LEVEL: Intermediate

TYPE OF ENGLISH: General English


APOLOGIES, EXCUSES AND PROMISES

When you do something wrong...

Study the following sentences. Try to guess the meaning of the words in bold and check below to see if you are right.
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Don't blame Tom for the mistake. It wasn't his fault.
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What excuse did he make for not doing his homework?
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I regret not finishing school. I could have a much better job now.
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I apologize for my lateness. The traffic was just awful.
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Daniela's boss asked her to explain why she was so late for work.
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Will you forgive me for forgetting your name again?

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imagesblame somebody for something

to say/think that a particular person is responsible for something bad or wrong that happened

imagesmake an excuse

to give a reason to explain why you did something wrong

imagesregret something

to feel sorry or disappointed about something that you wish could be different

imagesapologize for something

to say that you are sorry for doing something

imagesexplain something

to make something clearer and easier to understand by giving more details about it

imagesforgive somebody for something

to stop being angry with someone for something they have done

Apologies and excuses

Listen to the dialogues below and study how the expressions in bold are used to apologise, respond to an apology, make an excuse and promise action:

Dialogue 1
A: Sorry I'm late. I was held up at the airport.
B: That's OK. I've just arrived myself.

Dialogue 2
A: I apologize for my behaviour. I was under a lot of stress.
B: Never mind. I understand.

Dialogue 3
A: Sorry to keep you waiting. It won't happen again.
B: Don't worry about it.

Dialogue 4
A: I really am very sorry about this problem.
B: I should think so too! What you did was completely unacceptable.

Dialogue 5
A: Sorry about spilling coffee on your floor. I'll get a mop.
B: Oh, it doesn't matter. The cleaning lady will clean it up later.

Dialogue 5
A: We sincerely apologize for the late delivery.
B: I'm afraid that's not good enough! I expect some sort of discount.

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imagesMaking apologies

Sorry I'm late.
I apologize for my behaviour.
Sorry to keep you waiting.
I really am very sorry about this problem.
Sorry about spilling coffee on your floor.
We sincerely apologize for the late delivery.

imagesMaking excuses

I was held up at the airport.
I was under a lot of stress.

imagesAccepting apologies

That's OK.
Never mind.
Don't worry about it.
It doesn't matter.

imagesRejecting apologies

I should think so too!
I'm afraid that's not good enough!

imagesPromising action

It won't happen again.
I'll get a mop.

Promising action

Study the additional expressions in bold used for promising action. Which structure is used? Check below to see if you are right.
play
I'm sorry - I left your dictionary at home. I won't forget to bring it next time.
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I'm sorry for not calling you today. I'll give you a ring first thing tomorrow.
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Sorry about the mess I made in your kitchen. I'll clear it up.
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I apologize for breaking your window. I'll pay for the damage.
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I apologize for not informing you about the change of lesson time. I will make sure to contact you if it happens again.
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Sorry for losing the CD you lent me. I'll buy you a new one.

imagesWhen promising action, we often use ...

will/won’t + infinitive




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