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I got survived.

vs.

I survived.

When I was talking with my friends I told them, "I got survived from that accident." Suddenly all of my friends laughed at me said, "dude, use proper English."

Please tell me the difference between those two sentences and when to use them

  • 3
    To survive is an intransitive verb, but I got [past participle] is a passive construction. And intransitive verbs cannot be made passive in English. – FumbleFingers Aug 9 '15 at 14:24
  • One would only say "I got survived" in jest, to indicate that you had been compelled to sit through back-to-back Survivor episodes. – Hot Licks Aug 9 '15 at 14:26
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    @Hot Licks: You can certainly say John was survived by his son - but curiously enough, in such contexts we can safely assume John didn't in fact "survive". – FumbleFingers Aug 9 '15 at 14:43
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    @FumbleFingers. So you can say "I was survived by my son" only if you are dead . . . – Keith Aug 10 '15 at 0:51
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    this should definitely be sent to ELL. – dbliss Aug 10 '15 at 4:29
13

We survived; we escaped; we celebrated ...these are Active Voice.

we were saved; we were hunted down; we were followed ...these are Passive Voice.

Some passives have the form: we got saved, we got rescued; we got given tea and biscuits.

For got passive, see: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/grammar/british-grammar/get-passive

6

"Survive" is often used as an intransitive verb, so in your case you would say "I survived." To use it as a transitive verb you would say "I survived the accident."

"Survive" can be used in another way as a transitive verb, as a slightly euphemistic term for outliving a family member. For example:

She survived her husband by 30 years, and passed away at the age of 100.

When referring to the person who (has just) died we would say

He is survived by his wife and two children.

("is survived" not "get survived.")

2

"To get survived" doesn't exist at all in English. You can only say "to survive".

You can " get drunk" or "get fired" or "get married" etc. But you can't "get died" or "get born", for example.

2

I think it may be logical, if slightly less grammatical, for a ghost to declare that it got survived (e.g. "I was survived by my wife" is entirely valid, the use of got seems questionable).

But, realistically, the statement "I got survived" made without a subject is an incorrect statement.

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    "I got survived" means that I'm dead but somebody is still alive. – Andreas Blass Aug 10 '15 at 0:50
  • yes, that is precisely what i was trying to say :) – Steven Lu Aug 10 '15 at 2:18
1

I survived would be a better way to say it. It is because you survived and at at the end of the day, it is your survival that counts. You are not mentioning anybody else's contribution in that survival. It is your survival.

However, if you still wish to go for passive voice, you may say, I got saved. You may have been saved by chance, co-incidence or God. But if you say i got survived, it would sound wrong because you can be saved by someone else but it is you and only you who can survive for yourself.

  • If someone says "I got saved", as likely as not, they mean "my soul was saved", which is a euphemism for conversion to Christianity. – jrrk Aug 10 '15 at 9:10
  • "I got saved" implies someone intervened and prevented injury. Whereas it was probably just simple luck that prevented the OP from being more seriously injured. – Level River St Aug 10 '15 at 17:47

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