This page is to help you choose between apology, apologise, apologises,
apologetic and apologies.
On this page: Grammar Notes and an Exercise.
Part of Speech
||Re: Apology for Late Delivery of Order #12345
||Please accept our apologies for the late delivery of this order.
|apologise / apologize
(The British spelling uses 's', and the American, 'z'.)
||"I apologise." "I forgive you."
I apologise for the late delivery of Order #12345.
I would like to apologise for the late delivery of Order #12345.
I am writing to apologise for the late delivery of Order #12345.
|apologises / apologizes
||third person verb
||She never apologises to her boyfriend for being late.
|apologised / apologized
||past tense verb
||The official apologised for his mistakes and offered his resignation.
|have / has apologised / apologized
||present perfect verb
||He has apologised and has been forgiven.
|am / is / are / was / were apologising / apologizing
||He was apologising for forgetting his speech when he realised that he
was in the wrong room.
|apologising / apologizing
||Apologising for things that are not your fault is a business skill.
||The complaining customer was very apologetic when he discovered that the
battery was inserted the wrong way round.
'Apologies' is also a heading in the minutes of a meeting, and is the heading
for the list of people who could not attend the meeting.
- - apologise for a problem; e.g. "I would like to apologise for these
- - apologise to a person; e.g. You should apologise to
customers if you make a mistake."
- - an apology from / by a person or an organisation; e.g. "This is an
apology from the member of staff involved."
If you get confused about the spelling at the ends of these words, you can use the
American English spelling for the verbs; e.g. I apologize / He apologizes. This
will help you to avoid confusing verbs with the plural noun apologies.
Read this situation, then do the following
You are an administrator for Exhibitions International, a
company which organises business exhibitions and trade fairs around the world.
You have received the following letter of complaint about your company's most
Flat 303 Lucky Mansions
856 Cheung Sha Wan Road
Cheung Sha Wan
The Administrative Officer
33 Kadoorie Avenue
I attended your exhibition Sound Systems
at the Fortune Hotel from
and found it informative and
interesting. Unfortunately, my enjoyment of the event was spoiled by a
number of organisational problems. I explain each of the problems below.
Firstly, I had difficulty in registering to attend the
event. You set up an on-line registration facility, but I found the facility
totally unworkable. Even after spending several wasted hours trying to
register in this way, the computer would not accept my application. I
eventually succeeded in registering by faxing you.
Secondly, the Sound Systems
exhibition was held at
one of Hong Kong's most prestigious hotels, but frankly the venue was better
suited to a medium-sized business conference than to a large exhibition open
by registration to the public. The lack of space led to serious overcrowding
in the venue, particularly at peak visiting times (i.e. lunch times and
early evening). On one or two occasions I was also seriously concerned about
the physical safety of attendees.
The final point I want to make concerns product
information. It is very enjoyable to see and test a range of excellent sound
systems, but it is also important to be able to take away leaflets on
interesting products, so that more research can be done before deciding
which system to buy. However, by the time I attended the exhibition all the
leaflets had been taken.
Could I please ask you to look into these matters - not
only on my behalf but also on behalf of other attendees, and in fact on
behalf of your company, too.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Choose the correct option from the drop-down boxes, then click the 'Show
Answers' button below: