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Grammar and StructureGRAMMAR & STRUCTURE
Reported Speech



Reported speech reports what a person said, thought, or told another person.


Dave said that he was hungry.


Reported speech:

  • uses reporting verbs (say, tell, ask) to explain what a person said at an earlier time.
  • has the structure reporting verb + that + statement.
  • changes the verb in the reported sentence to a "more past" tense when the speaker is reporting something from the past.
  • does not change the verb when what a person said is connected to the present.
  • use pronouns to refer to the original speaker.
  • uses the reporting verb "ask" to report a yes / no question: ask + person addressed + if + statement.
  • uses the reporting verb "ask" to report an information question: subject + asked + object + wh-word + statement.

Related Sections

Past Perfect