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I beg your pardon

1. I apologize for what I just did or said. Oh, I beg your pardon. I wasn't looking where I was going.
2. What did you just say? Could you please repeat that? I beg your pardon, I couldn't quite hear you.
3. An expression or exclamation of indignation or incredulous disbelief. A: "I'm afraid we're going to have to cut your funding, effective immediately." B: "I beg your pardon? Who on earth decided that?"
4. Could you please give me your attention. I beg your pardon, everyone, but I'd like to get tonight's proceedings underway.
5. I believe you are mistaken or incorrect; I beg to differ; I don't agree with you on that. I beg your pardon, but I believe you'll find that our school is actually one of the best in the state.
See also: beg, pardon

beg to differ (with someone)

Fig. to disagree with someone; to state one's disagreement with someone in a polite way. (Usually used in a statement made to the person being disagreed with.) I beg to differ with you, but you have stated everything exactly backwards. If I may beg to differ, you have not expressed my position as well as you seem to think.
See also: beg, differ

Excuse me.

 and Excuse, please.; Pardon (me).; 'Scusc (me).; 'Scusc, please. 
1. an expression asking forgiveness for some minor social violation, such as belching or bumping into someone. ('Scuse is colloquial, and the apostrophe is not always used.) John: Ouch! Bob: Excuse me. I didn't see you there. Mary: Oh! Ow! Sue: Pardon me. I didn't mean to bump into you. Tom: Ouch! Mary: Oh, dear! What happened? Tom: You stepped on my toe. Mary: Excuse me. I'm sorry.
2. Please let me through.; Please let me by. Tom: Excuse me. I need to get past. Bob: Oh, sorry. I didn't know I was in the way. Mary: Pardon me. Sue: What? Mary: Pardon me. I want to get past you.
See also: excuse

(I) beg your pardon, but...

 and Begging your pardon, but...
Please excuse me, but. (A very polite and formal way of interrupting, bringing something to someone's attention, or asking a question of a stranger.) Rachel: Beg your pardon, but I think your right front tire is a little low. Henry: Well, I guess it is. Thank you. John: Begging your pardon, ma'am, but weren't we on the same cruise ship in Alaska last July? Rachel: Couldn't have been me.
See also: beg, but

if you'll pardon the expression

Fig. excuse the expression I am about to say or just said. This thing is—if you'll pardon the expression—loused up. I'm really jacked, if you'll pardon the expression.
See also: expression, if, pardon

Never ask pardon before you are accused.

Prov. Do not apologize for something if nobody knows that you did it, because by apologizing, you are admitting that you did it. Alan: Should I apologize to Jane for losing the necktie she gave me? Jane: Wait and see if she asks you what happened to the necktie. Never ask pardon before you are accused.
See also: accused, ask, before, never, pardon

Pardon me for living!

Inf. a very indignant response to a criticism or rebuke. Fred: Oh, I thought you had already taken yourself out of here! Sue: Well, pardon me for living! Tom: Butt out, Mary! Bill and I are talking. Mary: Pardon me for living!
See also: pardon

Pardon my French,

 and Excuse my French.
Inf. Excuse my use of swear words or taboo words. (Does not refer to real French.) Pardon my French, but this is a hell of a day. What she needs is a kick in the ass, if you'll excuse my French.
See also: french, pardon

pardon someone for something

1. to excuse someone for doing something. Will you please pardon me for what I did? I can't pardon her for that.
2. to excuse and release a convicted criminal. The governor pardoned Max for his crime. The governor did not pardon any drug dealers for their crimes.
See also: pardon

beg to differ (with somebody)

(slightly formal) also beg to disagree (with somebody)
to have a different opinion Some people think losing that game brought the team together, but I beg to differ - the team has always been together. Many believe our planet is in danger, but I beg to disagree - it's not our planet but human existence that's in danger.
See also: beg, differ

excuse me

1. I am sorry to interrupt you Oh, excuse me, I didn't know you were busy.
2. that was not what I intended to say or do As a kid growing up, my family grew strawberries, excuse me, grew tomatoes.
3. I did not hear you Which office do you work in? Excuse me?
Related vocabulary: pardon me
See also: excuse

pardon me

also I beg your pardon
1. please repeat what you just said Pardon me - what did you say your name was?
2. I am sorry for what I just did Oh, I beg your pardon! I didn't see your foot there!
3. May I please have your attention? Pardon me, does this train go to Oakland?
4. I do not agree with what you just said Pardon me, but I think you've got it backwards.
Related vocabulary: excuse me
Usage notes: in all cases, I beg your pardon is more formal than pardon me
See also: pardon

Pardon me for breathing/living!

something that you say when you are angry with someone because they are always criticizing you or getting annoyed with you 'If you're just going to get in my way, James, can you leave the kitchen?' 'Oh, pardon me for breathing, I'm sure!'
See also: pardon

Pardon my French!

  (British humorous)
something that you say which means you are sorry because you have said an impolite word The silly sod never turned up, pardon my French.
See also: pardon

beg to differ

Disagree with someone, as in John told me Max was sure to win, but I beg to differ-I don't think he has a chance. This courteous formula for expressing disagreement echoes similar uses of beg in the sense of "ask," such as I beg your pardon, so used since about 1600. Also see excuse me.
See also: beg, differ

excuse me

1. Also, I beg your pardon, pardon me. Forgive me, as in Excuse me, please let me pass, or Pardon me for asking, or I beg your pardon, I don't think so. These phrases are used as an apology for interrupting a conversation, bumping into someone, asking a speaker to repeat something, politely disagreeing with something said, and so on. The first dates from about 1600, the first variant from about 1800, the second from the mid-1700s.
2. Also, excuse oneself. Allow or ask to leave or be released from an obligation. For example, Please excuse me, I have to leave now, or I asked the judge to excuse me from jury duty. [1920s]
See also: excuse

I beg your pardon

see under beg to differ.
See also: beg, pardon

if you’ll pardon the expression

phr. excuse the expression I am about to say. This thing is—if you’ll pardon the expression—loused up. I’m really jacked, if you’ll pardon the expression.
See also: expression, if, pardon

Pardon my French

and Excuse my French
sent. Excuse my use of swear words or taboo words.; Excuse my choice of vocabulary. (Does not refer to real French.) What she needs is a kick in the butt, if you’ll excuse my French.
See also: french, pardon

(Well,) pardon me for living!

and Excuse me for breathing! and Excuse me for living!
tv. I am SOOO sorry! (A very sarcastic response to a rebuke, seeming to regret the apparent offense of even living.) A: You are blocking my view. Please move. B: Well, pardon me for living! You say you were here first? Well excuse me for breathing!
See also: pardon

pardon me for living!

See also: pardon

beg (someone's) pardon

Used to introduce a polite request.
See also: beg, pardon

beg to differ

To disagree in a polite manner.
See also: beg, differ

Excuse me

1. Used to acknowledge and ask forgiveness for an action that could cause offense.
2. Used to request that a statement be repeated.
See also: excuse

pardon my French

Please excuse my language. In the days when language propriety was more of an issue than it is now, using a word or phrase that was “unfit for mixed company” was likely to lead to embarrassment. Since French was considered a racy language, people excused themselves with “pardon my French.”
See also: french, pardon
References in periodicals archive ?
See Margaret Colgate Love, Fear of Forgiving: Rule and Discretion in the Practice of Pardoning, 13 FED.
Although the pardon power will continue to remain in the President's domain, this paper demonstrates a constitutional mechanism Congress should use to involve itself in the pardoning process.
In fact, pardoning Nixon did nothing to seal Ford's place in history as, he hoped, a popularly elected president.
Aides say the president was visibly relieved to have the long-lingering matter settled, but later that day, when he finally turned his attention to pardoning others who'd run afoul of the law, it was with a full head of anger at the prosecutors who'd made his own life miserable for so many years.
Although the photographer claimed that the child had been born in the penitentiary and raised there by his mother, this may have been a rare exception to a de facto practice of summarily pardoning and releasing pregnant women.
Randolph's scenario, a treasonous executive pardoning his treasonous lackeys, was similar to the Danby episode; perhaps his image of the pardon power came from seventeenth-century England as well.
LAHORE, November 29, 2010 (Frontier Star): The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday issuing stay order on President Asif Ali Zardari from pardoning Aasia Bibi in the blasphemy case has summoned the federation and Governor Punjab on Dec 6.
229) President Clinton's Statement of His Pardoning Philosophy, 13 FED.
Prosecutor Lawrence Walsh, who had prepared the accusation against Weinberger, said furiously that pardoning the former Defense Secretary was an overturn of the law.
74 that without "the benign prerogative of pardoning .
A grant of pardon to Estrada totally demeans the prosecutorial efforts to combat graft and corruption,'' he said, adding that pardoning Estrada would send a signal that ''public servants, especially the highest official of the land, can sit without accountability.
A pardon is an act of grace by which an offender is released from the consequences of his offence, so far as such release is practicable and within control of the pardoning power, or of officers under its direction.
Final decisions on requests for pardons will be made by the Minister of Finance after requests are submitted to the Pardoning Committee.
She vowed to scrutinize each and every pardoning request and ensure full transparency of her decisions.
Like his immediate predecessors and most (though by no means all (5)) current governors, President Obama appears to have concluded that there is too little gain and too much risk in pardoning to make it a worthwhile activity.