Direct and Indirect Speeches

Direct and Indirect Speeches

direct to Indirect Speech

What is direct and Indirect Speech?

Indirect speech: In grammar, when we want to report what someone said, without speech marks and without necessarily using exactly the same words, we use indirect speech. It is also known as reported speech. Look at the following sentences:

Direct speech: he says, “I am going to school.”

Indirect speech: he says that he is going to school.

In above sentences, the reporter delivers the message of the boy using his real words (e.g.“I am going to school.”) In the indirect speech sentence, the reporter delivers his message but in his own words without any change in the meaning. Thus, both direct and indirect speeches are two different ways of reporting a statement of person. In simple words, quoting a person using your own words is called an indirect speech.

Direct speech: Direct speech is also called reporting speech. There are two parts in a sentence in direct speech first part is known as reporting speech (in this sentence we know about reporting person) and the second part which is known as reported speech (indirect narration “example”, or indirect discourse). When we want to describe what someone said, one option is to use direct speech. We use direct speech when we simply repeat what someone says, putting the phrase between speech marks:

  • Saif came in and said, “I’m really happy”.

As you can see, with direct speech it is common to use the verb ‘to say’ and ‘to says’ (‘said’ in the past). But you can also find other verbs used to indicate direct speech such as ‘ask’, ‘reply’, and ‘shout’.

Basic Rules in Direct and Indirect Speech Changes

During the process, you will come across many important terms that you need to know better so that you can convert any direct speech into indirect speech easily and without any irritation. Consider the following rules.

  1. When we change direct speech to indirect speech always we will replace inverted commas with word ‘that’.
  2. When we combine reporting and reported speech we use that between these sentences.
  3. If the first part of the sentence does not include word said then tense will not be changed.
  4. At the end of reporting speech if there is a comma then it will be removed.

Say always will be changed into tell.

Says always will be changed into tells.

Said will be changed into told only in one condition when there is object in reporting speech.

Example:

Direct: You said to Saif, “you are going to Lahore”.

Indirect: you told Saif that he was going to Lahore. 

Changes in person of pronouns

1st person    2nd person      3rd person

Subject         Object            No change

I, we,              you                   he, she, it,

My, our,          your           they and noun.

us, me            your           they and noun

  • 1stPerson pronouns in reported speech are always changed according to the subject of the reporting speech.
  • 2ndPerson pronouns in reported speech are always changed according to the object of the reporting speech.
  • 3rdPerson pronouns in reported speech are not changed.

Important Word Changes in Direct and Indirect Speeches

The above rules are mandatory for converting direct speech into indirect speech. Hence, they should be memorized thoroughly. The following examples cover all the aforementioned rules. So, focus on every sentence to know how the above-mentioned rules have been used here.

Some special words will be changed when direct speech changes into indirect speech

Now               into                          then

Today            into                     that day

Yesterday     into      the previous day

This               into                              that

Last night    into     the previous night

Tomorrow   into               the next day

These          into                           those

Here            into                             there

Next day   into         the following day

Ago            into                            before

Come        into                                   go

Will            into                             would

Shall          into                             should

May           into                             might

Can            into                             could

Good Morning,      into            greeted

Good Evening,      into             greeted

Good Day             into              greeted

Madam              into         Respectfully

Sir                  into              Respectfully

Changes of Verbs in Direct and Indirect Speeches:

  • If the reporting speech is in present tense or future tense, then no change is required to be made in the verb of reported speech.

Direct Speech: he says, “I live in Pakistan”.

Indirect Speech: he tells that he lives in Pakistan.

Direct Speech: you say to me, “you will go to Lahore”.

Indirect Speech: you tell me that I shall go to Lahore.

Direct Speech: I say, “she was ill”.

Indirect Speech: I tell that she was ill.

How to change tense

Present indefinite will be changed into past into past indefinite tense.

(First form into second form)

Example:

Direct: I said, “I go to school”.

Indirect: I said that I went to school.

 Present continues will be changed into past continues tense.

(is, am, are into was, were)

Example:

Direct: Raza said, “I am a boy”.

Indirect: Raza said that he was a boy.

 Present perfect will be changed into past perfect tense.

(has, had into had)

Example:

Direct: You said to Saif, “you are going to Lahore”.

Indirect: You told Saif that he was going to Lahore. 

 Present perfect continues will be changed into past perfect continues tense.

(has been, have been into had been)

Example:

Direct: The guard said to the passenger, “the train has come”

Indirect: The guard told to the passenger that the train had come.

Past indefinite will be changed into  past perfect tense.

(second form into had)

Example:

Direct: Aslam said, “They played cricket”.

Indirect: Aslam said that they had played cricket.

Past continues will be changed into past perfect continues tense.

(was, were into had been)

Example:

Direct: The policeman said, “The thief has been stealing for two year”.

Indirect: The policeman told that the thief had been stealing for two year.

 

NotePast perfect, past perfect continues, future indefinite, future continues, future perfect, future perfect continues tense will not be changed.

Assertive Sentences in Direct and Indirect Speeches

Sentences that make a declaration are called assertive sentences. These sentences may be positive, negative, false, or true statements. To convert such sentences into indirect speech, use the rules as declared above except said is sometimes replaced with told. Look at the following examples:

Direct Speech: She says, “I am writing a letter to my brother.”

Indirect Speech: She says that she is writing a letter to her brother.

Direct Speech: She says, “I was not writing a letter to my brother.”

Indirect Speech: She says that she was not writing a letter to her brother.

Direct Speech: She said to me, “I am writing a letter to my brother.”

Indirect Speech: She told me that she was writing a letter to her brother.

Imperative Sentences

Imperative sentences are sentences that give an order or a direct command. These sentences may be in the form of advice, appeal, request, or order. Mostly, it depends upon the forcefulness of the presenter. Thus, a full stop (.) or sign of exclamation (!) is used at the end of the sentence.

When we will be convert these types of sentences into indirect speech, follow the following rules along with the above-mentioned rules:

  • Both sentences will be joined with the conjunction
  • If in the reported sentence word do not then it will be changed with the word not to.

Example

Direct speech: Aslam said, “Do not beat him”.

Indirect speech: Aslam ordered to not beat him.

  • The direct verb is changed according to indirect speech in case order the speaker gives a direct command. Then said will be changed into ordered For example:

Direct Speech: The father said to me, “Sit down.”

Indirect Speech: The father ordered me to sit down.

  • The direct verb is changed according to indirect speech in case request the speaker gives a request command. Then said will be changed into request

For example:

Direct Speech: The man said, “Please show me your pen.”

Indirect Speech: the man requested to show him my door.

  • The direct verb is changed according to indirect speech in case guide the speaker gives a piece of advice. Then said will be changed into advised.

For example:

Direct Speech: The headmaster said, “Write neat and clean.”

Indirect Speech: the headmaster advised to write neat and clean.

  • The direct verb is changed according to indirect speech in case forbade the speaker stopped to do something. Then said will be changed into forbade.

For example:

Direct Speech: The teacher said, “Don’t sit.”

Indirect Speech: The teacher forbade to sit.

Optative & Exclamatory Sentences

The sentence which expresses a prayer, keen wish, curse, happiness etc. is called an optative sentence. This kind of sentence generally starts with ‘may’ and ‘wish’. Sometimes, ‘may’ remains hidden.

The sentence which expresses a sudden and deep excitement, wonder, shock, or sorrow, etc. is called an exclamatory sentence. In this kind of sentence must have exclamation mark (!) at the end of sentence or in the central of the sentence.

Example:

  • May you succeed in the test!
  • May you get well soon!
  • Would that I was rich!

When we will be converted these types of sentences into indirect speech, follow the following rules along with the above-mentioned rules:

  • In a prayer sentence said will be replaced by
  • When we will be changed direct speech to indirect speech always we will be replaced inverted commas that.

Example:

Direct speech: He said, “May you live long”.

Indirect speech: He prayed that I might live long.

  • In a hope sentence said will be replaced by
  • When we will be changed direct speech to indirect speech always we will be replaced inverted commas that.

Example:

Direct speech: The father said, “May my son get first position”.

Indirect speech: The father wished that his son might get first position.

  • In a glad & happysentence said will be replaced by exclaimed with joy or exclaimed with joyfully. And exclamatory mark (!) will be removed.
  • When we will be changed direct speech to indirect speech always we will be replaced inverted commas that.

Example:

Direct speech: The boys said, “Hurrah! We have won the match”.

Indirect speech: The boys exclaimed with joy that they had won the match.

  • In a sad or sorrow sentence said will be replaced by exclaimed with sorrow or exclaimed with sorrowfully.
  • When we will be changed direct speech to indirect speech always we will be replaced inverted commas that.

Example:

Direct speech: The bagger said, “Ah! I am undone”.

Indirect speech: The exclaimed with sorrow that he was undone.

Interrogative Sentences

Which sentences, ask questions, are called interrogative sentences. Every interrogative sentence has question mark (?) at the ends.

For example:

  • Where are you going?
  • Where did you live?
  • Are you want to go with me?

To change interrogative sentences from direct speech into indirect speech, follow the following rules along with the above-mentioned rules:

  • When we will be changed sentence direct speech to indirect Said will be replaced by asked.
  • If interrogative sentence will be started from “Wh” mean when, whom, what, where, who, which, why, how, whose when we will be changed sentence direct speech to indirect speech inverted commas will not be replaced. Just it will be removed.
  • If the reported sentence will be started form helping verb, then if will be used in place of that.
  • After the changing sentence mark of interrogation (?) will be replaced with full stop (.).

Examples:

Direct speech: He said to me, “Who are you”?

Indirect speech: He asked me who I was.

Direct speech: He said to me, “Where are you going”?

Indirect speech: He asked me where I was going.

Direct speech: Sunny said to me, “will you help me”?

Indirect speech: Sunny asked me if I would help him.

Universal Sentence

Sentences which have natural truth or universal truth in the part of reported speech are called universal sentences.

Example:

  1. Allah is one.
  2. Honesty is the best policy.

To change universal sentences from direct speech into indirect speech, follow the following rules along with the above-mentioned rules:

  • When we will be changed sentence direct speech to indirect Saidwill be replaced by
  • When we will be changed direct speech to indirect speech always we will be replaced inverted commas with that.
  • Always remember that universal truth will never change so we will not be changed reported speech portion.

Examples:

Direct speech: The teacher said to the boys, “The earth revolves around the sun”.

Indirect speech: The teacher told the boys that the earth revolves around the sun.

Direct speech: Saif said, “Allah is one”.

Indirect speech: Saif told that Allah is one.

Direct speech: She said to him, “Honesty is the best policy”.

Indirect speech: She told him that honesty is the best policy.

Direct speech: Sunny said to Farrukh, “The sun rises in the east”.

Indirect speech: Sunny told Farrukh that the sun rises in the east.