Use of the Prepositions in Attic Prose.—
With the accusative only: ἀνά, εἰς.
With the dative only: ἐν, σύν.
With the genitive only: ἀντί, ἀπό, ἐξ, πρό.
With the accusative and genitive: ἀμφί, διά, κατά, μετά, ὑπέρ.
With accusative, genitive, and dative: ἐπί, παρά, περί, πρός, ὑπό.
a. With the dative are also used in poetry: ἀνά, ἀμφί (also in Hdt.), μετά. ἀπό (ἀπύ), ἐξ (ἐς) take the dative in Arcadian and Cyprian.
b. The genitive is either the genitive proper (of the goal, 1349, 1350, etc.) or the ablatival genitive.
c. The dative is usually the locative or the instrumental, rarely the dative proper (as with ἐπί and πρός of the goal).1676
Ordinary Differences in Meaning.—
|ἀμφί, περί||concerning||round about, near|
|κατά||against||along, over, according to|
|ὑπέρ||above, in behalf of||over, beyond|
|ἐπί||on||on||to, toward, for|
|παρά||from||with, near||to, contrary to|
|πρός||on the side of||at, besides||to, toward|
Certain prepositions are parallel in many uses; e.g. ἀνά and κατά, ἀντί and πρό, ἀπό and ἐκ, ἀμφί and περί, ὑπέρ and περί, ἐπί and πρός, σύν and μετά.1678
The agent is expressed by different prepositions with the genitive:
ὑπό of persons and things personified ( cross1698. 1. N. 1): the normal usage in Attic prose.
παρά: here the agent is viewed as the source. The action is viewed as starting near a person, or on the part of a person.
ἀπό: indirect agent and source (rare) to mark the point of departure of the action. Chiefly in Thuc.
ἐξ: chiefly in poetry and Hdt. In Attic prose of emanation from a source.
πρός: to mark the result as due to the presence (
Means is expressed by διά with the genitive (the normal usage in Attic prose), ἀπό, ἐξ, ἐν, σύν.
Prepositions in composition (chiefly ἀπό, διά, κατά, σύν) may give an idea of completion to the action denoted by the verb ( cross1648).
a. For the usage after compound verbs see cross1382 ff., 1545 ff., 1559.
Herbert Weir Smyth [n.d.], A Greek Grammar for Colleges; Machine readable text [info] [word count] [Smyth].