Adobe Illustrator has nice handy shortcuts for paste,

ctrl+f which pastes in front of selected object and

ctrl+b which paste in the back of selected object.

How can I manage this in Inkscape? I tried to check their paste options in preferences but couldn't find similar functionality.

1 Answer 1


There is no direct equivalent to "paste in front" or "paste in back" in Inkscape*.

Instead do Edit > Paste in Place Ctrl+Alt+V. This will paste the copied object at the top of the stack.

After pasting, change the order in the stack using the following shortcuts:

  • Raise to top Home
  • Raise PgUp
  • Lower PgDn
  • Lower to bottom End

If your document contains a lot of objects, this could quickly become confusing and tedious. So, a possible work-around is to Group an object Ctrl+G, then double click the object to enter its group, then Paste in Place Ctrl+Alt+V will take place within the group (on top of the object in that group), and from there End will move it to the bottom of stack within that group. Double clicking outside the group will exit the group. If you don't want the group, you could just ungroup it after you have done this using Ungroup Shift+Ctrl+G.

Alternatively, if you want to see the positions in the stack visually, open the Objects panel (Object > Objects).

Move a selected object up or down the stack, by clicking and dragging it, or use the buttons at the bottom of the panel, or use the shortcuts listed above.

enter image description here

*Note: If these functions are something you'd really like to see implemented in Inkscape, then perhaps add a feature request in the Inkscape forum. Hopefully if the Inkscape devs ever implement it, they might consider calling it "paste behind", rather than Adobe's attempt to butcher the English language by calling it "paste in back".

  • Feature requests should go to inkscape.org/report , not to the forum.
    – Moini
    Feb 15, 2020 at 20:58
  • @Moini - thanks for that, but the inkscape forum is where I found the information. You can read it here: How to report bugs or request new features - presumably to find out if the feature already exists (or the bug exists) before posting it on the gitlab system.
    – Billy Kerr
    Feb 15, 2020 at 21:47
  • Yes, you're right, we put that on that page in the case people want feedback first, or for the more disorganized kind of feature request, which really needs some talking before it makes sense to go into the details. So, your recommendation would need to be 'talk about your feature request in the Inkscape forum' (this will not reach developers). Requests still must be made in the tracker, else nobody will ever implement them.
    – Moini
    Feb 16, 2020 at 0:22
  • Thanks Billy. I was achieving this effect in the same way you have mentioned. However, it is too much work when there are many shapes on the layer. I will try to request in the forum. I think will be very useful function especially with complex designs.
    – Dexter
    Feb 16, 2020 at 6:48
  • @Dexter - did you read the work-around part of my answer?
    – Billy Kerr
    Feb 16, 2020 at 10:16

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