I ran across what did not appear to be at first but what became an interesting question posted here which asked for clarification about using the prepositional phrases during and through, and when one would be more appropriate than the other. At first I thought this question might be too easy for this website and it would be a simple matter to Google a resource with a ready example. Surprisingly, though, I didn't find any such site. As you'll note in the comments, @aparente001 also searched for an appropriate website with little success. So we agreed this question was worth elevating to the community.

Is there an excellent online resource for defining, comparing and contrasting prepositional phrases, using the criteria that it must, at a minimum, define both during and through and give examples comparing and contrasting them to show when one is more appropriate than the other? (The idea is that if it includes these then it will [hopefully] also include other hard to find prepositional phrase comparisons and thus be a great resource for English language learners.)

  • The short answer is no. They are millions of prepositional phrase possibilities in English. How about you post some actual phrases with during and through and ask specific questions about them. Also, you have to be aware that prepositions inevitably bring up the issue of phrasal verbs. Through can be part of one. – Lambie May 30 '17 at 15:53
  • Here's a relevant usage distinction for you: I fell asleep during the film, I slept during the film and I slept through the film are all perfectly natural (though they mean different things). But I fell asleep through the film isn't a valid construction. – FumbleFingers Reinstate Monica May 30 '17 at 15:54
  • Yes, but how about: I fell through the floor in the old house. – Lambie May 30 '17 at 15:55
  • @Lambie: I think during is [nearly?] always a "time-based" preposition, whereas by default through is usually a "spatial" reference. I assume OP is only considering contexts where through[out] "metaphorically references movement / position in time rather than space. – FumbleFingers Reinstate Monica May 30 '17 at 16:03
  • 1
    @FumbleFingers He worked through his problems. It gets tricky. – Lambie May 30 '17 at 16:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.