the small matter of (something)

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the small matter of (something)

Said in reference to a rather large or important issue that has not yet been completed or addressed. A: "Thank you for your services, Jennings. My valet will show you out." B: "Thank you, sir. However, there is still the small matter of my pay for the last three months."
See also: matter, of, small
References in classic literature ?
I really pity the poor fellow, and no longer ago than yesterday sent a small matter to his wife.
And, indeed, it seemed small matter for wonder, that for all his pervading, mad recklessness, Ahab did at times give careful heed to the condition of that dead bone upon which he partly stood.
Let the state be answered some small matter for the license, and the rest left to the lender; for if the abatement be but small, it will no whit discourage the lender.
A small matter if the rough wave foameth and angrily resisteth its keel!
Not only the generals in full parade uniforms, with their thin or thick waists drawn in to the utmost, their red necks squeezed into their stiff collars, and wearing scarves and all their decorations, not only the elegant, pomaded officers, but every soldier with his freshly washed and shaven face and his weapons clean and polished to the utmost, and every horse groomed till its coat shone like satin and every hair of its wetted mane lay smooth- felt that no small matter was happening, but an important and solemn affair.
Captain," resumed the other, untying his little wallet with great deliberation, and even in a manner to show he found satisfaction in the delay, "I wish to offer you a small matter of trade.
It is a small matter, Captain," returned the old man, succeeding at length in opening his bundle.
There is a small matter to-night in which you may take a hand if it so please you.
And now, Brethren," McGinty took off his black velvet cap and his stole as he spoke, "this lodge has finished its business for the evening, save for one small matter which may be mentioned when we are parting.
Simply to explain to you, as I have just explained to your Chief, that while we possess every sympathy with, and desire to give every latitude in the world to the military point of view, there are just one or two very small matters in which we must claim to have a voice.
Putting together many small matters that have come to my knowledge, I have come to the conclusion that the foul White Worm obtained control of her body, just as her soul was leaving its earthly tenement--that would explain the sudden revival of energy, the strange and inexplicable craving for maiming and killing, as well as many other matters with which I need not trouble you now, Adam.
I said he would be useful to work the weather, and attend to small matters like that, and I would give him a lift now and then when his poor little parlor- magic soured on him.
always delicate in small matters, had sent one of his yachts, with twelve men of his Scotch guard, to do honor to the ambassador he was sending to France.
Richard Jones, whom we have already mentioned, and who, from his cleverness in small matters, and an entire willingness to exert his talents, added to the circumstance of their being sisters’ children, ordinarily superintended all the minor concerns of Marmaduke Temple.
A round old-fashioned mirror hung over it, with a gilt eagle a-top, holding in his beak the knot of blue ribbon that tied up a curtain of muslin falling on either side of the table, where appeared little ivory-handled brushes, two slender silver candle-sticks, a porcelain match-box, several pretty trays for small matters, and, most imposing of all, a plump blue silk cushion, coquettishly trimmed with lace, and pink rose-buds at the corners.
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