What are the special symbols in C language?

In C programming language, generally, the special symbols have some special meaning and they cannot be used for other purposes.

Some of the special symbols that are used in C programming are as follows −

[] () {}, ; * = #

Let’s understand their definitions, which are as follows −

  • Brackets[] − Opening and closing of brackets are used for array element reference, which indicate single and multidimensional subscripts.

  • Parentheses() − These special symbols are used for function calls and function parameters.

  • Braces{} − Opening and closing of curly braces indicates the start and end of a block of code which contains more than one executable statement.

  • Comma (, ) − It is used to separate more than one statements like separating parameters in function calls.

  • Colon(:) − It is an operator which essentially invokes something called as an initialization list.

  • Semicolon(;) − It is called as a statement terminator that indicates the end of one logical entity. That is the reason each individual statement must be ended with a semicolon.

  • Asterisk (*) − It is used to create a pointer variable.

  • Assignment operator(=) − It is used for assigning values.

  • Pre-processor (#) − The pre-processor called as a macro processor is used by the compiler to transform your program before the actual compilation starts.

The table given below What iss the respective meaning of the special symbols used in the C programming language.


Exclamation mark
Number sign
Dollar sign

Percent sign

Lest parenthesis
Right parenthesis

Plus sign

Vertical bar

Minus sign

Equal to sign
Opening angle bracket
Closing angle bracket

Question mark
Left brace
Right brace

Left bracket
Right bracket

Quotation mark