The instructions say:

Define a function factorial that takes an integer x as input.

Calculate and return the factorial of that number.

I have been reading the forums and I understand the solution (even though I am curious about the aim of this exercise since I don't recall having learn the factorial function before in previous exercises), but I am very puzzled about something. The forums say that factorial is a recursive function, which I take to mean something like it will automatically repeat itself or something. But I don't understand...why can't we just take factorial(x) straightaway, where x is a number? if factorial is a function recognised by Python why can't we just use it directly?

Many thanks