Ending a sentence with a preposition
As far as possible, avoid ending a sentence with a preposition. Note that this is not a serious error. In fact, several good writers have happily defied this rule. Still, if you end your sentences with a preposition you may offend some of your readers.
Study the examples given below.
- This is something I have not thought of.
Here the word of is a preposition and the sentence ends with it.
The preposition should go before the noun or pronoun which acts as its object. Therefore, putting it at the end of the sentence is considered incorrect.
Another example is given below.
- Susie is a person I cannot put up with.
In this case, by restructuring the sentence you can remove that preposition from the end. Write:
- I cannot put up with Susie.
Sometimes restructuring may make the sentence sound contrived. In this case, it is better to end it with a preposition.
For example, the sentence ‘This is something of which I have not thought’ is more correct than ‘This is something I have not thought of’.
However, the first sentence sounds much less natural than the second sentence. In this case, ending the sentence with the preposition is the best option.
Sometimes it is possible to rewrite the sentence without the preposition.
- This is a problem I have not thought of. (Informal)
- This is a problem of which I have not thought. (Very formal)
- This is a problem I have not considered. (Neither formal nor informal)
- Susie is one person I cannot tolerate. (Better than ‘Susie is one person I cannot put up with’.)