Not so common reporting verbs

May 7, 2013pdf

In informal spoken reports, say, think and ask are the most common reporting verbs. These verbs can go before sentences or between clauses.

  • She asked me what I was doing there.
  • He said that he wouldn’t go.
  • I thought that it was funny.

A much wider variety of reporting verbs are also available in English. If you repeat the reporting verbs say and think, your writing and speech will become boring after a while.

The reporting verbs given in this lesson are not very common, but they are quite useful.

To say something suddenly

Use a reporting verb like blurt, exclaim or snap to suggest that somebody said something suddenly.


To blurt something out is to say something suddenly without thinking about the consequences.

  • She blurted out his name.

To snap is to speak to someone in a sudden, angry way.

  • ‘Who do you think you are?’ he snapped angrily.


To exclaim is to say something suddenly and loudly, especially because you are surprised, impressed, upset, angry etc

  • ‘Hurrah!’ Jack exclaimed. ‘We’ve won!’

Giving advice, opinion etc.

Some common reporting verbs used to give advice or express your opinion are: advise, argue, caution, note, observe, warn etc.

  • The mother cautioned the child to be careful while crossing the road.
  • The teacher warned the students to be extra careful while handling harmful chemicals.

Say loudly

The following reporting verbs can be used to suggest that somebody said something loudly: exclaim, bellow, call, cry, scream, shout, yell


To bellow is to shout something loudly.

  • ‘I won’t go!’ he bellowed.


To scream is to make a loud cry because you are frightened or hurt.

  • When he saw a dark figure moving towards him, the boy screamed in horror.


To yell is to say something in a loud voice.

  • Why are you yelling at me?


To shout is to say something loudly.

  • He shouted that he was busy.
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