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out 1 /aʊt/ ●●● S1 W1 adverb 1 FROM INSIDE from inside an object, container, building, or place OPP in

She opened her suitcase and took out a pair of shoes.

Lock the door on your way out.

Charlotte went to the window and looked out.

Out you go (=used to order someone to leave a room)!

out of

The keys must have fallen out of my pocket.

Get out of here!

Someone had torn several pages out of her diary.

I don’t think I’d have the courage to jump out of a plane.

All the roads out of the city were snowbound.

out came/jumped etc

The egg cracked open and out came a baby chick.


According to my research,

"I jumped out of the plane", "out" in this case is an adverb, and adverb can stand alone so we can say "I jumped out" and "of the plane" is implied.

But some people say "out of" in the above sentence are double prepositions (source). I don't get it.

"from" is always a preposition, not an adverb because it can never stand alone. So, in the sentence "The noise came from under the sink", we see 2 prepositions "from" & "under". If we omit "from", the sentence "The noise came under the sink" sounds strange.

The third example, instead of saying "The slippers are for being worn in the house, not outside", if we say "The slippers are for the house" then it is a bit strange, some suggest "The slippers are for in the house", which I think it is just a kind of sentence contraction not 2 prepositions before a noun. Am I right?

Could anyone explain this for me, this is so confusing?

Are they adverbs or prepositions?

  • "I jumped out of the plane" why do you say 'out' is an adverb here? – Wistful Apr 10 at 5:20
  • @DecapitatedSoul, the dictionary says, I don't – Tom Apr 10 at 6:05
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"Out of" is a preposition.
American Heritage Dictionary "out of"
prep. 1.a. From within to the outside of: got out of the car.

While "out" can be an adverb, "out of" is a "double preposition" (as you noted above):
Quora "double preposition"
While there may be another way to analyze it, if it appears as a headword in a dictionary as a compound word, that's a good way to look at it.

In the example with "from under the sink", one prepositional phrase is part of another.
See: Wikipedia "preposition and postposition"
Come out from under the bed
"...the complement of the preposition from is in fact another prepositional phrase. The resulting sequence of two prepositions (from under) may be regarded as a complex preposition..."

(Note that the Wikipedia article points out that this usage can be seen as a nested prepositional phrase or as a complex preposition.)

As to your last example, "the slippers are for in the house", I think that is the same kind of structure as "from under the sink".

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