I have read both two uses:

  1. The combinations of a, b and c, taken two at a time, are ab, bc, ac.

  2. We can not help but noticing a harmonious combination between classic and contemporary.

Are both uses interchangeable? Perhaps substitute combinations among for combinations of in the first sentence? Any idea is appreciated.


When two or more things are combined, it is a combination of them. You cannot have a combination 'between' or 'among.' 'Of' is the correct preposition to use.

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  • Thank you Tony. Do you mean that only combination of is right. So the expressions of combination between and combination among are incorrect. – macio.Jun Aug 3 '12 at 10:32
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    @macio.Jun Yes, that is my position. 'Between' and 'among' are incorrect and I don't believe there are any circumstances where a preposition other than 'of' is possible or acceptable. – Tony Balmforth Aug 3 '12 at 10:38

What Tony said. Here's the ngram enter image description here

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