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In this blog we will discuss important topic of English Grammar i.e. Narration.


What is narration

It is the way of conveying one’s words to others.

Types

The words can be conveyed in two ways-

(1) Direct Speech

(2) Indirect Speech

(1) Direct Speech: The words of the speaker are kept as it is.

For example,

The boss said to the employee,” There are a lot of mistakes”.

The boss – Reporter

Said – Reporting verb

There are a lot of mistakes-Reported speech

The boss-Subject

The employee-Object

(2) Indirect Speech: The words of the speaker are changed in a simple form.

For example,

The boss told the employee that there were a lot of mistakes.

If we compare the above direct and indirect speech, we will observe various changes-

  1. Said to –Told
  2. Are-Were
  3. No inverted comma
  4. ‘That’ added

Changes in the sentence while the speech changes

  1. Reporting verb changes according to the reported speech.
  2. Inverted comma removes.
  3. Pronoun/Subject of the reported speech changes.
  4. The verb of the reported speech changes at times.
  5. Adverbs of the reported speech changes.

Now, let’s understand how the speech changes from direct to indirect.

Rules to change the speech

I.REPORTING VERB

  1. Says to-tells (if there is an object)
  2. Said to-told (if there is an object)
  3. Said to-asked /enquired/questioned (if the reported speech is interrogative)
  4. Said to-requested /suggested/advised/ordered/forbade /warned (if  the reported speech is imperative)
  5. Said to- wished/prayed/cursed/blessed (if the reported speech is optative)
  6. Said to –exclaimed with joy/sorrow/disgust/surprise (if the reported speech is exclamatory)

II. PRONOUN

To understand this, we must be aware of the cases:

SUBJECTIVEOBJECTIVEPOSSESSIVEREFLEXIVE
IMEMY, MINEMYSELF
WEUSOUR, OURSOURSELVES
YOUYOUYOUR, YOURSYOURSELF, YOURSELVES
HEHIMHISHIMSELF
SHEHERHER, HERSHERSELF
ITITITSITSELF
THEYTHEMTHEIRTHEMSELVES

Pronouns change according to a rule naming SON where

  • S – Subject
  • O- Object
  • N- No change

1. If the subject of the reported speech is the First Person (I, me, my, us, mine, myself, ourselves) it will change according to the Subject of the Reporting Verb.

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I love you”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he loved her.

Here, ‘I’ changes according to ‘Romeo’.

Note: The case will remain as it is i.e.

  • Subjective Case changes to Subjective case itself. 
  • Objective Case changes to the Objective case itself.
  • Possessive Case changes to Possessive case itself.

2. If the subject of the reported speech is the Second Person (you, your, yours), it will change according to the Object of the Reporting Verb.

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I love you”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he loved her.

Here, ‘you’ changes according to ‘Juliet’.

3. If the subject of the reported speech is the Third Person (all except the first and the second person), No Change will take place.

For example,

Direct Speech: She said, “He irritates her”.

Indirect Speech: She said that he irritated her.

Here, ‘he’ and ‘her’ remain as it is.

III. TENSE

If the reporting verb is in the Present or Future Tense, there will be No Change in the tense of the Reported Speech.

(1) Present Tense

Direct Speech:  Punam says, “I write a blog”.

Indirect Speech: Punam says that she writes a blog.

Here, both ‘write’ and ‘writes’ are in the present tense.

(2) Future Tense

Direct Speech: Punam will say, “I write a blog”.

Indirect Speech: Punam will say that she writes the blog.

Here, both ‘write’ and ‘writes’ are in the present tense.

(3) Past Tense

If the Reporting Verb is in the past tense, the following changes will take place:

1. Simple Present changes to Simple Past

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I love you”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he loved her.

2. Present Continuous changes to Past Continuous

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I am singing a song”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he was singing a song.

3. Present Perfect changes to Past Perfect

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I have written a letter”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he had written a letter.

4. Present Perfect Continuous changes to Past Perfect Continuous

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I have been waiting for you”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he had been waiting for her.

5. Simple Past changes to Past Perfect

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I sent a gift”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he had sent a gift.

6. Past Continuous changes to Past Perfect Continuous

For example,

Direct Speech: Romeo said to Juliet, “I was learning music”.

Indirect Speech: Romeo told Juliet that he had been learning music.

I. No change in tense

(1) Universal truth

A sentence has been given in Direct/Indirect speech. Out of the four alternatives suggested, select the same sentence in Indirect/Direct speech.

1. The teacher said to the children, “The Sun always sets in the west.” 

(A) The teacher told the children that the Sun always sets n the west.

(B) The teacher told that the Sun always sets in the west.

(C) The teacher asked the children if the Sun sets in the west.

(D) The teacher told the children that the Sun set in the west.

Solution:

  • Universal Truth is always written in the present tense no matter whatever be the tense of the Reporting Verb.
  • When both the Subject and the Object of the Reporting Verb is mentioned, ‘told’ is used.
  • Option A fulfils all the conditions and hence is correct.

Answer:  A

2. The teacher said to him, “Is not poverty a curse”? 

(A) The teacher asked him if poverty was not a curse.

(B) The teacher asked him is poverty not a curse.

(C) The teacher asked him was poverty not a curse.

(D) The teacher asked him whether poverty is not a curse.

Solution:

  • ‘Is not poverty a curse’ is a Universal Truth according to the teacher.
  • Hence, there won’t be any change in the tense of the Reported Speech.
  • For making an indirect speech for Interrogative Sentences, starting with Auxiliary Verb like ‘is’, ‘if’ or ‘Whether’ is used instead of the auxiliary verb.
  • Among the given options, option D holds the required conditions.

Answer: D

3. I said, “Water is essential for life”. 

(A) Water is essential for life was said by me.

(B) I exclaimed that water was essential for life.

(C) I said that water is essential for life.

(D) I told that water was essential for life.

Solution:

  • Again a case of Universal Truth is given.
  • Going through the basic rule in the above examples, option C would be appropriate.

Answer: C

(2) Proverb/Idiom

A sentence has been given in Direct/Indirect speech. Out of the four alternatives suggested, select the same sentence in Indirect/Direct speech.

1. He said, “Honesty is the best policy”. 

(A) He said that honesty has been the best policy.

(B) He said that honesty had been the best policy.

(C) He said that honesty was the best policy.

(D) He said that honesty is the best policy.

Solution:

  • Since ‘honesty is the best policy’ is a Proverb, there will be No Change either in the verb or tense of this proverb.
  • Among the given options, option D holds the required answer.

Answer: D

2.  The teacher said to his students, “Health is wealth, whatever you may say

(A) The teacher told his students that health was wealth, whatever they might say.

(B) The teacher exclaimed to his students that health is wealth whatever they might tell.

(C) The teacher assured his students that health was wealth whatever they might say.

(D) The teacher told his students that health is wealth whatever they might say.

Solution:

  • In the given sentence, only ‘health is wealth’ is a proverb. So, there won’t be any change here.
  • But, the rest part of the Reported Speech is a general statement, hence there will be changes according to the basic rule.
  • Since ‘you’ is the Second Person it will change according to the Object of the Reported Speech i.e. ‘students’.
  • Since the Reporting Verb i.e. ‘said’ is in the past tense, there will be a change in the tense of the part ‘whatever you may say’.
  • Considering the above conditions, option D will be the appropriate answer.

Answer: D

(3) Historical facts

A sentence has been given in Direct/Indirect speech. Out of the four alternatives suggested, select the same sentence in Indirect/Direct speech.

1. The teacher said to the students, “Alexander left war after the conquest of Kalinga”

(A) The teacher said the students that Alexander left war after the conquest of Kalinga.

(B) The teacher told the students that Alexander left war after the conquest of Kalinga.

(C) The teacher said the students that Alexander had left war after the conquest of Kalinga.

(D) The teacher told the students that Alexander had left war after the conquest of Kalinga.

Solution:

  • Since the Reported Speech is a Historical Fact, there won’t be any change in it.
  • ‘Said to’ will change into ‘told’ as there is an object (students) after the Reporting Verb (said).
  • Among the given options, option B will be appropriate.

Answer: B

2. She said to him, “Babur defeated Lodi in the first battle of Panipat”.

(A) She told him that Babur defeated Lodi in the first battle of Panipat.

(B) She said him that Babur defeated Lodi in the first battle of Panipat.

(C) She said to  him that Babur defeated Lodi in the first battle of Panipat.

(D) She told him that Babur had defeated Lodi in the first battle of Panipat.

Solution:

  • Again, a Historical Fact, so there will be No Change in the Reported Speech.
  • ‘Said to’ will change into ‘told’ as there is an Object (him) after the Reporting Verb (said).
  • Among the given options, option A will be appropriate.

Answer: A

II. No use of ‘that’

(1) Imperative sentence (order/request/advice/suggestion)

A sentence has been given in Direct/Indirect speech. Out of the four alternatives suggested, select the same sentence in Indirect/Direct speech.

1. The boss said to him, “Please tell me what the old man said today”. 

(A) The boss requested him to tell him what the old man had said that day.

(B) The boss requested him to tell him what the old man had said today.

(C) The boss requested him to tell him what the old man had said that day.

(D) The boss requested him to tell him what the old man said today.

Solution:

  • In imperative sentences ‘that’ is not used.
  • Instead, Advised/Suggested/Requested/Ordered etc is used according to the mood of the sentence.
  • ‘Said to’ will change into ‘requested’ and not ‘told’.
  • Today’ will change into ‘That Day’.
  • Considering the above conditions, option A is the appropriate answer.

Answer: A

(2) Interrogative sentence

A sentence has been given in Direct/Indirect speech. Out of the four alternatives suggested, select the same sentence in Indirect/Direct speech.

1. The teacher said, “Tell me students, what have you learnt from the lectures this week?” 

(A) The teacher asked the students what they learnt from the lectures that week.

(B) The teacher asked the students to tell him what they learnt from the lectures that week.

(C) The teacher wanted to know what the students learnt from the lectures that week.

(D) The teacher asked the students to tell him what they had learnt from the lectures that week.

Solution:

  • For interrogative sentences ‘Asked’ is used instead of ‘that’.
  • No use of ‘that’.
  • Since the Reported Speech is in the Present Perfect Tense, it will be changed into Past Perfect Tense as per the rules. As the Reporting Verb is in the past tense.
  • ‘Me’ will change according to the ‘teacher’ as the First-Person changes according to the Subject of the Reporting Verb.
  • ‘You’ will change according to the ‘students’ as the Second Person changes according to the Object (student) of the Reporting Verb.
  • Considering the above conditions, option D is the appropriate answer.

Answer: D

Before we begin to discuss the topic, I have something for you to read: (Just for fun)

An English professor wrote the words: “A woman without her man is nothing” and asked all the students to punctuate it correctly.

All of the male students wrote: “A woman, without her man, is nothing”.

All of the female students wrote: “A woman: without her, man is nothing”

Could you see how a change in the comma changed the tone of the entire sentence? This shows the power of punctuation. Some of you must have read this earlier but all I wanted through this was to make you understand that proper usage of English Grammar is vital.

What is Narration? It is a word comprising of ‘Narrate + tion’ where narrate means to describe something. Collectively, Narration is the act of telling a story or a happening, usually in a definite way.

Narration can be divided into two types:

1. Direct Speech: It repeats, or quotes, the exact words spoken.

2. Reported/Indirect Speech: We normally change the tense of the words spoken.

Let us understand with a simple example (Because examples are exciting, aren’t they?):

I was going to the market and met one of my friends Raghav there. He was in a hurry and said to me that: Hamid, I am safe and sound here. I went home and told my parents that “Raghav told me that he is safe and sound there”. Now, here is so many things for you to grasp. 

The direct speech in this example is: Raghav said to me, “I am safe and sound here” 

As you can see the sentence is in two different parts:

•    The first part is ‘Raghav said to me’ which is called as Reporting Verb.
•    The second part is ‘I am safe and sound here’ which is called as Reported Speech.

I know you must be thinking why ‘-ing’ in the verb part and not in the speech part. Don’t worry! I am here for these things only.

The first part is the Reporting verb because the incident is happening at present whereas the second part is a thing of past i.e. it has already happened. That is why it is said to be as Reported Speech. So, don’t confuse between the two.

The indirect speech is: Raghav told me that he is safe and sound there.

The changes in the sentence are:
1.    ‘Said to’ changed to ‘told’
2.    The conjunction ‘that’ is added as a connector in the sentence to join the reporting verb and reported speech.
3.    ‘I’ changed to ‘he’
4.    ‘Here’ changed to ‘there

On converting any sentence to indirect speech, there are three major changes in it:

1. Change of pronouns: 

PronounExampleComment
First person PronounI/weFirst person pronoun changes according to the subject.
Second person PronounYouSecond person pronoun changes according to the object
Third person PronounHe/She/It/They           No change in third person pronoun.

I know you could not understand this concept clearly. Let us see one example from each of the pronoun:         

First person pronounD.S: Ram said, “I want to see my new house”
I.S: Ram wanted to see his new house
The subject is Ram. So, ‘I’ changes to ‘his’ as first-person pronoun changes according to the subject.
Second person pronounD.S: He said to her, “You are kind”
I.S: He told her that she was cute
The subject is ‘He’ and the object is ‘Her’. Since second person pronoun changes according to the object. ‘You’ refers to the girl (object). So, it will change to ‘she’. 
Third person pronounD.S: The panel said, “He was not up to the mark as per our needs in the organization”
I.S: The panel said that he was not up to the mark as per their needs in the organization.
Since, third person pronoun does not change in indirect speech. So, ‘He’ remains as it is in the indirect speech also. 

2.  Change of tenses: I will give you a list depicting the change of tenses with one example each:

TenseTense changes toDirect Speech (D.S)Indirect Speech (I.S)
Simple PresentSimple PastPratik said to me, “I work in a Multi-national Company.”Pratik told me that he worked in a Multi-national Company.
Present continuousPast continuousPratik said to me, “I am eating a banana”Pratik told me that he was eating a banana.
Present perfectPast perfectPratik said to me, “I have completed my work.”Pratik told me that he had completed his work.
Present perfect continuousPast perfect continuousPratik said to me, “I have been going to this gym since 2007.”Pratik told me that he had been going to that gym since 2007.
TenseTense changes toDirect speech (D.S)Indirect speech (I.S)
Simple PastPast perfectPratik said to me, “I played cricket today”.Pratik told me that he had played cricket that day.
Past continuousPast perfect continuousPratik said to me, “I was preparing a meal”.Pratik told me that he had been preparing a meal.
Past perfectPast perfect (No change)Pratik said to me, “I had waited for him in the bank”.Pratik told me that he had waited for him in the bank.
Past perfect continuousPast perfect continuous (No change)Pratik said to me, “I had been helping the needy for two years.Pratik told me that he had been helping the needy for two years.

Future Tense: There is no change in the tense but the modals and certain changes in the future tense are as follows: 

Direct SpeechIndirect Speech
WillWould
CanCould
ShallWould/should
MayMight
MustHad to

3.  Change of time, place and adverbs:

Direct speechIndirect speech
NowThen
ThisThat
HereThere
AgoBefore
TodayThat day
TonightThat night
YesterdayThe previous day
Next day/week/month/yearThe following day/week/month/year
Last day/week/month/yearThe previous day/week/month/year

Note: One very important rule of narration is that there is no change of tense in the statements citing universal truth, daily habit, Idiom, phrase or a proverb.
That’s all from the learning part on basic of narration. Let us now solve some basic level questions:

Direction: Change the sentences given below into Indirect speech.

1.    They said, “We will go for a picnic next week”.

Answer: The given sentence is in future tense. We know that there will not be any change in the tense. So, rest of the changes are:

a.    The conjunction ‘that’ will be added as a connector in the sentence to join the reporting verb and reported speech.
b.    ‘Will’ changes to ‘would’ 
c.    ‘We’ changes to ‘they’
d.    ‘Next week’ changes to ‘the following week’.
 
So, the indirect speech will be: They said that they would go for a picnic the following week.

2.   She said to me, “I will be using the car next Friday”.

Answer: The given sentence is in the future continuous tense. We know that there will not be any change in the tense. So, rest of the changes are:

a.    ‘Said to’ will change to ‘told’
b.    The conjunction ‘that’ will be added as a connector in the sentence to join the reporting verb and reported speech.
c.    ‘I’ changes to ‘She’
d.    ‘Will’ changes to ‘would’ 
e.    ‘Next Friday’ changes to ‘the following Friday’.

Indirect speech: She told me that she would be using the car the following Friday.

All the changes that we made are completely under the rules that we studied earlier. I hope the concept is now clear to you all. Why not check then? 

Direction: Change the sentences given below into Indirect speech.

1.    Rakhi said, “I am reading a novel now”.
2.    We said to them, “It could be difficult to find our house”.
3.     I said, “She has to abide by the rules and regulations on COVID-19”
4.    The teacher said, “Honesty is the best policy”.
5.    Hari said to us, “I wake up early in the morning”.

Try solving them by yourself first and then look at the answers.

Answers:

1.    Rakhi told me that she was reading a novel then.
2.    We said to them that it could be difficult to find our house.
3.    I said that she had to abide by the rules and regulations on COVID-19.
4.    The Teacher said that Honesty is the best policy. (Universal Truth)
5.    Hari told us that he wakes up early in the morning.

Let us discuss each rule step by step and understand it in the most convenient way possible:

1. Universal truths, daily habits, Idioms, phrases or proverbs: Although we had discussed this point in the [previous blog but let us dig deeper into it.

There is NO change in the reporting speech part of sentences citing universal truths, Idioms, phrases or proverbs. And, there is NO change of tense in sentences citing daily habits.

(Mark the difference here: Rule of change for sentences citing daily habits is different from the other ones).

Let us see some examples to have a clear understanding:

    A. Neetu said to Mohit, “Where there is a will, there is a way”.
        This sentence comprises of a proverb. So, there will not be any change in the proverb part.
        Indirect Speech: “Neetu told Mohit where there is a will, there is a way”.

    B. Harish said to Mahima, “I wake up at 5 A.M every day”
        This sentence tells a daily habit. So, there won’t be any change of tense in it.
         Indirect speech: Harish told Mahima that he wakes up at 5 A.M. every day.

I hope you could find the difference between the two sentences here.

2.  Interrogative sentences:

2.1 Single interrogative sentences (Also known as Yes-No interrogative): Here, the conjunction “whether/ if” is used. Moreover, in these types of questions, we form the indirect speech as per the tone like questioned, suggested, ordered, advised, enquired, asked, etc.

         A.  Direct Speech: Rehan said to Mohan, “Are you interested in scuba diving?”

               Indirect Speech: Rehan asked Mohan whether he was interested in scuba diving.

         B.  D.S: Arpit said to me, “Can I call you later?”

               I.S: Arpit asked me if he could call me later.

         C.  D.S: I said, “Do you know this person?”

                I.S: I enquired whether he knew that person.

   2.2 Double interrogative sentences (Also known as Wh-interrogative): Let us understand this concept with some examples:

         A.  D.S: Keshav said to Ram, “What is your favourite sport?”

              I.S: Keshav asked Ram what his favourite sport was.

         B.  D.S: Raghav said to Pritam, “Where are you going?”

               I.S: Raghav questioned Pritam that where he was going.

         C. D.S: Yash asked Yashi, “Will you help me?”

               I.S: Yash asked Yashi if she would help him.

         That is how we answer double interrogative sentences.

        Important note: The indirect speech sentence in the example ‘C’ has its subject before the subordinate clause. This happens only in interrogative based sentences. So,  keep this rule in mind.

3. Modals: Sentences having modal verbs are followed by the first forms of their respective verbs (V1) in indirect speech. 

     A.  D.S: Binay said to me, “You can take my tiffin today”

         I.S: Binay told me that I could take his tiffin that day. 

Explanation: The modal verb in this sentence is ‘can’ that changes to ‘could’. As we know, the modal verb is followed by a v1 form. So, ‘take’ is the correct verb for this sentence.

     B.  D.S: The teacher said to Ram, “You must complete your homework today”.

         I.S: The teacher ordered Ram that he had to complete his homework that day.

Explanation: The modal verb in this sentence is ‘must’ that changes to ‘had to’. As we know, the modal verb is followed by a v1 form. So, ‘complete’ is the correct verb for this sentence.

A sentence has been given in Direct/Indirect speech. Out of the four alternatives suggested, select the same sentence in Indirect/Direct speech.

1. Robin said to Peg,” Are you listening? Don’t be thick.” 

(A) Robin asked Peg if he was listening and advised him not to be thick.

(B) Robin told Peg to listen to him and not to be thick.

(C) Peg was asked to listen to Robin and not to be thick.

(D) Robin invited Peg to listen and not to be thick.

Solution:

  •  “Are you listening?” is an Interrogative sentence.
  • So ‘said to’ should be changed in ‘asked’.
  • If we go through the options, only A fulfils this condition.
  • Still, let’s solve it completely.
  • ‘Don’t’ changes in ‘not to’.
  • “Don’t be thick” seems like either order or advice.
  • Since none of the options contain ‘ordered’, it is in the sense of advice.
  • For ‘advice’, we use ‘advised’ and hence option A will be correct.

Answer: A

2. He said,” Do as you wish, but don’t come and ask me for help if you get into difficulties.” 

(A) He told me to do as he wished or he wouldn’t come and help me if you get into difficulties.

(B) He told me to do as I wished, but not to go and ask him for help if I got into difficulties.

(C) He ordered me to do as I wished, but not to go and ask him for help if I got into difficulties.

(D) He told me that unless I did as I wished he would not come and help me if I got into difficulties.

Solution:

  • ‘You’ should be changed according to the object of the Reporting Verb as the Second Person changes according to the Object of the Reporting Verb.
  • When the object of the Reporting Verb is not mentioned, it is considered ‘me’.
  • Since the Subjective Case of ‘me’ is ‘I’, ‘you’ will be changed into ‘I’.
  • The statements are not order but a general conversation so ‘told’ is appropriate not ‘ordered’.
  • Option B fulfils the above arguments.

Answer: B

3. Rakesh says,” Can you prepare a cup of tea for me, Sunita?”

(A) Rakesh tells Sunita to prepare a cup of tea for him.

(B) Rakesh tells Sunita if he could prepare a cup of tea for him.

(C) Rakesh asked Sunita if she can prepare a cup of tea for him.

(D) Rakesh asks Sunita if she can prepare a cup of tea for him.

Solution:

  • First of all, let’s understand what ‘Sunita’ is.
  • ‘Sunita’ is the object of the Reporting Verb ‘says’.
  • Since Reporting verb is in the present tense, the Reported Speech will also be in the present tense.
  • Moreover, the Reported Speech is interrogative, ‘asked’ will be appropriate.
  • When we change the speech, interrogative sentence changes into assertive.
  • So, the question mark will be replaced with a full stop.
  • Option D fulfils all the conditions and hence is correct.

Answer: D

4. The teacher said to the children,” The Sun always sets in the west.”

(A) The teacher told the children that the Sun always sets n the west.

(B) The teacher told that the Sun always sets in the west.

(C) The teacher asked the children if the Sun sets in the west.

(D) The teacher told the children that the Sun set in the west.

Solution:

  • Universal Truth is always written in the present tense no matter whatever be the tense of the Reporting Verb.
  • When both the Subject and the Object of the Reporting Verb is mentioned, ‘told’ is used.
  • Option A fulfils all the conditions and hence is correct.

Answer:  A

5. He said,” Let it rain ever so hard, I shall go”. 

(A) He said that he would go however hard it might rain.

(B) He said that he would go ever if it rains very hard.

(C) He suggested that he should go, let it rain very hard.

(D) He was determined to go even if it rained so hard.

Solution:

  • In Indirect Speech, we change the sentence into a simpler one.
  • Options C and D are not simpler sentences as there is the usage of ‘let’ in both these sentences.
  • Moreover, since Reporting Verb i.e. ‘said’ is in the past tense, the Reported Speech will also be in the same tense.
  • Among options A and B, option A is in the past tense and hence is correct.

Answer: A

6. He glanced at his watch,” And by the way, I must be off.”

(A) He glanced at his watch and remarked that it was rather late and that he must go.

(B) He glanced at his watch and quickly went away saying that he must go.

(C) He glanced at his watch and remarked that he must leave at once.

(D) He glanced at his watch and hurried away.

Solution:

  • In option A, there are various words which are not mentioned in the question, so it must be eliminated.
  • There are two actions in the question i.e. ‘glanced’ and ‘remarked’ which are mentioned in option C and hence it must be the appropriate option.

Answer: C

7. He asks which chair he is to sit on. 

(A) He said,” Which chair am I to sit on?”

(B) He asked,” Which chair he is to sit on?”

(C) “Which chair am I to sit on?” asks he.

(D) He said,” Which chair should I sit on?”

Solution:

  • Since the question is in the present tense, the option will also be in the present tense.
  • Among the options, only option C is in the present tense and hence is the correct answer.

Answer: C

8. The guide suggested,” Let’s rest here for a while.” 

(A) The guide suggested that we should rest there for a while.

(B) The guide suggested that we rest there.

(C) The guide suggested we should rest for a while.

(D) The guide suggested resting for a while there.

Solution:

  • For suggestion, we use ‘should’ in the Indirect Speech.
  • Among the options, options A and C contain ‘should’.
  • Moreover, ‘here’ changes into ‘there’.
  • Among options A and C, only option A contains ‘there’ and hence is the answer.

Answer: A

9. “Good bye! Dear friend,” said the patriot, “we will meet again.”

(A) The patriot said good-bye to his dear friend and said that they will meet again.

(B) The patriot bade his friend good bye and said that they must meet again.

(C) Bidding his dear friend good-bye, the patriot said that they would meet again.

(D) The patriot said good-bye to his friend and said that they are sure to meet again.

Solution:

  • While changing into Indirect Speech, ‘will’ changes to ‘would’.
  • Among the given options, only option C contains ‘would’ and hence is the correct answer.

Answer: C

Let us discuss each rule step by step and understand it in the most convenient way possible:

1. Universal truths, daily habits, Idioms, phrases or proverbs: Although we had discussed this point in the [previous blog but let us dig deeper into it.

There is NO change in the reporting speech part of sentences citing universal truths, Idioms, phrases or proverbs.
And, there is NO change of tense in sentences citing daily habits.

(Mark the difference here: Rule of change for sentences citing daily habits is different from the other ones).

Let us see some examples to have a clear understanding:

    A. Neetu said to Mohit, “Where there is a will, there is a way”.
        This sentence comprises of a proverb. So, there will not be any change in the proverb part.
        Indirect Speech: “Neetu told Mohit where there is a will, there is a way”.

    B. Harish said to Mahima, “I wake up at 5 A.M every day”
        This sentence tells a daily habit. So, there won’t be any change of tense in it.
         Indirect speech: Harish told Mahima that he wakes up at 5 A.M. every day.

I hope you could find the difference between the two sentences here.

2.  Interrogative sentences:

2.1 Single interrogative sentences (Also known as Yes-No interrogative): Here, the conjunction “whether/ if” is used. Moreover, in these types of questions, we form the indirect speech as per the tone like questioned, suggested, ordered, advised, enquired, asked, etc.

         A.  Direct Speech: Rehan said to Mohan, “Are you interested in scuba diving?”

               Indirect Speech: Rehan asked Mohan whether he was interested in scuba diving.

         B.  D.S: Arpit said to me, “Can I call you later?”

               I.S: Arpit asked me if he could call me later.

         C.  D.S: I said, “Do you know this person?”

                I.S: I enquired whether he knew that person.

   2.2 Double interrogative sentences (Also known as Wh-interrogative): Let us understand this concept with some examples:

         A.  D.S: Keshav said to Ram, “What is your favourite sport?”

              I.S: Keshav asked Ram what his favourite sport was.

         B.  D.S: Raghav said to Pritam, “Where are you going?”

               I.S: Raghav questioned Pritam that where he was going.

         C. D.S: Yash asked Yashi, “Will you help me?”

               I.S: Yash asked Yashi if she would help him.

         That is how we answer double interrogative sentences.

        Important note: The indirect speech sentence in the example ‘C’ has its subject before the subordinate clause. This happens only in interrogative based sentences. So, keep this rule in mind.

3. Modals: Sentences having modal verbs are followed by the first forms of their respective verbs (V1) in indirect speech. 

     A.  D.S: Binay said to me, “You can take my tiffin today”

         I.S: Binay told me that I could take his tiffin that day. 

Explanation: The modal verb in this sentence is ‘can’ that changes to ‘could’. As we know, the modal verb is followed by a v1 form. So, ‘take’ is the correct verb for this sentence.

     B.  D.S: The teacher said to Ram, “You must complete your homework today”.

         I.S: The teacher ordered Ram that he had to complete his homework that day.

Explanation: The modal verb in this sentence is ‘must’ that changes to ‘had to’. As we know, the modal verb is followed by a v1 form. So, ‘complete’ is the correct verb for this sentence.

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