change ~ tense change
what is said by somebody is often reported subsequently at
a different time and in a different place. This change of time
nearly always results in a change of tense.
a past-tense reporting verb is used, the tense of what was
said originally usually moves one tense back into the past.
the following examples which all relate to Tom and Julia's engagement
party and observe how the tenses change:
Are you going to Tom and Julia's engagement party?
I asked him if he was going to Tom and Julia's engagement
Can you pick me up from the station?
I wondered whether they might be able to pick me up from
Who's that girl in the red dress, Tom?
I asked Tom who that girl in the red dress was.
How did you make that salad, Julie?
I asked Julie how she had made the salad.
How much wine have you brought, Mike?
I wanted to know how much wine Mike had brought.
We're getting married on 4 July and have bought
a house in Manchester.
They explained that they were getting married on 4 July
and had bought a house in Manchester.
final example relates to a point in time which is still in the
future even when the original speech is reported. No tense
change is also possible:
They explained that they're getting married on 4 July and
have bought a house in Manchester.
reference to the future, consider the way I love you is reported
in these examples and the way in which the meaning changes depending
on how it is reported:
told me that he loved me
. But I now know
that he was lying.
has told me that he loves me
. And I think
that may be true.