excuse for

excuse (one) for (something)

To forgive one for something, often a minor indiscretion. Please excuse me for my lateness—the traffic was really bad tonight.
See also: excuse

excuse someone for something

to pardon someone for something or for (doing) something. Please excuse me for this mess. I've not been able to clean the house. I can't excuse myself for not doing it.
See also: excuse
References in classic literature ?
An excuse for keeping away from Monksmoor--in the interests of my own tranquillity.
While the apology made for Miss Pink stated no more than the plain truth, it must be confessed that Hardyman was right in declining to be satisfied with Isabel's excuse for the melancholy that oppressed her.
In the rough draught of it, he had mentioned, as his excuse for not being yet certain of his own movements, that he expected to be immediately married.
I can make no excuse for myself; I can only tell the truth, and say--so it was.
D'Artagnan did not believe Athos to be capable of a deception, but he sought an excuse for not going to the rendezvous.
A CAT caught a Cock, and pondered how he might find a reasonable excuse for eating him.
Transportation Assistant Secretary for Communications Cherie Mercado-Santos took exception to the Philippine Daily Inquirer's article on Secretary Arthur Tugade's urging Filipinos to shed the mindset of using 'traffic' as an excuse for tardiness.
It's First we had Nigel Farage's excuse for missing a drinks reception: that he was late because the M4 motorway was clogged up with migrants.
I CAN'T believe how many times that alcohol misuse has been given as an excuse for crime.
IT'S tempting to stay in bed all day drinking water, but a simple hangover is not a good excuse for failing to exercise.
The most common excuse for getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol was: "It's only down the road," according to an AA/ Populus survey of more than 18,000 drivers.
Alcohol and domestic violence are often linked but the message behind the campaign, which is supported by its own confidential, informative website, is that there is never an excuse for domestic violence.
1 : a reason given for having done something wrong <What's your excuse for being so late?
Now this gives me a great excuse for not getting the tasks assigned completed, but my wife, Louise, tells me with some intensity that excuses really don't count for much.
Can we honestly say that we are "free from accusation" when we have a feeble excuse for doing or failing to do something?