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UK [ˈmeɪbɪ] / US adverb

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 it right: maybe:
Don't confuse the adverb maybe (one word), which means "perhaps", with may be (two words), which means "could be":
Wrong: In an earthquake your house maybe badly damaged.
Right: In an earthquake your house may be badly damaged.
Wrong: It maybe an unfulfilled dream.
Right: It may be an unfulfilled dream.
Maybe and perhaps have the same meaning, but maybe is used mainly in spoken English and informal writing. In more formal English, perhaps is far more common: Now, maybe I haven't explained myself very well. There are, perhaps, three principles which must be followed.
a) used for showing that you are not sure whether something is true or whether something will happen

Maybe it will snow tonight and school will be cancelled.

Maybe Julie was right when she said I was jealous.

"When can you give me an answer?" "I don't know. Maybe tomorrow."

"Do you think he really loves you?" "Maybe. I'm not sure."

maybe ... maybe not:

Maybe things will improve, but then again, maybe not.

b) used when you are guessing a number or amount

The whole process takes maybe ten or fifteen minutes.

Hundreds – maybe thousands – were killed.

2) spoken used for making a suggestion when you are not sure what to do

Maybe we should call a doctor.

3) spoken used for asking someone to do something, without saying directly that you want them to do it

Maybe you could do a little job for me?

Maybe someone could explain to me what's going on around here?

4) used for saying what sometimes happens

At weekends she would drive into Oxford, do the shopping, and maybe visit a few friends.

English dictionary. 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • maybe — an 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 …   Modern English usage

  • 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

  • — Стиль этой статьи неэнциклопедичен или нарушает нормы русского языка. Статью следует исправить согласно стилистическим правилам Википедии …   Википедия

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