[Grammar] They might have been friends since middle school.

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sky3120

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1) They have been friends since middle school.

2) They might have been friends since middle school.


I know that 'might have p.p' can be a past form of 'might be' as a guessing expression, but I think that the reason there is the 'might' in #2 is that the speaker is not sure if they have been friends since middle school.

So my question is whether 'might' can be put to express I am not 100% sure if they have been friends since middle school?

Thank you so much as always.
 

5jj

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1) They have been friends since middle school.
2) They might have been friends since middle school.
#1 states a fact; #2 states a possibility.

Equivalent forms for a present state are:

1a) They are friends.
2a) They may/might be friends.
 

sky3120

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I am really overwhelmed and shocked because I have been stuck in a huge stereotype. So the form of 'might have p.p' also can be used for not only present perfect tenses but also a past form of 'might be' as a guessing
? Did I get you right? Thank you so much.
 

5jj

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He is going there tomorrow - He may/might be going there tomorrow
.
He is in London now -He may/might be in London now.
He was drinking when it happened - He may/might have been drinking when it happened.
He has been drinking for hours - He may/might have been drinking for hours.
He went to London last year - He may/might have gone to London last year.
He has been there for ten years -He may/might have been there for ten years

 

sky3120

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Thank you for the great answer.

In a TV show, a guest said, "I want to give you a bit of insight that you might not have heard before the show.

So you think "might not have heard" is a past form of "might not be" or "might not + present perfect tense"? I think that either one is possible and meaning is not that different. What do you think, sir? Thank you so much.
 

5jj

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Thank you for the great answer.

In a TV show, a guest said, "I want to give you a bit of insight that you might not have heard before the show.

So you think "might not have heard" is a past form of "might not be" or "might not + present perfect tense"? I think that either one is possible and meaning is not that different. What do you think, sir? Thank you so much.
Might not have heard is not a past form of might not be or of might not + present perfect tense. It is a modal form followed by what is sometimes known as a perfect infinitive.

Some of the range of meanings can be seen in my last post, in which I have given sentences expressing factuality and possiblility next to each other.
 
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