Try Our Apps


What does the eggplant emoji really mean?


[par-uh-graf, -grahf] /ˈpær əˌgræf, -ˌgrɑf/
a distinct portion of written or printed matter dealing with a particular idea, usually beginning with an indentation on a new line.
a note, item, or brief article, as in a newspaper.
verb (used with object)
to divide into paragraphs.
to write or publish paragraphs about, as in a newspaper.
to express in a paragraph.
Origin of paragraph
1515-25; earlier paragraphe < Greek paragraphḗ marked passage; see para-1, graph
Related forms
paragraphism, noun
[par-uh-gruh-fis-ti-kuh l] /ˌpær ə grəˈfɪs tɪ kəl/ (Show IPA),
subparagraph, noun
unparagraphed, adjective
well-paragraphed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for paragraph
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
British Dictionary definitions for paragraph


/ˈpærəˌɡrɑːf; -ˌɡræf/
(in a piece of writing) one of a series of subsections each usually devoted to one idea and each usually marked by the beginning of a new line, indentation, increased interlinear space, etc
(printing) the character ¶, used as a reference mark or to indicate the beginning of a new paragraph
a short article in a newspaper
verb (transitive)
to form into paragraphs
to express or report in a paragraph
Derived Forms
paragraphic (ˌpærəˈɡræfɪk), paragraphical, adjective
paragraphically, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin paragraphus, from Greek paragraphos line drawing attention to part of a text, from paragraphein to write beside, from para-1 + graphein to write
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for paragraph

late 15c., from Middle French paragraphe "division of text" (13c., Old French paragrafe), from Medieval Latin paragraphus "sign for start of a new section of discourse" (the sign looked something like a stylized letter -P-), from Greek paragraphos "short stroke in the margin marking a break in sense," also "a passage so marked," literally "anything written beside," from paragraphein "write by the side," from para- "beside" (see para- (1)) + graphein "to write" (see -graphy).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
paragraph in Culture

paragraph definition

A basic unit of prose. It is usually composed of several sentences that together develop one central idea. The main sentence in a paragraph is called the topic sentence.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for paragraph

Word Value for paragraph

Scrabble Words With Friends