Prepositions are function words like "to", "over", "through", "in". The meaning of a sentence can be dramatically altered by choosing the wrong preposition.

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What's the etymology of 'of' after verbs?

(TL;DR) While reading about preposition of on OED (eg avail of, enquire of), I encountered a possible explanation: quoted below, OED claims that the postverbal of originates from the genitive case, ...
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66 views

What preposition to use with file extensions?

Basically, should I mentally decode file extension abbreviations, and thus: Documents in PDF (in format) Photos according to JPEG (... group) Alternatives: Shall I keep it as PDF? Could ...
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85 views

Prepositional madness! Of, or in?

This has been bothering me for the last day or so. Would you say: "I have a mind to send him a strongly-worded letter, just to see if he can read five words of it." Or: "I have a mind to ...
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71 views

Usage of preposition 'in' - St Petersburg at night

Which is the correct form of the following caption for a photo: Night beauty in St Petersburg St Petersburg night beauty Or does the right sentence have to be "A night beauty in St ...
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124 views

Meaning of “up” and “off” in “I live up north off some_region”

I am only familiar with sentences like I live in New York I live on the north side of New York I guess I live up north off some_region. means the place I live in is a little bit ...
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14 views

Which preposition should I use here?

Consider the following sentence: "I am disappointed that you are leaving". Now I would like to let another person know the fact: "I would like to let you know that Mark is leaving which I am ...
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25 views

'In the ranks' OR 'With the ranks'

Which of the following two phrases is correct? I'd put him right there in the ranks of the best anthropologists out there. OR I'd put him right there with the ranks of the best ...
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23 views

Keep on discussing vs Keep on discussing it

We kept discussing. We kept discussing whether God exists. Is an object (in this case, God's existence) necessary in this sentence? For example, with writing, it seems that an object ...
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63 views

Is “out of” instead of “from” colloquial, always okay or simply wrong?

Here an example sentence written by a pupil of mine: Through the British Empire, which resulted out of Britain's urge to build up its economy, Britain was connected to a lot of different countries ...
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25 views

Correct usage of To vs On

I had recently been chided for inadvertently using "on" to describe strapping an accessory (on/to) a car mirror - for obvious reasons. While "on" may be perceived as inappropriate or even impoilte, my ...
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28 views

“After power is switched on router” - preposition or a part of the verb?

In the manual of my router, I have found this sentence. I am quite unsure as to what it means and if it is correct After power is switched on router XYZ starts internal wifi network.
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64 views

“Around” and/or “About”

I know it is right to state: Is the teacher around ? But is it equally right to state: Is the teacher about ? I have heard native English speakers say the latter, but is it correct?
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38 views

Difference among “to hear”, “to hear of” and “to hear about”?

Will anyone kindly explain the difference between the three terms to me? Thanks.
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47 views

“Pain to” vs. “pain in”

Is it correct to say: He couldn't stand for long because of pain to his leg. or should it be: He couldn't stand for long because of pain in his leg. or are both acceptable, or is neither?
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323 views

'in' vs. 'on' for dates

I've met the following phrase: Something happened on February 12-25, 2010. It means that some event started on February 12th and ended on February 25th. Actually the text was about the Olympic ...
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130 views

“father to” vs. “father of”

Would it be grammatically correct to write Mister X is father to a son and a daughter or should one preferably choose the preposition of? Mister X is father of a son and a daughter. ...
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105 views

Can verb 'grant' be used with preposition 'with?'

Could someone explain to me if the word 'grant' can be used with 'with' and what it means? (I checked with many dictionaries, but couldn't find an example used in that way.) example sentence in an ...
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42 views

In + pres. participle constructions (“In performing,” “in using”)

I'm working on preparing some text for translation into Spanish and have come across this construction, which sounds perfectly fine to me, but I've been unable to find any definition or description ...
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90 views

“Classify data in A/B/C by value x by using the function x”

This is about data classification done by computer. Data is classified into the A, B, or C rank and then the judgement result will be displayed on the screen. All the transaction is done by using ...
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173 views

sentence formation and use of preposition

how would we say "to transfer something in somebody's name" for e.g. in sentence i would "transfer the property paper in/to/on your name" Is there a better way. Thanks in anticipation
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A synonym for “over” in “over a distance”

Could you give me the best synonym for over in this situation? Aqueduct: artificial channel for conducting water over a distance. I know it is the best preposition for this context. But I wonder ...
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273 views

The repetition of the preposition 'to' in this sentence.

Is there a work-around I can use so that I can avoid the close repetition of to in the following sentence? Clearly my advice-giver here does not know what it means for someone to decide to ...
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2k views

Difference between 'meant by' and 'meant with'?

Is there a difference in meaning or usage between 'meant by' and 'meant with'? Many questions about meanings with this tag have the wording 'What is meant by...?'. In the text I am currently reading ...
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Parallel structures problem with their prepositions and helping verbs

This might clear it up. It is not about reducing the consumption of sugars or carbohydrates but about moderating the consumption of them. Does this work correctly? Another example: Any ...
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Which is the preposition to go with “best”? Is it “best at”?

Is it right to say: We take pride in doing what we are best at, delivering unsurpassed levels of service, so our customers can do what they are best at.
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Differences between “in a list” and “on a list”

Generally speaking, is there any difference between saying "in a list" vs. "on a list"? There's already a similar question, but that was about one specific example with a specific answer; if ...
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Confused about the use of “to” in a quote

The former Manchester United star has now hit a record 25 La Liga hat-tricks and has 45 goals this term to lead Lionel Messi by three in the race for the Pichichi. I am confused as to the ...
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to switch up, to change Up - why are these now taking the preposition up?

Does anyone know the root of the emergence of usage of the preposition "up" with the verbs "to switch" and "to change"?
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Determining if “than” is used as conjunction or preposition

"than" can be used as a conjunction and as a preposition. I want to be able to tell for any given sentence containing "than" which grammatical function it has in that sentence. My current ...
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21 views

After verbs, how does 'from' compare with 'of'?

(TL;DR) 1. I've been plagued by the postverbal use of the preposition 'of'. After verbs, when describing attributes like origin or source, what are the differences between 'from' and 'of'? The verbs ...
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28 views

Burn a hole in the road?

my question is: In Marry The Night's lyrics, Lady Gaga sings "I'm gonna burn a hole in the road". Why is that? I've heard the expression "on the road" but not "in the road". I don't speak English ...
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Usage of prepositions

I've come across this sentence: Its current market value would astound its builders, but then so would much else about its leafy neighborhood. I understand that the builders would be astounded ...
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Choosing a preposition: A train TO/FOR class

What is the correct preposition to use in this case? For example, in the sentence "I usually study in the park before taking the train for class", should we replace the for with to? Or are they both ...
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Usage of 'on' preposition before words like 'next'/'previous'

As I found out on the internet and this site, usually the preposition on before words like week/month name or just in a phrase such as: [something-something] next week is not used. However, I ...
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prepositions “in” and “at” with school subjects

I came across a phrase: "My brother is first in Maths" Is it possible to say "he is first at Maths" instead of "he is first in Maths"? I thought that I should say "at" when I speak about somebody's ...
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when “near” could be considered incorrect grammatically or semantically

Let's verify the word "nearby" is part of a constituent NP in the OP's #2 example: OP.2a. I live in a town nearby. <-- OP's #2 example it-clefts: OP.2b. It is [in a town nearby] that I live. ...
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Should it be on or over?

From Aljazeera News: Saudi Arabia's foreign minister has said the kingdom is ready "to take necessary measures if needed" over Yemen's political crisis, after denouncing Iran's alleged role in the ...
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Function of “about”- practised physiotherapy for about 6 months

I practised physiotherapy for about 6 months. I understand that "about" can take forms such as an adv, adj, preposition. Though I can rephrase the sentence, however, I am curious to find out ...
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Place of “either” for different propositions

I want to work on either X or Y. I have to change that sentence this way: I want to work either on X or in the realm of Y. Is there any problem with it? I am doubtful about the proper ...
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79 views

Countries “of the world” or “in the world”

How should I say: There are many threats faced by almost all countries IN the world or There are many threats faced by almost all countries OF the world I used to say "IN the world". ...
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The meaning of “going over” something

I'm fond of old especially folk songs, but as a foreigner I often have troubles interpreting some phrases. Here is one from Wayfaring stranger: I'm going there to see my father I'm going there no ...
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Is there a comprehensive look at articles of dress and their prepositions

As mentioned in the title, I'm looking for a comprehensive answer to the question of which prepositions go with different articles of clothing: e.g., in/with a tie; in/with a hat; in/with gloves, ...
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correct usage and punctuation of a nonrestrictive clause with which?

S1: John was a worker at Bread Store, of which I was the manager, when he lived here. S2: John was a worker at Bread Store, which I was the manager of, when he lived here. What's the correct usage? ...
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501 views

“Provided to us” or “Provided us”?

Both the sentences/fragments below appear to be grammatical. Thanks for the help you have provided to us in the planning Thanks for the help you have provided us in the planning Is there ...
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Recommended sources for understanding the spatial and abstract meanings of English prepositions

Can anyone recommend to me a good book and any other sources where I can study in detail the spatial and abstract meanings of English prepositions? Since I am a visual learner, I would love to find ...
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72 views

“To How” or “In How”?

I have the sentence: "Since that experience, I have made changes to how I address all of my courses." Should I use "to how" or "in how" for any grammatical reason(s), or is it simply a matter of ...
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Is it recommended to include a preposition when listing several components of a sentence in parallel?

Consider the sample sentence below (quoted from a manual Here): When you evaluate a list, the Lisp interpreter looks at the first symbol in the list and then at the function definition bound to ...
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What does it mean “off one's look”

I've come across the following passage in a script. PERSON 1: And tomatoes are actually berries! The others look at him with annoyed confusion. PERSON 1: (off their looks) What? It’s ...
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When to use 'enroll into'?

When should we use enroll into? What is the difference of 'enroll into', 'enroll in', 'enroll at', 'enroll on'?
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How did 'for' originate in 'to ask for'?

[OED:] 9. a. simply. To ask a thing. (Now more familiarly to ask for: see 16.) 16. a. To ask (after obs.) for a thing. OED appears to claim the equivalence of 9 and 16. However, 16 does ...