May this get discerned passive voice?

Being chosen, however, is probably not enough.

Being, a participle verb, that goes to a gerund noun phrase Being chosen (and this may customarily seem [a thing done], an object)?

And in Being chosen, however, is probably not enough, what may customarily go as a thing done, an object, gets placed in a subject place in passive voice? So Being chosen gets discerned a subject of is and probably not enough, an object of is (in passive voice)? I may not get how to discern however, (maybe a "parenthetical"?), and in probably not enough, I think someone did text that there seemed a "fused determiner" here?

1 Answer 1


The gerund clause being chosen is indeed in the passive voice. Its Subject (the Patient, the person or persons who are chosen) is inferred from the context.

But this clause is not an independent clause—it cannot stand by itself as a sentence. Only clauses with finite verbs can be independent. (Finite verbs are those which are inflected for tense, and sometimes person and number. Infinitives, past/passive participles, and gerund-participles are nonfinite.)

The main clause does have a finite verb and it can stand by itself as a sentence: X is not enough. The gerund clause acts as the Subject of the main clause, X. What is not enough? Being chosen is not enough.

The main clause is in the active voice. Copulative BE does not take objects, only predicate complements; it cannot be cast in the passive voice, even though as an auxiliary it is a necessary component of the passive construction.

As you conjecture, however is a kind of "parenthetical". It is not a constituent of the sentence, a piece which is necessary to "constitute" the sentence, but an adjunct—something added.

In some contexts enough acts unambiguously as a "fused determiner", but here it is very difficult to detect a head with which enough has been fused. I'd see it as an adjectival. But whatever else it may be, it is certainly a predicative complement of is, which is all that is relevant to your question.

  • So gerund clause being chosen goes in passive voice. Finite and nonfinite verbs seems like interesting new information to me. I thank you. Maybe, it all together gets dictated a complete sentence? Things like auxiliary I may not get. It seems like a passive dependent gerund noun phrase a thing maybe customarily done or thing done to in a subject place. I guess I may think it like a patient, maybe, like (you, them, some person and or maybe thing[?]) maybe united into being chosen.
    – saySay
    May 31, 2015 at 3:21
  • I guess be in being chosen, a copulative here and maybe an auxiliary to being chosen gerund phrase? So however a parenthetical, or (adjunct). I may not get a grammatical function of head. And I guess probably not enough, predicative complement. I think some did text subject complement? I may get predicative complement. Probably not enough, object, predicative complement, enough adjective(?). I think I got abundant information here. I thank you, StoneyB.
    – saySay
    May 31, 2015 at 3:23
  • @StoneyB Thank you for an answer, I was in other question very confused about the complement. I thought "probably not enough" is a subject complement, because it is telling something about the subject "being chosen". Can you please tell how to determine if it's a subject complement or just a complement of the verb as is the case here. May 31, 2015 at 3:31

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