Might
May May (m[=a]), v. [imp. {Might} (m[imac]t)] [AS. pres. m[ae]g I am able, pret. meahte, mihte; akin to D. mogen, G. m["o]gen, OHG. mugan, magan, Icel. mega, Goth. magan, Russ. moche. [root]103. Cf. {Dismay}, {Main} strength, {Might}. The old imp. mought is obsolete, except as a provincial word.] An auxiliary verb qualifying the meaning of another verb, by expressing: (a) Ability, competency, or possibility; -- now oftener expressed by {can}. [1913 Webster]

How may a man, said he, with idle speech, Be won to spoil the castle of his health! --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

For what he [the king] may do is of two kinds; what he may do as just, and what he may do as possible. --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

For of all sad words of tongue or pen The saddest are these: ``It might have been.'' --Whittier. [1913 Webster] (b) Liberty; permission; allowance. [1913 Webster]

Thou mayst be no longer steward. --Luke xvi. 2. [1913 Webster] (c) Contingency or liability; possibility or probability. [1913 Webster]

Though what he learns he speaks, and may advance Some general maxims, or be right by chance. --Pope. [1913 Webster] (d) Modesty, courtesy, or concession, or a desire to soften a question or remark. [1913 Webster]

How old may Phillis be, you ask. --Prior. [1913 Webster] (e) Desire or wish, as in prayer, imprecation, benediction, and the like. ``May you live happily.'' --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

{May be}, & {It may be}, are used as equivalent to {possibly}, {perhaps}, {maybe}, {by chance}, {peradventure}. See 1st {Maybe}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • Might — Might, n. [AS. meaht, miht, from the root of magan to be able, E. may; akin to D. magt, OS. maht, G. macht, Icel. m[=a]ttr, Goth. mahts. [root]103. See {May}, v.] Force or power of any kind, whether of body or mind; energy or intensity of purpose …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Might — may refer to: Might, an English auxiliary verb, a verb whose function it is to give further semantic or syntactic information about the main or full verb which follows it Might , a song by Modest Mouse from their 1996 album This Is a Long Drive… …   Wikipedia

  • Might! — Studio album by NON Released 1995 Genre Noise Industrial Label …   Wikipedia

  • might — Ⅰ. might [1] ► MODAL VERB (3rd sing. present might) past of MAY(Cf. ↑may). 1) used to express possibility or make a suggestion. 2) used politely or tentatively in questions and requests. Ⅱ. might …   English terms dictionary

  • might — might1 [mīt] v.aux. [ME mihte < OE, akin to Ger möchte] 1. pt. of MAY1 2. used as a modal auxiliary in verbal phrases with present or future time reference, generally equivalent to MAY1 in meaning and use, with the following functions: a)… …   English World dictionary

  • Might — (m[imac]t), imp. of {May}. [AS. meahte, mihte.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • might — I noun authoritativeness, brawn, durability, efficacy, energy, force, greatness, influence, intensity, main force, mightiness, muscle, potency, potential, powerfulness, prowess, puissance, robustness, severity, sinew, strength, sturdiness,… …   Law dictionary

  • might — n strength, energy, *power, force, puissance Analogous words: vigorousness or vigor, strenuousness, energeticness, lustiness (see corresponding adjectives at VIGOROUS): potency, powerfulness, forcibleness, forcefulness (see corresponding… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • might — [n] ability, power adequacy, arm, authority, capability, capacity, clout, command, competence, control, domination, efficacy, efficiency, energy, force, forcefulness, forcibleness, get up and go*, jurisdiction, lustiness, mastery, moxie*, muscle* …   New thesaurus

  • might — might1 [ maıt ] modal verb *** Might is usually followed by an infinitive without to : I might change my mind. Sometimes might is used without a following infinitive: I don t think we ll need any more help, but we might. Might does not change its …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • might — I [[t]maɪt[/t]] MODAL USES ♦ (Might is a modal verb. It is used with the base form of a verb.) 1) MODAL (vagueness) You use might to indicate that something will possibly happen or be true in the future, but you cannot be certain. There s a… …   English dictionary

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