Prepositions: time, days of the week, months

Prepositions are words that show the relationship between nouns or pronouns and other elements in a sentence (I come from Croatia). Here are common prepositions used with time:

Prepositions with days of the week: on

We use on before days of the week to indicate a specific day.

  • I have a meeting on Monday.

Prepositions with months: in/during

We use in before months to indicate a specific month:

  • My birthday is in January.

and during before months to specify a period within the month or to say how long something lasts.

  • We went on holiday during July.
  • We have a lot of deadlines during September.

Prepositions with specific times:

We use at before specific times of day (e.g., hours and exact times):

  • The conference starts at 7 pm.
  • We meet at 9 am in front of the hotel.

We also use at with festivals, holidays, and with phrases such as at night, at the weekend:

  • At Christmas, we like to spend time with our family.
  • He runs at the weekend.
  • They work at night and sleep during the day.

We use on before days and dates when referring to specific days.

  • We’re having a picnic on July 4th.
  • They arrive on Monday, February 1st.
  • He is coming on my birthday.

Prepositions with general time:

We use in before general time expressions to indicate a span or length of time:

  • She will return in a few days.
  • We hope we will find a new apartment in a couple of weeks.
  • I’ll do it in a moment.

We also use in with seasons, years and decades:

  • Days are longer in spring.
  • He was born in 1956.
  • She started working in the 90s.

and for before a duration of time to indicate how long something lasts.

  • They traveled to Europe for two weeks.
  • We worked in Spain for six months.

We use during to say when something happens:

  • They studied during the night.
  • They working during their adulthood.

Prepositions with time of day:

We use in before morning, afternoon, evening, or night to indicate a general time of day:

  • We usually have breakfast in the morning.
  • They like to take a walk in the evening.

and at before specific times of the day.

  • He called me at midnight.
  • We usually take a break at noon.

No prepositions:

We don’t use prepositions in front of next/last/every/this:

  • He called me last Monday.
  • We usually take a break every five hours.
  • We are meeting them next Friday.
  • I am buying a new car this week.

Prepositions can significantly affect the meaning of a sentence, so it’s important to choose the right one to convey the intended time reference accurately.