Thursday, September 12, 2013

Commonly Used Prepositions

The name “preposition” (pre + position) means “place before”. Prepositions
usually come before another word, usually a noun or noun phrase:

noun phrase
gerund (verb in -ing form)

If a preposition does not come before another word, it is still closely linked to another word:

Who did you talk to?
To whom did you talk?
I talked to Jane.

Many prepositions can also be adverbs:

They are in the kitchen. preposition
Please come in. adverb

A few prepositions can also be conjunctions:

Everyone came but Tara. preposition
I asked her but she didn’t answer. Conjunction
We went aboard the boat.
Is there a doctor aboard the plane?

What do you think about Mary?
Let’s talk about something different.
I’ve just read a book about President Kennedy.
The lion was pacing about its cage.

We are flying above the clouds.
We live in the hills, 1,000 metres above sea-level.
It’s only two degrees above freezing point. [+2ºC]
Who came above you in the test results?

We drove across the desert.
The dog ran across the road.
There is a bridge across the river.

after (also conj.)
We had lunch [1pm] after the meeting [11am].
Let’s meet the day after tomorrow.

Did you vote for or against the suggestion?
He put his bicycle against the wall.

We walked along the beach for two miles.
There are trees along the road.
The toilet is along the corridor.

Their boat came alongside our boat.
Team A worked alongside Team B during construction.

amidst (poetic)
I couldn’t hear her amid the noise.
We were lost amidst the trees.

amongst (UK)
Is there a doctor among us?
There were secret police among the crowd.
I was amongst strangers. I didn’t know anyone.

He seems to be anti my idea.
Some people are anti everything.

We walked around the town for an hour.
They all sat around the camp fire.
There is a big fence around the house.
He was born around 1570.
Let’s meet around 7pm.

as (also conj.)
He is working as a waiter.
The risk is as nothing compared to the profit.
Ram is as tall as Anthony.

She sat astride the horse.

He is at school.
We first met at a party.
Let’s start the meeting at 9 o’clock.
He started work at 17 (years of age).
We are aiming at sales of $1,000,000.

atop (poetic)
The church is situated atop a hill.

Everyone came bar Angela.
He is the best bar none.

Barring rain, we’ll play tennis tomorrow.

before (also conj.)
We had lunch [1pm] before the meeting [3pm].
We met the day before yesterday.
She was before me in the queue.
I would rather die before doing that.

There is a police car behind us. It’s following us.
We have a garden behind our house.
The child was hiding behind the tree.
I am behind your project. I will support it.
Veronica finished behind Shirley in the race.
She is behind the other children in her class.

Much of Holland is below sea-level.
There is a family in the flat below us.
The temperature is 5 degrees below freezing point. [-5ºC]
I came below Veronica in the test.
You can buy it if it’s below $50.

Our garage is beneath our house.
The tunnel runs beneath the sea.
Laurence is beneath the General Manager.
It was beneath his dignity to do that.

The river runs beside our house.
James was sitting beside Miriam.

What shall we have besides coffee?

Tara was sitting between Ram and Ati.
Between you and me, I think she’s crazy.
 I can meet you between 1pm and 2pm.

Can you see someone in the distance, beyond that house?
This is too difficult. It’s beyond me.
The meeting continued beyond midnight.

but (also conj.)
Everyone came but Andrea.

We came by car.
Fireworks were invented by the Chinese.
He was shot by a professional killer.
It happened by accident.
He lost the race by five seconds.
The room is 10 meters by 6 meters.
We must finish by Tuesday.
We were sitting by the window.
By my calculation he must be 73.

He died circa 1270.

Your teacher talked to me concerning your homework.
I have some questions concerning your decision.

Considering the poor quality, I think the price is too high.
I think I must be going, considering the time.

There were four people, or five counting the baby.
That makes $70, not counting the tax.

I have a study-cum-bedroom.
She is a kind of secretary-cum-receptionist.

We went swimming despite the cold water.
He passed the test despite being ill.

They ran down the hill.
The post office is down the road.
They have had many wars down the years.

He fell asleep during the meeting.
I want to go swimming during the weekend.
I was bored during the whole film.

You can have any color except blue.
They all came except Stephen.

I can eat anything excepting pork.
Excepting Jo, everyone was present.

It costs $70, excluding $10 for delivery. (Total =$80.)
We open every day excluding Christmas Day.

We had coffee following lunch.
He couldn’t work following his illness.

for (also conj.)
This is for you.
Do you want to go for a walk?
You use a corkscrew for opening bottles.
Cigarettes are bad for you.
I’m saving for a new car.
Is this the road for Rome?
They passed me over for John.
Is this the train for Cambridge?
I bought it for $10.
We worked for three hours.
Keep walking for two kilometres.

Where do you come from?
This letter is from my wife.
I bought this car from Henry.
They prevented me from entering.
My car is different from yours.
We worked from Monday to Wednesday.
Paper is made from wood.
It can cost anything from $5 to $15.
The police took my driving licence from me.
He died from overwork.

He is in very good health, given his age.
Given the time, you ought to leave now.

gone (UK)
It’s certainly gone 11 o’clock. It must be 11.30.
He’s gone 50. He must be nearly 60 years old.

Monkeys live in the jungle.
John is the man with his hand in his pocket.
I live in an apartment.
She lives in Bangkok.
Tara was born in 1977.
Trains were invented in the nineteenth century.
I’ll come back in two weeks.
Let’s meet in the morning.
There are 60 seconds in a minute.

The price is $70 including $10 for delivery. (Total= $70.)
There were four of us, including the baby.

It was dark inside the tunnel.
My modem is inside my computer. It’s an internal modem.

John went into that shop.
If you heat ice it turns into water.
We cut the cake into ten pieces.
Five into ten makes two.

10 less 3 = 7.

She is like her sister.
She sings like a bird.
It’s not like John to complain.
Do it like this.
I feel like swimming.
It looks like rain.
I want something cold, like iced-coffee.

10 minus 3 = 7.
The temperature is minus 30 degrees centigrade.

The school is near the post office.
It’s 20 December. We are very near Christmas Day.

Notwithstanding the low price, I don’t want it.
They went swimming, notwithstanding the rain.
They went swimming, the rain notwithstanding.

I live in the house at the end of the road.
Where is the key of the car?
Do you like the work of Shakespeare?
What was the cost of this book?
He lives in the City of Westminster.
It was kind of you to help me.
This is the cause of the problem.
He died of cancer.
Most tables are made of wood.
Can I have a cup of coffee?
I know some of these people.
I don’t know any of these people.
He lives south of London.
He lives in the south of London.

Please take your shoes off the table.
Keep off the grass.
It fell off the table and broke.
They live in a street off Fifth Avenue.

Please don’t put your shoes on the table.
The picture is on page 7.
We live on a busy road. It’s very noisy.
She is sunbathing on the beach.
Is there water on the Moon?
I need a book on bio-chemistry.
My birthday is on Monday.
I start work on 7 May.
Let’s meet on the weekend. (US)
I’ll see you on Christmas Day.
You must be on time.
He broke his leg on getting out of the car.

onto (US)
see on to
The cat jumped onto the chair.
The police are onto us. (slang)

There is a post office opposite my house.
She sat opposite him and looked into his eyes.

I don’t live in London. I live outside London.
It was very cold outside the car.
This is outside my scope.

We are flying over the mountains.
Put the blanket over the bed.
The cat jumped over the wall.
Let’s discuss it over dinner.
The king ruled over the country for many years.
The town is just over the border.
It cost over $50. It was $53.25.
There is rain over the whole country.
It took over an hour to do my homework.
The population has increased over the past twenty years.
Can you stay with us over Christmas?

I saw you yesterday when we drove past your school.
The post office is just past the police station.
Don’t work past your bed-time.
This is difficult. It’s past me.
It’s nearly ten minutes past five. 5:09 to be precise.

We cannot supply you pending payment.
Pending his return, we can do nothing.
There were many arguments pending the negotiations.

The speed limit is 70 miles per hour.
The carpet costs $10 per square metre.

2 plus 2 = 4.
There will be three of us, plus the baby.

Are you pro capital punishment?
He is generally pro new ideas.

I would like to speak to you regarding my homework.
Regarding John, let’s talk later.

I would like to speak to you respecting my homework.
I am writing to you respecting our latest products.

I live round the corner.
They all sat round the fire.
There is a hedge round the house.

save (formal)
All save Mrs Jones were present.

saving (formal)
Saving yourself, nobody thanked me.

since (also conj.)
I haven’t seen Josef since Monday.
Mr Brown has worked in a bank since 1985.

than (also conj.)
He is a writer than whom there is no finer.
Your car is bigger than my car.

thru (US)
The train goes through a tunnel.
I can see light through the keyhole.
You have been through a difficult experience.
You went through a red light.
The error occurred through my own stupidity.
They worked Monday through Thursday. [US]

It is raining throughout the whole country.
He worked throughout the day, and most of the night.

till (also conj.)
I work from 9am till 5pm.
Please wait till I come.

Could you give this to Kob?
My car does 10 miles to the litre.
To his surprise, the door was open.
The museum is open from Monday to Friday.
The time is ten to five. [4.50]

Touching your homework, I think we need to speak.

toward (US)
towards (UK)
He drove off toward(s) the mountain.
I’d better go. It’s getting toward(s) midnight.
He contributed $100,000 toward(s) the new building.
It’s the first step toward(s) peace.
He has a positive attitude toward(s) his work.

The mouse ran under the chair.
The bucket is under the sink.
Submarines can travel under water.
We drove under a bridge.
I have a T-shirt under my pullover.
Who do you work under? Who is your boss?
I am under orders from the President.
What is the subject under discussion?
Under the company rules, we can’t do that.
Please buy it if it’s under $50.

The nurse put a pillow underneath his head.
There is a big cellar underneath our house.

That’s very unusual. It’s unlike Andrea to be so rude.
This problem is unlike any we have met before.

until (formal, also conj.)
They continued the meeting until 11pm.
Please wait until I come.

Jack and Jill ran up the hill.
There is a post office up the street.

upon (formal)
Please don’t put your shoes upon the table.
There are now no dinosaurs upon Earth.
I need a book upon bio-chemistry.
We met upon a Monday.
He broke his leg upon getting out of the car.

He was the judge in the case of Gore versus Bush.
We should choose peace versus war.

We flew from Paris to Bangkok via Dubai.

Do you live with your parents?
He’s been with for two years.
I discussed it with her.
With your permission, I’d like to go.
If you mix red with yellow you get orange.
Muriel is the girl with black hair.
Do you want to come with us?
I made this chair with my own hands.
You’ll forget her with time.

There is a modem within the computer.
I will finish within 30 minutes.
He lives within 10 miles of his work.
It’s not within my power to help you.

I want trousers without buttons.
I came without my wife because she is working.
He watched without speaking.

This car is worth $10,000.


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