• English grammar
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  • 1 English alphabet
  • 2 English pronunciation and phonetics [0/3]
  • 3 English articles [0/9]
  • 4 English pronouns [0/39]
  • 4.1 English personal pronouns [0/3]
  • 4.2 English impersonal pronouns (it, there, ...) [0/4]
  • 4.3 English object pronouns [0/3]
  • 4.4 English possessive pronouns [0/5]
  • 4.5 English reflexive pronouns [0/4]
  • 4.6 English reciprocal pronouns [0/4]
  • 4.7 English demonstrative pronouns [0/3]
  • 4.8 English relative pronouns [0/4]
  • 4.9 English indefinite pronouns [0/5]
  • 4.10 English interrogative pronouns [0/4]
  • 5 English nouns [0/16]
  • 6 English adjectives [0/38]
  • 6.1 Adjectives of quality in English [0/4]
  • 6.2 Demonstrative adjectives in English [0/4]
  • 6.3 Possessive adjectives in English [0/4]
  • 6.4 Quantity adjectives in English [0/4]
  • 6.5 Interrogative adjectives in English [0/4]
  • 6.6 Numeral adjectives in English [0/8]
  • 6.7 Comparatives and superlatives [0/10]
  • 7 English adverbs [0/18]
  • 7.1 Position of adverbs in English [0/2]
  • 7.2 Adverbs of manner in English [0/2]
  • 7.3 Adverbs of place in English [0/2]
  • 7.4 Adverbs of time in English [0/2]
  • 7.5 Adverbs of quantity in English [0/2]
  • 7.6 Adverbs of frequency in English [0/2]
  • 7.7 Adverbs of degree in English [0/2]
  • 7.8 Adverbs of probability and certainty in English [0/2]
  • 7.9 Adverbs of opinion and observation in English [0/2]
  • 8 English prepositions [0/12]
  • 9 English verbs [0/122]
  • 9.1 Present tenses in English [0/29]
  • Fill in the correct present tense in English (Score -/-)Free
  • Exercise about all present tenses in English (Score -/-)Free
  • Mixed present tenses exercise in English (Score -/-)Free
  • Practice all the English present tenses (Score -/-)Free
  • 9.1.1 Present simple tense in English [0/5]
  • 9.1.2 Present continuous tense in English [0/4]
  • 9.1.3 Present simple vs present continuous in English [0/4]
  • 9.1.4 Present perfect tense in English [0/4]
  • 9.1.5 Present perfect continuous tense in English [0/4]
  • 9.1.6 Difference past simple and present perfect in English [0/4]
  • 9.2 Past tenses in English [0/20]
  • 9.3 Future tenses in English [0/21]
  • 9.4 Auxiliary verbs in English [0/9]
  • 9.5 Present participle in English [0/3]
  • 9.6 Past participle in English [0/3]
  • 9.7 Modal verbs in English [0/11]
  • 9.8 Phrasal verbs in English [0/3]
  • 9.9 Regular verbs in English [0/3]
  • 9.10 Irregular verbs in English [0/3]
  • 9.11 Gerund (-ing form) in English [0/8]
  • 9.12 Infinitive verbs in English [0/3]
  • 9.13 Imperative in English [0/2]
  • 9.14 Reported speech in English [0/2]
  • 9.15 Active and passive voice in English [0/2]
  • 10 English conditionals [0/20]
  • In this chapter the prepositions in English will be explained. Prepositions are used to define a relationship between a noun or pronoun and other words in the sentence. 

    What is a preposition?

    A preposition is a word that defines a relationship between words in a sentence. It can describe for example the time, the position or the movement of something. 

    Prepositions in English examples:

    • I have sent a postcard to my grandmother. 
    • We were waiting for him in front of the church.
    • He came into the kitchen, when we were cooking.

    They can also accompany a verb, forming the phrasal verbs. These are combinations of a verb and a preposition. The meaning of the phrasal verb is different from the original one. 

    Examples:

    • They broke up two months ago. 
    • He doesn't agree with you on this subject. 

    Placement of prepositions 

    The prepositions can be placed in two different positions in the sentence:

    1. Before the noun in affirmative sentences.
      Example: I am walking to the supermarket. 
    2. At the end of the sentence in questions with interrogative pronouns (who, what, where, when, why)
      Example: Where are we going to?

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    Types of prepositions in English

    There are approximately 150 different prepositions in English. There are different types of prepositions, but the three main categories are shown in the following table:

    Type of prepositions Usage Example 
    Prepositions of time These prepositions indicate the time of a certain event or situation. 
    • We have met her today at 7 o'clock. 
    • The sea was very cold in January.
    Prepositions of place These prepositions indicate the position of something or someone. 
    • He left his bag on the couch. 
    • I met her at a bar in the city centre. 
    Prepositions of movement  These prepositions indicate the movement of something or someone.
    • He goes to the supermarkt every day. 
    • They walked around the lake. 

    English preposition 'about' with noun and 'about' with infinitive

    Some prepositions in English do not belong to one of the categroes as described above. Below you can find an example of one of those prepositions:

    'About' is used to talk about a specific topic. The table below shows the usage of 'about'. 

    Form Usage Example
    About + noun Used to describe what the subject of something is or what someone is talking about. 
    • My mother is talking about the weather. 
    • The movie is about aliens. 
    About + infinitive Used to say that something is going to happen soon. 
    • She is about to give a speech about climate change. 
    • The class is about to finish. 

    Prepositions 'in', 'at', or 'on' in English

    The three English prepositions 'in', 'at' and 'on' can be used in different ways, not just for a place. 

    • She is not interested in buying a car. 
    • We will meet at 3 o'clock. 
    • The house is on fire. 

    Verbs and prepositions in English

    Some English verbs are followed by prepositions, because this important for the meaning of the verb in a sentence.

    • She borrowed a jacket from her mother.
    • They participated in a contest.
    • We dream of becoming a famous band. 

    Prepositions with adjectives in English

    Some English adjectives need to be combined with a preposition, because it is essential for the meaning of the adjective. 

    • The Netherlands is famous for its windmills.
    • Julia is interested in playing volleyball.
    • My mother is married to my father. 

    Take a look at the subchapters of this chapter to learn more about the prepositions in English, including a list of common prepositions used in English. 

    Next lessons

    1 Prepositions of place in English Learn all about the prepositions of place in English.
    2 Prepositions of time in English Learn all about the different prepositions of time in English.
    3 Prepositions of movement in English Learn all about the prepositions of movement in English.
    4 Prepositions 'in' 'at' 'on' in English Study the prepositions 'in', 'at' and 'on' with this overview of the rules and a list.
    5 Verbs and prepositions in English Learn about the verbs and prepositions in English.
    6 Prepositions with adjectives in English Learn all about the adjectives and prepositions in English.
    7 List of prepositions in English Learn the English prepositions with this list of the most common prepositions with examples.