Please tell if this correct or incorrect and why. This is what I was taught but it sounds so awkward. "He has been eaten the apples."

  • 3
    Sheesh. If you were "taught" that, you need to look for a new teacher. – curious-proofreader Oct 26 '16 at 5:32

He has been eaten the apples

It's incorrect

Try: He has been eating the apples, or He has eaten the apples

It really depends on the intended meaning.


No, it is not. Assuming that "by" was omitted in the original sentence. That is the original sentence should have been:

He has been eaten by the apples.

It is a passive sentence which can be rewritten in an active one as:

The apples have eaten him

I am guessing the original sentence should be:

He has eaten the apples.

The passive of that sentence would be:

The apples have been eaten by him.

So the difference is in who is the agent or doer in the sentence and what is undergoing the action. In your original sentence, the agents are the apples and the undergoer is he. This is rather awkward unless it is a cartoon where inanimate objects have animate characteristics.

  • Well, of course, if we insert a conjunction, as in "He has been AND eaten the apples", we might be able to offer the OP a little bit of encouragement, what? – Peter Point Oct 26 '16 at 6:01
  • 1
    @PeterPoint Salutations. Whatever do you mean by your sentence, my friend? "He has been AND eaten the apples." What??? I need to call it a night. Au revoir. – Richard Kayser Oct 26 '16 at 6:11
  • 1
    You cannot rewrite the sentence in the question to an active one like that because there is no agent marker by. “He has been eaten by the apples” would be equivalent to “the apples have eaten him”, but “he has been eaten the apples” is just ungrammatical and nonsensical. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Oct 26 '16 at 7:40
  • @RichardKayser Similar to “he’s only gone and eaten the apples”. Or more similarly, “the doctor’s been and examined her”. Colloquial, but grammatical in BrE, though my gut tells me it's less acceptable in AmE. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Oct 26 '16 at 7:41
  • @JanusBahsJacquet thanks. I updated my answer to reflect the assumption I made. – user2840286 Oct 26 '16 at 7:42

Purely grammatically, user2840286 might have had a point but reality trumps grammar. The only way you could possibly come close to "The apples have eaten him" would be in the Japanese saying about sake: “…the third cup drinks the man”

How likely is it that apples will eat your manhood, your humanity, your will to live, and leave you a hollow shell dependant on apples?

Technically 0_oVIRUNAo_0 said all there is to say

Pragmatically, curious-proofreader is equally right.

The “been and” guys are also correct but their worms infest a wholly different apple…

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy