WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
re•gret /rɪˈgrɛt/USA pronunciation
v., -gret•ted, -gret•ting,n.
to feel sorrow or remorse for (an act, fault, event, etc.): [~ + object]said he did not regret his decision to retire.[~ + verb-ing]The thief said he regretted stealing the money.[~ + (that) clause]He regrets that he cannot be here in person tonight.
[not: be + ~-ing; ~ + to + verb] (used in the present tense to express sorrow):We regret to inform you that the train will be late.
a feeling of sorrow, unhappiness, or guilt for a fault, wrong act, a loss, etc.: [uncountable]a sudden pang of regret.[countable]had no regrets.
regrets, [plural] a polite, usually formal refusal of an invitation:sent my regrets.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
regret /rɪˈɡrɛt/ vb ( -grets, -gretting, -gretted)(transitive)
- (may take a clause as object or an infinitive) to feel sorry, repentant, or upset about
- to bemoan or grieve the death or loss of
Etymology: 14th Century: from Old French regrete, of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Norse grāta to weepreˈgretful adj reˈgretfully adv reˈgretfulness n reˈgrettable adj reˈgrettably adv USAGE
- a sense of repentance, guilt, or sorrow, as over some wrong done or an unfulfilled ambition
- a sense of loss or grief
- (plural) a polite expression of sadness, esp in a formal refusal of an invitation
Regretful and regretfully are sometimes wrongly used where regrettable and regrettably are meant: he gave a regretful smile; he smiled regretfully; this is a regrettable (not regretful) mistake; regrettably (not regretfully), I shall be unable to attend
'regret' also found in these entries: