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List of Common Prepositions – Tips for Advanced English Learners

31 Jul 2019

Prepositions make it easier for people to understand each other, because they explain relationships between words in sentences. Although there only about 150 prepositions in English language, some of them are among the most frequently used English words. This is quite impressive given that English words exceed 150.000 in total. Consider our list of common prepositions coupled with examples to find out more about roles that prepositions play in sentences.

Common Prepositions with Examples

This list contains most commonly used prepositions along with sentence examples. For your convenience, examples are presented in alphabetical order.

  • Aboard: They arrived aboard the plane after a brief moment of hesitation.
  • About: They talked about changes Trump’s presidency would bring.
  • Above: My test results are above average.
  • According to: According to reports, real estate prices in NYC are going up again.
  • Across: He noticed some movement in a house across the street.
  • After: We continued our discussion after lunch.
  • Against: She not only spoke against our decision to move to LA, but also created a 5-page pdf listing her major arguments against relocation.
  • Ahead of: Students entered the classroom ahead of their teacher.
  • Along: They continued this conversation as they walked along the street.
  • Along with: Would you like a piece of cake along with tea?
  • Amid: They could not hear each other amid the noise.
  • Among: Two people among us fluently spoke Italian.
  • Anti: Why are you anti my idea?
  • Apart from: I’ve hired everyone who applied, apart from those two applicants.
  • Around: They walked around that pond and talked.
  • As: I am not as tall as you are.
  • As for: As for me, I’ve applied for a job.
  • Aside from: Aside from being convenient, this chair is also nice.
  • As per: We included several examples to illustrate information as per the rules.
  • As to: As to your decision, I think it is correct.
  • As well as: Read as well as write for memorizing this information better.
  • At: She is still at school.
  • Away from: Our dog ran away from the car and we could not find it for a long time.
  • Because of: He cannot take this position because of lack of education.
  • Before: We’ve never met each other before yesterday.
  • Behind: You should stand behind me, as I am the last in a row.
  • Below: No one lives in a flat below us.
  • Beneath: Continuing this conversation was beneath his dignity.
  • Beside: There is a small pond beside our house.
  • Besides: Would you like anything else besides coffee?
  • Between: They will meet tomorrow between 5pm and 6pm.
  • Beyond: Her exam preparation continued beyond midnight.
  • But: Everyone passed English test but Evan.
  • But for: It’s Ben’s fault. But for him, we would return earlier.
  • By: They travelled by car.
  • By means of: They resolved their dispute by means of sharing a car.
  • Close to: We stayed in a hotel close to your house.
  • Concerning: Students discussed some questions concerning their homework.
  • Considering: Considering the weather, Mark and Nora decided to stay in their hotel room.
  • Contrary to: Contrary to professor’s expectations, all students passed their tests that day.
  • Depending on: We’ll decide regarding going out tomorrow, depending on the weather.
  • Despite: He’s got an A despite completing an assignment in the last minute.
  • Down: You should go down the street.
  • Due to: Baseball game was cancelled due to the rain.
  • During: They visited Empire State Building during their stay in New York.
  • Except: You can find any color on this picture except yellow.
  • Except for: Everyone was present, except for Nora.
  • Excepting: Excepting Emma and Evan, everyone arrived.
  • Excluding: This table costs $50, excluding some extra charges for delivery.
  • Following: We enjoyed our coffee following breakfast.
  • For: We haven’t seen each other for two years.
  • Forward of: Please, don’t sit forward of me, because I won’t see the blackboard.
  • From: They returned from LA yesterday.
  • Given: You should start writing now, given task complexity.
  • In: They returned in the morning.
  • In addition to: He watched a movie in addition to reading a book.
  • In between: I am still in between two decisions.
  • In case of: Please, call me in case of necessity.
  • In face of: She could not leave in face of danger.
  • In favor of: He talked in favor of her idea.
  • In front of: She stopped in front of me.
  • Inside: It was dark inside the classroom.
  • In spite of: They returned home in spite of their friends.
  • Instead of: He brought coffee instead of tea.
  • Into: Let’s cut pizza into 8 pieces.
  • In view of: In view of his illness, he decided not to continue the journey.
  • Like: I enjoyed this concert because she sang like a bird.
  • Minus: Nine minus six equals three.
  • Near: They plant a new tree near the window.
  • Notwithstanding: Notwithstanding the high price, they decided to buy that house.
  • Near to: There is a good restaurant next to our house.
  • Next to: You can walk next to me.
  • Of: He took his cup of tea and went outside.
  • Off: Most students kept off the grass.
  • On: John returns on Monday.
  • On account of: He never worried on account of others because he was too busy with his own tasks.
  • On behalf of: He talked on behalf of all his neighbors.
  • On board: There were no doctors on board that plane.
  • Onto: My cat jumped onto the table.
  • On top of: They stayed on top of the hill during sunrise.
  • Opposite: They decided to meet opposite the library.
  • Opposite to: She stopped her car opposite to the house.
  • Other than: I like every kind of coffee other than espresso.
  • Out of: They went out of the building.
  • Outside: Don’t go outside the room.
  • Outside of: She stopped outside of the classroom to repeat her speech.
  • Over: A population of sperm whales has declined sharply over the last several decades.
  • Owing to: They had to stay home owing to the cold weather.
  • Past: He returned home past midnight.
  • Per: They charged $10 per hour.
  • Plus: Two plus two equals four.
  • Prior to: She proofread an essay prior to bringing it to class.
  • Regarding: Professor made some clarifications regarding their homework.
  • Regardless of: They went for a vacation regardless of its price.
  • Round: Our house is round the corner.
  • Save: All save my brother have already arrived.
  • Since: We haven’t seen him since Friday.
  • Than: Harvard is better than Oxford.
  • Thanks to: Thanks to effective preparation, he successfully passed his exams.
  • Through: They have been through a difficult experience.
  • To: University library is open from Monday to Friday.
  • Together with: They ordered chicken together with vegetables.
  • Toward: His attitude toward a topic changed after their long discussion.
  • Under: I enjoyed the subject under discussion.
  • Underneath: His dog stayed underneath the table while they were having a dinner.
  • Unlike: Unlike other members of his family, John voted for Trump.
  • Until: She read Walker’s new novel until dawn.
  • Up: They ran up the hill.
  • Up against: They were up against a powerful enemy.
  • Upon: She continued reading Baldwin’s short story upon returning home.
  • Up to: The American Civil War continued up to 1865.
  • Up until: They worked up until the morning.
  • Versus: By its decision in the case Brown versus Board of Education, the US Supreme Court made racial segregation in public schools unconstitutional.
  • Via: I’ll contact you via Skype in a short while.
  • With: Some time ago, I lived with my parents.
  • Within: We’ll finish this project within 15 minutes.
  • Without: Students watched new movie without speaking.
  • With reference to: He wrote his latest post with reference to common questions.
  • With regard to: Professor wanted to talk to her with regard to her latest article.

Q&A

What are common prepositions?

In English language, there are more than 150 prepositions. Most of them are single-word prepositions, but some contain two or more words. Common prepositions include the following: on, at, about, by, for, with, from, of, through, off, to, without, until, before, after. Although prepositions clarify relationships between nouns, pronouns, or other speech parts, their meanings may change depending on exact context or situation.

What are examples of prepositions?

Here are some examples of prepositions and their usage in sentences:

  • With: Emma will go with us.
  • From: I received a letter from my boyfriend.
  • To: I will go to prom tomorrow.
  • At: Do you have friends at school?
  • Until: He will not return home until Friday.

What are the 50 prepositions?

Here are common preposition words: about, above, across, after, along, against, at, among, around, before, behind, beneath, below, beside, besides, between, but, by, beyond, down, during, except, for, from, in, off, into, like, near, out, of, inside, on, outside, since, through, over, to, under, towards, until, up, with, without, within.

How do you use prepositions correctly?

As prepositions explain relationships between things, they should have an object. This usually suggests that prepositions should be followed by nouns or pronouns. It is grammatically incorrect to end sentences with prepositions.

Incorrect: Emma is who I’ve just talked with.

Correct: I’ve just talked with Emma.