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English definition of “sorry”

sorry

adjective  /ˈsɑr·i, ˈsɔr·i/ us  

sorry adjective (ASKING FORGIVENESS)

feeling bad because you have caused trouble or difficulty to someone else: [+ (that) clause] I’m really sorry (that) I forgot about our appointment yesterday. Sorry is also used as a polite way to show your sympathy to someone because of a loss, problem, or trouble the person has had: [+ to infinitive] We were sorry to learn about the death of your grandmother. Sorry is also used as a polite way of asking someone to excuse you for having done something that might have annoyed the person: The train will be moving shortly – we are sorry for the inconvenience.

sorry adjective (POLITE REFUSAL)

used as a polite way of expressing refusal or disagreement: I’m sorry, but I think you’ve made a mistake in our check. Sorry, you can’t go in there.

sorry adjective (BAD CONDITION)

[-er/-est only] dated so bad as to cause feelings of sympathy: They were a sorry sight, dressed in rags and so weak they could hardly stand up. Note: describing a situation or condition
(Definition of sorry from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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