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For Life
2007.05.28(Review of 2003.08.01 edition)

Welcome, to a second week of WordMaster editions that focus on telephone English! This time we bring you five expressions that'll serve you well when the person you'd like to speak to isn't available. Sound useful? You bet it is!

Today's Lesson
I'M SORRY, BUT ...   申し訳ありませんが、〜です。

Explanation

  • I'm sorry, but ... is a polite expression that is used when you think someone will not be happy about what you say next; for example, when giving bad news, disagreeing, or saying no.
  • I'm sorry, but ... は、自分がこれから言おうとしていることが、相手にとって好ましくないと思われるときに使う丁寧な表現です。例えば、悪い知らせを告げるときや、相手に反対するとき、またはNoと答えなければならないときなどに使います。

I'M SORRY, BUT ...

examples

  1. (on the phone)
    a: I'd like to speak to Ms. Claymore, please.
    b: I'm sorry, but she's out of the office all day. May I take a message?
  2. (at the front desk of a hotel)
    GUEST: I can't sleep with all the noise in the next room. Can you move me to another room?
    CLERK: I'm sorry, but there are no other rooms available tonight.
  3. (in a restaurant)
    CUSTOMER: I'd like the roast beef sandwich special, please.
    WAITER: I'm sorry, but we're out of the special. How about a turkey sandwich instead?
  4. I'm sorry, but I think you're wrong about Peter. He's really very sweet once you get to know him.

英会話レッスンWe're sorry, but it's time to go. See you tomorrow!