Results 1 to 3 of 3
  1. #1
    njanja is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    97
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Are these sentences correct?

    1 The last time i saw them they told me about a guy they had met two years before.
    2 The last time i saw them they told me about a guy they met two years ago.

    3 They said ( told me) that they had met him two years before.
    4 They said (told me) that they met him two years ago.


    Is it always necessary to change tenses in reported speech?

  2. #2
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    2,585
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Are these sentences correct?

    Hello Njanja

    Those sentences seem fine to me. Probably the use of the simple past would be more usual in American English than British English.

    The tense in reported speech doesn't always change. Thus:

    1. In a report of a very recent conversation, you can use an original present or present perfect tense, e.g. "MissQ says she has broken her leg". (Original: "I've broken my leg!")

    2. When reporting something that is still the case, you can use a present tense, e.g. "My teacher says the earth goes round the sun!".

    3. When reporting a statement in the simple past tense, you can use the past perfect or the simple past, e.g. "He left a year ago" => "I said he left a year ago" or "I said he'd left a year ago".

    MrP

  3. #3
    njanja is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    97
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Are these sentences correct?

    I still don`t understand if we should always change tenses when we are reporting about something that happened a long time ago.

    For example:

    1 I saw them in 1999,and they told me about a guy they had met two years before.
    2 I saw them in 1999,and they told me about a guy they met two years ago.

    I`m almost sure that the second sentence is completely incorrect,but i need your opinion.

    Thank You.

Similar Threads

  1. Are these sentences correct?
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 03-Jun-2008, 03:59
  2. Correct English-urgent request to correct sentences
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 28-Nov-2006, 18:25
  3. What is the correct of this sentences
    By Nader75 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 29-Dec-2005, 16:54
  4. Are these sentences correct?
    By Could you.. in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-Nov-2005, 09:12
  5. are these sentences correct
    By praveen241 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-Oct-2005, 10:13

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk