From King Dictionary of Contemporary Englishldoce_750_zsorrysor‧ry /ˈsɒri $ ˈsɑːri, ˈsɔːri/ ●●●S1W2 adjective (comparative sorrier, superlative sorriest)1 →sorry/I’m sorry2ashamed [not before noun]REGRET/FEEL SORRY feeling ashamed or unhappy about something bad you have donesorry for somethingShe was genuinely sorry for what she had done.sorry (that)Casey was sorry he’d gotten so angry.say (you are) sorry (=tell someone that you feel bad about hurting them, causing problems etc)It was probably too late to say sorry, but she would try anyway.3 →sorry?4 →be/feel sorry for somebody5sad/disappointed [not before noun]DISAPPOINTED feeling sad about a situation, and wishing it were differentsorry (that)Brigid was always sorry she hadn’t kept up her piano lessons.sorry to do somethingWe were sorry to miss your concert.I won’t be sorry to leave this place.sorry to hear/see/learnI was sorry to hear about your accident.sorry aboutI’m so sorry about your father (=sorry something bad has happened to him).6 →you’ll be sorry7 →I’m sorry to say (that)8very bad [only before noun]BAD very bad, especially in a way that makes you feel pity or disapprovalthe sorry state of the environmentIt’s a sorry state of affairs when an old lady has to wait 12 hours to see a doctor.the sorry sight of so many dead animalsThis whole sorry episode (=bad thing that happened) shows just how incompetent the government has become. → better safe than sorryat safe1(10)GRAMMAR: Patterns with sorry• You are sorry about something bad that has happened: I’m sorry about what I said.I’m sorry about your car (=sorry that your car has been damaged).• You are sorry for the delay, the inconvenience, or the trouble: The next train will arrive in 12 minutes. We are sorry for the delay.• You are sorry for doing something bad: I’m sorry for upsetting you.• You are sorry that you did something or sorry that something happened: I’m sorry that I can’t come. ‘That’ can be omitted: I’m sorry you didn’t get the job.✗Don’t say: I’m sorry for I can’t come.• If you are sorry to do something, it makes you sad to do it: I’ll be sorry to leave this place.✗Don’t say: I’ll be sorry for leaving this place.
Examples from the Corpus
sorry• Oh, sorry, am I sitting in your chair?• Later he was sorry, and much later he was appreciative.• Sorry, but that part is out of stock.• Well, I'm sorry, but to me, drugs are just not funny.• This wholesorryepisode shows just how bad things have become.• But I can't feel sorry for him.• I feel sorry for the besotted, exhaustedbusinessmen, but it is the schoolkids on the train who break my heart.• I am sorryMa has missed this, she would have been proud of me.• The whole thing was a sorryspectacle.• Sir Oliver is sorry to hear that; but would he not be too smartly dressed to look like a money-lender?• Jim Maier was sorry to see him go.• Turn in your pink form - sorry, your green form - by tomorrow.say (you are) sorry• I always want to say sorry.• I want you to say you are sorry again to Jerb.• Everybody says sorry and life goes on - it's that banal.• The Churchsays sorry ... but vicar in graveyardrowsticks to his guns.• He said that while he deeply regretted the past he could not say sorry for the actions of others.• In his clumsy, fumbling way he needed to say sorry for what had happened at the club the night before.• He don't say sorry or nothing, even though he did it quite hard.sorry about• We're sorry about all the mess, Mom.• Sorry about that. I'll buy you a new one.sorry episode• Tories now fear, however, that the whole sorry episode has damaged the PrimeMinister too.• I still have the entiredocumentation of this sorry episode in my archive.sorry?sorry?spokenREPEAT used to ask someone to repeat something that you have not heard properlySYN pardonSorry? What was that again?‘Want a drink?’ ‘Sorry?’ ‘I said, would you like a drink?’ →sorry
Examples from the Corpus
sorry?• Sorry? What was the last point?OriginsorryOld Englishsarig, from sar ( → SORE1); influenced by sorrow)