special ( specials plural )
1 adj Someone or something that is special is better or more important than other people or things.
You're very special to me, darling..., There are strong arguments for holidays at Easter and Christmas because these are special occasions..., My special guest will be comedian Ben Elton.
2 adj Special means different from normal.
ADJ n (Antonym: normal)
In special cases, a husband can deduct the travel expenses of his wife who accompanies him on a business trip..., So you didn't notice anything special about him?...
3 adj You use special to describe someone who is officially appointed or who has a particular position specially created for them.
Frank Deford is a special correspondent for Newsweek magazine.
4 adj Special institutions are for people who have serious physical or mental problems.
Police are still searching for a convicted rapist, who escaped from Broadmoor special hospital yesterday.
5 adj You use special to describe something that relates to one particular person, group, or place.
Every anxious person will have his or her own special problems or fears., ...it requires a very special brand of courage to fight dictators.
6 n-count A special is a product, programme, or meal which is not normally available, or which is made for a particular purpose. ...complaints about the BBC's Hallowe'en special, `Ghostwatch'..., Grocery stores have to offer enough specials to bring people into the store.
The Special Branch is the department of the British police that is concerned with political security and deals with things such as terrorism and visits by foreign leaders. n-proper oft the N
Special education is teaching for pupils who need extra help with their studies. n-uncount oft N n
The school has a special education unit.
special effect ( special effects plural ) In film, special effects are unusual pictures or sounds that are created by using special techniques. n-count usu pl
...a Hollywood horror film with special effects that are not for the nervous.
People with special needs are people who need special help or care, for example because they are physically or mentally disabled.
(BRIT) n-plural oft N n
...a school for children with special needs.
special offer ( special offers plural ) A special offer is a product, service, or programme that is offered at reduced prices or rates. n-count
Ask about special offers on our new 2-week holidays.
If someone is using special pleading, they are trying to persuade you to do something by only telling you the facts that support their case. n-uncount
The Secretary of State has given in to special pleading.
special school ( special schools plural ) A special school is a school for children who have some kind of serious physical or mental problem.