Preposition

 

Prepositions give students a hard time. Although there are rules, these rules are not 100% reliable as there are a lot of exceptions and idiomatic usage. The list that follows gives an overall idea of the most frequent prepositions in examples indicating some of the many relations expressed by them such as: place; position; direction; origin; cause; instrument; time;manner; measure; addition; exclusion; etc...

 

On    In    At   By    For   To    Between    Above    Over    Under

Through    Into    Onto    Up    Down    Near    Out    Of    Before

After     Along    Across     Around    Beside    Next to    Behind

In front of   From   With   Without    About   Opposite   On/Off 

Towards   Beyond  Against  Amid  Beneath   Like  Since  Until

 

ON

- With days of the week. ( on Monday; on Friday )

- With dates ( on March 27th; on Christimas day )

- With some expressions   ( on purpose; on business; on foot; on   holiday; on time - pontualmente; on someone's own; on a trip; on a tour; on a cruise )

- on a street; on an avenue; on a road

- on the left  /  on the right

- on the tv; on the screen; on the radio; on the phone; on the internet

- on the bus; on the train; on the plane; on the subway; etc...

  ( = on board )

- on the house ( = por conta da casa )

- on the floor; on the ground

- on page 35; on the cover of a magazine

- on the door; on the wall; on the shirt ( on the surface of )

- on the first, second floor.

- on a farm, on an island, on the coast; on the river

- on (at) the corner of a street.

- on a bicycle; on a horse; on a motorcycle ( sitting on )

- on a diet; on strike; on fire

 

IN

- in an apartment; in a house

- in time (à tempo)

- in October; in the winter; in 1997; in the past; in the future; in the 1970's; in the 19th century

- in ink (à tinta); in pencil (à lápis)

- in love

- in public; in private; in a hurry

- in my neighborhood ; in Barra; in Rio; in Paraná; in Brazil; in South America; in the continent

- in a street; road; avenue (= on)

- in (inside) the bag; in the room

- in a car; in a taxi; in a boat

- in the morning; in the afternoon; in the evening

- in a few minutes; in 2 weeks

- in the end (finally)

- in the garden; in the garage; in the bathroom

- in the hand; in your mouth

- in the pool; in the sea; in the river (swimming)

- in the mountains; in the sky; in the world

- in a line; in a row; in a queue

- in a photograph; in a book; in a newspaper; in a magazine; in a letter

- in the corner of a room.

- in the back (of a car)

- in bed; in hospital (sick); in prison

- in the rain; in the sun; in the shade; in the dark; in bad weather

- in words; in figures; in BLOCK LETTERS.

- in a restaurant (=at)

 

AT

- at the age of; at 16; at a speed of; at 100mph; at 100ºC

- at home; at work; at school; at university

- at the doctor's; at the hairdresser; at Paul's (house)

- at the party; at the concert; at the station; at the airport; at the meeting; at a conference

- at sea (ao mar, not in the water)

- at the corner (of a street, also on)

- at the front; at the back (of a room, for instance)

- at first (initially)

- at the door; at the window; at the bus stop

- at the top; at the bottom (of a page)

- at the end (of a street, of a line)

- at the beginning ( of the concert / of the month)

- at 8 o'clock; at midnight; at sunset; at night

- at the moment; at present; at the same time

- at the weekend (also on)

- at Christmas; at Easter

- at the table (à mesa)

- at once (= immediately)

- at least (= pelo menos)

- at 4666 Americas Avenue

- at heart (basically)

- at all (de forma alguma)
- at peace; at war

- at first sight (à primeira vista)

 

BY

- by bus; by car; by plane; etc

- by (near) - He's sitting by the door.

- by Friday (no later than)

- by myself; by themselves (= alone)

- send a package by post

- do something by hand

- pay by check; by credit card

- It happened by mistake; by accident; by chance

- by air; by road; by sea

- in passive sentences - The book was written by Paulo Coelho; he was scratched by a cat

- A play by Shakespeare; an opera by Mozart

 

FOR

- for two hours; for a year; for the weekend

- (noun) + for = a check for; a reason for

- He did it for me (in my place)

- feel sorry for; apologize for; famous for

- wait for; leave a place for another

- care for; apply for

 

TO

- go to a place; have been to a place

- on my way to; a trip to; welcome to

- (noun) + to; a solution to; an answer to; a reaction to; an invitation to

- marry to someone; be engaged to someone

- from .... to....., similar to

 

BETWEEN X AMONG (entre)

I'm sitting between my 2 best friends

I enjoy being among friends (3 or more)

 

ABOVE (acima)

The plane was flying above the town

 

OVER

- Over the summer (during)

- There is a sign over the door (perpendicularmente acima)

 

UNDER (embaixo / sob)

There is a ten-dollar bill under that book

 

THROUGH (através)

Look through the window; walk through the park

 

INTO = in (but needs "movement idea")

- He is running into the store

- While we were getting into the car....

 

ONTO = on (needs "moviment idea")

Susan was putting the grocery bags onto the kitchen counter

 

UP (para cima)

Put those boxes up; please

Climb up the stairs

 

DOWN (para baixo)

- Go down the street

- Sit down, please

 

NEAR = Close (próximo)

My cousins live near us

 

OUT

- The Smiths have moved out.

- Go out now ! Take the books out of the bag.

- Get out of a car, one out of ten (um em dez)

- Out of revenge (por vingança); out of curiosity (por curiosidade)

 

OF

- advantage of; disadvantage of; a picture of; the cause of

- nice of you; kind of you; stupid of you

- capable of; afraid of; scared of; fond of; tired of; sure of

- take care of; think of; remind ...of

- accuse of; die of; consist of

- the director of the company; the owner of the shop

 

BEFORE (antes) x AFTER (depois)

- Meet me before lunch

- I'll see you after class

- Before my eyes (diante...)

- The cat was running after the cat. (atrás)

 

ALONG (ao longo) (together)

- The were police cars along the avenue.

- I'm going to the mall. Do you want to come along ?

 

ACROSS (através / "cruzando")

- we walked across the park

- He lives across from me (on the other side)

 

AROUND (ao redor / em torno de)

- We had to go around the block.

- The trip takes around 6 hours (=about)

 

BESIDE / NEXT TO (ao lado)

The mall is beside / next to the supermarket.

 

BEHIND / IN THE BACK OF (atrás)

The line was big. There were a lot of people behind me.

 

IN FRONT OF (na frente de)

There are many buildings in front of the beach.

 

FROM (de....) (origin)

- from me to you; he comes from Australia

- different from

- suffer from something

- from hearsay (de ouvir dizer)

- translate from one language into another

 

WITH (com) x WITHOUT (sem)

- I'm going with you; I did it without help

- supply someone with; collide with

 

ABOUT

- The book is about animals (sobre)

- The book is about 200 pages long (=around) (em torno)

- complain about something; think about; read about; talk about

 

OPPOSITE (on the other side of...)

The school is opposite the church.

 

ON  //  OFF  (switch on and off)

- Turn on the TV, Jill.

- You can turn off the radio, I'm not listening to it.

 

TOWARDS (in the direction of)

The troops were moving towards the city.

(backwards / forward / sideward)

 

BEYOND (além de)

- Can you see beyond those trees ?

- This is beyond my imagination.

 

AGAINST (contra)

- Everybody voted against the proposal

- He was sailing against the wind.

 

AMID / AMIDST (entre / no meio de)

- We are amid enemies.

 

BENEATH (sob / inferior a)

- I could feel the cold beneath the clothes.

 

LIKE (como)

- The eats like a horse.

- I don't feel like eating now, thanks.

 

SINCE (desde)

We haven't seen each other since January.

 

UNTIL (Till)  =  (até)

I'll wait until the end of the month.