Whenever I have to place multiple prepositional phrases in a sentence I become confused. For ex

In the early 50s, at XYZ place, as a kid, I saw ABC.


As a kid, in the early 50s, at XYZ place, I saw ABC.

Or something else.

Please advice. Thanks.

  • Though it's not necessary, you can always choose to rephrase your ideas. For example, this is one possible alternative: Back in the early 50s, when I was still a kid living in/at XYZ, I saw/used to see ABC every day. Sep 24, 2015 at 12:07

1 Answer 1


Actually I think both of these are fine and there isn't a rule about the order they should come in. However, it sounds more natural and (subjectively) nicer if you group the phrases which are relevant to each other. For example, "as a kid" and "in the early 50s" both refer to the timing, and it makes sense to group them together, and not split them up with "at XYZ place" (which is giving spatial rather than temporal information).

So any order is fine, but I would suggest

As a kid in the early 50s, at XYZ place, I saw ABC.

  • 1
    I'd even take it a step further (also subjectively) and remove as many extra pauses (commas) as possible: "As a kid in the early 50s, I saw ABC at XYZ place." I agree with keeping the similarly relevant portions of the phrase together.
    – WendiKidd
    Sep 25, 2015 at 6:15

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