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Some context:

"He spots Nimue and serenades her. Nimue walks away so he chases her, turning his flirt and exchanging names so they aren’t strangers — ladies and gentlemen, meet Arthur. "

Source: R29 Binge Club: Netflix’s Cursed Season 1 Recap

Here's the visual occurrence (~ :43). For more context, as Arthur is chasing after Nimue, he calls out to her and she turns to acknowledge him. He invites her to have an ale, but she declines, saying, "We don't drink with strange men." She tries to walk away again, but her friend pulls her back as Arthur asks for Nimue's name. Nimue introduces herself, and he says, "Well, now we're not strangers."

Flirt as a noun is a person who habitually flirts. How can we make sense of HIS flirt?

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"His flirt" isn't a commonly used idiom to the best of my knowledge.

I'd interpret it as that writer's idiosyncratic expression (or possibly just an error or typo) meaning "his flirtations".

Then, the full phrase could be interpreted to mean either "deflecting his flirtations" (ignoring or avoiding them) or "returning his flirtations" (flirting back). Which one is meant I can't say since I haven't seen the show being described.

  • Do you think using "charm" instead of "flirt" for this sentence is a better version? "He spots Nimue and serenades her. Nimue walks away so he chases her, turning on his/the charm and exchanging names so they aren’t strangers — ladies and gentlemen, meet Arthur. " – Den Allan Aug 13 '20 at 3:15
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I also thought this usage of (his) flirt was strange. As you noted, a flirt is typically the person who flirts.

After a moment, I thought there were a few interpretations. The first one was that flirt is being used to mean the target of flirtation, the person who is being flirted with (= Nimue). I feel like this kind of inversion is uncommon, but not unprecedented. I can't quite think of a different example though, but I'm willing to credit the writer with taking creative liberties here.

Then I would say turn his flirt is a bit of wordplay. Notice that she literally turns to acknowledge him. But turn someone can roughly mean persuade someone.

turn
verb (used with object)
28 to persuade (a person) to change or reorder the course of his or her life.
(Dictionary.com)

turn
transitive verb
6 e : to cause to defect to another side
(M-W)

By the end of the exchange, he persuades her to become friendly.

If instead we assume flirt means flirtation, then another possible interpretation/word play is that turn can also mean transform/convert:

6 b(1) : convert, transform
// turn defeat into victory
(M-W)

You could say he converted his flirtation from a failed invitation into a friendly introduction ("defeat into victory").

Of course, it could also be a mistake. All in all, I wouldn't recommend this kind of usage. For clarity, I would simply stick to the usual meaning of person who habitually flirts.

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