Example of an Analytical Paragraph/History Essay

To better understand drafting a well-planned argument, let’s take a closer look at an example of a concise analytical paragraph. Please see comments at the bottom for more explanation:

A topic sentence, or thesis, that details the main point(s) of the paragraph:


Alexander the Great was a successful ruler because he created long lasting effects on cultures that still continue to this day[jr1] .


Example (Think of an example that helps support your thesis statement):


An example of his legacy would be the creation of a Hellenistic Society[jr2] .


Explanation of Example (What does this specific example mean? Be specific. Expand your example by providing additional important details):


Hellenistic is the combination of Greek, Persian, and Egyptian cultures. During this remarkable time, people were encouraged to pursue a formal education and develop many different kinds of art. New forms of math, science, and art design make a great impact on contemporary society[jr3] .


How does the example prove your thesis (Why is this example important? How does it support the main claim of your thesis statement?):


If this new way of life hadn’t been as successful as it was, Alexander’s legacy wouldn’t be as memorable and groundbreaking[jr4] .


Conclusion Sentence (Sum up the main argument of your paragraph in one sentence):


By conquering many countries and merging cultures, Alexander the Great will be credited in history for his many achievements[jr5] .

 [jr1]The thesis statement is clear. It identifies the main point of the paragraph.

 [jr2]The writer introduces the example with a transitional phrase (“for example”) and uses a specific historical detail (“Hellenistic Society”).

 [jr3]The writer defines “Hellenistic Society.” This further explains the historical detail to the reader.

 [jr4]The writer answers the question: Why is this example important? There is a clear connection made to the overall argument of the paragraph.

 [jr5]The concluding sentence sums up the main point of the paragraph.  It reminds the reader of the main point- or thesis statement- as well as the example used in the paragraph.