Prepositions of Location

The most common prepositions of location are

in outside (of)
on between
at beside
by beyond
near in front of
nearby in back of
above behind
below next to
over on top of
under within
up beneath
down underneath
around among
through along
inside against

These prepositions are most commonly followed by “the” and a noun. Both the speaker and the listener likely know which object is being referred to.


The keys are on the table. (We both know which table.)
The post office is next to the bakery. (Not: next to bakery)

Occasionally, prepositions can be used with “a/an.” This usually indicates that the speaker knows of the place, but the listener does not.

For example,

I live by a river. (You probably don’t know which one.)
I live by the river. (You know the river I’m talking about.)