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Hi beloved teachers,

Could you please check if I've converted the following "quoted speeches" into "reported speeches" correctly?

1)
She said to her sister, "Why did you come here when you knew I wasn't here?"
She asked her sister (that) why she had gone there when she knew she wasn't there.

[ I'm confused about the 'when she knew she wasn't there' part. Can we rewrite our original sentence as "She asked her sister (that) why she had gone there when she HAD KNOWN she HADN'T BEEN there" ? ]

2)
Sarah said to me, "I will help you with the route when I learn about it."
Sarah told me (that) she would help me with the route when she learned about it. [ Is 'learned' correct here? as per the back-shift rules it should be correct, I am not sure though. ]

I OFTEN GET CONFUSED WHEN I HAVE TO DECIDE WHETHER OR NOT I SHOULD BACK-SHIFT THE SIMPLE PAST(in Direct speech) TO THE PAST PERFECT (in Reported speech).

Could anyone please help me understand this concept ?

Thank you.

Laborious
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She said to her sister, "Why did you come here when you knew I wasn't here?"
She asked her sister (that) why she had gone there when she knew she wasn't there.

We do not use "why" and "that" together.

This is a subordinate clause: when she knew she wasn't there.
Generally they are left unchanged.

The same is true for this one:
Sarah told me (that) she would help me with the route when she learns about it.
LaboriousCould anyone please help me understand this concept ?
Do you know about clauses?
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LaboriousShe said to her sister, "Why did you come here when you knew I wasn't here?"
She (Jane) asked her sister (Lois) why she (Lois) had come there when she (Lois) knew that she (Jane) wasn't there.

(Too many "she"s in the example. Use a better example next time, perhaps with names and a "he" and a "she". Otherwise it gets too confusing.)

"had known" and "hadn't been" in this sentence are unnecessary, and besides, they would be far too awkward.
LaboriousSarah said to me, "I will help you with the route when I learn about it."
Sarah told me she would help me with the route when she learned about it.< This one is technically correct and fine in any situation.

Sarah told me she would help me with the route when she learns about it.< This one can be used when, at the time of saying it, Sarah has not yet learned about the route. (The previous one is good, too, in this case.)
LaboriousWHETHER OR NOT I SHOULD BACK-SHIFT
Back-shift unless there is an awkward accumulation of had beens and had knowns and had thoughts. There really isn't any rule that can be stated with mathematical accuracy about how to handle every situation. Emotion: smile

CJ
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Comments  
hmmmm thanx
 CalifJim's reply was promoted to an answer.
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Thank you, sir CJ and Ma'am A-Stars, for your kind replies.So, can I say that we don't back-shift the past tense to past perfect tense when we have stative verbs (i.e. verbs that do not show any movement)?And dear A-Starts, I don't know much about clauses, but I'd like to.Thank you.Laborious
When converting a question into indirect speech, retain the wh-word or How; if there is no wh-word or How use wheteh or if and use a sentence consruction.
James asked me,"Why are you staring at me?
James asked me why I was staring at him.
John asked me," Are you gong to Sydney?
John asked me whether i was going to Sydney.
That is used only when you change a statement.