Lesson 34 – الدَّرْسُ الرَّابِعُ وَالثَّلاثُونَ

Active and Passive Voiceالفِعْلُ المَبْنِي لِلْمَعْلُومِ وَالفِعْلُ المَبْنِي لِلْمَجْهُولِ

Active and Passive Voice

  • We are still in lesson thirty four of our free Arabic language course. This Arabic course with images and audios will help you learn Arabic.
  • We  have studied the Arabic verbal sentence, which have two basic components that must be always in the sentence, namely the verb and the doer.
  • If we look at the following sentences, we will find that every sentence has a verb and a doer of this verb.



The Prophet (PBUH) said: “He is not one of us who shows no mercy to children and respect to our elders.”

قال رَسُولُ الله – صلى الله عليه وسلم – "لَيْسَ مِنَّا مَنْ لَمْ يَرْحَمْ صَغِيرَنَا و يُوَقِّرْ كَبِيرَنا"

·         If we look at the example above, we note that the first verb is (قال) and the dower is (رَسُول الله). In the second sentence, the verb is (يَرْحَمْ) and the doer is a latent personal pronoun that is supposedly “any person”. The third verb we have in this example is (يُوَقِّر) and the doer is a latent personal pronoun that is supposedly “he”. All these verbs have a doer, i.e. the doer is known, even though in some cases it is a latent personal pronoun. This is why the verb here is called verb in the active voice ( الفعل المبني للمعلوم). Here are more examples of verbs in the active voice:



The police arrested the thieves

اِعتقلَت الشرطةُ اللصوصَ

The student wrote the lesson

كَتَبَ الطَّالِبُ الدَّرْسَ

The boy broke the glass

كَسَرَ الوَلَدُ الزُّجَاجَةَ

  • On the other hand, verbs in the passive voice are the verbs whose doer is omitted, i.e. the sentence becomes in the passive voice without any written doer, as in the following example:



The thieves were arrested

اُعْتُقِلَ اللُّصُوصُ

·         The verb (اُعْتُقِلَ ) which means (was arrested) has a doer who is the police. The doer was not written because it is well-known to all of us know well who has the authority to arrest people. View the following examples:



The lesson was written

كُتِبَ الدَّرْسُ

The glass was broken

كُسِرَتْ الزُّجاجَة

  • After omitting the doer and changing the vowelling of the verb, the object of the sentence (الدرسَ) becomes the subject of the passive (الدرسُ), which we call in Arabic (نائب الفاعل). Consequently, the fatħah ending of the object becomes đammah, i.e. it changes from the accusative into the nominative case.