Definition of matter of fact in US English:

matter of fact

noun

  • 1Something that belongs to the sphere of fact as distinct from opinion or conjecture.

    ‘it's a matter of fact that they had a relationship’
    • ‘These matters of fact aside, the fear of Greenland melting is itself misplaced.’
    • ‘Some were matters of opinion, others were matters of fact.’
    • ‘The extent of flooding is not a matter of opinion, it is a matter of fact.’
    • ‘The awfulness of it all is a matter of fact and no one feels the need to flourish a lot of adjectives to describe their feelings.’
    • ‘An interpretation is a matter of opinion; it is not a matter of fact.’
    • ‘You don't have debates about whether the earth goes round the sun or not; it's a matter of fact.’
    • ‘So far as the head teacher is concerned, it is a matter of fact that he did exclude him.’
    • ‘You have raised a matter of fact and I have no reason to doubt you.’
    practical, matter-of-fact, realistic, sensible, down-to-earth, commonsensical, hard-headed, expedient, businesslike, with both feet on the ground, with one's feet on the ground, rational, reasonable, no-nonsense, unsentimental, unidealistic
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    1. 1.1Law The part of a judicial inquiry concerned with the truth of alleged facts.
      Often contrasted with matter of law
      • ‘Certain matters of fact and law are common to the two applications and motions, as will be apparent from the reasons for decision on the two motions.’
      • ‘The second is that it is a matter of fact what caused the specific loss.’
      • ‘In the end it becomes a matter of fact for the judge to decide.’
      • ‘It is an inquiry into matters of fact, just as a civil trial is an inquiry into matters of fact, and then a determination of whether negligence existed, for example.’
      • ‘So how can they rule against me on a matter of fact when the facts were there?’

adjective

matter-of-fact
  • 1Unemotional and practical.

    ‘he was characteristically calm and matter-of-fact’
    • ‘He tried to keep his tone matter-of-fact and business-like, but he couldn't completely hide the quiver of emotion as he spoke of leaving her.’
    • ‘And the work you did was more practical, more matter-of-fact than a liberal cause or a conservative crusade.’
    • ‘The key to the technique is to describe ‘in a matter-of-fact way’ what's happening on screen when no one's talking without giving away the plot.’
    • ‘You're speaking about this in a very calm, matter-of-fact way, but it must have been a very strange, even emotional, experience.’
    • ‘She is blunt, matter-of-fact and, as a result, inspiring.’
    • ‘Younger Europeans take Europe for granted in a matter-of-fact way.’
    • ‘He is very matter-of-fact about this, and I feel sorry for him when he looks at the state of the country, for which he fought so bravely, with so much disappointment.’
    • ‘His callous, matter-of-fact handling of the ropes, straps and paraphernalia of violent death was a despicable sight to see.’
    • ‘The greatest trump card that he has to offer is his practical, matter-of-fact approach to tackling world poverty.’
    • ‘‘Nobody made a great deal about it, but it was generally accepted in a matter-of-fact way,’ he said.’
    • ‘A down to-earth matter-of-fact approach devoid of judgment is best, no matter how horrific the details.’
    • ‘Steely and matter-of-fact, the Commonwealth super middleweight champion is part of an exciting wave of British talent set to swell on the world scene over the next two years.’
    • ‘He was just being matter-of-fact, tossing out a number that seems like a distant memory, like gas under $2.’
    • ‘He had reached the matter-of-fact realisation that law was, simply, a form of alchemy.’
    • ‘If something embarrassing or exciting happens, the film presents it in a matter-of-fact, straightforward way.’
    • ‘How can one so young be so matter-of-fact about death?’
    • ‘The exercise evokes no emotion, only matter-of-fact acknowledgment.’
    • ‘That, once again, was enough to generate peels of laughter as the crowd appreciated the new minister's matter-of-fact approach to life and business.’
    • ‘They are so matter-of-fact about it all that you never really get the sense of desperation or abjection that we're used to seeing in heroin narratives.’
    • ‘The doctor was matter-of-fact but considerate.’
    unemotional, practical, down-to-earth, sensible, realistic, rational, sober, unsentimental, pragmatic, businesslike, commonsensical, level-headed, hard-headed, no-nonsense, factual, literal, straightforward, plain, unembellished, unvarnished, unadorned, prosaic, mundane, unimaginative, uncreative, deadpan, flat, dull, dry, pedestrian, lifeless, humdrum
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    1. 1.1 Concerned only with factual content rather than style or expression.
      ‘the text is written in a breezy matter-of-fact manner’
      • ‘The sentences were short and direct and, unsurprising in a letter to a stranger, largely matter-of-fact.’
      • ‘It is expressed not in high-flown language but as a down-to-earth matter-of-fact promise.’
      • ‘It is an apologetic note, but the matter-of-fact detail telling how the gang smashed a window and helped themselves to beer and crisps is a perfect example of how yobs are curtailing the work of the church.’
      • ‘His own description of his ‘enlightenment’ is, in fact, remarkably prosaic and matter-of-fact.’
      • ‘That last short sentence is so matter-of-fact, and describes such an everyday event, that I bet you hardly noticed it.’
      • ‘Beyond that, her soprano is strangely colorless, and her projection of the text flat and matter-of-fact.’
      • ‘The visual style is matter-of-fact and almost cinéma vérité, as if the camera is as furtive a spectator as the kidnapper with his telescopic sight.’
      • ‘In a matter-of-fact style, great violence is done, but little action.’
      • ‘Incredibly, both of them survived to tell the tale, and they do so here in the same detailed, matter-of-fact language you imagine Scott of the Antarctic would have used.’
      • ‘These seemingly matter-of-fact, prosaic pictures are frequently animated by a quality that suggests the spiritual.’
      • ‘The sober and matter-of-fact presentation makes his discussion seem like just common sense.’
      • ‘It's not an insult, simply a matter-of-fact statement.’
      • ‘But much of the detail lies lost between his matter-of-fact lines.’
      • ‘It's an affecting albeit matter-of-fact portrayal.’
      • ‘Some are straightforward and matter-of-fact, while others are essayistic.’
      truthful, true, accurate, authentic, historical, genuine, fact-based, realistic, real
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Phrases

  • as a matter of fact

    • In reality (used especially to correct a falsehood or misunderstanding)

      ‘as a matter of fact, I was talking to him this afternoon’
      • ‘Everyone did quite well on their own, as a matter of fact, and I was extraneous, to say the least.’
      • ‘It sent out cards, this card as a matter of fact, wishing a holiday season of hope and happiness.’
      • ‘Yes, as a matter of fact, I had been given kind of the death sentence back at the beginning of the year.’
      • ‘I think that particular someone may have been me, as a matter of fact - but I do know what he means.’
      • ‘The police will tell you, as a matter of fact, that they are extremely interested in this guy.’
      • ‘Now as a matter of fact there are few better times and places to set a novel than in Victorian England.’
      • ‘Just tonight, as a matter of fact, we were up in Buffalo and we had a dinner of several hundred people.’
      • ‘No one has ever made a factual objection to anything that appears in my movie or my book, as a matter of fact.’
      • ‘I was in the Caribbean, as a matter of fact, on a vacation and I called him right away.’
      • ‘I was at that show and, as a matter of fact, I saw your bike getting smashed.’
      actually, in actual fact, in fact, in point of fact, as it happens, really, believe it or not, in reality, in truth, to tell the truth, truly
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