As a Spanish speaker English prepositions are most of the time a nightmare; this is due to the fact that they do not have an accurate translation and also they have different aplications and meaning.

What preposition is correct in the following sentence?

People were shocked [ with | by | for ] his death.

  • 1
    "People were shocked by his death" is most idiomatic. Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 20:46
  • @claudio sepulveda All prepositions in English prepositional phrases or phrasal verbs can be translated perfectly well into Spanish. People were shocked by his death. La gente se sorprendió con su muerte. Vaya, hombre. :)
    – Lambie
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 20:56
  • Dear Lambie, Thank you for your comment, and based on this comment I´s kike to aske this: Can you give only one translation for prepositions such as: BY - examples: "People were shocked BY his death" - I go to work BY car - I left my bag BY the window. Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 21:02
  • 1
    No, but the reverse is true also. Just because not every preposition in English is the same one in Spanish does not mean every preposition in English cannot be accurately translated into Spanish. In Spanish, there is the preposition EN everywhere and it is not always IN in English either. It works both ways. EN este aspecto, el libro es interesante. Le vi EN la playa. EN lo que se refiere a este tema, no estoy de acuerdo. THAT aspect of the book is interesting, I saw him AT the beach. WITH regard to this subject, I don't agree. :) Welcome to the particular genius of a language. :)
    – Lambie
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 21:17
  • Lambie I forgot: Do you have only one translation into Spanish for the preposition FOR. examples: I was angry with my wife FOR buying a new car. - I am leaving FOR England next week. Thanks Lambie. Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 21:20

1 Answer 1


In this case, "by" is the correct preposition - "People were shocked by his death." I agree, English can be a little confusing.

  • 1
    Welcome to ELL.SE. On this site, we strive to explain answers, not merely state them. Why is by the correct preposition here? How is the meaning changed when the other prepositions are used? What are some real-life examples of usage? I strongly encourage you to take the site tour and review the help center for additional guidance.
    – choster
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 22:22
  • @TapaDiptiSitaula feel free to edit your answer. If you improve it, we can upvote it.
    – Andrew
    Commented Jan 6, 2017 at 0:07

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .