maybe Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “maybe” in the English Dictionary

"maybe" in British English

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maybeadverb

uk   us   /ˈmeɪ.bi/
A2 used to show that something is ​possible or that something might be ​true: Maybe they'll come ​tomorrow. Maybe you were ​right after all. informal used to show that a ​number or ​amount is ​approximate: There were 200, maybe 300, ​refugees on the ​boat.A2 used to ​politelysuggest or ​ask for something: Maybe Ted would like to go. Maybe we should ​start again. used to ​avoid giving a ​clear or ​certainanswer to a ​question: "Are you coming to Kelly's ​party?" "Maybe." used to ​mean that something is a ​possibleexplanation for why something ​elsehappened: "Why were you ​chosen for the ​team and not me?" "Maybe it's because I've been to more ​practices than you."

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(Definition of maybe from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"maybe" in American English

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maybeadverb [not gradable]

 us   /ˈmeɪ·bi/
used to show that something is ​possible or that something might be ​true: Maybe I can get the ​yardmowed before it rains. There were maybe (= ​approximately) 50 ​people there when I ​left. Maybe can also be used to ​avoid giving a ​clear or ​certainanswer to a ​question: "Are you still going to ​join me for ​dinner?" "Maybe." Maybe can also be used to ​introduce a ​possibleexplanation: I ​thought maybe my ​phonemessage had ​scared him off.
(Definition of maybe from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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