It was said or It was told

Stallion007

Senior Member
Hindi
I have written a sentence where I'm narrating an incident where a conversation took place between the God and his servant. The sentence is like...

And when it was said to him, "...And I'm your lord. I just want your well being. The servant replied ..."

As you can see, I have used it was said in this sentence. But I'm confused. So I would like to know whether the above sentence is correct or should I use it was told instead and the difference between these two.
Thanks en avance.
 
  • Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    If you want to use "told", the structure is different, and you would have to say "And when he was told" instead of "And when it was said to him". There may be a reason for preferring one over the other, but neither is obviously right or wrong in your short quote.

    You appear to have the quotation marks in the wrong place. Also, although it is possible to begin sentences with "and", it is very unusual to do so in modern English.
     

    Stallion007

    Senior Member
    Hindi
    If you want to use "told", the structure is different, and you would have to say "And when he was told" instead of "And when it was said to him". There may be a reason for preferring one over the other, but neither is obviously right or wrong in your short quote.

    You appear to have the quotation marks in the wrong place. Also, although it is possible to begin sentences with "and", it is very unusual to do so in modern English.
    The complete sentence is like -
    When it was said to him, "Oh my servant, I have chosen you for this job. So why do you fear?" Arthur replied, "But God, I don't wanna leave my mother. Who's gonna take care of her?"

    The usage of "It was said" is correct? Or should I use "It was told" instead.
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    Neither sounds correct. Are you trying to write in an archaic style? Who 'said this to him'? If it was God then the sentence should start with "God said to him". Why is 'Arthur' (who is he?) talking in anachronistic substandard modern English? It's all puzzling! :)
     

    Stallion007

    Senior Member
    Hindi
    Neither sounds correct. Are you trying to write in an archaic style? Who 'said this to him'? If it was God then the sentence should start with "God said to him". Why is 'Arthur' (who is he?) talking in anachronistic substandard modern English? It's all puzzling! :)
    It's a little biblical, actually.
    I already mentioned it in the previous sentence so it's clear that there is a conversation going on between the God and his servant (Arthur).
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    "Said" is better than "told" here because God is actually asking a question.

    [Off-topic comment removed. DonnyB - moderator]
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    Ahmed Al Saady

    Senior Member
    Arabic
    Hi, everyone!
    I hope everything's alright.

    1. The only person who deserves to be said every word of love crossing your mind, is the one who loves you, not anyone else.
    2. The only person who deserves to be told every word of love crossing your mind, is the one who loves you, not anyone else.

    Would you kindly tell me which of the two sentences above is correct?
    I.e., should I use the word "said" or "told"?

    Thank you very much!
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    1. The only person who deserves to be said every word of love crossing your mind, is the one who loves you, not anyone else.
    2. The only person who deserves to be told every word of love crossing your mind, is the one who loves you, not anyone else.

    Would you kindly tell me which of the two sentences above is correct?
    I.e., should I use the word "said" or "told"?

    Thank you very much!
    You need "told". In that sentence, "said" is grammatically incorrect. :)
     

    Ahmed Al Saady

    Senior Member
    Arabic
    You need "told". In that sentence, "said" is grammatically incorrect. :)
    Thank you very much for the answer!
    Well, one of my good teachers here told me that they would Not use the word "told" in the following sentence "He still remembers every word of love she told him", and they'd use the word "said" instead; like this... "He still remembers every word of love she said to him".
    May you kindly tell me why the word "told" in the sentence above can't be used?
    Thank you very much!
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    In the two sentences in post #7, you need "told". The subject of the passive verb is the person the thing is spoken to, and only "tell" can function in this way.

    Another difference between "tell" and "say" is that "say" can be used for any form of words, even if they are meaningless, whereas "tell" is usually only used where the words convey a message. In the sentence in post #9, "every word of love" does not constitute a message, so "told" is not really appropriate.
     
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