per·​haps | \ pər-ˈhaps How to pronounce perhaps (audio) , ˈpraps \

Definition of perhaps

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: possibly but not certainly : maybe



Definition of perhaps (Entry 2 of 2)

: something open to doubt or conjecture

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Synonyms for perhaps

Synonyms: Adverb

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Examples of perhaps in a Sentence

Adverb perhaps we will not have to take this exam, but I doubt it
Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Washington — President Trump said on Monday that the coronavirus outbreak could last into the summer, perhaps as long as August, an indication that the widespread nationwide slowdown in response to the virus is just beginning. Kathryn Watson, CBS News, "President Trump says coronavirus crisis could last until July or August," 17 Mar. 2020 For the first time in a long time, if ever, there is no big event—no marquee movie release, no TV premiere, no athletic championship or awards show—that can unite people, aside from perhaps watching the news. Tyler Coates, Wired, "As Pandemic Strikes, Pop Culture Migrates to Streaming Sites," 16 Mar. 2020 Avoiding food waste is the first and perhaps most obvious challenge for zero-waste restaurants. Emily Matchar, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Rise of ‘Zero-Waste’ Restaurants," 16 Mar. 2020 But perhaps even better known is his brand, Ski the Whites, which sells outdoor equipment and hosts weekly ski-mountaineering and running races. Connor W. Davis, Outside Online, "In This Sufferfest, the Last Skier Standing Wins," 13 Mar. 2020 Part of what has kept that myth and has perhaps grown that myth is the side effect of the middle class being hollowed out. Chris Quintana, USA Today, "'How do we rebuild trust?' A year after admissions scandal, presidents say college must change," 10 Mar. 2020 How SurfingAttack Works First, the target device is placed on a tabletop, perhaps a desk in an office. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "The Sinister, Silent Way Hackers Can Talk to Siri and Steal Your Data," 9 Mar. 2020 Or perhaps Exodus, a coach with a coffin-loading bay, for a smooth ride to the underworld. Tom Rowley, 1843, "My journey to the heart of the great British expo," 6 Mar. 2020 But perhaps the biggest improvement is the two-piece cocking lever that reduces the effort needed to charge the gun. Joseph Albanese, Field & Stream, "The 12 Best Air Guns of 2020," 28 Feb. 2020

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

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First Known Use of perhaps


circa 1520, in the meaning defined above


1534, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for perhaps


per + hap

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Time Traveler for perhaps

Time Traveler

The first known use of perhaps was circa 1520

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Statistics for perhaps

Last Updated

20 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Perhaps.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Mar. 2020.

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More Definitions for perhaps


How to pronounce perhaps (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of perhaps

: possibly but not certainly


per·​haps | \ pər-ˈhaps How to pronounce perhaps (audio) \

Kids Definition of perhaps

: possibly but not certainly : maybe Perhaps we'll go.

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for perhaps

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with perhaps

Spanish Central: Translation of perhaps

Nglish: Translation of perhaps for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of perhaps for Arabic Speakers

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