The DICT Development Group
3 definitions found
for passive voice
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :
Passive \Pas"sive\, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See
1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving
impressions or influences; as, they were passive
spectators, not actors in the scene.
The passive air
Upbore their nimble tread. --Milton.
The mind is wholly passive in the reception of all
its simple ideas. --Locke.
2. Receiving or enduring without either active sympathy or
active resistance; without emotion or excitement; patient;
not opposing; unresisting; as, passive obedience; passive
The best virtue, passive fortitude. --Massinger.
3. (Chem.) Inactive; inert; unreactive; not showing strong
affinity; as, red phosphorus is comparatively passive.
4. (Med.) Designating certain morbid conditions, as
hemorrhage or dropsy, characterized by relaxation of the
vessels and tissues, with deficient vitality and lack of
reaction in the affected tissues.
Passive congestion (Med.), congestion due to obstruction to
the return of the blood from the affected part.
Passive iron (Chem.), iron which has been subjected to the
action of heat, of strong nitric acid, chlorine, etc. It
is then not easily acted upon by acids.
Passive movement (Med.), a movement of a part, in order to
exercise it, made without the assistance of the muscles
which ordinarily move the part.
Passive obedience (as used by writers on government),
obedience or submission of the subject or citizen as a
duty in all cases to the existing government.
Passive prayer, among mystic divines, a suspension of the
activity of the soul or intellectual faculties, the soul
remaining quiet, and yielding only to the impulses of
Passive verb, or Passive voice (Gram.), a verb, or form
of a verb, which expresses the effect of the action of
some agent; as, in Latin, doceor, I am taught; in English,
she is loved; the picture is admired by all; he is
assailed by slander.
Syn: Inactive; inert; quiescent; unresisting; unopposing;
suffering; enduring; submissive; patient.
[1913 Webster] Passive balloon
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :
Voice \Voice\, n. [OE. vois, voys, OF. vois, voiz, F. voix, L.
vox, vocis, akin to Gr. ? a word, ? a voice, Skr. vac to say,
to speak, G. erw[aum]hnen to mention. Cf. Advocate,
Advowson, Avouch, Convoke, Epic, Vocal, Vouch,
1. Sound uttered by the mouth, especially that uttered by
human beings in speech or song; sound thus uttered
considered as possessing some special quality or
character; as, the human voice; a pleasant voice; a low
He with a manly voice saith his message. --Chaucer.
Her voice was ever soft,
Gentle, and low; an excellent thing in woman.
Thy voice is music. --Shak.
Join thy voice unto the angel choir. --Milton.
2. (Phon.) Sound of the kind or quality heard in speech or
song in the consonants b, v, d, etc., and in the vowels;
sonant, or intonated, utterance; tone; -- distinguished
from mere breath sound as heard in f, s, sh, etc., and
Note: Voice, in this sense, is produced by vibration of the
so-called vocal cords in the larynx (see Illust. of
Larynx) which act upon the air, not in the manner of
the strings of a stringed instrument, but as a pair of
membranous tongues, or reeds, which, being continually
forced apart by the outgoing current of breath, and
continually brought together again by their own
elasticity and muscular tension, break the breath
current into a series of puffs, or pulses, sufficiently
rapid to cause the sensation of tone. The power, or
loudness, of such a tone depends on the force of the
separate pulses, and this is determined by the pressure
of the expired air, together with the resistance on the
part of the vocal cords which is continually overcome.
Its pitch depends on the number of aerial pulses within
a given time, that is, on the rapidity of their
succession. See Guide to Pronunciation, [sect][sect] 5,
3. The tone or sound emitted by anything.
After the fire a still small voice. --1 Kings xix.
Canst thou thunder with a voice like him? --Job xl.
The floods have lifted up their voice. --Ps. xciii.
O Marcus, I am warm'd; my heart
Leaps at the trumpet's voice. --Addison.
4. The faculty or power of utterance; as, to cultivate the
5. Language; words; speech; expression; signification of
feeling or opinion.
I desire to be present with you now, and to change
my voice; for I stand in doubt of you. --Gal. iv.
My voice is in my sword. --Shak.
Let us call on God in the voice of his church. --Bp.
6. Opinion or choice expressed; judgment; a vote.
Sic. How now, my masters! have you chose this man?
1 Cit. He has our voices, sir. --Shak.
Some laws ordain, and some attend the choice
Of holy senates, and elect by voice. --Dryden.
7. Command; precept; -- now chiefly used in scriptural
So shall ye perish; because ye would not be obedient
unto the voice of the Lord your God. --Deut. viii.
8. One who speaks; a speaker. "A potent voice of Parliament."
9. (Gram.) A particular mode of inflecting or conjugating
verbs, or a particular form of a verb, by means of which
is indicated the relation of the subject of the verb to
the action which the verb expresses.
Active voice (Gram.), that form of the verb by which its
subject is represented as the agent or doer of the action
expressed by it.
Chest voice (Phon.), a kind of voice of a medium or low
pitch and of a sonorous quality ascribed to resonance in
the chest, or thorax; voice of the thick register. It is
produced by vibration of the vocal cords through their
entire width and thickness, and with convex surfaces
presented to each other.
Head voice (Phon.), a kind of voice of high pitch and of a
thin quality ascribed to resonance in the head; voice of
the thin register; falsetto. In producing it, the
vibration of the cords is limited to their thin edges in
the upper part, which are then presented to each other.
Middle voice (Gram.), that form of the verb by which its
subject is represented as both the agent, or doer, and the
object of the action, that is, as performing some act to
or upon himself, or for his own advantage.
Passive voice. (Gram.) See under Passive, a.
Voice glide (Pron.), the brief and obscure neutral vowel
sound that sometimes occurs between two consonants in an
unaccented syllable (represented by the apostrophe), as in
able (a"b'l). See Glide, n., 2.
Voice stop. See Voiced stop, under Voiced, a.
With one voice, unanimously. "All with one voice . . .
cried out, Great is Diana of the Ephesians." --Acts xix.
From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :
n 1: the voice used to indicate that the grammatical subject of
the verb is the recipient (not the source) of the action
denoted by the verb; "`The ball was thrown by the boy' uses
the passive voice"; "`The ball was thrown' is an
abbreviated passive" [syn: passive voice, passive]
[ant: active, active voice]
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