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[per-haps] /pərˈhæps/
maybe; possibly:
Perhaps the package will arrive today.
Origin of perhaps
1520-30; earlier perhappes, perhapis by haps. See per, hap1, -s1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for perhaps
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Hope is perhaps inseparable from the existence of the passion of love.

  • perhaps you already know that Anaxagoras fell asleep in Ionia.

    Philothea Lydia Maria Child
  • But perhaps as a—well, as a father, for instance— That bright boy of theirs now.

    Love and Lucy Maurice Henry Hewlett
  • In the course of this process he fell into adventures, some of them, perhaps, unedifying.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • The Landscape with Ruins (No. 746) is perhaps the finest of the others there.

    Six Centuries of Painting Randall Davies
British Dictionary definitions for perhaps


/pəˈhæps; informal præps/
  1. possibly; maybe
  2. (as sentence modifier): he'll arrive tomorrow, perhaps, perhaps you'll see him tomorrow
sentence substitute
it may happen, be so, etc; maybe
Word Origin
C16 perhappes, from per by + happes chance, hap1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for perhaps

1520s, formed from Middle English per, par "by, through" (see per-) + plural of hap "chance" (see happen), on model of peradventure, perchance, etc. which now have been superseded by this word. Perhappons "possibly, by chance" is recorded from late 15c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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