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Published by Uma Kalyani
Prepositions basics
Prepositions basics

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Published by: Uma Kalyani on Oct 19, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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A preposition is a word that explains the time, space or logical relationship between the other parts of thesentence. In other words, it links all the other words together, so the reader can understand how the pieces of thesentence fit.
English Usage Example
on days of the weekon Monday
in months / seasonstime of dayyear after a certain period of time
 in August / in winter in the morningin 2006in an hour 
 a certain point of time
 at nightat the weekendat half past nine
since from a certain point of time (past till now)since 1980
for over a certain period of time (past till now)for 2 years
ago a certain time in the past2 years ago
before earlier than a certain point of timebefore 2004
to telling the timeten to six (5:50)
past telling the timeten past six (6:10)
to / till /untilmarking the beginning and end of a periodof timefrom Monday to/till Friday
till / untilin the sense of 
how long something is going to last 
 He is on holiday until Friday.
byin the sense of 
at the latest 
 up to a certain time
I will be back by 6 o’clock.
 By 11 o'clock, I had read fivepages.
Place (Position and Direction)
English Usage Example
in room, building, street, town, countrybook, paper etc.car, taxipicture, worldin the kitchen, in Londonin the bookin the car, in a taxiin the picture, in the world
next to, by an object 
 for eventsplace where you are to do something typical(watch a film, study, work)at the door, at the stationat the tableat a concert, at the partyat the cinema, at school, atwork
on attachedfor a place with a river being on a surfacefor a certain side (left, right)for a floor in a housefor public transportfor 
television, radio 
 the picture on the wallLondon lies on the Thames.on the tableon the lefton the first floor on the bus, on a planeon TV, on the radio
by, next to,besideleft or right of somebody or somethingJane is standing by / nextto / beside the car.
under on the ground, lower than (or covered by)something elsethe bag is under the table
below lower than something else but above groundthe fish are below thesurface
over covered by something elsemeaning
more than 
 getting to the other side (also
)overcoming an obstacleput a jacket over your shirtover 16 years of agewalk over the bridgeclimb over the wall
above higher than something else, but not directlyover ita path above the lake
acrossgetting to the other side (also
)getting to the other sidewalk across the bridgeswim across the lake
through something with limits on top, bottom and thedrive through the tunnel
English Usage Example
to movement to person or buildingmovement to a place or countryfor 
 go to the cinemago to London / Irelandgo to bed
into enter a room / a buildinggo into the kitchen / thehouse
towards movement in the direction of something (butnot directly to it)go 5 steps towards thehouse
onto movement to the top of something jump onto the table
fromin the sense of 
where from 
 a flower from the garden
Other important Prepositions
English Usage Example
from who gave ita present from Jane
of who/what does it belong towhat does it showa page of the bookthe picture of a palace
by who made ita book by Mark Twain
on walking or riding on horsebackentering a public transport vehicleon foot, on horsebackget on the bus
in entering a car / Taxiget in the car 
off leaving a public transport vehicleget off the trainout of leaving a car / Taxiget out of the taxi
by rise or fall of somethingtravelling (other than walking or horseriding)prices have risen by 10 percentby car, by bus
 she learned Russian at 45aboutfor topics, meaning
what about 
 we were talking about you

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