Preposition is a word placed before a noun or pronoun or gerund and denotes the relation, the person or thing, referred by it has with some thing else.


Important Rules of Proposition


1. A preposition can not be followed by a verb. If a preposition is followed by a verb then it must be in ‘ing’ form.

e.g., (i) They are afraid of loosing this match.

(ii) He insist me for doing this.


2. When object of the preposition is relative pronoun ‘that’, the preposition takes end position.

Eg., This is the dish that she is fond of.


3. When object of the preposition is infinitive (to +_verb) then preposition is placed after infinitive.

e.g., I need a gel pen to write with here ‘with’ isused as preposition and ‘to write’ is a part of  infinitive.


4. When object of the preposition is an interrogative pronoun (who, what, whom, where, which etc.) the preposition takes and or front position.


(i) What are you staring at?

(ii) By which train did you arrive here?


5. Some preposition are attached with the verb. These verbs take appropriate preposition with them e.g., laugh at, accompany with, agree with


Use of some Important Prepositions

 1. ‘At’ and ‘in’

(a) At is used for a small area (town, village) while in is used for big area (city, country etc).

e.g., (i) He lives at the bus stop.

(ii) He live in Delhi.


(b) At is used for a precise time while in is used for months, years, centuries i.e., for long periods.

e.g., They take their breakfast at 8 o’clock in the morning.


(c) At is used for stationary position while in shows movement.


e.g., (i) She is at home. (ii) The train is in motion.


2. On, Onto and Upon

(a) On can be used for both existing position and movement and it shows contact between two surfaces or things while upon is used for the objects which show movement.

e.g., (i) He was sitting on his bag.

(ii) The cat jumped upon the table.


(b) Onto to used when there is movement involving a change of level.

e.g., He lifted her onto the table.


3. In, Into and Within

 (a) In is used when any task occur at the end of a definite time period while within mean before time.

e.g., (1) They will comeback in an hour.

 (ii) I will return home within an hour.


(b) Into is used for movement. e.g., We stopped into the room.


4. With and By


With is used for instruments and by is used for agents.


e.g., He was killed by a policeman with a pistol.


5. Of and Off


Of is used in location, possession, measurement etc. while off is used in some situations such as  away from or at some distance from.


(i) The thief was present at the middle of the road (location).

(ii) Please give me a cup of tea (measurement).

(iii) Please keep off the grass.


6. Since, For and From


(a) Since is used for point of time with present perfect or past perfect tense as since 8 o’clock or since last Monday or since morning or since January etc.


(b) For is also used with present perfect tense or past perfect tense which extends up to the time of speaking as for two days for a year or for six month etc.


(c) From is used for place or used with to, till or until.



(i) He has been studying since morning.

(ii) It has been raining for five hours.

(iii)I am from Delhi.

(iv) Most school timings are from 8 am. to 2 p.m.


Ago and Before


Ago is used for post events while before is used in reference to two events.



(i) I came from Delhi two days ago.

(ii) The exam had started before I reached the examination centre.


Beside and Besides


Beside means at the side while besides means in addition to or as well as.



(i) Sit beside your friend.

(ii) Rohan has a car besides a bike.


Above and Over


Above and over both mean ‘higher than’. Over can also be used with meals food or drink or in

higher, in rank.


Over also mean covering or on the other Side Of while above means earlier or previous.

e.g., (i) The helicopter hovered above/over us.

(ii) We had a tea over a glass of cold drink.

(iii)Doctor put the cloth over the dead body.

(iv) Shashank lives at the above address.


10. Between and Among

Between is normally use for two things or person But it can also be used for more than two when we have a definite number in mind while among is usually used for more than two person or things when we have no definite number in mind.

e.g., (i) He inserted a needle between the close petals of a flower.

(ii) He distributed his property among the poor.


11. Below, under and beneath

Below and under both mean lower than. But under usually denotes physical contact and below denotes space between the things. Below is also used for meaning opposite to above while under means junior in rank. Beneath means something under the other thing.

e.g., (i) They live below us.

(ii) Books are placed under the pillow.

(iii) Radha works under me.

(iv) I found pleasure in sitting beneath the trees.


12. But and Except

Both but and except have the same meaning. But is normally used after nobody, none, nothing and nowhere etc. While except is used when the prepositional phrase comes later in a sentence.

e.g., (i) Nobody but Rekha knew the truth.

(ii) Nobody knew the truth except Rekha.


13. To : To is used for telling direction, designation, comparison etc. It is also used as a part of infinitive and with indirect object.

e.g., (i) I am going to Mumbai.

(ii) I prefer tea to coffee.

(iii) Please give it to me.


14. During and for

During is used with know periods of time while for is used to denote some purpose.

e.g., (i) We played outdoor games during our childhood.

(ii)I rented my house for holidays only.


15. Towards

Towards means movement in a particular direction.


e.g., As the teacher entered the class, all students moved towards him.


16. Across and Along

Across is used to express position in relation to something which stretches from one side of a place to another while along is used to show a specific position in relation to a line.



(i) There is a bank across the river.

(ii) I followed my friend along the corridor. Some important facts regarding preposition


Some of the facts regarding preposition


1. If main verb is used after preposition such as about, after, at, before, for, from, in, onto etc. then it is used in present participle form (i.e., in, ing, for)

e.g., I was fined for going late in the school.


2. Normally objective case comes after prepositions. e.g., Rohan does not talk to him.


3. No preposition is used after transverse verb such as discuss, describe, reach, order, tell, demand, attack, resemble, afford, pick, benefit, inform, assist etc.

e.g., children demand a lot from their parents.


4. To is used as preposition after say, suggest, listen, complain, reply, talk, speak etc. if any person is used as an object.

e.g., We should listen to our parents carefully.


5. Generally no any preposition is used before ‘home’ but ‘to’ is used as preposition if possessive case is present before home.

e.g., She has gone to her friend’s home.


6. Verbs denoting command, request, invitation and advice e.g., beg, order, recommend, tell, urge, warn, implore, encourage can be followed directly by the person addressed without the use of preposition to e.g.,


(i) He asked some help from me.


(ii) I reminded then that there was no trains after 7 p.m.


7. (a) When two phrases or words are used in parallel and require the same preposition to be idiomatically correct, the preposition does not have to be used twice.

e.g., We can go for a picnic both in summer and winter (No need to Write in before winter)


(b) But when the idiomatic use of phrases calls for different prepositions, we should write both of them.

e.g., He is neither ashamed of nor sorry for his misdeeds.