Let's look at the sentence.

I am bored.

Now what does the sentence mean? If I consider 'bored' as an adjective it means I am bored right now. And if I consider the sentence as a passive voice of present Indefinite tense then it means someone bores me. Right? Now which meaning do I have to take? Which meaning is suitable?

  • In the real world, no one speaks in random isolated sentences. There is always context to disambiguate. And if there is ambiguity, the listener will attempt to clarify or find out more, e.g "Why?"
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 5:58

1 Answer 1


If it is a passive voice, you would have a subject (present or implied) that applies the verb (to bore) you


  • He talked for an hour, I am bored (passive voice) (implies bored by his speech)

  • Chick flick after Chick flick, I am bored (passive voice) (implies bored by the movies)

  • There's nothing to do, I am bored (adjective)

  • I am bored (adjective), I want to go out

In any case, context matters. With enough context, people can figure out which meaning you are referring to.

  • Passive voice sentence can be used without the doer. It's not necessary to tell that I'm bored by his speech. Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 5:43

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