Paragraphs

Markdown has several ways of formatting paragraphs.

Let's take a few lines of poetry as an example. Suppose you want to write text that looks like this:

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

Now, you might think that simply typing each verse onto its own line would be enough to solve the problem:

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

Unfortunately, you'd be wrong! This Markdown would render simply as a single straight line: Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.).

If you forcefully insert a new line, you end up breaking the togetherness:

Do I contradict myself?

Very well then I contradict myself,

(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

This is what's known as a hard break; what our poetry asks for is a soft break. You can accomplish this by inserting two spaces after each new line. This is not possible to see, since spaces are invisible, but it'd look something like this:

Do I contradict myself?··
Very well then I contradict myself,··
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

Each dot ( · ) represents a space on the keyboard.

Let's try this technique out. In the box below, insert the necessary number of spaces to make the poem render correctly:


Fantastic work!

Aside from formatting poetry, one of the common uses for these soft breaks is in formatting paragraphs in lists. Recall in the previous lesson that we inserted a new line for multiple paragraphs within a list.

In the box below, instead of using hard breaks, tighten the sub-paragraphs with soft breaks:


Et voila! You now know how to make soft breaks in Markdown!

On to the next lesson!