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15 Making paragraphs

To start a paragraph, just type some text. To end the current paragraph, put an empty line. This is three paragraphs, the separation of which is made by two empty lines.

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession
of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.

However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his
first entering a neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds
of the surrounding families, that he is considered the rightful property
of some one or other of their daughters.

``My dear Mr. Bennet,'' said his lady to him one day,
``have you heard that Netherfield Park is let at last?''

A paragraph separator is made of a sequence of at least one blank line, at least one of which is not terminated by a comment. A blank line is a line that is empty or made only of blank characters such as space or tab. Comments in source code are started with a % and span up to the end of line. In the following example the two columns are identical:

\documentclass[twocolumn]{article}
\begin{document}
First paragraph.

Second paragraph.
\newpage
First paragraph.
      
  % separator lines may contain blank characters.
  		
Second paragraph.
\end{document}

Once LaTeX has gathered all of a paragraph’s contents it divides that content into lines in a way that is optimized over the entire paragraph (see Line breaking).

There are places where a new paragraph is not permitted. Don’t put a blank line in math mode (see Modes); here the blank line before the \end{equation}

\begin{equation}
  2^{|S|} > |S|

\end{equation}

will get you the error ‘Missing $ inserted’. Similarly, the blank line in this \section argument

\section{aaa

bbb}

gets ‘Runaway argument? {aaa ! Paragraph ended before \@sect was complete’.


Unofficial LaTeX2e reference manual