빈 손으로 왔겠어?

This example contains he past (았) and future (겠) in the same verb form.

In the past I've heard this used for supposition. I could understand this as a statement - meaning someone 'must have' or 'would probably have' come empty handed.

But what does it mean when used in a question in this way? (she doesn't seem to be empty-handed...)

  • 1
    -겠-” is versatile, as well as “would” is. Implying the future tense is only one of its several usages. – K._ Nov 5 at 12:15

Just like English "will" or "would", -겠- frequently means assumption:

좀 있으면 비 오겠다 = It may rain soon.

아까 그 기차 탔으면 벌써 도착했겠다. = If we had taken the train, we would have arrived by now.

So, "빈손으로 왔겠다" would mean "[He] would have come empty-handed."

Now, the tricky part: "내가 빈손으로 왔겠어?" would be "would I have come empty-handed?"

It works basically in the same way in Korean as in English, in that it questions the assumption of the listener:

Do you think I would have come empty-handed?

Also, 설마 is used to indicate "there's no chance" and makes sure that the whole question is understood as rhetorical (instead of a genuine question). So, "설마 내가 빈손으로 왔겠어?" is something like:

Come on, you don't think I would have come empty-handed, do you?

1) 지금쯤 지혜는 부산에 도착했을거야 (추측 = guess )

Now, she may be in Pusan.

2) 지금쯤 지혜는 부산에 도착했겠네. (했 => 추측, 겠 => possibility in future tense)

That is, if we have some calculation or a clue about arriving, then we use 겠. So we do not recommend that we would use 겠 frequently (since our opinion may be wrong).

3) 빈손으로 왔겠어 ?

Do you have a possibility that I came here with no present ? (Definitely, there is a present)

얘기 하자고, 만났겠니 ?

Definitely, I want activities beyond talking.

@ 들어가도 좋겠습니까 ? Do you allow that I would go into ?

@ http://dic.daum.net/word/view.do?wordid=kkw000011963&supid=kku000016413

  • 4
    Perhaps the natural translation is "Would I have come empty handed?" – topo morto Oct 27 at 14:21
  • Would I have come empty handed = 빈손으로 왔어야 했지 ? = Next, I will not prepare present. In my thought, it is natural. – HK Lee Oct 27 at 14:34

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