‘Suzan isn’t answering the phone.’ ‘She might be in the garden.’; The sky is clearing up. I wonder why your friend is not here - she might have had other things to do. “I coulda been a contender” is a famous line from On the Waterfront, a classic 1954 movie. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. May / might / could have: expressing past probability: Structure: modal + have + past participle may have been, could have gone, might have lost, etc. When do we use might and might not?. and moderators, we have a number of professional volunteer English So would of is would have, could of is could have, should of is should have, will of is will have, and might of is might have: Articles about learning, using and teaching the English language, and quizzes, PDF lesson plans, teacher articles and a directory of She might not have taken the bus. Includes helpful articles, a glossary, quizzes, and a large language reference. might (not)= Maybe it is (not) true. terms, irregular verbs, phrasal verbs and idioms. As you note, 'could have' expresses that you had the possibility of borrowing it, but 'might have' would express the idea perhaps you would have borrowed it (if, for example, the circumstances had been … English language reference including definitions of English grammar teachers and language experts ready to answer your questions 24 hours a We use might, might not when we think something is (not) or will (not) be true, but we aren’t sure. Please help me analyse the tense used here. could, may : might conditional of may: 1. If the event or situation referred to did not in fact occur, it's better to use might have: The draw against Italy might have been a turning point, but it didn't turn out like that. We use may have and might have to make guesses about the past: I haven't received your letter. What is the exact meaning of "would have not been" and "would not have been" in English grammar? “Have + been” marks the past tense. If you have a question about the English language and would like to ask one of our many English teachers and language experts, please click the button below to let us know: Use the search box above to quickly search the forum, or use our Advanced Search. Articles cover topics from English Many grammar books do suggest that you use MIGHT when something is less likely and MAY when something is more likely, but as different people can interpret this differently (depending on the scenario), it makes this rule quite flexible. "If I had known about the traffic problems, I. Learn how to use may have and might have to talk about past possibility in this advanced grammar lesson. "might have not" In addition to the most common form "might not have" (described above), it is also possible to use the form "might have not": "He might not have invited me to the party." The “might” sentence simply states a fact: if the policeman hadn’t been there, the criminal would not have been arrested. the classroom. Sarah thinks she ____ her purse on the bus. "can't have": we believe the action definitely did not happen (the opposite of "must have"). Or the continuous been + verb-ing. The bus drivers might not have been able to see the smaller, lower car. links to online dictionaries. She might have walked home. The substitution of “could” for “might” directs a subtle sympathy toward the criminal: if the policeman had not been there, the perp would have been able to get away with the crime. career development, specialisations, and ideas and suggestions for Might have expresses an opinion about an earlier (past) situation. authors and contributors. He is late for this appointment. His train ____ delayed. English language resources for English learners and teachers to help If he had understood the consequences, he ____ the email. Putting it after the modal is the most widely used option: They received the letter, but they might not have understood it. I might have been taking a shower when you called. 2. "might have": we believe it's possible that the action happened, but we don't know. They might have arrived by now. teaching and reference resources. The one-word forms may and might are also nearly always interchangeable. Test your knowledge of the English language. [Grammar] Any difference between 'It may not have been' and 'It may have not been'? If you are not sure about the 3rd conditional, please review the subjunctives. She might not take the bus. My telephone stopped working the battery might have died. He might have overslept. Generally in American English, “may have been” and “might have been” are practically always interchangeable — mainly because the words “may” and “might” tends to be interchangeable too in American English. Might is a modal and have is an auxiliary verb: it is grammatically correct to put the 'not' after either the modal or after the auxiliary. She might get a ride from Bill. When people write would of, should of, could of, will of or might of, they are usually confusing the verb have with the preposition of. 4. There is also a difference in intention or meaning: “Sue and I might not have been married if I’d met you first” versus “Sue and I might have not been married when you met us.” 2.3K views There is a chance that something is true or that there is a possibility … If this is your first visit, be sure to We have placed cookies on your device to improve your experience on our website. It may have got lost in the post. If your stomach is hurting, it might have been because of the spicy food you had for lunch. They didn't want to come to the museum with us - they might have been … ‘Ann hasn’t arrived yet.’ ‘She may have missed the train.’ (= It is possible that she missed the train.) Hello AsahiYo20, You could use 'might have', but it would express probability (a guess) instead of possibility. learning English. They ____ the project yet because they only started work on it this week. See authoritative translations of Might-have-been in Spanish with example sentences, phrases and audio pronunciations. She usually takes her car so I deduce that she has definitely not left the house because her car is outside (the opposite of "must have"). 1. Might’ve – should’ve – would’ve In more formal written English, we will write both words. She usually leaves her house before 11 o’clock so I deduce that she has definitely left the house. Activate your free month of lessons (special offer for new users, with no obligation to buy) - and receive a level assessment! The real situation and result: I didn’t know about the traffic problem so I am imagining the possibility of taking a different route if I had known. I've been teased in the North for this expression and had just about been convinced it was superfluous like a double negative until I needed to use it for "might could have gotten it cheaper". … Alternative form of been there, done that, bought the T-shirt. from students and teaching forum topics. "might not have": we believe it's possible that the action did not happen, but we don't know. It is possible that he has not finished his exams, but it is also possible that he has finished them. (=It is possible that you are right.) In addition to the UsingEnglish.com team of staff 5. (Past tense) I may go to the movies tonight. Rate it: (0.00 / 0 votes) been to the rodeo: Exposed to conmen and hucksters; experienced. (Present tense) If you can determine the tense of your sentence, you can easily choose between might or may. One of the bus drivers might have changed lanes without looking first. 1. (=It is possible that you have already heard that....) 2. To express (future) possibility. [Grammar] Any difference between 'It may not have been' and 'It may have not been'? Both are most commonly used to say that something is possible or probable, as in these examples: You may/might be right. In the second sentence, "not" is used to emphasise the negative of the main verb; in this case, "might have" describes a positive possibility that he did not send the invitations. The following dictation exercises include use of this grammar structure: Modals: can't have/ must have / might have, Modals: must, have to, should, should have, Modals: can’t have, must have, might have - passive, General vocabulary trainer – save your score, access audio files. 2. ‘What was that noise?’ ‘It might have been an airplane.’ Might - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary 3. you study, learn and teach English including text analysis, language Copyright 2013-2020 Copyright and trademark information. It might not rain this afternoon. Could + have is often shortened into “coulda” when speaking but not in writing. For example: She could not have been on that flight because I just saw her at work. I understand that due to work commitment, you might not have been able to come, but please make yourself available in our coming meeting. "But he might have not sent out the invitations yet." We use may have, could have, might have to say that it was possible that something happened in the past (but we are not 100% sure). 3. Now, let’s talk about grammar. Let’s use some examples for comparison: He’s been limping since this past week; he can’t have won the race yesterday at all. UsingEnglish.com is partnering with Gymglish to give you a free one-month trial of this online English training course. Also provides access to questions By the time you read this, he may have made his decision. Read about how to use them here. "must have": we believe the action definitely happened. We use might when we are not sure about something in the present or future: I might see you tomorrow. The clause with might have describes the possible result of the unreal situation described by the "if" clause. Rate it: (0.00 / 0 votes) been there, though not done that: Used for expressing that though one may have seen something (unpleasant), he may have not participated in the same. Could not have means that something was impossible in the past. It could also be used to say that something was true in the past. He might have forgotten that we were meeting today. including advice, tutorials, opinions and lesson plans from various Our online discussion forums are the perfect place to quickly get help I actually substituted may have been able to, but either one conveys the same meaning. Resources and materials for ESL teachers including free ESL handouts It is also believed by some people that MAY (present tense) should be used when you are talking about a current situation and MIGHT (past tense) when you’re … between those two patterns? Even though "have" and "has" come from the same verb "to have," there are slight differences in the way they’re used. We use contractions (short versions) of these expressions in spoken English. If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. It's quite bright. While Can’t Have (Been) is used to refer to an incident in the near past, Couldn’t Have (Been) is used for an event that happened way back in the past. The past negative is might not / mightn’t / may not / can’t / couldn’t + have + been or the past participle of another verb. I'm not sure what tense this is and whether I have used it correctly. I think that comment might have offended some people. 2. You can find out more in our Cookie Policy and Privacy Policy Continue. The road might have been blocked. Translate Might-have-been. To nearly all Americans, these sentences carry … You did not show up in our last week's gathering. A GUESS: The car driver might have tried to pass between two buses. Show activity on this post. She might not be on the bus. Do they mean same thing? day. Level: intermediate. “Could” is conditional. For example, He might have called earlier, but I was not home. : He may have missed the bus. (Past tense) The criminal might not have been caught, had you not sounded the alarm. May - English Grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary Click on the highlighted spelling error, grammar improvements or writing suggestion for more options. It's ten o'clock. Might have – should have – would have *For this lesson I will use both styles. If I entered the contest, I might actually win. It looks nice, but it might be very expensive. If I had entered the contest, I might actually have won. As you may or may not/might or might not have heard, we won the race! Then it might not have been like thisI would say this looks very much like the 3rd conditional structure which means: If you had come at different time, things might/ may not have been like this. If you want to learn English grammar or grow your vocabulary then these resources will help you with your studies. The structure may / might + perfect infinitive is used to talk about the possibility that something happened in the past. 3. Should have + past participle 1: Should have + past participle can mean something that would have been a good idea, but that you didn't do it. check out the. Also includes ; I might (not)= It is possible that I will (not) It is possible that she has gone to the shops, but it is also possible that she has gone somewhere else. It might not rain today. This answer is not useful. Is there any difference in usage, meaning, connotation, style, etc. Either is correct although “might not have been” sounds less awkward. She might be walking home. Any difference between 'It may not have been' and 'It may have not been'? grammar, spelling and punctuation, through to language teaching, tips, exam tips and help with study skills. ; They might win the competition. By continuing to use our website without changing your settings, we assume you are happy to receive these cookies. Includes tests, a question bank, quizzes, language polls and more. Simply paste or write your text below and click Check My Writing to get feedback on your writing. Difference in usage, meaning, connotation, style, etc putting it after the modal is the most used! Are also nearly always interchangeable “ might not have understood it because I saw... Will help you with your studies includes tests, a glossary, quizzes, and a large language reference definitions. 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Out the FAQ by clicking the link above and usage - Cambridge Dictionary Translate Might-have-been is your first,... Phrasal verbs and idioms but I was not home something was true in the Present or future: I actually... Suggestion for more options action definitely happened are not sure about something in past... Have means that something is possible that he has finished them grammar grow! She has definitely left the house ; the sky is clearing up that he not. Out more in our Cookie Policy and Privacy Policy Continue see you tomorrow you not sounded alarm! Reference including definitions of English grammar and usage - Cambridge Dictionary Translate Might-have-been should ve. Forum topics want to learn English grammar Today - a reference to written and spoken English grammar terms, verbs. 0.00 / 0 votes ) been to the movies tonight online English training.. The 3rd conditional, please review the subjunctives the race, may: might conditional of may might. 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Phrasal verbs and idioms a classic 1954 movie past possibility in this advanced lesson. House before 11 o ’ clock so I deduce that she has gone somewhere else used option: received... Very expensive vocabulary then these resources will help you with your studies this, he have. It correctly in our last week 's gathering and idioms happy to receive these cookies votes been... Experience on our website versions ) of these expressions in spoken English can easily choose between might or may your... When do we use may have not been ' and 'It may not have means that something true! To get feedback on your writing garden. ’ ; the sky is clearing.! Won the race choose between might or may I actually substituted may have not sent the! The past 's possible that the action definitely happened classic 1954 movie criminal might not have been ” marks past. Saw her at work sent out the might not have been grammar yet. choose between might or may or. Policy and Privacy Policy Continue the phone. ’ ‘ she might have other.