Questions tagged [prepositions]

A preposition is a word governing, and usually preceding, a noun or pronoun and expressing a relation to another word or element in the clause.

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142
votes
8answers
29k views

Why “grand theft auto”, not “grand auto theft”?

There is a video game series called "Grand Theft Auto". According to its Wikipedia page: The name of the series references the term used in the US for motor vehicle theft. [...] Motor ...
76
votes
11answers
173k views

Should I say “She is in the park” or “She is at the park”?

I am really confused. Which preposition is correct? She is in/at the park. They are in/at the park. I am in/at the park. Should I use in or at in these sentences?
68
votes
6answers
7k views

(In, On or At) GitHub?

What's the difference between say: "The project will be on GitHub", "The project will be in GitHub" and "The project will be at GitHub"?
52
votes
7answers
10k views

“In” and “on”: How can I decide which one to use for vehicles?

Examples: In a car, van, etc. On a bus, boat, motorcycle, etc. How can one decide which preposition to use? Is memorization the only way or is there a better way? Note: People generally explain ...
46
votes
8answers
11k views

“To death” vs “to the death”

Sometimes I see the former, as in "starve to death". But sometimes I see the latter as well, as in "fight to the death", or in the following quote: I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend ...
36
votes
4answers
4k views

Why is wine made 'from' grapes, but tables are made 'of' wood?

(1) Wine is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented grapes or other fruits. (Wikipedia) (2) Tables were made of marble or wood and metal (typically bronze or silver alloys), sometimes with ...
30
votes
6answers
25k views

You can contact me on/over/by Skype

Which preposition(s) is / are correct in the following example? We contacted the college authority over / on / by Skype.
30
votes
3answers
223k views

“Important to me” or “Important for me”

I cannot easily figure out which one is more appropriate to use: It's important to me. It's important for me. Are they the same? If not, what's the difference?
27
votes
2answers
1k views

Dates and times: “on”, “in”, “at”?

I’m often confused when I speak about times and dates. What is the rule for using on, in, and at in the following sentences? I will do it ___ Tuesday. We married ___ March. He returned ___ the same ...
25
votes
4answers
7k views

'Back in 2000' vs 'In 2000'

I'm familiar with preposition 'in' in terms of using past tense. E.g. to denote that something is hapenning during the year 2000, I can say: I joined the project in 2000 But in some authentic ...
24
votes
6answers
16k views

Difference between 'One to One' and 'One on One'

I have been confused about the difference between "one to one" and "one on one". Which one is more appropriate of the following? We will have one to one meeting? We will have one on one ...
24
votes
6answers
111k views

Difference between “in time” and “on time”

I have an appointment at 8 and I arrive there at 7:55, is it "on time" or "in time"? What about "the nick of time"?
24
votes
2answers
261k views

Working in / for / at?

Which is the correct way to tell where I'm working? I'm working in XYZ company. I'm working for XYZ company. I'm working at XYZ company. Or is there any difference in the meaning?
22
votes
10answers
26k views

If “I woke up at 10” is okay, what about “I slept at 10”?

When did you wake up? I woke up at 10. But then if I say, “When did you sleep?” I slept at 10. – seems difficult to digest! That's because sleep is a process that includes duration. I ...
21
votes
4answers
7k views

Using “at a jail” vs. “in a jail”

We often use "at" for the mentioning of a precise location like; He is present at school. But why not say he is imprisoned at a jail instead use he is in a jail.
21
votes
5answers
2k views

Is ending a sentence with a preposition acceptable?

When I learned English at school, I was taught that I should not end a sentence with a preposition. Is it correct to end a sentence with a preposition? To avoid starting a sentence with a ...
20
votes
4answers
5k views

“You must wear a suit TO an interview” vs “You must wear a suit FOR an interview”

In the sentence- You must wear a suit to an interview shouldn't the to be replaced by for? Or what's the difference between these two here?
20
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it “words in a song,” “words to a song,” or “words of a song”?

In "I know the words in/of/to that song," do all three prepositions work equally fine? Which is the most common?
19
votes
4answers
273k views

Do we say - “in the meeting” or “at the meeting”

I am always confused with the preposition. Can somebody point me to the material where prepositional phrase is explained? Here is the problem I am facing currently. This was discussed (stated/...
19
votes
5answers
6k views

'I wish to speak WITH a British accent' or 'I wish to speak IN a British accent' - is there a difference?

I wish to speak with a British accent? What is the impact of using in instead of with in the above sentence?
19
votes
4answers
23k views

'learning the ropes' should be followed by which prepositions?

I am trying to use the idiom "learn the ropes" in a sentence as below: I am learning the ropes of my new job. Somehow, this doesn't "feel" right, and I think it should be: I am learning the ...
18
votes
6answers
4k views

Russia 'Fired Rockets INTO Ukraine' - BBC

A headline from a BBC News app on my mobile reads: Russia 'fired rockets into Ukraine' I could not find this on the BBC website, but it shows on my cellphone. Why into? You fire at someone/...
18
votes
4answers
236k views

What preposition is correct 'sleep on the bed' or 'sleep in the bed'

Are both expressions correct? If yes, do they have different meanings? It seems to me that I came across both of them in books, but I'm not sure.
18
votes
3answers
6k views

Flee from vs flee

Look at the following sentences. Many people fled the city to escape the fighting. Refugees fled from the city. They fled the country in 1987. The family fled from Nazi Germany to Britain ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

Why is “of” dropped in 'as X (of) a something'?

Can anyone explain why preposition "of" is deleted in the second sentence? Please provide relevant examples to understand. If there is a certain rule, then what is the name of that rule? ...
17
votes
2answers
3k views

Is the word “like” a preposition or verb in “You made me like this.”

Is the word "like" a preposition or verb in the sentence "You made me like this." Any suggestions appreciated. Thank you!
17
votes
2answers
4k views

Why is it necessary to add the “of” in “approved of ”?

They surely wouldn't have approved my decision. This sounds like perfect English to me. But after searching on Google, I realized I was wrong, that I had to write instead: They surely wouldn't ...
16
votes
5answers
14k views

Is it grammatical to say “according to the law” instead of “according the law”?

Is it grammatical to say "according to the law" instead of "according the law"? If so, is there any difference in meaning?
16
votes
4answers
138k views

Allow (to) + infinitive, substantive, verb+ -ing

In which way can the verb allow be used? There is always some confusion and apparently it's often intuitively used wrongly. Which form corresponds to correct English, eventually depending on context (...
16
votes
2answers
41k views

What is the difference between “don't” & “won't” in the given sentences?

Are these sentences different or same? They don't let you smoke in here. They won't let you smoke in here. Also, is it necessary to use in in the sentences? Would the meaning of sentences ...
15
votes
9answers
27k views

Do “once a year” and “once in a year” mean the same thing?

I've seen people using the phrase once a year but I wonder isn't it should be once in a year. Are they both the same and acceptable?
15
votes
6answers
6k views

“Last night at 9 PM, I ate dinner” — Does this sentence mean that it began at 9 or finished at 9?

This sentence "Last night at 9 PM, I ate dinner" means that the action began at 9 or finished at 9? Does it mean that I started eating at 9?
15
votes
3answers
3k views

What does “to” mean in “A Complete Guide to…”?

I find it hard to understand what "to" means in this case: "A Complete Guide to the Google Search Console" I wonder if it means "about" or "towards". If so, why don't we use "of" to reflect the ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

Double 'in' in one sentence

Is the sentence below correct? I want to use the phrasal verb to stay in and the adverbs in the evening. I know how to write the sentence in different forms but I ask you if the form below is correct. ...
14
votes
7answers
5k views

The meaning of “right” in “right by my desk”

Let's say you were asked where is the book that you borrowed from someone. Then you say: ''It is right by my desk'' What does the right mean in the answer? Does it mean that it is on the desk or ...
14
votes
5answers
3k views

Is “spaced by 1 meter” correct English?

Suppose that the distance between A and B is 1m, is it correct and natural to say A and B are spaced by 1 meter
14
votes
4answers
10k views

Put your hands “in” or “into” your pockets?

Which of the following sentences is correct, and why? "Put your hands in your pockets." "Put your hands into your pockets."
14
votes
4answers
26k views

I look forward to hearing from you or looking forward to hear from you?

Should I say I look forward to hearing from you or looking forward to hear from you? I have doubt because I know that the form of a verb is "to+ infinity" without the addition of the -ing ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

In programming contexts, “a call for a function” or “a call of”?

In programming context, you can call a function. This usage is listed on the dictionary ("cause the execution of (a subroutine)" by Oxford), and although I wasn't able to confirm with the dictionaries ...
14
votes
3answers
44k views

What is the difference between “look at” and “look to”?

I've heard/read/seen both "look at" and "look to" (and "look up at" and "look up to"). Is there a difference between the two? When should I use one over the other?
14
votes
3answers
26k views

“Think of” versus “think about”

Could someone help me to understand when I should use think of and when think about in sentences? What is the difference between using one or the other?
14
votes
5answers
137k views

at vs in (the hospital) - What is different?

I saw your mom in the hospital. I saw your mom at the hospital. What is different in these two sentences? Do two prepositions make significant difference?
14
votes
4answers
4k views

I left them (at) home

Consider this question: Where are they (things or people)? Would the following answer be with (at), without it or either one? I left them (at) home I have done a quick Google search and found ...
13
votes
3answers
3k views

Hit By or With a plastic Bottle

Andrew was performing on the stage when suddenly an angry fan hit him with a stone for not playing his favorite track. vs Andrew was performing on the stage when suddenly an angry fan hit him ...
13
votes
4answers
11k views

Difference between “having time to myself” and “having time for myself”

I do not have much time to myself. I do not have much time for myself. Do these sentences have different meanings because of the prepositions TO and FOR? If there is, then what? Thank you for ...
13
votes
7answers
33k views

Difference between “across” and “through”

walk across the tunnel walk through the tunnel Which one is correct? Can anyone explain me the exact difference between the through and across? I am really confused with these 2 prepositions.
13
votes
2answers
19k views

Which one(s) of “up”, “above”, “over”, “on” and “upon” is (or are) correct for this sentence?

Could you please put the pen over the book? Could you please put the pen on the book? Could you please put the pen upon the book? Could you please put the pen above the book? Could you please put the ...
13
votes
5answers
9k views

“than I” vs. “than me” [duplicate]

Between you and me Suhani is intelligent. Neither he nor his brother can walk faster than me. Whom did you mean to hurt by your unkind remarks except Sita and me? In these sentence book uses me (...
13
votes
4answers
20k views

Why do we find “Succumbed to death” instead of 'succumbed to injuries/diseases'?

Elderly woman succumbed to injuries... is common to describe that the woman died because of the injuries. Cambridge Dictionary's style is to highlight (boldface) the proper prepositions that a ...
13
votes
7answers
92k views

In the morning VS on the morning

Which one is correct? (Maybe both are correct.) He passed away on the morning of March 5. Or He passed away in the morning of March 5.