Definition of apologetic in US English:

apologetic

adjective

  • 1Regretfully acknowledging or excusing an offense or failure.

    ‘she was very apologetic about the whole incident’
    • ‘Her somewhat apologetic stance is overridden by her clear sense of feeling justified in what she is doing.’
    • ‘The shrug is hardly perceptible, the smile almost apologetic.’
    • ‘He gave her a smile that was almost apologetic, then he shrugged.’
    • ‘He is apologetic for his inability to produce snappy soundbites to sum up these feelings, but I'm glad: this is a heartfelt, uncontainable outburst.’
    • ‘Defending, the lawyer said his client was apologetic and very much regretted the incident.’
    • ‘‘As much as I would love to, I have already made plans, sorry,’ I said, giving him an apologetic smile.’
    • ‘When Skye glared at him, he tried an apologetic smile.’
    • ‘Liz's face altered from smiling and cheerful to regretful and apologetic.’
    • ‘I also took this approach because I was not apologetic about my creative product.’
    • ‘Richard didn't look apologetic in the least. - Why are you so formal?’
    • ‘"Don't be apologetic, Trunk."’
    • ‘She shoots me and my wife an apologetic look before smiling at the kids and closing the door.’
    • ‘The typist smiles to himself as the story returns like an apologetic lover, penitent, regretful and contrite.’
    • ‘He's immediately apologetic.’
    • ‘Diana huffed and I gave her an apologetic smile.’
    • ‘Trying his best to be polite without having too say too much, Phillip pushed his way through the crowd, giving apologetic smiles to indignant ladies being pushed.’
    • ‘An apologetic commuter-rail crew.’
    • ‘We are not apologetic about her choice.’
    • ‘For all the permutations that produced, the music seemed slightly apologetic.’
    • ‘The letter is written in an apologetic tone, apparently because the return of the books is overdue.’
    regretful, full of regret, sorry, contrite, remorseful, penitent, repentant, rueful, deprecatory, self-reproachful
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    1. 1.1 Of the nature of a formal defense or justification of something such as a theory or religious doctrine.
      ‘the apologetic proposition that production for profit is the same thing as production for need’
      • ‘The apologetic justification of church division has in many cases been a source of heated confessional intolerance.’
      • ‘Perhaps the most distasteful element of Romance is its attempt to justify its sexual explicitness with these vaguely apologetic ruminations on the mind/body split.’
      • ‘That is the apologetic sermon considering the situation of various religions.’
      • ‘There are not several types of sermons, for example, expository, historical, doctrinal, moral, apologetic, and topical.’
      • ‘In this essay, I wish to make a case for the proper order of discussion topics in the apologetic argument.’
      • ‘He proposed that the apologetic task is to show a person how their worldview contradicts their own common sense data, and how that data really fits within a Christian worldview.’

Origin

Late Middle English (as a noun denoting a formal justification): from French apologétique or late Latin apologeticus, from Greek apologētikos, from apologeisthei ‘speak in one's own defense’, from apologia (see apology). The current sense dates from the mid 19th century.

Pronunciation

apologetic

/əˌpäləˈjedik//əˌpɑləˈdʒɛdɪk/