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English Grammar


Set phrases or groups of words introduced by the preposition 'on'.

Prepositional phrases are set phrases or groups of words introduced by a preposition.

Below are some examples of commonly-used propositional phrases with 'ON', with their meaning and a sentence showing how they are used.

Prepositional phrase Meaning Example
On account of Because of / owing to He couldn't speak. He was hoarse on account of a sore throat.
On no account Not for any reason On no account will I agree to the proposal.
On average Typically / normally It takes 5 minutes, on average, to walk to the station.
On behalf of As a spokesperson for someone else I’m making this request on behalf of all the members.
On display Shown in a public place for all to see His paintings are on display at the moment.
On edge Feel tense or nervous My nerves are constantly on edge these days.
On foot Walking My car broke down so I had to go there on foot.
On good terms Have a friendly relationship I’m on good terms with all my colleagues.
On the increase Becoming larger in amount Sales are on the increase this week.
On leave Absent from work with permission Emma is on maternity leave at the moment.
On occasion Sometimes, but not often The boss has, on occasion, lost his temper.
On one's own Alone, without any help. Carla prepared the meal on her own.
On your mind Think about something The problem was on his mind all day.
On purpose Intentionally The boy banged the door on purpose.
On principle Based on your beliefs He voted against the proposal on principle.
On second thoughts After reconsideration On second thoughts she decided to refuse the offer.
On strike Stop working to protest against or demand something The employees are on strike today. They want better working conditions.
On target As predicted or planned The new hotel is on target to open in May.
On time At the time agreed All employees must arrive on time every morning.
On a whim As a result of a sudden impulse or idea. We booked a trip to Venise on a whim.

More Prepositional Phrases: 

See also: Prepositions

Try these online exercises:  at-on-in at-for-from-in into-onto-off-over-up

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