topic sentence

noun
a sentence that expresses the essential idea of a paragraph or larger section, usually appearing at the beginning.
Also, topical sentence.


Origin:
1915–20

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World English Dictionary
topic sentence
 
n
a sentence in a paragraph that expresses the main idea or point of the whole paragraph

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

topic sentence definition


The main sentence in a paragraph, often the first sentence. It briefly conveys the essential idea of the paragraph.

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
The essay is organized into several paragraphs, each of which begins with a
  tidy topic sentence.
People talk for hours without uttering a single topic sentence.
Model strategies for writing a topic sentence for narrative writing.
Distinguish between a thesis statement and a topic sentence.
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