Passive voice in the present tense:

I am proved wrong.

Here we are using past participle of the verb "prove".

Why did we do that, given that the sentence is in the present tense? And how can we use the passive voice with the present and present continuous tense?


The passive voice always uses the 3rd (participle) form of the verb, even though the sentence might have any tense:

I am amazed by Justin Bieber. (present).

I was amazed by Justin Bieber last night. (past).

Justin Bieber has been attacked. (present perfect).

Ludwig van Beethoven had been seen at least once by his mother before he died. (past perfect).


  • "Justin Bieber was amaze me last night" -Past tense, Active voice."I was amazed by justin Bieber last night"-Past tense ,Passive voice. is it correct. – user1114 Mar 20 '13 at 16:45
  • @user1114 The passive voice version is correct. The active voice version should be "Justin Bieber amazed me last night." – Chris Mar 20 '13 at 16:48
  • We use Past participle(3rd form of the verb) in present tense for passive voice ,where else we can use past participle in present tense. – user1114 Mar 20 '13 at 16:49
  • 3
    There are two participial forms, and passive clauses can be made using either one. – snailplane Mar 20 '13 at 17:48
  • 2
    @user1114 Yes, and most of the time you'll want the past participle, as mentioned by Abody97. Not always, however--see the "concealed passive" as described by Geoffrey Pullum, as in "This car needs washing." – snailplane Mar 20 '13 at 18:34

The difference is who/what is performing the action.

I am amazing. // Active, I'm the one who amazes others. An adjectival use.

I was amazed. // Passive, I am not currently amazed but I was. I did nothing, someone/something else amazed me.

I am amazed. // Passive, but I am still amazed by something that happened in the past.

Your Answer

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