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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
an expression of regret
▪ The military has not offered any expression of regret over the civilian loss of life.
murmur of agreement/surprise/regret etc (=one that expresses a particular feeling)
▪ There was a murmur of agreement from the crowd.
pang of jealousy/guilt/remorse/regret
▪ She felt a sudden pang of guilt.
regret a decision (=wish you had not made a particular decision)
▪ I was already regretting my decision to go on holiday with him.
▪ It was an agreement that Lear was to regret bitterly in later years.
▪ Many who have left the Association already bitterly regret it.
▪ They had rushed into it too quickly, and lived to bitterly regret their impulsiveness.
▪ I deeply regret that I was unable to have a word with the housekeeper when she was more collected in mind.
▪ It read: The Governor deeply regrets you were inconvenienced by Mr Dach, a member of his advance team.
▪ But when this was over, Eleanor would deeply regret that she had tried to interfere with his personal life.
▪ He communicates less and less with his wife, who now deeply regrets the entire affair.
▪ We deeply regret the death of this noble person.
▪ Fitzroy said they would greatly regret losing me but understood my reasons.
▪ Do you ever regret taking this job?
▪ I regret to say that a number of statements made by the department were incorrect.
▪ I have always regretted giving up my piano lessons.
▪ I think she regrets now that she never went to college.
▪ It was a stupid thing to say, and I immediately regretted it.
▪ The airport announced that due to bad weather all flights were cancelled, and they regretted any inconvenience this would cause.
▪ The management regrets to inform you that your contract will not be renewed next month.
▪ The owners said they regretted the decision to close the store, but felt unable to do otherwise.
▪ The Public Health ministry said it deeply regretted the error.
▪ We truly regret any inconvenience this mistake caused you.
▪ A shy smile hinted that he did not entirely regret it.
▪ I have definitely chosen and I don't regret me choice.
▪ I instantly regret my indiscretion and beg him to keep the news to himself.
▪ That was a name he was already beginning to regret.
▪ We also read about women who tried to do something and failed and now regret that they even tried.
▪ With deep regret he decided that he would have to abort his part of the mission.
▪ It was with deep regret that I had to leave for home later that evening.
▪ He has contemplated suicide, he says; he feels deep regret about the death.
▪ As you know, you have always had my warm personal support, and I accepted your decision with deep regret.
▪ The government has done so with the deepest regret.
▪ Rattigan's great professional regret was the failure of his 1949 play based on Alexander the Great, Adventure Story.
▪ My greatest regret in life was abandoning Amanda, my calico.
▪ It was a great regret to me that our partnership was to come to an end.
▪ It is with great personal regret that I have come to this conclusion.
▪ My great regret was that I never recorded with Busch.
▪ With great regret they decided to abandon the project in view of the ever-increasing cost.
▪ The tone of Tithonus' words seem to be of great regret and self lamenting.
▪ President Afeworki expressed his regret at their deaths and insisted they were not intentional.
▪ I know of not a single surgeon who ever expressed any regret over these women or apologized to one of them.
▪ As reported last month four boys have been suspended for unacceptable behaviour and have expressed no regret for their actions.
▪ When he retired, several civil rights leaders expressed regret.
▪ Yet all the while she spoke with me, she never made a sound nor expressed any sadness or regret.
▪ Many of these men expressed regret at what they had done as soon as they were sober.
sb will live to regret it
▪ He may think leaving his wife for the other woman is a good idea, but he'll live to regret it.
▪ If you put all your money in this real estate deal, I guarantee you'll live to regret it.
▪ "I was too young to know what I was doing," said Martha with a deep sigh of regret.
▪ Her biggest regret is that she turned down a job with Gardner's in 1985.
▪ I knew that if I didn't make a clean break with Victor I should be filled with regrets for the rest of my life.
▪ Jason detected a note of regret in her voice.
▪ My main regret is that I never finished my college degree.
▪ My one regret is that I never visited the Taj Mahal when I was in India.
▪ Officers expressed regret about the boy's death.
▪ A life for a telegram from the War Department stating regret.
▪ But he insists regret should never make a footballer compromise on toughness.
▪ Did he feel regret, and if so, did he allow anyone to see it?
▪ His only regret was that he could not drive, because of his epilepsy.
▪ Mchboob looked disappointed; his whole face relaxed into regret.
▪ She looked at him a moment as if there were some kind of regret or shame fighting it out inside of her.
▪ There was regret in his voice.
▪ Warnod had to decline, to his later regret.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Regret \Re*gret"\ (r?*gr?t"), n. [F., fr. regretter. See Regret, v.]

  1. Pain of mind on account of something done or experienced in the past, with a wish that it had been different; a looking back with dissatisfaction or with longing; grief; sorrow; especially, a mourning on account of the loss of some joy, advantage, or satisfaction. ``A passionate regret at sin.''
    --Dr. H. More.

    What man does not remember with regret the first time he read Robinson Crusoe?

    Never any prince expressed a more lively regret for the loss of a servant.

    From its peaceful bosom [the grave] spring none but fond regrets and tender recollections.
    --W. Irving.

  2. Dislike; aversion. [Obs.]
    --Dr. H. More.

    Syn: Grief; concern; sorrow; lamentation; repentance; penitence; self-condemnation.

    Usage: Regret, Remorse, Compunction, Contrition, Repentance. Regret does not carry with it the energy of remorse, the sting of compunction, the sacredness of contrition, or the practical character of repentance. We even apply the term regret to circumstance over which we have had no control, as the absence of friends or their loss. When connected with ourselves, it relates rather to unwise acts than to wrong or sinful ones.
    --C. J. Smith.


Regret \Re*gret"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Regretted (-t[e^]d); p. pr. & vb. n. Regretting.] [F. regretter, OF. regreter; L. pref. re- re- + a word of Teutonic origin; cf. Goth. gr[=e]tan to weep, Icel. gr[=a]t

  1. See Greet to lament.] To experience regret on account of; to lose or miss with a sense of regret; to feel sorrow or dissatisfaction on account of (the happening or the loss of something); as, to regret an error; to regret lost opportunities or friends.

    Calmly he looked on either life, and here Saw nothing to regret, or there to fear.

    In a few hours they [the Israelites] began to regret their slavery, and to murmur against their leader.

    Recruits who regretted the plow from which they had been violently taken.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"to look back with distress or sorrowful longing; to grieve for on remembering," late 14c., from Old French regreter "long after, bewail, lament someone's death; ask the help of" (Modern French regretter), from re-, intensive prefix (see re-), + -greter, possibly from Frankish or some other Germanic source (compare Old English grætan "to weep;" Old Norse grata "to weep, groan"), from Proto-Germanic *gretan "weep." "Not found in other Romance languages, and variously explained" [Century Dictionary].\n

\nRelated: Regretted; regretting. Replaced Old English ofþyncan, from of- "off, away," here denoting opposition, + þyncan "seem, seem fit" (as in methinks).


"pain or distress in the mind at something done or left undone," 1530s, from the verb, or from Middle French regret, back-formation from regreter (see regret (v.)).


n. 1 Emotional pain on account of something done or experienced in the past, with a wish that it had been different; a looking back with dissatisfaction or with longing. 2 (context obsolete English) Dislike; aversion. vb. To feel sorry about (a thing that has or has not happened), afterthink: to wish that a thing had not happened, that something else had happened instead.

  1. v. feel remorse for; feel sorry for; be contrite about [syn: repent, rue]

  2. feel sad about the loss or absence of

  3. decline formally or politely; "I regret I can't come to the party"

  4. be sorry; "I regret to say that you did not gain admission to Harvard"

  5. [also: regretting, regretted]

  1. n. sadness associated with some wrong done or some disappointment; "he drank to drown his sorrows"; "he wrote a note expressing his regret"; "to his rue, the error cost him the game" [syn: sorrow, rue, ruefulness]

  2. [also: regretting, regretted]

Regret (horse)

Regret (April 2, 1912 – April 11, 1934) was a famous American thoroughbred racehorse and the first of three fillies to ever win the Kentucky Derby .

Regret (disambiguation)

Regret is a negative conscious and emotional reaction to personal past acts and behaviors. Regret or Regrets may also refer to:

Regret (The Gazette song)

"Regret" is a maxi-single by The Gazette. It was released as two different types: the Optical Impression and Auditory Impression, the first coming with a DVD with the music video for the song "Regret", and the second with a bonus track.

Regret (decision theory)

Regret is the negative emotion experienced when learning that an alternative course of action would have resulted in a more favorable outcome. The theory of regret aversion or anticipated regret proposes that when facing a decision, individuals may anticipate the possibility of feeling regret after the uncertainty is resolved and thus incorporate in their choice their desire to eliminate or reduce this possibility.

Regret (Mai Hoshimura song)

"Regret" is the 13th single by Japanese singer Mai Hoshimura, released on June 4, 2008, on the SMEJ label. The title track was used as the seventh ending theme for the anime series D.Gray-man. The single peaked at number 30 and charted for four weeks in the Oricon charts. The coupling "Sakura Biyori x Kotaro Oshio" is an acoustic version of her previous-released song "Sakura Biyori".

This single's catalog number is SECL-643.

Regret (album)

Regret is the first compilation album by Japanese music production unit I've Sound and volume one in their Girls Compilation album series. Released on December 24, 1999, the album is a collection of songs they have produced for various adult PC games. It features vocals by Aki, Ayana, Eiko Shimamiya, Mary, Mell, Mihi, Miki and R.I.E.

Regret (New Order song)

"Regret" is a song by British alternative rock band New Order. It was released in April 1993 as the lead single from their album of the same year, Republic. Stephen Hague is credited as both the producer and as a co-writer. It was also the first single released under London Records following the collapse of Factory Records.

The single was released in a variety of formats around the world. The B-side of the single differed in the various releases, but all were remixes of "Regret", including the " Fire Island Mix", and "Junior Dub" by Pete Heller and Terry Farley, and two Sabres of Paradise mixes. Peter Care directed a music video for the song; the video appears on the "Regret" promotional VHS, as well as a DVD collection.

In 2010 Pitchfork Media included the song at number 34 on their Top 200 Tracks of the 90s. Peter Hook has said that “Regret” was the last good New Order song.


Regret is a negative conscious and emotional reaction to personal past acts and behaviors. Regret is often a feeling of sadness, shame, embarrassment, depression, annoyance, or guilt, after one acts in a manner and later wishes not to have done so. Regret is distinct from guilt, which is a deeply emotional form of regret — one which may be difficult to comprehend in an objective or conceptual way. In this regard, the concept of regret is subordinate to guilt in terms of its emotional intensity. By comparison, shame typically refers to the social (rather than personal) aspect of guilt or (in minor context) regret as imposed by the society or culture (enforcement of ethics, morality), which has substantial bearing in matters of (personal and social) honor.

It is also distinct from remorse, which is more direct and emotional form of regret over a past action that is considered by society to be hurtful, shameful, or violent. Unlike regret, it includes a strong element of desire for apology to others rather than an internal reflection on one's actions, and may be expressed (sincerely or not) in order to reduce the punishment one receives.

Regret can describe not only the dislike for an action that has been committed, but also, importantly, regret of inaction. Many people find themselves wishing that they had done something in a past situation.

Regret (LeToya Luckett song)

"Regret" is the third single from LeToya Luckett's second solo album, Lady Love (2009), and features rapper Ludacris. Although a music video was not initially released to promote the single, it quickly moved up the Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart peaking at #8, becoming her fourth top twenty hit on that chart. It peaked at #78 on the Billboard's Hot 100 chart, (her second chart entry on the Hot 100). The song became her second most successful single of her solo career, behind her debut single " Torn". The officially released remix (Sky High remix) was released to iTunes, while a remix with new lyrics and production, and a feature from rapper Missy Elliott leaked to the internet.

Regret (Everything Everything song)

"Regret" is a song from British indie pop band Everything Everything. The track was released in the United Kingdom on 29 April 2015 as the second single from the band's third upcoming studio album, Get to Heaven. The song premiered as BBC Radio 1 DJ Annie Mac's Hottest Record in the World on 29 April 2015.

Usage examples of "regret".

Now, sir, there is in this so much assumption of facts and so much of menace as to consequences, that I cannot submit to answer that note any further than I have, and to add that the consequences to which I suppose you allude would be matter of as great regret to me as it possibly could to you.

I very much hope that you will regret yours, Mrs Mitchell, trying to humiliate my mother as a way to annoy me.

Sir William Wyndham died the preceding year, deeply regretted as an orator, a patriot, and a man, the constant assertor of British liberty, and one of the chief ornaments of the English nation.

But she was wrong: despite the disappointment that each of them felt, despite his regret for his clumsiness and her remorse for the madness of the anisette, they were not apart for a moment in the days that followed.

He sipped his anisette, regretting that the proprietor had served it to him in such an ugly tumbler.

Lusena had never regretted these fifteen years, though now and then both Bardy and Finnan had unkind words about her dedication.

Whether she regretted having given him as much encouragement as lay in a rose dropped from her corsage, or whether she resented the introduction into the party of so unprepossessing a gentleman as Mr Gumley, no one could tell, but although she relented towards him from time to time, even allowing her hand to rest in his for a moment longer than was necessary when he handed her down from the barouche, she was for the most part a little pettish in her manner, and made it plain that he could do nothing to please her.

If this is so do not regret them, for they have enabled you to learn the first of your lessons: no bedin may speak in the presence of hizahh, save at their command, and then only in the prescribed manner.

If Beryn does manage to dispose of me, Cadlew will inherit through Ylaena, and Beryn will regret the day he ever made an enemy out of my friend.

He had not one regret at leaving the bespangled suit, for it was the best he could command, and surely nothing could be too good for Mr.

Do not try being a Blamer at me because I am bigger and more powerful than you and I will see to it that you regret it.

Leaning her forehead against the cool iron railing, Bree released the tidal wave of regret, for the horrific present, for the loss of the past.

Watching, Brek Veronar felt a little stir of involuntary pride, a dim numbness of regret.

The massive reef in the distance, perceptible in the dark, that gigantic base of my tomb so newly begun on the banks of the Tiber, suggested to me no regret at the moment, no terror nor vain meditation upon the brevity of life.

Venier expressed his deep regret at not being able to make his acquaintance.