I'm afraid

I'm afraid

Used to politely introduce some news that may be unpleasant, upsetting, or disappointing. I'm afraid that your application has been rejected due to a failure to provide adequate documentation. I was hoping I'd be there in time to see the performance, but they canceled my flight because of the snow, I'm afraid.
See also: afraid

I’m afraid (that)...

(spoken) used as a polite way of telling somebody something that is unpleasant or disappointing, or something that you are sorry about: I’m afraid I can’t come to your party.‘Have you got change for ten pounds?’ ‘I’m afraid not.’I’ve got some bad news, I’m afraid.‘Is this the best you can do?’ ‘I’m afraid so.’
References in classic literature ?
He felt that if they had both not kept up appearances, but had spoken, as it is called, from the heart--that is to say, had said only just what they were thinking and feeling--they would simply have looked into each other's faces, and Konstantin could only have said, "You're dying, you're dying," and Nikolay could only have answered, "I know I'm dying, but I'm afraid, I'm afraid, I'm afraid
I'd send a messenger to the King only I'm afraid they'd kill him.
I tell you what, Ned, I'm afraid it hasn't been all right with Reuben.
If not, I'm afraid I can offer him no better explanation; and in fact I am all impatience to open my knapsack, and inform myself of the name of her to the discovery of whom my wanderings are henceforth to be devoted.
It can't do any harm, anyhow," said Peter, "but I'm afraid you've left it too late.
But it seems as if part of me was buried over there in that little harbor graveyard-- and it hurts so much that I'm afraid of life.
Chilton better, and I'm afraid he'd feel hurt if I didn't have him.
They don't teach you things at school that are much use in business, I'm afraid.
I'm afraid I must be very dull; but I really do not understand.
That was a rough tumble, and I'm afraid you must be damaged somewhere," answered the Doctor, full of fond anxiety, as he surveyed his girl with pride.
Ah, it's all very well to defy them, but you are getting so rampant, I'm afraid you will defy me next, and then where are we?
Perhaps after a while I'll get used to it, but I'm afraid concerts spoil people for everyday life.
I'm afraid I think too much about my nose ever since I heard that compliment about it long ago.
Yes, I'm afraid the grief cuts very deep," said Mr.
I'm afraid you have too little fellow-feeling in what you consider his weakness about Hetty.