"I feel like it's the place to be tonight, you know what I mean?" -- Harry Potter
Hagrid writes to inform the trio that Aragog has died. Ron and Hermione have their apparition test, and Harry makes a Euphoria potion in a class with just Slughorn, Ernie and Draco, after which he tries to corner Slughorn, but fails. Hermione passes her test and convinces Harry to take Felix Felicis to get Slughorn’s memory; Harry does, and goes down to Hagrid’s, meeting and inviting Slughorn along the way. There they bury Aragog together, Slughorn and Hagrid become drunk, and Harry convinces Slughorn to give him the memory.
Calendar and Dates
Interesting facts and notes
There were only three of them in Potions that afternoon: Harry, Ernie, and Draco Malfoy.
This implies that the birthdays of every other sixth-year Potions student in the class fall on or before 21 April, since the absences today are presumably all due to the Apparition test. It also implies that Ernie and Draco have birthdays between 21 April and 1 September.
Euphoria, I take it?
Slughorn's expertise is actually being reinforced in an understated way, here; he can recognize the potion by its smell and appearance, before reeling off his evaluation of Harry's work.
I do thank you for taking the time, Pomona
Contrast Slughorn's courtesy with Professor Sprout with Lockhart's arrogance four years earlier.
I'll be reporting that man, he's more concerned about litter than about proper security if you ask me...
At least Slughorn has his priorities in order (not surprising in a man who spent a year on the run and imitated an armchair to avoid Death Eaters).
Had a house-elf taste every bottle
As Harry immediately reflects upon hearing this, this says a great deal about Slughorn's attitude toward house-elves.
your friend Rupert
We've been hearing a lot about this at the Lexicon. Since Slughorn is shown throughout the book as having difficulty remembering Ron's name, apart from the fact that it begins with an 'R', this isn't a typo. Yes, we know the name of the actor cast as Ron in the films.
Exceptional character moments
Professor Slughorn reveals (while intoxicated) that he wouldn't give Dumbledore his memory concerning horcruxes because he was afraid Voldemort would find out he told someone and because he was ashamed of what he said.
Slughorn also displays that Slythern's can use kindness as well as cunning to achieve what they want. He is kind to Professor Sprout when she is helping him collect leaves. He also does not report that Harry is out of the castle. After getting the Acromantula venom, he stays to talk with Harry and Hagrid.
"You didn't meet him, Hermione. Believe me, being dead will have improved him a lot."
"Had a house-elf taste every bottle after what happened to your poor friend Rupert."
"To friendship! To generosity! To ten Galleons a hair!"
"'...terrible,' Hagrid grunted and his great shaggy head rolled sideways on to his arm and he fell asleep, snoring deeply. 'Sorry,' said Slughorn with a hiccough. 'Can't carry a tune to save my life.'"