- Direct speech is used to give a speaker’s exact words. It is also referred to as direct quotation.
- Direct speech is always enclosed within quotation marks.
Hemedi announced, “My aunt works in a biscuit factory. ”
“Creating jobs will be my first priority”, the governor said.
- A comma always separates the quoted words from the speaker’s name, whether the name comes before or after the quotation
- Jim asked, “Who are you voting for?”
- “I don’t know yet,” answered Carol.
- A direct quotation always begins with a capital letter
- Senator Karabba said, “You must believe in the new constitution."
- When a direct quotation is divided by speech tags, the second part of the quotation must begin with a small letter.
- “Register to vote,” said the senator, "before the end of the day”.
- If the second part of the quotation is a complete sentence, the first word of this sentence is capitalized.
- “I did register,” said Carol. “It took only a few minutes”
- Commas and full stops are placed inside quotation marks
- “Last night,” said Joyce, "I listened to a debate.”
- Quotation marks and exclamation marks are placed inside a quotation mark if they belong to the quotation. If they do not, they are placed outside the quotation.
- Joyce asked, “Whom are you voting for?"
- Did Carol say, “I don’t know yet’?
- I can’t believe that she said, “I don’t know yet"!
- Speech tags may appear before, in the middle or at the direct speech.
- He said, “You know quite well that you have to vote”
- “You know quite well, he said, “that you have to vote”.
- “You know quite well that you have to vote,” he said.
Rewrite the following sentences correctly in direct speech. Ensure you puntuiate them accordingly.
- John said there was a terrible accident in Nairobi.
- Petro added it happened in Umoja Estate.
- it involved a train and a bus added John
- sarah asked did anyone die
- No one died, but the railway line was destroyed answered Peter
- Over the months said John the railway line has been rebuilt
- How lucky that no one died exclaimed sarah
- I think they shoul put a railway-crossing sigh board
Petro said it would help bus drivers a lot
- Or they shoul put bumps on both sides of the railway line to slow down the buses John suggested
- Who knows what might happen next wondered Sarah
- Indirect speech is used to refer to a person’s words without quoting him or her exactly. It is also referred to as indirect quotation or reported speech. The original spoken words are not repeated.
- The exact meaning is given without repeating the speaker’s words.
Direct speech: The governor said, “Creating new jobs will be my first priority.”
Indirect speech: The governor said that creating new jobs would be his first priority.
- Several changes do occur when changing a sentence from direct to indirect speech
- Quotation marks
- Quotation marks are left out when writing a sentence in direct speech.
Direct: Hemedi announced, “My aunt works in a biscuit factory.”
Indirect: Hemedi announced that his aunt worked in a biscuit factory.
- Tense - The tense of a verb in the direct sentence will change in indirect speech
- Simple present changes to past simple
Direct: John said, “She goes to school early.”
Indirect: John said that she went to school early.
- Simple past changes to past perfect
Direct: John said, “She went to school early”
Indirect: John said that she had gone to school early.
- Present progressive changes to past progressive
Direct: “The baby is eating a banana,” the nurse said.
Indirect: The nurse said that the baby was eating a banana.
- Present perfect changes to past perfect
Direct: “South Sudan has become a republic,” the new president declared.
Indirect: The new president declared that South Sudan had become a republic
- Past progressive changes to past perfect progressive
Direct: “ I was dreaming when the fire started,” the boy said.
Indirect: The boy said the he had been dreaming when the fire started.
- Future simple changes to modal
Direct: “I will visit you tomorrow,” my desk mate said.
Indirect: My desk mate said the he would visit me the following day.
- Simple present changes to past simple
- May changes to might
Direct: : I may also visit you too,” I replied.
Indirect: I replied that I might also visit him too.
- Sometimes the verb in indirect speech does not change tense. This occurs in sentences that are universal truths
Direct: Our Geography teacher said “The earth rotates round the sun.”
Indirect: Our Geography teacher said that the earth rotates round the sun
- Words referring to place also change
Direct: “I live here,” retorted the old man.
Indirect: The old man retorted that he lived there
Direct: “This place stinks,” noted the boy.
Indirect: The boy noted that that place stunk.
- Words referring to time also change
Direct: “I will visit you tomorrow,” he shouted.
Indirect: He shouted that he would visit me the following/next day
Direct : “ He died last year,” the policeman reported.
Indirect: The policeman reported that he had dies the previous year/ the year before.
- Demonstrative pronouns also change:
Direct: “This book is mine,” Jane claimed.
Indirect: Jane claimed that that book was hers.
Direct: “These are hard times,” observed the president.
Indirect: The president observed that those were hard times.
- Pronouns also change when rewriting a sentence from direct to indirect speech.
Direct: “My car is better than yours,” the teacher bragged.
Indirect: The teacher bragged that his/her car was better that his/hers/theirs.
- Quotation marks
Change the following sentences from Direct to Indirect speech.
- “Did you see the fire at the West gate Mall?” asked Joel.
- Njagi said,” Ten fire-engines arrived in fifteen minutes.”
- Patty exclaimed, “It destroyed an entire block of building!”
- “One fire fighter was slightly injured,” said Joel.
- Njagi said, “Several people working in the building escaped unhurt.”
- “Tell me what will happen to them,” said Patty.
- “Other people are giving them food and clothes,” replied Joel.
- Njagi added,” They are resting in the school for now.”
- “These terrorists will finish us!” exclaimed Patty.
- “Don’t worry,” Joels aid “They will be apprehended tomorrow”.
Download Direct and Indirect Speech - English Grammar Notes.
Tap Here to Download for 50/-
Get on WhatsApp for 50/-
- ✔ To read offline at any time.
- ✔ To Print at your convenience
- ✔ Share Easily with Friends / Students
Join our whatsapp group for latest updates