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こんな嵐の中、まさかここまで郵便を届けにくるやつはいまい、と思っているにちがいない。
He was surely thinking that nobody would deliver mail here in a storm like this. (my TL)

I cannot work out what いまい is doing in this sentence.

I've come across まい as a negative volitional form before, but I'm assuming it is attached to the verb いる here and that doesn't seem like a verb you could make volitional.

To me it would make perfect sense if I replaced いまい with いない (is this true?), so maybe it's just a typo.

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  • Also, いる + 〜まい should become いるまい, not いまい.
    – Kaskade
    Mar 5, 2023 at 16:29
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    kotobank.jp/word/まい-632809
    – aguijonazo
    Mar 5, 2023 at 16:31
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    Does this answer your question? ~すまいて after a verb With 一段 verbs ~まい attaches to the 連用形 usually rather than the 終止形 (though I think that's still an option)
    – Angelos
    Mar 5, 2023 at 23:28
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    This まい is for negative inference, not negative volition, so it means the same thing as いないだろう.
    – naruto
    Mar 6, 2023 at 0:41
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    @Kaskade Here いまい and いるまい are interchangeable. The former is considered more tranditional or canonical, but in reality the latter is more common. See my answer in the link.
    – naruto
    Mar 6, 2023 at 0:41

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