Assuming that I told you 2 days ago, "I promise I will call you tomorrow". But I didn't. So now I have to apologize you. Then I say "I promised I would call you the next day." is it correct?

  • To make the time-frame comprehended by the follow-up sentence more coherent, you could preface it with "Two days ago," as in "Two days ago, I promised I would call you the next day." but the syntax of the wording you suggest is error-free. – Sven Yargs Feb 22 '15 at 22:26

Yes, it's correct. Would is the preterite form of the modal auxiliary will. Referring to a past event, you're putting both promise and will in the preterite. And the implicit reference for tomorrow is now: it means the next day in relation to now. Since you're putting the whole thing into the past, it makes absolute sense to do what you've done and to transform tomorrow into something which doesn't have that implicit reference.

  • And "the next day" is generally used to refer to a tomorrow that was mentioned in the past so it's correct in popular usage as well as in a grammatical sense – LightMikeE Feb 24 '15 at 7:25
  • I agree with Lachlan. – Michael Rize Feb 24 '15 at 9:33

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