At, On, In expressing place A We use At with a building or institution when mean the normal purpose the building is used for . My friends are at the theatre ( = watching a play ) My sister is fifteen. She`s still at school (=attending school )
We use at for someone’s home. I had a cup of coffee at Alice`s ( house / flat ) We also use at with a social event. We met at Adam`s party , didn`t we ? Jo spent the afternoon at races.
B On is two-dimensional. We use it for a surface . Don’t leave your glass on the floor . There were lots of pictures on the walls. We use for position on a line such as a river, road, or frontier. Paris is on the Seine . The house is right on the main road, so it’s a bit noisy. Kirishima street is on fifth avenue. Note We use on to say that we are carrying something with us. I'm afraid I haven`t got any money on/with me.
C In is three-dimensional. I had five pounds in my pocket. Who`s that girl in the green dress? There were three people in the waiting room. Compare in and at with buildings. It was cold in the library. ( = inside the building ) We were at the library.( = using the library )
D In general we use in for a country or town. My sister works in Birmingham. Tom is in Canada at the moment With a small place we can use at or in. we used to live at/in a place called Menston.
We can use at with a town or city if we see it as a point on a journey. I had to change trains at Birmingham. We use on with a small island and in with a large island. we spent a week on Corfu. The company has a factory in Ireland.
ECompare the use of at, on, and in in these phrases at at 52 Grove Road at your house at the station at home / work / school at the seaside at the back at the end at the front of the queue on on 42nd Street (US) on the third floor on the platform on the page on the screen on the island on the beach/ coast on the right/left on the back of in in Spain/Bristol. in Grove Road in the room /lesson in a book/newspaper in the photo/picture in an envelope in the country in the middle in the distance in the back of the car in a queue/ line / row
More details abut preposition of place A Above, Over, Below, and Under Above and over have similar meaning. There was a clock above/over the entrance. My bedroom is above/over the kitchen, so I get all the cooking smells.
When something covers an area, we prefer over. Thick black smoke hangs over the town . Whentwo things are in contact, we use over and not above. Someone had spread a sheet over the body.
We also use over for movement to the other side. The horse jumped over the wall. Did the ball go over the goal line? Somehow we had to get over/across the river.
We prefer over before a number. There are well over fifty thousand people in the stadium. But we use above for a measurement that we think of as vertical. Temperatures will rise above thirty degrees. The land here is only a couple of meters above sea level.
Below is the opposite of above. The treasure was buried twelve meters belowground. Temperatures will fall below freezing. The opposite of over is under. Come under the umbrella, or you`ll get wet. The town lies under a thick black cloud of smoke.
We use under rather than below with ages and with sums of money. You have to be under 15 to buy a half-price ticket. The winner will collect just under 20 million . With most other kinds of measurement, either below or under is possible. The party`s support has fallen to below/under20 percent.