Grammar Tips & Articles »

Apologize vs. Apologise

This article is about Apologize vs. Apologise — enjoy your reading!

2:26 min read
  Angbeen Chaudhary  —  Grammar Tips
Font size:

If the athlete wants to rejoin the team, he must apologise for his poor attitude.

Shouldn’t the above sentence have different spellings of apologize that it, with a z instead of s? Apologize and apologise are the two known spellings of the verb and there are many controversies regarding which spellings are right and which are wrong. Young English language learners face this difficulty the most where amidst of a sentence they have to pause and first think about the right spellings of the word.

This article will throw light upon the right spellings, meanings, usage, examples and origin of the word so next time you pick up your pen, you know all there is to know about apologize as a verb.

Apologize vs. Apologise


The word apologize originated from late 16th century (in the sense ‘make a defensive argument’): from Greek apologizesthai ‘give an account’, from apologos . In English the verb has always been used as if it were a direct derivative of apology.

Apologize as a verb:

Apologize is used as a verb in English language where it means express regret for something that one has done wrong. The word has various synonyms like say sorry, express regret, be apologetic, make an apology, ask forgiveness, beg (someone's) forgiveness, ask for pardon, beg or pardon.  

I must apologize for disturbing you like this.


When to use apologise:

Apologise is the British variant. Even in the British English speaking community, however, it is still not universally accepted, as apologize is older and had been considered standard for a long time.

When to use apologize:

Apologize is the American English variant of the same verb: to apologize. It is older and is more common still today.


Nearly a third spontaneously apologized for their crimes and showed signs of true repentance. [Toronto Star]

The fine is to be even higher if Chevron doesn’t publicly apologize. [Wall Street Journal]

Executives from a Japanese Sony music unit apologized Wednesday for a rock band under its management that dressed up like Nazis on a national TV broadcast. [Winnipeg Free Press]

British discount carrier easyJet is apologizing to Jewish customers after it stocked only bacon baguettes and ham melts as meal selections on a flight from Tel Aviv earlier this month. [USA Today]

Apologize or apologise:

Apologize is the preferred spelling in American and Canadian English, and apologise is preferred in varieties of English from outside North America. This is the case despite the fact that apologize is the original form and was once standard even in British English (and is still used by some British publishers). Many people have trouble choosing apologize or apologise in their writing. If your spell checker doesn’t help you, you can always remember that apologize and Arizona are both words that contain a Z, as well as both being words that are commonly used in America.

Are you an apologise person or an apologize person?

Rate this article:

Have a discussion about this article with the community:

  • paulh.41255
    Really...."bacon baguettes and ham melts on flight from Tel Aviv"- only you could do that!
    LikeReply9 months ago
  • Laura P-m
    Laura P-m
    “Apologize is the preferred spelling in American and Canadian English”
    No, Canada used British English.
    LikeReply 13 years ago


Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:


"Apologize vs. Apologise." STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 30 Mar. 2023. <>.

Free, no signup required:

Add to Chrome

Check your text and writing for style, spelling and grammar problems everywhere on the web!

Free, no signup required:

Add to Firefox

Check your text and writing for style, spelling and grammar problems everywhere on the web!


Free Writing Tool:

Grammar Checker

Improve your grammar, vocabulary, and writing -- and it's FREE!

Improve your writing now:

Download Grammar eBooks

It’s now more important than ever to develop a powerful writing style. After all, most communication takes place in reports, emails, and instant messages.