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Learning Zone
Learning Zone

Prepositional phrases – usage & examples

Level: C1


at a glance I could see at a glance that something was wrong. 
at hand We have no solutions at hand
at last You’re here at last
at least The disease killed at least two million people.
at once They started singing at once.
at random The candidates are selected at random.
at risk The whole area is at risk of flooding.
at times The children are at times aggressive and cruel.
at all times You should keep an eye on your children at all times.
at any time We can meet at any time you like.
at worst At worst, you’ll go to prison.


in advance Let me know in advance.
in all There were sixty of them in all.
in charge Who’s in charge here? I’m the boss.
in common Have we got anything in common?
in a hurry She was in such a hurry that she forgot to take her passport.
in the long run The machine will save energy in the long run.
 in trouble Have you ever helped anyone in trouble?
in vain I tried to get in touch with him but in vain.


on average How much do teachers earn in your country on average?
on board We met on board an ocean liner.
on business She’s gone to Barcelona on business.
on good terms We’re on good terms in spite of the divorce. 
on offer We have lots of goods on offer at present
on purpose Mum, she did it on purpose
 on second thoughts On second thoughts, I’d like to come.


by accident We met by accident.
by heart We had to learn the poem by heart.
by no means This is not, by no means, the end of the matter.
for a change We went to the seaside – just for a change.
for real Our friendship is not virtual – it’s for real.
out of breath I was out of breath after running from the city centre to the station.
out of order The lift was out of order, so we had to use the stairs. 
out of tune She was singing out of tune.


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