Share this entry

Share this page

matter of fact

Syllabification: mat·ter of fact

Definition of matter of fact in English:

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
More example sentences
  • 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.
  • An interpretation is a matter of opinion; it is not a matter of fact.
1.1 Law The part of a judicial inquiry concerned with the truth of alleged facts. Often contrasted with matter of law.
Example sentences
  • 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?
  • In the end it becomes a matter of fact for the judge to decide.

adjective

(matter-of-fact) Back to top  
1Unemotional and practical: he was characteristically calm and matter-of-fact
More example sentences
  • And the work you did was more practical, more matter-of-fact than a liberal cause or a conservative crusade.
  • The greatest trump card that he has to offer is his practical, matter-of-fact approach to tackling world poverty.
  • A down to-earth matter-of-fact approach devoid of judgment is best, no matter how horrific the details.
Synonyms
unemotional, practical, down-to-earth, sensible, realistic, rational, sober, unsentimental, pragmatic, businesslike, commonsensical, levelheaded, hardheaded, no-nonsense, factual, literal, straightforward, straight-out, plain, unembellished, unvarnished, unadorned;
unimaginative, prosaic
1.1Concerned only with factual content rather than style or expression: the text is written in a breezy matter-of-fact manner
More example sentences
  • 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.
  • The sober and matter-of-fact presentation makes his discussion seem like just common sense.

Phrases

as a matter of fact

1
In reality (used especially to correct a falsehood or misunderstanding): as a matter of fact, I was talking to him this afternoon
More example sentences
  • Yes, as a matter of fact, I had been given kind of the death sentence back at the beginning of the year.
  • I was at that show and, as a matter of fact, I saw your bike getting smashed.
  • Just tonight, as a matter of fact, we were up in Buffalo and we had a dinner of several hundred people.
Synonyms

Derivatives

matter-of-factly

1
adverb
Example sentences
  • ‘They could provide the best coaching and facilities,’ he explains, matter-of-factly.
  • They admitted to being a little surprised, disappointed even, when he simply took the photo, quickly and matter-of-factly.
  • ‘Though it is a tedious process, it is a source of income for us,’ he says matter-of-factly.

matter-of-factness

2
noun
Example sentences
  • It moves in the opposite direction to most post-war poetry and prose, which sought practicality, matter-of-factness, accessibility.
  • The statement is made with a common-sense matter-of-factness that resonates, even as part of me says it doesn't work that way.
  • These quotations might seem rather naïve and simplistic contributions to an argument, but I believe they are instead extremely important and effective in their very simplicity and matter-of-factness.

Definition of matter of fact in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day terpsichorean
Pronunciation: ˌtəːpsɪkəˈriːən
adjective
relating to dancing