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VIII. Gerund after certain nouns with prepositions

Preposition ‘of’

Noun Example
advantage Can you tell us about the advantages of living in a small town?
art He is a good a therapist trained in the art of healing.
chance Is there any chance of getting tickets for tonight?
habit He has the irritating habit of biting his nails.
idea I like the idea of living on a boat.
impression She gives the impression of being very busy
opportunity At least give him the opportunity of explaining what happened.
pleasure She had the pleasure of seeing him look surprised.
pretext He left the party early on the pretext of having work to do.
satisfaction He had the satisfaction of seeing his book become a best-seller.
way I’m not happy with this way of working.

Preposition ‘at’

Noun Example
amazement The old lady couldn’t hide her amazement at seeing the boy’s delight.
astonishment His astonishment at seeing me alive was genuine.
attempt The couple made several unsuccessful attempts at achieving a compromise.
delight The students’ delight at hearing the announced exam results was overwhelming.
dismay She could not hide her dismay at finding her husband at home.
genius He’s a genius at organizing people.
irritation She couldn’t but show her irritation at learning that the letter had not been sent.
pleasure The mother’s pleasure at finding her children safe and sound was immense.
satisfaction The teacher’s satisfaction at giving his students good marks was clearly seen on his face.
shyness The girl’s shyness at being introduced to the great scientist amazed everybody present.
surprise They couldn’t conceal their surprise at seeing us together.


Preposition ‘for’


Noun Example
cause I had no cause for complaining.
excuse His excuse for forgetting her birthday was that he had lost his diary.
genius He had a genius for making people feel at home.
gift He has the gift of making friends easily.
ground What were his grounds for wanting a divorce?
motive There seemed to be no motive for murdering that old man.
opportunity There’ll be plenty of opportunity for relaxing once the work is done.
passion The English have a passion for gardening.
pretext His pretext for being late was lame.
reason I have no particular reason for doubting him.
reputation I’m aware of Mark’s reputation for being late.
talent She showed considerable talent for getting what she wanted.

Preposition ‘in’

Noun + preposition Example
advantage Is there any advantage in getting there early?
delight He takes great delight in proving others wrong.
difficulty I had no difficulty (in) making myself understood.
experience He is a doctor with experience in dealing with patients suffering from stress.
harm There is no harm in window shopping, is there?
pleasure She took pleasure in shocking her parents.
point There is no point in waiting for him.
sense There’s no sense in worrying about it now.
skill What made him remarkable as a photographer was his skill in capturing the moment.

Miscellaneous Prepositions


Noun Example
fantasy about His childhood fantasies about becoming a famous football player came true.
objection to I have no objection to him coming to stay.
obsession with Her obsession with flying frightens her parents.

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