ruled accidental

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New Member
China and Chinese
The death, ruled accidental, adds yet another tragedy to America's most famous clan.

What does "ruled accidental" mean here? why not use " rule accidentally"...just a guess? Is it an idiom or phrase?
  • Trisia

    Senior Member

    I'd assume it means that the judge ruled that it had been an accident. It's like saying "the death, considered an accidental one, adds yet..." only your sentence implies that is was decided in a court of law that it was only an accident. :)


    Senior Member
    The death was ruled accidental at the time, and the police in Braintree, Mass., released Dr. Bishop, then 21, without conducting a full investigation. --taken from the NYT
    This part of the bill was ruled unconstitutional.---taken from Longman Dictionary
    Dear all,

    My question is, why a passive verb (ruled) takes an adjective? To me, a noun should follow a passive verb as well as a active verb, such as "he gave a paper to her" or "she was given a paper by him". Could you please clear up my doubt, or show me some exmaples of verbs of the kind. Thanks in advance.



    Senior Member
    English - US
    The adjective applies to the subject of the sentence. Adding the noun back in results in repetition.
    The death was ruled an accidental death.
    The bill was ruled an unconstitutional bill.


    Senior Member
    Here are a few examples:

    He was judged guilty and sentenced to five years in prison.
    She was considered worthy to be crowned.
    The 2010 Olympics were declared open by the Governor General of Canada.

    Matching Mole

    Senior Member
    England, English
    Verbs like this, and others, take an adjective as an object, where the condition of the subject is being described:

    The bridge was considered unsafe.
    His actions were thought unwise.

    You might think of it as "to be" or "as being" being omitted.
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