Prepositions - Off

Prepositions - Off

1. Off indicates movement from one place to another.

Pattern 1: verb + off + noun
The car ran off the road.
We got off the train in New Orleans.

Verbs used with this pattern:
blow, come, dive, drive, fall, get, go, hop, jump, limp, move, roll, run, slide, slip, walk

Expression:
to be off (adverb)—to leave
It's late, so we must be off.

Pattern 2: verb + noun + off + noun
They shoveled the snow off the driveway.

Verbs used with this pattern:
blow, brush, clean, clear, drive, get, move, pull, push, roll, run, scrape, shove, shovel, slide, slip, sweep, take, wash

2. Off can indicate separation.

Pattern: verb + off + noun
She cut off her beautiful long hair.

Verbs commonly used with this meaning:
break, chop, cut, pick, pull, saw, send, shave, take, tear, throw

3. Off means connected to or not far from.

Pattern: be + off + noun
Our street is off Main Street.

Typical nouns after off:
beach, coast, highway, island, road, street, turnpike

4. Off can indicate behavior that is not as usual or no longer true.

Pattern 1: be/go + off + 0 noun
The children are off school today.
I'm glad your cousin finally went off drugs.

Nouns commonly used with this meaning:
alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, duty, school, work

Pattern 2: be/go + off + one’s + noun
She went off her diet again.

Typical nouns:
diet, medication, medicine, pills

Expressions:
to be off course—to be going (or thinking) in the wrong direction
We got lost, and were off course for about three hours.
They got off course while doing the research, and wasted a lot of time.
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    Prepositions
    Different kinds of adverbs go in different positions in a clause. Here are some general rules (Note: these rules apply both to one-word adverbs and to adverb phrases of two or more words.)

    Verb and object
    We do not usually put adverbs between a verb and its object.

    [...adverb + verb + object] [verb + adverb + object]
    I very much like my job. (NOT I like very much-my job.)
    [...verb + object + adverb]
    She speaks English well. (NOT She speaks well English.)

    Initial, mid and end position

    There are three normal positions for adverbs:
    a. initial position (at the beginning of a clause)
    - Yesterday morning something very strange happened.
    b. mid-position (with the verb - for the exact position)
    - My brother completely forgot my birthday.
    c. end position (at the end of a clause)
    - What are you doing tomorrow?
    Most adverb phrases (adverbs of two or more words) cannot go in mid-position. Compare:
    - He got dressed quickly. He quickly got dressed.
    - (Quickly can go in end or mid-position.)
    - He got dressed in a hurry. (NOT He in a hurry got dressed.)
    - (In a hurry cannot go in mid-position.)

    What goes where?
    a. initial position
    - Connecting adverbs (which join a clause to what came before). Time adverbs can also go here .
    - However, not everybody agreed. (connecting adverb)
    - Tomorrow I've got a meeting in Cardiff, (time adverb)

    b. mid-position
    - Focusing adverbs (which emphasize one part of the clause); adverbs of certainty and completeness; adverbs of indefinite frequency; some adverbs of manner.
    - He's been everywhere — he's even been to Antarctica, (focusing adverb)
    - It will probably rain this evening, (certainty)
    - I've almost finished painting the house, (completeness)
    - My boss often travels to America, (indefinite frequency)
    - He quickly got dressed, (manner)

    c. end-position

    Adverbs of manner (how), place (where) and time (when) most often go in end-position.
    - She brushed her hair slowly. (manner)
    - The children are playing upstairs. (place)
    - I phoned Alex this morning. (time)
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