May is the fifth month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian Calendars and the third of seven months to have a length of 31 days.
May is a month of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and autumn in the Southern Hemisphere. Therefore, May in the Southern Hemisphere is the seasonal equivalent of November in the Northern Hemisphere and vice versa. Late May typically marks the start of the summer vacation season in the United States and Canada and ends on Labor Day, the first Monday of September.
To know how to; to be able to.
“She can speak English, French, and German.”
“I can play football.”
“Can you remember your fifth birthday?”
May; to be permitted or enabled to.
“You can go outside and play when you’re finished with your homework.”
“Can I use your pen?”
To have the potential to; be possible.
“Can it be Friday already?”
“Teenagers can really try their parents’ patience.”
“Animals can experience emotions.”
(auxiliary verb, defective) Used with verbs of perception.
To seal in a can.
“They canned air to sell as a novelty to tourists.”
To preserve by heating and sealing in a jar or can.
“They spent August canning fruit and vegetables.”
To discard, scrap or terminate (an idea, project, etc.).
“He canned the whole project because he thought it would fail.”
To shut up.
“Can your gob.”
To fire or dismiss an employee.
“The boss canned him for speaking out.”
A more or less cylindrical vessel for liquids, usually of steel or aluminium, but sometimes of plastic, and with a carrying handle over the top.
A container used to carry and dispense water for plants (a watering can).
A tin-plate canister, often cylindrical, for preserved foods such as fruit, meat, or fish.
A chamber pot, now a toilet or lavatory.
“Shit or get off the can.”
“Bob’s in the can. You can wait a few minutes or just leave it with me.”
Jail or prison.
“Bob’s in the can. He won’t be back for a few years.”
A drinking cup.
A cube-shaped buoy or marker used to denote a port-side lateral mark
A chimney pot.
To be strong; to have power (over). 8th–17th c.
To be able; can. 8th–17th c.
To be able to go. from 9th c.
To have permission to, be allowed. Used in granting permission and in questions to make polite requests. from 9th c.
“you may smoke outside;”
“may I sit there?”
Expressing a present possibility; possibly. from 13th c.
“he may be lying;”
“Schrödinger’s cat may or may not be in the box”
Expressing a wish (with present subjunctive effect). from 16th c.
“may you win;”
“may the weather be sunny”
Used in modesty, courtesy, or concession, or to soften a question or remark.
To gather may, or flowers in general.
To celebrate May Day.
The hawthorn bush or its blossoms.
be able to
“he can’t afford it”
“they can run fast”
“I could hear footsteps”
be able to through acquired knowledge or skill
“I can speak Italian”
have the opportunity or possibility to
“there are many ways holidaymakers can take money abroad”
used to express doubt or surprise about the possibility of something’s being the case
“where can she have gone?”
“he can’t have finished”
used to indicate that something is typically the case
“he could be very moody”
“antique clocks can seem out of place in modern homes”
be permitted to
“you can use the phone if you want to”
“nobody could legally drink on the premises”
used to request someone to do something
“can you open the window?”
“can’t you leave me alone?”
used to make a suggestion or offer
“we can have another drink if you like”
preserve (food) in a can
“sardines and anchovies are worth the extra money if canned in olive oil”
dismiss from a job
“he was canned because of a tiff over promotion”
reject as inadequate
“they canned the project”
a cylindrical metal container
“a can of paint”
“a petrol can”
a small steel or aluminium container in which food or drink is hermetically sealed for storage over long periods
“a beer can”
the quantity of food or drink held by a can
“he drank two cans of lager”
“our friends will get a year or two in the can”
“she walks in and has to use the can”
a woman’s breasts.
“that may be true”
“he may well win”
used when admitting that something is so before making another, more important point
“they may have been old-fashioned but they were excellent teachers”
used to ask for or to give permission
“may I ask a few questions?”
“you may confirm my identity with your Case Officer, if you wish”
expressing a wish or hope
“may she rest in peace”
the fifth month of the year, in the northern hemisphere usually considered the last month of spring
“the full system was deployed last May”
“the new model makes its showroom debut in May”
one’s bloom or prime
“others murmured that their May was passing”