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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > on the left or to the left    

on the left or to the left


on the left or to the left
Hi everybody!
            I also need your help to clarify a couple of grammatical questions.
When you are describing a room which one is correct: "On the left of the desk there is a wardrobe" or "to the left...". And the second one is the position of frequency adverbs in compound tenses: "He will have already arrived" or "he will already have arrived". Thanks in advance for your help.

26 Jan 2010      


1) "to the left"
2) both are correct

26 Jan 2010     


Hi! As for the room description - if you re talking about the stationary position of something, use ON, because TO implies movement. So if you describe the position of the wardrobe, it s on the left, but if you describe to somebody how to get there, then it s go to the left of the classroom or whatever.
As for the position of the single-word adverb, the second one is correct in written English, so he will already have arrived , whereas in spoken English it should follow the natural flow of thought, so you can t really be as strict as with written....


(from http://www.englishpage.com/verbpage/futureperfect.html - check out adverb placement)
  • You will only have learned a few words.
  • Will you only have learned a few words?

26 Jan 2010     


          Thanks a lot for your help Anitarobi. I thought it had more to do with the use of the preposition "of" :"on the left" "to the left of something" but I wasn t sure about it.

26 Jan 2010     

United States

Aldegunde, you are right about "of".
My car is the one on the left.
My car is to the left of yours.
When you leave here, go to the left.

26 Jan 2010     


Your sentence has of ... it s "to the left of the desk" not on

"To my left stands John" .. John isn t moving

26 Jan 2010