apology [Gr.,=defense], literary work that defends, justifies, or clarifies an author's ideas or point of view. Unlike the ordinary use of the word, the literary use neither implies that wrong has been done nor expresses regret. The most famous ancient example, Plato's Apology (3d cent. B.C.), presents Socrates' defense of himself at his trial before the Athenian government. Sir Philip Sidney's Apologie for Poetrie and Defense of Poesie (both: 1580), which examine the art of poetry and its condition in England, apparently were written to justify the poets' craft after it had been attacked by critics. A third famous example, Cardinal Newman's spiritual autobiography Apologia pro Vita sua (1864), was written to clarify the Cardinal's views after they had been misrepresented in an essay by Charles Kingsley.

In literature, an autobiographical form in which a defense is the framework for discussion of the author's personal beliefs. Examples include Plato's Apology (4th century BC), in which Socrates answers his accusers by giving a history of his life and moral commitment, and John Henry Newman's Apologia pro Vita Sua (1864), an examination of the principles that inspired his conversion to Roman Catholicism.

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An apology is a justification or defense of an act or idea, from the Greek apologia (απολογία). An apology can also be an expression of contrition and remorse for something done wrong. Apology can refer to:

In literature

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