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Passive in "I wanna be loved by you"

English grammar questions, answered by Alan

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kyobancha
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Passive in "I wanna be loved by you"

Post by kyobancha » Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:25 am

A line from a well known song by Marilyn Monroe (Some Like It Hot) has been confusing me.

I wanna be loved by you.

The meaning is clear. Yet I have learned that in a passive construction the agent is not usually expressed. In the above line, however, the agent is indicated by "by you," which strikes me quite unusual. How do native speakers of English look at the construction above? Is this construction with "by you" sound OK?

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Joe
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Re: Passive in "I wanna be loved by you"

Post by Joe » Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:21 am

kyobancha wrote: โ†‘
Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:25 am
Yet I have learned that in a passive construction the agent is not usually expressed.
That seems like an exaggeration. In passive voice the agent does not have to be expressed, but it quite often is.

On the EnglishClub Passive Voice page you can see the following examples:

I am employed by Apple.
We have been notified by Head Office.
Dresden was firebombed by the Allies.


Native speakers view the construction of I wanna be loved by you as perfectly normal :mrgreen:
"We are not wholly bad or good, who live our lives under Milk Wood :-| " โ€” Dylan Thomas, Under Milk Wood

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