A preposition is a word which links a following noun to the rest of the sentence. It shows what relationship the noun has to the sentence. Thus di 'in' shows that kota 'city' is the location in Dia tinggal di kota 'He lives in the city'.
The most important group of prepositions are the locative prepositions. These are di 'in, at, on', which indicates action at the place mention by the following noun ke 'to', which indicates movement towards, and dari 'from’, which indicates movement away. These can combine with a set of three locative pronouns which indicate position in relation to the speaker. These are sini 'here’, situ 'there (not far off)', and sana 'there (far off)'. The combinations pr oduce a nine-way distinction of location and direction, such as sini '(at) here’, ke situ ‘to there (close) , dari sana ‘from there (far) ‘ .
The three locative prepositions also combine with locative nouns, such as atas ‘top’, above’, depan ‘front’ , dalam ‘inside', to indicate place and direction in relation to the following noun as in ke dalam laci ‘into the drawer (literally to the inside of the drawer)'.
The preposition 'to' is sometimes omitted in English even though direction towards something is meant. In Indonesian ke must be used:
Dia melempar pakaiannya ke atas tempat tidur.
He threw his clothes the bed. When the following
noun is a person kepada is used instead of ke:
Saya memberikan buku itu kepada John.
I gave the book to John.
The phrase ke dokter is used for 'to the doctor' in the expression pergi ke dokter 'go to the doctor'.
The preposition 'for' indicating direction is ke in Indonesian: Dia sudah berangkake Jepang. She's left for Japan
In both Indonesian and English there are many other prepositions besides the locative prepositions. One frequently occurring preposition is pada. This is similar in meaning to di and they can sometimes replace each other in the meaning 'in, at, on'. However, while di usually indicates location in physical space, pada
often refers to time. It therefore occurs before words referring to times and dates:
Saya tidak bisa datang pada Hari Senin.
I can't come on Monday.
ada also indicates figurative location:
pada hemat saya
in my opinion
tergantung pada cuaca
it depends on the weather
Some Indonesian prepositions have a variety of equivalents in English, depending on the context. Among these are dengan, terhadap dan atas.
Learners of Indonesian need to be aware that there is not always a one-toone correspondence between a particular Indonesian preposition and a particular English preposition, as the above exercise shows.
In some contexts two or three different prepositions may be possible in
Indonesian. In such cases English may allow only one preposition. Prepositions can follow intransitive verbs, adjectives and some nouns. If an intransitive verb and preposition in Indonesian correspond to a transitive verb in English then no preposition occurs in English
Adverbs in Indonesian are formed from adjectives in a number of ways, including placing preposition dengan before the adjective. No preposition occurs in English:
Dia lari dengan cepat.
She ran quickly.
Some words function as a preposition in one context but not in other contexts. This akan means 'will' and atas means 'top, above' but both also function as prepositions in some situations:
Saya sadar akan bahaya itu
I’m aware of that danger
Buku ini terdiri atas delapan bab
This book consist of eight chapter
In some cases English has a phrasal verb, consisting of a verb + preposition, where Indonesian has a phrasal verb + preposition where Indonesian has a transitive verb followed by an object:
Dia malamar pekerjaan di pabrik itu.
He applied for work at that factory.
Dia mencari jamnya
. She's looking for her watch.
Dia melihat foto-foto saya.
She's looking at my photos.