Example with Portuguese indirect speech: Ele disse que queria ir na feira.

Hey you! Ready to learn Portuguese online? Today we are going to talk about Portuguese Indirect Speech. Let’s start…

What is Portuguese Indirect Speech?

When we are talking, telling stories we have some ways to control the narrative, right? We can tell a story using direct speech or using Portuguese indirect speech.

Direct speech is almost a transcription of what has been said. That is, the exact words that someone used. Take a look:

Eu vou à praia.
I’ll go to the beach. 

Can you see that these are the exact words that someone has said? Let’s change this sentence into indirect speech (also known as reported speech):

Maria disse que ia à praia.
She said she was going to the beach.

Here we transformed the verbs to change the mode of speech. In the first sentence it’s someone talking about themselves, in the second sentence it’s another person talking about Maria.

Transforming direct speech into Portuguese Indirect Speech

To transform direct speech to the indirect we have to follow some rules. Take a look at this table and see how we make theses changes.

Present

Presente do indicativo ou subjuntivo Imperfeito do indicativo ou subjuntivo
Eu vou à praia.
I’ll go to the beach. 
Maria disse que ia à praia.
She said she would  go to the beach.
Talvez eu durma muito.
Maybe I’ll sleep a long time.
Ela disse que talvez dormisse muito.
She said that maybe she‘d sleep a long time.

When we have a direct sentence in the present of indicative or present of subjunctive to put it in the indirect speech in Portuguese we must change the verb to the imperfect tense of indicative or imperfect of subjunctive.

Past tense

Perfeito do indicativo ou subjuntivo Mais-que-perfeito do indicativo ou subjuntivo
Nós nunca fomos ao Rio.
We never went to Rio.
Eles disseram que nunca tinham ido ao Rio.
They said they had never been to Rio.
Estou feliz que você tenha vindo ao Rio.
I’m glad that you came to Rio.
Ela disse que estava feliz que ele tivesse vindo ao Rio.
She said she was happy that he had come to Rio.

When the sentence is in the past of indicative or subjunctive we have to put in the pluperfect past when changing it to the Portuguese indirect speech.

Future 

Futuro do presente Futuro do pretérito
Amanhã iremos estudar Português online.
Tomorrow we’ll study Portuguese online.
Eles disseram que no dia seguinte iriam estudar Português online.
They said that the next day they would study Portuguese online.
Ela vai viajar.
She’ll travel.
Ela disse que iria viajar.
She said she was going to travel.

When the sentence is in the future tense in direct speech, we must put in the conditional future to change it into indirect speech.

Future Subjunctive 

Futuro do subjuntivo Imperfeito do subjuntivo
Quando eu ganhar dinheiro, vou comprar uma casa.
When I make money, I will buy a house.
Ele disse que quando ganhasse dinheiro, compraria uma casa.
He said that when he earned money, he would buy a house.
Quando fizer sol, irei à praia.
When it’s sunny, I’ll go to the beach.
Ela disse que quando fizesse sol, iria à praia.
She said that when it was sunny, she would go to the beach.

Finally, the last case is when we have a sentence in the future of subjunctive, and we must put it in the imperfect of subjunctive.

Time and space in the Portuguese indirect speech

When we are talking about words related to time and space, we’ll have to change them too because their references will change according to our mode of speech. Take a look at the table:

Portuguese indirect speech. Palavras relacionadas com tempo e espaço. Discurso direto: este, aqui, hoje, agora, ontem, amanhã. Discurso Indireto: aquele, lá, naquele dia, naquele momento, no dia anterior, no dia seguinte.

To make sure you’ve got it, here’s the translation:

Direct Speech Indirect Speech
This That
Here There
Today That day
Now At that moment
Yesterday The day before
Tomorrow The next day

You now know everything about reported speech in Portuguese, let’s practice shall we?

Now it’s your turn!

Now it’s your turn to practice! Change the the sentences below into the Portuguese indirect speech.

  1. Eu quero fazer aulas de Português para negócios.
  2. Nós vamos viajar em janeiro.
  3. Se ele puder, ficará em casa.
  4. Eu esperava que você viesse mais cedo.
  5. Ele vai vir na minha casa.
  6. Vou trabalhar muito essa semana.
  7. Ontem vimos um filme ruim.
  8. Talvez veja meus amigos na sexta-feira.
  9. Quando você chegar, ficarei mais tranquila.
  10. Elas compraram motos.

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Ler esta Dica em Português  Leer esta Dica en Español
Click on the links below to see more related Dicas
Present Subjunctive in Portuguese
Imperfect Subjunctive
Portuguese Pluperfect
Future Conditional in Portuguese

Answers

  1. Ela disse que queria fazer aulas de Português para negócios.
  2. Eles disseram que iam viajar em janeiro.
  3. Ele disse que se pudesse, ficaria em casa.
  4. Ela disse que queria que você viesse mais cedo.
  5. Ela disse que ele ia vir na sua casa.
  6. Ele disse que ia trabalhar muito naquela semana.
  7. Eles disseram que tinham visto um filme ruim no dia anterior.
  8. Ela disse que talvez visse seus amigos na sexta-feira.
  9. Ela disse que quando você chegasse, ficaria mais tranquila.
  10. Elas disseram que iam comprar motos.

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