第84課: Might: かもしれない

I might do this. That might be the case. As you can see, this lesson is about how to say might as in these contexts in Japanese. Be sure to say this phrase with pitch rising on か. 

かもしれない

かもしれない means "might" as in there is a possibility of something. The predicate that it follows should be in the plain form, but だ is deleted when directly before it. It may also be seen as やも知れない or contracted to かも in casual speech. It is typically just written in かな. 

Phrases like ひょっとして (maybe/possibly) and もしかしたら・もしかすると・もしかして (perhaps/possibly) are almost always used with かもしれない. 

1. まだっていなかったかもしれない。
  He might have not been going home yet.

2. あんたにとっては、些細ささいなことかもけどな、でもには大切問題だぞ。(Masculine; Vulgar)
  For you, it may like be trivial, but to me it's a like a big deal!

3. 彼はもうったかもな。
He might have already come home.

4. 人間にんげんての石油せきゆ使いきってしまうが{おとずれる・る}かもしれません。
  The time may come when man will have used up all oil.

5. なるほど、のいうりかもしれんね。
  Well then, you may be right.

6. 彼はひょっとしてまだにいるでしょうか。
  Might he still be outside?

7. ひょっとしたら彼女はここへるだろう。
  She will possibly come here.

8. 前の試験しけんが難しかったなら、今度こんどの試験も難しいかもしれません。 
  If the previous exam was difficult, the next exam may also be difficult.

9. それだけの意味はあろうかもしれない。
   There might just be that much meaning. 
By 堀辰雄.  

Grammar Note: かもしれない{だろう・でしょう} would be weird because of doubling more or less the same thing, but it turns out that reversing this as such in the example is possible. However, this speech style is older.  

10. もしかしたらわるかもしれません。
   He might change his mind.  

11. ひょっとするとうかもしれません。
   Chances are that we'll meet rain.

Alternative Note: Possible as in "possible to do" is expressed with the adjective 可能かのうな.  

12. 計画実行じっこう可能だ。
   The plan's execution is possible.