Difference Between Prepositions and Conjunctions

Key Difference – Prepositions vs Conjunctions
 

The function of prepositions and conjunctions can often be very confusing to the non-native speakers of English although there is a key difference between these two types. A preposition refers to a word that is used with a noun or pronoun to show place, position, time or method. A preposition is usually placed in front of a noun. On the other hand, a conjunction refers to a word that creates a connection between words, clauses or phrases. This is the key difference between a preposition and a conjunction. Through this article let us examine the difference with examples.

What are Prepositions?

A preposition refers to a word that is used with a noun or pronoun to show place, position, time or method. The main function of a preposition is to highlight the relationship that a particular word has to some other word. A preposition is placed in front of a noun. Here are some examples that will highlight the positioning and the function of a preposition.

The boy from Japan

The book near the vase

The house behind the playground

People at the market square

The letters to John

The lake by the castle

In each example notice how each preposition is placed in front of the nouns to show a connection to the first noun. For example, let us take the first example, ‘the boy from Japan’. In this example the preposition ‘from’ has been used to emphasize the relationship between the two nouns boy and Japan.

In the English language, there are a number of prepositions that can be used in different situations to generate different meanings. Some examples for prepositions are about, above, around, at, against, among, along, below, behind, before, beside, beneath by, being, between, during, down, except, from, for inside, into, in, near, off, of, on, to, towards, under, upon, until, with.

Difference Between Prepositions and Conjunctions

Letters to John

What are Conjunctions?

A conjunction refers to a word that creates a connection between words, clauses or phrases. Let us have a look at some examples.

His response to the performance was honest but painful.

I wanted to tell the truth because I hated lying to my parents.

Unless you finish the work, I cannot let you leave.

We will practice for the event until you arrive.

As you can observe, the main function of conjunctions is to connect two things. In the English language, there are many examples for conjunctions. Some are and, but, either/or, neither/nor, not only, because, although, until, while, unless, since, or. There are different types of conjunctions. They are,

  1. Coordinate conjunctions
  2. Correlative conjunctions
  3. Subordinate conjunctions

Coordinate conjunctions usually connect two nouns, adjectives or even adverbs. And, but are some of the common conjunctions that fall into this category. Correlative conjunctions are used to connect contrasting ideas or even ideas that weigh equally. This is why mostly conjunctions such as either/or, neither/nor are used. Subordinate conjunctions are used to connect subordinate clauses. Here conjunction such as because, as, unless, until can be used.

Key Difference - Prepositions vs Conjunctions

Unless you finish the work, I cannot let you leave. 

What is the difference between Prepositions and Conjunctions?

Definitions of Prepositions and Conjunctions:

Prepositions: A preposition refers to a word that is used with a noun or pronoun to show place, position, time or method.

Conjunctions: A conjunction refers to a word that creates a connection between words, clauses or phrases.

Main Function of Prepositions and Conjunctions:

Prepositions: The main function is to highlight the place, position, time or method of two nouns.

Conjunctions: The main function is to connect nouns, phrases or clauses.

Examples of Prepositions and Conjunctions:

Prepositions: Some examples are about, above, around, at, against, among, along, below, behind, before, beside, beneath by, being, between, during, down, except, from, for inside, into , in, near, off, of, on, to, towards, under, upon, until, with.

Conjunctions: Some examples are and, but, either/or, neither/nor, not only, because, although, until, while, unless, since, or.

Types:

Prepositions: Prepositions can be categorized as prepositions of place, agent, position, time, direction, or method.

Conjunctions: Conjunctions can be categorized as Coordinate conjunctions, Correlative conjunctions, and subordinate conjunctions.

 

Image Courtesy:

1. “Par avion air mail” by Kristoferb at English Wikipedia. [CC BY-SA 3.0] via Commons

2. Boy doing homework (4596604619) By Randen Pederson from Superior (Study of Study) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons