A prepositional phrase is made up of a preposition and a noun phrase. We use prepositional phrases for many purposes, for example:

- as adverbials of time and place:

We will be back in a few days.
They drove to Glasgow

.- as a postmodifier in a noun phrase:

Helen is the girl in the red dress
We’ve got a new television with a thirty one inch screen.

- to show who did something:

The lion was killed by the hunter
I saw a wonderful painting by Van Gogh

- with double object verbs like give and get:

We gave five pounds to the woman on the corner.
They got a drink for me.

- after certain verbs, nouns and adjectives:

The book belongs to me.
I had an argument with my brother.
I feel sorry for you.



Hello oliza,

'in the video' is correct to speak about someone or something that appears in a video recording. 'on video' (without 'the') is used to talk about a film that is available outside the cinema, e.g. on DVD. Take a look at the definition and examples for 'video' in our dictionary (lower right corner of the page) for more.

Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team


How many kinds of prepositions do we have in English Language?

The following varieties exist:

FIRST VARIETY - five kinds:
(a) simple preposition: in, on, through, out, etc.
(b) compound preposition: throughout, etc.
(c) double preposition: in on, out of, from behind, from beneath, outside of, off to, etc.
(d) participial preposition: concerning, notwithstanding, given, during, etc.
(e) phrasal preposition:
(i) two-word phrasal preposition: apart from, because of, etc.
(ii) three- or four-word phrasal preposition: in view of, on account of, with regard to, with the intention of, etc.

SECOND VARIETY - four kinds:
(a) simple preposition

(b) complex preposition:
(i) compound preposition
(ii) phrasal preposition

(c) participial/deverbal preposition

(d) double preposition

THIRD VARIETY - four kinds:
(a) simple preposition

(b) complex preposition:
(i) two-word units (a word + a simple preposition); also called compound prepositions; e.g. because of.
(ii) three-word units (a simple preposition + a noun + a simple preposition); also known as phrasal prepositions; e.g. in view of.

(c) double preposition

(d) participial preposition

FOURTH VARIETY - three kinds:
(a) simple preposition: after, of, on, etc.

(b) compound preposition: underneath, alongside, etc.

(c) phrasal preposition:
(i) two-word units: because of, near to, etc.
(ii) three-word units: on grounds of, in lieu of, etc.

1. Which of the above varieties is correct based on British English? If any is correct, please choose it and comment on it

2. If none of the above varieties passes for British English, kindly provide the variety that does based on common/best practice.

3. Please consider words in these two categories:
(a) two-word closed compounds: alongside, underneath, etc.

(b) two-word spaced compounds: because of, near to, etc.
QUESTION: Since 'a' and 'b' are compounds, is it right to classify 'a' as COMPOUND PREPOSITIONS and 'b' as PHRASAL PREPOSITIONS? If not, kindly state the right classification.

Many thanks.

Hello value4education,

I'm afraid this kind of request goes far beyond what we are able to do here. Please remember that our primary role here is to maintain the site and add to the materials we have. In our remaining time we try to provide help for users who are using the material. Sometimes we will provide more general help with English or learning. However, what you are asking here is to effectively have a personal grammar tutor, which is not our role at all.

Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team


Kindly go through my linguistic reasoning below and state whether it is right or wrong. If it's wrong, please put it right. It is as follows:

This is the cover term for preposition, postposition and circumposition.

In English Language, only preposition is recognized. In line with the word order of English Language, an object is commonly expected to come after an adposition. This is why it is called a pre-position, which means to come before.

In other languages with a different word order, postposition and/or circumposition is recognized. An adposition becomes a postposition if it comes after its object. An adposition is classified as a circumposition if an adposition comes before its object and another adposition comes after the same object. Consider 'in view of'; the object us 'view', 'in' and 'of' are adpositions, 'in' comes before the object, and 'of' comes after the object. This is a picture of a circumposition. Though, according to the word order in English Language, another noun has to come after 'of'. This is a major argument for which circumposition is not recognized in English Language.

Thanks so very much.

Hello sir
when we do not use preposition plz tell me
can we write these sentence with or without preposition
1st- we are planning to go swimming this afternoon
or we are planning to go for swimming this afternoon
2nd- I am going to home in half an hour
or I am going home in half an hour
plzzzzz explain

Hello Ayub,

In 1, 'for' is not correct. 'to go swimming' is an idiom which is not normally changed. You could say 'go for a swim', which has much the same meaning, but it's a different construction.

No preposition is used before 'home' after the verbs 'go' or 'come' – that's just the way native speakers use these words.

Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team

Would you please tell whether this sentence is correct grammatically.
"After obtaining the change of difference between before and after intervention in each variable, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) with change of difference was performed."
I think that "between before and after intervention" is wrong because "between" should be followed by a noun phrase and "before and after intervention" is not a noun phrase; it is an adjective. There is a noun missing after "before and after intervention", for example, "between before- and after-intervention problem."
Thank you,

Hello marwa,

I'll answer your question, but if you're proofreading or editing an article, please know that we don't offer this kind of service. If that's the case, for future queries like this, please contact a professional proofreader.

I'm afraid that I don't completely understand this sentence, so it's a bit difficult to offer suggestions with full confidence. Could you perhaps say 'pre- and post-intervention'? These prefixes are commonly used to indicate 'before' and 'after' in formal or neutral contexts such as scientific writing.

What you say about 'between' makes sense to me, but I'm afraid it's still not completely clear to me what this 'problem' is. What about 'After calculating the difference in the pre- and post-intervention variables ...'? Does that make sense? The word 'difference' already implies 'change', so I think the word 'change' is superfluous here – better to leave it out if so. But I'm not sure if I've understood what you want to say.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

Thanks Kirk.
This is only an example I faced while editing.
I do not interfere with meaning. I just want to make sure of the rule I knew; that is, any preposition should be followed by noun phrase and that is why "before and after intervention" is not a noun phrase but an adjective, so there is a missing noun or we can change it to be "between pre- and post-intervention" so that it becomes a noun phrase.
I just need to know the rule.
For clarification, I cannot say "between before and after school" but we can say "between before- and after-school activities."

Hello marwa,

OK. Yes, prepositions should be followed by a noun phrase. 'pre- and post-intervention' is still an adjectival phrase, so it doesn't make any more sense after 'between' than the original phrase. That's why I suggested putting 'variables' after it, though, as I said, I really don't understand what this sentence is supposed to mean. Perhaps 'procedures' instead of 'variables'? Without understanding the text better, I'm afraid I can't make any more suggestions.

Hope this helps.

Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team