Use of May and Might

Use of May and Might

Expressing the Possibility

When the possibility of happening the things are more than we use May in sentences. But if the possibility is less then we use Might in sentences.For instance,

  • I think he may come late today.
  • I think he might come late today.

In the first sentence, the chances of arrival are more. However, in the second sentence, the chances of his arrival are less. To get a clear idea suppose someone is talking to you and says the sky is looking cloudy. Now how will you respond to this? Here you will say I think it may rain. In this sentence may is used because the other person is sure that the sky is cloudy and surely the right will happen. So the possibility of happening rain is high so we use May in the sentence. Also, go through the below examples.

May (Possibility is More) Might (Possibility is Less)
He may lose his job.

We may go on a Vacation.

I May buy a car.

We may go to the market today.

I may start a business soon.

He might lose his job if he’s always late.

We might go on a Vacation if I get a leave.

If my loan gets sanctioned, I might buy a car.

We might go to the market today.

I might go and settle in Canada someday.

To Give or Take Permissions

With I and We may is used. To illustrate have a look at the below sentences.

  • May I come in sir?
  • May I go to the restroom?
  • May I talk with you for 2 minutes?
  • May I take your copy?
  • May I use your mobile?
  • You may go now.
  • May I use the printer? Yes, you might.

Use of May in Optative Sentences

In optative sentences, a wish or prayer for someone known or unknown and a wish for better luck are expressed. During the expression of wish or desire, we use may. Additionally, the sentences in which he, she or third persons are used as subjects we use May.

  • May you live long.
  • May god bless you.
  • May my brother pass with good marks .
  • May he pass.
  • May you all learn English.
  • May you all speak English.

While Giving Advice

  • I think she might not be the right partner for you.
  • I think it might be rain today.

Use of Might in Indirect Sentences

Indirect Speech: He said, “It may rain today.
Direct Speech: He said that it might rain that day.
Indirect Speech: I may go to London.
Direct Speech: He said he might go to London.
Indirect Speech: She said,” It may be too costly.
Direct Speech: She said that it might be too costly.

May and Might in Passive Sentences

Rule : Object+ May/Might be+V3+by+Subject

Active: They may invite us.
Passive: We may be invited by them.
Active: Police might arrest him.
Passive: He might be arrested by the police.
Active: I may not buy this mobile.
Passive: This mobile may not be bought by me.
Active: We may celebrate your birthday.
Passive: Your birthday may be celebrated by us.
Active: Ram might play football.
Passive: Football might be played by Ram.

Past Tense of might

Rule: Subject +Modal +have+Object

Might is used in the sentences in which 3rd form of a verb is used. In general, in past events sentences might is used. You can also use may have in past sentences but it is optional. Although “might” is not the past tense of “may,” it is still the best word to describe something that happened in the past.

  • He may have time.
  • He asked if he might borrow the pen.
  • I thought I might go to the game.
  • You may have a bag.
  • He might have eaten the cake.
  • You may have information about it.
  • You might have information about it.
  • I might have missed the job interview.
  • If Ben Stokes had not hit a century. England might have lost the match.

Rule: Subject +Modal +have+V3+Object

  • You may have money.
  • You may have earned money.
  • You may have pitted him that’s why he is crying.
  • He might have helped you.
  • He might come here.
  • I might have to go to Texas.
  • He might have created indiscipline if the teacher had not expelled him from the class.

Read Also: Use of Can And Could

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