I have encountered curtain pulls used as a noun, seemingly to refer to pulled curtains. Is this a noun, is that what it refers to?

The rays of moonlight shone through the gaps in between the curtain pulls, illuminating the boy's dormitory like a shiny diamond ring.

The above passage is from a piece of Harry Potter fan fiction titled "Harry Potter and the Emerald Witch" by Lily Florette.

I feel that it's actually correct language and that I've encountered something like this before, but it still seems a little bit weird. Are there any other cases where pull is used as a noun, other than the usual of referring to the pull of an object, meaning the gravity of an object? With the same meaning as in this instance?

It apparently appears in zipper pull as well, meaning the same thing as zipper I think? Could you say rope pull as well?

And I know this might seem like a very specific and odd question, but it's often very specific and odd things like this which means the difference between being simply good at a language and understanding a language perfectly.

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    Readily found online or in dictionary Jul 24, 2023 at 1:15
  • @DrMoishePippik At first I agreed with you, but when I tried searching for a link to a reputable dictionary definition to comment with, it appears to be less readily found than one might assume. The Google results for "curtain pulls" seem to interpret the phrase as a verb, not a noun, and turn up references like this: ldoceonline.com/dictionary/pull-the-curtains-blinds Jul 24, 2023 at 3:35
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    A zipper pull is that metal tab that you use to zip or unzip a zipper. While the word "zipper" could refer either to this part, or the interconnecting teeth part, or both as a whole, "zipper pull" refers specifically to the tab. Jul 24, 2023 at 3:39
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    @QuackE.Duck - a pull & a tie back are two different things. Jul 24, 2023 at 6:53
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    You should give the source of the passage you are quoting. (Is it Harry Potter?) Jul 24, 2023 at 8:26

1 Answer 1


A curtain pull is a stick or wand attached to the inside edge of a curtain - single or in pairs. Optionally removable or fixed in position.

enter image description here

This is the only image I could find of one in use, single curtain, not a pair as in the question

As a pair, these would hang to the inside edges, usually visible with the curtains in any position other than tightly closed.

Not to be confused with a pull-back, tie-back or hold-back, which are variations in how to hold the curtains open.

enter image description here

Just to complete the set, there's also a 'curtain pull cord' which is a complex string and pulley arrangement enabling you to open or close a pair of curtains by pulling a single cord attached to curtain rail & wall. You really can't see these unless you go poking around behind the curtains, so here's a diagram of the mechanism…

enter image description here

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    Nice illustrations! In that case, I have never actually seen a “curtain pull” - although there is something similar for vertical blinds. Jul 24, 2023 at 14:55
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    I've seen them in 'nice' hotels rather than domestic. Jul 24, 2023 at 15:22

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