# How to create a page with two columns that can span pages to achieve my special goal?

I am a Chinese plain TeX user and also a beginner. Now I encounter a hard question, that is

I must write some numbered English paragraphs at the left column and its corresponding Chinese translations at the right column which have the same number with the English one. The first lines of the English paragraph and its corresponding Chinese translations should be located at the same horizontal line.

Here is an example if I can't explain this question clearly:

My method to solve this problem is using \halign with two \vtop, but it can't span pages or produce overfull, underfull \vbox.

\newcount\mycount
\mycount=1
\bigskip
\halign{\tabskip=.5in
\vtop{\hsize=3in\noindent\number\mycount.\enspace#}&
\tabskip=0pt\vtop{\hsize=3in
...}


so ugly it is :-(

Anyone else has a better solution?

You may be interested in parallel package.

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}
\usepackage{parallel}
\usepackage{lipsum} %% dummy text
\usepackage{microtype} %% Just for my taste
\usepackage{enumitem}
%%%--------------- set a newlist for english--------------------
\newlist{eng}{enumerate}{1}
\setlist[eng]{align=left,itemindent=2.5em,leftmargin=0pt,
rightmargin=.51\textwidth,label=\textbf{\arabic*.}}
%%%--------------- set a newlist for chinese --------------------
\newlist{chin}{enumerate}{1}
\setlist[chin]{align=left,itemindent=2.5em,leftmargin=.51\textwidth,
rightmargin=0pt,label=\textbf{\roman*.}}
%%----------------------------------------------------------
\begin{document}
\begin{Parallel}{.49\textwidth}{.49\textwidth}
\ParallelLText{%
\begin{eng}[series=english]
\item \lipsum[1]
\end{eng}
}%
\ParallelRText{%
\begin{chin}[series=chinese]
\item \lipsum[2]
\end{chin}
}%
\ParallelPar
\ParallelLText{%
\begin{eng}[resume*=english]
\item \lipsum[3]
\end{eng}
}%
\ParallelRText{%
\begin{chin}[resume*=chinese]
\item\lipsum[4]
\end{chin}
}%
\ParallelPar
\ParallelLText{%
\begin{eng}[resume*=english]
\item \lipsum[5]
\end{eng}
}%
\ParallelRText{%
\begin{chin}[resume*=chinese]
\item\lipsum[6]
\end{chin}
}%
\ParallelPar
\ParallelLText{%
\begin{eng}[resume*=english]
\item \lipsum[7]
\end{eng}
}%
\ParallelRText{%
\begin{chin}[resume*=chinese]
\item\lipsum[10]
\end{chin}
}%
\end{Parallel}
\end{document}


• Nice, but one inconvenient is that you have to hardcode the numbers... – jub0bs Mar 18 '13 at 2:20
• @Jubobs: No more hard coding :-) – user11232 Mar 18 '13 at 7:59
• Please note the plain-tex -tag. – morbusg Mar 18 '13 at 8:27
• Harish, I have read the codes of this package today and gotten the main idea. Now I have realized a tiny edition for my purpose by using palin tex. You advice is very useful for me. – Lucas Li Mar 18 '13 at 10:12
• @morbusg Uh! Didn't see that. Any how I am not good in TeX. Keep it a secret ;-) – user11232 Mar 18 '13 at 11:51