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Can I paraphrase (A) into (B)? If so, what's the difference between (B) and (C)?

*(A) He is said to have invented a lot of novel devices.
(B) It is said that he had invented a lot of novel devices.

(C) It is said that he invented a lot of novel devices.*

Thank you in advance.

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By using "It is said" you put the statement as a whole into the present, but "he had invented" takes a viewpoint which is in the past. The two need to be the same.

If you used "It was said that he had invented" you would be talking about past statements, not present ones.

If you used "It is said that he has invented" there is an implication he might invent more.

Your statement (C) is good, and has the same meaning as (A).

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