Definition of fact noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary

      

    fact

     noun
    noun
    NAmE//fækt//
     
     
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  1. 1[singular] fact (that…) used to refer to a particular situation that exists I could no longer ignore the fact that he was deeply unhappy. Despite the fact that she was wearing a seat belt, she was thrown sharply forward. Due to the fact that they did not read English, the prisoners were unaware of what they were signing. She was happy apart from the fact that she could not return home. Voluntary work was particularly important in view of the fact that women were often forced to give up paid work on marriage. How do you account for the fact that unemployment is still rising? The fact remains that we are still two teachers short. The mere fact of being poor makes such children criminals in the eyes of the police. Language Bankhoweverways of saying “but” Politicians have promised to improve road safety. So far, however, little has been achieved. Despite/In spite of clear evidence from road safety studies, no new measures have been introduced. Politicians have promised to improve road safety. In spite of this/Despite this, little has been achieved so far. Although politicians have promised to improve road safety, little has been achieved so far. Some politicians claim that the new transportation policy has been a success. In fact, it has been a total disaster. Government campaigns have had a measure of success, but the fact remains that large numbers of accidents are still caused by careless drivers.
  2. 2 [countable] a thing that is known to be true, especially when it can be proved Isn't it a fact that the company is losing money? (informal) I haven't spoken to anyone in English for days and that's a fact. Iknow for a fact (= I am certain) that she's involved in something illegal. The judge instructed both lawyers to stick to the facts of the case. First, some basic facts about healthy eating! The report is based on hard facts (= information that can be proved to be true). If you're going to make accusations, you'd better get your facts right (= make sure your information is correct). It's about time you learned to face (the) facts (= accepted the truth about the situation).
  3. 3[uncountable] things that are true rather than things that have been invented The story is based on fact. It's important to distinguish fact from fiction.
  4. Idioms
    after the fact
     
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    after something has happened or been done when it is too late to prevent it or change it On some vital decisions employees were only informed after the fact.
      as a matter of fact
       
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    1. 1used to add a comment on something that you have just said, usually adding something that you think the other person will be interested in It's a nice place. We've stayed there ourselves, as a matter of fact.
    2. 2used to disagree with something that someone has just said synonym actually “I suppose you'll be leaving soon, then?” “No, as a matter of fact I'll be staying for another two years.”
    the fact (of the matter) is (that)…
     
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     used to emphasize a statement, especially one that is the opposite of what has just been mentioned A new car would be wonderful, but the fact of the matter is that we can't afford one.
    a fact of life
     
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    a situation that cannot be changed, especially one that is unpleasant It's a fact of life that some people will always be racist.
    facts and figures
     
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    accurate and detailed information I've asked to see all the facts and figures before I make a decision.
    the facts of life
     
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    the details about sex and about how babies are born, especially as told to children
    the facts speak for themselves
     
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    it is not necessary to give any further explanation about something because the information that is available already proves that it is true
      in (actual) fact
       
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    1. 1used to give extra details about something that has just been mentioned I used to live in France; in fact, not far from where you're going.
    2. 2used to emphasize a statement, especially one that is the opposite of what has just been mentioned I thought the work would be difficult. In actual fact, it's very easy. Language Bankhoweverways of saying “but” Politicians have promised to improve road safety. So far, however, little has been achieved. Despite/In spite of clear evidence from road safety studies, no new measures have been introduced. Politicians have promised to improve road safety. In spite of this/Despite this, little has been achieved so far. Although politicians have promised to improve road safety, little has been achieved so far. Some politicians claim that the new transportation policy has been a success. In fact, it has been a total disaster. Government campaigns have had a measure of success, but the fact remains that large numbers of accidents are still caused by careless drivers.
    in point of fact
     
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    used to say what is true in a situation In point of fact, she is their adopted daughter.
    Is that a fact?(informal)
     
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    used to reply to a statement that you find interesting or surprising, or that you do not believe “She says I'm one of the best students she's ever taught.” “Is that a fact?”
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: fact