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What prepositions should I use to fill in these two blanks?

My friend had left school _____ the age of 14 and gone to work _____ a retro.

options:

a) under/in
b) at/in
c) under/around
d) on/in
e) about/in

My approach:

I am confused between a) and b)

I think both can be true.

Can anyone guide me how to approach the problem?

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  • 2
    Unless really informal context, "and gone to work" should be "and went to work".
    – user3169
    Commented Oct 10, 2015 at 6:02
  • 1
    I don't know what "a restro" or "a retro" is in this context; those aren't standard English. Is it supposed to be short for a restaurant?
    – stangdon
    Commented Nov 9, 2015 at 12:41
  • @stangdon I've never heard it either, but googling "restro" produces a page of results for establishments in India so I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that it's in fairly common use there? Can any of our Indian contributors confirm? Commented Dec 9, 2015 at 11:58

2 Answers 2

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I think b) is correct here.

"My friend had left school under the age of 14" sounds strange.

"Before the age of 14" would work better.

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  • 1
    I agree. Since "left school" is a specific action in the past that you are aware of, it is unlikely you would not want to be specific about the age.
    – user3169
    Commented Oct 10, 2015 at 6:06
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B) is the obvious winner as far as I can tell. Age can take only one preposition—at.

With that said, the natural choice should be B).

My friend had left school at the age of 14 and gone to work in a restro (restaurant).

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  • There are similar contexts where age can take a different preposition. For example, "Mr. Scrooge was accused of violating child labor laws. He allegedly hired children under the age of 14 to work as forklift operators."
    – Jasper
    Commented Dec 24, 2015 at 20:31

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