From what I've read, there are four attested types of adpositions. Prepositions and postpositions are the most common, but circumpositions (discontinuous morphemes that occur around their objects) and inpositions (incorporated into their objects) have been attested. So have ambipositions, which may occur before OR after their objects. http://www.glottopedia.org/index.php/Adposition

But, among natural languages, is there such a thing as an adposition that occurs once before the noun that the prepositional phrase modifies, and once again before its object. e.g. Is there a natural language that says "IN an avocado IN the jar" to say "an avocado in the jar"?

1 Answer 1


In Biblical Hebrew bēn 'between' does something similar, but not exactly the same. For example in Genesis 3:15:

wə=ʔēḇāh ʔ-āšiṯ bēn-ḵā ū=ḇēn hā=ʔiššāh
and=enmity 1sg-put\ipfv between-m.2sg and=between art=woman
And I will put (ipfv has a default future rendering) enmity between you and the woman

Arguably this type of adposition is sooner to be expected with (near-)symmetric relationships like 'between' than ones like 'in'.

  • This seems to be different from what the OP asks for, since ben is not used before “enmity”, which is the noun modified by the prepositional phrase Commented May 9, 2020 at 13:33
  • @ewawe thank you, you are correct. I have edited the answer but will still leave it as it may be useful to others.
    – Keelan
    Commented May 9, 2020 at 13:55

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