tell you the truth

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English[edit]

Phrase[edit]

tell you the truth

  1. (idiomatic, informal) Used to positively assert the frank honesty of an associated statement of set of statements; equivalent to "to you tell the truth".
    • 1994, Lawrence Block, A Long Line of Dead Men:
      "What's the point? Your buddies can kick back and relax. I'm going into voluntary retirement." / "Oh?" / "Tell you the truth, I was getting a little tired of Jim Shorter. Tired of that little room on Ninety-fourth Street. You know what I might do? I might leave town."

Usage notes[edit]

  • Used bracketed by punctuation, especially commas, dashes, or parentheses.
  • More intimate than tell the truth.

Synonyms[edit]

Related terms[edit]