Common Mistakes in English Language(11)

Common Mistakes in English Language


Mistakes are often made by using a wrong preposition after certain words. The following list includes the words which most often give trouble.

1. Divide into parts, not in parts

Don’t say: I divided the cake in four parts

Say: I divided the cake into four parts.

NOTE: But a thing may be divided “in half” or “in two“: as, “He divided the apple in half (or in two).”

2. Doubt (noun) of or about, not for.

Don’t say: I have no doubt for his ability.

Say: I have no doubt of (or about) his ability.

NOTE: Also “doubtful of“: as “I am doubtful of his ability to pass”

3. Dressed in, not with.

Don’t say: The woman was dressed with black.

Say: The woman was dressed in black.

NOTE: “The woman was in black,” is also correct.

4. Exception to, not of.

Don’t say: This is an exception of the rule.

Say: This is an exception to the rule.

NOTE: But we say “with the exception of“: as, “He liked all his studies with the exception of Latin.”

5. Exchange for, not by.

Don’t say: They exchanged wheat by machinery.

Say: They exchanged wheat for machinery.

NOTE: Also “in exchange for“: as, “He gave his old car in exchange for a new one.”

6. Fail in, not from.

Don’t say: He failed from mathematics last year.

Say: He failed in mathematics last year.

7.Full of, not with or from.

Don’t say: The jar was full with (or from) oil.

Say: The jar was full of oil.

NOTE: But “fill” takes “with“: as “He filled the glass with water.”


By T. J. Fitikides

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