Introduction to Nouns/Verbs/Adjectives + Prepositions
In English there are many nouns, verbs and adjectives that are followed by one specific preposition. For the case of verbs + preposition, this is different from phrasal verbs where a verb can be followed by a number of different prepositions or adverbs which may change the original meaning of the verb. Phrasal verbs are discussed on another grammar information page.
NOUNS + PREPOSITIONS
Of course, there are more that exist, but if you learn these, that’s a very good beginning!
Words which refer to increases and decreases can be followed by ‘in’ or ‘of’. ‘In’ refers to something that has gone up or down; ‘of’ refers to a quantity or amount.
- There has been a large increase in unemployment since the beginning of the crisis.
- There has been an increase of about 40%.
VERBS + PREPOSITIONS
Here are some example sentences:
- The new product fully complies with European safety standards.
- We do not rely on rail transport, so our delivery will not be affected by the strike.
- The goods must be paid for no later than 60 days after receipt.
- She succeeded in passing her TOEIC with flying colors!
Some verbs can be followed by an object and a preposition:
- The couple borrowed money from the bank to buy their new house.
- Don’t forget to thank him for offering to drive you to the airport.
- She asked him for a raise.
There are also verbs that don’t take prepositions (whereas in French, they do!):
- I’ll phone the company tomorrow morning.
- They met to discuss the new smoking ban.
- She entered the room very quietly.
- He always asks his boss a lot of questions.
- His boss always patiently answers him.
- They told the unions that they wouldn’t sign the agreement.
ADJECTIVES + PREPOSITIONS
- Let me know if you would be interested in meeting with me. (The preposition ‘in’ is followed by a gerund).
- He is intent on finding the best deal even if he has to shop around.
- I’m not aware of anyone who knows how to cook as well as I do.
To remember all these different prepositions you need to memorize and read as much as possible in English. When you notice a verb/noun/adjective + preposition combination, take note of it and add it to your own personal lists.