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When you have to tell someone they're wrong you can say "He needs to be told he is wrong". But can you say "He needs to be explained he is wrong"?

I don't think it's correct because "explain" is followed by "to", you explain something to someone.

The verb "say" is the same way and we don't say "He needs to be said he's wrong".

Am I right?

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    Yes - he needs to have it explained to him that/why he is wrong - or just someone needs to explain to him that he's wrong.
    – user96060
    Commented Jun 13, 2019 at 5:17

2 Answers 2

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The specific syntax is wrong. It needs to be rephrased in some way:

He needs to be told he is wrong.
He needs to have it explained to him that he is wrong.

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You can't just explain to somebody. You have to explain something to somebody.

That means you cannot say explain me, him, her, etc. You must say explain something to me (to him, to her).

For example:

Please explain him the situation. (incorrect)

Please explain the situation to him. (correct)

In your example above, the first example you provided is perfectly acceptable. You could also say:

You need to explain to him that he is wrong.

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