I said that Logics and English are inseparable.

That can be interpreted as I said, “Logics and English are inseparable.”

I said why Logics and English are inseparable.

That may be interpreted in two ways.

  1. I said, “Why are Logics and English inseparable?”
  2. I said, “Logics and English are inseparable because…”

I can’t understand why sentence 2 makes sense even though ‘why Logics and English are inseparable’ is definitely an indirect question. Should it be changed into ‘I said about the reason why Logics and English are inseparable’?

  • to say is a poor verb to use in your example I said why Logic and English are inseparable - which can only carry your sense #2 I explained why Logic and English are inseparable, so you should use a verb like that rather than I said. It's not a very good choice for your sense #1 either (that's better expressed by I asked why Logic and English are inseparable). Dec 6, 2021 at 11:57
  • "Don’t tell me why I’m here" is a rather odd thing to say, but it can only really mean "I don't want you to tell me the reason why I am here. Presumably because the speaker himself knows perfectly well why he is wherever he is, and either he doesn't want to be reminded of that reason, OR he thinks the addressee is likely to suggest some different reason that's not true anyway. Dec 6, 2021 at 12:34
  • Note that "why you are here" isn't a question. It's not even a sentence. It's just a noun phrase (equivalent to the reason for you being here) that could be used in a sentence like I know why you are here (I know something - that something being the reason that you are here). Dec 6, 2021 at 12:37
  • Possibly. But how does that help you? You don't seem to have grasped the fact that sentences in English require subject/verb inversion, which is far more useful that knowing whether some sequence of words counts as a "clause" or not. Dec 6, 2021 at 12:47
  • I have no idea what you mean. In my way of looking at things, “why you are here” is a noun phrase. In which context, "phrase" simply means it's a noun consisting of more than one word. But all definitions I know of for a "clause" require that it should include a verb (phrase) as well as a noun (phrase). Dec 6, 2021 at 12:53

1 Answer 1


In order to make a question, you have to invert the subject and the auxiliary verb/be-verb. Watch what happens to the words you and are in the following two sentences:

You are ready. - statement
Are you ready? - question

Looking at your sentence, there is no inversion, so it's completely unambiguous as a statement.

I said why logic and English are inseparable.

If you want to make it a question, you would have to do inversion and put the question in quotes:

I said "Why are logic and English inseparable?"

Alternatively, you can change the verb to indicate that it is a question:

I asked why logic and English are inseparable.

Note that logic is uncountable, so you do not make it plural.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .