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Complete Lessons in Order:

1
Questions with Did (past tense)
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
The Future Perfect Tense
26
The Eight Parts of Speech
27
English Verb Tenses
28
Irregular Verbs: Be / Do / Have
R
R
Yellow Level Review, Part 2

Past Participles

 

 

 

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 Lesson Sixteen

Direct and Indirect Quotations

A "quotation" is the exact word or words that a person speaks. It's good to understand the difference between a direct quotation, the words you hear from someone speaking, and an indirect quotation, which are the words that someone else uses to describe another speaker. Confused? When you're confused it helps to look at an example.

 

Direct Quotation
"I need to go to the store," said my wife.

 

Indirect Quotation

My wife said that she needed to go to the store.

 

Notice that "said" is in the past tense, so the verb "need" also becomes past tense.

There's something called the "sequence of tenses" which is useful to look at now:

 

The Sequence of Tenses

         Direct Speech arrow Indirect Speech

Present arrow Past

Present Continuous arrow Past Continuous

                    Past arrow Past Perfect   

Present Perfect arrow Past Perfect

          will arrow would

        can arrow could

        mayarrow might

 

There are others that can be added, but this is a good start in learning that tenses change their form when using indirect speech. See the examples below.

 

examples

beekeeper

"I am a beekeeper."

What did he say?

He said he was a beekeeper.

boy reading

"I'm reading a book."

What did he say?

He said that he was reading a book.

spider

"I was afraid of spiders when I was a little girl."

What did she say?

She said she had been afraid of spiders when she was a little girl.

man fishing

"I have been in this same spot for an hour and I haven't caught a thing."

He said that he'd been in that same spot for an hour and he hadn't caught anything.

(he'd been = had been)

making breakfast

"We enjoy making breakfast together."

They said that they enjoyed making breakfast together.

helping woman

"I'll help you pick them up."

He said he would help her pick up the apples.

eating

"He can eat an entire watermelon," his wife said.

His wife said that he could eat an entire watermelon.

radio

"This radio may be over 70 years old," said the owner of the antique shop.

The owner of the antique shop said that the radio might be over 70 years old.

This is an important thing to learn! Watch this video:

 

Here's a good website for learning about indirect quotations.

 

Next: Lesson 17

 

 

 

 

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