I want to know the grammar case of these sentences

  1. He canceled that order minutes before it was to happen.
  2. He canceled that order minutes before it was happened.

Why in first sentence "to happen" has been used instead of "was happened". What is the difference between these two sentences in meaning


#2 is incorrect English. "Happened" is already in the past, so "was" is unnecessary. You can say, "He canceled that order minutes before it happened."

#1 is technically correct, but both of these examples suffer from another problem: An order doesn't "happen." An order is placed, and then it is fulfilled. To cancel an order, it must have been placed. So what you apparently want to say is "He canceled the order minutes before it was to be fulfilled."

  • it sounds like older-ish English "to do or not to do" type stuff. they used "to" a lot. but yes both would be wrong nowadays. Jan 8 '20 at 18:21

As was pointed out in a comment, "happen" is not really the best verb to use. It depends on context whether "fulfill," "deliver," "ship," etc. is what is meant.

Number two is simply wrong. "Happen" is an intransitive verb and has no passive voice. So the second sentence has no meaning although it will probably be understood as "happened" rather than the ungrammatical "was happened." Number one is grammatical.

Was to happen


Was [scheduled/expected] to happen

It does not entail that it did happen.

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