What is the antonym of “may”?
The antonyms of may are must not, cannot, and should not. These antonyms convey a sense of prohibition or impossibility, indicating that something is not allowed or cannot be done.
Brief Definitions of the Antonym(s)
Learn when and how to use these words with these examples!
Expressing a prohibition or strong obligation not to do something.
You must not smoke in this area.
Expressing an inability or impossibility to do something.
I cannot attend the meeting tomorrow due to a prior commitment.
Expressing advice or a recommendation against doing something.
You should not eat too much junk food if you want to stay healthy.
How are these antonyms different from each other?
- 1Must not indicates a strong prohibition or obligation not to do something.
- 2Cannot indicates an inability or impossibility to do something.
- 3Should not indicates advice or a recommendation against doing something.
Good things to know
- 1Rules and Regulations: Use must not to indicate a strong prohibition in official documents or signs.
- 2Limitations and Constraints: Use cannot to express inability or impossibility in personal or professional contexts.
- 3Advice and Suggestions: Use should not to provide recommendations or advice in conversations or written communication.
The antonyms of may convey a sense of prohibition or impossibility. Must not indicates a strong prohibition or obligation, cannot indicates an inability or impossibility, and should not indicates advice or a recommendation against doing something. Use these antonyms to communicate rules and regulations, limitations and constraints, and advice and suggestions effectively.