Definition of exceptional in US English:

exceptional

adjective

  • 1Unusual; not typical.

    ‘crimes of exceptional callousness and cruelty’
    • ‘They only come before councillors in exceptional circumstances and the criteria for rejecting them are narrower than in other planning matters.’
    • ‘No more than three or four awards of this nature are made in the course of a year and only in exceptional circumstances to people outside Spain.’
    • ‘My old laptop was retired because of a really weird problem, which was that the computer would only start in exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘‘Although this may be increased in very exceptional circumstances,’ said Debbie.’
    • ‘It can only be displaced by unusual or exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘This is certainly a very unique case, a very exceptional set of circumstances.’
    • ‘He said that the exceptional permission for the unusual ceremony had been granted because his grandmother had herself served as a Wren.’
    • ‘‘They are pretty exceptional circumstances,’ he said, trying to keep his anger hidden.’
    • ‘This irrational checklist has nothing to do with pasta or pizzas, or indeed with the food at all - except in exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘There is currently some 30,000 farmers receiving exceptional circumstances drought relief.’
    • ‘Again, there is no suggestion here that paying more than would be justified on a strict royalty calculation is an unusual or exceptional practice.’
    • ‘While superficially complex, this was not an exceptional case.’
    • ‘There are rare and exceptional circumstances in existence in this case.’
    • ‘Bidding on rare and unusual items in exceptional condition was very aggressive, pushing prices to new highs.’
    • ‘Applications for damage to cars or non-essential items will not normally be considered, other than in exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘The judge awarded costs because of the exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘The Human Rights Act is, I believe, open to re-negotiation in certain exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘We will publish manuscripts over 30,000 words only under exceptional circumstances.’
    • ‘In exceptional circumstances, proposals or amendments could be introduced after the circulation of the agenda.’
    • ‘Independent appeal panels are also to be advised that such decisions should only be overturned under exceptional circumstances.’
    unusual, uncommon, abnormal, atypical, extraordinary, out of the ordinary, out of the way, rare, singular, unprecedented, unexpected, surprising
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Unusually good; outstanding.
      ‘a pepper offering exceptional flavor and juiciness’
      • ‘Hawkins doesn't have exceptional coverage ability but is aggressive and physical.’
      • ‘Williams has exceptional hands and leaping ability and can beat linebackers deep with his speed.’
      • ‘This is a sure bet because carbon has an exceptional ability to link up with other atoms into long chains, or polymers.’
      • ‘McDaniel has functional speed but exceptional instincts and playmaking ability.’
      • ‘Writers are liked or disliked for something much vaster than their exceptional ability with language.’
      • ‘If you have not tried pecorino cheese, give it a chance, it is has kind of a salty exceptional taste full of flavor more so than Parmesan.’
      • ‘She also had the exceptional ability to recall vividly small incidents in her life, and recount them without any exaggeration.’
      • ‘Reed has been fielding some punts in practice, and he is an exceptional athlete with big-play ability.’
      • ‘The Dolby Digital 5.1 also sounds exceptional, with outstanding separation in the mix.’
      • ‘His two points were superb efforts and his overall display marked him out as a player of exceptional ability.’
      • ‘It is the combination of exceptional memory and calculating ability which seems to combine in many of those we consider.’
      • ‘Ted was a remarkable and exceptional man, who just happened to also live for 106 years.’
      • ‘Lincoln appears to have been a man who loved to laugh and used his exceptional story telling ability to his advantage.’
      • ‘The Savage bolt action has always provided outstanding accuracy and exceptional value for the money.’
      • ‘And Kaushik, who had an exceptional ability in identifying the cars manufactured worldwide.’
      • ‘So far, so good, as most of the items on the menu are of reasonable price, significant size and exceptional flavor.’
      • ‘Bernard's exceptional rugby ability has not gone unnoticed and he has recently been invited to play rugby with Leinster.’
      • ‘The style of government directed by Henry II and his sons was exceptional for its penetrative ability and aggressive quality.’
      • ‘The breed is also noted for its endurance ability, and its exceptional disposition.’
      • ‘Some autistic children show, at an unusually early age, exceptional abilities in music, graphic art or arithmetic.’
      outstanding, extraordinary, remarkable, unusually good, special, especial, excellent, phenomenal, prodigious
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2US (of a child) mentally or physically disabled so as to require special schooling.
      ‘helping parents of exceptional children’
      • ‘Ramesh's impeded mobility and poor physical conditioning were exceptional.’
      • ‘Schools receive little money from state or federal sources to offset disabled students' exceptional needs.’
      • ‘Talking about his son who has Downs Syndrome he points out that they are exceptional children or people, who want to be loved, the same as we all do.’
      • ‘He cannot then be made liable for the exceptional child that strays, nor will he be required to prove that any particular parent has been negligent.’
      • ‘In his other life, Dale is an unprofessional musician and the father of two exceptional children.’
      • ‘He even realized that the young man was exceptional, but not exactly in a good way.’

Usage

See exceptionable

Pronunciation

exceptional

/ˌɪkˈsɛpʃ(ə)n(ə)l//ˌikˈsepSH(ə)n(ə)l/