As if the prepositions he inherited were not short enough, Shakespeare complicated matters by contracting them even further. So of becomes a (as in time a day), from becomes fro (now obsolete though we still use it in the idiom to and fro), in becomes i or ‘i (especially before the), before becomes ‘fore and over becomes o’er or even ore. Perhaps because they were both commonly abbreviated to ‘o, the prepositions on and of were frequently confused. Shakespeare sometimes felt the need to dispense with prepositions entirely: In Hamlet, for is omitted before me in “fear me not,” and during is omitted before which in the line “which time she changed snatches of old lauds” (Hamlet 1.3.51, 4.7.149).
The definitions listed in David and Ben Crystal’s Shakespeare’s Words provide, in parentheses, the modern preposition whenever it different from the one Shakespeare uses.
That was an excerpt from David Thatcher’s book Saving Our Prepositions, which appears here with permission from the author. The chapter goes on to list and explain the many prepositions used in Shakespeare.