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Hi. I'm Gill at www.engvid.com
and today the lesson is about the
two words "may" and "might",

and I know these can be a little bit confusing
because they are connected. "May" and "might"

come from the same verb, but it's a rather
strange verb that is only used in certain

ways. So, I'm just going to give you a few
examples to show how these words are actually

used in sentences and in
different situations.

So, starting with "may", which as you know, is
also the name of a month, it can be a woman's

name, but it's also a verb. And it's used in
two main different ways. It's used to express

something that is possible, a possibility
of something happening; and it can also be

used differently to ask permission in a polite
way, to say: "May I do something?" It's more

polite than saying: "Can I" or "Could I".
"Could I" is polite, "Can I" is less polite,

but "May I" is the really nice,
polite way of asking for something.

Okay, so let's have a look first of all at
"may" used to express something possible,

a possibility. So, first of all: I've lost
my gloves. I can't find my gloves that go

on my hands. So I
say to my friend:

"Oh, I can't find my gloves."
And my friend replies:

"Do you think you may have
dropped them in the street?"

Okay. So I was walking through
the street with my friend,
we have arrived home.

"Do you think you may have dropped them in the street?
Is that possible that you dropped them somewhere?"

So, that's possibility. Okay.
And again, going out again, so in
this colder weather, my friend says:

"You'd better take a coat
- it may get cold later."

If we're going out in the
daytime, but we're going

to be out in the evening as well when it gets
colder, so: "You'd better take a coat." Good

advice. "Take a coat. It may get cold later."
It's possible it will get cold later and you'll

need to put your coat on. Okay?
And then finally for these examples of
what is possible, I say to my friend:

"Was that John who just walked by? Someone walked
by, was that John?" And my friend replies:

"It may have been.
I'm not sure."

Because my friend didn't really see.
It may have been, but I'm

not really sure. So, possibly. Possibly it
was John. I'm not 100% sure. Okay, so those

are three examples of this
first meaning of "may".

And then just two examples of asking permission
using "may" in a polite way. If I don't have

a pen, I can say to someone:
"May I borrow your pen, please?"
Okay. "To borrow" is just to have for a
short time, use it, give it back. Okay.

"May I borrow your pen, please?"
That's all very polite.
"May I", "please". Okay?

And then finally, somebody asks you a question
and it's maybe quite a complicated thing.

You can't decide. They invite you to something,
you can't decide: Yes, no, not sure. You need

to think about it.
So, you reply:

"I can't decide at the moment - may I
have a few days to think about it?"

Okay? And hopefully the other person
is willing to give you time to

think. It might be a very serious decision,
so: "May I have a few days? Give me some time

to think about it." Okay, so that's the two
main meanings for "may". We'll now move on

to look at "might".
Okay, so moving on to "might". It's similar
in a way, similar to the first meaning of

"may", meaning possible. Okay? But the feeling
with "might" is that it's a little bit less

likely to be true. It's more remote, less
possible. There's more doubt about it. Okay?

Just slightly more doubt. So let's have a
look at some examples. Okay, so I might say:

"I don't feel well." And
my friend might say:

"Oh dear - do you think it might
be something you've eaten?

Some food you've eaten. Do you
think it might be, possibly?"

With some doubt.
Maybe she cooked the dinner so she doesn't
want to think it was anything she cooked.

So: "Do you think
it might be?" Okay?

Another example, someone asks:
"Where are you going
for your holidays?"

And I might reply: "We haven't decided
yet, but we might go to Italy."

It's possible, possible, but
not definite. "We
might go to Italy."

Another example, you're waiting
for your friend to arrive, Anna.

"Anna hasn't arrived yet - do you
think she might have forgotten?"

the arrangement to meet. "Do you
think she might have forgotten?"

It's not... It's not like her to
forget, so there's a lot of doubt

there. "She might have
forgotten, but mm." Okay?

And finally, one of the buses I sometimes travel
on is a number 54. Okay? And but because I'm...

Can't see very well, if the bus is coming
from a long way away I can't see the

number until it's nearer, so I might say to
someone else waiting: "Is that a 54 bus coming?"

And they could reply:
"Mm..." They can't see the number either.
"It might be - I can't see the number yet."

So, there were four different buses,
it might be, it might be a 54, but

it could be one of three
other possible ones. Okay.

And then just one final little note about the
use of the word "may" with the word "be".

People tend to get this confused. Even English,
native English speakers don't understand this.

So, "maybe", if you say "maybe" and if you write
it as one word it means "perhaps". Again,

it's the idea of what's possible.
Perhaps. Maybe.

-"Will we go to see
a film tomorrow?"

-"Maybe. Maybe." Which means perhaps, it's
possible. But if you have a sentence which says:

"It may be raining tomorrow", that is
two words, "may", "be", two words.

"It may be raining tomorrow", so it doesn't mean
perhaps. You can't say: "It perhaps raining tomorrow."

That doesn't work in English.
Okay, so I hope that lesson about "may" and
"might" has been helpful. If you'd like to

go to the website, www.engvid.com, there is a
quiz on this subject which I hope you would like

to try. And if you've found this lesson helpful,
please subscribe to my channel on YouTube.

And so, that's all for now.
Hope to see you again soon.

Bye.
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May或Might (MAY or MIGHT?)

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列空坐 發佈於 2018 年 3 月 5 日
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