Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I encountered this phrase in a novel I'm reading, and I think I've heard it before. What does it mean?

share|improve this question
add comment

4 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

That's as may be means that what the speaker says may be true, but it doesn't change your argument or opinion as it is not strictly relevant, or other facts need to be taken into consideration; I can't find any reference for it online but a phrase with a similar meaning is be that as it may.

share|improve this answer
    
Not sure about trustworthiness, still wiki.answers.com/Q/What_does_that%27s_as_may_be_mean –  rest_day May 27 '11 at 21:16
1  
@rest_day, I'd agree with their conclusion, but I wouldn't put too much weight on the citation. –  Brian Hooper May 27 '11 at 21:23
1  
I'm also of the understanding that it's most common in U.K. English and least used in U.S. English. The example that always springs to my mind is from the Monty Python comedy sketch, "Crunchy Frog": "We use only the finest baby frogs, dew-picked and flow from Iraq, cleansed in the finest quality spring water, lightly killed, and sealed in a succulent Swiss quintuple-smooth treble-milk chocolate envelope, and lovingly frosted with glucose." "That's as may be, but it's still a frog!" –  L2G Mar 21 '13 at 22:23
add comment

A rough equivalent would be "that may be the situation, but...".

To use it in a context,

You: "I do not have transportation today."

Boss: "That's as may be, I want you in office in 10 minutes."

share|improve this answer
add comment

An alternative would be:

That may be the case, but...

It usually means that the speaker/writer is acknowledging something, but is about to explain why it may be irrelevant to the matter in hand.

share|improve this answer
2  
The phrase implies a big dose of "BUT" at the end, "That may be the case BUT ..... " –  mgb May 27 '11 at 20:55
add comment

It means that while the speaker agrees with some premise in the conversational context s/he doesn't think that premise excludes the fact/thing/argument s/he is speaking about.

"Hitler was a vegetarian" "That's as may be, but he was still a psychopath."

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.