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Er 4 - Er + passive sentences


Learn the theory

The small word er is used in 5 ways. Here we take a look at the fourth one. Click here* for an overview of er.

 Er in passive sentences

Passive sentences can have a grammatical subject, but the actual actor (the person or object doing the action) is left out. When there is no grammatical subject of the grammatical subject is indefinite, er is used. Let's take a look at a few examples.

Passive sentence with a definite subject (no er)

  • Active sentence: Ik lees het boek.

  • Passive sentence: het boek wordt gelezen.

Passive sentence with a indefinite subject (with er)

  • Active sentence: Ik lees een boek.

  • Passive sentence: Er wordt een boek gelezen.

Passive sentence without a subject (with er)

  • Active sentence: Ik lees.

  • Passive sentence: Er wordt gelezen.

Meer voorbeelden

  • Er worden liedjes gezongen.

  • Er wordt luid gezongen.

  • Er wordt veel gelachen tijdens de lunch.

  • Er wordt een appel gegeten.

  • Er worden broodjes gegeten.

  • Er wordt aan de weg gewerkt.

  • Er worden sinaasappels verkocht.

Do you want to know more about er in Dutch language? Then take a look at the fifth and last ER: ER with a preposition!

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