1.Rama married Sita
2.Sita was married by Rama
” The Teacher’s Travelogue ” prepared by the Regional Institute of India, Banglore discussed the use of active and passive voice.
It goes on to say that the passive voice( sentence 2) is grammatically correct but different in meaning from the active voice ( sentence 1)
According to the book the sentence 2 means Sita was married not to Rama but to somebody else.
It explains that Rama became a priest and performed the marriage rituals of Sita.
The example is shown with illustrations too.
I have taken the example because most of the students and some teachers passivize the active voice in the similar manner unknowingly.
I know that the correct passive voice is “Sita was married to Rama”.
Do native speakers understand the sentence in the similar way and agree that the change of preposition makes all the difference ?
“Rama married Sita” can have two meanings, either that Rama and Sita got married to each other, or that Rama carried out the ceremony in which Sita was married to someone else. However, it would nearly always be interpreted in the former way unless there is some context indicating that it should actually be interpreted in the latter (as an aside: I have fun with this construct since I can accurately say my Mum married my Sister).
“Sita was married by Rama” might in some grammatical sense be interpretable as saying that Sita and Rama married each other, but I cannot think of any circumstances under which a native speaker would use this construct to mean that and it would be almost certain to cause confusion. The normal way to phrase it would instead be “Sita was married to Rama”.
Source : Link , Question Author : successive suspension , Answer Author : Jack Aidley