This is part two of the Phrasal Verbs series. And for today our verb is pluck.
1. Pluck at something:
to pull something quickly several times with your fingers, especially because you are nervous or to attract attention.
- Kitty’s hands plucked at her black cotton skirt. (Longman)
- The little boy plucked at her sleeve. (Longman)
- The kid plucked at my clothes and wouldn’t go away.
- The boy plucked at Adam’s sleeve.
- He plucked at her sleeve to try and get her attention.
- I felt a small hand plucking at my jacket.
- The child kept plucking at his mother’s sleeve.
2. Pluck something out of the air:
to say or suggest a number, name etc that you have just thought of, without thinking about it carefully.
I’m plucking a figure out of the air here, but let’s say it’ll cost about $15,000. (Longman)
3. Pluck up the courage:
to force yourself to be brave and do something you are afraid of doing.
He finally plucked up enough courage to ask her out. (Longman)
- He can’t pluck up the courage to leave home.
- I shall have to pluck up courage and speak to her about it.
- It took me about two hours to pluck up courage to call.
- It took me ages to summon/pluck up the courage to ask for a promotion.
- But why not pluck up the courage to do what you’ve always wanted?
For the flashcards: Click here
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Keep learning, keep improving!