It will be noticed that in Direct Speech, we use inverted commas to mark off the exact
words of the speaker. In Indirect Speech we do not.
It will be further noticed that in changing the above Direct Speech into Indirect certain
changes have been made.
i) We have used the conjunction ‘that’ before the Indirect statement.
ii) The pronoun ‘I’ is changed to ‘he’. (The Pronoun is changed in Person.)
iii) The verb ‘am’ is changed to ‘was’. (Present Tense is changed to Past.)
iv) The adverb ‘now’ is changed to ‘then’.
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.
a) A simple present becomes a simple past.
Direct: He said, “I am unwell.”
Indirect: He said (that) he was unwell.b) A present continuous becomes a past continuous.
Direct: He said, “My master is writing letters.”
Indirect: He said (that) his master was writing letters,
c) A present perfect becomes a past perfect.
Direct: He said, “I have passed the examination.”
Indirect: He said (that) he had passed the examination.
Note: The ‘shall’ of the Future Tense is changed into should. The ‘will’ of the Future
Tense is changed into would or should.