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  1. #1
    AlisonLiu is offline Newbie
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    The proper usage of ''might'', ''may'', and ''would''

    Hey guys, please tell me how to use ''might'', ''may'', and ''would'' .

  2. #2
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    Chicken Sandwich is offline Senior Member
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    Re: The proper usage of ''might'', ''may'', and ''would''


  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: The proper usage of ''might'', ''may'', and ''would''

    It's a huge question- entire books have been written on each of these verbs. Could you narrow it down a bit to get to where you have doubts?

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    TomUK is offline Member
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    Re: The proper usage of ''might'', ''may'', and ''would''

    May I suggest that you buy yourself a good grammar book, e.g. Raymond Murphy's 'English Grammar in Use'? Studying the relevant chapters might already answer your questions sufficiently, but should you require further explanations forum members would be happy to help you.

    TomUK

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    AlisonLiu is offline Newbie
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    Re: The proper usage of ''might'', ''may'', and ''would''

    Thank for all of your answers!
    I have got some information, but still have some questions.

    May and might are both ways of expressing possibility. Is there any other differences between them except the strength of possibility?
    And, someone says that we use
    may (present tense) when talking about a current situation and might (past tense) when talking about an event that happened in the past, is it correct? or they are interchangeable?
    Additionally, can would also be used to express possibility?

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: The proper usage of ''might'', ''may'', and ''would''

    With modal verbs, don't think that tense equals time- we can use past tenses to talk about the future and present tenses to talk about the past. The distinction between may have and might have is being eroded, but when talking about a past event, we can use both:

    There was a plane crash and many may have died. (= it is possible that they have died, but we don't know yet)
    I might have been killed in the accident. (= there was an accident with a risk of my dying, but I lived)

    However, this distinction is becoming less marked.

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