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Unit 46. Reported speech (1) (He said that …)
(косвенная речь 1)

Study this example situation:

Unit 46. Reported speech (1) (He said that …) You want to tell somebody else what Tom said.
There are two ways of doing this:
 
You can repeat Tom's words (direct speech):
Tom said ‘I'm feeling ill.’
 
Or you can use reported speech:
Tom said that he was feeling ill.
Compare:
direct:
 
reported:
Том said
 
Tom said that
‘I am feeling ill.’
 
he was feeling ill.
In writing we use ‘ and ’ to show direct speech.

 

When we use reported speech, the main verb of the sentence is usually past (Tom said that… / I told her that… etc.). The rest of the sentence is usually past too:

You can leave out that:

In general, the Present form in direct speech changes to the Past form in reported speech:

am/is -> was
are -> were
do/does -> did
have/has -> had
will -> would
can -> could
want/like/know/go etc. -> wanted/liked/knew/went etc.

Compare direct speech and reported speech:

You met Judy. Here are some of the things she said to you in direct speech:
 
‘My parents are very well.’
‘I'm going to learn to drive.’
‘John has given up his job.’
‘I can't come to the party on Friday.’
 
 
‘I want to go away for a holiday but I don't know where to go.’ ‘I'm going away for a few days. I'll phone you when I get back.’
Later you tell somebody what Judy said. You use reported speech:
Judy said that her parents were very well.
She said that she was going to learn to drive.
She said that John had given up his job.
She said that she couldn't come to the party on Friday.
She said that she wanted to go away for a holiday but (she) didn't know where to go.
She said that she was going away for a few days and
would phone me when she got back.

 

The Past Simple (did / saw / knew etc.) can usually stay the same in reported speech, or you can change it to the Past Perfect (had done / had seen / had known etc.):

direct Tom said: ‘I woke up feeling ill, so I didn't go to work.’
reported Tom said (that) he woke up feeling ill, so he didn't go to work.
or
Tom said (that) he had woken up feeling ill, so he hadn't gone to work.

See Unit 47 Reported speech (2)
(косвенная речь 2)

See Unit 49 Questions (2) (Do you know where …? / She asked me where …)
(вопросы 2)

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