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.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use special pleading in a sentence
But after Pearl Harbor there was no longer a case for special pleading.Blood and War: The Hard Truth About ‘Boots on the Ground’ | Clive Irving | September 22, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Indeed, the data cited by Walters himself undermine his special pleading.One War We Should Be Happy to Lose Once and For All: the Drug War | Nick Gillespie | June 21, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Anyone who dares object to one of these indictments is obliged to do so in terms of their own special pleading.
That sort of special pleading is unlikely to win friends and influence people on Capitol Hill.As Anger at Eric Holder Grows, So Does His Value as Obama’s Lightning Rod | Nick Gillespie | May 30, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
As crystal clear as that proposition is in America and Israel, it is decried and damned as special pleading the world over.
I'm human, and I dare say I did do a bit of special pleading.Mrs. Maxon Protests | Anthony Hope
The year 1852 was memorable for the Act which altered the old system of special pleading.The Life of Sir James Fitzjames Stephen, Bart., K.C.S.I. | Sir Leslie Stephen
There is here some confusion of thought and some obvious, but possibly unconscious, special pleading.Ancient Art and Ritual | Jane Ellen Harrison
A commission has been issued, preparatory to a reform of the system of special pleading.
The fact has priority over the dogmas, and is altogether too strong to need the patronizing special-pleading they suggest.
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