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Frage:
Are both versions okay?  
von Carl01, 2011-11-16, 21:55  like dislike  Spam?  84.134.78....
He (has) told me that he will call me back.

Should I rather use PP because the situation is still open?`- He hasn't called yet.
Or could it also be SP when I have in mind that he told me this at a certain point in the past? - (yesterday) he told me that .....

Thanks!
Antwort: 
possibly  #628502
von romy (CZ/GB), 2011-11-16, 22:13  like dislike  Spam?  
I would always rather tend to Simple Past in connection with "told", unless you want to stress it particularly:
"I must stay at home, because I am waiting for his call." - "Perhaps he won't call at all." - "Oh no, he certainly will! I have just spoken to him. He has told me less than five minutes ago that he will call me back. He has promised to do so within an hour." - "But last week he told you the same, and he didn't call again until today."
Antwort: 
Sequence of tenses in indirect speech.  #628520
von wandle (GB), Last modified: 2011-11-17, 00:06  like dislike  Spam?  
After a main verb in the simple past tense, the subordinate verb must also be in a past tense.

Two correct options exist:
(a)  He told me that he would call me back.
(b)  He has told me that he will call me back.

In (a), the whole story is in the past.  The time when he was due to call back has now gone by.
Thus you can say, 'He told me that he would call me back, but he did not do so'.

In (b), the time for the call back has not yet arrived.  
Thus you can say, 'He has told me that he will call me back, and I trust him to do so'.

'He told me that he will call me back' is incorrect, both because it breaks the sequence of tenses and because it is illogical.
Antwort: 
von wandle (GB), Last modified: 2011-11-17, 01:06  like dislike  Spam?  
 #628523
Correction and amplification:

The above comments on sentence (a) are over-simplified.
(a) can also be used before the time for the call back has arrived, e.g.:
'He told me yesterday that he would call me back, and I still trust him to do so.'
Antwort: 
A small correction to romy's conversation -  #628542
von Lllama (GB/AT), 2011-11-17, 07:14  like dislike  Spam?  
He has told me less than five minutes ago that he will call me back should be either:
He told me less than five minutes ago that he will call me back.
or:
He has just told me that he will call me back.
Antwort: 
He told me less than five minutes ago that he would call me back. (The whole thing is over, past and done with.)  #628587
von Proteus, 2011-11-17, 12:23  like dislike  Spam?  194.166.5....

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