1. Preposition of time
With a definite point of time.
Example: at 5 o’clock
With parts of the day, months, seasons and years.
Example: in the afternoon
With days and dates
Example: On Monday, on the first day of June
Refers to the latest time at which an action will be over.
The examination will be over by 5 p.m.
Period of time
Example: For three years
Point of time
Example: Since last Tuesday, since 1980
Refers starting point of action
This water came from a spring. She came from USA.
2. Preposition of position
To an exact point
The tourist stays at the Tourist Hotel. He studied at Oxford.
Refers to larger areas
He lives in Bombay
It is used with more than two persons or things but the word which starts with a vowel letter.
Divide the sweets amongst us.
It is used for higher than but for non-vertical position
The sun rose above the horizon. The sky is above our head.
It is used for vertically above position. Sometimes, it is used when something crosses over something.
The plane flew over my head. The cloud is over our head. The bathroom is over the kitchen.
For lower than but for non-vertical position
When the sun sets it goes below the horizon. Your work is below the average.
For vertically below
It is shady under the trees.
Means lower position
The ground was slippery beneath her.
3. Preposition of Direction
It is used to express motion from one place to another.
We walked to the river and back.
Refers to direction
He saw me running towards him.
Refers to motion towards the inside of something i.e. entry from outside to inside.
He jumped into the well. She fell into a ditch.
It is used for the static condition. It is used when something already inside something.
A boy is in the room. A student is running in the room. Ram is in the river.
Refers to aim
He aimed at the bird.
It shows pressure
He leaned against a tree. She cleaned the edge of her knife against the plate.
Refers to separation
He was wiping sweat off his face. Kim fell off his chair in a swoon.
Means one side
She ran across the field.
Means on the farther side of.
This is beyond his power.
Means by the side of
I sat down beside my wife.
Means in addition to
He is guilty of five killings and more besides.
Besides being a teacher, he is a skilled trainer.
4. Miscellaneous preposition
In is used for smaller area while “at” is used for larger area.
I live at Lakshmi Nagar. I live in Delhi.
In case of floor, we use “on”
I live on the fifth floor.
Agree with, for person
He agrees with you.
Agree to, for thing
The boys agreed to do what I asked.
Agree upon, for a policy discussion
Quarrel with, for person
I quarrel with my sisters for sweets.
Quarrel over, for thing
Sister hangs self after a fight over TV remote.
IV. In/Inside (Boundary related), Out/Outside (Boundary related)
- She is in the room.
- She is inside the cupboard.
- She is out of the room.
- She is outside the cupboard.
When something is already on something then use “on” and when something comes on something in motion then use “upon”
The boys are on the table. The dog jumped upon the table.
Entrust with, for thing
Entrust a person with a thing.
Entrust to, for person
I entrust to you with my valuables.
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