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I think Me ( Matt ) should have said : " I went to Italy after I had finished school. " When you talk about two incidents that happened in the past, the one that goes first is in past perfect, followed by past tense. e.g. (I had switched off the light before I went to sleep.) or (I had packed all my stuff before I left for my trip.)


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Some English speakers, it seems, no longer shift tenses in indirect discourse. I speak a relatively conservative dialect, and I do. I find all your examples acceptable (and some additional variants) except this one: 1) *"He said (that) he had had a grandpa who had died when he had been ninety-seven." It is not obvious why this is ungrammatical. I ...


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Both are grammatical and mean ALMOST the same thing. The difference is that the second tends to convey the implication that plans have changed and what he said is no longer true -- one can almost hear a "but" following the sentence. He said we would get married when we get older. Last night Billy told me we'd get married in a couple of years, when I'm ...


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It's all about something called 'backshift'. With verbs of reporting that are in the past tense, like "said", you have the option to either backshift the tense, or keep the original present tense when you report what was said. The original utterance would have been in the present tense: "We will get married when we get older". But the report of it ...


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Interestingly, both sentences are grammatical, and they mean the same thing -- at least they do in a context where all uses of we refer to the same two people. He said we would get married when we get older. He said we would get married when we got older. Rules taught in schools about what verb forms must be used in conditional clause constructions ...


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If you are paraphrasing what "he" said, which you clearly are, then it is reported speech that is indirect speech, which requires you to use the past tense: He said we would get married when he got older.


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The following are all grammatical in this context, and mean the same thing (commas optional): He said (that) if I want to come, to call him before 5:00. He said (that) if I wanted to come, to call him before 5:00. He said (that), if I want to come, I should/can call him before 5:00. He said (that), if I wanted to come, I should/could call him before 5:00. ...


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You need to put the first clause in the past, and to paraphrase the second clause by using should. He said that if I wanted to come, I should call him before 5:00.


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You are asking about reported indirect speech rather than direct speech. This means that you are paraphrasing what the original speaker said rather than quoting them exactly. When reporting speech indirectly, the correct way normally uses "that" after "said" and puts the speech being reported into a past-tense. Your question proposes the following ...


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Bob's friends said that he had been a champion swimmer at school. Bob is said to have been a champion swimmer at school. Bob was said to have been a champion swimmer at school. 1 is passive. 2 and 3 are both active. 2 and 3 are not the same. Here's proof. Then people found out Bob cheated. They don't say that anymore. If that ...



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