prepositions - over

Prepositions - Over

1. Over means above.

Pattern 1: verb + over + noun
The plane flew over our building.
The pictures were hanging over the sofa.

Typical verbs used before over:
be, bend, float, fly, hang, hover, lean, look, shine, watch

Pattern 2: verb + noun + over + noun
She hung the pictures over the sofa.

Typical verbs used with this pattern:
float, fly, hang, hold, install, nail, place, suspend

to hold something over one's head—to control, threaten, or punish someone because of a known fact or misdeed
She knows he was fired from his last job; now she holds that over his head.

2. Over can mean higher than.

Pattern: be + (way) over + noun
The price of that vacation is (way) over our budget.
The water at this end of the pool is over your head.

be over one's head—more than one can understand
I can do simple math, but that problem is way over my head.

3. Over (adverb) can mean more than.

Pattern: over + number + noun
He was driving at over eighty miles an hour.
I have gained over five pounds this month.

4. Over indicates movement above something and to the other side of it.

Pattern 1: verb + over + noun
The children jumped over the puddles on their way to school.
We had to climb over the mountain to get here.

Typical verbs used before over:
cross, climb, drive, get, go, hop, jump, look, run, skate, skip, step, stumble, trip

Pattern 2: verb + noun + over + noun
The young player batted the ball over the fence.
We had fun throwing rocks over the creek.

Typical verbs:
bat, carry, drive, hit, throw
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  • Prepositions - About
  • Prepositions - Above
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  • Prepositions - Ahead Of
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  • Prepositions - Close To
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    An abstract noun is one which is used to mean an idea, experience or quality rather than an object. Thus happiness, intention and shock are abstract nouns whereas, for example, pen, bed and trousers are not.

    There are a number of suffixes which are used particularly frequently in the formation of abstract nouns. Some of the most common are -ment, -ion, -ness and -ity.

    Note: -ment and -ion are usually used to make verbs into abstract nouns whereas -ness and -ity are added to adjectives; -ion sometimes becomes -tion, -sion, -ation or -ition.

    Here are some examples of abstract nouns using those suffixes.

    Less common suffixes associated with abstract nouns are -ship, -dom, -th and -hood.

    Note: -ship and -hood are usually used in combination with other nouns whereas -th combines with an adjective to form an abstract noun and -dom can combine with either a noun or an adjective.

    Here are some examples of abstract nouns using those suffixes.

    There are also a large number of abstract nouns which do not use any suffix at all. Here are some examples of these.


    What is the abstract noun related to each of the following adjectives? All the nouns are formed in ways described on the opposite page although not all are listed opposite.

             Example: affectionate affection
    1. affectionate  5. amused   9. attentive      13. equal
    2. excited         6. graceful     10. happy        14. hopeful
    3. kind              7. original      11. popular     15. resentful
    4. secure           8. stupid        12. weak          16. wise


    Find at least one more noun using each of the suffixes in B and C.


    Which abstract noun on the opposite page is a synonym of each of the following?
    Example: animosity hostility or aggressiveness

    1. animosity          5. substitution        9. vision

    2. astonishment   6. fame                   10. liberty

    3. inquisitiveness  7. decrease           11. fury

    4. fraternity           8. area                   12. wealth


    Complete the following table.


    Which of the words in the list below is being described in the following quotations?
    love           permanence             hope            jealousy           happiness              beauty

    1. ‘ ________  is no more than feeling alone among smiling enemies.’

    2. ‘________ is like coke; something you get as the by-product of making something else.’

    3. ‘________ is the power of being cheerful in circumstances which we know to be desperate.’

    4. ‘________ is a universal migraine.’

    5. ‘The British love ________ more than they love ________ .


    Write your own quotations to describe the following abstract nouns.

    1. freedom          2. friendship         3. life             4. curiosity              5. imagination


    1. affection 5. amusement 9. attentiveness 13. equality
    2. excitement 6. grace 10. happiness 14. hope
    3. kindness 7. originality 11. popularity 15. resentment
    4. security 8. stupidity 12. weakness 16. wisdom


    Some possible answers:

    There are many more possibilities for the B suffixes but not many for the C ones.

    B -ment (un) employment entertainment involvement requirement -ion diversion attraction direction rejection -ness awkwardness foolishness loveliness madness

    -ity brutality familiarity productivity superiority

    C - dom dukedom earldom

    -ship citizenship chairmanship sponsorship championship

    -tb growth wealth stealth -hood babyhood nationhood


    1. hostility or aggressiveness
    2. amazement
    3. curiosity
    4. brotherhood
    5. replacement
    6. stardom
    7. reduction
    8. neighbourhood
    9. sight
    10. freedom
    11. rage
    12. prosperity



    1. Jealousy 2. Happiness 3. Hope 4. Love 5. permanence; beauty

    (‘Coke’ in question 2 means the fuel produced while taking gas from coal. A migraine is a very bad headache.)


    How you answer this question is a matter of your own originality. Here are some ‘real’ quotations about these abstract nouns, however:

    1. Freedom is an indivisible word. If we want to enjoy it, and to fight for it, we must be prepared to extend it to everyone.

    2. Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that gives value to survival.

    3. Life is a foreign language; all men mispronounce it.

    4. Four be the things I’d be better without:

    Love, curiosity, freckles and doubt.

    5. Where there is no imagination, there is no horror.

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