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    Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #116902: Vocabulary: Sorry! (Let's apologise!)
    > Other English exercises on the same topics: Frequent mistakes | Idioms | Politeness [Change theme]
    > Similar tests: - Placement test beginners: Check your spelling - Vocabulary: greeting people - Past simple or present perfect - Although / in spite of / despite - Again/ back - FOR and its use - Differences between Like and As - Bill, tip, fare, fine, fee
    > Double-click on words you don't understand


    Vocabulary: Sorry! (Let's apologise!)


    If you've ever been to Great Britain, you must have experienced and checked what is "being polite" the British way! British people often apologise and they do it a lot: after doing something wrong, after upsetting someone, in order to sympathise with someone and share their pain, and even sometimes (as if it were a reflex) when someone is upsetting or disturbing them.

     

     

     

    I) SORRY!  is the "magical word", the word which is going to be uttered again and again, adding adjectives or adverbs to it in order to make it stronger and more convincing. 

     

                              

     

     

     I'm sorry I'm late! / I'm sorry to hear that!  
     I'm so sorry!/ I'm very sorry I didn't come to your party! 
     I'm terribly sorry...! / I'm extremely/ genuinely sorry... 
     I can't say how sorry I am for betraying your secret...

     

     

                                                    

                                                                                                                                                            Please, forgive me...        

     II) It's possible to apologise to someone without uttering the word: "SORRY"...  

     

        ** Blaming yourself in front of the person you have hurt...  

     How careless of me, I'm so clumsy... I've just broken a glass...  
     I shouldn't have shouted at you yesterday... 
     It's all my fault if we missed the train...

     

        ** really asking to be forgiven...

     Please, don't be mad at me, I have to cancel our plans, but... 
     I hope you can forgive me for upsetting you yesterday... 
     I owe you an apology... 

                                                 

     

    III) More formal excuses are written:  (in formal business situations or emails)

     I apologise for the delay in replying to your email.  
     Please, accept my sincere apologies for the mistake... 
     I take full responsibility for any problem I may have caused... 
     There's no excuse for my behaviour...
     My comments to your project were ill-advised... 

     

                                                                   

     

    IV) Less formal, or frankly informal EXCUSES

     Whoops! Sorry! 
     Sorry 'bout that! 
     Oh, my bad...
     My fault, bro... 

     

                                                                                                               

     

    V) To predict a later disturbance, a discomfort, or require people's attention! Native English-speakers (especially in Canada) say "SORRY" when they're not apologising. Sometimes, they announce a future disturbance, a discomfort, or are requiring people's attention.  NORMALLY, THEY SHOULD USE:

     Excuse me, please...
     Pardon me, I'll pass you...  
     I beg your pardon, can you repeat, please?  
     Excuse me, could you repeat, please? 

     

                                                                                                       

     

    As we can see, we're spending a lot of our time apologising for what we're doing, or have done... 

    A sentence from Eric Segal's Love Story, a reference... Jenny said to Oliver who will later repeat it to his own father: "Love means not ever having to say you're sorry!"...   Radical, absolute, but to be meditated on... 

    Good luck, for the test...   and really sorry...   for boring you! 

     

     



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    1. ' can you help me move that huge box, please? It's too heavy for me and I can't lift it.'

    2. 'Really, , I shouldn't have insisted so much and you had a right to decline.'

    3. 'When I think about it, really, my standing you up last Saturday! I could and should have texted you I was stuck at the airport...'

    4. ' One egg: good! Two eggs, oh dear, I've dropped it Mom... . I'm so clumsy...' 'It's OK! Let's clean it up...'

    5. ' Sir,.... for the mistake in our latest delivery.... '

    6. 'Really, Robert, ... l shouldn't have expected such late hours from anyone... I hadn't realized it was a huge work... '

    7. ' Jesse, the way I snapped back yesterday. I'll be careful to be more understanding...'

    8. 'Yes, well, err... your feelings... ... so abrupt and final. ?'

     

                                                                     











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