Grammar Bite #7: Prepositions You Can Live Without

9 December 2010


In the last grammar bite we talked about prepositions you can’t live without – those that are required to make a sentence correct.


Today we’ll look at phrases where you can eliminate one or more prepositions and make your writing more concise.


Instead of using this…

Use this…

face up to someone/something

face someone/something

try out something

try something

not stand for something

not stand something

put something off

delay/postpone something



Certainly it’s grammatically correct to use the longer expressions, but it’s always a good idea to be concise whenever possible.


Here are some sentences that use these expressions:


I have to face the truth and stop procrastinating.

You should face your opponents and defend your opinion.

Jerry said he’d like to try the new Italian restaurant in Soho.

Her mother refuses to stand such behaviour.

We will have to delay the meeting until tomorrow.

Jenny postponed her trip to the Middle East.


Can you think of other phrasal verbs like those above that you can shorten? Give us your input (or ask your questions) in the comments. Thanks!

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