How can I navigate to a certain paragraph number?

If I want to move to the 33rd line in a file, I execute M-x goto-line <RET> 33, but there does not seem to be an equivalent goto-paragraph function.

I could write a function to do this for me (i.e. go to beginning of file, then execute forward-paragraph X number of times), but I am wondering if there is a built-in function for this already.

2 Answers 2


I'm not aware of a built-in function for this, but as you already noted you can write one:

(defun goto-paragraph (arg)
  "Go to paragraph ARG."
  (interactive "nGoto paragraph: ")
  (goto-char (point-min))
  (forward-paragraph arg))
  • Out of curiosity, is there a way to launch emacs and have it automatically navigate to a paragraph in the passed file, like you can do with line numbers? For example, I can do emacs +33 file.txt to open file.txt at line 33. Could I do this for paragraph 33?
    – Ben
    Mar 15, 2017 at 14:46
  • I think so, but that is quite a bit more complicated and probably worth its own question! The short answer is that there is support for processing your own command-line options during Emacs startup. You might also be able to use --funcall or --eval.
    – glucas
    Mar 15, 2017 at 14:51

Not sure if you were already aware of this or not, but you can interactively do this without writing a function per se, using the universal argument -- in my emacs forward-paragraph is bound to "M-}", so you can go to beginning of buffer, "C-u-33-M-}" and it will jump forward 33 paragraphs. You could even capture this to a keyboard macro with a kbd-macro-query inside to ask you how many paragraphs, and then save that macro off and bind it to a key. Just to let you know that there are ways to do this without writing any Emacs Lisp at all.

  • FWIW you can also just do (say) M-33 M-} to avoid that awkward C-u...
    – stevoooo
    Mar 21, 2017 at 17:51

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