I’m sure Dumbledore <will have> thought of this

Nowledge

New Member
Polish
Hi,
I've been reading Harry Potter recently and in one of the books Hermione utters such sentence "“I’m sure Dumbledore will have thought of this". Why does she use Future Perfect tense here? I need to admit that even though my grammar is quite good I would say, I still struggle when it comes to Future Perfect as hardly ever is it used.

I'm guessing she wanted to say something like "I'm sure Dumbledore would think of it" or am I getting it wrong?
 
  • User With No Name

    Senior Member
    English (U.S. - Texas)
    The idea is that "I'm sure Dumbledore has thought of this." (The use of the future perfect implies a measure of uncertainty. As @grassy says, it's not a reference to the future.)

    As an aside, I don't think this "speculative" use of the future perfect is common in U.S. English. It sounds veddy British to me.
     

    Nowledge

    New Member
    Polish
    Wow, I'm really surprise as I'd never met with such use of Future Perfect as you describe. I thought it always referred to the Future.
     

    Szkot

    Senior Member
    British English
    The British Council Learn English website has this use of will have:

    ...
    or looking back from the present:
    Look at the time. The match will have started.
    It's half past five. Dad will have finished work by now.
     

    Nowledge

    New Member
    Polish
    Thank you so much for the link. It explains a lot yet I guess such use of Future Tense is rare in "casual" English, am I right?

    In fact, thank you all for your replies! I really appreciate that!
     

    Ponyprof

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    Thank you so much for the link. It explains a lot yet I guess such use of Future Tense is rare in "casual" English, am I right?

    In fact, thank you all for your replies! I really appreciate that!

    Not really rare.

    I'm sure she'll have remembered to get gas. I'm sure she'll have forgotten everything I said. Etc.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    It has its place. It's a succinct way to say it when you mean it. I really don't have a sense if it's more British or not.
     

    Szkot

    Senior Member
    British English
    The popular stereotype is:

    In Glasgow they ask you [hospitably] if you would like your tea - in Edinburgh they say, 'You'll have had your tea, [so I don't have to offer you any].'

    It is not saying they know you have had your tea, rather that they assume you have.
     
    Top