By: Teacher Joseph
Another day, Another topic. And then I was thinking, “What topic should I write about now?” It was like, “uhm,” then I was like “Huh?” And then suddenly, “Ahh!”Bet you didn’t get that, did you? Don’t worry. that is not what I’m actually going to talk about: interjections and all that. I was actually thinking of discussing how to actually say what others said to me; should I say it as it is, or should I relay the iterations in the way I want to say it?
Still confused? Or is it confusing? And I think that’s another interesting topic I’m digressing to… So, enough beating around the bush. Let’s talk quotes and reports (and for business-minded people, that would be different again) [“Say what?”], or in a more familiar terminology in the English learning world that we live in: quoted or reported speech, or to some: direct and indirect speech.
(Yes. That is the actual topic we’re going to talk about today.)
Have you ever had a chance to talk to people who are so animated with their story and most of the time would actually say what the other person (or people, or the character/s in his or her story) have actually said accompanied with all the actions and gestures he could muster? Or with someone who tells it like the way he/she might have understood the situation and relayed it in his or her own words? Still confused huh? I guess, by the looks on your faces, it would seem so, hehe. I know that’s how I feel hahaha. why don’t I just give you a short description of what I’ve been jabbering about for a while now?
BASIC THINGS TO REMEMBER
Direct speech: Use of speaker’s exact words.
Indirect speech: conveying the message of the speaker in our own words.
When changing direct speech to indirect speech consider the factors like modals, reporting verb, place,
time, pronoun, and even tenses.
|Direct Speech||Indirect Speech|
|Must||Had to/ Would have to|
|Ought to||Ought to|
- Direct Speech: He said, ” I can make some pancakes for breakfast.”
- Indirect Speech: He said that he could make some pancakes for breakfast.
- Direct Speech: She said,” I may have to travel back to Australia at the end of the month.”
- Indirect Speech: She said that she might have to travel back to Australia at the end of the month.
- Direct Speech: He said, ” I must go on a holiday trip or else I’ll go mental.”
- Indirect Speech: He said that he had to go on a holiday trip or else he’ll go mental.”
2. Reporting Verbs
If the reporting verb is in the past tense, then the direct sentence is changed in its past tense.
- Direct Speech: David said, “He is renewing the contract with the company.”
- Indirect Speech: David said that he was renewing the contract with the company.
The tense of direct speech remains unchanged when the reporting verb is in the present or future tense.
- Direct Speech: Cecil says, ” I am feeling older.”
- Indirect Speech: Cecil says that she is feeling older.
- Direct Speech: Cecil will say, ” I am feeling older.”
- Indirect Speech: Cecil will say that she is feeling older.
If the direct sentence contains the universal truth, then it remains unchanged in the Indirect Speech.
- Direct Speech: They said, “The sun is the center of the universe.”
- Indirect Speech: They said that the sun is the center of the universe
Wait for part 2 of this English lesson 🙂