special, noun

Forms:
Also with initial capital.
historical
In full special pass: pass sense 2.
a1928 R.R.R. Dhlomo Afr. Tragedy 14‘Hey — wena. Special!’...He fumbled in his coat pockets as if he were looking for his special Pass.
1928 N. Devitt Blue Lizard 116Particularly was he light-hearted when he had received a ‘special’ from the missus to go to church.
1934 C.P. Swart Supplement to Pettman. 163Special passes are necessary if the Natives wish to remain in town after 9 p.m.
c1948 H. Tracey Lalela Zulu 54Forward...Onward..to Marshall Square! ‘Produce your special pass!’
1948 E. Hellmann Rooiyard 17The Native who slips out without a ‘special’ or the Native who has to return home in an inebriated condition after a convivial beer drink is well aware that the shorter the distance he has to travel the more he minimises the danger of meeting a policeman on his beat.
1953 P. Lanham Blanket Boy’s Moon 278Should Africans desire to use the streets of the city late at night, then must they obtain Special Passes from their white men employers.
1963 L.F. Freed Crime in S. Afr. 111If they went into town without a special they could be arrested.
1980 L. Callinicos People’s Hist. of S. Afr. I. 42A ‘special pass’ had to be carried when a worker left his employer’s premises even for a few hours.
1990 J. Naidoo Coolie Location 212I’d seen my uncles on the market sign passes and sometimes provide specials, but I had no practical sense of what they implied.
1990 R. Stengel January Sun 70Ras routinely arrested people for pass violations. ‘If he found you in town after nine without a “special” (a signed pass from one’s employer),’ Life recalls, ‘he would arrest you.’
pass2.
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19281990