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"He was asked to put the blocks in and take the blocks out of the box." What is an alternative to "put/take" in this sentence, so that the sentence can read "He was asked to [verb] the blocks in and out of the box."

2 Answers 2

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Maybe to move would work?

He was asked to move the blocks in and out of the box.

It feels natural for concrete objects like blocks, but less so for liquids. In that case, 'put' and 'take' don't sound natural either; I'd choose something like to pour.

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  • Would that also work for mass nouns, like water, butter, or rice?
    – user55678
    Commented May 10, 2019 at 12:57
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A good general word is transfer.

He was asked to transfer the blocks in and out of the box.

It has the added benefit of sounding natural with almost any item I can think of—not just blocks. It even works with abstract nouns, as in I transferred from one course to another.

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