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    • Join Date: Aug 2009
    • Posts: 91


    what is the difference between "perhaps" "maybe" "probably" and "likely"?

  1. #2

    Re: "perhaps"

    Quote Originally Posted by kelvin123 View Post
    what is the difference between "perhaps" "maybe" "probably" and "likely"?
    All four are generally used in the context of expectation of an event

    Perhaps and maybe denote a degree of uncertainty and are used when the speaker has some reservations of occurrence of the event.

    Maybe is also used as a form of politeness when instructing another to carry out a task. Perhaps is also used with an afterthought after the event has occurred

    On the other hand 'probably' and likely'' indicate a degree of certainty.

    Perhaps it may rain today
    ( not sure)


    It will probably rain today
    (more sure)

    It is likely to rain today
    ( more sure)

    Maybe it will rain today
    ( not so sure)
    See this one
    Maybe, you should carry an umbrella
    ( I suggest you carry an umbrella !)

    And this one

    Perhaps, we should have turned the other way

    English usage is generally about what sounds best or is most appropriate


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