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What’s the Difference Between On and Upon?

Key Difference: In English, there are two words “On” and “Upon” which represent the same meaning “On the top of” or “Immediately after“. You need to know that, upon is more formal than the term “on.” Usually, these kinds of prepositions are used to build a sentence. Let’s see the proper explanations and meanings of these terms with various examples. Let’s get into this post and see the contradictions between them.

On: My mobile fell on the road.
Upon: Once upon a time, there is a child playing in the garden.

On Vs Upon



Indicates the top position.

The term “On” usually indicates the location, and time, to introduce an object. Every people use this word to indicate the top position. Let’s see an example to make it simple. She never comes on time. From this statement, we might understand that someone will never come on time. We will give you one more example. The Baby’s clothes are on the first floor. From this sample sentence, we might understand that the children’s attire is located on the first floor.

How Do We Spell the Word On?

Phonetics pronunciation of the word On is ɒn. And this word sounds like the following audio.


Syllables are phonological building blocks of words. It divides the words into parts that can help you read words more accurately. Let’s see how to split the word affect using syllables. Learning syllables can also help you to spell words correctly. 

  • The word “On” has only one syllable
  • It cannot be divided.

Using “On” in sentences:

  • You can see that picture on the page 24.
  • Photos hang on the wall.
  • He placed the box on the table.
  • My wallet is on the table.
  • I usually go to the gym on Monday.



Immediately After

The word “Upon” is more formal than the word “on.” It indicates that something is very close or has arrived. Let’s see an example to make it clear. The terrorist was suddenly upon us. From this sentence, we might understand that, the terrorist suddenly pointed to us. Let’s see one more example to make it easy for you. She played for hour upon hour. From this statement, we might understand that she played for many hours.

How Do We Spell the Word Upon?

Phonetics pronunciation of the word Upon is əˈpɒn. And this word sounds like the following audio.


Syllabification refers to the process of division of words into smaller parts. It is commonly known as syllables. With its help, you can easily read and spell the word accurately. Here, you will see how to split the word “Upon” by syllables.

  • The word “Upon” has two syllables
  • It can be divided as “Up-on.”

Using “Upon” in sentences:

  • We will look upon you as family members.
  • The cat jumped upon the wall.
  • Keep watching upon his records.
  • It depends upon the system.
  • The coins fell upon the floor.

Compare: On Vs Upon

This table will show you the contradiction between the words On and Upon.

DefinitionIt refers to the top position. It refers to something immediately upon another thing.
SynonymsOn the top of, endlesslyHigh, beyond, over, overhead
AntonymsAway fromOutside of, clear of
EtymologyOld English on, an, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch aan and German an, from an Indo-European root shared by Greek ana .Middle English: from up + on, suggested by Old Norse upp á .
ExamplesHe stands on the top of the building.
The book shop is on the left.
She is on the way home.
He lives on a farm.
She carefully placed the book upon the table.
It will be seated upon the tree.
Your exam result depends upon it.
My things fell upon the floor.
On Vs Upon

Resources and References:

Resources: Cambridge Dictionary (On, Upon), Merriam-Webster (On, Upon), Collins Dictionary (On, Upon), (On, Upon)


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