dear me


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dear me

An expression of surprise or disappointment. Dear me, it seems I've forgotten the casserole I made for tonight's meeting.
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Dear me!

an expression of mild dismay or regret. Sue: Dear me, is this all there is? Mary: There's more in the kitchen. "Oh, dear me!" fretted John, "I'm late again."
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dear me

Also, oh dear. A polite exclamation expressing surprise, distress, sympathy, etc. For example, Dear me, I forgot to mail it, or Oh dear, what a bad time you've been having. These usages may originally have invoked God, as in dear God or oh God , which also continue to be so used. [Late 1600s]
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dear me

,

(dear,) oh dear

used for expressing worry, sympathy, concern, etc: Dear me! It’s started to rain and I’ve just hung out the washing!
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References in classic literature ?
Of a night when I was going upstairs to bed, she would invite me into her room, where she sat before the fire in a great chair; and, dear me, she would tell me about Morgan ap-Kerrig until I was quite low-spirited