Types of paragraphs

A paragraph is the smallest unit of prose composition. A paragraph may be defined as a group of sentences relating to a single topic. There are several different types of paragraphs. Here is an overview.


In a descriptive paragraph you describe a scene or a thing or a person. The aim is to give a vivid picture of the object. Only the significant details should be given in a descriptive paragraph.


In a narrative paragraph you narrate an incident. The ideas are presented in a coherent manner. Your account must be clear and cogent, and, when the occasion demands it, dramatic and full of suspense.

A paragraph of definition

In a paragraph of definition you define a person or an object. When you define things use precise words and expressions. Be objective, scientific and dispassionate in defining things.

A paragraph of similarities

When you compare two things you have to bring out the similarities between them in a convincing manner. Sometimes you will need to use a simile or a metaphor.

A paragraph of differences

When you contrast two things, the differences have to be expressed in an explicit manner. Use linking words like but, whereas, on the other hand, on the contrary etc.

Statement of facts and figures

There are paragraphs which do not belong to any of the above categories and are mainly concerned with giving facts and figures in a clear and emphatic manner.