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  1. mamen's Avatar
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    #1

    may vs. might

    What is the deference between the sentences?

    She might help you.
    and
    She may help you.

    He may not....
    and
    He might not....

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by mamen View Post
    What is the deference between the sentences?

    She might help you.
    and
    She may help you.

    He may not....
    and
    He might not....
    What is your understanding of the differences, mamen?
    Knowing this will give us all a better idea of how to reply without going into excessive theoretical detail about modality.

  3. mamen's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    What is your understanding of the differences, mamen?
    Knowing this will give us all a better idea of how to reply without going into excessive theoretical detail about modality.
    Difference= their difference on what they imply.


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    #4

    Smile Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by mamen View Post
    What is the deference between the sentences?

    She might help you.
    and
    She may help you.

    He may not....
    and
    He might not....

    The modal auxiliary "might" expresses a weaker possibility than "may".

    Used to indicate a possibility or probability that is weaker than may: We might discover a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

    If you have any further questions about this, I'll gladly reply.


  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by PROESL View Post
    The modal auxiliary "might" expresses a weaker possibility than "may".

    Used to indicate a possibility or probability that is weaker than may: We might discover a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

    If you have any further questions about this, I'll gladly reply.

    I completely disagree. The probability of might and may are the same.
    Perhaps it's different in the US.
    If I tell you "I might go to the party", you are just as likely to find me there as if I say "I may go to the party".
    In fact, I'd use "might" for all cases in contexts like this.
    Last edited by Raymott; 22-Jul-2009 at 16:27.

  5. Raymott's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by mamen View Post
    Difference= their difference on what they imply.
    I didn't mean your understanding of the word "differences", mamen.
    I meant your understanding of the the differences between the sentences you wrote. I am asking for some input from you - that is, What is your current understanding of the implications of "She might help you" and "She may help you".

  6. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by mamen View Post
    What is the deference between the sentences?

    She might help you.
    and
    She may help you.

    He may not....
    and
    He might not....
    From the point of view of possibility, I agree with Raymott, they are the same.

    'She may help you' could also mean that she hs permission to help you, she is allowed to.
    'He may not...' could mean that he doesn't have permission, he is not allowed to.


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    #8

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    I completely disagree. The probability of might and may are the same.
    Perhaps it's different in the US.
    If I tell you "I might go to the party", you are just as likely to find me there as if I say "I may go to the party".
    In fact, I'd use "might" for all cases in contexts like this.
    I understand what you mean, and I hear where you're coming from. Needless to say, I have found this on other occasions, as well, to be a distinction that not all recognize. Nonetheless, I consider it a valid and useful distinction, as do others.

    I would like to say that I feel this distinction is, in part, validated by the fact that we can use "might" to politely ask permission or make a request. However, we would not answer with "might" because "might" is weaker.

    Might I, please, impose upon you to do me a favor? Yes, you may. But not, "yes, you might".

    "Logcial, Captain. There is a parallel relationship between "can" and "could".

    "Yes, very logical indeed. Thank you, Mr. Spock. Could we, please, talk about this further when we return to the ship?"

    "Yes, we can, Captain."

    "Two to beam up, Mr. Scott."

    Spock out.



  7. Raymott's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by PROESL View Post
    I understand what you mean, and I hear where you're coming from. Needless to say, I have found this on other occasions, as well, to be a distinction that not all recognize. Nonetheless, I consider it a valid and useful distinction, as do others.
    You might be interested in perusing this recent thread.
    https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/a...must-have.html


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    #10

    Smile Re: may vs. might

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    You might be interested in perusing this recent thread.
    https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/a...must-have.html
    I'll have to admit it's a possibility. However, I'm quite confident in my presentation of this topic.


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