A candidate’s understanding of a given passage can be judged in several ways. you may be asked to paraphrase or summaries the meaning of the entire passage in a few lines. Generally, paraphrasing comprises rewriting the meaning of the given passage in your own words – while retaining the original idea or thought. However, the basic requirement would be your ability to understand and restate the passage so as to clarify its meaning. In short, a passage so as to clarify its meaning. In short, a paraphrase is an accurate summary of a passage rewritten in own words. Thus paraphrasing calls for changes in the original passage in terms of bringing about simplicity and clarity without changing the meaning.


  1. Subtile all the words or phrases that are archaic, iodiomatic or uncommom with words or phrases that are common simple and clear.
  2. WHere neccasary, rearange parts of sentnces so as to secure a normal prose-order.
  3. Where the original passage coontains long and complex sentences, restate them in shorter and simple ones.
  4. Replace figures of speech with simple ecpressions.
  5. IN case of poetry/verse, expand the tense language if necessary.
  6. It i not always necessary to find synonyms for every word in the priginal passage.Sometimes retaining the original word is the only way to convey the meaning.
  7. Do not alter the person of the original sentences/passage.
  8. A paraphase should make perfect sense to even who knows nothing of the original passage.

Example 1

WHere the mind is without fear and hear is held high:

where knowledge is free:

WHere the world in not broken into fragments by narrow domestic walls:

where tielsss stiriving stretches its arms towards perfecetion;

where the clean stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary sand of deaf habit;

where the mind is leap forwards by Thee into ever widening thought the action;’

Into that heaven of freedom, My father, let my country awake.


O God, may the people of my country be proud and fearless. Let there be no restrictions to the attainment of knowledge. Let them not be divided into narrow groups or sections on the basis of their caste or race. Let them be sincere and truthful in their utterances.

Let them constantlty endeavour to strive towards perfection. let them be guided by reason and not orthodox conventions or routine. Let them draw inspirstion from God and grow liberal and generous in thought and action. Oh Lord, let my countrymen find and forever enjoy such freedom that is comparable only to Heaven.

Example 2

My heart leaps up when i behold,

A rainbow in the sky.

so was it when my life began,

So is it one I am a man,

So be it when I shall grow old,

Or let me side,

The child is father of the man;

And i could wish my days to be,

Bound each to each by natural piety.


My heart rejoices when i see a rainbow in th sky.The rainbow delighted me even when I was a little child. It gives me the same joy now, when I am a grown-up person. And I wish it continues to delight me when i grow old. I would rather not live to see a day when I cannot find such delight in nature.Habits formed in one’s childhood continue i one’s mature age. I wish the days of my life are bound to each other by that deep love that i felt for nature in childhood.

Example 3

Ye stars! Which are the poetry of heaven?

If in your bright leaves we would read the fate

Of men and empires-’tis to be forgiven.

That is our aspirations to be great,

Our destiny o’erleap their mortal state.

And claim a kindred with you, for ye are A beauty and a mystery, and create

In us such love and reverence from afar,

That fortune, fame, power, life have named themselves a star.


Oh stars, you are like the poetry of the heavens that moves our heart. It is from your brightness that we learn about the destinies of human beings and empires. Pardon us, if at times, in our aspiration to acheive greatness, we overlook our human weakness and limitations and claim a kinship with you.

Although you are so far away from us, we revere your beauty and your mysterious power so much so that all achievements – be they wealth, fame, power and life- are spoken of in terms of being star-like.

Example 4

Earth has not anything to show more fair;

Dull would he be of soul who could pass by;

A sight so touching on its majesty;

This City now doth, like a garment, wear

The beauty of the morning;silent, bare,

Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie

Open upto the fields, and to the sky;;

All bright amd glittering in the smokeless air.

Never did sun more beautifully steep

In his first splendor, valley, rock or hill;

Ne’er saw I never felt a calm so deep!

The river glideth at his own sweet will:

Dear God! The very houses seem asleep;

And all that mighty heart is lying still.


Nothing on earth is more beautiful; he who passes by unmoved by sight so majestic must surely be dull and listless in spirit. The city of London looks beautiful in the morning, as if it were clad in a beautiful garment of bright light. Ships, towers, domes, theatres and temples – they are all looking up to sky as they stand clam and bright in the clear air. Never before has the sun risen so splendidly as to bathe every valley, rock or hill with its first glorious rays. And never indeed have I felt such profound peace. The river, as if of its own will will, flows smoothly. Even the houses seem quite as people lie asleep. Indeed, it is that time of the day when the usually noisy and busy hub of London is resting peacefully.

Example 5

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever;

its loveliness increase; it will never

A bower quiet for us, and a sleep

Full of sweet dreams, and health and quiet breathing.

Therefore, on every morrow, we are wreathing

A flower band to bind us to the earth,

Spite of despondence, of the inhuman dearth

Of noble natures, of the gloomy days,

Of all the unhealthy and over-darkened ways-

Made for our searching; Yes, in spite of all,

Some shape of beauty moves away the pall

From our dark spirits.


A beautiful object is a constant source of joy. Its charm grows with the time. Far from being forgotten, a beautiful thing always provides us with a peaceful respite from the anxieties of life. It brings us soothing sleep with sweet dreams. It gives us vigour and tranquility. It is for this reason that, every day when we awaken, we engage a bond with all the beautiful objects that may keep us attached to this world. Even when we are overcome with depression, in spite of lack of large heartedness of human nature, in times of sorrow, and during all the unwholesome and disheartening ways of life, we only have to see a beautiful object to life the darkness off our spirits and to bring renewed cheer.


At times, a candidate is asked to state the gist or the meaning of a given passage, instead of paraphrasing it. IN this case you need not proceed word by word and line by line. First, read the passage carefully twice or thrice and understand what the poet/author is trying to convey. Then, express the thoughts or meaning of the given passage in your own words, and in third person. For the same, study the following examples:

Example 1

Is true freedom but to break

Fetters for our own dear sake,

And with leathern hearts, forget

That we owe mankind a debt?

No, true freedom is to shear

All the chains our brothers wear.

And with heart and hand to be

Earnest to make others free!


Here, the poet explains what true freedom is all about. Freedom is not merely about breaking free from our bonds and neglecting our fellow-beings. The poet rejects this notion of freedom as false. True freedom essentially implies that we acknowledge the debt we owe to mankind. Freedom is tainted with self-interest if we strive to rid ourselves of bondages but are indifferent to the miseries of our brethren. freedom is complete only when we endeavor to free others from all shackles. only a feeling of oneness with our fellow – beings lends freedom its true significance.

Example 2.

grant us the will to fashion as we feel,

grant us the strength to labour as we know;

grant us the purpose, ribbed and edged with steel,

to strike the blow;

knoweldge we ask not – kno

68 thoughts on “PARAPHRASING

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