Definition of to tell (you) the truth in US English:

to tell (you) the truth

(also if truth be told, truth to tell)

phrase

  • To be frank (used especially when making an admission or when expressing an unwelcome or controversial opinion)

    ‘I think, if truth be told, we were all a little afraid of him’
    ‘to tell you the truth, I've never met the guys’
    • ‘However, if truth be told, I'm still experimenting.’
    • ‘It's Friday evening and there is a look of immense satisfaction on his face - although it is probably more relief, if truth be told.’
    • ‘They clapped, they beamed, they leapt to their feet to welcome a speech that, truth to tell, was more a statement of intent than a programme for government.’
    • ‘Well, truth to tell, there are things about it that aren't funny at all, but I'll stick to my more positive take for now.’
    • ‘But I don't actually envy her, because truth to tell, I hate weddings.’
    • ‘Will said with a slight smile in his voice, ‘That realisation has been a long time coming, in fact you've been a bit slow on the uptake if truth be told.’’
    • ‘When the tests were finished I walked off feeling really happy with myself because, truth to tell, I do feel pretty good these days.’
    • ‘This is a novel concept for Scotland, and, truth to tell, we are not very good at it.’
    • ‘But, truth to tell, I'm too tired to think about it, or anything else.’
    • ‘They all have varying degrees of proficiency - although if truth be told, most would probably be classed as being of fairly mediocre quality.’
    in fact, in actual fact, in point of fact, as a matter of fact, in reality, really, actually, to tell the truth, if truth be told
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