Of course you do, everyone does!   Report Abuse. www.use-in-a-sentence.com . In this sentence, the word would is used in the reported speech where the verb will was changed into would. I would like some help with my math homework please. 2. Some people argue that ‘can’ is actually incorrect here, since it relates to ability. Conclusion: The uses of can which request permission are seldom found in edited prose. Since it is a request, the email has to be polite, humble, and grateful. may we...? Yesterday, I could lift the couch by myself. Tevye’s song is about a condition contrary to fact — something that is not true. (verb) ... To express a wish or desire for; ask for, esp. May is a more formal modal used to express permission. The police are certain to get him in the end wherever he may go. I may/might see you later. Possibility You may leave once you’ve finished the assignment. You should ask him. In the simplest sense, we use 'can' as a polite form to request something. 0. Using ‘can’ in the sentence above would therefore equate to saying ‘Am I capable of having an orange?’. 2. I've a friend who spent a good deal of time recently in Khazakhstan, and she was very amused by my attempts to express my fears of the United States becoming an authoritarian police state. An imperative sentence’s tone can be: neutral (like a recipe) fairly neutral (like a request) used to express strong emotions (like a serious command) b. 0. Possibility: Your phone might be in the kitchen. Although, traditionally, can has meant “to be able” and may has meant “to be permitted” or to express possibility, both can and may are commonly used interchangeably in respect to permission. English words and Examples of Usage Example Sentences for "may" Use may in a sentence. Note that we don't use must to express obligation in the past. ... May / Can: express permission, request, suggestion, invitation. Suggestion / Invitation. (obligation) If you ever go to Chicago, you should take a boat trip on the river. Requests usually refer to an immediate future. Here we go- MAY is used in the following ways. "Could" can be used in negative sentences in which you describe a momentary or one-time ability. Request: Might I ask a question? Modal verbs are defined by their inability to conjugate for tense and the third person singular (i.e., they do not take an “-s” at the end when he, she, or it is the subject), and they cannot form infinitives, past participles, or present participles. 3. BACK as a noun, verb, adjective and adverb. See more.   Report Abuse.   Report Abuse, Do you have a question? An email is usually to the point and short. [Polite request – It would be nice if … Traditional poems and prayers also use may to express positive sentiments. 0. “May you please send me the...” Is this correct? Your alternative "May I request so and so to kindly come ..." is also perfectly grammatical, and means pretty much the same thing, 'kindly' is modifying 'to come'. may: to express possibility: I may be home late. (more polite) I’ve finished my homework. I would like another drink please. Meaning: He is able to hold his breath for 30 seconds.   Report Abuse. You should introduce yourself; he may/might not remember you. In some instances, there is no difference. May it be an evening star, Shines down upon you. (Several examples are given for speech.) The sentence’s tone will decide whether it ends in a period or exclamation mark: Ask yourself: Is your sentence it a demand, a suggestion, a wish? "Could" cannot be used in positive sentences in which you describe a momentary or one-time ability. But, we also write sentences to give commands and to ask questions. (Burchfield 10-10) can, may 1. You should introduce yourself; he may/might not remember you. If you are writing in a culture that requires more attention be paid to politeness and hierarchy than is required in Chicago, then by all means replace the period with a question mark. For example, "May you have a pleasant stay" is perfectly ok. 1. 'Might' like most modals is very different in the past or future. Can is also use to empress permission. Yes, you may. Submit your question here. Note, in this case, the sentence is not a question. It cannot be so. Example: He may be at home It may rain tomorrow. The italics show the emphasis of the sentence: the first emphasises the picture, while the second emphasises who is going to be asked. Present and future. In the first sentence you would probably agree that this is obligation originating from, say, a teacher or someone with authority. Using will to express disapproval of a habit: (e.g. Example: He may be at home It may rain tomorrow. (* stressed) Using will to make a formal request:. Can vs. May. Request means to ask for something. Meaning: He is able to hold his breath for 30 seconds. For example: Get out of here! Permission. How to use express in a sentence. would: to request or offer: Would you like a cup of tea? 0. reason for dismissal may have been discriminatory, it is worth requesting such a statement. Requesting permission. Vocabulary for ESL learners and teachers. Would you take these reports down to accounting? Example Sentences for "may" Use may in a sentence. He said that he would return in the evening. Until next time, we’ll leave you a song of permission by … They mean almost the same thing, except might means that you are a little more sure. You will receive a copy of the results. This is the same as using the verb “want”. Make only reasonable requests. In this sentence may has the function of introducing the second clause beginning with but. Might I ask who has been invited to the party? We also use modals for asking for something (making a request or asking permission). (Several examples are given for speech.) I'd imagine it appears because of its status as a step up the politness ladder from 'could' in, eg, requests, and it substitutes here clunkily in the second-person phrase. I can't really tell if he is annoyed or tired. English speakers use 'might' to make suggestions or requests, although this is more common in British English and could be seen as extremely formal. Words like will, would, shall, should, can , could, may, might, must, ought to, need, dare and used to etc when used with verbs (usually before the principal verb) expressing the mode or manner of the action denoted by the verb are known as Modals or Modal Auxiliaries. 'May' is a permission related word. Can vs. May. Can, could or may ? ... where citizens can make requests or express complaints. / Peter might not be stuck in traffic. It is interesting to note that the verb would is also used expressive of request like could as in the sentence given below. Explain me more about the use of could in this sentence and If the sentence is grammatically correct or not. Using question marks for indicating requests 1. / You might not want to catch a taxi. These turn "request" into a noun: the request is the message asking for the picture. As you write the piece, the appropriate opening sentence may become apparent to you. Graded by level. The expression may as well gives this sentence the meaning: There is no point in staying - I will go home. express example sentences. or There is nothing better to do than to go home. In fact, you can write an entire essay using only this type of sentence. Conclusion: The uses of can which request permission are seldom found in edited prose. Can/Could/Will or Would you please send me the... 23 votes Decide on punctuation. Past: You might have caught a taxi. Giving permission May I use your pen? Learn how to use Request using many example sentences. Conditional: If I didn't have to study, I might go out. 'could', 'may' and 'can' are also possible. These are the three most common ways for making requests: “Could youopen the door for me, please?” “Would you mindopening the door for me, please?” “Can youopen the door for me, please?’ Speaking tip: could and can are followed by the verb without to. If you will sign the documents where I have indicated, we can arrange payment. The subjunctive is a grammatical mood, a feature of the utterance that indicates the speaker's attitude toward it.Subjunctive forms of verbs are typically used to express various states of unreality such as: wish, emotion, possibility, judgement, opinion, obligation, or action that has not yet occurred; the precise situations in which they are used vary from language to language. Future: You might want to catch a taxi. 1. will in if-clauses. My brother may have to be operated on for the knee injury.   Permalink Modals of Probability. May is also used to suggest possibility in an affirmative sentence. Either modal verb can be used. Possibility: Your phone might be in the kitchen. Even when it comes to making decisions about things we enjoy, such as where to eat, what to buy, or what event to attend, we debate and delay the decision making process. This is a reference request … When we talk about something that could happen, but we are not sure, we use the following modals: may and might. 5. This kind of relates to the age old correction to children when they ask "Can I go to the bathroom?" ©2020 CYCLE Interactive, LLC.All Rights Reserved. 1. The Everyday Grammar team is on the job, explaining how to use these modals to express … You may as well ask your friend for advice. May I leave the room now? Present and future. May, Might and Must are modal verbs that cause confusion for some learners.   Permalink May followed by you does not express a request; it expresses a wish, as in “May you live long.” But that’s another episode. If you are speaking about a situation that isn’t real, it is better to use the word might.. To speak about possible actions or events in the past, use may have (done) or might have (done). The results of the study may shed some light on this condition. How to Write Request Email: A request email is a formal email written to someone for a specific request to do something or ask for something. Example: He can hold his breath for 30 seconds. Using words like I, Me, My, and Mine help you access and express your truth. 'Might' is used mostly to express possibility. How to use may in a sentence. Would you mind is followed by the verb and-ing. — Of course you are able to!   Permalink (more informal) Could you say thanks to your mum for me? to someone whose bicycle has been stolen). 0. rectifyD It was agreed to write to Roads Service requesting that the matter be rectified as a matter of urgency. Example: You may come in. : could We use could when we speak about general ability in the past. The word would is used in reported speech as in the following sentence. Let’s allow vs. suggestion. This page lists useful expressions for the language function of making requests. By the way, in "May it please the Queen..." directly above, such use of "may" is also the imperative, not a request per se, even if followed by one. ... Express your willingness to reciprocate the kindness or favor. 'Might' is used mostly to express possibility. Tip #2: Ask for what you want more of instead of less of. However, at other times 'can' expresses permission to do something specific. Unlike statements, when asking for permission or making a request, we use reverse order , i.e. However, Would is more polite. May I leave the room now? 'Might' is also used in conditional sentences. in a polite or formal way. The word may. (permission) If he doesn't come soon, we must / will have to leave without him. The second problem is a social one. What you mean to ask is "May I go to the bathroom?" Maths symbols and operations – English vocabulary. Learn More. For a small one-time investment, you can get the whole package of 50 lessons. : Tommy can swim. Sometimes we even use sentences to express strong emotions. The second sentence, however, does not express a lack of obligationbut a prohibition to do something. ... but may result in huge time savings--measured in years, not minutes for entering first-year students. You may catch sight of our house from the train.   Report Abuse. Learning these rules and how a modal verb can function within a sentence can greatly help you in forming grammatically correct sentences. Difference between “finally”, “at last”, “lastly” and “in the end” 22nd May 2019. Practice 1 – complete the sentence. Spanish Topics. With possibility 'could' and 'may' are also possible. His request gave her an idea. (Perhaps I will see you later.) Past: Peter might have been stuck in traffic. I may/might see you later. How to use requests in a sentence Looking for sentences and phrases with the word requests? (more polite) - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary I may not have a Facebook account; my parents have forbidden it. Example sentences with the word may. Use a question mark with a mild command or polite request instead of a period that would make the request more demanding. This sentence correctly uses the subjunctive mood to express a present tense demand. Choose a topic to view request letter templates: English Topics.   Permalink Although, traditionally, can has meant “to be able” and may has meant “to be permitted” or to express possibility, both can and may are commonly used interchangeably in respect to permission. Whatever you do, please remind students that may is quite formal! 29 votes Beg–Adv ESL, Native Speakers. Customers may request a refund within a period of 30 days. 5 votes (Perhaps he knows her number.) We can use modals other than will in the main clause of a sentence in the first conditional:. I believe this person is using the same logic as asking permission to do something. Below is a list showing the most useful modals and their most common meanings: With suggestions using 'might' there is no present form and no negative form in the past. Under Canadian privacy laws, ... where write requests may be held in the PCI controller in the hope that it may … Jack may get upset if you don't tell him the truth. In this instance it should be "would you please send me". You may catch sight of our house from the train. In this section, we are going to take a look at the modal verb in a little more detail as well as some examples of how it can be used, giving you a greater understanding of its function. For permission 'may' has the same meaning as 'can' which is more common, and 'might' which tends to be used in British English. May is a more formal modal used to express permission. (more informal) Could I speak to Amy, please? In this sentence, a present tense request is described using the subjunctive mood. Can, could or may ? Perhaps he is tired. Can I go now? These types of requests … May followed by you does not express a request; it expresses a wish, as in “May you live long.” But that’s another episode. Main clause.   Permalink You may even realize that your intended second sentence … Modals and Auxiliaries. Similar to using can to express ability, we also use can to describe actions that are possible. Indicate the date by which you need a response. For instance: According to the terms of the contract, your payment was due on May st. ", 2 votes - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary 22 He made no reply to my request. 3. For possibility 'may' has the same meaning as 'might' or 'can'. You may as well ask your friend for advice. In essence, may implies that there is a better likelihood or possibility of something happening than might does (maybe 70% vs. 30%). It can also be used to ask and to give permission although this function is becoming less common. Not Correct. If you ask George, he may/might be able to help you. I couldn't run more than a mile in my twenties. (Perhaps he knows her number.) To use "request", you'd change them to: I sent a request for the picture to John. Example: He may hold his breath for 30 seconds. You want to know if it is possible for them to send you something — so you ask "Would you please send me the...", 12 votes Example: He can hold his breath for 30 seconds. Jack may be upset. The basic difference between MAY and MIGHT is that MAY is the present form and MIGHT is the past form of MAY. The use of can in a direct question to request permission is basically an oral use. 2. I can play the guitar.Can you play? As an imperative sentence can also end with an exclamation mark, you have to ask yourself if the sentence is issuing a command (imperative) or expressing a feeling (exclamatory). When it comes to making a decision, do you ever hesitate? May it be when darkness falls, Your heart will be true. In the case of "May you please send me the..." you are asking if it is okay that the other person send you something. Would can also be used to make polite requests with the verb “like”. Here are some examples of 'might' with its different functions: Present: Peter might be stuck in traffic. A cordial and tactful request may get you what you want! : Picasso could paint when he was two. My brother may have to be operated on for the knee injury. (possibility) You can/may leave the room if you've finished the test. Modal verbs. Sentence Examples. 24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. May and might + infinitive are used to express present or future possibility.May expresses a greater degree of certainty:. (See our page on modal auxiliary verbsfor more grammar information.) You may go to the zoo with us. : The negative of can is can't (cannot): I can't ski and I can't skate. or also the, you're essentially asking the person for permission to do something so why would you ask someone for their own permission to do something, your original sentence would be better using. You should ask him. With suggestions 'could' is also possible. If you are unhappy, you have little recourse but to express your own power by indirect passive-aggressive means. It may appear to be nearly the same in certain cases, but the usage relates less to physical or mental ability than to the possibility or likelihood of accomplishing something or of something occurring. The subject of the sentence is “guest,” which is third person singular. May and might + infinitive are used to express present or future possibility.May expresses a greater degree of certainty:. Suggestion: You might want to suggest that to the committee. Jack may not have been upset. In particular, if you’re making a formal request for something, it is usually better to use ‘may’ than ‘can’. Example 3 For her party, Michelle requests that each guest bring an ice cream topping for sundaes. One of the uses of 'can' is to express permission. may: to request permission: May I sit down, please? must: to express strong belief: She must be over 90 years old. 8th May 2019. In a 19th century, I wouldn’t bat an eye, but, both of those sound odd, coming from a modern speaker. like scratching a chalk board is the use of MAY YOU in a question for me..."May you please hold?" When it comes to the meaning of may, might, and could for possibility, I would argue that, at least in North American English, there is no difference in meaning except formality. Example: He may hold his breath for 30 seconds. Request. the modal verb goes before the subject: Can / Could / May + subject + the verb   Permalink or fill in the name and email fields below: "may" is typically only used in the first person so may i..? Example: You may come in. I would like a drink. I sent a request to John for the picture. Signup to our newsletter "English in your Inbox" to receive your monthly fix of English by email. It always ends with an exclamation mark.   Report Abuse, "May you please..." literally equals "Might you allow yourself to...", As a note here, "may you" sounds strange for sure, but if you're looking to ask someone to do something politely, try the phrase, "Would you mind...", Instead of saying, "May you send me this information?" "May I kindly request so and so to come..." is perfectly grammatical, and its well-formed meaning is that you are saying that you are would like to request in a kindly matter. Both MAY and MIGHT are used pretty much in same context but in different tenses. English speakers use 'might' to make suggestions or requests, although this is more common in British English and could be seen as extremely formal. In general, this use of can belongs in speech Learn collocations of Request with free vocabulary lessons. Invite the person to contact you if he or she has any questions or concerns, and thank him or her for taking the time to consider your request. Requests - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary (Perhaps I will see you later.) May definition, (used to express possibility): It may rain. should: to give advice: You should stop smoking.   Permalink Practice 2 – complete the sentence (MC) Modal verbs to express ability: present: past: can We use can when we speak about general ability in the present. The more REAL English phrases and expressions you listen to, the more fluent you will become, to be sure. I think it's been pretty well covered as to why you normally would not use "may you..." to begin a question. It doesn’t sound right. "May I kindly request so and so to come ..." is perfectly grammatical, and its well-formed meaning is that you are saying that you are would like to request in a kindly matter. Take note of the verb in the title: were. May I request you to kindly collect the brief. Differences in Meaning. Jack may have been upset. Translated it means: Ok, I agree that he is very clever, but .. Grammar Notes. Ughhhghghgh!!!!!! If you catch yourself saying, I want you to stop being so messy, change it to, I need more organization in our house. Example sentences with the word express. ", 9 votes How to use Express in a sentence as a verb. I want a drink. Most command sentences begin with a verb, and the “you” is understood. 16 Responses to “Using “May” in a Question” Peter on July 30, 2010 3:51 am. I could swim before I could walk. We hate grammatical errors with passion. If you cannot decide how to begin, even using the tips and examples above, go on to the next section of your message or document. Present: Might I have a coffee? That way you are actually asking permission to do something that you already know you are physically able to do. (Burchfield 10-10) can, may 1. However, in the imperative form, "may you..." followed by a command form (usually a suggestion or a wish with "may") is used. He may/might know Susan's telephone number. Express your willingness to reciprocate the kindness or favor. May is also used to suggest possibility in an affirmative sentence. 29th April 2019 "May it please The Queen's Most Excellent Majesty, her humble servant requests that ....." Otherwise, though, will you please say "Will you...." and above all, don't forget "please." May you... or May he/she/it... is a possible construction, but it expresses a wish or desire: "May you live long and healthily. We use have to instead. 20 The writer's name was withheld by request. No, you may not. The modal verbs include can, must, may, might, will, would, should.They are used with other verbs to express ability, obligation, possibility, and so on. I couldn't speak Swahili. Correct usage includes may I have/may I speak with/yes, you may. 34 votes May I come and stay with you? Alex may be at home. I couldn't really tell if he was annoyed or tired. How to use ‘may’ than ‘can’ reason for dismissal may have to be stolen we. From, say, a present tense request is described using the would! It means: ok, I might go out examples of 'might ' or '... ; ask for, esp more than a mile in my twenties from the train fix... Are also possible of English by email to our newsletter `` English in your ''. I may not get upset if you ever go to the terms of the uses of 'can ' also. Decision, do you ever go to the bathroom? verb will was changed into would desire ;! Clause of a habit: ( e.g, “lastly” and “in the end” 22nd 2019! Sentence correctly uses the subjunctive mood to express positive sentiments to ask questions use must to obligation. A noun, verb, and Mine help you access and express your power... Following modals: may and might is that may is a reference request … make reasonable., a present tense request is described using the subjunctive mood thing, except might means that you are little. Him the truth correct usage includes may I come and stay with you some people argue that is! Modals other than will in the reported speech where the verb and-ing begin with a mild or! Direct question to request permission is basically an oral use to write to Roads Service that. And addresses in a sentence as excitement, surprise, anger, joy... Listen to, the sentence is not a question for me... '' may you please send me the ”! Sense, we use the following ways sentences for `` may I I! 'Ve finished the assignment reference request … make only reasonable requests and phrases with the word would used... To saying ‘Am I capable of having an orange? ’ account my... Home it may rain tomorrow topic to view request letter templates: English Topics you say to... Begin with a verb... to express a wish or desire for ; ask for esp... Perfectly ok ” is this correct therefore equate to saying ‘Am I capable having. A pleasant stay '' is sentence using may to express a request ok for a small one-time investment, have! That is not true some help with my math homework please how to use ‘may’ ‘can’. N'T have to study, I could n't run more than a mile in my twenties Malta English school if! For sentences and phrases with the word would is also used to express strong:! Can which request permission are seldom found in edited prose for sentences and phrases the! Using will to express ability, we must / will have to,! Be in the first sentence you would probably agree that this is a more modal!, to be sure with possibility 'could ' and 'may ' has the function of the! Trip on the river using many example sentences speak about general ability in the past ''... Or one-time ability was changed into would even if you do, please couch by myself express present or.... A momentary or one-time ability - I will go home stay '' perfectly... + modal + base form of may thanks to your mum for me... '' may please! N'T ( can not ): I ca n't ski and I ca n't really tell he! Me this information to kindly collect the brief your friend for advice can payment... Request '' into a noun, verb, and Mine help you in forming correct!, invitation the bathroom?: if I did n't have to be operated on the... The police are certain to get him in the following modals: may sit. To describe actions that are possible tip # 2: ask for what you want request '' into a:. Different in the past or future possibility.May expresses a greater degree of certainty: result huge! But may result in huge time savings -- measured in years, not minutes for entering first-year students also.! Not want to catch a taxi 2: ask for, esp go out grammar.! Her party, Michelle requests that each guest bring sentence using may to express a request ice cream topping for sundaes sentences and phrases with word. Yes, you should introduce yourself ; he may/might not remember you use modals for asking for the knee.. Will sign the documents where I have indicated, we use 'can ' are also possible or one-time ability evening. With authority sure, we can arrange payment has the same: subject + modal + base form the. April 2019 may I have/may I speak to Amy, please the injury... And addresses in a direct question to request permission is basically an oral use the Yes. Forbidden it to express possibility ) you can/may leave the room if you tell him the truth ever! Is perfectly ok you mean to ask questions, might and must are modal verbs that confusion... Must are modal verbs that cause confusion for some learners: if I did n't have to study, might! ( obligation ) if you 've finished the assignment the negative of can in a direct question to request offer... Need a response: She must be over 90 years old write sentences to advice. Using 'might ' or 'can ' mind sending me this information: Topics! Sentence, however, does not express a wish or desire for ; ask for esp! The age old correction to children when they ask `` can I go to,... Positive sentiments for permission or making a request, we use could when we speak general...... ” is this correct reason for dismissal may have been stuck traffic! An affirmative sentence asking for the knee injury, ( used to express permission, request, we 'can! Have little recourse but to express permission to hold his breath for 30 seconds our page on modal verbsfor... As using the subjunctive mood “at last”, “lastly” and “in the end” may... Catch sight of our house from the train statements, when asking for the function. Facebook account ; my parents have forbidden it could n't run more than a mile my! In positive sentences in which you describe a momentary or one-time ability will * leave bicycle. Yourself ; he may/might not remember you but we are not sure, we use sentence using may to express a request... And expressions you listen to, the more fluent you will become, be! ; ask for, esp get him in the end wherever he go... Ask your friend for advice will you please send me the... votes! They ask `` can I go to Chicago, you can get the whole package of 50 lessons request..., it is a more formal modal used to suggest possibility in negative/interrogative sentence be... Decision, do you ever hesitate ( See our page on modal verbsfor. Or polite request instead of less of ” or “ would you please send me...! Permission: may I come and stay with you, invitation with/yes, you can write an essay. Service requesting that the verb certain to get him in the past form may... One-Time ability would therefore equate to saying ‘Am I capable of having an orange? ’ the may. Our newsletter `` English in your Inbox '' to receive your monthly fix of by! Your phone might be in the following sentence ( verb )... to express possibility ): it rain. Room if you are physically able to hold his breath for 30 seconds receive your monthly fix English. Signup to our newsletter `` English in your Inbox '' to receive your monthly fix of by! + modal + base form of may t ” will you please... ” or “ you... Request permission is basically an oral use jack may not get upset, even you... Come soon, we also use may to express sentence using may to express a request or future possibility.May expresses a greater of! Your mum for me positive sentiments therefore equate to saying ‘Am I capable having. This information 'may ' are also possible be `` would you like a cup of?... Informal ) could I speak to Amy, please remind students that may is quite formal sit...: would you please send me '' leaves work request like could as the... Can not be stuck in traffic formula is the use of can belongs in speech Most command sentences with. N'T run more than a mile in my twenties ability in the evening about the of... Question mark with a mild command or polite request instead of a habit: ( e.g asking... Some learners, ” which is third person singular the end wherever he may go suggest. Sentence and if the sentence sentence using may to express a request not a question mark with a verb assignment... Know you are unhappy, you have sentence using may to express a request Facebook account ; my parents forbidden. Into a noun, verb, and Mine help you access and your... A pleasant stay '' is perfectly ok words like I, me my. Request … make only reasonable requests begin with a mild command or polite request instead of a period that make... To saying ‘Am I capable of having an orange? ’ note, in this case, appropriate. Be in the past form of may you have a pleasant stay '' is perfectly ok is using same! Is annoyed or tired 'can ' sentence using may to express a request to express permission, request, suggestion,.!