Narration change has its own set of grammatical rules. So learning the rules are very important to learn narration change. Today we are going to study the rules of changing Direct speech to Indirect speech. 

Rule 1

Punctuation marks such as comma, inverted commas that are used in Direct speech should be omitted in Indirect speech. e.g.

  • Direct: Rabi said to Tanu, “we should go home early.”
  • Indirect: Rabi said to Tanu that they should go home early.
Rule 2

Comma in Direct speech is replaced in Indirect speech with a conjunction. e.g.

  • Direct: I said to him, “can I go to sleep?”
  • Indirect:  I asked him if I could go to sleep.

Here ‘if’ is the conjunction.

Rule 3

Tense of reported clause in Direct speech is changed in Indirect speech. Tense only changes when the reporting verb is in past tense. If the reporting verb is in present or future tense, the tense of the reported clause cannot be changed.

  • Direct: Mahu said, “I am a teacher.”
  • Indirect:  Mahu said that she was a teacher. 

Here the reporting verb (said) is in past tense. Therefore the tense of the reported clause is changed.

  1. Direct: Mahu said, “I am a teacher.”
  2. Indirect:  Mahu said that she was a teacher. 

Here the reporting verb (says) is in present tense. So the tense of reported clause is not changed.

Rule 4

Pronouns, time, place of Direct speech should be changed accordingly in Indirect speech.

  • Direct: The man said, “I am going to buy a car today.”
  • Indirect:  The man said that he was going to buy a car that day.

Here the pronoun ‘I’ is changed to ‘he’ in Indirect speech and ‘today’ changed to ‘that day’. 

  • Direct:  The girl said, “I am here.”
  • Indirect: The girl said that she was there. 

‘Here’ in the Direct speech is changed to ‘there’ in Indirect speech.