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... ...

"Pull up a bit of grass, Barry," said Ludo brightly, patting the ground beside him.

"No thank you, Ludo," said (Barry)Crouch, and there was a bite of impatience in his voice. "I've been looking for you everywhere. The Bulgarians are insisting we add another twelve seats to the Top Box." ...

I think in this context Ludo was asking Barry to sit beside him. The phrase "Pull up a bit of grass" is pretty close to "Pull up a chair". But does Ludo mean that Barry literally pulled up a bit of grass and sit beside him? How should we understand it in this context?

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  • I think you are right, it just convey's Ludo's offer. He or she offers Barry to sit next to him.
    – Cardinal
    Commented Dec 7, 2018 at 5:50
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    Just a side note, @Cardinal, but offer when it has an indirect object (e.g. Barry) does not take an infinitive clause complement (to sit). ...offers Barry a seat
    – TimR
    Commented Dec 7, 2018 at 11:04
  • As a side note, what edition of Harry Potter are you using? I'm wondering if your edition actually has the person's name as Barry, or it was just a typo here, because the person's name is actually Barty.
    – Alex
    Commented Dec 26, 2018 at 19:53

1 Answer 1

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You're exactly right--this is a play on pull up a chair, which is an invitation to sit. There are no chairs in this scenario, so Ludo offers whatever is next to him: the bit of grass.

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  • Thanks! So, does Barry have to pull up a bit of grass literally in response to it?
    – dan
    Commented Dec 7, 2018 at 5:56
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    No, there is no literal pulling of grass. It's a loose metaphor and reads as a very informal invitation to sit, which Crouch refuses.
    – Katy
    Commented Dec 7, 2018 at 6:01
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    To clarify, to "pull up a chair" means to move (pull) a chair over here ("up" in the same sense as to walk up to someone, not literally upwards). It's usually meant in the sense of "get a chair so that we can sit together". Obviously, the grass does not need to be moved, which is part of why this phrase is humorous. Commented Dec 7, 2018 at 16:47

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