DIRECT AND INDIRECT SPEECH

Direct and Indirect Speech (2)

Direct and Indirect Speech also direct speech, reported speech. Terms for kinds of grammatical construction in which reports are made of something said, written, or thought. Direct speech gives the exact words in the report, and in writing and print uses quotation marks, single as in ‘I know the answer,’ Jane said, double as in “I know the answer,” Jane said. Indirect speech conveys the report in the words of the reporter: for example, Jane said that she knew the answer (more formal), and Jane said she knew the answer (less formal). In direct speech, the reporting clause may appear initially (He said, ‘I’m finishing now and I’m going home’), medially (‘I’m finishing now,’ he said, ‘and I’m going home’), or finally (‘I’m finishing now and I’m going home,’ he said).

Source : http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1O29-DIRECTANDINDIRECTSPEECH.html

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Direct Speech

Direct speech repeats, or quotes, the exact words spoken. When we use direct speech in writing, we place the words spoken between quotation marks (” “) and there is no change in these words. We may be reporting something that’s being said NOW (for example a telephone conversation), or telling someone later about a previous conversation.

Examples
  • She says, “What time will you be home?”
  • She said, “What time will you be home?” and I said, “I don’t know! “
  • “There’s a fly in my soup!” screamed Simone.
  • John said, “There’s an elephant outside the window.”

Indirect Speech

Reported or indirect speech is usually used to talk about the past, so we normally change the tense of the words spoken. We use reporting verbs like ‘say’, ‘tell’, ‘ask’, and we may use the word ‘that’ to introduce the reported words. Inverted commas are not used.

She said, “I saw him.” (direct speech) = She said that she had seen him. (indirect speech)

‘That’ may be omitted:

She told him that she was happy. = She told him she was happy.

‘Say’ and ‘tell’

Use ‘say’ when there is no indirect object:

He said that he was tired.

Always use ‘tell’ when you say who was being spoken to (i.e. with an indirect object):
He told me that he was tired.

‘Talk’ and ‘speak’
Use these verbs to describe the action of communicating:
He talked to us.
She was speaking on the telephone.

Use these verbs with ‘about’ to refer to what was said:

He talked (to us) about his parents.

Source : http://www.edufind.com/english-grammar/direct-and-indirect-speech/

Statements in Reported Speech

1.2.  The introductory sentence in the Simple Present

If the introductory sentence is in the Simple Present, there is no backshift of tenses.

  • Direct Speech → Susan: “Mary works in an office.”
  • Reported Speech → Susan says (that)* Mary works in an office.

The introductory sentence is here: Susan says … → this sentence is in the Simple Present, so there is no backshift of tenses.

1.2. The introductory sentence in the Simple Past

If the introductory sentence is in the Simple Past, there is mostly backshift of tenses.

  • Direct Speech → Susan: “Mary works in an office.”
  • Reported Speech → Susan said (that)* Mary worked in an office.

The introductory sentence is here: Susan said … → this sentence is in the Simple Past, so there is backshift of tenses.

Source : http://www.englisch-hilfen.de/en/grammar/reported_statements.htm

Reported Questions

In Reported speech the question becomes a statement. Mind the word order: subject – verb

1.1. The introductory sentence is in the Simple Present

If the introductory sentence is in the Simple Present, there is no backshift of tenses.

  • Direct Speech → Susan: “Does Mary work in an office?”
  • Reported Speech → Susan asks if/whether Mary works in an office.

The introductory sentence: Susan asks … → is in the Simple Present. There is no backshift of tenses. The auxiliary do is dropped in the Reported speech.

1.2. The introductory sentence in the Simple Past

If the introductory sentence is in the Simple Past, there is usually backshift of tenses.

  • Direct Speech → Susan: “Does Mary work in an office?”
  • Reported Speech → Susan asked if/whether Mary worked in an office.

The introductory sentence: Susan asked… → is in the Simple Past. There is backshift of tenses.

Source : http://www.englisch-hilfen.de/en/grammar/reported_frage.htm

Reported Commands

Form

  • affirmative commands → to + infinitive
  • negative commands → not + to + infinitive

1.1. Affirmative commands

  • Direct Speech → Dad: “Do your homework.”
  • Reported Speech → Dad told me to do my homework.

1.2. Negative commands

  • Direct Speech → Teacher: “Don’t talk to your friend.”
  • Reported Speech → The teacher told me not to talk to my friend.

1.3. The introductory sentence in commands

The word tell in introductory sentences in Reported Commands can be substituted with other words, e.g.

  • advise
  • ask

There is no backshift of tenses, no matter which tense is used in the introductory sentence.

Direct Speech

  • Dad: “Do your homework.”

Reported Speech

  • Dad tells me to do my homework.
  • Dad told me to do my homework.

Source : http://www.englisch-hilfen.de/en/grammar/reported_aufforderung.htm

Statement Positive and Negative

Direct: She said, ‘I don’t want to come with you.’

Indirect: She said that she didn’t want to come with me.

 

Direct: She will say, ‘I don’t want to come.’

Indirect: She will say that she does not want to come.

Source : https://uogenglish.wordpress.com/english-lecture-notes/eng-102/306-2/

Backshift of tenses

If the introductory sentence in in the Simple Past, there is backshift of tenses in Reported Speech. We shift the tense used in Direct Speech one step back in Reported Speech. If we use Past Perfect or the modals would, could, should, might, must, ought to and needn’t in Direct Speech there is possibility to shift the tense back in Reported Speech.

Simple Present → Simple Past

Direct Speech Reported Speech
Peter: “I work in the garden.” Peter said (that) he worked in the garden.

Simple Past, Present Perfect, Past Perfect → Past Perfect

Direct Speech Reported Speech
Peter: “I worked in the garden.” Peter said (that) he had worked in the garden.
Peter: “I have worked in the garden.”
Peter: “I had worked in the garden.”

Auxiliaries, Modals

Direct Speech Reported Speech
Peter: “I will work in the garden.” Peter said (that) he would work in the garden.
Peter: “I can work in the garden.” Peter said (that) he could work in the garden.
Peter: “I may work in the garden.” Peter said (that) he might work in the garden.
Peter: “I would work in the garden.”

  • could
  • might
  • should
  • ought to
Peter said (that) he would work in the garden.

  • could
  • might
  • should
  • ought to
   

Present Progressive → Past Progressive

Direct Speech Reported Speech
Peter: “I‘m working in the garden.” Peter said (that) he was working in the garden.
Peter: “I was working in the garden.” Peter said (that) he had been working in the garden.
Peter: “I have been working in the garden.”
Peter: “I had been working in the garden.”

Past Progressive, Present Perfect Progressive, Past Perfect Progressive → Past Perfect Progressive

Direct Speech Reported Speech
Peter: “I was working in the garden.” Peter said (that) he had been working in the garden.
Peter: “I have been working in the garden.”
Peter: “I had been working in the garden.”

 

Source : http://www.englisch-hilfen.de/en/grammar/reported_statements.htm

Conversion of expressions of time and place

If there is an expression of time/place in the sentence, it may be changed, depending on the situation.

  • Direct Speech → Peter: “I worked in the garden yesterday.”
  • Reported Speech → Peter said (that) he had worked in the garden the day before.
Direct Speech Reported Speech
this evening that evening
today/this day that day
these days those days
now then
a week ago a week before
last weekend the weekend before / the previous weekend
next week the following week
tomorrow the next/following day
here there

 

Source : http://www.englisch-hilfen.de/en/grammar/reported.htm

Exercise

Complete the sentences in reported speech. Note whether the sentence is a request, a statement or a question.

  1. He said, “I like this song.”
    → He said ______________.
  2. “Where is your sister?” she asked me.
    → She asked me ____________.
  3. “I don’t speak Italian,” she said.
    → She said ______________________.
  4. “Say hello to Jim,” they said.
    → They asked _________________.
  5. “The film began at seven o’clock,” he said.
    → He said ______________________.
  6. “Don’t play on the grass, boys,” she said.
    → She told __________________.
  7. “Where have you spent your money?” she asked him.
    → She asked him _____________.
  8. “I never make mistakes,” he said.
    → He said that ________________.
  9. “Does she know Robert?” he wanted to know.
    → He wanted to know ___________.
  10. “Don’t try this at home,” the stuntman told the audience.
    → The stuntman advised the audience ______________.

Aswer Key

  1. He said that he liked that song.
  2. She asked me where my sister was.
  3. She said that she didn’t speak Italian.
  4. They asked me to say hello to Jim.
  5. He said that the film had begun at seven o’clock.
  6. She told the boys not to play on the grass.
  7. She asked him where he had spent his money.
  8. He said that he never made mistakes.
  9. He wanted to know if she knew Robert.
  10. The stuntman advised the audience not to try that at home.

Source : https://www.ego4u.com/en/cram-up/grammar/reported-speech/exercises?10

 

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