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Special quadrilaterals

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Have you ever looked at a chess or checkers board and thought to yourself, "Wow, this is a fine-looking perfect square!"? Without realizing it, this square chess board is considered a **special quadrilateral**. In this article, we will discuss:

Five types of special quadrilaterals (kites, rhombuses, rectangles, squares, and trapezoids)

Some properties of each

For more information on each type of these special quadrilaterals, check out our articles on Rectangles, Squares, Rhombuses, and Trapezoids.

First, let's review quadrilaterals. You can find more details in Quadrilaterals.

Let's recall what we mean when we say "quadrilateral". For more details, see our article on Quadrilaterals.

A **quadrilateral** is a two-dimensional figure. It is a type of polygon, and what makes a figure a quadrilateral is the fact that it has four sides.

"Quadri" in the word "quadrilateral" is a Latin word that means 4. The word "lateral" means "sides. That is why a figure with four sides is called a quadrilateral.

Some quadrilaterals don't have any matching side lengths or angles, like in the figure below.

Some have pairs of congruent side lengths and angles, like in the figure below:

This article will focus on the latter of these two examples (quadrilaterals that have some combination of equal side lengths and/or angles). Let's have a further look!

**Special quadrilaterals** are polygons with four sides that have some combination of equal side lengths and/or angles.

A polygon is a two-dimensional, enclosed figure (such as a triangle or square). Refer to the article on Polygons for specifics!

The five types of special quadrilaterals are:

Rhombus

Square

Trapezoid

Kites

Let's take a look at the properties of each quadrilateral.

Now, let's look at what makes the special quadrilaterals so special. They each have their unique properties, but you will find that some of them have some similarities. Let's start with a rectangle.

A rectangle is a quadrilateral with opposite parallel sides of equal length and four equal right angles of 90 degrees each. The figure below shows a rectangle.

The opposite sides of a rectangle are equal and parallel to each other.

It has four equal angles of 90 degrees.

The diagonals bisect each other.

The sum of the angles in a rectangle is 360 degrees.

Remember that to bisect means to divide into parts.

A square is a quadrilateral with opposite sides parallel to each other. They also have four equal angles and sides. Just like the rectangle, the angles are 90 degrees each. The figure below is a square.

All sides of a square are equal.

The opposite sides are parallel.

The diagonals bisect each angle.

It has four equal angles of 90 degrees.

The length of the diagonals is longer than the sides of the square.

The sum of the angles in a square is 360 degrees.

The rhombus is a quadrilateral with equal sides. The opposite sides are parallel to each other. A rhombus also has equal opposite angles.

The opposite sides of a rhombus are equal and parallel.

The opposite angles of a rhombus are equal.

The diagonals bisect each other.

The diagonals of a rhombus bisect each angle.

A rhombus, square, and rectangle are known as parallelograms. You can find out more about them from our article on the Properties of parallelograms.

A trapezoid is a quadrilateral. However, it is **not** a parallelogram because it has just **one** pair of parallel sides. The parallel sides are called the bases, and the other two sides are called the legs. The angles in a trapezoid are called base angles.

Just

**one**pair of the opposite sides (the base) are parallel.The sum of any 2 angles next to each other is 180 degrees.

There are a few types of trapezoids that give themselves additional unique properties. You can read more about these in the article on Trapezoids.

The kite is our final type of special quadrilateral. It has two pairs of congruent sides that are adjacent to each other. The figure below shows a kite.

- It has two pairs of congruent sides.
- It has two pairs of adjacent sides.
- The angles opposite each other from the diagonals are equal.
- The diagonals bisect each other at right angles.

You may need to find the area or the perimeter of the quadrilaterals. The formula used to get these depends on the quadrilateral in question. You can find more details in the Area of plane figures folder. Let's see the various formulas used to get the area and perimeter of special quadrilaterals.

The area of a rectangle is the product of its length (L) and breadth (B). A rectangle has equal opposite sides. So, when finding the area, you need to use the value of one of its opposite sides. You can determine the perimeter by adding all the sides together. Let's look at the formulas:

A square has four equal sides. Let's look at the area and perimeter of a square.

The area of a rhombus is half the product of the length of its diagonals. The perimeter of a rhombus is the summation of all its equal sides or 4 times the side length.

The area of a trapezoid is half the product of the sum of the parallel sides and the height. The perimeter of a trapezoid is the sum of all the sides.

The area is a kite if half the product of the diagonals.

In the diagram above, the area is

- Special quadrilaterals are quadrilaterals with some or all equal sides and angles.
- Special quadrilaterals are kites, squares, rhombuses, rectangles, and trapezoids.
- Special quadrilaterals have individual properties as well as some common ones.
- The formula used to calculate the area and perimeter of special quadrilaterals depends on the quadrilateral in question.

Special quadrilaterals are quadrilaterals with some or all equal sides and angles.

A quadrilateral is made up of four sides and four angles.

Examples of special quadrilaterals are square, rectangle, rhombus and trapezoid.

More about Special quadrilaterals

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