paragraph

[par-uh-graf, -grahf]
noun
1.
a distinct portion of written or printed matter dealing with a particular idea, usually beginning with an indentation on a new line.
3.
a note, item, or brief article, as in a newspaper.
verb (used with object)
4.
to divide into paragraphs.
5.
to write or publish paragraphs about, as in a newspaper.
6.
to express in a paragraph.

Origin:
1515–25; earlier paragraphe < Greek paragraphḗ marked passage; see para-1, graph

paragraphism, noun
paragraphistical [par-uh-gruh-fis-ti-kuhl] , adjective
subparagraph, noun
unparagraphed, adjective
well-paragraphed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
paragraph (ˈpærəˌɡrɑːf, -ˌɡræf)
 
n
1.  (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
2.  printing the character ¶, used as a reference mark or to indicate the beginning of a new paragraph
3.  a short article in a newspaper
 
vb
4.  to form into paragraphs
5.  to express or report in a paragraph
 
[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]
 
paragraphic
 
adj
 
para'graphical
 
adj
 
para'graphically
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

paragraph
1490, from M.Fr. paragraphe (13c., O.Fr. paragrafe), from M.L. paragraphus "sign for start of a new section of discourse" (the sign looked something like a stylized letter -P-), from Gk. paragraphos "short stroke in the margin marking a break in sense," also "a passage so marked," lit. "anything written
beside," from paragraphein "write by the side," from para- "beside" + graphein "to write."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

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 American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
It will immediately set your statement apart from those-and they are
  legion-that begin with a standard expository paragraph.
Any honest paragraph of straightforward explanation will usually require a good
  three pages of caveats and disclaimers.
Ask them to read this paragraph and list the hammerhead's main food sources.
Not to mention the spurious comma in the second sentence of the second
  paragraph.
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