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Narration Rules

Changing from Direct into Indirect Speech

Elimination of inverted commas.


Change of pronouns.
Certain words that change when converted into indirect.
Change regarding questions and exclamations.
In the indirect speech the commas are omitted.
The conjunction that - except in certain cases like commands, exclamations and
questions - is used to join the reporting speech and the reported speech.
The capital letter of the first word of the reported speech is replaced by a small
letter.
The pronouns in the reported speech are to be changed when necessary.
The tense of the reporting verb is never changed.
The tense of the verb in the reported speech changes to agree with the tense of the
verb in the reporting speech to maintain the proper sequence of tense.

Change of Pronouns
Pronouns of the first person are changed to the person of the subject of the
reporting speech.
For example: He says, I have no money with me.
He says that he has no money with him.
Pronouns of the second person are changed to the person of the noun/pronoun to
whom the reported speech is addressed.
For example: You said to Zain, I would be happy to welcome you in my house.
You said to Zain that you would be happy to welcome him in your house.
Generally, the pronouns of third person in the direct speech remain unchanged in
the indirect speech.
For example: He said, She is a good person.
He said that she was a good person.
Rules Regarding Tense
a. If the verb of the reporting speech is in the Present or Future tense, the tense of the
reported speech does not change.
Present/Future Indefinite---- Remains the same
Present/Future Cont.--------- Remains the same
Present/Future Perfect------- Remains the same

Present/Future Perfect Cont.- Remains the same


b. If the verb of the reporting speech is in the past tense, the verbs of the reported speech
in the present tense- are changed to past tense.
Present Indefinite is changed to Past Indefinite
Present Continuous-------to Past Continuous
Present Perfect----------to Past Perfect
Present Perfect Continuous-- to Past Perfect Continuous
c. If the verb of the reporting speech is in the Past tense and the tense of the reported
speech is in the Future tense then will/shall change to would (in exceptions it changes
to should).
d. If the verb of the reporting speech is in the Past tense and the tense of the reported
speech is also in the Past tense then following changes take place:
Past Indefinite changes to Past perfect
Past Continuous-----to Past Perfect Continuous
Past Perfect remains as Past Perfect
Past Perfect Continuous remains as Past Perfect Continuous
Note
If the reported speech expresses a universal truth, its tense will not change.

Brain Teasers
Keeping the rules in mind change the narration of the following:
1. I said, I have done my duty.
I say, I have done my duty.

2. You said to me, You did right to come.


You will say to me, You did right to come.

3. I said, He was trying for a job in the airlines.


He said, The enemies were bombing the country.

4. I said, My father does not like people telling lies.


The producer said to the actor, I dont want you in this picture.

5. Let us invite some friends to our sons birthday, said the mother.
I said to my friends, Please listen to what I am saying.

6. He said to me, What a pity! You did not come.


She said, Alas! I am the innocent cause of our sorrows.