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Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #111019: Tell or Say
Tell or Say
We use 'say' to speak in general about something that is said by someone.
You say something to someone.
Examples: My father said he had a wonderful time with his friends.
Their mother often says they should wash their hands before lunch.
We use 'tell' to mean that someone has instructed or informed someone else of something.
You tell someone something.
Tell (someone) a story
Tell (someone) a lie
Tell (someone) the truth
Tell the future
Tell the time
Tell a joke
Examples: Her mother told her to wash the dishes.
My friend told me about her first meeting with her boyfriend.
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