“Could I borrow” と “May I borrow” の違い

“Could I borrow” と “May I borrow” の違い

090428David A.Thayneさんの『その英語、ネイティブにはこう聞こえます』からこんな例文をピックアップ。「メモリーカードを貸してください」 もし”Do you have a memory card”と言ってしまうとややカジュアルすぎ。”Could I borrow a memory card from you?”がお勧めの表現とのこと。では、May I borrow…はどうでしょうか?ETCのカーラ先生に質問してみました。

■出演 ・カーラ先生(ETCマンツーマン英会話)

■聞き手 ・青樹洋文


(David A.Thayne、小池信孝 著、主婦の友社 刊) 

番組 Transcript

(※ 出演者が話した言葉をそのままテキストにして掲載しています。)

It’s too much, I think. May I, you got be a little bit careful when you use that. It can be too much. You could. Of course it’s not bad to use that. But I think it’ll be a little bit funny. Too polite, strange.

Q: When do we use “May I”?

Again, I mean, it’s many different levels of that. But “may” is very polite. Also sometimes categorized people by different, like high stage or old person and so.

Q: Asking one’s name, “may I have your name” or “could I have your name”?

Could I have your name? Again it’s a range of politeness. But some times you can sounds very nice if you say “may I have your name”. If you are an immigration office, officer is very nice to say “may I have your name”. But maybe the officers feel like it’s more bit official person towards you, will say “so could I have a name”. That’s all.

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