''To participate'' in the Passive Voice

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Bad Habit

New Member
Russian
Is it possible to use the verb ''to participate'' in the passive voice? Although it's grammatically correct, I'm still full of doubts about the ''style''.
For example:
The meeting was participated by Mr. Smith.
Does it sound right for native speakers of English?
 
  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    First, 'participate' doesn't take objects in the active voice. It requires the preposition 'in', so the active is:

    Mr Smith participated in the meeting.

    Now we can form passives from the objects of prepositions too, so the passive would be:

    The meeting was participated in by Mr Smith.

    This sounds somewhat unnatural to me. I'm unlikely to say it, but it is certainly possible, and there are plenty of examples of "participated in by" on the Web.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    ETB is spot-on, but I'll add the note that among bureaucrats and so called "management experts" these days, particularly in the U.S., there's an annoying proclivity to misuse intransitive verbs - among other things, so you might well see incorrect examples.
     

    Bad Habit

    New Member
    Russian
    ETB is spot-on, but I'll add the note that among bureaucrats and so called "management experts" these days, particularly in the U.S., there's an annoying proclivity to misuse intransitive verbs - among other things, so you might well see incorrect examples.
    Thanks a lot for your note, sdgraham. And sorry to both of you for my slip of typing :( Of course, I do know that the verb is intransitive and that there should have been ''in''. I just chose not to focus on that when I got the response from entangledbank because what I really needed was the opinion of a native speaker who, unlike me, can feel the ''style'' of the whole phrase. Thanks a lot again.
     
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