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Son to his parents: Someone called after you left but didn’t leave a message.

Husband to wife: Would that have been Jeff?
Wife: No, that would’ve been Kathy. She was supposed to call me.

(Context is his parents left leaving their son at home and somebody calls and the son picks up the phone.)


Is this conversation correct with would’ve? Aren’t they would of probability? Thank you.

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EverestCTSIs this conversation correct with would’ve?

Yes.

EverestCTSAren’t they would of probability?

Yes. They are among the typical examples of the would of probability that every grammar textbook and website mentions. You can't get a better example of the would of probability.

CJ

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CalifJim
EverestCTSIs this conversation correct with would’ve?

Yes.

EverestCTSAren’t they would of probability?

Yes. They are among the typical examples of the would of probability that every grammar textbook and website mentions. You can't get a better example of the would of probability.

CJ

Thank you CJ. Is the “would’ve” in question would of probability too, basically all of them?

EverestCTSbasically all of them?

Right. All the woulds in your post are woulds of probability.

CJ

CalifJim
EverestCTSbasically all of them?

Right. All the woulds in your post are woulds of probability.

CJ

Thank you very much for the help, CJ. One more example, CJ.

Jeff: Who put that $100 bill on my desk?

Dan: Jack is the only person who would have or could have done it.

I often here “would have” used this way. Is this would of probability or hypothetical?

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EverestCTSIs this would of probability or hypothetical?

probability

(I don't see any hypothesis.)

CJ

CalifJim
EverestCTSIs this would of probability or hypothetical?

probability

(I don't see any hypothesis.)

CJ

Thank you very much, CJ. Your help means a lot to me. I haven’t got a sentence checked with would of probability with an adjective. Here it is. Please check it.

Jeff: I heard that your late grandfather lived in Brazil when he was young.
Dan: Yes, he did.
Jeff: Do you know how he felt then? Was he happy?

Dan: I am not sure. He told nothing about it, but I have a photo of him smiling when he was in Brazil. He would have been happy then.

Also,

Can I also use “would” for complete speculation with very less knowledge about it? For eg.

(the context is that Jeff was sentenced for 5 years in prison in 2005. Jeff, Dan, and Jack used to be friends but Dan and Jack cut ties with him soon after he went to prison. Dan and Jack are having the following conversation in 2022)

Dan: Where do you Jeff went after getting out of prison in 2010?
Jack: He would’ve gone back home. Then he would’ve looked for a job. He would probably be around the same place that he used to live right now.

EverestCTSI have a photo of him smiling when he was in Brazil. He would have been happy then.

Yes. would of probability.

EverestCTSCan I also use “would” for complete speculation with very less little knowledge about it?

Yes.

EverestCTSHe would’ve gone back home. Then he would’ve looked for a job. He would probably be around the same place that he used to live right now.

Yes. would of probability.

CJ

By the way, you could also call these "the would of supposition" because in every case you are supposing something to be true even though you have no direct evidence that it's true. Also "the would of conjecture". You can make up any kind of description you like if it helps you understand.

CJ

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Thank you, CJ. I am completely clear on would of probability now.

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