El estilo directo e indirecto

Direct and Reported Speech (El estilo directo e indirecto)

 

Cuando queremos comunicar o informar de lo que otra persona ha dicho, hay dos maneras de hacerlo: utilizando el estilo directo o el estilo indirecto.

 

Direct Speech (El estilo directo)

Cuando queremos informar exactamente lo que otra persona ha dicho, utilizamos el estilo directo. Con este estilo lo que la persona ha dicho se coloca entre comillas y deberá ser palabra por palabra.

Ejemplos:

I am going to London next week, she said. (“Voy a Londres la semana que viene,” ella dijo.)

Do you have a pen I could borrow, he asked. (“Tienes un bolígrafo que puedas prestarme,” él preguntó.)

Alice said, I love to dance. (Alice dijo, “Me encanta bailar.”)

Chris asked, Would you like to have dinner with me tomorrow night? (Chris preguntó, “Te gustaría cenar conmigo mañana por la noche?”)

 

Reported Speech (El estilo indirecto)

El estilo indirecto, a diferencia del estilo directo, no utiliza las comillas y no necesita ser palabra por palabra. En general, cuando se usa el estilo directo, el tiempo verbal cambia. A continuación tienes un explicación de los cambios que sufren los tiempos verbales.

A veces se usa “that” en las frases afirmativas y negativas para introducir lo que ha dicho la otra persona. Por otro lado, en las frases interrogativas se puede usar “if” o “whether”.

 

Direct Speech Reported Speech
Present Simple Past Simple
He‘s American she said. She said he was American.
I‘m happy to see you, Mary said. Mary said that she was happy to see me.
He asked, “Are you busy tonight? He asked me if I was busy tonight.
Present Continuous Past Continuous
Dan is living in San Francisco, she said. She said Dan was living in San Francisco.
He said, I‘m making dinner. He told me that he was making dinner.
Why are you working so hard? they asked. They asked me why I was working so hard.
Past Simple Past Perfect Simple
We went to the movies last night, he said. He told me they had gone to the movies last night.
Greg said, I didn’t go to work yesterday. Greg said that he hadn’t gone to work yesterday.
“Did you buy a new car? she asked. She asked me if I had bought a new car.
Past Continuous Past Perfect Continuous
I was working late last night, Vicki said. Vicki told me she‘d been working last night.
They said, We weren’t waiting long. They said that they hadn’t been waiting long.
He asked, “Were you sleeping when I called? He asked if I‘d been sleeping when he called.
Present Perfect Simple Past Perfect Simple
Heather said, I‘ve already eaten. Heather told me that she‘d already eaten.
We haven’t been to China,they said. They said they hadn’t been to China.
“Have you worked here before? I asked. I asked her whether she‘d worked there before.
Present Perfect Continuous Past Perfect Continuous
I‘ve been studying English for two years, he said. He said he‘d been studying English for two years.
Steve said, We‘ve been dating for over a year now. Steve told me that they‘d been dating for over a year.
“Have you been waiting long? they asked. They asked whether I‘d been waiting long.
Past Perfect Simple Past Perfect Simple (*NO CHANGE)
I‘d been to Chicago before for work, he said. He said that he‘d been to Chicago before for work.
Past Perfect Continuous Past Perfect Continuous (*NO CHANGE)
She said, “I‘d been dancing for years before the accident. She said she‘d been dancing for years before the accident.

 

Nota: Cuando hablamos de algo que no ha cambiado (todavia es verdad) o que es en el futuro, no tenemos que cambiar el tiempo verbal.

Ejemplos:

“I’m 30 years old,” she said. She said she is 30 years old.

Dave said, “Kelly is sick.” Dave said Kelly is sick.

“We are going to Tokyo next week,” they said. They said they are going to Tokyo next week.

“I’ll cut my hair tomorrow,” Nina said. Nina said she is cutting her hair tomorrow.

 

Modal Verbs (Los verbos modales)

El tiempo verbal cambia en el estilo indirecto también con algunos de los verbos modales:

 

Direct Speech Indirect Speech
Will Would
I‘ll go to the movies tomorrow, John said. John said he would go to the movies tomorrow.
“Will you help me move? she asked. She asked me if I would help her move.
Can Could
Debra said,Allen can work tomorrow. Debra said Allen could work tomorrow.
“Can you open the window, please?, he asked. He asked me if I could open the window.
Must Had to
You must wear your seatbelt, mom said. My mom said we had to wear my seatbelt.
She said, You must work tomorrow. She said I had to work tomorrow.
Shall Should
“Shall we go to the beach today? Tom asked. Tom asked if we should go to the beach today.
What shall we do tonight?” she asked. She asked me what we should do tonight.
May Might/Could
Jane said, I may not be in class tomorrow. Jane said she might not be in class tomorrow.
“May I use the bathroom, please? the boy asked. The boy asked if he could use the bathroom.

 

Nota: Con “would“, “could“, “should“, “might” y “ought to“, el tiempo no cambia.

 

Say vs. Tell

En español podemos traducir “say“o “tell” como “decir”, pero en inglés se usan estos verbos de maneras distintas. Hay unas reglas que indican el uso de uno sobre el otro en inglés, aunque en general usamos “say” para “decir algo” y “tell” para “decir algo a alguien.”

 

Say

Se usa “say” en el estilo directo y el indirecto. Si queremos usar “say” con un objeto personal, necesitamos usar el preposicion “to“.

Ejemplos:

Estilo directo

“I’m hungry,” he said. (“Tengo hambre,” él dijó.)

“I need your help,” Glen said to Mike. (“Necesito tu ayuda,” Glen dijó a Mike.)

She said, “Do you like to dance?” (Ella dijó, “¿Te gusta bailar?”)

Estilo indirecto

He said he was hungry. (Él dijó que tenía hambre.)

Glen said to Mike that he needed his help. (Glen dijó a Mike que necesitaba su ayuda.)

She asked me if I liked to dance. (Me preguntó si me gustaba bailar.)

 

Tell

También se puede usar “tell” con el estilo directo y el indirecto, aunque el uso con el estilo directo no es tan común. Cuando usamos “tell” necesitamos usar un objeto indirecto que va detrás del verbo.

Ejemplos:

Estilo directo

He told me, “I’m hungry.” (Me dijó, “Tengo hambre.”)

Glen told Mike, “I need your help.” (Glen dijó a Mike, “Necesito to ayuda.”)

Estilo indirecto

He told me that he was hungry. (Me dijó que tuvo hambre.)

Glen told Mike that he needed his help. (Glen dijó a Mike que necesitaba su ayuda.)

 

Otros usos de “tell”:

Se usa “tell” con ordenes o instruciones.

Ejemplos:

I told him, “Stop complaining.” (Le dijé, “Deja de quejarte.”)

She told us to hurry. (Nos dijó de darnos prisa.)

Usamos “tell” cuando damos o pedimos información.

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Ejemplos:

“Can you tell me your name please.” (“Dime tu nombre, por favor.”)

You told him the address of the office? (¿Le dijiste la direción de la oficina?)

Se usa “tell” con cuentos o bromas. En esto caso, se puede traducir “tell” como “contar” en español.

Ejemplos:

He told us a great story. (Nos contó un cuento maravilloso.)

“Tell me a joke,” she said. (“Cuentame un chiste,” ella dijó.)

Con la verdad y las mentiras, se usa “tell.”

Ejemplos:

“Tell me the truth,” she said. (“Dime la verdad,” ella dijó.)

Keith never tells lies. (Keith nunca miente.)

Usamos “tell” con el tiempo o la fecha.

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Ejemplos:

“Could you tell me the time, please?” she asked. (“Podrías decirme la hora, por favor?” me preguntó.)

Bob told me the date. (Bob me dijó la fecha.)

Nota: Hay otros significados de “tell” que veremos en la lección sobre los verbos compuestos.

 

 

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