Perhaps | English Usage
Perhaps and maybe have the same meaning. Perhaps is more formal than maybe.
Perhaps is used to suggest that you are not certain about something.
- Perhaps we have met before.
- Perhaps she missed the train.
- Perhaps she made a mistake.
- Perhaps he was angry.
- She was perhaps the oldest among them.
Perhaps is also used when you are simply guessing a number or an amount.
- There were perhaps twenty girls in the class.
- She is perhaps eighty.
Perhaps in polite requests
Perhaps is often used to make a suggestion or a request sound more polite.
- Perhaps you should hire a professional to fix that.
- She doesn’t look well – perhaps she should consult a doctor.
- I don’t know how to use this fax machine. Perhaps you could help.
- Perhaps you could offer an explanation.