Prepositions of position (place) and movement explained

What are the most common prepositions?

The most common prepositions which describe position (or place) and movement are:

At, on, in, to, from, onto, off, into, and out of.

 

How do I use ‘to, at, from’?

To, at and from can be used to describe something or someone who is going to, coming from, or not moving (position) from a place.

Examples:

  • Peter ran to the office because he was late. (movement or going to a place)
  • Peter was at the office all day. (place or position)
  • Peter came home from the office in the evening. (movement)

 

Examples of using ‘onto, on, off’?

Onto, on or off are usually used to describe place, position, or movement when looking at a line or surface (for example, a wall, a shelf, a table, the floor).

Examples:

  • Please put the glass on the table. (movement or going to a place)
  • The glass is on the table. (place or position)
  • The glass fell off the table. (movement)

 

Examples of using ‘into, in, out of’?

Into, in, and out of are used when talking about something which has sides (for example, a car, house, box, room, cupboard).

They are also used with park, garden, countryside and field.

Examples:

  • The man got into the car. (movement)
  • The man was in the car. (place or position)
  • The man got out of the car. (movement)

 

Common examples of prepositions and verbs

 

Verbs with prepositions of position: at, on, in Verbs with prepositions of movement: to, from, into, out of, onto, off

arrive

drive

stay

take

stop

move

work

fall

meet

run

park

carry

be

walk

live

ride

sleep

come

 

Some of these can be used with both, e.g., arrive at, and arrive from:

  • I arrived at the office at nine o’clock.
  • I arrived from London this morning.
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