IN front of my house there is a road.

stephenlearner

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi,

Why do you say IN in the following sentence?

IN front of my house there is a road.

IN means inside something; so is the road inside something?

Similarly, please look at this sentence:
I stood in front of my house (outside my house).

Was I inside something?

Thank you very much.
 
  • dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    "Behind", "left of", "right of", "in front of", "in back of", "on top of", "below", "inside (of)", "outside (of)", "under", "over", "next to", "near".

    Those are the normal "X" in English position phrases like "I am X the house" or "The dog is X my suitcase" (a sentence from my Chinese course). Note that English requires words like "of, to, on, in" in some phrases and not others. These are required and can't be swapped: you cannot say "below of" or "in top of".

    To me "in" makes sense: you are "in the area the front of the house faces", or "in the area the back of the house faces". But that "making sense" is only useful for figuring out how the term originated hundreds of years ago. Now it is a fixed phrase.
     

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    I don't think BE speakers say "in back of".
    I ran through a similar list in my own head, going "round the house" before I read your list.
    My list was:
    In front
    On top
    Behind (or round the back)
    Underneath or below
     
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