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futuro hipotético -> I wonder (will / would / might)

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by Little Chandler, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. Little Chandler

    Little Chandler Senior Member

    La Coruña
    español (ESP)
    Hi everyone,

    I usually have trouble translating sentences including the "futuro hipotético" into english. I'll give some examples to illustrate the question:

    1) No lo veo por ningún lado. ¿Dónde estará?
    2) Este sitio no me suena. ¿No nos habremos perdido?
    3) Lleva dos horas al teléfono. ¿Con quién hablará?
    4) ¿Quién lo habrá robado? ¿Habrá sido uno de tus amigos?

    When I'm speaking English I tend to use "I wonder" because I think it's the safe choice, but I have the (probably wrong) impression that I've heard native English speakers convey this idea by using "would" or "might" (or even "will").

    1) Where will / would / might it be?
    2) Won't / Wouldn't / Mightn't we have got(ten) lost?
    3) Who will / would / might he be speaking to?
    4) Who will / would / might have stolen it? Will / Would / Might it have been one of your friends?

    Most of them sound quite odd to me, but just wondering...

    Any comments would be welcome.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. plsdeluno Senior Member

    England
    English-England
    I would say,
    1.Where will it be?
    2.We will have got lost. We must be lost. We must have got lost.
    3.Who will she be speaking to?
    4.Who would have stolen it? It will have been one of your friends.

    Lets see what others may think.
     
  3. flyingcabbage Senior Member

    Dublin, Ireland
    English - Ireland
    Yo normalmente lo traduzco con "could" o "can". Aunque éstes son de tiempos diferentes (presente y condicional) se puede utilizar los dos, porque hablamos de situaciones hipotéticas. Sería como re-escribir las frases con "poder" en español. (¿Dónde estará? - ¿Dónde puede estar? ¿Dónde podría estar?)

    Para mi, el futuro suena un poco raro cuando se trata de preguntas.
    Yo los traduciría así:
    1) No lo veo por ningún lado. ¿Dónde estará? I don't see it anywhere. Where can/could it be?!2) Este sitio no me suena. ¿No nos habremos perdido? This place doesn't look familiar. Could we be lost?/Are we lost?3) Lleva dos horas al teléfono. ¿Con quién hablará? She's been on the phone for two hours. Who could she be speaking to?!4) ¿Quién lo habrá robado? ¿Habrá sido uno de tus amigos? Who could have stolen it? Could it have been one of your friends?

    Usaría el futuro, a lo mejor, si no fuera una pregunta.
    eg.
    A "She said she would be home by 5, why isn't she here?!"
    B: "Don't worry, she will just have gone to the shop. No doubt she'll be home soon"
     
  4. Little Chandler

    Little Chandler Senior Member

    La Coruña
    español (ESP)
    Muchas gracias. Vuestra ayuda es un verdadero lujo.

    I have the feeling it's going to be hard for me to understand, but... :) Could you please (try to) explain why "will" in sentence 3 and "would" in sentence 4 when it's almost the same structure?

    En este último caso, ¿sería lo mismo que utilizar "must"? ¿O quizás implica menos probabilidad?
    She will just have gone to the shop = She must have gone to the shop ??

    Ya veo que es terreno pantanoso, cuando entre hablantes nativos lo veis de manera algo distinta.


    Mil gracias de nuevo.
     
  5. plsdeluno Senior Member

    England
    English-England
    I would say that for me, ''She must have gone to the shop'', and ''she will have gone to the shop''. mean the same thing, maybe it depends on where someone is from, but I personally would use ''she must have gone to the shop''
     
  6. BrooklynBoy

    BrooklynBoy Senior Member

    English - Nueva York
    3.Who will she be speaking to?
    4.Who would have stolen it?
    I have the feeling it's going to be hard for me to understand, but... :) Could you please (try to) explain why "will" in sentence 3 and "would" in sentence 4 when it's almost the same structure?

    Estoy de acuerdo con el col volador: el futuro ("will") no sirve. Tampoco, en general, "would". En esto dos casos, así como los otros mencionados, "could" lleva el sentido justo. "would" será correcto en unos casos, como por ejemplo: ¿Quién será [a la puerta]? "Who would that be?" o "Who could that be"? Ambos correctos.
     
  7. plsdeluno Senior Member

    England
    English-England
    For me there are many different ways to express the same thing.

    ''It is 1.30 in the morning and your mothers been on the phone for an hour'' ''who will she be talking to at this hour?'' sounds fine to me, it may or may not be grammatically correct, I have no idea, but I use it.
     
  8. L'Inconnu Senior Member

    US
    English
    'Wonder' works for me in just about every case. 'Might' also works for me, but it sounds a bit British if the thought is pitched as a question. I rarely, if ever, use 'will' and 'would', but I do understand them.

    1) No lo veo por ningún lado. ¿Dónde estará?
    Where will :confused: / would :confused:/ might it be?:tick:

    I prefer 'Where could it be?'
    Even more natural is an indirect question. 'I wonder where it is.' 'I wonder where it could be.'

    2) Este sitio no me suena. ¿No nos habremos perdido?
    Won't / Wouldn't / Mightn't we have got lost?

    'Could we have got(ten) lost?'
    'We might/could have got(ten) lost'.
    'I wonder if we got lost'.

    3) Lleva dos horas al teléfono. ¿Con quién hablará?
    Who will / would / might he be speaking to?

    'Who could he be talking to?
    ''I wonder who he's talking to.'

    4) ¿Quién lo habrá robado? ¿Habrá sido uno de tus amigos?
    Who will / would / might have stolen it?

    'Who could have stolen it?'
    'I wonder who could have stolen it.'
    'I wonder who stole it.'

    Will / Would / Might it have been one of your friends?

    'Could it have been one of your friends?'
    'It might/could have been one of your friends.'
    'I wonder if it was one of your friends.'

    I prefer 'could' instead of 'might' for either direct questions, or indirect ones with the word 'wonder'. For affirmative suppositons, I use either 'might' or 'could'. ' Indirect questions or direct suppositions are more natural to me than straight questions. Finally, me parecen muy raro 'Will' and 'Would' .
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2013
  9. Little Chandler

    Little Chandler Senior Member

    La Coruña
    español (ESP)
    Ok. That's a great explanation!

    I was thinking about "will", "would" and "might" but I forgot about "could" which seems to be the best option.

    Thanks plsdeluno, flyingcabbage, brooklynboy and L'Inconnu. :thumbsup:
     
  10. plsdeluno Senior Member

    England
    English-England
    Very well explained by L'Inconnu. I just wanted to add something. ''must have'' it is used a lot here.

    Where is your sister? 'She must have gone to the beach. Debe de haber ido a la playa. Estará en la playa.

    What time is it? I am not sure, it must be at least 2 o' clock. Deben de ser las 2. Serán las 2.
     
  11. horsewishr

    horsewishr Senior Member

    Michigan (USA)
    English (Generic Midwest Variety)
    1) No lo veo por ningún lado. ¿Dónde estará?
    2) Este sitio no me suena. ¿No nos habremos perdido?
    3) Lleva dos horas al teléfono. ¿Con quién hablará?
    4) ¿Quién lo habrá robado? ¿Habrá sido uno de tus amigos?


    1) Where will / would / might it be? Where could it be?
    2) Won't / Wouldn't / Mightn't we have got(ten) lost? Do you think/suppose we're lost?
    3) Who will / would / might he be speaking to? Who could she be talking to?
    4) Who will / would / might have stolen it? Will / Would / Might it have been one of your friends? Who could have stolen it? Could it have been one or your friends?


    In my part of the US (midwest), we would never use "will" in this context.
     

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