when do we use the preposition like or as


use like or as

asked Jan 24 '13 at 09:09 teresa bee mansogo New member

3 answers


Use "as" before a clause and "like" when there is no clause. Examples: He looked like an elephant. He hopped as he walked down the street. He looked as if he could jump for joy. You probably see "like" used similarly as in "He looked like he could jump for joy." However, if you keep the distinction mentioned first, you won't go wrong.

link comment answered Jan 24 '13 at 16:52 Sandy Contributor

It's a pretty big topic.  Why don't you check out the following link which provides a useful summary of how to use these prepositions, and if you have more specific questions afterwards, please post them.



link comment answered Jan 24 '13 at 09:21 Shawn Mooney Expert

I don't think it is correct to use "as" followed by a noun only, rather than a clause, except in the situations mentioned at the end of the explication I linked to above, none of which relates to qualitative comparisons. "He acted as a bull in a china shop" just sounds plain wrong to me. I would definitely be interested in hearing other opinions, and also more details and examples from Tolley about variations in register and dialect. I am untroubled by like-plus-clause, but as-plus-noun for a qualitative comparison is beyond the pale. Convince me. :)

link comment edited Jan 25 '13 at 08:09 Shawn Mooney Expert

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