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Reported speech (Changes in second person)

‘Second person’ in direct speech is changed into  either  ‘first person’  or  ‘third person’  in  reported speech, as shown below.

Direct speech         ————->              Reported speech

Second person  ——————>  First person      or   Third person

You (Sub)                                     I / We                     he/ she / they

You ( obj )                                   me/us                      him/her/ them

Your(P.Adj)                                 my/our                     his/her/ their

Yours ( P. Pron)                          mine/ ours               his/hers/ theirs

Yourself(E.P/R.P)                       myself/ ——           himself/herself/ ———

Yourselves( ” )                           ——–/ ourselves     ——-/———/ themselves

As  ‘yourself’ is singular, it is only related to ‘first’  and ‘third’ person  ‘singulars’.   Similarly, the plural ‘yourselves’ is only related to ‘first’ and ‘third’ person ‘plurals’.

  Now,  let’s go through an example to understand  the above mentioned changes in second person  ‘You’.

  • Manuel said to his wife, ” Darling,   ‘you’ look so beautiful today. ‘You’ seem to have used the new cream on ‘your’ face”

Manuel told his wife lovingly that ‘she’ looked so beautiful that day,  and added that  ‘she’ seemed to have used the new cream on ‘her’ face.

Here, we can see that the ‘second person’ subject  ‘you’ is changed into ‘third person singular’ subject ‘she’ and the second person possessive adjective  ‘your’  is changed into third person singular possessive adjective ‘her’, as  the ‘you’ here stands only for one person. ( Manuel’s wife)

Another example,

Teacher said to us, ” ‘you’ are the best students I have ever seen “

Teacher told us that  ‘we’ were the best students she had ever seen.

Here, the second person subject  ‘you’  is changed into the first person plural subject  ‘we’,  as  the  ‘you’ here stands for  more than one person( We)

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