List 11 - Prepositions





 sacrifice to:  Johnny sacrificed much of his free time to do charity work.

sail from:  We’ll be sailing from this harbour to Calais next week.

satisfy with:  Anne is still not satisfied with his explanation.

save for:  Pam saved a piece of pizza for my supper.

save from:  Firemen saved the occupants of the building from being burnt to death.

say about:  She wasn’t pleased when she overheard what I said about her.

say to:  What do you want to say to her now that she has left you?

scoff at:  He scoffed at my suggestion that we renovate the clubhouse.

search for:  The police searched the whole woodland for the escaped convict.

secede from:  Why did the state secede from the Union in 1816?

see into:  The accountant will see into the discrepancies in the books.

sell for:  Jack has been selling tickets for the concert at a higher price.

separate from:  Her father is separated from her mother.

serve as:  This spare room will serve as a bedroom while they are staying with us.

serve under:  He is serving under his father-in-law as an assistant manager.

sever from:  He severed branches from the tree with a chainsaw.

shake with:  At the reunion we shook hands warmly with each other.

share in:  The wife does not share in her husband’s enthusiasm for jogging.

shield from:  New import tariffs will be introduced to shield local firms from foreign competition.

shop for:  I have been shopping for a Mexican hat, but haven’t found one I like.

shout at:  Please don’t shout at the dogs; it will not stop them from barking.

shout for:  Why do you shout for help when you are not in danger?

shudder at:  I shudder at the thought of the child dying from injuries in the crash.

sin against:  I feel I’ve sinned against my religion by raising doubts and querying about it.

sit at:  He would sit at the table without eating but watch other people eat.

slack off:  Tourism business at the resort slacks off during the winter.

slide on:  The kids enjoyed themselves sliding on the ice.

smile at: I mistakenly smiled at her, thinking I knew her, but she looked away.

snap at:  I don’t understand why she often snapped at me for no good reason.

sneer at:  They sneered at his ludicrous suggestion.

speak about:  His grandfather would speak to you about anything under the sun.

speak of:  He had his reason for never ever speaking of his ex.

speak on:  George loved to speak towomen on women’s issues.                                                

specialize in:  The store specialized in coffins for dogs and cats.

spring at:  The showman touched the head of a cobra with a stick and it sprung at him.

spur on:  His initial success spurred him on.

stand on:  She stood on tiptoe to pluck a pear.

star in:  She will star in a new movie whose title is yet to be announced.

stare at:  They just stared at each other not believing they had not seen each other for forty years.

start for:  The weather turned bad and we had no choice but to start for home.

start with:  Let’s start our training session with doing some warm-up exercises.

stay at:  His wife resents his staying late at the office almost every night.

stay with:  I prefer staying at home with my dog to going out.

steal from:  Two policemen were arrested for stealing from the police station.

stop from:  His parents tried to stop him from smoking excessively.

strike against:  The ship sank after its side struck against an iceberg.

strike for:  The workers unanimously decided to strike for higher wages.

strip from:  Some members of a tribe stripped the bark from the trees to use as medicine.

strive after:  Artists continuously strive after artistic beauty.

strive against:  Man has to constantly strive against the elements.

strive for:  We must always strive for perfection in whatever we do.

struggle with: He had to struggle furiously with his attacker till help arrived.

study for:  She knows she has only two weeks left to study hard for her A level exam.

submit to:  Both parties agreed to submit their dispute to arbitration.

subsist on:  They subsisted on canned food during the winter.

subtract from:  He thought he could subtract his personal expenses from his gross profit.

succeed in:  The escaped prisoner succeeded in evading capture for several months.

sue for:  The minister threatened to sue the opposition member for slander.

suffer from:  Millions of children in the world today suffer from malnutrition.

suggest to:  She suggested to me that I should buy her more fresh flowers.

suit to:  I think you did not suit your dress to the occasion.

supplement by: Jack supplemented his income by driving a taxi.

supply with:  Only two companies supply the hospital with medical equipment.

surpass in:  Mary surpasses her sister in beauty.

surround by:  He emerged from the conference centre and was surrounded by noisy reporters.

swerve off:  Driving quickly on a wet road caused his car to swerve off the road into a ravine.

sympathize with:  I sympathize deeply with the bereaved family.


talk about:  Will you stop talking about me behind my back?

talk with:  I talked with her on the telephone, but she suggested we talk in person.

tally with:  The two witnesses’ accounts of the accident don’t tally with each other.

tantamount to:  His statement is tantamount to a confession.

taste like:  The new sauce tasted exactly like sour milk.

taste of:  The soup tasted strongly of water.

tease about:  We teased her about her many childhood fights with boys.

tell about:  She never told me about the big money she won in a lottery.

tend toward:  Joe tends towards obesity.

thank for:  I thanked her warmly for not grumbling the whole day.

think about:  Money is what I think about all the time.

threaten with:  Many fish species are threatened with extinction due to over fishing.

thrive on:  Many marine creatures still thrive on coastal mangrove swamps.

throw at:  Tom threw a rotten egg at the speaker’s face.

throw to:  You are supposed to throw the ball to me, not him.

traffic in:  John was arrested by the police for trafficking in stolen goods.

trample on/upon:  Despite the “keep off the grass” sign, the visitors trampled on the grass.

transfer to:  We can only transfer a skill from one person to another through training.

transform into: The once sleepy fishing village has been transformed into a tourist centre.

translate into:  Ideas remain ideas unless they are translated into action.

trespass on:  As it’s late now, let’s leave and not trespass on their hospitality

trick into:  They were tricked into investing in a dishonest scheme for making money.

trip over:  He nearly tripped over the toys.

triumph over:  With perseverance she would ultimately triumph over adversity.

trust in:  I trust in God.

trust with:  Not all the banks can be trusted with people’s money.

tuck in:  I forgot to tuck in my shirt when I took that photo.


undertake to:  The new government undertook to reduce personal income tax.

unite behind:  The leader called upon the people to unite behind him to deter foreign aggression.


value at:  His wealthy uncle bought paintings valued at over $300,000.

vary from:  As a street vendor, his takings vary from day to day.

veer off:  The car veered off the road into a ravine.

vie in:  John and Johnny have been vying in the same contest for the past four years.

vie for:  Only three contestants vied for the top prize.

vote on:  As the men couldn’t agree on the most beautiful lady, they decided to vote on it.

vow to:   She vowed to devote the rest of her life to caring for the poor.

vaccinate against:  Nowadays children are vaccinated against a variety of diseases.


wager on:  Bob wagered one hundred dollars on the white horse.

warn about:  I warned the kids about the danger of playing with fire.

whisk away:  The police arrested the suspect and whisked him away in the police car.

withdraw from:  She withdrew from the beauty contest due to death threats made against her.

work for:  She was told that she had been working for a crook.

work with:  I find it utterly impossible to work with her unless she changes her attitude.

worry about:  She worries more about me than I worry about her.

worry over:  I habitually worry over the slightest thing.


yank on:  The kid kept yanking on the dog’s tail and before long got bitten.

yearn for:  Joan yearns for Mr. Right to appear.

yearn to:  He couldn’t get used to life in a boarding school and every day he yearned to go home.

yell at:  They yelled at him not to get into the bullring.






about between outside
above beyond over
aboard but past
across by regarding
after concerning round
against despite since
along down than
alongside during through
amid except throughout
among for to
around from toward/s
as in under
astride including underneath
at inside unlike
atop into until/till
bar like unto
before near up
behind of upon
below off with
beneath on within
beside onto without
besides out