I would like to number paragraphs for a covering report I am writing. Paragraphs should increment and not reset with new sections. The text should not be bold. Here is what I have tried

  {\z@}{0.25ex \@plus 1ex \@minus .2ex}{-1em}%

This has been hacked from various questions on this site.

  \paragraph{Testing 1}
  \paragraph{Testing 2}

gives me 1 Testing 1 2 Testing 2

desired format is

1 Testing 1
2 Testing 2

Where am I going wrong?

Also what is fontfamily{phv}. Is this different from my default font?

  • Have a look at this answer it might fit for your need. tex.stackexchange.com/a/10524/31058
    – Ludovic C.
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:00
  • @moadeep Are you looking for something like "(19)" at the beginning of a paragraph, or e.g. as a marginpar? Show us what you would like to have!
    – Keks Dose
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:05
  • @KeksDose Question edited. I would like something like "(19)" at the beginning of each paragraph. The reason being I need to cross reference paragraphs to a table in another chapter
    – moadeep
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:08
  • 1
    I guess you have a line like \setcounter{secnumdepth}{4} Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:15
  • @karlkoeller yes. The number is incrementing as expected. My major issue is the extra 0.0.0.num before num
    – moadeep
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:16

3 Answers 3


\paragraph is like \section the argument should be the title not the whole paragraph, and it should only be used after a higher level sectioning unit (\subsubsection)



Then you can use

\mypara blah blah blah
\mypara foo bar baz
  • 2
    Excellent thanks. Can I make the number bold?
    – moadeep
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:30
  • 3
    @moadeep \textbf{\thepara} Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:52
  • Is there a way to make the paragraph title bold also?
    – flamsmark
    Commented Aug 31, 2013 at 0:03
  • 4
    @flamsmark these are untitled paragraphs, if you want titled paragraphs you need something more like \newcommand\mypara[1]{\par\refstepcounter{para}\textbf{\thepara\space#1\space}} Commented Aug 31, 2013 at 8:52

This is as simple as:


If you just wish to also have them in the table of contents:


Answered taken from How can I number paragraphs without higher level counters?


Using the idea from this answer:


\usepackage{mparhack}   % get marginpars to always show up on the correct side (need to compile twice)
\usepackage{lipsum}     % for dummy text



    \parnum \hspace{1em}%

   \everypar{\noindent \stepcounter{parcount}\parnum \hspace{1em}}%


\p \lipsum[1]




it yields


  • 2
    If you use \refstepcounter instead of \stepcounter paragraphs can be used with \label / \ref Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 15:26
  • 1
    also, don't do anything rash, like using a list environment (itemize, enumerate, etc) -- they destroy \everypar Commented Aug 28, 2013 at 10:28
  • This is the best solution, because it does the numbering automatically within the environment. The other solution requires a command to number the paragraph. So this one is better.
    – HSchmale
    Commented Nov 3, 2015 at 20:12
  • This breaks if you interpose a \section{}.
    – g33kz0r
    Commented Sep 25, 2017 at 0:54
  • @g33kz0r out of interest why does a section break this ?
    – jk.
    Commented Nov 27, 2018 at 17:10

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