Six Rules of prepositions with Examples

A preposition is a word that connects a noun, or a pronoun, to an adjective. For example, the word ‘under’ is a preposition. Here is a sentence example:

  • The cat is hiding under the table

A preposition is one of the most important word class. You must make sure that your prepositions are perfect, in order to improve your overall proficiency in English. There are 150 prepositions in English, and to use them perfectly, you must understand the rules. So, here are six rules of prepositions with their examples:

1. A Preposition is Never Followed by a Verb

It is also the golden rule of prepositions. A preposition is generally followed by a noun, and never by a verb. 

  • I am going out with my mother (mother-noun)
  • I will keep my books in the bag (bag-noun)

2. A Preposition should have an Object

Every preposition has an object, and it becomes an adverb if it doesn’t have an object. 

  • He is in the room
  • I will meet you after work

3. There is a difference between the preposition ‘to’ and the infinitive ‘to’

It is tricky, but the preposition to (to Delhi, to her) and the infinitive to (to dance, to play), are not the same. 

Preposition to

  • I am looking forward to working with you
  • I gave the book to her

Infinitive to

  • I love to play cricket
  • She loves to sing

4. Forms of prepositions

There are single word prepositions, and there are complex prepositions.

  • Single word prepositions: (after, on, in)
  • Complex prepositions: (in spite of, according to)

5. Preposition – place before

The name of a preposition itself points out that it should be before an object.

  • I put it in the purse (in-preposition; purse-object)

6. Prepositional Object

It is a rule that a pronoun should be in the object form when it follows a preposition.The non-disclosure agreement is between him and his client.

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