Suppose someone (let's call him Alex) is bad at playing soccer, but he does not want to hear that.

Now if someone says to Alex in his face, "you are a really bad soccer player", what would be an apt word for that? In my mother tongue it is called "unqualified truth" for Alex. Is there an equivalent English term?

  • Why down vote?? Apr 23 '13 at 13:15
  • 8
    The cold, hard truth. Apr 23 '13 at 13:25
  • 1
    It was likely downvoted for being "not a real question: It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form."
    – mplungjan
    Apr 23 '13 at 13:26
  • How about brutal truth?
    – jub0bs
    Apr 23 '13 at 13:29
  • 2
    Please try to think of a more descriptive title. "Need a single word" is too generic for people to get interested and click on it. Also, it takes just one other person to post a question with the same generic title, and your question becomes impossible to search for. Thank you.
    – RegDwigнt
    Apr 23 '13 at 13:59

10 Answers 10


There is factual "truth" in that it is a something that cannot be disputed such as "I am sitting at my desk right now".

Then there is opinion "truth" such as "The truth is, you're a pain in the butt - everyone here thinks so!"

Most of the answers already provided will fall under opinion "truth" including:

  • candidness
  • brutal honesty
  • bluntness
  • unvarnished truth

What could be considered factual "truth" would be words such as:

  • indisputable
  • uncontestable
  • incontrovertable
  • irrefutable
  • absolute

You could use frankness, the adjective frank or the adverb frankly.

These usually imply directness and honesty which may be uncomfortable or unpleasant to hear.


As suggested by other answers, blunt, frank and candid are all appropriate adjectives for a person willing to express even unpleasant truths.

An idiom for the action itself is to give it to [someone] straight.

Another option (and one more similar in form to your direct translation of the original) is the unvarnished truth.


I've used "blunt" or "bluntly" in the past.

"Alex is an awful footballer, putting it bluntly"


Use brutal honesty or brutally honest if you want to emphasize that a frank truth is hurtful or that the speaker is insensitive.


Candidness means that you tell it like it is without holding back the truth, even if it is unpleasant. It is defined as:

the quality of being candid; openness of mind or manner; frank honesty or truthfulness; fairness; ingenuousness.

the quality of being honest and straightforward in attitude and speech


Certainty is a noun meaning that which is certain and indisputable.

"It is a certainty that you are a bad soccer player."

Indisputable is an adjective that means not disputable; not open to question; obviously true.

"It is indisputable that he is bad at soccer."

Naked truth means a truth that is plain, conspicuous, untempered, unmitigated, not hidden, not understated. There are many synonyms that apply and can replace "naked".

"You have to face the naked truth that you are a bad soccer player."


Unqualified truth connotes a truth or fact that has no conditions and is true or factual regardless of circumstances, time or opinion. It has no qualifiers attached.


"The fact is, Alex, that you're a really bad soccer player".


Perhaps a word which means something more along the lines of "unqualified truth" is Equivocal - of doubtful nature or character.

  • 1
    But "Alex, you are a really bad soccer player" [see the question] is actually unequivocal.
    – Andrew Leach
    May 21 '13 at 9:41

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