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  1. When is the bank open?

  2. When is the bank opened?

  3. When does the bank open?

I want to ask what time the bank opens. I thought the last one (#3) is correct, but I saw in a book that the first one (#1) is correct. Is it possible the second one (#2) would be correct?

Basically, my question is: Which one or ones are correct?

13

The first and the third are correct, but mean different things:

When is the bank open?

Answer: Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm.

When does the bank open?

Answer: Tomorrow at 8am.

The first question asks for the bank's business hours, the other for the point in time when the bank opens up for the day.


Edit as requested:

When is the bank opened?

Answer: When an employee has opened the safe, booted the computer system, straightened his tie, unlocked the door and turned the "we're open/closed" sign.

This sentence is completely different from the other two: It asks for the "opened state" not for a time. It can be used, but is arguably the rarest of the three.

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  • 2
    There's a third question you didn't address: "When is the bank opened?" I recommend clarifying why this question doesn't fit with the others (i.e. that it asks how to tell when the bank is in an open state, rather than what time it would become open) in order to completely address this question. – talrnu May 18 '15 at 20:21
10

All three are grammatically correct, but they have different meanings.

1)

When is the bank open?

This is asking for the hours during which the bank is open. Another way to say this is "What are the bank's hours?", or "What hours is the bank open?"

2)

When is the bank opened?

This is talking about opening as an action someone carries out. The employees who are responsible for opening the bank will talk about it this way. "The manager opened the bank at 8," means that she was the employee who unlocked the doors and did any other work to prep the bank for the day's business. It wouldn't be used to tell a customer what the hours are.

3)

When does the bank open?

This is asking for the time the bank opens. This is what you want here. It can also be phrased "What time does the bank open?"

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5

It is possible.  It doesn't seem natural in my dialect, but it is a grammatically sound sentence.

The verb of "When is the bank opened?" is "is opened".  This verb employs the passive voice, present tense, indefinite aspect and interrogative mode.  An active voice equivalent would be "When does someone open the bank?"

The reason that this doesn't sound natural to me is that I expect the intransitive sense of the verb "to open" when the subject is a business or institution.  A perfectly natural example of the grammar in question is "When is the safe opened?"  I expect a bank to act on its own behalf, but I don't expect a safe to act at all.  In my mind, there should be an implied someone or something that opens the safe.

Your last example does seem natural.  The verb of "When does the bank open?" is "does open". This verb employs the active voice, present tense, indefinite aspect and indicative mode.  In the active voice, the subject "the bank" performs the action.  There is no object for this verb.  This is the intransitive sense of the verb.

Your first example also seems natural.  The verb of "When is the bank open?" is "is".  In this case, "open" isn't a verb.  It's an adjective.  The grammar of "When is the bank open?" is the same as the grammar of "When is John happy?"

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  • "When was the bank opened?" would be the correct form. Opened is a past-tense word, not a present-tense or future-tense word. – phyrfox May 18 '15 at 21:03
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    I have to disagree. "Opened" is also a participle form. It's used to form the passive voice and the perfect aspect in all tenses: was opened, is opened, will be opened, had opened, has opened, will have opened, had been opened, has been opened, will have been opened. – Gary Botnovcan May 18 '15 at 21:08
  • I forgot about future tense, actually, but present tense still doesn't use "opened". According to verbix.com/webverbix/English/open.html, which looks correct to me, "is" is used with "opening", as in "he is opening the bank" (present indicative form). You wouldn't use "is" with "opened". Can you show a resource that shows "is opened" as proper? – phyrfox May 18 '15 at 21:19
  • The verb "is opening" employs the active voice, present tense, and continuous aspect. The verb "is opened" employs the passive voice, present tense, and indefinite aspect. The verb "is being opened" employs the passive voice, present tense, and continuous aspect. The verb "has been opened" employs the passive voice, present tense, and both the perfect and continuous aspects. Please note, the page you cite does not show a single passive voice construction. There are (at least roughly) as many constructions in the passive voice as there are in the active. – Gary Botnovcan May 18 '15 at 21:30

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