Definition of of preposition from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//əv//
    ; NAmE NAmE//əv//
    ; BrE strong form BrE//ɒv//
    ; NAmE strong form NAmE//ʌv//
    jump to other results
  1. 1  belonging to somebody; relating to somebody a friend of mine the love of a mother for her child the role of the teacher Can't you throw out that old bike of Tommy's? the paintings of Monet When you are talking about everything someone has painted, written, etc., use of. When you are referring to one or more examples of somebody’s work, use by:a painting by Monet
  2. 2  belonging to something; being part of something; relating to something the lid of the box the director of the company a member of the team the result of the debate
  3. 3  coming from a particular background or living in a place a woman of Italian descent the people of Wales
  4. 4  concerning or showing somebody/something a story of passion a photo of my dog a map of India
  5. 5  used to say what somebody/something is, consists of, or contains the city of Dublin the issue of housing a crowd of people a glass of milk
  6. 6  used with measurements and expressions of time, age, etc. 2 kilos of potatoes an increase of 2% a girl of 12 the fourth of July the year of his birth (old-fashioned) We would often have a walk of an evening.
  7. 7  used to show somebody/something belongs to a group, often after some, a few, etc. some of his friends a few of the problems the most famous of all the stars
  8. 8  used to show the position of something/somebody in space or time just north of Detroit at the time of the revolution (North American English) at a quarter of eleven tonight (= 10.45 p.m.)
  9. 9  used after nouns formed from verbs. The noun after ‘of’ can be either the object or the subject of the action. the arrival of the police (= they arrive) criticism of the police (= they are criticized) fear of the dark the howling of the wind
  10. 10  used after some verbs before mentioning somebody/something involved in the action to deprive somebody of something He was cleared of all blame. Think of a number, any number.
  11. 11  used after some adjectives before mentioning somebody/something that a feeling relates to to be proud of something
  12. 12  used to give your opinion of somebody’s behaviour It was kind of you to offer.
  13. 13used when one noun describes a second one Where's that idiot of a boy (= the boy that you think is stupid)?
  14. Word OriginOld English, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch af and German ab, from an Indo-European root shared by Latin ab and Greek apo.Idioms used before a noun to say that something is very surprising I'm surprised that you of all people should say that. used to express anger Of all the nerve!
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: of