1. The minister suffered problems.
  2. The minister was suffered by problems.

What is the correct one?

  • 3
    “The minister was suffered by problems” means the opposite. It means “Problems suffered the minister”, which makes no sense. Mar 24 '15 at 7:39
  • I think you're looking for "The minister suffered from (health) problems". That sentence is active voice. Dec 9 '15 at 1:13
  • I think you meant passive voice @SenjougaharaHitagi
    – Caroffrey
    Dec 9 '15 at 7:22

"The minister" Is the subject of this sentence. We can tell a few different ways. The first way is that the subject usually (but not always) comes right before the verb.

The Minister Suffered...

"The minister" is also the agent, as he is the one actually doing the verb (suffering). If the subject and the agent are the same, you want to use active voice.

The minister goes to church every Sunday.

John eats hamburgers.

I like to watch movies.

If the subject and the agent are different, you would use the passive voice. To do so for your sentence means to make "Problems" the subject. Although, "The minister" will still be the agent because he is still the one doing the suffering.

Problems are suffered by the minister.

Although, that last sentence is technically correct, it doesn't make very much sense. It implies that every problem is suffered by the minister. A better way to rewrite this sentence is to say

Many problems are suffered by the minister.


(Specific problems) are suffered by the minister.

You would probably only want to use a sentence in this form if you are talking about the problems, and not about the minister. For example:

There are many problems with the church. Low attendance, people not tithing, and the unwelcoming attitude of the members. However, most of these problems are suffered by the minister.

Passive sounds better here because the paragraph is talking about the various problems.

I really like the minister. He is kind and smart, and I enjoy his company. Although sometimes I feel sad for him. He suffers many problems, such as financial issues, family troubles, and poor health.

Active sounds better here because the paragraph is about the minister, and his life.

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