Direct and Indirect Speech for class 8

Direct and Indirect Speech are two ways to report what someone else said. This article will help you understand direct and indirect speech and their examples. 

Direct Speech

  • Direct Speech is used to quote someone’s exact words.
  • It uses the exact words spoken by the person and is enclosed in quotation marks.
  • It is introduced by a reporting verb such as “said,” “told,” “asked,” etc. A reporting clause includes the reporting verb and the subject.


Direct Speech: Tom said, “I love playing soccer.”

Reporting clause: “Tom said”

Quotation: “I love playing soccer”

Indirect Speech

  • Indirect Speech reports what was said without using the speaker’s exact words and does not require quotation marks. 
  • It is used to report someone’s words indirectly.
  • It usually includes a reporting verb and a reporting clause.
  • The reported sentence is often changed to match the context.


Direct Speech: “I love playing soccer,” said Tom

Indirect Speech: Tom said that he loved playing soccer.

Changing Pronouns

When changing from Direct to Indirect Speech, pronouns may need to be adjusted.

Direct SpeechIndirect Speech
1st person pronouns (I, me, we, us) Often changes according to the subject of the reporting clause. For instance, “I” may become “he” or “she.”
The 2nd person pronoun “you” Usually it changes to “he/she/they” or “him/her/them.”
3rd person pronouns (he, she, it, they)Remains the same

Changing Tenses

When shifting to indirect speech, verb tenses may change according to the reporting verb’s tense.

  • Present tense can change to past tense.
  • Past tense can change to past perfect tense.
  • Future tense can change to conditional tense.
Simple Present Tense​She said, “I eat food.”​Simple Past Tense​She said that she ate food.​
Present Continuous Tense​She said, “I am eating food.”​Past Continuous Tense​She said that she was eating food.​
Present Perfect Tense​She said, “I have eaten food.”​Past Perfect Tense​She said that she had eaten food.​
Simple Past Tense​She said, “I ate food.”​Past Perfect Tense​She said that she had eaten food.​
Past Continuous Tense​She said, “I was eating food.”​Past Perfect Continuous Tense​She said that she had been eating food. ​

Punctuation Changes

  • In Direct Speech, quotation marks are used to enclose the speaker’s exact words.
  • In Indirect Speech, quotation marks are not used.
  • Commas, full stops, question marks, etc., may need to be adjusted based on the structure of the reported sentence.

Question: Convert the following direct speech into indirect speech.

  1. “I enjoy playing soccer,” said Tom.
  2. “We are going to have a party,” said Emily.
  3. “He is watching a movie,” said Alex.
  4. “My parents will take us on a trip,” said Lily.
  5. “They have finished their homework,” said the teacher. give the answers 


  1. Tom said that he enjoyed playing soccer.
  2. Emily said that they were going to have a party.
  3. Alex said that he was watching a movie.
  4. Lily said that her parents would take them on a trip.
  5. The teacher said that they had finished their homework.