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Learning English | prepositions after verbs

English grammar common mistakes | prepositions following verbs

The company agreed for the pay rise. (incorrect)
The company agreed to the pay rise. (correct)

The man apologised for standing on my foot. (correct)
The man apologised to stand on my foot. (incorrect)

Some verbs must be followed by a specific preposition. Sometimes more than one preposition is possible and sometimes there is a difference in meaning depending on which preposition is used:

Agree. We say you agree with a person or an idea:
I totally agree with the governments decision.

But if you give your consent to something, we use agree to:
Both sides in the war have agreed to the ceasefire.

Apologise. We say you apologise to someone but you apologise for something:
Mum made me go and apologise to our neighbours for breaking their window.

Find out, know, learn, teach, think. These verbs can all be followed by about:
I need to find out about student visas for the UK.
He didn't know anything about the problem until I told him.
This semester I'm learning about macro economics at university.
Our teacher is trying to teach us about life in the olden days.

Think can be followed by about or of to talk about opinions or future plans:
What do you think about / of the new computer lab? (opinion)
I'm thinking about / of going back to university next year to finish my degree. (future plan)

Look. We use look at when we fix our eyes on something and look for when we mean searching for something:
Oh look at the sunset! Isn't it beautiful?
I've looked for my homework everywhere. Have you seen it?

See more common grammar mistakes

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