is Reported Speech, Third Part.
You will learn how to report questions, requests and commands; the
use of special reporting verbs for recommendations, offers
and refusals, and more...
questions are just a special case of reported statements. When
the reporting verb is in the past the one-tense back rule
applies in the same way. The difference is that we have to
change the word order because the reported clause is not a
question anymore. If the reported clause uses the auxiliary
verb do/did, these disappear. And you must use the
conjunction if ( = on the condition that; supposing
e.g. She asked, "Do you work on Saturdays?".
She asked me IF I WORKED on Saturdays. (We don't
say: She asked me do you work on Saturdays).
2. If the reported
clause has an inverted verb this inversion is reversed.
e.g. He asked, "Can I come?".
He asked me IF HE COULD COME.
e.g. Helen asked, "Can I make a phone call?".
Helen asked IF SHE COULD MAKE a phone call.
e.g. Jim asked, "Should I buy that book?".
Jim asked IF HE SHOULD BUY that book.
PLEASE, REMEMBER THIS: In
colloquial style you can use the conjunction if instead
of whether (pronounced as uéder and also
translated as "si" in Spanish), but in formal
English you must use whether: Jim asked WHETHER HE
SHOULD BUY that book (OR NOT).
3. If the direct
question includes a question word (i.e. how, when,
where, who, why, etc.) this question word
is used in the reported question. If it does not, we use if
e.g. He asked, "How old are you?".
He asked me how OLD I WAS.
e.g. He asked, "When is she leaving the office?".
He asked when SHE WAS LEAVING the office.
e.g. He asked, "Where can I leave my coat?".
He asked where HE COULD LEAVE his coat.
e.g. He asked, "Who is going to Buenos Aires?".
He asked who WAS GOING to Buenos Aires.
e.g. Julie asked, "Why are you in California?".
Julie asked why I WAS in California.
REPORTED REQUESTS AND COMMANDS
REQUEST: appeal, petition, asking (pedido,
solicitud, requerimiento, in Spanish)
COMMAND: order (orden, in Spanish)
In reported requests and commands we often use the verbs ASK
(for requests) and TELL (for commands). However, these verbs are
not used in the same way as in reported statements or reported
questions, and they are followed by an INFINITIVE STRUCTURE:
STANDARD USE: e.g. She asked, "Do you know
She asked me if I knew them.
REQUESTS: She said,
"Please, be quiet !!"
She asked me TO BE QUIET. (infinitive structure)
STANDARD USE: e.g. He said, "I will come
He told me he would come.
COMMANDS: He ordered,
"Sit down !!"
He told me TO SIT DOWN.
Other verbs that use this INFINITIVE STRUCTURE include:
give an advice
offer someone an invitation
tell someone to do something
cause someone to do something
give a recommendation
recall someone from memory
notify of danger or risk
recordar a alguien (que haga algo)
Verbs such as SUGGEST,
PROPOSE, RECOMMEND are used to make recommendations. If the
speaker includes himself/herself in the recommended
action, we use the -ING FORM (gerund) in the reported clause:
e.g. Ana suggested, "Why don't we go to the park".
Ana suggested going to the park. (Ana included herself
in the suggestion)
2. However, if the
speaker does not include himself/herself in the
suggestion, we use a "THAT" CLAUSE:
e.g. Ana suggested, "Why don't you go to the park".
Ana suggested that I should go to the park. (Ana didn't
include herself in the suggestion)
3. With these verbs we can
use the present subjunctive (e.g. "go") or should
(e.g.: "should go") in the reported clause:
e.g. Ana proposed that we go to the
park or Ana proposed
that we should go to the park
With the verbs OFFER and REFUSE we use the infinitive
structure but NO indirect object:
e.g. She said, "Shall I carry your bag, Tommy?".
She offered to carry Tommy's bag.
e.g. He said, "I won't come to the party !!".
He refused to come to the party.