Íàçâàíèå: Business Grammar Builder. Äåëîâîé àíãëèéñêèé: ãðàììàòèêà (Ë.Â. Êîðóõîâà Í.Í. Íîâîñåëüöåâà)
Unit 22 reported speech 2
Say or tell A
We say something and we tell somebody.
Simon said he was confident about the success of the Beta project. Simon told me the project was going well.
We never use to between tell and the object.
He told me what happened in the meeting. (NOT told to me)
We can use to after say, especially when the actual words are not reported.
What did he say to you?
I think the boss wanted to say something to Susan.
Other reporting verbs B
There are many verbs to report what people say. Each verb has one or more possible patterns. Common reporting verbs include:
Verb + -ing form (unit 19) Verb + to infinitive (unit 19)
Verb + object + to infinitive
Verb + that clause
Verb + object + that clause
admit, deny, mention, propose, suggest agree, ask, demand, decide, offer, promise, refuse, threaten
advise, ask, convince, encourage, invite,
order, persuade, remind, tell, warn admit, agree, announce, answer, claim, complain, confirm, deny, explain, mention, promise, propose, reply, say. suggest advise, assure, convince, inform notify, persuade, promise, reassure, remind, tell
They denied doing anything wrong.
I suggested changing our export agency.
She promised to call me tomorrow. They refused to lower their price.
He advised us to wait until next year. They invited me to come for lunch.
They agreed (that) they’d wait.
She promised (that) she’d call me tomorrow.
I reminded them (that) they had to pay a 25\% deposit.
I told him (that) I couldn’t make the meeting next week.
We can also report what people think or know. Verbs include: know, notice, think, realise, etc.
Sorry, I didn’t realise you were busy. I thought you had finished.
It + passive of a reporting verb C
We use It + passive of a reporting verb + that to report what people in general feel or believe. This is a formal use, for example in a newspaper story, a scientific report or a written summery of a meeting.
It was announced at the conference that Argentina was losing Pesos $3,000 million per annum on grain prices compared with the average in the last ten years. It was pointed out that international prices had not improved in two
years, but this stability had allowed an increase in production.
Verbs that are often used in this way are:
be agreed, be announced, be believed, be claimed, be confirmed, be considered, be decided, be estimated, be expected, be feared, be felt, be found, be pointed out, be proposed be reported, be rumoured, be said, be shown, be suggested, be thought.
Reporting questions D
The word order in reported questions is like a normal statement.
‘Where is it?’ He asked me where it was. (NOT where was it)
When we report question word questions (when, what, why, where, how, etc) we use the question word.
‘When will the goods arrive?’ They asked me when the goods
‘Why have your sales gone down?’ I was asked why our sales had gone down.
‘A year ago, I was asked how this wonderful merger between Daimler and Chrysler would work, and I said I was waiting for the interpersonal problems. They were bound to happen, as our experiences with Seat had shown.’ – CEO of Volkswagen.
When we report yes/no questions (Do you, Did you, Are you, etc) we use if
‘Do you speak French?’ She asked me if I spoke French.
(= become older)
‘Are you going to pay in cash?’ He asked me whether I was going to pay in cash.
Notice in the examples that reported questions have no question mark in writing.
Reporting commands and requests E
Commands are reported with tell and the infinitive.
‘Take us to the airport.’ She told the driver to take us to the airport.
‘Don’t worry. I’ll deal with it.’ She told me not to worry.
Requests are reported with ask and the infinitive.
Would you mind waiting for a moment?’ He asked me to wait.
‘Please don’t wait for me, I’ll come along later.’ He asked us not to wait.
(= make it stop working)
PRACTICE REPORTED SPEECH
Exercise 1 (A)
Underline the correct words.
1 Sally told / told me that she had lost the catalogue.
2 This is confidential, please don’t say / tell anything about it.
3 This is confidential, please don’t say / tell anyone about it
4 Chris said / said me he must leave early.
5 I said / told them about the meal, and they said / told they would come.
6 ‘You see,’ told / said Steve, ‘I always told / said you’d get a promotion,’
7 ‘You see,’ told / said Steve, ‘I always told / said you you’d get a promotion,’
8 ‘Look,’ I told to / said to her, ‘why don’t you tell / say me what you mean?’
Exercise 2 (D unit 21)
Rewrite each sentence in reported speech.
1 ‘Are you on holiday for the whole of August?’ she asked me.
She asked me …..
2 ‘What do the letters ‘URL’ mean?’ I asked him.
I asked him …..
3 ‘Have you prepared the figures?’ my boss asked me.
My boss asked me …..
4 ‘When is your birthday?’ I asked Francesca.
I asked Francesca …..
5 ‘Did you remember to back up the file?’ she asked him.
She asked him …..
6 ‘Why have you turned off the air conditioning?’ Ellen asked me.
Ellen asked me …..
7 ‘Do you speak Italian?’ they asked me at the interview.
They asked me at the interview …..
8 ‘How much did you pay for your car?’ I asked Pablo.
I asked Pablo …..
(= not include it in)
Exercise 3 (B)
Match the actual words in sentences 1-12 with the reported statements a) - l).
Exercise 4 (C)
Read the extract from a meeting, chaired by Claudia. Then underline the most appropriate reporting verb in the written summary below.
CLAUDIA: Oh, hi. Take a seat ... Um, I’d like to hear your views on the talks we’re having with BCP about the possible merger. Do you think we should go ahead with the discussions?
NIGEL: Well, no actually. I don’t think we should. Our company cultures are totally different, and I can’t see many opportunities to cut costs in a com-
blown over. (= end without any serious consequences)
bined operation. I’m sorry, but I’m against it.
TONY: But, Nigel, can’t you see that we’re too small to stand alone in the global economy. There’s going to be rationalisation in our market and now is the right time to act.
CLAUDIA: Um, right. How long do you think it would take to integrate the two companies?
TONY: Probably about six months, maybe more.
NIGEL: That’s six months of complete chaos and falling investor confidence. It’s just too risky.
CLAUDIA: Well, I don’t think we have enough information at the moment. Perhaps we could set up a task force to look into the whole issue in more detail?
CLAUDIA: Tony - would you be willing to chair it?
TONY: OK, I’ll chair a task force, but I’ll need representatives from the other departments as well.
CLAUDIA: That shouldn’t be a problem. When do you think you’ll be able to get the report done?
TONY: Um, in about six weeks.
NIGEL: Six weeks! That’s ridiculous.
TONY: OK, we’ll try to get all the information together in four weeks.
CLAUDIA: Right, that’s settled. We’ll meet again a month from today, same time same place.
1 It was estimated/announced that it would take about six months to integrate the two companies in the event of a merger.
2 It was rumoured/suggested that we could set up a task force to produce a report on the implications of the merger.
3 It was proposed/claimed that the task force would be chaired by Tony, with
representatives from other departments.
4 It was shown/agreed that the task force should produce its report in four weeks.
5 It was claimed/decided that the next meeting would be on July 28th at 9 am in the main conference room.
Exercise 5 (A, B, D)
Nigel (from Exercise 4) is talking to a colleague about the same meeting later in the week. Underline correct words in his report.
‘Claudia asked us (1) that we give/to give our opinions about the merger talks. I (2) told them/told to them that I thought the whole thing was a bad idea, but they refused (3) to listen/listening. Of course Tony disagreed, as usual. He (4) told/said that we were too small for the global market. Then Claudia asked how long (5) would it/it would take to integrate the two companies, and Tony claimed it would (6) take/to take six months. Claudia suggested (7) setting up/to set up à task force to look into the whole thing. I decided (8) not saying/not to say anything. Tony offered (9) to chair/that he would chair the task force. He proposed that the task force (10) reporting/should report back in six weeks, but I (11) reminded them that/reminded that we’d need the report much sooner. Anyway, we decided (12) to meet/meeting again in a month.’