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preposition British English pronunciation: of /əv/  strong British English pronunciation: of /ɒv/
  1. 1
    used for saying who or what has a particular feature, aspect, or quality

    We were impressed by the size of the building.

    the colour of the sky

    I don't remember the name of the street.

    the smell of unwashed clothes

  2. 2
    saying which specific thing
    1. a.
      used for saying which specific thing belonging to a more general type you are referring to

      I had a feeling of duty towards him.

      She seemed to like the idea of having children.

      the month of April

      the city of Rome

      Todd has the annoying habit of questioning everything I say.

    2. b.
      used for giving a specific age, amount, value etc

      She met Charles at the age of 20.

      She was a young girl of no more than 13.

      Lynn earns a salary of thirty thousand pounds a year.

      Teachers have been asking for a pay rise of 4 per cent.

  3. 3
    saying who or what does something
    1. a.
      used after nouns that refer to actions for saying who or what does the action

      the shouts of excited children

      This is clearly the work of more than one person.

      the arrival of our train

    2. b.
      used after nouns that refer to actions for saying who or what is affected by the action

      the baptism of children

      The removal of the machine parts took several hours.

  4. 4
    used for saying who something belongs to

    the property of the residents

    They ended up living in the house of Jeanne's oldest brother.

  5. 5
    concerning or showing someone or something

    She had a photograph of him beside her bed.

    It was a tale of war and bravery.

    a history of Russia

    Jerry kept thinking of the last time they'd met.

    I reminded her of her duty to her family.

  6. 6
    used for saying what something is part of

    He moved to the far side of the bed.

    a pain in the back of my head

    She sat on the edge of her chair.

    The roof of the church was damaged.

  7. 7
    containing or consisting of something
    1. a.
      used for saying what something contains

      He handed her a glass of water.

      a box of chocolates

      a bag of nuts

    2. b.
      used for saying what type of thing is in a particular quantity or group

      a kilo of rice

      millions of insects

      a collection of poems

      a swarm of bees

      a succession of temporary jobs

      a pair of sunglasses

    3. c.
      used for talking about individual pieces of a substance

      a grain of sugar/sand

      a slice of cake

      a piece of wood/ice

      a sheet of paper

    4. d.
      used for saying what group a particular person or thing is from

      She's one of my best friends.

      Three of us went on holiday together.

      Several of the flats cannot even be lived in.

  8. 8
    used after names and titles for talking about the relationship between a person and a place or organization

    He listed the kings and queens of England.

    the President of Syria

    the treasurer of the club

  9. 9
    used for saying what substance is used for making something

    a suit of lightweight wool

    He was wearing a shirt of soft pink cotton.

    instruments made of stainless steel

  10. 10
    used for giving dates and periods of time

    the 27th of November

    the last month of the year

  11. 11
    used after some adjectives for saying a person or thing that a feeling is directed towards

    You should be ashamed of yourself!

    I'm tired of their constant arguing.

    Maya ought to be proud of him.

  12. 12
    used for saying what type of person or thing has been described by another noun

    He was an angel of a child.

    We had a hell of a time trying to find a parking space.

  13. 13
    used for saying which person behaves in a particular way in a situation
    it was nice/sweet/stupid etc of someone:

    It was nice of you to help me.

    It was stupid of me to think they would agree.

  14. 14
    used for saying what causes something

    the beneficial effects of red wine

    He died of lung cancer.

    As a result of pollution, many species have died out.

  15. 15
    used for mentioning a quality that someone or something has

    He was a man of great charm.

    The research will be of great interest to many people.

    Our conversation was of little importance.

  16. 16
    used for saying who wrote a book or play, produced a work of art etc

    the wonderful paintings of Picasso

    the plays of Harold Pinter

  17. 17
    used for describing when something happens in relation to something else

    She didn't invite him till the evening of the party.

    Eva's father died the day of his 70th birthday.

  18. 18
    American used in saying the time to mean a particular number of minutes before the hour

    It's twenty of two (=1.40).

    It's a quarter of nine (=8.45).

  19. 19
    used for saying who has a particular relationship with someone else

    Lori is the daughter of my father's sister.

    He was having an affair with the wife of a diplomat.

    a good friend of mine

  20. 20
    used for saying what type of activity or situation lasts for a particular period of time

    We had weeks of problems with the new computer system.

    Twelve years of peace were followed by two years of war.

  21. 21
    used for saying the period of time for which someone or something is the biggest, best, most important etc

    Reynolds was named businessman of the year in 1998.

    the most popular film of the summer

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