- For Teachers
1. Direct = Alex said, “Don’t lose hope when a doctor says survival is impossible.”
2. Indirect = Alex said not to lose hope when a doctor says survival is impossible.
3. Indirect = Alex said not to lose hope when a doctor said survival was impossible.
2 is correct or 3 or both?
Pope of the Dictionary.com Forum
2 and 3 are both good. I find 2 a bit strange, as, 'when a doctor says survival is impossible.', through its use of the Present Tense implies that this is something which occurs regularly. Probably, for any given person at least, this situation will not occur more than once, although it is conceiveable.
If the doc is right, you will definitely only hear this once!!
3. also implies that the lucky person survived. 'survival was impossible', said the doc, and yet, here you are! Alex was right.
4. Indirect = Alex said not to lose hope when a doctor said that survival is impossible.
Doc may err!
I find "Alex said not to lose hope..." ungrammatical.
I think it should be "Alex said that I/we/he/she etc shouldn't/mustn't lose hope..." or "Alex told me/us/him/her etc not to lose hope..."
I'd like to take back what I said in #4.
I've just found "say to do something" is OK.
say - Definition from Longman English Dictionary Online
I'm really sorry. I didn't know "say to do something = tell somebody to do something" is possible.
(Edit) Please check this post, Odessa Dawn.
I found a note in my book with some examples, I think according to that note, using (said-was) in post #1 sentence #3 can be correct.
This is the note:
When a reporting verb is in the simple past tense, backshifting is optional when:
The direct speech refers to something that’s still true or the direct speech refers to a scientific or general truth.
Look at the examples which look like to my sentence #3 in Post #1:
Direct = He found, “the Earth is the fifth largest planet in the solar system.”
Indirect = He noted that the Earth is the fifth largest planet in the solar system.
Indirect = He noted that the Earth was the fifth largest planet in the solar system.
So according to this, in post #1 sentence #3, using both (said-was) or (says-is) is correct.
I also took a picture of my book page. If you click here you can see it.
Aren't I right?
If I have made any mistakes, please tell me about them. I need to improve my English anyway and I hope you'll help me.