Is the following sentence grammatically correct?

It is moved from location A to B.

If yes, then which tense is being used here? I'm not sure if a past tense can be followed by is.

  • I think it should be It has moved or It has been moved.
    – hjpotter92
    Mar 18, 2013 at 9:01
  • 1
    @DreamEater It appears so. If it is the case, then this would be a present perfect. If you were to make it past form, this would become a past perfect (if the assumptions are correct of course). Mar 18, 2013 at 9:10
  • 1
    For past-tense, a simple It moved is perfect?
    – hjpotter92
    Mar 18, 2013 at 9:11
  • 1
    I disagree with these comments. I agree with Mistu4u's answer. A passive clause can be formed using a past participle, but that doesn't make it past, nor does it make it perfect.
    – user230
    Mar 18, 2013 at 11:22
  • @snailplane Upvoted and agreed. I speculated on my part that the OP wanted an explanation on a different sentence construction and elaborated on that... Wrongly. This is made all the more stupid on my part because in Dutch you ARE allowed to use the verb "to be" in present perfect form, for Dutch and English have very similar grammar rules. Mar 18, 2013 at 12:12

2 Answers 2


The sentence is purely grammatical. It is in passive voice. The sentence is:

It is moved from location A to B by somebody.

By somebody is implicit in this sentence. So if I change it into active voice, it becomes:

Somebody moves it from location A to B.

According the rule of voice change, if the active voice is in simple present, the passive voice changes into the following construction:

Active voice: John makes a cup of tea. --> Passive voice: A cup of tea is made by John.

You can check out the voice conversion rules on STUDYANDEXAM.COM (Passive Voice for All Tenses Rules)

  • 3
    +1 I've added a long Supplement; if you would like to incorporate any or all of it in your answer I will be happy to delete it. Mar 18, 2013 at 11:22
  • @StoneyB, Honestly I could have added those, but was too lazy to type all those, so instead added a link. What you have done is really worth some prize, let the upvotes play the role here, SE makers expected it to be i.e. better answers will get more upvotes. Let your answer garner more upvotes. :)
    – Mistu4u
    Mar 18, 2013 at 13:03
  • @StoneyB, Albeit I have seen practices where supplements like you added as an answer is edited into the already posted answer unless instead of being supplement they are complete answer to the question.
    – Mistu4u
    Mar 18, 2013 at 13:06
  • 1
    @EnglishLearner, There is no proof it happened in past, but it can be in simple present, So the passive voice construction makes sense here.
    – Mistu4u
    Mar 18, 2013 at 13:47
  • 1
    The present passive is fairly rare in English. If you are talking about something that only happens once, you would probably say "it is being moved from A to B". However, you could say "whenever a bin at A becomes full, it is moved from A to B". Mar 18, 2013 at 15:49


OP appears to be confused by the form moved. In this case the form does not represent a past tense but a past participle. In regular (weak) verbs, the two forms are identical, but they are used differently:

  • if the form heads the verb phrase, it is a tense and expresses completed past action. In the case of MOVE that action may be either transitive or intransitive:

    He moved it from A to B. (transitive: it is the Direct Object and is the Patient of the action, acted upon by he, who is both Subject of the sentence and Agent of the action)
    He moved from A to B. (intransitive: He, Subject and Agent, acts, but not upon another person or object)

  • if the form follows a form of BE or HAVE, it is a past participle:

    • if it follows a form of HAVE, the construction is perfect, designating a past action with relevance at the time expressed by the form of HAVE. MOVE may be either transitive or intransitive:

      He has moved it from A to B. (transitive, present perfect: the action was in the past but is still relevant in the present)
      He had moved from A to B by 1964. (intransitive, past perfect: the action took place before 1964 but was still relevant in 1964

    • if the form follows a form of BE, the construction is passive; the Subject of the construction is the Patient of the action, and the Agent is either not specified or is specified in a separate phrase. In this case MOVE can only be used in a transitive sense.

      This is the case involved in OP's question and Mistu4u's answer.

    • Note that it is possible for moved to be preceded by both a form of HAVE and a form of BE, creating a perfect passive construction. In this case it is HAVE which is inflected for person and tense, and the past participle of BE is employed: been.

      It has been moved from A to B.

  • 1
    Now that it's CW, do you mind if I reinstate my upvote?
    – user230
    Mar 18, 2013 at 15:47
  • @snailplane As long as it's not pulling votes from Mistu4u's answer, which is directly responsive, as this is not. Mar 18, 2013 at 15:59

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .