may

See also: May, mAy, maý, mày, máy, mây, mãy, and mấy

English

Wikipedia-logo.png
 May (disambiguation) on Wikipedia

Pronunciation

Etymology 1

From Middle English mowen, mayen, moȝen, maȝen, from Old English magan, from Proto-Germanic *maganą, from Proto-Indo-European *megʰ-. Cognate with Dutch mag (may, first and third-person singular of mogen (to be able to, be allowed to, may)), Low German mögen, German mag (like, first and third-person singular of mögen (to like, want, require)), Swedish , Icelandic mega, megum. See also might.

Verb

may (third-person singular simple present may, present participle -, simple past might, past participle - or (obsolete) mought)

  1. (obsolete, intransitive) To be strong; to have power (over). [8th–17th c.]
  2. (obsolete, auxiliary) To be able; can. [8th–17th c.]
  3. (intransitive, poetic) To be able to go. [from 9th c.]
    • Lua error in Module:quote at line 165: The first parameter (language code) is missing.
      O weary night, O long and tedious night, / Abate thy houres, shine comforts from the East, / That I may backe to Athens by day-light […].
  4. (modal auxiliary verb, defective) To have permission to, be allowed. Used in granting permission and in questions to make polite requests. [from 9th c.]
    you may smoke outside;  may I sit there?
    Synonyms: can, could, might
  5. (modal auxiliary verb, defective) Expressing a present possibility; possibly. [from 13th c.]
    he may be lying;  Schrödinger's cat may or may not be in the box
    • Lua error in Module:quote at line 165: The first parameter (language code) is missing.
      The result may not quite give the Wearsiders a sweet ending to what has been a sour week, following allegations of sexual assault and drug possession against defender Titus Bramble, but it does at least demonstrate that their spirit remains strong in the face of adversity.
    • Template:quote-magazine
    Synonyms: could, might
  6. (subjunctive present, defective) Expressing a wish (with present subjunctive effect). [from 16th c.]
    may you win;  may the weather be sunny
    • Lua error in Module:quote at line 165: The first parameter (language code) is missing.
      May God bless and keep you always / May your wishes all come true / May you always do for others / And let others do for you / May you build a ladder to the stars / And climb on every rung / May you stay forever young
    • Lua error in Module:quote at line 165: The first parameter (language code) is missing.
      May I never miss the thrill of being near you
    Synonym: might
  7. Used in modesty, courtesy, or concession, or to soften a question or remark.
    • Lua error in Module:quote at line 165: The first parameter (language code) is missing.
      How old may Phillis be, you ask.
Usage notes
  • May is now a defective verb. It has no infinitive, no past participle, and no future tense. Forms of to be allowed to are used to replace these missing tenses.
  • The simple past (both indicative and subjunctive) of may is might
  • The present tense is negated as may not, which can be contracted to mayn't, although this is old-fashioned; the simple past is negated as might not, which can be contracted to mightn't.
  • May has archaic second-person singular present indicative forms mayest and mayst.
  • Traditionalists insist that one should distinguish between may (present tense) and might (past tense) in expressing possibility.
  • Wishes are often cast in the imperative rather than the subjunctive mood, not using the word may, as in Have a great day! rather than May you have a great day.
Derived terms
Translations
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See also

Etymology 2

French mai, so called because it blossoms in May.

Noun

may (plural mays)

  1. The hawthorn bush or its blossoms.
Derived terms
  • Italian may
  • mayhaw(Please check if this is already defined at target. Replace {{vern}} with a regular link if already defined. Add novern=1 if not defined.)
Translations

Verb

may (third-person singular simple present mays, present participle maying, simple past and past participle mayed)

  1. (poetic) To gather may, or flowers in general.
    • Lua error in Module:quote at line 165: The first parameter (language code) is missing.
      In valleys green and still / Where lovers wander maying
  2. (poetic) To celebrate May Day.

Etymology 3

Shortening of maid, which is a shortening of maiden.

Noun

may

  1. (archaic) maiden

Anagrams


Azerbaijani

Noun

may (definite accusative mayı, plural maylar)

  1. May

Declension

See also


Crimean Tatar

Noun

may

  1. butter, oil

Declension

Synonyms


Interlingue

Noun

may (plural mayes)

  1. May, the fifth month of the Gregorian calendar.

Kalasha

Determiner

may

  1. my

Pronoun

may

  1. me

Kurdish

Noun

may m

  1. intervention

Derived terms


Mapudungun

Adverb

may (using Raguileo Alphabet)

  1. yes

References

  • Wixaleyiñ: Mapucezugun-wigkazugun pici hemvlcijka (Wixaleyiñ: Small Mapudungun-Spanish dictionary), Beretta, Marta; Cañumil, Dario; Cañumil, Tulio, 2008.

Quechua

Adverb

may

  1. where
  2. like, how, very

Derived terms

See also

Pronoun

may

  1. (interrogative pronoun) which

Verb

may

  1. (transitive) to fear

Conjugation


Tagalog

Verb

may

  1. there is

Tatar

Alternative forms

Noun

may

  1. May (Month of the Year)

Declension

See also


Uzbek

Noun

may (plural maylar)

  1. May

Related terms


Vietnamese

Pronunciation

Etymology 1

Verb

may

  1. to sew
Derived terms

See also

Etymology 2

From Proto-Vietic *ɓal.

Adjective

may

  1. lucky
Derived terms

Walloon

Walloon Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia wa

Etymology

From Old French mai, from Latin Māius.

Noun

may

  1. May (month)