Grammar | Band 7 Clauses 3 Series

IELTS Lessons, written by Sam Morgan and Tom Speed

In our first class on participle clauses we looked at how active participles can be used to create complex sentences.

This lesson will look at passive participle clauses​.

Learning to notice participle clauses will improve your reading skills. If you use participle clauses in your speaking and writing it will also improve your grammatical range and accuracy band score.


Academic Language Analysis

​Look at the following example sentences.
Example 1
The telegraph, which was developed in the 1830’s and 1840’s, completely changed communication.


​Example 1 is an example of a non-defining relative clause being used to add extra information to a main clause.  It can be rewritten (see examples 2 and 3).

Example 2 
The telegraph, developed in the 1830s and 1840s, completely changed communication.

Or

Example 3
Developed in the 1830s and 1840s
, the telegraph completely changed
communication.


​Examples 2 and 3 are examples of passive participle clauses. They have exactly the same meaning as example 1. Notice that the meaning is passive and that the relative pronoun ‘which’ and verb ‘be’ is omitted (deleted).


Exercise 1 | Identify the Grammar

Select the passive participle clauses in the following short text and then select the box below that they belong to.


Exercise 2 | Use the Grammar

Complete the following sentences with the past participle form of a verb from the box.
left   ·  shot   ·  implicated   ·  highlighted   ·  discovered   ·  caused  
Click or touch a word above
1. 10 times, the victim miraculously survived.
2. The landslide, by a week of heavy rain, destroyed the village.
3. in 1895 by Wilhelm Roentgen, x-rays remain an important medical tool.
4. The money on the kitchen table was intended for the shopping.
5. in the robbery, the three young me face up to 5 years in prison.
6. The problems by the survey will be addressed as soon as possible.


Exercise 3 | Practice the Grammar

​Rewrite the following sentences using passive participle clauses.
The first season of Big Brother was watched by millions of people. The first season of Big Brother was the most popular reality show.
(1) by millions of people, the first season of Big Brother was the most popular reality show.
In my opinion, companies shouldn’t sell clothes which are produced in sweatshops.
In my opinion, companies shouldn’t sell clothes (2) in sweatshops.
Olive oil which is made in this particular region is supposed to be the best.
Olive oil (3) particular region is supposed to be the best.
The temple was built in 1496. The temple was dedicated to the king.
(4) , the temple was dedicated to the king.
The explosion was heard thousands of miles away. The explosion of mount Krakatoa in 1883 was one of the loudest events in history.
(5) , the explosion of mount Krakatoa in 1883 was one of the loudest events in history.
Processed food is sold in most supermarkets. Processed food is an unhealthy alternative to home cooked food.
(6) , processed food is an unhealthy alternative to home cooked food.

As always, use the new language you have learnt in this lesson often when you are writing to practice and become comfortable and confident with it. Without practice, you will forget! 

We have two more exercises for you to try on Passive and Active Participle Clauses.

If you want to have a look at some free essay writing lessons, visit our Academic and General IELTS Task 2 Writing page.

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