"might " indicating possibility not strength

1
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I know that there is not a word in spanish that directly translates to might so how do you express might in spanish.
I was thinking that the future tense might work but there is a difference between will and might.
I will give you the toy if you ask nicely vs. I might give you the toy if you ask nicely.(there is still a possibility that he/she might not get the toy even if they do as you ask)

After making that conclusion my only guess is that you'd use the subjunctive in some way. Help me!

6024 views
updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by ravensty

16 Answers

1
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Hola Nila, no estoy de acuerdo, no es lo mismo decir:

Puede que vaya a la fiesta.<---|---|---|-es posible que vaya
Es probable que vaya a la fiesta.

En la primera frase, en mi opinión, se expresa más duda, creo yo.

updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by 00494d19
1
vote

Has anyone checked the dictionary yet?

poder
5. intr. Ser contingente o posible que suceda algo.
MORF. U. solo en 3.ª pers. Puede que llueva mañana.
Real Academia Española © Todos los derechos reservados

updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by lazarus1907
1
vote

"Puede" is present indicative, not subjunctive, and it is in third person because "Puede que..." is an impersonal construction similar "It is possible that...". All impersonal constructions in Spanish are always in third person singular (él/ella). Notice how "It is possible that..." requires a third person in English too (It...).

Subjunctive does not express doubt. It is a gross misconception!

"iría si tengo ganas" instead it translated as "puede que vaya si tengo ganas"

"Iría si tengo ganas" is wrong. It should be "Iría si tuviera ganas". The other one with "Puede que..." is correct, though.

updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by lazarus1907
1
vote

So its as simple as using the conditional?

Well how would you say I might or might not help you.

Te ayudaría o no te ayudaría.

I looked up might in the dictionary(here) and it had this sentence as an example:

I might go if I feel like it

However it did not translate it as

"iría si tengo ganas" instead it translated as "puede que vaya si tengo ganas"

Te ayudaría o no te ayudaría - These translate to I would help you and I would not help you and do not imply any doubt as the word might suggests. I am sure that the subjunctive is necessary as has already been pointed out to you. I think Nathaniel´s use of Podria would simply mean I would be able to, which is not the same as I might be able to.

updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by Eddy
1
vote

So its as simple as using the conditional?
Well how would you say I might or might not help you.
Te ayudaría o no te ayudaría.

I looked up might in the dictionary(here) and it had this sentence as an example:
I might go if I feel like it
However it did not translate it as
"iría si tengo ganas" instead it translated as "puede que vaya si tengo ganas"

updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by ravensty
0
votes

¿Podría? That is the conditional of to be able to.

updated FEB 6, 2016
posted by Nathaniel
0
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Bueno, realmente, es algo que yo suelo hacer. Traducir "might" por "es probable que". Claro, ante la duda me he ido al diccionario a ver si ponía algún ejemplo, y el más parecido a "puede que" es este:

the house might not be big, but ? puede ser que la casa no sea grande, pero ?

Lo más parecido a esta frase es: puede que la casa no sea grande, pero ...

Parece que el diccionario te está dando la razón. La traducción es "puede que".

updated JUN 20, 2009
posted by nila45
0
votes

A mí me da buenos resultados cuando traduzco "might" por "es probable que". I might go to the party. (Es probable que vaya a la fiesta). Tiene el mismo sentido que "puede que". Como dijo Heidita antes. "Puede que vaya a la fiesta".

updated JUN 19, 2009
posted by nila45
0
votes

So its as simple as using the conditional?

Well how would you say I might or might not help you.

Te ayudaría o no te ayudaría.

I looked up might in the dictionary(here) and it had this sentence as an example:

I might go if I feel like it

However it did not translate it as

"iría si tengo ganas" instead it translated as "puede que vaya si tengo ganas"

Just for the record I know the "conditional phrases I wrote were wrong(in this context) I was just being sarcastic. I didn't believe that the conditional meant "might". I don't want people to comment on those conditional quotes all i needed was how to say might and heidita told me so the comments on those "conditional" quotes aren't necessary but thank you anyway.

updated JUN 19, 2009
posted by ravensty
0
votes

you are asserting/declaring the possibility (hence "puede") but not the helping (hence "ayude").

My thoughts exactly. Subjunctive is not used because it is the mood for doubts, but because the verb in the main sentence expresses doubt (i.e. puede, es posible que...).

Puede que venga.

Subjunctive is there only because you can't declare what you don't know, not because it expresses doubt itself.

Quiero que venga.

Is subjunctive used to express wishes, or is that "Quiero que..." that is expressing the wish?

No creo que venga.

Is subjunctive used to express uncertainty, or there is uncertainty because we say "No creo..."?

Me comeré lo que venga.

Is subjunctive also used to express hunger, perhaps'

updated JUN 19, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
0
votes

So its as simple as using the conditional?

Well how would you say I might or might not help you.

Te ayudaría o no te ayudaría.

I looked up might in the dictionary(here) and it had this sentence as an example:

I might go if I feel like it

However it did not translate it as

"iría si tengo ganas" instead it translated as "puede que vaya si tengo ganas"
I suspect that the most likely Spanish would be, simply, "puede que te ayude" If you insist on an explicit alternative, "es posible que te ayude o no". in either event, (to borrow Lazarus' terminology), you are asserting/declaring the possibility (hence "puede") but not the helping (hence "ayude").

updated JUN 18, 2009
posted by samdie
0
votes

Eddy!!!!! ¡a la esquina con cara a la pared! mad

Listen, I am so embarrassed I deleted it. I know the conjunctions but just got the wrong end of the stick.

pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan
pueda puedas pueda podamos podáis puedan

Please miss, I have done my lines. Can I now leave the corner.

updated JUN 18, 2009
posted by Eddy
0
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Eddy!!!!! ¡a la esquina con cara a la pared! mad

updated JUN 18, 2009
posted by 00494d19
0
votes

(yo) pueda is the first person present subjunctive. Puede is conjugated in the present 3rd person indicative. So y is it conjugated that way for puede que "I might"

updated JUN 18, 2009
posted by ravensty
0
votes

why not puedo que why is poder conjugated as puede.

updated JUN 18, 2009
posted by ravensty