How Many Prepositions Can You Use in a Row? Or … When Is a Preposition an Adverb (or a Verb Particle)?

Do you know the answer to this question, which I pose in my latest guest post on Mignon Fogarty’s Grammar Girl blog? How Many Prepositions Can You Use in a Row?

4 thoughts on “How Many Prepositions Can You Use in a Row? Or … When Is a Preposition an Adverb (or a Verb Particle)?

  1. “•If the word’s meaning is literal—for example, if you were to talk about pulling in a net, where the “in” indicates the direction you’re pulling that net—you can call it a preposition …”

    This doesn’t seem right to me. If the net is the object of the preposition, then I am in the net pulling something–not necessarily the very net that I’m in.

    • Tim, You win the Writing.Rocks Eagle Eye Award. You’re right. Thank you. I appreciate that you read my whole post, that you read it with care, that you brought such discernment to what you read, and that you took the time to comment here. I’ve submitted a request to have “pulling in a net” changed to “playing in a net.”

      Update: Mignon Fogarty, aka Grammar Girl, immediately made this edit. Thanks again, Tim.

  2. OMG Marcia. I have so much to learn. I’m so incredibly fortunate (yea, my words and based-on-experience opinion) to have been born with a “writing ear” as part of the original equipment. Like carrying a tune or singing in harmony (also natural/easy for me), a litany of writing skills and techniques have always been at my disposal … with zero knowledge about what any of them is called or the proper rules about how to use them. Wow. I am blessed. And … English is an amazing and HARD language.

    • Hi, Monique. Lovely to hear from you. I couldn’t agree more about the complexities of our language. The more certain I am about something that I “know” about words, the more likely I am to discover that I’m wrong—or at least simplistic in my thinking. What rich territory to explore.

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