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a·pol·o·gy (ə-pŏlə-jē)
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n. pl. a·pol·o·gies
1. An acknowledgment expressing regret or asking pardon for a fault or offense: Please accept my apology for being so late.
2.
a. A formal justification or defense.
b. An explanation or excuse: "The consequence of those measures will be the best apology for my conduct" (Daniel Defoe).
3. An inferior substitute: The sagging cot was a poor apology for a bed.

[Latin apologia, from Greek apologiā : apo-, apo- + logos, speech; see leg- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

Synonyms: apology, apologia, defense, justification
These nouns denote a statement that excuses or defends something, such as a past action or a policy: Their arguments amounted to an apology for capital punishment. The senators' apologia explained why they changed their position. We produced evidence in defense of the policy. Reducing energy costs was our main justification for replacing the windows.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

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