Direct Speech

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direct speech

Direct speech refers to the direct quotation of something that someone else said. It is sometimes known as quoted speech. Because the quotation happened in the past, we put the reporting verb into the past simple tense, but we don’t change the verbs used within the quotation. We also punctuate sentences in a certain way when we use direct speech in writing.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Direct Speech


(direct discourse), an utterance introduced word for word into an author’s speech or text. Unlike indirect speech, direct speech preserves the individual and stylistic peculiarities of the speech of the person whose utterance is being quoted, including dialect features, repetitions, pauses, and parenthetic words. Direct speech is introduced without conjunctions or personal pronouns, with verb forms indicating the relationship of the speaker to the utterance. An example of direct speech is the following: You said, “I’ll return late.” In indirect speech, this would be: You said that you would return late.

In Russian, direct speech is usually set off in text by quotation marks or by an indentation and a dash. Direct quotations are considered a variety of direct speech.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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