\ ˈmīt How to pronounce might (audio) \

Definition of might

 (Entry 1 of 2)

past tense of may

1 used to express permission, liberty, probability, or possibility in the past The president might do nothing without the board's consent.
2 used to say that something is possible We might get there before it rains.I might go, but then again, I might not.
3 used to express a present condition contrary to fact If you were older you might understand.
4a used as a polite alternative to may Might I ask who is calling?
b used as a polite alternative to ought or should You might at least apologize.I might have known she'd be late.



Definition of might (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the power, authority, or resources wielded (as by an individual or group)
b(1) : bodily strength
(2) : the power, energy, or intensity of which one is capable ran with all her might striving with might and main
2 dialect : a great deal

Choose the Right Synonym for might


power, force, energy, strength, might mean the ability to exert effort. power may imply latent or exerted physical, mental, or spiritual ability to act or be acted upon. the awesome power of flowing water force implies the actual effective exercise of power. used enough force to push the door open energy applies to power expended or capable of being transformed into work. a worker with boundless energy strength applies to the quality or property of a person or thing that makes possible the exertion of force or the withstanding of strain, pressure, or attack. use weight training to build your strength might implies great or overwhelming power or strength. the belief that might makes right

Examples of might in a Sentence

Noun an impressive display of military might the legal might of the government
Recent Examples on the Web: Auxiliary verb Spencer Torkelson said RIley Greene's promotion to the big leagues might be the spark the Detroit Tigers needed. Tony Garcia, Detroit Free Press, 18 June 2022 Your charm might not be enough to skate through life unscathed at this time. Chicago Tribune, 18 June 2022 Most of us, however, might be hard pressed to classify Friday, with its record high temperature, as anything but baking, broiling summer. Martin Weil, Washington Post, 18 June 2022 Some pediatricians, nurses and pharmacists might be more familiar with that vaccine and not want to introduce another product. Arkansas Online, 18 June 2022 Several experts said that this might be because Pfizer and BioNTech chose a lower dose for children. Matthew Herper And Helen Branswell, STAT, 18 June 2022 As many of those calling for widespread changes suggest, observing Juneteenth might then be an opportunity to reflect on how far the nation has come -- and how much further there is to go. Harmeet Kaur, CNN, 18 June 2022 Your new best animal friend might be right under your nose. San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 June 2022 But the opening room, devoted to Klein’s early work in painting and graphic design, might be the most eye-opening. Vince Aletti, The New Yorker, 18 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Russian victory, on the other hand, would mark the victory of might over right, of brute tyranny over the rule of law. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 29 May 2022 Revving the monetary engine with much of the economy in partial lockdown might, rather than helping revive real activity, simply blow asset bubbles or encourage more capital to flee the country. Nathaniel Taplin, WSJ, 17 May 2022 An idea that isn’t buoyed by significant market knowledge might, depending on the market, be considered too unwieldy or confusing (think: too many bells and whistles). Olivier Chateau, Forbes, 16 May 2022 After Russia's military troops invaded Ukraine nearly 40 days ago, the larger army's might has been repeatedly stalled by Ukraine's military determination and will to save their homeland, resulting in a slowed attack and severe losses for Russia. Lawrence Richard, Fox News, 3 Apr. 2022 For all Russia’s might, its battlefield position is something that can be influenced by Ukraine’s actions—and ours. Jordan Michael Smith, The New Republic, 20 Apr. 2022 Refinery utilization on the Gulf Coast, the largest concentration of U.S. refining might, was 94.3%, the highest since Jan. 2020. Barbara J Powell, Bloomberg.com, 30 Mar. 2022 If antibodies were the end-all-be-all, Moderna’s infant-and-toddler vaccine might, in theory, be a total shoo-in. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 29 Mar. 2022 The science shows that a 20-mile long run might, in fact, be right for you, but only if your weekly mileage is around 65 miles per week and if your long run workout pace is faster than 9:00 minutes per mile. Luke Humphrey, Outside Online, 14 Apr. 2016 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'might.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of might

Auxiliary verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for might

Auxiliary verb

Middle English, from Old English meahte, mihte; akin to Old High German mahta, mohta could


Middle English, from Old English miht; akin to Old High German maht might, magan to be able — more at may entry 1

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Time Traveler for might

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The first known use of might was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near might



might and main

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Statistics for might

Last Updated

21 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Might.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/might. Accessed 28 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for might


\ ˈmīt How to pronounce might (audio) \

Kids Definition of might

 (Entry 1 of 2)

past tense of may

used as a helping verb to show that something is possible but not likely We might arrive before it rains.



Kids Definition of might (Entry 2 of 2)

: power that can be used (as by a person or group) our army's might I tried with all my might.

More from Merriam-Webster on might

Nglish: Translation of might for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of might for Arabic Speakers


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