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English Grammar Step by Step:
• Unit 1: Negative and interrogative sentences
• Unit 2: Short answers
• Unit 3: Question tags
• Unit 4: Questions and exclamations
• Unit 5: So, neither, nor, either
• Unit 6: Be, used to, would, be/get/become used to, dare, have, get, become, grow, go, turn, fall and feel
• Unit 7: Verb tenses: forms
• Unit 8: Irregular verbs
• Unit 9: Verb tenses: uses
• Unit 10: Personal pronouns, possessives and reflexive pronouns
• Unit 11: The genitive case
• Unit 12: Singular and plural nouns
• Unit 13: Gender
• Unit 14: A, an, some, any, no, not, none, each, every and the; compounds of some, any, no and every
• Unit 15: Neither, not...either, none, not...any, both and all
• Unit 16: A few, few, a lot, lots, a little, little, many, much, no and plenty
• Unit 17: Enough, too, so and such
• Unit 18: Comparative and superlative sentences
• Unit 19: The adjective order
• Unit 20: Relative clauses
• Unit 21: Do and make
• Unit 22: Modal verbs
• Unit 23: Infinitives, gerunds and present participles
• Unit 24: Conditional sentences
• Unit 25: Passive sentences
• Unit 26: Reported speech
• Unit 27: Purpose
• Unit 28: Word order
• Unit 29: Inversion
• Unit 30: Connectors
• Unit 31: Prepositions
• Unit 32: Phrasal verbs
Intermediate English Grammar:
• Unit 9: Irregular verbs
English Grammar for Beginners:
• Unit 1: A, an, some any and the
• Unit 2: Some, any + body/one, + thing, + where
• Unit 3: Personal pronouns and possessives
• Unit 4: Reflexive pronouns, the reciprocal pronoun "each other" and object pronouns
• Unit 5: List of irregular verbs
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English Grammar Step by Step
UNIT 31 - Page 2
Insert the correct preposition in the spaces provided.
13 Revision exercise.
a Go straight on. Then turn (__________ the) right __________
the crossroads. The school is __________ your left.
b There’s something __________ the bottom of the bottle.
c What’s showing __________ the cinema?
d I’m going to give my parents a surprise __________ New Year’s
e Let’s meet __________ the bus-stop.
f Our plane landed __________ the airport bang __________ time.
g That couple has been snogging __________ the film started.
It’s almost ending and I don’t think they even know what
h He discovered that she was a vampire because he couldn’t
see herself __________ the mirror.
i Don’t sit __________ the ground, or you’ll get dirty.
j He was made to appear __________ court as an accused.
k My boyfriend is waiting for me __________ the post office.
l You must hand the documents in __________ Thursday. If you
give them in later, they will not be accepted.
m ‘Where’s your father?’
‘He’s __________ bed. He’s terribly ill.’
n The kids are swimming __________ the lake.
o We’re going to Moscow __________ 14th August.
p They are leaving __________ New Year’s Day.
q Everything occurred __________ a hot summer day.
r She was sitting __________ her desk when I came in her office.
s ‘Where’s the bus-stop?’
‘It’s __________ the corner.’
t They are sitting __________ the bed crying.
u Look! There’s a cockroach __________ the floor.
v This suit hasn’t been dry-cleaned __________ two months.
w I haven’t read a Gothic novel __________ I was a teenager.
x We’ll contact you __________ a month. (in the period of a
month, but not later.)
y She has her office __________ the third floor.
z Her office is __________ number 25.
He flew from London to Berlin. (from one place to another)
He flew to Berlin from London. (less usual than the one above)
She met a boy from Paris. (From expresses ‘origin’.)
She went to the USA. (To expresses ‘destination’.)
The train from Paris is the train that comes from Paris.
The train to Paris is the train that goes to Paris.
He ran into the building. (Into expresses movement from outside
He ran in the building. (He was inside the building. There is
no movement from outside to inside.)
Don’t put your hands in(to) your pockets? (There is no ambiguity
if we use in, so in is possible instead of into. However, into
is a better and safer alternative.)
Come in, please! (In is an adverb here; into is always
a preposition, that is a preposition is followed by a
noun, pronoun or gerund, but an adverb is not.)
Put those books on/on to/onto the table.
a She saw him walk __________ the park alone for at least
b He went __________ the house with the purpose of finding any
clue related to the murder.
c She was very infuriated with his remarks and marched __________
d The plane __________ New York will take off in a few minutes.
(= The one that goes to New York.)
e I’ve come __________ my place __________ here just for nothing.
The children’s department is up the stairs. (opposite down
Stop going up and down, will you? (an adverb phrase)
Go along this road (= follow this road) until/till
(time conjunction) you find a very tall building.
Go along this road to that tall building. (until/till is
not possible instead of to)
This bag can hold up to six kilos. (until/till is not
Go across this road. (= Go to the other side of the road.)
We went through a tunnel. (three dimensions)
Stop running round/around me, or you’ll feel dizzy.
a She was driving __________ this (flat) street when her car
b We are on the third floor, so you’ll have to go __________ to
the first floor.
c This demijohn can hold __________ __________ twenty litres.
d We’ll have to go __________ a dense forest.
e Why don’t we go __________ the block to stretch our legs.
They were driving towards Rome. (ie, in that direction)
We were driving away from Rome. (away from is the opposite
We’ll go to Amsterdam via/by Brussels. (ie, by way of of
This channel will broadcast via/by satellite. (ie, using
I discovered what had happened via/through a local newspaper.
(ie I read it in a local newspaper.)
This ticket is only valid within the country. (ie, inside
We walked past/beyond/by the park. (ie We went further than
She lives beyond those mountains. (ie She lives behind
She’s beyond suspicion. (ie She cannot be guilty.)
This mathematical problem is beyond me. (ie I cannot do it.)
What he said is beyond belief. (ie It cannot be believed.)
a I learnt he was dead __________ his mother.
b When I saw her, she was walking __________ the beach. She
sometimes goes there and sits on the sand to watch the stars.
c We had better leave now, as the situation is getting
__________ our control.
d It’s __________ me why he left his studies.
e We could come back home __________ Barcelona.
We have to go over/across that bridge. (We have to go to the
other side of that bridge.)
You’ll have to swim across the river. (Over is not possible
He lives across/over the street. (on the other side of the
He escaped by climbing over the wall. (Across is impossible
We have the intention of riding across the plateau in only
two hours. (ie, of crossing an area.)
We saw her running across the conference hall. (ie, inside a
We spent two hours watching the water running under the
bridge. (Compare this with the following: She run across/
over the bridge.)
There’s a tennis ball under the table. (The opposite of under
is on: There’s a tennis ball on the table.)
a They wounded man dragged __________ some trees so as not
to be discovered.
b They are __________ the road. Let’s call their names out.
c So as to save space, you can put it __________ your bed.
d We’re going to have dinner. Can you put the dinner things
__________ the table?
e We’ll have to jump __________ an electric fence. Therefore,
we’ll have to employ these long sticks.
I’d like to travel all round/around/over the world. (= I’d
like to travel worldwide.)
I’d like to travel throughout/about the world. (ie, worldwide)
The priest has a crucifix over/above his bed. (The crucifix is
hung on the wall. The opposite of over or above is below: The
bed is below the crucifix. Compare this with the following:
The crucifix is under the bed.)
There is a helicopter flying over/across the sea. (Across
means ‘crossing’; over does not necessarily have this meaning.)
The helicopter is flying over/above that tall building. (There
is a slight difference between over and above, as over implies
that the helicopter is nearer to the tall building.)
The plane was flying above the clouds. (opposite: below the
The Perkins live above Mary and the Adams, below (her). (She
lives on the third floor; the Perkins, on the fourth; the
Adams, on the second.)
Tomorrow the temperature will be below zero. (The opposite
of ‘below zero’ is ‘above zero’.)
a A bird is hovering __________ those trees.
b She’s planning to sail __________ the Atlantic in a small
boat next spring. (= She wants to cross the Atlantic in a
small boat next spring.)
c She is considering the idea of travelling __________ America.
d There is a spotlight __________ the door. (in a higher position)
e My father works __________ ground, since he is a miner.
19 Revision exercise.
a I want to go __________ Madrid. Is this the bus __________
b We sheltered from the heavy snow __________ a bridge.
c Why she did that sort of thing is __________ my understanding.
d I got __________ the shops just __________ time: they were
already shutting up.
e Your T-shirts are __________the bottom drawer.
f ‘What’s the time?’
‘It’s three minutes __________ two. (2.03)
g We’ll have to go __________ the border if we want to be free.
h ‘What’s __________ your desk?’
‘It’s a heater to keep my feet warm.’
i She works __________ King Street.
j She works __________ 20 King Street.
k She works __________ number 20.
l They arrived __________ the hotel __________ twenty __________
m Go __________ the house and bring me a Phillips screwdriver.
n She thinks she’s very pretty, as she’s forever looking at
herself __________ the mirror.
o This bus can take __________ __________ fifty-five people plus
the driver and the conductor.
p We had to push our way __________ the crowd to shake the
q Our dog jumped __________ the hedge and ran __________ the
r There are ants all __________ the house.
s If I were you, I would place your new hi-fi __________ that
table and the loudspeakers __________ those pictures.
t Aids is transmitted __________ blood, semen or vaginal
u They are coming __________ home __________ dusk.
v They play away __________ January 15th, but __________
home __________ January 22nd.
w You’ve been poking fun at me __________ the last twenty
minutes. Don’t you think it’s time to stop?
x I haven’t dropped in on them __________ February.
y He was driving __________ this street when the bomb exploded.
z It rained buckets__________ the match.
There were over/above five thousand people at the
demostration. (over/above = more than)
She is over/above him. (She is a captain and he is a
lieutenant. The opposite is He is under/below her.)
He comes from an upper-class family, so he considers us
beneath him. (He believes that he is superior to us just
because he comes from an upper-class family.)
Beneath/Underneath her quick-tempered exterior, there is a
great woman. (Her quick-tempered exterior hides a great woman.)
Beneath (very formal)/Below/Under its waters lies his
treasure. (Compare: His treasure lies under water/underwater.)
A treasure is hidden below/beneath/under the surface of this
Under his régime, the country killed a lot of innocent people,
just because they were thought to be inferior. (When he ruled
the country, he ordered that those who were considered inferior
should be exterminated.)
She had the accident because she was driving under the influence
of alcohol. (The alcohol she had drunk was the cause of the
He found a coin under/underneath/beneath the carpet. (The carpet
covered/hid the coin.)
There is a secret passage under/underneath/beneath the castle.
(The passage is underground.)
a He refuses to work as a waiter, as he thinks this job is
b This magazine is for people __________ the age of eighteen.
(This magazine is for people who have reached the age of
c People __________ the age of eighteen cannot read this magazine.
d We were much happier __________ the former boss.
e __________ his cruel appearance, he is very warm-hearted.
There’s nobody in/inside the house. (ie, the house is empty.)
We saw a lot of people outside the building. (Outside is
the opposite of inside or in.)
She went out of/outside the building. (= She left the building.)
I’m afraid she’s out. (ie, She’s not at home, in the office,
My dog jumped on/on to/onto my bed. (The opposite of on, on to
or onto is off: My dog jumped off my bed.)
a The audience applauded as the group of actors went __________
the stage. (= The audience applauded as the group of actors
left the stage.)
b ‘Take two thousand pounds from the safe.’
‘There is nothing __________ the safe!’
‘Oh, dear! We’ve been robbed!’
c He’s __________, but he’ll be with you in a jiffy. He went
just round the corner.
d Under no circumstances should you go __________ __________
this room. (= Under no circumstances should you leave this
e He climbed __________ the roof so that he could take a
better photograph of the place.
I need to buy a book on/about the fauna and flora of
the Iberian peninsula. (I need to buy a book that deals with
the fauna and flora of the Iberian peninsula.)
‘I’d like to tell you something.’
‘What is it about?’ (What do you want to tell me?)
‘It’s about your husband.’ (It has to do with your husband.)
I saw him somewhere about/around the park. (I saw him near
There were a lot of cigarette ends strewn about/(all) round/
(all) around the place. (ie, all over the place.)
How/What about going to the cinema this afternoon? (Why do we
not go to the cinema this afternoon?)
‘I’m going to the shopping centre.’
‘Can you post this letter for me while you are about it?’ (Can
you post this letter for me at the same time that you go to the
There were trees around/round/about the square. (They
surrounded the square.)
a I’d like to tell you something __________ Timmy.
b There were lots of old newspapers scattered __________ the hut.
c How ________ your exam results?
d She’s writing her thesis __________ the effects of man upon
e I’m going to cook something for myself. Would you like me
to prepare something while I’m __________ it?
From...to can also relate to time:
She works here from morning to night.
He went out with my sister from 1995 to 1997.
See section 5. From...until/till is not possible here. You may
use until/till to mean ‘go as far as’: Don’t get off the train
Both on and onto (or more formally, on to) can indicate
movement, but onto (or on to) very often implies movement
to a higher or lower surface:
The tamer made the lion jump onto/on to/on a stool.
(On might suggest the lion stayed on the stool jumping.)
She got onto/on to/on the train.
We went to a mountain refuge. The bedroom was not very
big and had bunk beds. During the night, I woke up
because I felt something viscous dripping onto/on to
my face from the bed above. I turned on my torch to
see what was going on. The viscid substance was blood.
Somebody had killed my friend!
On to (not onto) must be used when on and to bear no relation
to each other:
She went on to explain why I should give up the struggle
to free them. (on + a to-infinitve)
Go straight on/ahead to the next traffic lights.
(= Go straight on/ahead until you reach the next traffic
You can also say The children’s department is upstairs.
See section 5 in this unit.
Notice the usage of to here.
Toward is also possible, especially in American English.
See section 4 in this unit.
Outside and out of are also possible here.
See the next section.
In a very formal style, we can often use beneath instead of
We spent hours watching the water running beneath
There is a tennis ball beneath the table.
They were under/beneath some trees to protect
themselves from the sun.
All emphasizes the idea of ‘everywhere’, but it may be left
out: I’ve been (all) round/around/over Asia. The verb
‘travel’ can be used without any preposition: I’d like to
travel the world.
If we remove ‘her’, we have an adverb instead of a preposition.
In this particular case, the preposition may be omitted.
We can also say under the ground or underground (adverb).
Above may convey a greater quantity (etc) than over. The
opposite of above is below; of over, under.
Over implies that there is only one rank (etc) superior to
him. Above may suggest that there is more than one. The
opposite of over is under; of above, below.
See sections 17 and 18 in this unit.
Inside and in can also be adverbs: There’s nobody in/inside.
Outside of and inside of are often used in American English: We
saw a lot of people outside of the building. If we remove ‘the
building’, we convert outside into an adverb: We saw a lot of
Out is an adverb.
See section 14 in this unit.
If we use on, we mean that the subject being discussed is
more formal and serious.
Author: Miquel Molina i Diez
Pages: 1, 2, 3 and the key
1 Negative and interrogative sentences (Page 2 and the key)
2 Short answers (Page 2 and the key)
3 Question tags (Page 2 and the key)
4 Questions and exclamations (Page 2 and the key)
5 So, neither, nor, either (the key)
6 Be, used to, would, be/get/become used to, dare, have, get, become, grow, go, turn, fall and feel (Page 2 and the key)
7 Verb tenses: forms (Page 2 and the key)
8 Irregular verbs
9 Verb tenses: uses (Page 2, Page 3, Page 4, Page 5 and the key)
10 Personal pronouns, possessives and reflexive pronouns (Page 2 and the key)
11 The genitive case (the key)
12 Singular and plural nouns (Page 2 and the key)
13 Gender (the key)
14 A, an, some, any, no, not, none, each, every and the; compounds of some, any, no and every (Page 2, Page 3 and the key)
15 Neither, not...either, none, not...any, both and all (the key)
16 A few, few, a lot, lots, a little, little, many, much, no and plenty (the key)
17 Enough, too, so and such (the key)
18 Comparative and superlative sentences (Page 2 and the key)
19 Adjective order (the key)
20 Relative clauses (Page 2 and the key)
21 Do and make (the key)
22 Modal verbs (Page 2, Page 3 and the key)
23 Infinitives, gerunds and present participles (Page 2 and the key)
24 Conditional sentences (Page 2 and the key)
25 Passive sentences (the key)
26 Reported speech (Page 2 and the key)
27 Purpose (the key)
28 Word order (the key)
29 Inversion (the key)
30 Connectors (Page 2 and the key)
31 Prepositions (Page 2, Page 3 and the key)
32 Phrasal verbs (the key)