Difference Between Says and Said

By: | Updated: Nov-28, 2021
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English is a fascinating language. As you know, it is spoken by almost every country in the world and its speakers include people from all backgrounds and ethnicities. The English language has changed over time and this is what makes it so fascinating. The English language has evolved from Old English to Modern English and it has continued to change even up to this day. There are many different factors that have influenced the English language over time, and there are also rules that have helped it evolve.

Summary Table

Says Said
Present tense Past tense
Singular Plural
Describes a statement that is being said Can also be used to emphasize something more important

Verbs are one of the most important aspects of the English language. English verbs are inflected to reflect the speaker’s attitude towards the action that is being described. The use of verbs can be found in almost every sentence in English. A verb is the core of any sentence.

Sometimes, English uses different verbs to indicate the same action. Sometimes we also uses different kinds of verbs to refer to different nouns. For example, the words “says” and “said” are both used to refer to statements. However, they are used in different ways.

There are two main types of verbs in English: active and passive. These verbs indicate the person or thing that is doing the action. The active verbs tell us what is happening and the passive verbs tell us about what is done to the subject of the sentence. The words “says” and “said” are affected by this.

But what are the differences between the two verbs? Why do we use “says” and “said” to refer to statements? When should we use “says” and “said”? In this article, we will look at the differences between the two verbs and how to use them. We will also look at the correct time to use each verb.

Difference Between Says and Said

What Does it Mean by “Says”?

The word “says” is a verb and it means to communicate. In the English language, the verb “say” is often used in statements. A statement can be a direct or indirect one.

Direct Statement: “She says that she will buy the new iPhone.”

Indirect Statement: “The report says that there will be a recession in the next year.”

“Says” is also used in sentences to communicate the truth. It is important to note that there are some statements that we can not call as “says.” For example, “We say that we will arrive at 5:00 p.m.” This is a direct statement and therefore, we cannot call it as “says.” “Says” is used for a singular subject, “she says” or “he says.” However, it is not used for “I” since we can use “say” for a “I”.

When we use “says” in a sentence, we can add other words or phrases. For example, “He says that he has been to Italy.” In this sentence, we have added the word “that” to add more information.

In the English language, the verb “says” needs to be followed by an object or an adverb to show the meaning of the statement, to show what the subject is “talking” about or what they are “communicating.”

What Does it Mean by “Said”?

The word “said” is often used to refer to a statement. A statement can also be called a sentence, which is just a word that is used to express an idea. Statements can be as simple as a name or as complex as a complete story. Statements can also be an opinion, which is something that someone believes in.

Examples of Statements:

“I am hungry.” (The speaker is hungry.)

“I like the song ‘Shake It Off.'” (The speaker likes the song “Shake It Off.”)

“I can’t play the piano.” (The speaker can’t play the piano.)

“My name is Anna.” (The speaker’s name is Anna.)

Now, “said” is used by the noun or pronoun to which it refers. “Said” is also used to make a statement in the passive voice or a past tense.

“I said that I would be there.” (The speaker said that he would be there.)

“She said her name was Anna.” (The speaker said her name was Anna.)

“I said that she was my girlfriend.” (The speaker said that she was his girlfriend.)

How are They Related?

To begin, we must first understand how the two verbs are related. “Said” is the past tense of “say.” “Says” is a contracted form of “said.” Both verbs are used to refer to statements made by people. They both also have other uses, but these two are their primary uses. Both “says” and “said” are derived from the base word “say.”

In the English language, there are two different ways to form the present tense of a verb. It depends on the noun or pronoun that the verb is acting upon. In addition, there are two types of nouns; singular and plural. Singular nouns refer to one person or thing, such as “I,” “girl,” “book,” or “letter.” Plural nouns refer to more than one person or thing, such as “girls,” “books,” or “letters.”

However, in the present tense, we can either use the base word or the base word plus an “s”. This is the case when the noun, plural or singular, is a third person. Thus, when we use “say” to form the present tense, the noun should be either “I,” “we,” or other first person nouns. When we use “says” to form the present tense, the noun should be either “she,” “he,” or other third person, singular nouns.

Now, when do we use “said”?

We use “said” when the person or thing we are referring to has done the action of speaking. The person or thing has spoken. This means that we should use “said” to refer to a statement made by a person or thing in a past tense. We would use “said” to refer to a statement made by a person in the past.

Example: “He said, ‘We have to work on the problem tomorrow.'”

What are the Differences?

The difference between “says” and “said” can be seen in the following points:

  1. The Tenses

“Says” is a present tense verb, while “said” is a past tense verb.

  1. Plural or Singular

“Says” is a singular verb, while “said” is a plural verb. This means that you use “says” when referring to one person and it should be in the form of a third person. “Said” can be used when referring to one or more people.

  1. Emphasize or Not

Since “say” is a present tense verb, it is not always used to emphasize something. It is used to simply describe something that is happening. “Said” is used to emphasize something, when the speaker wants to make it more important.

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