The lighted dial of Dudley's watch, which was dangling over the edge of the sofa on his fat wrist, told Harry he'd be eleven in ten minutes' time.

In this sentence, what is the meaning of "he'd be eleven in ten minutes' time"? Does it mean that Harry will be eleven years old after ten minutes?

  • Yes, you are right.
    – rogermue
    Commented Feb 23, 2016 at 13:36
  • You should change your title. It is not "the Harry Potter", it is "Harry Potter".
    – rogermue
    Commented Feb 23, 2016 at 17:14

2 Answers 2


You are correct. In english, we express our own or someone else's age simply by saying that a person is a number e.g. I am 34, she is 37, he will be 75 in 2 days' time, he will be 11 in 10 minutes time (it is 23:50 on the day before his birthday).

I think each language has its own method for this, as I know that in French, you say that someone has a certain number of years e.g. 'Il a 20 ans' (he has 20 years).


The narrator is talking about a future situation in the past. In the present you would use "will"

He will be eleven in ten minutes

But in the past you have to shift the tense (will) just like you shift any present tenses with their past form, thus you use would.

Here you can find more informations.

Basically yes, it means what you said.

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