- maybean adverb meaning ‘perhaps’, is such a familiar part of current standard English that it comes as a surprise to know that it fell out of use in the 19c to an extent that caused the OED to label it ‘archaic and dialect’. It has a somewhat informal air about it, admittedly, but it is used in a wide range of contexts, written and spoken, especially in AmE, and shares all the grammatical flexibility of perhaps:
• Maybe a shotgun was all he had —A. Munro, 1987
• I think maybe that's what Setanta were trying to go for —Guardian, 2007.Note that may be is spelt as two words when it is a combination of the modal verb may and the verb be: compare Maybe that's no bad thing and That may be no bad thing. Beware of mistakenly joining the words when they are used compositionally: ☒ That maybe all we can do.
Modern English usage. 2014.
Look at other dictionaries:
Maybe — May be, adv. [For it may be.] Perhaps; possibly; peradventure. [1913 Webster] Maybe the amorous count solicits her. Shak. [1913 Webster] In a liberal and, maybe, somewhat reckless way. Tylor. [1913 Webster] … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
Maybe — May be, a. Possible; probable, but not sure. [R.] [1913 Webster] Then add those maybe years thou hast to live. Driden. [1913 Webster] … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
Maybe — May be, n. Possibility; uncertainty. [R.] [1913 Webster] What they offer is mere maybe and shift. Creech. [1913 Webster] … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
maybe — (adv.) early 15c., from (it) may be; see MAY (Cf. may) (v.1) + BE (Cf. be) (v.). Still sometimes written as two words early 19c … Etymology dictionary
maybe — [adv] possibly as it may be, can be, conceivable, conceivably, could be, credible, feasible, imaginably, it could be, might be, obtainable, perchance, perhaps, weather permitting; concept 552 Ant. certainly, definitely, surely … New thesaurus
maybe — ► ADVERB ▪ perhaps; possibly … English terms dictionary
maybe — [mā′bē] adv. [ME (for it may be)] perhaps … English World dictionary
Maybe — Perchance redirects here. For the phrase with the word, see To be, or not to be. Maybe may refer to: Music Maybe, a song written in 1926 by George and Ira Gershwin, from the musical Oh, Kay! Maybe (1935 song), a 1935 song by Allan Flynn and Frank … Wikipedia
Maybe.ru — Стиль этой статьи неэнциклопедичен или нарушает нормы русского языка. Статью следует исправить согласно стилистическим правилам Википедии … Википедия
maybe */*/*/ — UK [ˈmeɪbɪ] / US adverb Summary: Maybe can be used in the following ways: as a sentence adverb, making a comment on the whole sentence or clause: Maybe I ll come too. as an ordinary adverb (before a number): There were maybe 15 people there. Get… … English dictionary