Concept# Special functions

Summary

Special functions are particular mathematical functions that have more or less established names and notations due to their importance in mathematical analysis, functional analysis, geometry, physics, or other applications.
The term is defined by consensus, and thus lacks a general formal definition, but the list of mathematical functions contains functions that are commonly accepted as special.
Tables of special functions
Many special functions appear as solutions of differential equations or integrals of elementary functions. Therefore, tables of integrals usually include descriptions of special functions, and tables of special functions include most important integrals; at least, the integral representation of special functions. Because symmetries of differential equations are essential to both physics and mathematics, the theory of special functions is closely related to the theory of Lie groups and Lie algebras, as well as certain topics in mathematical physics.
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