somebody did to it - an action.
The door was closed silently - how it was done - an action.

But in static verbs the state and action are the same - there is a reason the adjective and past participle are the same - they express the same meaning.
Audiendus
Posted: Tuesday, December 05, 2017 8:45:08 AM
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thar wrote:
For 'closed' the adjective and participle are the same, so the meaning depends on context and extra information.

The door was closed - its state.
The door was closed by the last person to leave - what somebody did to it - an action.
The door was closed silently - how it was done - an action.

This also applies to 'frightened':

The dog was frightened - its state.
The dog was frightened by the gunshot - what the gunshot did to it - an action.
The dog is frightened [state] because the noise frightened it [action].
The dog was frightened [state] because the noise had frightened it [action].

Other examples:

My shoes are covered with mud (their present state).
Something covered my shoes with mud (a past action, the cause of their present state).

This box is varnished (its present state).
Someone varnished this box (a past action, the cause of its present state).

The machine was broken (its past state).
Something/someone had broken the machine (an earlier action, the cause of that past state).
A cooperator
Posted: Tuesday, December 05, 2017 7:32:10 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
thar wrote:
For 'closed' the adjective and participle are the same, so the meaning depends on context and extra information.

The door was closed - its state.
The door was closed by the last person to leave - what somebody did to it - an action.
The door was closed silently - how it was done - an action.

This also applies to 'frightened':

The dog was frightened - its state.
The dog was frightened by the gunshot - what the gunshot did to it - an action.
The dog is frightened [state] because the noise frightened it [action].
The dog was frightened [state] because the noise had frightened it [action].


thar wrote:
Is there really any difference?
If something frightened the dog, then the dog was frightened.
Normally the result is the same.

If you use the passive to state the agent, that is clearly a verb.

The dog was frightened by the storm.


Thanks a lot both, Thar, and Audiendus
But, you decided that it is "state/describing the subject" just because the agent isn't mentioned in the passive, and if it is mentioned to the agent of passive form, then it is clearly an action. But, I would be saying we don't need to mention to the agent of a passive form.


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
Audiendus
Posted: Tuesday, December 05, 2017 9:27:51 PM
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A cooperator wrote:
But, you decided that it is "state/describing the subject" just because the agent isn't mentioned in the passive

No, that is not the reason it is a state. To determine whether it is a state or an action, if the agent is not mentioned, you need to consider its meaning.

As soon as everyone had left the room, the door was closed. [This is clearly an action - the door was closed (got closed) at that moment.]
When I arrived, I found that the door was closed. [This is clearly a state - the door was already closed.]
A cooperator
Posted: Thursday, December 07, 2017 9:40:29 AM

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Audiendus wrote:
As soon as everyone had left the room, the door was closed. [This is clearly an action - the door was closed (got closed) at that moment.]
When I arrived, I found that the door was closed. [This is clearly a state - the door was already closed.]

Thanks a lot, Audiendus,
Your explanation has been quite excellent, but I have these points:
1- in your last sentence where past participle is a state, you don't think that something/someone definitely closed the door. So, I still confused why you said it it a state. A state/describing a subject which cannot be done by something or someone. So, I think it will still an action. "You found the door was closed [by someone/something] when you arrived.

2- if the agent is mentioned, then I must determine that it is an action?

3- if yes, then if the meaning is considered as a state as in your last sentence, and another writer only introduced the agent in your sentence, then that would change anything?
"When I arrived, I found that the door was closed by something/someone."

4- to be honest with you, whenever coming across any pattern of "to be" OR "being" + "past participle", I directly consider adding the "Someone/something" as the agent if not mentioned since I don't expect that the person/something that an action is done to will do the action. Thus, I always add the substituted agent "something/someone".

5- Here in the sentence below, I was told it is wrong to be an active form, but it must have an active form if it is OK in the passive form.

It does not feel natural to use the active infinitive with an agent - the participle is more normal.
"I hate someone to make a fool of me" just sounds completely wrong.
"I hate to be made a fool of" sounds perfectly natural.


6- Here I am sorry to say I still confused whether the past participle is a state or action(part of a passive verb).-- if past participle is followed by one of the prepositions, "by", "through", I can directly determine it is an action/part of a passive verb, since an agent is usullay introduced by "by". However, if followed by other prepositions, then I can determine it is a state/an adjective.
The cleaning is to be finished by Monday.
He wasn't anywhere to be seen.
Your are to be congratulated.
This behaviour is to be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done.
I was shocked to see how I'll he was.
He was badly shocked by his fall.
We're shocked at/by the prices in London.

BTW, Michael Swan dose describe when a past participle is used as part of a passive verb or as an adjective. Thus, do you think this means when it is used as an action or a state?


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
Audiendus
Posted: Thursday, December 07, 2017 10:11:25 PM
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A cooperator wrote:
1- in your last sentence where past participle is a state, you don't think that something/someone definitely closed the door. So, I still confused why you said it it a state. A state/describing a subject which cannot be done by something or someone. So, I think it will still an action. "You found the door was closed [by someone/something] when you arrived.

Yes, an action occurred in the past, but we are not concerned with that. We are not talking about the action itself; we are talking about the state resulting from the action. It is obvious that someone or something closed the door (e.g. a person, an automatic mechanism, or a gust of wind), but that is not important. All that matters in this case is that the door was in a closed state.

A co-operator wrote:
2- if the agent is mentioned, then I must determine that it is an action?

We can sometimes use "by..." with a state, but I don't think I would then call the noun after "by" an agent. I think of it more as a 'circumstance' than an 'agent', because we are not talking about an action. Compare the following:

The sun is obscured by clouds. [= the sun is in an obscured state because of clouds.] Here we are thinking of the clouds not as an agent actively 'doing' something, but as a circumstance - something that just 'happens to be there'.
The sun is being obscured by clouds. This is a passive construction; it refers to an action, i.e. something that is being actively done to the sun. Here we are thinking of the clouds as an agent.

A cooperator wrote:
3- if yes, then if the meaning is considered as a state as in your last sentence, and another writer only introduced the agent in your sentence, then that would change anything?
"When I arrived, I found that the door was closed by something/someone."

If we wish to stress the action rather than the state, we need to avoid ambiguity. Did something/someone close the door when I arrived, or before I arrived? If it/they closed it before I arrived, we need to make this clear by using the appropriate tense, i.e. the past perfect:

"When I arrived, I found that the door had been closed (by something/someone)."

A cooperator wrote:
4- to be honest with you, whenever coming across any pattern of "to be" OR "being" + "past participle", I directly consider adding the "Someone/something" as the agent if not mentioned since I don't expect that the person/something that an action is done to will do the action. Thus, I always add the substituted agent "something/someone".

I think this is the reason for your confusion! See my comments in response to (1) above.

A cooperator wrote:
5- Here in the sentence below, I was told it is wrong to be an active form, but it must have an active form if it is OK in the passive form.

It does not feel natural to use the active infinitive with an agent - the participle is more normal.
"I hate someone to make a fool of me" just sounds completely wrong.
"I hate to be made a fool of" sounds perfectly natural.

"I hate someone to make a fool of me", is not grammatically wrong, but it sounds very awkward because we wish to stress the action (being made a fool of) rather than a person ("someone").

A cooperator wrote:
6- Here I am sorry to say I still confused whether the past participle is a state or action(part of a passive verb).-- if past participle is followed by one of the prepositions, "by", "through", I can directly determine it is an action/part of a passive verb, since an agent is usullay introduced by "by". However, if followed by other prepositions, then I can determine it is a state/an adjective.
The cleaning is to be finished by Monday. "By" means "no later than" here; it does not refer to an agent.
He wasn't anywhere to be seen.
Your are to be congratulated.
This behaviour is to be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done. These four sentences are irrelevant to this thread; they do not refer to a past participle followed by a preposition.
I was shocked to see how I'll ill he was.
He was badly shocked by his fall. If it means that he suddenly felt shock when he fell, it is an action; if it means that he continued to feel shock for some time afterwards, it is a state. It could be either.
We're shocked at/by the prices in London. This is clearly a state (whether you use "at" or "by"). You have already heard about the prices, and you remain shocked by them.

If "by" is used, it could refer either to an action (passive) or a state (adjective). If a different preposition is used (e.g. "with" or "through"), it refers to a state (e.g. "the gate was already covered with leaves"; "he is frozen with fear"), unless an agent is mentioned (e.g. "the gate was covered with leaves by the gardener") or implied (e.g. "every year the gate is [= gets] covered with leaves [by someone]").

A cooperator wrote:
BTW, Michael Swan dose describe when a past participle is used as part of a passive verb or as an adjective. Thus, do you think this means when it is used as an action or a state?

Yes.

One final comment: You cannot always determine whether a past participle refers to an action or a state merely by analysing the words in the sentence. There is no set of 'rules' that covers every possible case. You need to work out the meaning from the context.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Friday, December 08, 2017 12:15:05 AM

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Quote:
1- in your last sentence where past participle is a state, you don't think that something/someone definitely closed the door. So, I still confused why you said it it a state. A state/describing a subject which cannot be done by something or someone. So, I think it will still an action. "You found the door was closed [by someone/something] when you arrived.

I didn't go through all of these questions and arguments, but something about this first one made me think.

If we are looking at "the door was closed" as a past state, it would be in the past tense:

"I found the door was closed when I arrived." "closed" was the state of the door. It is an adjective.

If you want to look at it as an action occurring at the time, it would be in the progressive:

"I found the door was being closed when I arrived."
- someone or something was closing the door at that time.

If you want to look at an earlier action you would use the pluperfect (past perfect):

"I found that the door had been closed when I arrived." - someone or something closed the door at some time before I arrived.

***********
It is impossible to look at one word in a sentence or paragraph and say "that is an adjective/or verb/ or gerund.
The word takes on its meaning as part of the whole text. Usually, one can tell by looking at what the sentence means - but sometimes one needs to see the whole paragraph.

For example, "He was badly shocked by his fall" - though it often would make absolutely no difference whether one considered it a verb or an adjective, the context may make one or the other more likely.


He was walking along, through the thickening snow. Suddenly his dog leaped ahead, pulling him off balance, and he went head-first into the snow-drift on his right.
He was badly shocked by his fall.

In this one, the context is the moment of his fall - it is all about what was happening at that time - so 'being shocked' sounds like a verb - the fall shocked him when he hit the snow.

How the word is used is not defined by the form of the sentence, but by what the speaker/writer wants to communicate.

In some circumstances, one could write a story in which "He was badly shocked by his fall" - used just once - describes BOTH the action AND his later state.



Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
palapaguy
Posted: Friday, December 08, 2017 12:32:40 AM

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Cooperator:

Focus on what Audiendus said:

"Yes, an action occurred in the past, but we are not concerned with that. We are not talking about the action itself; we are talking about the state resulting from the action. It is obvious that someone or something closed the door (e.g. a person, an automatic mechanism, or a gust of wind), but that is not important. All that matters in this case is that the door was in a closed state."

The word "closed" can have two uses. Either verb, or adjective. THINK and decide which one applies in each case.
thar
Posted: Friday, December 08, 2017 1:10:08 AM

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I think one way to look at this is to say, "What other word would fit here?"

Sometimes concentrating on the word itself just gets you confused.

But it becomes clearer if you look at other words.


Eg
I walk into a building. I look around me, at the state of the building. What do I see?
The door is painted black. The floor is dirty. The room is cold and damp. The walls are covered in old posters. The doors are unlocked. The windows are open. The furniture is broken. The posters on the wall are faded and ripped. .

These are all adjectives describing the state of the objects. You are not describing any action, just the current state, even if that is the result of past actions. You don't know when it happened and that is not what you re describing.

I walk into a nice new office building. Suddenly something happens. The accountants have been out celebrating and have got drunk. What happens?
A fight breaks out. A chair is thrown. The window is broken, A drink is spilled and the floor is covered in beer. Someone is punched and their shirt is ripped. The walls are painted with grafitti The police are called. Some people are arrested. The door is closed and locked and everyone is sent home.

These are all events that happen to something or someone. They are passive verbs.
They could be active verb, with an agent:
Someone breaks the window. Someone paints graffiti. But here they are passive verbs using the past participle.


The words can be exactly the same. What they express, and therefore how you label them grammatically, depends entirely on the context.
Am I describing a state or an action?

If I put another word in, instead, would it be clearly an adjective, or the past participle of a verb?

Adjective:
The door was closed. The door was red. The door was made of wood.
Verb:
The door was closed. The door was opened. Someone closed the door. Someone opened the door.


Audiendus
Posted: Friday, December 08, 2017 9:05:17 AM
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Note also that "closed" can be used either as a verb or as an adjective, but "opened" is normally used only as a verb. The opposite of the verb "closed" is "opened", but the opposite of the adjective "closed" is "open".

The next thing that happened was that the door was closed. [verb]
The next thing that happened was that the door was opened. [verb]

The door was already closed. [adjective]
The door was already open. [adjective]

There is no 'logical' reason for this difference. It is just one of the inconsistencies of English usage.
A cooperator
Posted: Friday, December 08, 2017 7:59:55 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
Quote:

A cooperator wrote:
Quote:
5- Here in the sentence below, I was told it is wrong to be an active form, but it must have an active form if it is OK in the passive form.

It does not feel natural to use the active infinitive with an agent - the participle is more normal.
"I hate someone to make a fool of me" just sounds completely wrong.
"I hate to be made a fool of" sounds perfectly natural.

"I hate someone to make a fool of me", is not grammatically wrong, but it sounds very awkward because we wish to stress the action (being made a fool of) rather than a person ("someone").


Thank you all of you very much indeed,
But, I mean as long as the sentence in passive form 'I hate to be made a fool of' is fine. Then, definitely, this sentence has the following active form 'I hate someone to make a fool of me.'. Which means it doesn't matter if we say 'I hate to be made a fool of by someone.' or 'I hate to be made a fool of.'. In either case, it refers to an action.


Audiendus wrote:
Quote:

He wasn't anywhere to be seen.
Your are to be congratulated.
This behaviour is to be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done.[/s] These four sentences are irrelevant to this thread; they do not refer to a past participle followed by a preposition.


But, a past participle is used, so is it used as part of a passive verb or as an adjective in those sentences?


Audiendus wrote:
Quote:
If "by" is used, it could refer either to an action (passive) or a state (adjective). If a different preposition is used (e.g. "with" or "through"), it refers to a state (e.g. "the gate was already covered with leaves"; "he is frozen with fear"), unless an agent is mentioned (e.g. "the gate was covered with leaves by the gardener") or implied (e.g. "every year the gate is [= gets] covered with leaves [by someone]").


Do you think this is strictly rule?
1- But, if no preposition is used after past participle, how to if it refers to a state or an action 'I was shocked to see how ill he was."
2- If I were you, I was expecting that 'leaves', and 'fear' would have been the agent.
"The gate was already covered with leaves." => "Leaves already covered gate.". If you might be saying to me that 'leaves' is an inanimate subject which cannot do anything, and this "Leaves already covered gate." would be incorrect, I would be saying why this sentence 'I have been faced with an issue => 'An issue has faced me.'' would be correct where the subject is also an inanimate.
"He is frozen with fear." => "Fear freezes him."

Audiendus wrote:
Quote:
One final comment: You cannot always determine whether a past participle refers to an action or a state merely by analysing the words in the sentence. There is no set of 'rules' that covers every possible case. You need to work out the meaning from the context.


Here is my frustration. Do you think that knowing whether a past participle refers to an action( part of a passive verb) or a state/an adjective will add anything benefit for me in learning English?




Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
Audiendus
Posted: Friday, December 08, 2017 9:40:47 PM
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A cooperator,

Some of your specific questions are difficult to answer. In some cases there is a clear distinction between an action and a state, but in other cases they are hard to distinguish. For example, I think of "The gate was (already) covered with leaves" (or "covered in leaves") as a state; but if you change this to "Leaves (already) covered the gate", does it become an action? Are the motionless leaves actually doing something? Or are we now talking about the state of the leaves (despite the fact that the verb is in an 'active' form)? You could regard it as either a state or an action; it is impossible to give a definite answer.

A co-operator wrote:
He wasn't anywhere to be seen.
You are to be congratulated.
This behaviour is to be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done.

The bold phrases as a whole are adjectival, but the past participles themselves are part of passive verbs. For example, "to be congratulated" is an adjectival phrase describing "you", but "congratulated" refers to the action of congratulating you.


Regarding you final question: If you look at the whole context within which a past participle is used, it is usually easy to work out the meaning; there is rarely any ambiguity. You do not need to consider whether to call it part of a passive verb or an adjective; to do so in every case would take a lot of time (sometimes with no clear-cut solution), and have no practical benefit. (It took me three hours to reply to your previous post in this thread!) As long as you understand the meaning and context of each sentence, detailed grammatical analysis is unnecessary.
A cooperator
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 9:32:21 AM

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Audiendus wrote:
A cooperator,

Some of your specific questions are difficult to answer. In some cases there is a clear distinction between an action and a state, but in other cases they are hard to distinguish. For example, I think of "The gate was (already) covered with leaves" (or "covered in leaves") as a state; but if you change this to "Leaves (already) covered the gate", does it become an action? Are the motionless leaves actually doing something? Or are we now talking about the state of the leaves (despite the fact that the verb is in an 'active' form)? You could regard it as either a state or an action; it is impossible to give a definite answer.


Thanks a lot, Audiendus,

Yes, "motionless leave" can do something if we consider it as "an issue", in "an issue has faced me."
Thus,
The gate was already covered with leaves." => "Leaves already covered gate."

I have been faced with an issue => "An issue has faced me."

He is frozen with fear. => "Fear freezes him."

As a result, I would be still confused about whether P.P is used as part of a passive verb or an adjective.

Thus, do you think I shouldn't rely on this rule "If "by" is used, it could refer either to an action (passive) or a state (adjective). If a different preposition is used (e.g. "with" or "through"), it refers to a state (e.g. "the gate was already covered with leaves"; "he is frozen with fear"), unless an agent is mentioned."?


Finally: you didn't comment on this below.
But, I mean as long as the sentence in passive form 'I hate to be made a fool of' is fine. Then, definitely, this sentence has the following active form 'I hate someone to make a fool of me.'. Which means it doesn't matter if we say 'I hate to be made a fool of by someone.' or 'I hate to be made a fool of.'. I.e if we mentioned to the agent or not,it will still refer to an action.

Hence, why was I told

It does not feel natural to use the active infinitive with an agent - the participle is more normal.
"I hate someone to make a fool of me" just sounds completely wrong.
"I hate to be made a fool of" sounds perfectly natural.


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 9:53:22 AM

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Audiendus wrote:


He wasn't anywhere to be seen.
You are to be congratulated.
This behaviour is to be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done.

The bold phrases as a whole are adjectival, but the past participles themselves are part of passive verbs. For example, "to be congratulated" is an adjectival phrase describing "you", but "congratulated" refers to the action of congratulating you[/quote]

But, if the psst participles themselves are part of passive verbs, then what are their active forms?
I only tried, but they look so clumsy.
"He wasn't anywhere to someone see him."
"You are someone to congratulate you."
"This behaviour is something to encourage it."
"There is no thing to someone do it."


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 9:53:25 AM

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Audiendus wrote:


He wasn't anywhere to be seen.
You are to be congratulated.
This behaviour is to be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done.

The bold phrases as a whole are adjectival, but the past participles themselves are part of passive verbs. For example, "to be congratulated" is an adjectival phrase describing "you", but "congratulated" refers to the action of congratulating you


But, if the psst participles themselves are part of passive verbs, then what are their active forms?
I only tried, but they look so clumsy.
"He wasn't anywhere to someone see him."
"You are someone to congratulate you."
"This behaviour is something to encourage it."
"There is no thing to someone do it."


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
Audiendus
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 8:33:53 PM
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A cooperator wrote:
Yes, "motionless leave" can do something if we consider it as "an issue", in "an issue has faced me."
Thus,
The gate was already covered with leaves." => "Leaves already covered gate."

I have been faced with an issue => "An issue has faced me."

He is frozen with fear. => "Fear freezes him."

If you wish to regard all these as actions, you are free to do so. Others may disagree. As I said, there is no definite answer.

A cooperator wrote:
As a result, I would be still confused about whether P.P is used as part of a passive verb or an adjective.

Thus, do you think I shouldn't rely on this rule "If "by" is used, it could refer either to an action (passive) or a state (adjective). If a different preposition is used (e.g. "with" or "through"), it refers to a state (e.g. "the gate was already covered with leaves"; "he is frozen with fear"), unless an agent is mentioned."?

That rule works for me (because some cases which you regard as actions, I regard as states). But if you find it unhelpful, please ignore it.

A cooperator wrote:
Finally: you didn't comment on this below.
But, I mean as long as the sentence in passive form 'I hate to be made a fool of' is fine. Then, definitely, this sentence has the following active form 'I hate someone to make a fool of me.'. Which means it doesn't matter if we say 'I hate to be made a fool of by someone.' or 'I hate to be made a fool of.'. I.e if we mentioned to the agent or not,it will still refer to an action.

Hence, why was I told

It does not feel natural to use the active infinitive with an agent - the participle is more normal.
"I hate someone to make a fool of me" just sounds completely wrong.
"I hate to be made a fool of" sounds perfectly natural.

This is not a question of grammar. It is a question of style - what native speakers actually say. There is no 'rule' for it.
Audiendus
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 8:48:07 PM
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A cooperator wrote:
"He wasn't anywhere to someone see him."
"You are someone to congratulate you."
"This behaviour is something to encourage it."
"There is no thing to someone do it."

No, none of these make sense.

Before I reply further, let me ask you: Do you understand what the original four sentences (mentioned in the earlier post) actually mean? If anyone said them to you, would you understand what they were saying?
A cooperator
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 10:26:54 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
A cooperator wrote:
"He wasn't anywhere to someone see him."
"You are someone to congratulate you."
"This behaviour is something to encourage it."
"There is no thing to someone do it."

No, none of these make sense.

Before I reply further, let me ask you: Do you understand what the original four sentences (mentioned in the earlier post) actually mean? If anyone said them to you, would you understand what they were saying?


Thanks a lot,
Although I brought those from Michael Swan book, but he didn't mention when they should be used and what they can convey.
All what I understand is that "to be seen/ found/ congratulated/ etc.
We also use passive infinitives to express value judgements with verbs like congratulate, encourage, avoid.

He wasn't anywhere to be seen.=> He was hidden.
You are to be congratulated.=> You deserve congratulation.
This behaviour is to be encouraged. =>This behaviour is good and should be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done. - We'll have to buy a new car. (=> There is no way of putting it right.)


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 10:34:30 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
A cooperator wrote:
Yes, "motionless leave" can do something if we consider it as "an issue", in "an issue has faced me."
Thus,
The gate was already covered with leaves." => "Leaves already covered gate."

I have been faced with an issue => "An issue has faced me."

He is frozen with fear. => "Fear freezes him."

If you wish to regard all these as actions, you are free to do so. Others may disagree. As I said, there is no definite answer.

A cooperator wrote:
As a result, I would be still confused about whether P.P is used as part of a passive verb or an adjective.

Thus, do you think I shouldn't rely on this rule "If "by" is used, it could refer either to an action (passive) or a state (adjective). If a different preposition is used (e.g. "with" or "through"), it refers to a state (e.g. "the gate was already covered with leaves"; "he is frozen with fear"), unless an agent is mentioned."?

That rule works for me (because some cases which you regard as actions, I regard as states). But if you find it unhelpful, please ignore it.


But, I have started a case (I have been faced with an issue => "An issue has faced me.), which is definitely an action. A different preposition is used ("with") although it doesn't refer to a state . Is it since an agent("an issue") is mentioned?
But, I see people say "I have faced an issue." => "An issue faced me."



Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 10:48:43 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
Quote:

A cooperator wrote:
Quote:
Finally: you didn't comment on this below.
But, I mean as long as the sentence in passive form 'I hate to be made a fool of' is fine. Then, definitely, this sentence has the following active form 'I hate someone to make a fool of me.'. Which means it doesn't matter if we say 'I hate to be made a fool of by someone.' or 'I hate to be made a fool of.'. I.e if we mentioned to the agent or not,it will still refer to an action.

Hence, why was I told

It does not feel natural to use the active infinitive with an agent - the participle is more normal.
"I hate someone to make a fool of me" just sounds completely wrong.
"I hate to be made a fool of" sounds perfectly natural.

This is not a question of grammar. It is a question of style - what native speakers actually say. There is no 'rule' for it.


My question is regardless if the agent is mentioned or not in "I hate to be made a fool of by someone.", I think the active form "I hate to be made a fool of" would be "I hate someone to make a fool of me.".
Thus, as long as it does feel natural to use the participle "I hate to be made a fool of" and that passive infinitive must have an active form, which is "I hate someone to make a fool of me", then the latter "the active form" does feel natural to use with an agent. I hope that explain it in plain language.


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
Audiendus
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 11:30:13 PM
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A cooperator wrote:
[He wasn't anywhere to be seen.=> He was hidden.
You are to be congratulated.=> You deserve congratulation.
This behaviour is to be encouraged. =>This behaviour is good and should be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done. - We'll have to buy a new car. (=> There is no way of putting it right.)

Yes, you are correct. (In a different context, "there is nothing to be done" might mean "there is nothing that needs to be done".)

Since you understand these sentences, I can see no point in trying to put the passive infinitives into an active form. It does not serve any useful purpose. The last one (in the sense that you mention) could be written as "There is nothing that we can do" or "There is nothing that anyone can do". Active forms for the others, however, would be long and unnatural, e.g.

He wasn't anywhere where someone could see him.
You are such that people should congratulate you. [this sounds completely unnatural]
This behaviour is such that people should encourage it.

(I have used "someone" and "people" depending on which seems more appropriate to the meaning of each particular sentence.)

I can think of no reason to use these unnatural active forms, and I don't think it is worth spending time on working them out.
Audiendus
Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2017 11:39:37 PM
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A cooperator wrote:
But, I have started a case (I have been faced with an issue => "An issue has faced me.), which is definitely an action. A different preposition is used ("with") although it doesn't refer to a state . Is it since an agent("an issue") is mentioned?
But, I see people say "I have faced an issue." => "An issue faced me."


I have nothing further to say on this point. I have clearly explained my view.
Audiendus
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 12:00:14 AM
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A cooperator wrote:
My question is regardless if the agent is mentioned or not in "I hate to be made a fool of by someone.", I think the active form "I hate to be made a fool of" would be "I hate someone to make a fool of me.".
Thus, as long as it does feel natural to use the participle "I hate to be made a fool of" and that passive infinitive must have an active form, which is "I hate someone to make a fool of me", then the latter "the active form" does feel natural to use with an agent. I hope that explain it in plain language.

I can only repeat:

"I hate someone to make a fool of me" is grammatically correct, but a native speaker would be unlikely to say it.

In mathematics, you can change the subject of an equation, and the answer will be equally correct. But language does not work like that. You say that "the passive infinitive must have an active form", but sometimes the (or an) active form sounds so unnatural that it is unacceptable.
palapaguy
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 12:37:04 AM

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Now we can all finally hope that Coop's five-week multi-threaded mission is at an end.
thar
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 3:14:55 AM

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Don't be discouraged. This is a difficult topic. If it were simple, you would have got a simple answer!

There are a lot of different issues tied upon this, and I think putting them all together is confusing.

1
Sometimes the meaning of a verb means it can be used in two ways.
If you face an issue, then the issue faces you!
So, you are faced with an issue.
That is just how that verb is used.

2
For dynamic verbs it is clear if you are describing the action or the state, using g a participle or an adjective.
For static verbs, the difference becomes smaller, until sometimes you can't tell exactly which it is closer to.
Two native speakers might give you two different answers if you asked then which it was.
Or, more likely, they would say 'why does it matter?'. Does it help, to be able to label it? I know parsing sentences is a technique people are taught, but it should only be a tool to help you understand the sentence, or compose your own. When labelling the individual words becomes more work than understanding the the sentence, it is not useful.

3
There are some constructions that just exist in one form to express one meaning. The who!e thing has meaning. You can't change one part of it - you have to think about the whole meaning and what you are trying to express. Ypou might have to express it in a different way.

4
Just because you technically can produce some grammatical form, doesn't mean that always produces anything that you would say. It has to be needed to express an idea.

The problem is knowing when it is a viable expression, and that just comes from experience.

Passives, participles, adjectives, they come in patterns, and even native speakers get it wrong before they become accustomed to applying the right pattern in the right situation.

I think my main advice from that would be don't take one rule and try to apply it to everything.
Instead look at the examples, how they are constructed and if they match the patterns of anything else you have seen.

Above all, keep the meaning and context in your mind - the need to express an idea is what produces a sentence,
The way that sentence is constructed is so that, when all those words are put together in that particular context, they express a particular meaning. It may not seem logical, if you analyse it, but that is what the population over time have come up with.
There may be several ways of getting to the same place!

I apologise for typos - weird additional letters or letters missing. I think I have caught most, but if there is a mistake, don't try to work out what that strange word means - just guess what I meant to type.)
A cooperator
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 3:41:56 PM

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Audiendus wrote:

This is not a question of grammar. It is a question of style - what native speakers actually say. There is no 'rule' for it.


Although it is out of topic, on 13, December, 2012, when asking some other forum member this question shown in the screenshot below, he told me the same phrase of " a question of style". So, what is meant with "a question of style"?



Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 4:29:22 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
A cooperator wrote:
[He wasn't anywhere to be seen.=> He was hidden.
You are to be congratulated.=> You deserve congratulation.
This behaviour is to be encouraged. =>This behaviour is good and should be encouraged.
There is nothing to be done. - We'll have to buy a new car. (=> There is no way of putting it right.)

Yes, you are correct. (In a different context, "there is nothing to be done" might mean "there is nothing that needs to be done".)

Since you understand these sentences, I can see no point in trying to put the passive infinitives into an active form. It does not serve any useful purpose. The last one (in the sense that you mention) could be written as "There is nothing that we can do" or "There is nothing that anyone can do". Active forms for the others, however, would be long and unnatural, e.g.

He wasn't anywhere where someone could see him.
You are such that people should congratulate you. [this sounds completely unnatural]
This behaviour is such that people should encourage it.

(I have used "someone" and "people" depending on which seems more appropriate to the meaning of each particular sentence.)

I can think of no reason to use these unnatural active forms, and I don't think it is worth spending time on working them out.


Thanks a lot, Audiendus,
I was trying having the active forms whenever coming across a passive construction since when A does something to B, there are often two ways to talk about it. If we want A(the doer) to be the subject, we use an active verb: built, speak, is repairing. If we want B(the "receiver" of the action) to be the subject, we use: was built,, is spoken, is being repaired, will be changed. So, I'll be familiar with two ways and when I use one and when I use the other one.
Or otherwise; you think I must take those constructions as they were and just memorize these expressions.


Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 4:43:18 PM

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Audiendus wrote:
A cooperator wrote:
Yes, "motionless leave" can do something if we consider it as "an issue", in "an issue has faced me."
Thus,
The gate was already covered with leaves." => "Leaves already covered gate."

I have been faced with an issue => "An issue has faced me."

He is frozen with fear. => "Fear freezes him."

If you wish to regard all these as actions, you are free to do so. Others may disagree. As I said, there is no definite answer.

A cooperator wrote:
As a result, I would be still confused about whether P.P is used as part of a passive verb or an adjective.

Thus, do you think I shouldn't rely on this rule "If "by" is used, it could refer either to an action (passive) or a state (adjective). If a different preposition is used (e.g. "with" or "through"), it refers to a state (e.g. "the gate was already covered with leaves"; "he is frozen with fear"), unless an agent is mentioned."?

That rule works for me (because some cases which you regard as actions, I regard as states). But if you find it unhelpful, please ignore it.


Audiendus, it is really an interesting rule. But, why do you think these passive sentences don't obey it. (I.e. different preposition is used, and agent is not expressed, and it still refers to an action.)
This house was built in 1486. (Passive)
German is spoken in Austria. (Passive)


However, if no prepositions are being used at all, then how to know if a past participle is part of a passive verb or an adjective. For instance,
I know parsing sentences is a technique people are taught, but it should only be a tool to help you understand the sentence, or compose your own. When labelling the individual words becomes more work than understanding the the sentence, it is not useful.




Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
A cooperator
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 5:04:35 PM

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thar wrote:
Don't be discouraged. This is a difficult topic. If it were simple, you would have got a simple answer!

There are a lot of different issues tied upon this, and I think putting them all together is confusing.

1
Sometimes the meaning of a verb means it can be used in two ways.
If you face an issue, then the issue faces you!
So, you are faced with an issue.
That is just how that verb is used.


Thanks a lot, Thar,
But if we have applied the rule of how to transfer active sentence to its corresponding passive sentence, then we will have been faced with an similarity issue.
1- I face an issue. (Active)
2- An issue faces me. (Active)
Imagine that you must convert both sentences above to the corresponding passive sentences, then you must put the subject of the active form as the agent of the passive form, and the object of the active form as the subject of the passive form. Let's start.
1- An issue is faced with me.
2- I am faced with an issue.





Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
thar
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 5:12:20 PM

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You refer to 'a different preposition' - but you are not looking at the whole sentence.


Why does it say the house was built in 1486?
Because 'in 1486' is how you express the date something happened.

Why does it say German is spoken in Austria?
Because 'in Austria' is how you express a location in a country.


You are so focused on the one part of the sentence you are forgetting things you already know, about the rest of the sentence. They have nothing to do with what structure is used in the rest of the sentence. As adverbial phrases, they could be put at the beginning of the sentence, if you felt like it, although that would change the emphasis.
Eg
In 1486 the house was built.
That conveys a different idea because you are presenting the information in a different way.

Look at the whole thing, and what it means.
Don't focus immediately on one part, because it is making you misunderstand the rest.


About needing an agent - I haven't read all the posts so I don't know the prior discussion, and I won't try to answer that directly.

But think about when people use the passive, and why.

Who built the house?
Maybe we don't know, maybe we don't care.
But we don't have to, because that is not important.
The house was built in 1486.
That conveys the information we want to convey.


The distinction between adjective and verb is not as simple as having an agent. It depends on the meaning.
If the house was built in 1486 you know someone must have built it then. That is evident from the meaning.
But another verb might not do the same.




A cooperator
Posted: Monday, December 11, 2017 5:46:12 PM

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thar wrote:

Why does it say German is spoken in Austria?
Because 'in Austria' is how you express a location in a country.

Who built the house?
Maybe we don't know, maybe we don't care.
But we don't have to, because that is not important.
The house was built in 1486.
That conveys the information we want to convey.


The distinction between adjective and verb is not as simple as having an agent. It depends on the meaning.
If the house was built in 1486 you know someone must have built it then. That is evident from the meaning.
But another verb might not do the same.


Thanks a lot,
But,
Firstly: I still don't know if 'spoken' is part of a passive verb or an adjective.

Secondly: imagine removing the prepositions in 'The house was built', 'German is spoken', then past participle is still part of a passive verb?

Finally: if no prepositions are being used at all, then how to know if a past participle is part of a passive verb or an adjective. For instance,
I know parsing sentences is a technique people are taught, but it should only be a tool to help you understand the sentence, or compose your own. When labelling the individual words becomes more work than understanding the the sentence, it is not useful.



Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
palapaguy
Posted: Tuesday, December 12, 2017 12:18:47 AM

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"When a past participle is used as part of a passive verb or as an adjective?"

That's an advanced English-language concept. It would be better, however, to express your question using correct entry-level conversational English, as "When is a past participle used as part of a passive verb or as an adjective?"

I believe you should master English fundamentals before spending so much time on advanced topics. The best way to learn the fundamentals is by enrolling in a quality course for English students.
thar
Posted: Tuesday, December 12, 2017 12:56:41 AM

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A cooperator wrote:
thar wrote:

Why does it say German is spoken in Austria?
Because 'in Austria' is how you express a location in a country.

Who built the house?
Maybe we don't know, maybe we don't care.
But we don't have to, because that is not important.
The house was built in 1486.
That conveys the information we want to convey.


The distinction between adjective and verb is not as simple as having an agent. It depends on the meaning.
If the house was built in 1486 you know someone must have built it then. That is evident from the meaning.
But another verb might not do the same.


Thanks a lot,
But,
Firstly: I still don't know if 'spoken' is part of a passive verb or an adjective.

Secondly: imagine removing the prepositions in 'The house was built', 'German is spoken', then past participle is still part of a passive verb?

Finally: if no prepositions are being used at all, then how to know if a past participle is part of a passive verb or an adjective. For instance,




One question, in response to all these.
OK, more than one, to be accurate.

Does it matter?

If you know what to call it, does it change what the sentence means? No, because you work out the label from the meaning.

Does it change the way you would compose a sentence yourself? No, because you compose the sentence to express a meaning.



Call it a participle, call it an adjective, call it Sinan, - what has actually changed?
What influence does that have on what you read or write?
Is it useful work to keep trying to fit a label to it?


A cooperator
Posted: Tuesday, December 12, 2017 5:47:44 AM

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thar wrote:
Does it matter?

If you know what to call it, does it change what the sentence means? No, because you work out the label from the meaning.

Does it change the way you would compose a sentence yourself? No, because you compose the sentence to express a meaning.



Call it a participle, call it an adjective, call it Sinan, - what has actually changed?
What influence does that have on what you read or write?
Is it useful work to keep trying to fit a label to it?


Thanks a lot all of you very much indeed,
I think I should have said when I must let past participle be used as part of a passive verb and when I must let it be used as an adjective while composing my own sentence to express a meaning.
Thus, if I only intended to let P.P in these sentences be a state describing the subject, I can omit the preposition. Or that would still convey that an action is still done to the subjects "German" "house", or "people", no matter if a preposition is mentioned or not.
German is spoken.
The house was built.
I know parsing sentences is a technique people are taught, but it should only be a tool to help you understand the sentence, or compose your own.


Could you please let me know if the active form of the underlined phrase would be rephrased as "I know parsing sentences is a technique which someone teaches people." if yes, then the verb "teach" has two objects, "a technique" and "people".

I know parsing sentences is a technique people are taught, but it should only be a tool to help you understand the sentence, or compose your own

Whoever doesn't own what he promises to those who do not deserve must not promise it.
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