Direct and Indirect Speech Exercises for Class 10 CBSE With Answers

When we use the exact words of the speaker, it is called direct speech. Indirect or Reported Speech refers to a sentence reporting what someone has said.

Basic English Grammar rules can be tricky. In this article, we’ll get you started with the basics of sentence structure, punctuation, parts of speech, and more. in this page, we have explained the Reported Speech Exercises for Class 10.

Direct and Indirect Speech Exercises for Class 10 CBSE With Answers PDF

1. When the actual words are spoken are quoted, it is called Direct Speech.
2. When we report without quoting the exact words spoken it is called Indirect Speech.

  • Ram said, “I am very busy now.” (Direct).
  • Ram said that he was very busy then. (Indirect)


  • In the Direct Speech, inverted commas are used to show the exact words of the speaker. In Indirect Speech, it is not so.
  • In the Indirect Speech, a conjunction that is used before the indirect statement.
  • The pronoun ‘l’ is changed to ‘he’.
  • The verb ‘am’ is changed to ‘was’.
  • The adverb ‘now’ is changed to ‘then’.

When the reporting verb is in the past tense, all present tenses of the direct speech are changed into the corresponding past tenses.

  • am/is → was
  • will → would
  • are → were
  • can → could
  • do/does → did
  • want/like/know/go, etc. → wanted/liked/went
  • have/has → had

The past simple (did/saw/knew, etc.) can usually stay the same in reported speech or can be changed to the past perfect (had done/had seen/had known, etc.)

  • Harjot said: “I woke up feeling ill, so I didn’t go to school.” – (direct)
  • Harjot said that she woke up feeling ill, so she didn’t go to school. – (reported)
  • Harjot said she had woken up feeling ill, so she hadn’t gone to school. (reported)

(a) A simple present becomes a simple past.

  • Direct : He said, “I am unwell.”
  • Indirect : He said that he was unwell.

(b) A present continuous becomes a past continuous.

  • Direct : He said, “My master is writing letters.”
  • Indirect : He said that his master was writing letters.

(c) A present perfect becomes a past perfect.

  • Direct : He said, “I have passed the examination.”
  • Indirect : He said that he had passed the examination.

(d) The simple past becomes the past perfect.

  • Direct : He said, “The horse died in the night.”
  • Indirect : He said that the horse had died in the night.

If the reporting verb is in the present tense the tenses of the direct speech do not change. We may thus rewrite the given examples putting the reporting verb in the present tense.

  • He says he is unwell.
  • He has just said his master is writing letters.
  • He says he has passed the examination.
  • He says the horse died in the night.

Words expressing nearness in time or place are changed into words expressing distance.

Word  Changed as
now  then
here  there
this  that
today  that
day tomorrow  the next day
yesterday  the day before/the previous day
last night  the night before/the previous night
Direct :  He said, “I am glad to be here this evening.”
Indirect :  He said that he was glad to be there that evening.

Direct And Indirect Speech Worksheets With Answers Pdf for Class 10 CBSE

In reporting questions, indirect speech is introduced by verbs as ‘asked’, ‘inquired’ etc.

  • Direct : He said to me, “What are you doing?”
  • Indirect : He asked me what I was doing.

When the question is not introduced by an interrogative word the reporting verb is followed by ‘if’ or ‘whether’.

  • Direct : He said, “Will you listen to such a man?”
  • Indirect : He asked them if/whether they would listen to such a man.

Reported Speech Commands And Requests Examples

Imperative mood is changed into the infinitive and verbs expressing command or request to introduce indirect speech.

  • Direct : Ram said to Arjun, “Go away.”
  • Indirect : Ram ordered Arjun to go away.
  • Direct : He said to him, “Please wait here till I return.”
  • Indirect : He requested him to wait there till he returned.

Direct and Indirect Exclamatory and Wishes Example
Words expressing exclamation or wish to introduce the Indirect Speech.

  • Direct : Ela said, “How clever I am!”
  • Indirect : Ela exclaimed that she was very clever.

Change the following sentences into Indirect Speech:

  1. The captain said, “Bravo! well done, my boys.”
  2. He said to her, “Why do you read this book?”
  3. He said to her, “Does your cow not kick?”
  4. He said to his brother, “Shailesh has broken my glass.”
  5. Our teacher said, “The earth revolves around the sun.”
  6. He said to me, “Why have you come here?”
  7. Usha said, “Father, you are very kind to me.”
  8. The teacher said to the boys, “Do not make a noise.”
  9. He said to his friend, “May you prosper in business!”
  10. The officer said to the peon, “Let the visitor come into my office.”