I want to report these sentences beginning with the sentences in brackets:

  1. Your shoes will be ready tomorrow. (the shoemaker told Mary)
  2. Did you go to the cinema yesterday? (Andrew asked Ali)
  3. That letter was posted ten days ago. (the postman told Adams)

My answers:

  1. the shoemaker told Mary that her shoes would be ready tomorrow
  2. Andrew asked Ali if he has went to cinema yesterday
  3. the postman told Adams that letter has been posted ten days ago
  • It's an error. Was Posted
    – A. T
    Jul 18, 2016 at 9:34

2 Answers 2


If we are changing reported speech irrespective of time, we should keep the following changes in mind,

Today to that day

Tomorrow to the next day

Yesterday to the day before

Now to then

Last week to the week before

If we are changing sentences to reported speech on the same day it was said, then we can keep the mentioned time phrases unchanged.Also you can keep will in first sentence unchanged, if you are saying it in reported speech on the same day it was said.

So, we should change the sentences given by you like the following,

  1. The shoemaker told Mary that her shoes would/will be ready by the next day/tomorrow.(future tense to present conditional)

  2. Andrew asked Ali whether he had gone to the cinema the previous day/yesterday.

In the third sentence, you should use "posted" instead of "post" as the sentence is in past tense.

  1. The postman told Adams that the letter had posted ten days ago (past tense to past perfect).
  • Had went is never grammatical in standard English. The would in the reported speech of #1 is not conditional would. You need to capitalize names of people: Mary, Ali, Adams. It is also possible to keep the will in #1 if what is reported is still true. That is, if it is not tomorrow yet, you can keep will be ready tomorrow. Jul 18, 2016 at 4:26
  • Thanks for your comment :) .Using m in mary is due to casual typing.Thanks for mentioning it.When it comes to "had went", I am wondering how I committed that blunder.Also I mentioned about changing "tomorrow" in 7th line of my answer.I read somewhere that future tense is changed to present conditional in reported speech.I am thanking you again for your concern. Jul 18, 2016 at 12:30
  • I edited my answer and removed errors :) Jul 18, 2016 at 12:38

Number 1 is correct. For number 2 and 3, I would have the following:

2. Andrew asked Ali if he went to the cinema yesterday. (Remove has).

3. The postman told Adams that the letter had been posted ten days ago. (Change to past perfect tense).

  • I can't upvote because it seems I must have 15 reputations, I don't know what is it. But I'm very happy for your answer
    – A. T
    Jun 17, 2016 at 11:13

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