We have seen that past participles formed from transitive verbs act as adjectives of the object in the sentence. Sentences containing such past participles are often in passive voice.

Let us understand this concept with the help of a few examples. The sentences given below are in pairs. In each of the pairs, the first sentence (active voice) contains a verb and the second sentence (passive voice) uses a past participle formed from the same verb.

1. Vāṇijo vatthaṃ kiṇāti – The merchant purchases a cloth.
Vāṇijena vatthaṃ kītāṃ (hoti) – A cloth is purchased by the merchant.

2. Kassakassa bhariyā khettasmā dhenuṃ āhari – The farmer’s wife brought the cow from the field.
Kassakassa bhariyāya khettasmā dhenu āhaṭā (ahosi) – The cow was brought from the field by the farmer’s wife.

3. Seṭṭhī yācakassa mūlaṃ adāsi – The rich man gave money to the beggar.
Seṭṭhinā yācakassa mūlaṃ dinnaṃ – The money was given by the rich man to the beggar.

4. Kaññāyo uyyāne gītāni gāyiṃsu – The girls sang songs in the park.
Kaññāhi uyyāne gītāni gāyitāni – Songs were sung by the girls in the park.

5. Buddho sāvakānaṃ dhammaṃ desesi – The Buddha taught Dhamma to the disciples.
Buddhena sāvakānaṃ dhammo desito – The Dhamma was taught by the Buddha to the disciples.

6. Upāsakā buddhaṃ pūjenti – The lay devotees pay respect / revere the Buddha.
Upāsakehi buddho pūjito (hoti) – The Buddha is revered by the lay disciples.

7. Itthiyo nāvāya nadiṃ tariṃsu – The women crossed the river by (in) a boat.
Itthīhi nāvāya nadī tiṇṇā (ahosi) – The river was crossed by the women in (using) a boat.

Please Note :
• The verbs (hoti, ahosi, ahesuṃ etc) are often dropped from sentences containing past participles. In such sentences the past participles indicate the action, and thus play the role of verbs.

• Please pay attention to the cases of subject and object of the sentences given above, with respect to active and passive voice :

Voice Subject Object
Active Nominative case Accusative case
Passive Instrumental case Nominative case

The cases indicated in the above table are used across all the nouns, pronouns, adjectives and numbers.

Last modified: Saturday, 23 March 2024, 9:32 AM