Direct and Indirect Speech
Direct Speech is the exact words spoken by someone. It is enclosed within quotation marks.
The ship is sinking,” said the captain
Indirect Speech is when we report what someone else has said.
The captain said that the ship was sinking.
Rules of Direct Speech
- Since direct speech quotes someone’s exact spoken words, it is enclosed in quotation marks from both sides to separate it from the rest of the text.
- The first Word of the quotation is capitalized in each new, quote, unless a single quote is divided into two parts, in which case, the second part of the same quotation begins with a small letter. However, it should be noted that the second part of the same quotation in this case will still be enclosed within quotation marks from both ends.
E.g: “This passage,” our teacher said, “has been taken from Tom Sawyer.”
- All punctuation marks (full stop, comma, exclamation mark, question mark, etc.) come at the end of the quotation, before the closing quotation mark.
E.g: “Is this my plate?” asked Bob.
- If the speaker is mentioned before the direct speech, then a comma is placed before the opening quotation mark. If the speaker is mentioned after the direct speech, then the comma is placed at the end of the quotation before the closing quotation mark.
E.g: Simon said, I would like to visit the museum on Tuesday.”
” I would like to visit the museum on Tuesday,” said Simon.
- If a quotation is a question, then it ends with a question mark and if it is an exclamation, then it ends with an exclamation mark. However, it should be noted that if a quotation ends with a full stop, an exclamation mark or a question mark, then an additional comma is not required after it.
E.g:“I want to see him now!” shouted John.
- Every time a new speaker speaks, their quotation is started from a new line or paragraph.
E.g: “I think it will rain tonight,” said Jim.
“I don’t think so,” replied Sam.
Rules of Indirect Speech
- Since indirect speech reports what someone else has said, it does not use quotation marks.
- Some pronouns change in indirect speech.
|you||becomes||me / us|
|me||becomes||him / her|
- Some auxiliary verbs change to the simple past tense in indirect speech, unless they are already in simple past tense in direct speech, in which case they remain the same.
|am / is||becomes||was|
|has / have||becomes||had|
- Some demonstrative pronouns and time markers change in indirect speech.
- All verbs change to the past participle form in indirect speech.
1)Direct speech: Maria said, “I live in Canada.”
Indirect speech: Maria said (or told me) that she lived in Canada.
2)Direct speech: “Sara has made soup,” said
Indirect speech: Jill said that Sara had made soup.
3)Direct speech: “Gina, watch out for the bird!” exclaimed
Indirect speech: Peter warned Gina to watch out for the bird.
4)Direct speech: “Is your father home?” asked Dr. Phil.
Indirect speech: Dr. Phil asked if my father was home.
5)Direct speech: “This summer” remarked Josh, “is warmer than the last.”
Indirect speech: Josh said that that summer was warmer than the last.
6)Direct speech: Kate said, “We are sleeping ” .
Indirect speech: Kate said that they were sleeping upstairs.
7)Direct speech: “Victoria will drop you,” said Barbra.
Indirect speech: Barbra said that Victoria would drop me.
8)Direct Speech: “Our son doesn’t work in the Navy,” said Brown.
Indirect Speech: Mrs. Brown said that their son didn’t work in the Navy.
9)Direct Speech: Tony said, “We have eaten the mangoes. ”
Indirect Speech: Tony said that they had eaten the mangoes.
10)Direct Speech: “The plants look beautiful,” said Mona, “do you water them every day?”
Indirect Speech: Mona said that the plants looked beautiful and asked if I watered them every day.