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 English Grammar for ESL learners 


Set phrases or groups of words, introduced by the preposition 'OUT'

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

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

Preposition Prepositional phrase Meaning Example
OUT Out of bounds Beyond the limits.
A prohibited area.
Paul sent the ball out of bounds.
The ballroom is out of bounds.
Out of breath To breathe with difficulty. Julia ran all the way home and arrived out of breath.
Out of character Not typical of a person; unusual behaviour. Andy is acting out of character today.
Out of control Unmanageable The children were totally out of control.
Out of danger No longer at risk. The patient is out of danger now.
Out of hand Uncontrollable. We must deal with the situation before it gets out of hand.
Out of luck Unlucky; unfortunate. You’re out of luck today. We don't have any left.
Out of necessity Because it's necessary. Alex has two jobs out of necessity.
Out of order Does not work. The phone is out of order.
Out of the question Inconceivable; cannot be envisaged. Private medical care is out of the question.
Out of place Inappropriate. Jeans are out of place at a formal dinner.
Out of practice Have not been exercising a skill. I can’t play the piano any more. I’m out of practice.
Out of print No longer available from publisher I’m afraid the book is out of print.
Out of reach Too high to reach. The jug was out of reach on the top shelf.
Out of season No longer in season. Strawberries are out of season now.
Out of sight No longer visible. She waved until he was out of sight.
Out of sorts Feeling unwell or upset. Paula looks out of sorts today.
Out of touch Not aware of events; not in contact. I’ve been travelling for six months so I’m completely out of touch with everything.
Out of tune Not the right notes. It’s awful. She’s singing out of tune.
Out of turn Not in the correct order. Please wait. Don’t speak out of turn.
Out of work Not have a job. Many people are out of work in this area.

More Prepositional Phrases: 

See also: Prepositions

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Please note that British English spelling is used on this website.

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