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Grammar Notes for lesson 22

Passive construction with 被 bèi

The passive construction with 被 bèi indicates how a particular object (abstract or physical) is dealt with or disposed of by somebody or something. The verbs in these constructions take complicated forms. They are verbs of method of action, plus other elements. Most of the elements that are attached to the main verbs in 被 bèi sentences are similar to those used in the 把 bǎ  construction. For instance, 书 已 经 被 他 借 走 了 shū yǐjīng bèi tā jiè zǒu le the book has been borrowed by him. In 把 bǎ  sentences this will be 他 已 经 把 书 借 走 了tā yǐjīng bǎ  shū jiè zǒu le he has already borrowed the book.