Law. pleading that alleges special or new matter in avoidance of the allegations made by the opposite side.
pleading or arguing that ignores unfavorable features of a case.
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Origin of special pleading
First recorded in 1675–85
Words nearby special pleading
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
Example sentences from the Web for special pleading
In writing biography, special-pleading is not good; and I would fain avoid trying to make the Poet out any better than he was.
A special-pleading signification is given to this dogma by the Commentator: viz.Hindu Law and Judicature|Yjnavalkya
British Dictionary definitions for special pleading
a pleading that alleges new facts that offset those put forward by the other side rather than directly admitting or denying those facts
a pleading that emphasizes the favourable aspects of a case while omitting the unfavourable
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012