Reported speech : sentences and questions
|I like travelling. → She said that she liked travelling.
I’m leaving tomorrow. → He told her that he was leaving the next day.
I’ll always love you. → He said that he would always love me.
I passed the exam. → She told me that she had passed the exam.
I’ve forgotten my keys. → He said that he had forgotten his keys.
I can’t come. → She said that she couldn’t come.
I may be late. → He said that he might be late.
I must go. → She said that she had to go.
- When the reporting verb is in the past tense,the tenses in the sentence which is being reported usually change like this:
present > past
will > would
past simple / present perfect > past perfect
- Some modal verbs change, e.g can > could, may > might, must > had to.
Other modal verbs stay the same, e.g. could, might, should, etc.
- You usually have to change the pronouns, e.g.
‘I like Jazz.’ → Jane said that She liked Jazz.
- Using that after said and told is optional.
- If you reported what someone said on a different day or in a different place, some other time and place words can change,
e.g. tomorrow > the next day, here > there, this > that, etc.
I’ll meet you here tomorrow. → ’He said He’d meet me there the next day.
|SAY and TELL
Be careful – after said don’t use a person or an object pronoun:
He said he was tired. NOT
After told you must use a person or pronoun:
Sarah told Cally that she would call her. NOT
|‘Are you married?’ → She asked him if he was married.
‘Did she phone?’ → He asked me whether she had phoned.
‘What‘s your name?’ → I asked him what his name was.
‘Where do you live?’ → They asked me where I lived.
- When you report a question the tense change as in reported statements.
- When a question doesn’t begin with a question word, add if(or whether).
‘Do you want a drink?’ He asked me if /whether I wanted a drink.
- You also have to change the word order to subject + verb,and not use do/did.
quoted from Oxford English file Intermidiate MultiPack