a 'great conduit' for < passing / conveying > knowledge

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Couch Tomato

Senior Member
Russian & Dutch
Language probably developed in East Africa, around 100,00 years ago. In the main, speech was used for friendly interaction, and was an important tool in power struggles. Information-swapping was probably not an important original role - contrary to the views of philosopher John Locke, who spoke of language as a 'great conduit' for (18) ..... knowledge.

18 A dispatching B conveying C teaching D passing


(Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English 3 - Student's Book with Answers)

Could someone explain why "passing" doesn't work here? The key says that "conveying" is the correct answer, but doesn't "passing" also work, perhaps figuratively? Can't a conduit pass things?

Thank you in advance.
 
  • Beryl from Northallerton

    Senior Member
    British English
    As an aside, 'a great conduit for knowledge' would work as is, I suspect.

    What is a conduit, and what does it do? Well, it's like a pipe, and of the four options available, 'conveying' is the only one that happen passively.
     
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