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REPORTED SPEECH Reporting Statements

We use the Reported Speech (or Indirect Speech) when we are telling what someone says or said. The reporting verb may be in the Present or in the Past: - if it is in the present tense, there are no tense changes. - if it is in the past tense, there are tense, person and place changes. Ex.: Direct speech: Sarah: I am a journalist. Reported speech (Present): Sarah says (that) she is a journalist. Reported speech (Past): Sarah said (that) she was a journalist. The conjunction that can be omitted; To report a statement we use the reporting verbs: - Say + something: Tom said he loved being a surgeon. - Tell + someone + something: Tom told me he loved being a surgeon. - Other reporting verbs: reply, explain, promise, claim, announce and declare.

Verb Tenses Changes Direct Speech

Present Simple
Julia said: I want to be a teacher.

Reported Speech
Simple Past
Julia said (that) she wanted to be a teacher.

Present Continuous (am/is/are + ing)

I am going to the doctor, Julia said.

Past Continuous (was/were + ing)

Julia said (that) she was going to the doctor.

Simple Past (ed / 2 column)

Julia: I worked as a cook in a hotel


Past Perfect (had + p.p.)

Julia said (that) she had worked as a cooker in a hotel.

Present Perfect (has/have + p.p.)

Jack: John has given up his job. I have been writing my CV, Jack said.

Past Perfect (had + p.p.)

Jack said (that) John had given up his job. Jack said (that) he had been writing his CV.

Present Perfect Continuous (has/have + been + ing) Past Perfect Continuous (had + been + ing) Future (will + inf.)
Jack said: I will be a gardener someday.

Conditional (would + inf.)

Jack said (that) he would be a gardener someday.

Modals: can; may; must

The boss said: You can do this job, Sarah. Peter said: Susan may go to university, Peter said: I must find a job. Julia said: You mustnt smoke in here.

could; might; had to

The boss said (that) Sarah could do that job. Peter said (that) Susan might go to university. Peter said (that) he had to find a job ( present necessity/obligation) Julia said (that) he mustnt smoke there. (regulations/prohibition/probability)

Note 1: Verbs in the Past Continuous, Past Perfect and Conditional undergo no tense change. Note 2: The verb used to and the modals would, should, could and might do not change in the Reported Speech.

Time Changes Direct Speech

now today / tonight tomorrow yesterday this (morning) last (week) next (week / month / year)

Reported Speech
then / at that moment that day / night the next day / the following day the day before / the previous day that (morning) the (week) before / the previous (week) the following (week / month / year)

Place Changes Direct Speech

here this

Reported Speech
there that

Pronouns and Determiners Changes Direct Speech Reported Speech

I / you (subject) we / you (subject) me / you (object) us / you (object) my / your mine / yours our / your ours / yours this these Personal Pronouns she / he they him / her them Possessive Pronouns / Determiners his / her his / hers their theirs Demonstrative Pronouns / Determiners that those

Reporting Questions (Indirect Questions) When we report questions we can use the reporting verbs: ask, want to know, wonder and inquire. In reported questions we use the same word order as in a statement: Subject + Verb: Ex.: Teacher: How are you? The teacher asked Sam how he was. Yes / No questions (beginning with a verb) are reported with if or whether. Ex.: Teacher: Do you have a dream job, Sam? The teacher asked Sam if / whether he had a dream job.

Wh-questions are reported with the same question word used in the direct question. Ex.: Teacher: Which one do you prefer, Suzy? The teacher asked Suzy which one she preferred.

Reported Imperatives (Indirect Imperatives)

Imperative clauses change into infinitive clauses preceded by a verb such as tell, command, order, warn, recommend, advise. Ex.: Teacher: Be careful. The teacher recommended his students to be careful. Negative imperatives (Dont) - not goes before the infinitive. Ex.: Teacher: Dont make silly mistakes in the exam. The teacher advised his students not to make silly mistakes in the exam. Exclamations Exclamations become statements in the reported speech. Ex.: Jane: What a wonderful job! Jane said that it was a wonderful job.