"Comprise" vs. "Comprise of" and "Compose"

Published on 07 Dec, 2016

Generic Grammar

Some expressions in English are easy to get wrong.

Fortunately, with a little help, they’re also easy to get right.

Comprise and compose are among the many tricky expressions you shouldn’t misuse.

Comprise primarily means consist of, as in ‘the federation comprises fifteen states’ (the whole comprises the parts). 

To compose is to make up, as in ‘expats compose 40% of the state’s population’ (the parts compose the whole). 

The construction comprise of, as in ‘the property comprises of bedroom, kitchen, and bathroom’, is incorrect.

Make it Easy


  • The whole comprises the parts
  • The parts compose the whole