I was bitten by a dog.

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jesusguime

Banned
Chinese
A dog bit me.
I was bitten by a dog.



Hi,
We know that the first in the above falls into the sentence pattern--Subject + transitive verb + object.
But what about the second sentence? Does it also fall into the same pattern as the first? Or does it belong to "Subject + intransitive + subject completement?" Thanks.
 
  • jesusguime

    Banned
    Chinese
    Thanks, cyberpedant.
    Our language has the passive voice as English does, but my trouble is whether the second sentence in my first post falls into "S+Vt+O" or "S+Vi+SC."
     

    facula

    New Member
    English - USA
    Hello
    "By a dog" is a prepositional phrase (with 'dog' as the object of the preposition 'by') that modifies the action of the verb. At the same time, it answers the question 'who bit me?' I would label it an adverbial phrase.
    I'm not sure what you mean by a 'subject completement' (maybe compliment?) but "by a dog" is definitely not a part of the subject.
    Hope that helps...
     

    cyberpedant

    Senior Member
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    I'm not sure whether a normally "transitive" verb is considered to be "intransitive" when it is in the passive voice. Perhaps our grammatically more expert fellow forer@s will clarify.
     

    dougelly

    Member
    England, English
    Mmm, I was wondering the same thing, cyberpedant. I don't think I've ever seen it done, but that doesn't necessarily mean anything:)

    I'm sure, though, that the structure of jesusguime's second sentence is neither subject - transitive verb - direct object nor subject - intransitive verb - subject complement. Different people might well analyse it differently, but I'd call it subject - verb - adverbial.
     
    Last edited:

    jesusguime

    Banned
    Chinese
    Thanks, guys.
    When I said the second sentence might belong to "S+Vi+SC," I meant "bitten by a dog" is viewed as the object complement. Does this sound right to you?
     

    dougelly

    Member
    England, English
    No, sorry - there's no object in the sentence, and you can't have an object complement without an object.
     

    cyberpedant

    Senior Member
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    "By a dog" is a prepositional phrase modifying the verb, therefore adverbial.

    I [subject] was bitten [verb]
    .........................\by a dog [prepositional/adverbial phrase]
     
    Last edited:

    GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    There is no such thing as passive voice for an intransitive verb.

    Just because the verb is in the passive voice does not change the fact that it is still a transitive verb. Indeed, the ability to use the passive voice might be taken as proof that the verb is a transitive verb.

    There can be no "direct object" in a passive voice sentence because the recipient of the action is funcitoning as the subject of the sentence.
     
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