Narration (Part -2) - English Grammar Teaching Notes | EduRev

English Grammar

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Teaching : Narration (Part -2) - English Grammar Teaching Notes | EduRev

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Change of Persons

First Person

In the Indirect Narration of a Reported Speech the pronoun of the first person follows the person of the subject of the Reporting Verb.

As,

Direct : I said to you, "I like the book".

Indirect : I told you that I liked the book.

Direct : You said to me, "I also like the book".

Indirect : You told me that you also liked the book.

Direct : He said to me, "I too like the book".

Indirect : He told me that he too liked the book.

Second Person

In the Indirect Narration of a Reported Speech, the pronoun of the second person follows the person of the Reporting Verb.
As,

Direct : I said to you, "You will pass".

Indirect : I told you that you would pass.

Direct : You said to me, "You will fail".

Indirect : You told me that I would fail.

Direct : You said to me, "You may pass".

Indirect : You told me that I might pass.

Direct : He said to me, "You need not worry".

Indirect : He told me that I need not worry.

Third Person

In the Indirect Narration of a Reported Speech, a pronoun of the third person remains the same because, as a pronoun, it stands for a noun, and all nouns are in the Third person.

As,

Direct : I said to you, "He will pass".

Indirect : I told you that he would pass.

Direct : You said to me, "He will pass".

Indirect : You told me that he would pass.

Direct : Leela said to me, "he will pass."

Indirect : Leela told me that he would pass.

Rules for Changing Direct Speech into Indirect

When the reporting or principal verb is in the Past Tense, all Present Tenses of the Direct are changed into the corresponding Past Tenses.

As,

(a) A simple present become a simple past.

Direct : The teacher said, "You are wrong".

Indirect : The teacher said that I was wrong.

(b) A present continuous becomes a past continuous.

Direct : He said, "Seema is listening to music".

Indirect : He said that Seema was listening to music.

(c) A present perfect becomes a past perfect.

Direct : He said, "I have done my work".

Indirect : He said that he had done his work.

Note :  The shall of the Future Tense is changed into should.

The will of the Future Tense is changed into would or should.

(d) A simple past in the Direct becomes the past perfect in the Indirect.

Direct : He said, "The patient died in the night."

Indirect : He said that the patient had died in the night.

(a) Statements

In the Indirect form a Statement or Assertive sentence, the Reporting Verb of saying followed by an object is replaced by tell or some such verb followed by that. But the Reporting Verb is not changed if it is not followed by an object to a preposition.

Direct : The teacher said to me, "You are wrong".

Indirect : The teacher told me that I was wrong.

Direct : I said to my brother, "I shall go but you will stay".

Indirect : I told my brother that I should go but he would stay.

Direct : "I came home last night", said he.

Indirect : He said that he had come home the previous night.

(b) Questions

In the Indirect form of Questions or Interrogative sentences, the Reporting Verb of saying is replaced by such verbs as asked, inquired, etc.

As,

Direct : He said to me, "What are you doing here?"

Indirect : He asked me what I was doing there.

Direct : The king said to his ministers, "What will you do if you are suddenly attacked by a strong enemy?"

Indirect : The king asked his ministers what they would do if they were suddenly attacked by a strong enemy.

Direct : "Where do you live?" asked the stranger.

Indirect  : The stranger inquired where I lived.

In the Indirect form of Questions, the conjunctions if or whether is used only in cases where the question may have yes or no for its answer.

As,

Direct : I said to him, "Will you follow me?"

Indirect : I asked him if he would follow me.

Direct : John inquired of me, "Did you run away?"

Indirect : John inquired of me whether I had run away.

Direct : He said to us, "Are you coming to the meeting today?"

Indirect : He asked us if we were going to the meeting that day.

(c) Desires

In the Indirect form of Desires or Imperatives sentences, the Reporting Verb of saying must be substituted by some other suitable verb implying a request, an order, an advice, a command or a prayer as the case may be and the imperative mood must be changed into the infinitive.

As,

Direct : "Hurry up," he said to the servant, "Do not waste time."

Indirect : He ordered the servant to hurry up and not to waste time.

Direct : He said, "Let the boy do whatever he likes."

Indirect : He suggested that the boy might be allowed to do whatever he liked.

Direct : The speaker said to his audience, "Friends, consider the matter well."

Indirect : Addressing the audience as friends, the speaker advised them to consider the matter well.

Direct : My friend said to me, "Please lend me your book."

Indirect : My friend requested me to lead him my book.

Direct : Beena said to Meena, "Go away".

Indirect : Beena ordered Meena to go away.

Direct : "Call the witness first," said the judge.

Indirect : The judge commanded them to call the witness first.

Direct : She said, "Be quiet and have patience."

Indirect : She urged them to be quiet and have patience.

(d) Wishes

In Optative sentences (i.e., if the Reported speech is a wish), the Reporting Verb is changed into wish or pray to denote approximately the feeling or idea expressed in the speech.

Direct : The old man said to me, "May you live long".

Indirect : The old man wished that I might live long.

Direct : "God save my father".

Indirect : I pray that God may save my father.

Direct : He said, "If I am the President".

Indirect : He wished (that) if he was the President.

(e) Exclamations

In Exclamatory sentences, the Reporting Verb of saying must be replaced by some such suitable verb as exclaim or cryout, call or call to.

As,

Direct : "Ah me!" exclaimed the mother, "What a rash and bloody deed you have done!"

Indirect : The mother sorrowfully exclaimed or exclaimed with sorrow that he had done a very rash and bloody deed.

Direct : The man said, "Alas! what a fool I have been".

Indirect : The man confessed with sorrow that he had been a great fool.

Direct : "What losses have I sustained," cried the man, "What suffering have endured!"

Indirect : The man cried out that he had sustained great losses and had endured great sufferings.

Direct : The master said, "Bravo! you have done well".

Indirect : The master applauded him saying that he had done well.

Direct : Rana said, "Alas! I am undone".

Indirect : Rana exclaimed sadly that he was undone.

In the Indirect form of Exclamatory sentences, introduced by who, how or what denoting excess or absence, these words are replaced by none, great, very, much, greatly etc.

As,

Direct : Ram said, "What a fine picture it is!"

Indirect : Ram said that it was a very fine picture.

Direct : They said to me, "How obliged we are to you".

Indirect : They said to me that they were greatly obliged to me.

Again, the Reporting Verb may sometimes be changed for the sake of idiom.

Direct : Tom said to me, "You are a coward".

Indirect : Tom called me a coward.

Direct : Dick said, "Let us drop the matter".

Indirect : Dick proposed to drop the matter.

Direct : Harry said, "Let the man go".

Indirect : Harry suggested that the man might be allowed to go.

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