The man * the flute without blowing it.

If you use play, it implies he's emitting sounds, so it doesn't work here. Is there a verb you can use in this particular context?

The man * an invisible flute while walking.

Here, again, same thing. We can't use the verb played, because it's an imaginary flute.

1 Answer 1


You use fingers to play the flute, so you can say "fingering the flute".

Practice without making a sound by fingering on a pencil.

The "buttons" on a flute are called "keys" so you can use "keying".

The teacher demonstrated by keying the flute without playing it.

In the second example you would use "playing"! The flute is imaginary, and the playing is imaginary. Of course no sound is produced, but you would still say "He is playing an imaginary flute". Though you could also say that he is miming flute playing.

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