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X‐ray diffraction from single crystals of polyacrylonitrile shows that the diffuse nature of the nonequatorial scattering maxima cannot be accounted for by crystal size. The theory of paracrystals may be used to set both an upper and a lower limit to the amount of lattice distortion and yields a plausible explanation for the absence or extreme weakness of higher‐order reflections. Finally, it is shown why the diffuse maxima cannot be used directly in measuring lattice parameters and the method which must be used to obtain a more definite crystal structure for polyacrylonitrile is indicated.