Quick Answer: Can Vs May Grammar?

What is the difference between may and might?

The grammatical distinction between the two words is tense-based—may is the present tense and might the past tense..

Can I ask you or may I ask you?

May I ask you a question? Asking for permission. In addition, “may” version is more polite than the “can” version. Realistically speaking, both ask for permission and neither is offensive, but yes, “may” is still more polite than “can.”

Where do we use may?

Uses of May and MightPermission.May is used to express permission. May not is used to deny permission.Notes.Possibility.May is also used to express possibility.May is also used in expressing a wish.May is used in subordinate clauses that express a purpose.Might.More items…•

Can could may might use?

Can Could May Might MustCan. Can – for ability. I can dance Tango. … Could. Could – past ability. I could run ten kilometres when I was younger. … May. May – for formal permission. May I come in? … Might. Might – for possibility. The electrician might be finished by tomorrow. … Must. Must – to express a formal request or necessity.

How do you use may in a sentence?

May sentence examples”May I sit with you?” she asked shyly. 2K. … May we come in? 927. … Do you think they may have given up? 807. … They may be too busy running. 656. … “You may buy something, if you wish,” said his mother. 561. … You may follow me. 458. … You may do as you wish. 329. … “You may choose any subject that you like best,” said the teacher. 313.More items…

Can I ask you something answer?

What’s the most polite way to answer “can I ask you a question?” If you’re willing to hear them out, then “Yes, you may” is polite, formal and grammatically correct. You are not obligated to answer their question if you don’t want to. You said you’d listen, not that you’d reveal private information.

What mean May?

1a —used to indicate possibility or probabilityyou may be rightthings you may need —sometimes used interchangeably with canone of those slipups that may happen from time to time— Jessica Mitford —sometimes used where might would be expectedyou may think from a little distance that the country was solid woods— Robert …

Can could Would grammar?

Can, like could and would, is used to ask a polite question, but can is only used to ask permission to do or say something (“Can I borrow your car?” “Can I get you something to drink?”). Could is the past tense of can, but it also has uses apart from that–and that is where the confusion lies.

Can I or may I Which is correct?

Which do you think is correct? If you use “Can I…” you are literally asking if you have the ability to pick the book up from the person’s hands, walk away with it, and return it later. If you use “May I…” then you are asking permission to use the book and bring it back at a later time.

Can could may grammar?

When we talk about possibility, we use can, could and may, but they are different in meaning. It can be dangerous to cycle in the city. This expresses what the speaker believes is a general truth or known fact, or a strong possibility. It could/may be dangerous to cycle in the city.

What kind of word is May?

language note: May is a modal verb. It is used with the base form of a verb. You use may to indicate that something will possibly happen or be true in the future, but you cannot be certain.

Can we use might for future?

There is no past tense but might have, followed by a past participle, is used for talking about past possibilities: The explosion might have been caused by a gas leak. … There is no future tense, but might is used for talking about future possibilities: It might rain tomorrow.

How do you use if I may ask?

Sentence examples for if I may ask from inspiring English sources”How, if I may ask?” “Subway-car door. … “If I may ask, what is the purpose of this?” he said of the prosecutor’s approach. … “What is his profession, if I may ask?” “No, I mean he’s gone,” the girl said.More items…