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Be that as it may vs However it may be

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Lovelybeauty, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. Lovelybeauty

    Lovelybeauty Senior Member

    Vietnam
    Vietnamese
    Good evening,

    Would anyone please tell me what exactly is the meaning of the phrase "Be that as it may"? Is it the same as "However it may be"? Sorry I do not have any context because I'm studying Italian via English and some Italian phrase in the textbook is translated into this phrase. Some examples would be very helpful.

    Thanks a lot.
     
  2. morzh

    morzh Senior Member

    USA
    Russian
  3. Lovelybeauty

    Lovelybeauty Senior Member

    Vietnam
    Vietnamese
    Hello morzh,

    Thanks for the reply. So I guess "be that as it may" usually has the same meaning as "Even though/if it's true", doesn't it?

    Thanks again.
     
  4. morzh

    morzh Senior Member

    USA
    Russian
    "Even if it is true" - yes, the general meaning is the same.
     
  5. wandle

    wandle Senior Member

    London
    English - British
    'Be that as it may' means the same as 'however that may be'; in other words: 'regardless of how that matter really stands'.
    The speaker does not know, or does not wish to discuss, what the truth of that matter is, but wants to point out that something else is true anyway, regardless of the first matter.
     
  6. Lovelybeauty

    Lovelybeauty Senior Member

    Vietnam
    Vietnamese
    Very clear, my thank to both of you. :)
     
  7. Lovelybeauty

    Lovelybeauty Senior Member

    Vietnam
    Vietnamese
    Hi Jenni,

    Could you please make a sentence where it means "may be"?

    Thanks
     
  8. morzh

    morzh Senior Member

    USA
    Russian
    It does not really mean "may be". But it may be used where "may be" is used, with the meaning that is close enough (not exactly the same).

    - Mom, but he kicked me first!
    - Be that as it may, I asked you not to fight anymore! / May be, but I asked you not to fight anymore.


    The first one means stronger "I accept what you said to be the truth, but still...."
    The second is a bit less sure of the report being the truth, "You may be telling the truth, but still..."

    Close.
     
  9. Lovelybeauty

    Lovelybeauty Senior Member

    Vietnam
    Vietnamese
    In this case, shouldn't we use "Maybe" (no space)? Maybe, but I asked you etc...?
     
  10. morzh

    morzh Senior Member

    USA
    Russian
    "It may be so, but I still prefer apples to oranges".
    "Maybe, but I still prefer apples to oranges".

    We may be in a wrong place.
    Maybe, we are in a wrong place.

    The rule is, if you can substitute "may be / maybe" for "perhaps" - it is "maybe", otherwise - "may be".
     
  11. PaulQ

    PaulQ Senior Member

    UK
    English - England
    may be = (modal verb + bare infinitive)
    maybe = perhaps (adverb)
     
  12. Lovelybeauty

    Lovelybeauty Senior Member

    Vietnam
    Vietnamese
    Thank you. I'm well aware of that grammatical distinction, hence my question about that specific example, which I found strange. Would you please confirm which one to use in that case?
     

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