"Venomous Tentacula seeds," said George. "We need them for the Skiving Snackboxes but they're a Class C Non-Tradeable Substance so we've been having a bit of trouble getting hold of them."

"Ten Galleons the lot, then, Dung?" said Fred.

"Wiv all the trouble I went to to get 'em?" said Mundungus, his saggy, bloodshot eyes stretching even wider. "I'm sorry, lads, but I'm not taking a Knut under twenty."

"Dung likes his little joke," Fred said to Harry.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix

I think "I'm not taking a Knut under twenty" here means I would only accept your money if you paid me above twenty Galleons. But I'm not sure if my understanding is correct. Does the sentence content any idiom?


Yes, your understanding of the sentence is correct. In Harry Potter, a Knut is the smallest form of currency. When Mundungus says "I'm not taking a Knut under twenty [Galleons]", he does mean that he will go absolutely no lower than 20 Galleons.

It's the same as saying "I want 20 dollars and not a penny less," just with fictional currency instead of a real one.


It's an inclusive range, not an exclusive one. "A Knut under twenty" means 20 Galleons minus a Knut. Thus it means that he will not accept 19.99 Galleons (I forget how much a Knut comes to exactly, but it's essentially the penny of the wizarding world); the minimum price he will accept is 20 Galleons.

It's not an idiom; the words are all literal.

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