Some prepositional phrases

A prepositional phrase is a group of words introduced by a preposition. There are quite a few prepositional phrases in English and these set phrases are often used with specific verbs.

Prepositional phrases usually go at the end of sentences. Some of them also go at the beginning of sentences. In this lesson we will learn the usage of some common prepositional phrases.

By heart

To learn something by heart is to memorize it.

The teacher asked us to learn the poem by heart.

At a loss

They sold the car at a loss.

When you are at a loss for words, you are unable to speak.

I was so confused that I was at a loss for words.

From my perspective / from my point of view / from where I stand

All of these phrases mean ‘in my opinion’.

A: What do you think about their decision to withdraw support?

B: From my point of view, it is disastrous.

‘From where I stand, it appears that we are going to lose.’

By the way and by the by

These phrases are used when you want to add information.

Tom: What do you think of this cellphone? Is it any good?

Bill: This is the most popular and, by the way, the cheapest model we have in stock.

This phrase is also used when the speaker wants to open a new subject in a casual manner.

Peter: Oh, by the way, Mark, do you still have that leather jacket you borrowed from me?

Mark: Let me check. I thought I gave it back.

For better or (for) worse / for better, for worse

If something happens for better or worse, it happens whether its results are good or bad. Note that this phrase is mainly used in a marriage ceremony.