Verbs can have more than one preposition


It is not unusual for a verb to appear with more than one preposition in a sentence. This is often the case with verbs such as diskutieren, reden, sprechen:

Ich rede mit Klaus über meinen Urlaub. I talk to Klaus about my holiday.

Note that mit usually refers to a person, while über to a topic, plan, idea etc. Another verb that often appears with more than one preposition is sich bewerben:

Er bewirbt sich bei Ferrari um einen Job als Automechaniker. He applies to Ferrari for a job as a car mechanic.

Prepositions can affect meaning

There are also a few verbs that change their meaning, depending on the preposition they take, such as sich freuen + auf/über:

Sie freut sich auf ihren Geburtstag. She is looking forward to her birthday.
Sie freut sich über ihre Geschenke. She is pleased about her presents.

Another example is the verb bestehen: bestehen auf ‘insist on’, bestehen aus ‘consist of’.