Is this sentence correct?Many of the captives died by suffication, disease, and infection.   or replacying "by" with "from"?

Expert Answers
wannam eNotes educator| Certified Educator
I would suggest that you replace "by" with "from" or "of" in this sentence. The word "by" usually means "in proximity to." The captives didn't die near these deceases, they died of or from them. The word "from" is used to "indicate the source, cause, or agent" in a specific case. Since you are indicating the suffocation, disease, and infection were the causes of death in the captives, you will want to use the word from to indicate the cause and effect relationship between the two groups. (On a side note: you may want to double check your spelling on the word suffocation. I'm assuming this was a typo, but double check it on your work).
hilahmarca eNotes educator| Certified Educator

First of all, you spelled "suffication" incorrectly. It's spelled "suffocation". "Of" is the appropriate preposition to use here. "By" has to do with proximity, while "from" is most often used to indicate original locations or starting points. One use for the preposition "of" is to indicate cause. In the case of your sentence, the cause is death.