Questions tagged [prepositions]

Prepositions are function words like "to", "over", "through", "in". The meaning of a sentence can be dramatically altered by choosing the wrong preposition. Questions need to include enough information for the intended meaning to be deduced.

325 questions with no upvoted or accepted answers
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What's the grammatical principle behind the use of 'for' with an adjective?

The following common expressions are in the form of for in conjunction with an adjective: (give/take) for granted (leave) for dead for better/worse for sure/certain There doesn't seem to be anything ...
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1answer
1k views

What’s the reason for the zero article after a preposition and countable noun in “a change of X” and in “a switch from X to Y”?

I am a non-native speaker of English and therefore need your help. The question is: why do we use the zero article in the phrases “a change of X” and “a switch from X to Y”? For instance: a change ...
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1answer
167 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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1answer
114 views

Prepositional verb structure - “[rely] [on John]” or “[rely on] [John]”

It is difficult to determine the correct consituent structure of prepositional verbs, such as rely on someone. Either on someone forms a constituent to the exclusion of rely, as in (1), or rely on ...
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1answer
18k views

at / on/ in (the) (Math) exam

I think it is common to say I did well on the exam in AmE. I did well in the exam in BrE. Which prepositions are suitable for the following situations when we mention the exam we took? ...
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2answers
44k views

“Mistaken as” vs. “mistaken for”

I heard someone use the words mistaken as rather than mistaken for. Is this correct? If it is correct then what is the difference between the two? Is it ever wrong to use mistaken as, and if so, why? ...
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1answer
44 views

Omitting “by” preposition and the resulted phrase

Consider the following examples: I paid for it by using my credit card. I was in contact with my friends by sending letters. I learned how to dance by watching online videos if I remove the ...
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1answer
61 views

“trends from 400M visitors” vs “trends by 400M visitors”

The Overflow Blog, April 20, 2020 How the pandemic changed traffic trends from 400M visitors across 172 Stack Exchange sites. I have a problem with one of the prepositions used in that statement, ...
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0answers
43 views

The use of the preposition OF is becoming confusing

I am reading the book "Word Study and English Grammar" by Frederick William Hamilton, which says: Of is superfluous in such phrases as smell of, taste of, feel of”. I want to know exactly what ...
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0answers
40 views

made of VS made from (not duplicate, tricky one)

Here I would like to ask a question about the usage of made of and made from. I know the issue has been discussed on this forum many times before, but this time I would like to ask a tricky question ...
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3k views

“Contributions by” or “from”?

The yearbook is made with love by Lisa, with contributions by Mary and Sal. or The yearbook is made with love by Lisa, with contributions from Mary and Sal.
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0answers
1k views

Is “membership to an organisation” wrong?

I have been seeing increasing use of "membership to an organisation" (club, association etc.). The "to" makes my teeth grate, as I have always used "of". Should I continue to resist (I run a large ...
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0answers
558 views

Usage of 'of' vs 'for'

What is the difference between 'process of registration of application' and 'process of registration for application'?
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3answers
6k views

“I remember the advice he gave to me” Why add preposition to?

While I was reading a book, I stumbled upon a sentence "I remember the advice he gave to me". From my understanding, give can be used in two ways. First. Give + IO + DO. For example, "He gave me an ...
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0answers
11k views

“Cater to” vs. “cater for”

Is there any difference between "cater to" and "cater for"? Which is better in this context: The dramatist must cater to the taste of the audience. The dramatist must cater for the taste of the ...
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0answers
114 views

What does one call the noun a preposition relates to its object?

With minimal research online one can easily find that a prepositional phrase consists of a preposition and an object. Most online and paper resources will describe a preposition as a word that ...
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0answers
58 views

All I'm askin' / Is about the interesting preposition placement in the song “Respect”

The Aretha Franklin song "Respect" has the interesting lyric "All I'm askin' / Is for a little respect" [link] where in everyday English, I would expect "All I'm askin' for / Is a little respect". I'...
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0answers
535 views

use of an infinitive immediately after a relative pronoun with a preposition

I was wondering if someone could please help me confirm whether or not, after a relative pronoun preceded by a preposition, you can follow up with an infinitive immediately afterwards or if you have ...
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0answers
533 views

use of “of” or “from” when it comes to years

Which preposition is correct in this case? In the “Subdue” series of/from 2008, he photographed the daily life of urban centers. (The "Subdue" series is a series of photographs that was created in ...
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2answers
2k views

Delivery at home, at a home, in a home?

I've read an article and there's a sentence which confuses me: No matter if your delivery takes place in a home or at the hospital... If I rewrite it this way: No matter if your delivery takes ...
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0answers
446 views

Does this adverb prepositional phrase modify the adverb, or vice versa?

The McGraw Hill Handbook of English Grammar and Usage (pg. 42) gives "We got there late in the evening" as an example of an adverb prepositional phrase ('in the evening') modifying an adverb ('late'). ...
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0answers
1k views

Prepositions before participle clauses

I am currently studying participle clauses that have adverbial meaning, and was faced with something that I'm having a hard time understanding. In "Advanced Grammar In Use," the book I'm studying ...
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0answers
3k views

What is the appropriate preposition of “Radio programme”?

So, in this sentence I listened to this conversation (On - In) a radio programme. What is the appropriate preposition to use?
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0answers
613 views

Ellipsis (Gapping) and Prepositions

A simple example of ellipsis is: Peter likes to eat apples, and Mary oranges. (Peter likes to eat apples, and Mary [likes to eat] oranges.) Recently, I've been engaged in a debate about a ...
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1answer
624 views

Usage of “of” prepositions sequence

Today, I have encountered the following sentence in a documentation: Department of development and support of information systems of ABC JSC I have argued about the correctness of using this "of"...
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0answers
3k views

Arrive “by” or “on” a specific train?

I happened to read a "programme of visit" of a foreign delegation which stated that the delegation would arrive in [name of city] by train H702. Obviously, H702 is the designation of a specific train. ...
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53 views

Earn rewards for participating vs Earn rewards by participating

Is it correct to say: You can earn rewards for participating in the company's wellness program. I'm inclined to change it to You can earn rewards by participating in the company's wellness ...
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0answers
31 views

adverbials part II… I left the building with him…

Can one say a. I left the kitchen with the water running. b. I went to his house with my brother in jail. c. I went out of the bedroom with her naked. d. I left the building with my brother ...
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16k views

Is there any difference between 'to affiliate with' and 'to affiliate to'?

When I was looking up the word 'affiliate', the dictionary offered the example sentences which I've been really confused from. The actual meaning of the word 'affiliate' is to cause a group to ...
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1k views

Proper preposition in 'Are you busy coming week?'

When I make a sentence: Are you busy coming week? which preposition should I put between busy and coming week?
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12k views

In the tube or on the tube?

If I would like to ask, if someone reads the news on / in the tube? (btw Tube being the underground in London) Which one is correct? Thanks,
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92 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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435 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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100 views

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 meaning ...
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0answers
4k views

“Amazed by how” vs “amazed how”

I am amazed by how friendly these people are. I'm amazed how friendly these people are. What is the difference between the usage with by and the usage without?
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4answers
601 views

Why does “at work” make as much sense as “working” in this sentence?

I'm struggling to explain to someone why the following two sentences are both correct: "Students, though not necessarily working in the society, are also important members" "Students, though not ...
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1answer
64 views

Metaphors for Computation: Usage of “Before” and “Below”

Are "before" and "below" interchangeable? In context, the example is medical expenses before the AGI floor when the intended meaning apparently is medical expenses below the AGI floor The ...
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2answers
8k views

What's the difference between “aspects of” and “aspects to”?

I just wrote There are two strange aspects of this situation. Then I decided that There are two strange aspects to this situation. sounded better, but I don't know why. There are certainly ...
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3answers
942 views

'before' or 'in front of'?

Which sentence is the correct one? He parked his BMW directly before the diner. or He parked his BMW directly in front of the diner.
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0answers
24 views

Which preposition do you use: at/in/on + job?

I wonder what preposition should be used in the following example: What were you responsible for at/on/in you previous job? Thank you in advance!
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43 views

Origin of the “preposition+relative pronoun” construction as used to avoid sentence-terminal prepositions

The rule against using prepositions to end sentences with is bogus—that much is clear—but what about the syntactic construction commonly used to avoid violating this rule, as parodied in the phrase ...
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38 views

What is the difference between the following prepositions:

"He is the best player of the country." and "He is the best player in the country." When should we use "of" and when should we use "in"?
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1answer
43 views

At the … level/ on the … level

Would any of you be able to advise me which sentence could be correct? I am a bit confused. Administrative support at the Project Management level? Administrative support on the Project Management ...
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1answer
40 views

“in exhibition”?

The Bosarges’ $5 million mummy now is in exhibition at the Museum of Natural History in Houston. (source) I am not familiar with "in exhibition". I would always use "on exhibition". My own research ...
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0answers
20 views

Can you use “of” before a date?

I just wondered if you could use "of" instead of "on" before a date in some instances. (Sorry if the question has already been asked, I couldn't find an answer). For example: I won't attend the ...
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0answers
32 views

Do I always need “for” before time?

I would like to know if I always need "for" to mention time. Could you teach me when I should use "for" and when I shouldn't? (Background of this question: When I said "I slept for 7 hours last night"...
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0answers
18 views

'As' or 'for' benchmark in a table

I have a table which has the following entry which is in brackets: "(conventional control as benchmark)" Can I write it like this or would you rather use 'for benchmark'? Unfortunately the space is ...
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2answers
39 views

Contrast is followed by in

Could please anyone explain why contrast is followed by in, not with or to in this explanation from Cambridge Dictionary? We use actually to indicate a new topic of conversation or a change or ...
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3answers
67 views

“of” vs“in” which preposition is more suited in the below context?

which one is more suitable to use and why : 1- There is a stoppage in the development 2- There is a stoppage of the development Example sentence: He suffers from a stoppage in/of physical ...
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41 views

How current is the use of “but” to mean “except for”?

I am aware of the use of but to mean except for. My question is: how current is this usage? Is it appropriate to use it in contemporary documents that are not literature production? (for example: ...

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