Exploring the Types of Reported Speech: A Complete Guide

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Reported speech is an integral part of English grammar, understanding the nuances of reported speech will help increase language proficiency. In this blog article, you will explore the different types of reported speech based on the types of sentences in English grammar. You will also learn the different rules to be followed to convert different types of sentences from direct speech to indirect speech. You will also find exercises to reinforce your learning and master the art of converting speech from one speech to another.

MUST READ! Reported Speech: Definition, Rules, Usage with Examples, Tips, Exercises for Students

Four Types of Reported Speech 

Based on the kinds of sentences in English Grammar reported speech is also changed accordingly keeping in mind the four kinds of sentences. There are four types of reported speech. These include – Exclamatory, Interrogative, Imperative and Assertive/Declarative.

Change of Assertive Sentences in Reported Speech

The following rules must be kept in mind before changing the speech of an assertive sentence:

  • Removal of quotation marks and the sentence will end with a comma.
  • Reporting verbs are changed accordingly:
Direct Speech Indirect Speech
say say
says says
said said
said to told
say to tell
says to tells
  • Conjunction that is added to remove the quotation marks.

Also Read Tenses Rules: Charts, Examples, Types [PDF Available]

Examples of Change of Assertive Sentences in Reported Speech

Let us comprehend the few examples of Assertive Speech for the proper understanding of the concept.

Direct Speech Indirect Speech
He said, “Two and two make four. He said that two and two make four.
He said, “I like cupcakes.” He said that he liked cupcakes.
She said,” I am going to the party tomorrow”. She said that she was going to the party the next day.
She says,” She is going to the market.” She says that she is going to the market.
She said,” They have done their work”. She said that they had done their work.

Change of Interrogative Sentences in Reported Speech

The following rules must be kept in mind before changing the speech of an interrogative sentence:

  • Removal of quotation marks and use of question marks (? ) at the end of the sentence.
  • The Reporting verb changed to ask, inquire, question, or want to know.
  • The use of connectors such as if or whether to remove the quotation marks.
  • WHO words are not changed and no use of connectors before them.

Examples of Change of Interrogative Sentences in Reported Speech

Let us comprehend the few examples of Interrogative Speech for a proper understanding of the concept.

Direct Speech  Indirect Speech
He said to him,” Do you live in Chandigarh?” He asked him if he lived in Chandigarh.
She said to her mother “Are you going to school tomorrow?” She asked her mother if she was going to school the next day.
The professor said to me “ Did you come late today?” The professor asked me if I came late the same day.
My mother said to me,” What do you want?” My mother asked me what I wanted.
The teacher said to Ram,” Where are you going?” The teacher asked Ram where he was going.
She said to my sister,” Will you take tea?” She asked my sister if she would take tea.

Must Read: Subject-Verb Agreement: Definition, 12 Rules & Examples

Change of Exclamatory Sentences in Reported Speech

The following rules must be kept in mind before changing the speech of an interrogative sentence:

  • The interjections and commas are removed with the help of a connector(that).
  • The reported verb said changes according to the interjection such as exclaimed with joy, exclaimed with sorrow, exclaimed with wonder, exclaimed joyfully, or sorrowfully.
  • In interjection sentences if beginnings with how or what are removed using very or very great.
  • The wish sentences may change to might and remove the exclamation that connector is used.

Examples of Change of Exclamatory Sentences in Reported Speech

Let us comprehend the few examples of Exclamatory Sentences for a proper understanding of the concept.

Direct Speech  Indirect Speech
She said, “Hurray! I have won the contest” She exclaimed joyfully that she had won the contest.
He said, “Alas! My brother has left the world.” He exclaimed with sorrow that his brother had left the world.
He said, “What a beautiful house this is!” He exclaimed that that house was very beautiful.
He said, “How lucky I am!” He said that he was very lucky.
You said to her, “May you live long!” You wished to her that she might live long.

Change of Imperative Sentences in Reported Speech

The following rules must be kept in mind before changing the speech of an imperative sentence:

  • To change the imperative sentences from direct to indirect speech infinitive is used before the main verb.
  • The reported verb said is changed to ordered, requested, commanded, and advised.

Examples of Change of Imperative Sentences in Reported Speech

Let us comprehend the few examples of Imperative Sentences for a proper understanding of the concept.

Direct Speech Indirect Speech
He said to me,” Please help me” He requested me to help him.
The teacher said to the students,” Don’t roam here.” The teacher ordered the students not to roam there.
He said to his mother,” Please pass the salt” He requested his mother to pass the salt.
The wise man said to him,” Always speak the truth”. The wise man advised him to always speak the truth.
He said to his brother,” Close the window.” He ordered his brother to close the window.

Exercise On Kinds of Reported Speech

Change the following sentences to indirect speech:

  1. He said to him,” What is your name?”
  2. He said to her,” I ate mangoes”.
  3. The mother said to her son,” Put your clothes on the rack.”
  4. The mother said,” Hurrah! My son has won the trophy.”
  5. The old lady said to me,” May you live long!”

Answers

Check your answers with solved exercises to analyze the understanding of your concept.

1. He asked him what his name was.

2. He told her that he had eaten mangoes.

3. The mother instructed her son to put his clothes on the rack.

4. The mother exclaimed with joy that her son had won the trophy.

5. The old lady wished me a long life.

Must Read: Figures of Speech: Types, Usage & Examples [Download PDF]

FAQs

What is the difference between direct and indirect speech?

Direct speech is the actual words spoken by a person and is written in quotation marks, while indirect speech defines the meaning of the original statement without quoting the actual words of the speaker. Indirect speech involves changes in verb tense, pronouns, and other elements.

How many types of reported speech are there?

There are four types of reported speech based on the four kinds of sentences in English Grammar.
Statements 
Questions
Exclamations And Wishes
Commands and Requests

What are the four types of reported speech?

The four types of reported speech are Assertive/Declarative, Imperative, Interrogative and Exclamatory.

LEARN MORE ABOUT REPORTED SPEECH 
Direct and Indirect Speech Guide with Exercises How to Change Sentences into Indirect Speech
Examples of Direct and Indirect Speech Exercises Examples of Direct and Indirect Speech Interrogative Sentences
Direct and Indirect Speech Rules & Examples Types of Reported Speech
Reported Speech Exercises For Class 9 Reported Speech Interrogative: Rules, Examples & Exercise
Direct And Indirect Speech Questions Direct and Indirect Speech Exercises With Answers for Class 12

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