Whether you’re learning English as a second language in a class, self-studying, reviewing grammar concepts, or studying in middle school, you need to know these little facts about prepositions…
- Prepositions are a part of speech (examples include in, at, on, to, around, above, with, etc).
- In sentences, they appear in phrases (aptly called prepositional phrases).
- Prepositional phrases also contain a noun or noun phrase.
- The noun that follows a preposition is called the object of the preposition.
You should know these facts for many reasons:
- Objects can’t be subjects;
- Objects of prepositions can’t be subjects;
- Prepositional phrases might appear at the beginning of a sentence; and
- No part of the prepositional phrase can be considered the subject of that sentence
Now, test your knowledge. Decide which two of these sentences are correct:
- In the summer rains a lot.
- In the summer, it rains a lot.
- On the stove simmers my noodles.
- On the stove, my noodles simmer.
- In the summer rains a lot. (Incorrect)
- In the summer, it rains a lot. (Correct)
- On the stove simmers my noodles. (Incorrect)
- On the stove, my noodles simmer. (Correct)
How did you do? Just remember: your verb will never agree with the object of a preposition because objects can’t be subjects, and verbs only agree with subjects.