Reported speech questions


Indirect Yes/No questions

The table below shows Yes/No questions in Reported Speech in English.

  Actual questions Indirect questions
be 'Are you ready?' He asked (me) if/whether I am/was ready.
have 'Have you finished?' He asked (me) if/whether I (have)/had finished.
do 'Do you play the piano?' He asked (me) if/whether I play/played the piano.
modals 'Can I have it?' He asked (me) if/whether I can/could have it.

Indirect question-word questions

The table below shows questions in Reported Speech starting with question words.

  Actual questions Indirect questions
be 'Where are you going?' He asked (me) where I was going.
have 'Why haven't you finished?' He asked (me) why I (haven't)/hadn't finished.
do 'What do you think of it?' He asked (me) what I (think)/thought of it.
modals 'When I must arrive there?' He asked (me) when he must/had to arrive there.

Indirect subject questions

The table below shows subject questions in Reported Speech in English. As you can see here, the order of the words in this type of questions is the same as in direct questions. You should remember to change the tenses (where necessary) and pronouns or time expressions.

  Actual questions Indirect questions
be 'Who is in charge here?' He asked (me) who was in charge there.
present 'Which company delivers these parts?' He asked (me) which company (delivers)/delivered those parts.
past 'What caused the accident?' He asked (me) what caused/had caused the accident.
modals 'Whose film will win the Oscar?' He asked (me) whose film would win the Oscar.
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