2 Direct Speech Quoting someone’s actual words: “I knew the answer,” he said.“Do you take sugar?” she asked.“Let’s go swimming,” Peter suggested.
3 Common reporting verbs add admit advise agreeannounce answer ask beg brag claimdemand explain insist order persuadepromise remind reply report saysuggest tell think warn whisper
4 Reporting Statements “I can’t help you.” He admitted that he can’t help us.“I’m very clever.” He thinks he’s very clever.
5 No change of tensesWhen we report the statements that were made in the present, we don’t change the tense of the original (direct) speech.“Intelligent life in the universe does not exist.” He says that intelligent life in the universe does not exist.
6 We don’t need to change the tense when we report things which are ‘timeless’, e.g. scientific theories.Already in ancient times, some philosophers believed that matter consists of atoms.
7 Change of tensesWhen we report the statements that were made in the past, we change the tense of the original (direct) speech.“My mobile phone has been out of action all day.” He said that his mobile phone had been out of action all day.
9 Present Simple Past Simple “I want to buy it.”He said that he wanted to buy it.Present Continuous Past ContinuousI’m writing a letter.”He said that he was writing a letter.
10 Present Perfect Past Perfect “I’ve come to mend your car.”He said (that) he had come to mend my car.Present Perfect Continuous Past Perfect Continuous“We’ve been living here for years.” He said (that) they’d been living there for years. (‘d = had)
11 Past Simple Past Perfect “I saw your brother.”He said (that) he had seen my brother.He said (that) he saw my brother. (We need not change the tense if the order of events is clear.)Past Continuous Past Perfect Continuous“I was trying to do it.” He said (that) he had been trying to do it.
12 will would can could “I’ll help you.” He said (that) he would help me.can could“I can do it.” He said (that) he could do it.
13 may might must had to (or: must) “I may do it.” He said (that) he might do it.must had to (or: must)“I must go.”He said (that) he had to go.He said (that) he must go.
14 The Past Perfect Simple and Continuous do not change! “They had arrived an hour early.” I said they had arrived an hour early.
15 Changes of Pronoun and Adverb Alex said, “I’ll meet you here again tomorrow at 3.30.” Alex said he would meet us there again the next day at 3.30.
16 here thereago beforebefore earlierlast week the week beforenext week the next week / the week after / the following weeknow then / that day / at that momentthis that / thethese those / the
17 this morning that morning today that daytomorrow the next daytonight that nightyesterday the day before / the previous day