Difference Wiki

Article vs. Preposition: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sumera Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Updated on October 4, 2023
An "Article" is a word that introduces a noun (like "a" or "the"), while a "Preposition" shows the relationship between a noun or pronoun and other words (like "in" or "under").

Key Differences

Articles and Prepositions are foundational elements in English grammar. While an "Article" is a word that introduces and modifies a noun, a "Preposition" typically links nouns, pronouns, or phrases to other words within a sentence.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
In the English language, there are definite and indefinite articles. The definite article is "the," and the indefinite articles are "a" and "an." Prepositions, on the other hand, are words like "in," "on," "under," "between," and "with" that indicate a relationship or position in space, time, or manner.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
Imagine a sentence like "The cat is on the table." In this example, "The" is an Article that specifies a particular cat. "On" is a Preposition that shows the position of the cat relative to the table.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
The role of an Article in a sentence is relatively straightforward since English primarily uses only three articles. However, the role of a Preposition can be more complex due to the variety of prepositions available and the nuances they can introduce.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023
Using Articles and Prepositions correctly can significantly influence the meaning of a sentence. For example, changing the Preposition in "She is in the room" to "She is by the room" shifts the meaning, just as changing the Article in "A book" to "The book" alters its specificity.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Definition

Word that introduces and modifies a noun.
Word that relates a noun or pronoun to another word.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Function

Specifies or introduces a noun.
Indicates relationships of position, time, or manner.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Examples

The, a, an.
In, on, under, between, with.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Count

Limited to three in English.
Numerous and can convey varied relationships.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Usage

Directly before a noun.
Can be placed in various positions in a sentence.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023
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Article and Preposition Definitions

Article

A determiner that points to a particular noun or class of nouns.
She is an expert in her field.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Preposition

A term that shows position, direction, time, or manner in a sentence.
They sat by the river.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Article

A modifier that introduces a noun in a sentence.
I saw a movie yesterday.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Preposition

A grammatical term that expresses spatial, temporal, or other relationships.
They met before noon.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Article

A grammatical element that helps clarify the reference of a noun.
She read the book you recommended.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Preposition

A word that links and relates the object of the preposition to the rest of the sentence.
She is fond of chocolate.
Sara Rehman
Oct 04, 2023

Article

An individual thing or element of a class; a particular object or item
An article of clothing.
Articles of food.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

A word that indicates the relationship between a noun or pronoun and other words in a sentence.
The book is on the table.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Article

A particular section or item of a series in a written document, as in a contract, constitution, or treaty.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

A word or phrase placed typically before a substantive and indicating the relation of that substantive to a verb, an adjective, or another substantive, as English at, by, with, from, and in regard to.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A nonfictional literary composition that forms an independent part of a publication, as of a newspaper or magazine.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

To position or place in position in advance
Artillery that was prepositioned at strategic points in the desert.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

The part of speech used to indicate nouns and to specify their application.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

Any of a class of non-inflecting words typically employed to connect a following noun or a pronoun, in an adjectival or adverbial sense, with some other word: a particle used with a noun or pronoun (in English always in the objective case) to make a phrase limiting some other word.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

Any of the words belonging to this part of speech. In English, the indefinite articles are a and an and the definite article is the.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

An adposition.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A particular part or subject; a specific matter or point.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

(obsolete) A proposition; an exposition; a discourse.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

To bind by articles set forth in a contract, such as one of apprenticeship.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

To place in a location before some other event occurs.
It is important to preposition the material before turning on the machine.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A piece of nonfictional writing such as a story, report, opinion piece, or entry in a newspaper, magazine, journal, dictionary, encyclopedia, etc.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

A word employed to connect a noun or a pronoun, in an adjectival or adverbial sense, with some other word; a particle used with a noun or pronoun (in English always in the objective case) to make a phrase limiting some other word; - so called because usually placed before the word with which it is phrased; as, a bridge of iron; he comes from town; it is good for food; he escaped by running.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

An object, a member of a group or class.
An article of clothing
A sales article
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

A proposition; an exposition; a discourse.
He made a long preposition and oration.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(grammar) A part of speech that indicates, specifies and limits a noun (a, an, or the in English). In some languages the article may appear as an ending (e.g. definite article in Swedish) or there may be none (e.g. Russian, Pashto).
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

A function word that combines with a noun or pronoun or noun phrase to form a prepositional phrase that can have an adverbial or adjectival relation to some other word
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A section of a legal document, bylaws, etc. or, in the plural, the entire document seen as a collection of these.
The Articles of War are a set of regulations...to govern the conduct of...military...forces
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

(linguistics) the placing of one linguistic element before another (as placing a modifier before the word it modifies in a sentence or placing an affix before the base to which it is attached)
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A genuine article.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Preposition

A word preceding a noun or pronoun and expressing a relation to another word or element.
The cat jumped over the fence.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Article

A part or segment of something joined to other parts, or, in combination, forming a structured set.
Each of the chelicerae is composed of two articles, forming a powerful pincer.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A person; an individual.
A shrewd article
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(archaic) A wench.
She's a prime article (whip slang), she's a devilish good piece, a hell of a goer.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(dated) Subject matter; concern.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(dated) A distinct part.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(obsolete) A precise point in time; a moment.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(transitive) To bind by articles of apprenticeship.
To article an apprentice to a mechanic
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(obsolete) To accuse or charge by an exhibition of articles or accusations.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

To formulate in articles; to set forth in distinct particulars.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A distinct portion of an instrument, discourse, literary work, or any other writing, consisting of two or more particulars, or treating of various topics; as, an article in the Constitution. Hence: A clause in a contract, system of regulations, treaty, or the like; a term, condition, or stipulation in a contract; a concise statement; as, articles of agreement.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A literary composition, forming an independent portion of a magazine, newspaper, or cyclopedia.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

Subject; matter; concern; distinct.
A very great revolution that happened in this article of good breeding.
This last article will hardly be believed.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A distinct part.
The articles which compose the blood.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A particular one of various things; as, an article of merchandise; salt is a necessary article.
They would fight not for articles of faith, but for articles of food.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

Precise point of time; moment.
This fatal news coming to Hick's Hall upon the article of my Lord Russell's trial, was said to have had no little influence on the jury and all the bench to his prejudice.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

One of the three words, a, an, the, used before nouns to limit or define their application. A (or an) is called the indefinite article, the the definite article.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

One of the segments of an articulated appendage.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

To formulate in articles; to set forth in distinct particulars.
If all his errors and follies were articled against him, the man would seem vicious and miserable.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

To accuse or charge by an exhibition of articles.
He shall be articled against in the high court of admiralty.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

To bind by articles of covenant or stipulation; as, to article an apprentice to a mechanic.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

To agree by articles; to stipulate; to bargain; to covenant.
Then he articled with her that he should go away when he pleased.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

Nonfictional prose forming an independent part of a publication
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

One of a class of artifacts;
An article of clothing
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A separate section of a legal document (as a statute or contract or will)
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

(grammar) a determiner that may indicate the specificity of reference of a noun phrase
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

Bind by a contract; especially for a training period
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 07, 2023

Article

A word that specifies or introduces a noun.
The sun is shining brightly.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

Article

A word used before nouns to specify grammatical definiteness.
I'd like an apple, please.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

FAQs

What's the main role of a Preposition?

A Preposition indicates the relationship between a noun or pronoun and other words in a sentence.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Can a word ever function as both an Article and a Preposition?

No, an Article and a Preposition have distinct functions and are not interchangeable.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Why is it essential to use articles correctly in English?

Using the right Article helps clarify the specificity or generality of a noun, impacting the sentence's meaning.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Can I omit an Article from a sentence?

Sometimes, yes. Some nouns don't require an Article, especially in certain contexts or when discussing generalities.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

What is the primary function of an Article?

An Article introduces and modifies a noun in a sentence.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Can prepositions also link verbs or adjectives?

Indirectly, yes. Prepositions link to nouns or pronouns, but these can modify or relate to verbs or adjectives.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Are there fixed rules for preposition usage?

While there are guidelines, Preposition usage often depends on idiomatic expressions and fixed phrases.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

How many types of articles are there in English?

In English, there are two types: the definite Article ("the") and the indefinite articles ("a" and "an").
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Is it ever appropriate to drop the Article in English?

In some cases, yes. For instance, we might say "She's in school" instead of "She's in the school."
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

Do all languages have articles like English?

No, not all languages have Articles or use them in the same way English does.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Why are some phrases called "prepositional phrases"?

They're called that because they begin with a Preposition and include its object, often a noun or pronoun.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

How can one determine the correct preposition to use in a sentence?

Choosing the right Preposition requires understanding its meaning and the relationship it denotes in context.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Why are prepositions considered challenging in English?

Prepositions can have multiple meanings and uses, making them tricky to master, especially for non-native speakers.
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

What happens if I use the wrong Article in a sentence?

Using the wrong Article might make a sentence sound unnatural or change its intended meaning.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Are prepositions always followed by nouns or pronouns?

Typically, yes. A Preposition usually introduces a prepositional phrase with a noun or pronoun as its object.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

Can a sentence have multiple prepositions?

Absolutely. E.g., "He's in the room by the window on the left."
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023

How can I improve my usage of Articles and Prepositions?

Regular practice, reading, and listening to native speakers can help improve your usage of Articles and Prepositions.
Harlon Moss
Oct 04, 2023

Why are there indefinite and definite articles?

Indefinite articles introduce non-specific nouns, while the definite Article points to specific or known nouns.
Aimie Carlson
Oct 04, 2023

Can "an" be used before any noun?

No, "an" is used before nouns that start with a vowel sound, while "a" is used before nouns that start with a consonant sound.
Sawaira Riaz
Oct 04, 2023

Can prepositions be used at the end of sentences?

Yes, especially in informal English or in questions. E.g., "Who are you waiting for?"
Janet White
Oct 04, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.

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