Adjectives and prepositions

You will learn how to use prepositions with adjectives.


Adjectives and prepositions

Noam Chomsky

Instructions: Read the text about Noam Chomsky. Look at the words in bold.

Avram Noam Chomsky was born on December 7, 1928 in the US. He is a linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, historian, social critic and political activist. He is sometimes described as ‘the father of modern linguistics’. Chomsky is also a major figure in analytic philosophy, and one of the founders of the field of cognitive science. He is Institute Professor Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he has worked since 1955, and is the author of over 100 books on topics such as linguistics, war, politics, and mass media. Ideologically, he aligns with anarcho-syndicalism and libertarian socialism.

Chomsky developed an early interest in anarchism from alternative bookstores in New York City. At the age of sixteen he began studies at the University of Pennsylvania, taking courses in linguists, mathematics, and philosophy. He married fellow linguist Carol Schatz in 1949. From 1951 to 1955 he was appointed to Harvard University’s Society of Fellows, where he developed the theory of transformational grammar for which he was awarded his doctorate in 1955. That year he began teaching at MIT, in 1957 emerging as a significant figure in the field of linguistics for his landmark work Syntactic Structures, which laid the basis for the scientific study of language, while from 1958 to 1959 he was a National Science Foundation fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study. He is credited as the creator or co-creator of the universal grammar theory, the generative grammar theory, the Chomsky hierarchy, and the minimalist program. Chomsky also played a pivotal role in the decline of behaviorism, being particularly critical of the work of B. F. Skinner.

Getting started: Chomsky and the New Left

Instructions: Keep reading about Chomsky.

Associated with the New Left, Chomsky was arrested multiple times for his activism and placed on President Richard Nixon’s Enemies List. While expanding his work in linguistics over subsequent decades, he also became involved in the Linguistics Wars. In collaboration with Edward S. Herman, Chomsky later co-wrote Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media, an analysis articulating the propaganda model of media criticism, and worked to expose the Indonesian occupation of East Timor. However, his defense of unconditional freedom of speech –including for Holocaust deniers- generated significant controversy in the Faurisson affair of the early 1980s. Following his retirement from active teaching, he has continued his vocal political activism, including opposing the War on Terror and supporting the Occupy movement.

Chomsky is widely recognized as a paradigm shifter who helped spark a major revolution in the human sciences, contributing to the development of a new cognitive framework for the study of language and the mind. In addition to his continued scholarly research, he remains a leading critic of US foreign policy, neoliberalism and contemporary state capitalism, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and mainstream news media.

Chomsky and the US

Instructions: Choose T (true) or F (false) for the following sentences.

Chomsky was arrested multiple times for his activism.

He is the only author of The Political Economy of the Mass Media.

He is retired from teaching.

He has contributed to the development of a new cognitive framework.

He hates criticizing US foreign policy and neoliberalism.

Let’s learn how to use prepositions with adjectives.

Instructions: Look at the following information about adjectives and prepositions.

Adjectives are describing words that tell us more and give us extra information about something, for example:


Noam Chomsky is a significant figure in the field of linguistics


This statement explains that Noam Chomsky is a figure in the field of linguistics, and the adjective "significant" informs us about the importance that this figure has in the linguistics field. In other words, it provides us with additional information about what we already knew.

On the other hand, the prepositions are short words (on, in, to) that usually stand in front of nouns (sometimes also in front of gerund verbs). A noun represents a person, place, thing, or idea. In our example, the noun is the word “figure”, and the preposition is the word “in”.

When we use adjectives with prepositions some adjectives go with certain prepositions. There is no explicit grammatical rule that allows us to know which preposition goes with which adjective, this is learned as a result of interacting with multiple texts in English language, with practice and exercise of reading and writing in this language.

However, here are some examples (which are not exhaustive), of + preposition . Remember that there may be many other combinations of adjectives + prepositions that are not covered here.

    Preposition “at”

  • • Noam Chomsky is quite brilliant at Linguistics, and very good at politics, but he is lousy at Chemistry
  • Preposition “for”

  • • Participating in politics is good for your country
  • • Noam Chomsky is famous for his work in linguistics field
  • • We are ready for the cognitive new framework classroom
  • Preposition “of”

  • • Chomsky is aware of the ideology of the ruling elite
  • • He’s perfectly capable of teaching his knowledge.
  • • Professor Chomsky is very fond of giving lectures.
  • Preposition “with”

  • • He is very pleased with democracy’s progress in Latin America
  • • And he’s not still angry with their detractors
  • • But he’s very bored with the blindness of American political system
  • Preposition “to”

  • • Noam Chomsky is committed to the scientific truth
  • • He has been responsible to his family’s wellness
  • Preposition “about”

  • • We are excited about his new book
  • • I´m worried about the exam of generative grammar theory
  • When the complement that follows an adjective is a verb, it is used in gerund “ing”. For example:

  • • he`s interested in teaching
  • • I´m good at working


Instructions: Order the sentences.

different from Henryhis brotheris very
Michaelisbullsafraid of
isA tuxedosuitan elegantsimilar to
isfamous forWhatyour country
himselfbeJamesproud ofshould
havinga newveryEllieexcited aboutIphoneis
Thissimilar toisminecar


The best option

Instructions: Choose the best option for each sentence.

  1. My best friend is interested in / on rock’n’roll.
  2. Is David pleased for / with his new house?
  3. Michelle is extremely good at / for languages.
  4. Who is Harry married with / to?
  5. American cheese is very different from / about Mexican cheese.
  6. I am not afraid of / by anything.
  7. I am very good at / with dancing.
done Check


Adjectives with prepositions

Instructions: Fill in the gaps with the most suitable preposition.

  1. The US is famous its wonderful landscapes.
  2. My father is very proud my sister, she studies at Harvard.
  3. Mary isn't really interested getting married.
  4. I am very pleased my exam results.
  5. My husband is very bad music.
  6. Vicky is married Joseph.
  7. We are very excited the party.
done Check