Terms of the Harry Potter novels

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This article describes key terms from the seven volumes of the Harry Potter novel series by Joanne K. Rowling .

In addition to the terms used in the German edition, the expression is given in brackets as it is used in the English-language original edition of the novels for the term described in each case. If this information is missing, the designation is the same in both editions.

In addition to this article, there are four others that describe elements of the Harry Potter world in more detail:


Wizards and witches

Magicians (wizards) and witches (witches) inhabit the same world as the non-magical people, called in the Harry Potter novels for centuries Muggle . Many wizards and witches show an amazing ignorance of the Muggle world. Occasionally this is even the case if they live in the neighborhood of Muggles. This is not how many can handle Muggle money and equipment. Some find it incredible how mankind can get by without magic, and attribute inventions like electricity to human helplessness. Furthermore, wizards and witches who did not grow up in the company of Muggles often wear extremely adventurous combinations of various Muggle clothing when they move around in the Muggle world. Usually they wear capes, often in the flashiest colors and not infrequently the clichéd witch hat.

Pure blood

As a pure-blood (Pure Blood) a wizard is called, has only wizards and witches as ancestors. Many members of the wizarding community who describe themselves as purebloods hold racist views of wholly or partially Muggle-born wizards and witches. Some of the pureblood families refer to the Weasleys as traitors to the blood because the family has no class and is Muggle-friendly. These views are particularly widespread among the followers of Lord Voldemort and the members of the House of Slytherin . They consider Muggle-born wizards to be inferior and feel they shouldn't be taught in wizarding schools like Hogwarts . In the sixth volume it turns out that there are few real purebloods. The supporters of Lord Voldemort, the most powerful black wizard of his time, do not (probably) know that he himself is not a pure blood, and see the statements explaining this fact as infamous slander. Inbreeding prevails in many “pure-blood” families . Almost all of the ancient wizarding families are related, such as the Black , Malfoy, and Weasley families .


A half -blood is a magically gifted person whose one parent is magically gifted and whose other is a Muggle or a Muggle-born wizard or a Muggle-born witch. This applies e.g. B. for Severus Snape , Lord Voldemort and Harry Potter .


Mudblood (Mudblood) is a very insulting and derogatory term for magical people whose both parents are Muggles. On Hermione Granger and Lily Potter , this is true, Draco Malfoy and other Slytherins insult them accordingly. The Durmstrang Institute does not accept any witches or wizards whom it considers to be mudbloods. The politically correct names for a mudblood are "Muggleborn" and "Muggleborn".


An Animagus (Pl. Animagi) is a magician who can transform himself into a certain animal and back again at will. He doesn't need a wand to do this. To become an Animagus, a magician has to go through a long procedure. Finally, it is checked and registered by the Ministry of Magic. But there are also unregistered Animagi. An animagus can only change its shape into one and the same animal. The animal shape depends on the personality of the magician and cannot be freely chosen.

The last statement is not, however, absolutely true. Sirius Black is known to have said that he and James Potter also developed their animal forms on the basis of the consideration that these figures had to be large enough to control the werewolf Remus Lupine if necessary and to repel or otherwise fight them.

Well-known Animagi and their animal figures are Sirius Black ( dog ), Peter Pettigrew ( rat ), James Potter ( deer ), Rita Skeeter ( beetle ) and Minerva McGonagall ( cat ). The latter is the only known, registered Animagus. All the others have not registered as Animagus.


An auror (Pl. Aurors) is a magician who fights the dark arts on behalf of the Ministry of Magic . To take up this profession, a wizard needs a very good Hogwarts degree. A candidate must have a minimum of five UTZ Exceeded Expectations in Defense Against the Dark Arts, Transformation, Charms, Potions, and any other subject. After graduation, a three-year training at the Auror School follows. There you will be taught subjects such as camouflage and masking, transformation, magic potions and concealment and detection .

Well-known Aurors are Nymphadora Tonks and Kingsley Shacklebolt . Well-known out-of-service Aurors are Alice and Frank Longbottom , Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody and Rufus Scrimgeour .

Even Harry Potter has expressed interest to become an Auror after finishing school. According to J. K. Rowling's testimony to the unanswered questions in Volume 7, Potter later became head of the Auror's Office.


A Metamorphmagus (Pl. Metamorphmagi) is a magician who can change his appearance willingly and without further aids. This ability is innate and cannot be learned.

One such is Nymphadora Tonks , an auror from the Ministry of Magic and a member of the Order of the Phoenix . She likes to change her hairstyle, grow horrible noses for fun and also appear as a nice old lady for camouflage. Her son Teddy, who changed his hair color several times shortly after he was born, inherited his mother's abilities.

If a Metamorphmagus experiences a severe shock, or experiences great sadness or grief, it cannot transform for a while.


A Parselmouth (Parselmouth) masters the snake language Parselongue (Parseltongue) . This ability is extremely rare and innate. They are feared by the majority of the wizarding community, as most of the Parseltongue were black magicians .

Even before Harry Potter learns about the world of wizards, he communicates with a snake on a trip to the zoo. However, he only realizes his ability to speak properly to snakes later. He acquired this ability through the bond that arose between him and Voldemort in his attempted murder. After the Horcrux in Harry is destroyed in Volume 7 , the connection and the ability to speak Parseltongue are lost.

Well-known Parseltongue mouths were or are Harry Potter , Lord Voldemort , Salazar Slytherin and the members of the Gaunt family . Less known was Herpo the Evil, the first known breeder of a basilisk . In the seventh book , Ron Weasley succeeds in imitating Harry's sibilance and opening the Chamber of Secrets. With the basilisk teeth fetched there, Hermione can destroy the fourth horcrux, Helga Hufflepuff's cup .


A squib is a person who comes from a wizarding family but has no magical abilities. Squibs are used by some pure-blooded viewed as magicians not worthy to live in the magical world. Therefore, they are mostly sent to non-magic schools to integrate them into Muggle society. The bad position of Squibs in the wizarding world can also be recognized by the pseudo-courses with which supposedly magic can be learned.

Neville Longbottom's family has long been concerned that he would be a squib. They had therefore provoked him again and again until he finally showed magical talent and after a fall from a window (his uncle held him by his feet out of the window and accidentally let go), he jumped around like a ball. Just like muggles, Squibs can not see Dementors .

Well-known Squibs are Argus Filch and Arabella Figg .


A Muggle (Muggles) is a man with no magical ability, who was not born in the world of wizards and witches. A Muggle can not see many magical beings, such as dementors . Muggles are portrayed in all books as particularly helpless and disadvantaged, their technique as a ridiculous substitute for magic, which is nevertheless admired by some magicians.

The Harry Potter novels popularized the pre-existing English word muggle . J. K. Rowling stated that their use was derived from mug . Mug describes someone who is easily "ripped off". Rowling added the ending " le " as a belittling to make the word appear less degrading.


An inferius (Pl. Inferi; Latin inferi "inhabitant of the underworld") is the body of a dead person who moves through the magic of an evil magician and carries out his orders. The description of the Inferi is similar to that of a zombie . Lord Voldemort uses Inferi to spread terror and to guard important objects. Inferi guard the “wrong” Horcrux (Volume 6). Inferi can be driven away with fire . The correct Latin form would be “Inferus”, by the way. “Infer i us” is a comparative and would mean: “worse than, inferior, inferior”.

magical creatures

Numerous magical beings, such as centaurs , goblins , house-elves, giant spiders, giants , thestrals, unicorns , griffins , dragons, water people, and basilisks populate the world of Harry Potter. The most important are in the two main articles



In addition to real plants, some plants with magical properties play an important role in the world of Harry Potter.


The Mandrake (Mandrake) is also called Mandragora. Above ground, it is a tufted, inconspicuous plant that looks green and a little purple. If you pull it out of the ground, the shape of a screaming, ugly, blotchy-light green baby reveals itself instead of the roots. The screaming of adult mandrakes is fatal to humans and leads to unconsciousness even in smaller specimens .

When fully grown, a strong antidote can be obtained from chopped mandrakes , which can reverse curses or transformations of people.

In the second volume, the basilisk from the Chamber of Secrets petrifies some students, Nick the Almost Headless and Mrs. Norris, the caretaker's cat, who are then resuscitated by the mandrake potion.

Mandrakes were not invented by JK Rowling, and their roots sometimes actually show human-like shapes. They have been used as magic and healing remedies since ancient times.

Whomping Willow

The Whomping Willow is an aggressive tree that hides a secret passage to the Howling Hut at Hogwarts . To get into the passage, you have to paralyze the tree by touching a certain cartilage on the trunk.

The willow was planted the year Remus Lupine came to Hogwarts . If he turned into a werewolf under the full moon , he fled to the Howling Hut to protect the other residents of the castle from his curse.

In the second volume, Harry Potter and Ron Weasley land in the tree with a flying Ford Anglia . In the third volume, Harry's nimbus is destroyed by the willow in 2000 when he loses consciousness and falls off a broomstick during a Quidditch game. Finally he meets his godfather Sirius Black in front of the tree in the same volume .

Devil's noose

A devil 's snare is a creeper that will strangle anyone who gets too close. It thrives particularly well in dark and humid places and therefore detests warmth.

In the first volume, Pomona Sprout plants a devil's noose as protection for the philosopher's stone. Harry Potter and Ron Weasley are almost strangled by her trying to save the stone, but Hermione Granger conjures up flames (with light you can escape a devil's noose) and thus causes the plant to let go of her friends. An offshoot of a devil's noose is used in the fifth volume as a murder weapon for an attack on Broderick Bode.

Types of wood of the wands

On their website J. K. Rowling gives interesting information about the assignment of the wood types of the wands. Harry's staff consists for example of holly, engl. holly, which sounds like holy ("holy") in English . Voldemort's staff is made of yew , a tree whose leaves and seeds are poisonous. The wands of Harry, Ron and Hermione are also made of the wood of the tree that, according to the New Celtic monthly count, belongs to their respective birthdays.

Magical items


The deluminator (lat. Lumen, luminis = light; in the 1st volume "Ausmacher", English Put-Outer; in the fifth volume "Entleuchter", English Unlighter ) is a device that absorbs the light from light sources such as B. catches street lights and thus ensures darkness. It resembles a lighter and is an invention of Albus Dumbledore . He uses the deluminator in the first volume in Privet Drive when he drops Harry in front of the Dursleys' door .

The members of the Order of the Phoenix later use it to be able to enter their headquarters at Grimmauldplatz more inconspicuously. In the seventh volume, Dumbledore bequeaths him to Ron Weasley . It turns out that it can also be used as a kind of tracking device. It activates when Hermione, after Ron has left the two of them, talks to Harry about Ron by name again for the first time.


The pensieve ( Pensieve, pun on pensive (thoughtful), but literally pen sieve ) is a vessel in which magicians can store and contemplate their thoughts in the form of lines of thought . Harry uses the pensieve, which is in a closet in the headmaster's office, several times, both with and without the permission of the headmaster Albus Dumbledore , to delve into the memories of others. In volume 6 the pensieve plays an important role, because with its help Dumbledore can show Harry scenes from the past of Lord Voldemort . In the seventh volume, Harry sees the memoirs of Severus Snape in a thread of thoughts .

Remind me

A Remembrall is a glass ball filled with white mist. If the owner forgets something and touches the reminder me, the fog turns red.

Neville Longbottom's Remember Me is indirectly responsible for the fact that Harry Potter is accepted as a seeker on the Quidditch team of his house in the first year of school , because Minerva McGonagall happens to observe Harry's flying skills on his broom when he tries to chase away the memory me stolen from Draco Malfoy .


A foe-glass looks like a mirror that shows enemies who are nearby. If you can see them clearly, you are in danger. (Quoted from the book "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire": "I'm only really in trouble when I see the white in their eyes.") Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody has such an enemy glass.

deathly Hallows

The three deathly hallows

The Deathly Hallows are three powerful magical artifacts, which are referred to for the first time in the seventh and final volume with this generic term.

  • The Elder Wand (Elder Wand) is a wand that is more powerful than any other. However, the special powers of the staff can only be used by its master. If he is defeated (not necessarily killed), the conqueror becomes the new master of the staff. If a master dies undefeated, the staff can no longer have another master. The English word elder can be translated as " elder " (the stick comes from an "elder tree", ie an elder bush), on the other hand elder can also mean "older" or "the elder" or used as a title (" elder ") become. Other names of the Elder Wand are Deathstick or Wand of Destiny .
  • The Resurrection Stone is a black gemstone with the power to bring the dead back to the world in a state between living body and spirit. But these can only be seen by those who use the ring in which the stone is set.
  • The Invisibility Cloak is the most powerful invisibility cloak of all, which can also withstand spells, never loses its effect and does not age. For centuries the Invisibility Cloak was passed on within the family from Ignotus Peverell to Ignotus' last living descendant, Harry Potter, while keeping its secret or not knowing it. He not only hides the rightful owner, but also other people. So the magic cloak hid Harry, Ron and Hermione often during their school years, but also Professor Snape in the third grade.

The Deathly Hallows is mentioned in a well-known children's book from the wizarding world ( The Tales of Beedle the Bard ), which tells the "story of three brothers" who tried to trick death. As a reward, each of the three brothers wishes for one of the shrines, but can only delay the time until his death.

In Albus Dumbledore's opinion, the sanctuaries were likely made by three gifted wizards, the Peverell brothers. Since Harry is a descendant of the youngest Peverell Ignotus through his father James , he inherits the Invisibility Cloak. Lord Voldemort is a descendant of the middle brother, Cadmus. He stole the Gaunts' ring from his uncle Morfin, whose stone is the Resurrection Stone. Out of this he makes one of his horcruxes (ignorant of the fairy tale) . The elder wand was not inherited but acquired through battle. After it got into the hands of the wand maker Gregorowitsch in an unclear way , it was stolen from him by Gellert Grindelwald . Dumbledore defeated Grindelwald in a legendary duel and thus came into possession of the staff. Draco Malfoy disarmed Dumbledore on the Hogwarts Astronomy Tower and thus became owner and master of the staff, but did not know about its special magic power and never held the staff in his hands. The Elder Wand was placed in Dumbledore's grave. Voldemort desecrated the grave and stole the elder wand. Harry Potter disarmed Draco Malfoy in battle at Malfoy Manor, and the Elder Wand recognized Harry as his master from then on. Lord Voldemort could not use the wand with the desired intent to kill Harry, because the wand only obeyed the black magician to a limited extent. The Elder Wand obeyed Harry's orders in the final argument.

After Harry used the Elder Wand to repair his own broken wand, he put the Elder wand back in Dumbledore's grave. If Harry died undefeated, the power of the Elder Wand would also be broken.

By the end of Volume 7, all three sanctuaries were rightfully owned by Harry Potter. He lost the stone in the Forbidden Forest. After defeating Voldemort, he decided not to look for it anymore. Harry only kept the Invisibility Cloak.


A Horcrux (Horcrux) is an object or a living being in which a sorcerer uses dark magic to banish part of his soul in order to escape death. In order to split his soul, the magician has to commit murder as this is against nature and tears the soul apart. However, such a division makes the soul unstable. A Horcrux (including the part of the soul that is in it) can only be destroyed by means that destroy something irretrievably. These remedies include, among other things, the poison of a basilisk and weapons treated with it that were made by goblins - for example the sword Godric Gryffindor , which absorbs the poison of the basilisk killed in the second volume - and the demon fire . Therefore, the destruction of a Horcrux is final. Someone who has hidden part of his soul in a Horcrux can only die or be killed once the Horcrux has been destroyed. In Volume 7 it is mentioned that the division of souls can also be reversed if the affected magician shows repentance . However, the pain felt can be so severe that it leads to death.

Lord Voldemort acquired knowledge of Horcruxes as a pupil from black magic books and from Horace Slughorn , whom he asked for details. He was particularly interested in Slughorn's opinion on the multiple divisions of the soul. Voldemort originally wanted to make six Horcruxes, for which he had to split his soul into seven parts. Voldemort was not aware that a seventh Horcrux existed in Harry.

The seven horcruxes are:

Tom Riddle's diary
The book was made by Voldemort, then Tom Riddle, as his first Horcrux in his youth. Some time before his disappearance he gave it to Lucius Malfoy with orders to keep it safe. Malfoy, who did not know the meaning of the diary, feared after Voldemort's apparent destruction that he would be exposed as a Death Eater through its possession . Shortly before the start of Harry's second year at Flourish & Blotts , he manages to slip the diary unnoticed into Ginny Weasley . With that he is rid of the relic on the one hand and hopes on the other hand to bring Arthur Weasley and Dumbledore into disrepute. As a result, the soul part of Voldemort takes possession of Ginny, lets her open the Chamber of Secrets and ultimately wants to find new life with her help. In the finale of Volume 2, Harry's diary is pierced with a basilisk tooth. Harry only learns that a Horcrux was destroyed in this way in Volume 6, as well as that Voldemort's anger at Lucius Malfoy at the loss was cruel.
Vorlost Gaunt's ring
This is an heirloom of Cadmus Peverell and is described as a gold ring with a black sparkling stone on which the Peverell coat of arms is engraved. The latter is the Resurrection Stone . Vorlost Gaunt, Voldemort's grandfather, once wore the ring proudly to show off his Peverell descent. After his death he was bequeathed to his only son Morfin Gaunt, whom Tom Riddle visited in his youth. After he had stolen the ring and made a Horcrux out of it, he hid it again in the now abandoned Gaunts house in Little Hangleton and protected it with several spells. Dumbledore later succeeds in locating the ring. Before the beginning of volume 6 he destroys it with Godric Gryffindor's sword , but is badly wounded beforehand when he tries to use the ring himself in a weak moment because of a heavy curse.
Salazar Slytherin's locket
The locket is an heirloom and was last worn by Riddle's mother Merope Gaunt , who sold it shortly before Tom Riddle's birth to one of the owners of the black magic items shop Borgin and Burkes for the rather small amount of ten galleons. A wealthy collector (Hepzibah Smith) bought it there for a fortune. Tom Riddle murdered the old woman and took the locket. He turned it into a horcrux and hid it in a cave by the sea, the entrance of which is temporarily flooded and difficult to reach. When Albus Dumbledore and Harry Potter try to get the locket in volume 6, they only find a copy with a reference to the mysterious RAB - as it turns out in volume 7, it is Sirius Black's brother Regulus who had the real Horcrux years earlier has stolen. The locket is stolen from the Black House by Mundungus Fletcher and confiscated by Dolores Umbridge , who owns it. It is later taken from her by Hermione Granger with the help of Harry and destroyed by Ron Weasley in the Forest of Dean with Gryffindor's sword.
Helga Hufflepuff's drinking goblet
This is described as small and gold-colored, with two handles and an engraved badger, the heraldic animal of the Hufflepuffs. Tom Riddle also stole it from Hepzibah Smith after causing her death. The mug is stolen by Harry and his friends from the Lestranges dungeon in the Gringotts Bank and finally destroyed in the Chamber of Secrets by Hermione Granger with the help of Ron Weasley with a basilisk tooth.
Rowena Ravenclaw's tiara
This is Voldemort's penultimate, deliberately created Horcrux. It was stolen from the Hogwarts founder by her daughter Helena Ravenclaw while she was still alive and hidden in a tree cave in Albania. While trying to bring her home, Helena was killed by the later Bloody Baron and, as the Gray Lady, subsequently became the house ghost of Ravenclaw. The diadem has since been considered lost. When Tom Riddle was a student at Hogwarts, his flattering and manipulative manner succeeded in coaxing Helena from the location of the diadem. Probably after graduating from school, he went there and made the Horcrux by murdering an Albanian farmer. When Voldemort years auditioning later with Dumbledore for a teaching job, he hid the diadem on this occasion in the Room of Requirement , which it believes that only he knows of its existence. Harry discovers the diadem in Volume 6 when he hides the Book of the Half-Blood Prince there, but does not recognize the Horcrux. This is finally found again by Harry Potter in Volume 7 and destroyed by the demon fire conjured up by Vincent Crabbe .
Harry Potter
Due to the instability of Voldemort's soul (due to the creation of the previous five horcruxes), another part of it was transferred to Harry during the attempted murder of Harry and thus inadvertently created a horcrux, but without the characteristic black-magic protection. Voldemort did not die due to the division of souls, but became "weaker than the weakest spirit" through the destruction of his body. Towards the end of the seventh volume, Harry Potter voluntarily lets Voldemort put the killing curse a second time . Only Voldemort's soul part in Harry is killed, Harry himself survives.
Voldemort's snake Nagini
The last Horcrux was made by murdering Bertha Jorkins. Nagini dies in the seventh volume as the last Horcrux at the hands of Neville Longbottom after the latter pulls Gryffindor's sword out of his talking hat and beheads the snake.

Marauder's Map

The Marauder's Map was stolen from Argus Filch's office by Weasley twins Fred and George during their freshman year at school . If the map, which looks like an old, blank parchment, is activated, all of Hogwarts and its surroundings appear with all secret passages, with the exception of the Room of Requirement and the Chamber of Secrets . All people staying in the area of ​​the map are then represented by small dots with their names. The saying "I solemnly swear that I am a do- no ." ("I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.") Activates the card. The saying " Mischief done!" (Or "wrongdoing committed!" In the film - in English: "Mischief managed!" ) Hides the card again. When Severus Snape tries in the third volume to get behind the function of the parchment, only insults from the creators of the card appear: Moony ( Remus Lupine ), Paw ( Padfoot, Sirius Black ), Crown ( Prongs, James Potter ) and Wormtail ( Wormtail , Peter Pettigrew ). Fred and George give the card to Harry Potter in his third year.

Silver hand

The silver hand can be conjured up as a substitute hand for a mutilated person using a spell. It can be moved like a normal hand, but still has a strong bond with the will of the producer. This becomes evident when Pettigrew, who has returned Harry's grace and has been disarmed, is strangled by his own silver hand at the will of Voldemort, which Harry and Ron cannot prevent with normal spells.


The spickoscope (sneakoscope) is a device that sounds an alarm if it detects secrecy (lies and deceit). There are chickoscopes of different sizes and sensitivities. Harry has a pocket picoscope that he gets from Ron for his birthday; he brought it from Egypt. Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody has a much bigger one. In the seventh volume, Harry receives a new birthday present from Hermione.

In both cases, in which the spicoscope is described as not working, this turns out to be a mistake. Harry's first spicoscope, for example, always sounds the alarm, but rightly points to the unrecognized Peter Pettigrew . Likewise, "Professor Moody" shows Harry his spickoscope, which he deactivated because it was supposedly too sensitive at Hogwarts and constantly jumps at the students' attempts to deceive. In fact, it is with Professor Moody but to Barty Crouch jr .

Mirror Nerhegeb

The Mirror of Erised (written backwards: desire or desire ) is an enchanted mirror that shows no ordinary mirror images. The person who looks into him always sees what he or she most desires. This is how Harry Potter sees his family in the first volume in the mirror. Ron Weasley, on the other hand, sees himself as head boy and captain of the Gryffindor Quidditch team , holding the Quidditch and house cups. The inscription engraved in the frame of the mirror reads “NERHEGEB ZREH NIED REBA ZTILTNA NIED THCIN” , which backwards becomes “NOT YOUR FACE BUT DESIRE YOUR HEART” (in the English original: “Erised stra ehru oyt ube cafru oyt on wosi” ) backwards to “I show not your face but your heart's desire” ). According to Albus Dumbledore , people have already died in front of this mirror because they could not tear themselves away. He also wrote the quote from the first volume: “The happiest person on earth could use the Nerhegeb mirror like a normal mirror.” The mirror is described in volume 1, after which it is only mentioned occasionally, most recently in the seventh volume when Harry realizes that Dumbledore was seeing his family intact in the mirror. In the first volume, Harry gets the Philosopher's Stone through the mirror.

Sorting hat

The sorting hat ( literally " sorting hat "), an ancient, tattered pointed hat that originally belonged to Godric Gryffindor , was each given part of their intelligence by the founders of Hogwarts, so that at the beginning of the school year it divides the new students into the individual houses . Before that, he sings a song that describes the characteristics of the residents of the individual houses and, if necessary, warns of dangers that threaten the school. The new students first sit on the stool and then put on their hats. After researching the character, the hat will reveal the name of the house to which it will send the new student. It has a crack near the brim that acts as a mouth. The Sorting Hat says repeatedly in difficult times (after Voldemort's return) that the houses must stick together.

In the film adaptation of the second part, Dumbledore mentions that it is not your hat, but your own will that decides which house you go to.

In Volume 2 , Harry gets the hat from the Phoenix Fawkes when he has to fight the basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets . At this time, Godric Gryffindor's sword magically appears in the hat, which Harry pulls out, killing the basilisk.

In the seventh part, Neville Longbottom also pulls the sword of Godric Gryffindor out of the Sorting Hat, which Lord Voldemort presses on his head to burn the hat. The "dark lord" only wants the House of Slytherin , the "purebloods", to be taught at Hogwarts. As can be seen in the epilogue of the seventh volume, the hat will probably be restored.

"Only a true Gryffindor could have pulled the sword out of his hat." - Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets .

Philosopher's Stone

With the help of the Philosopher's Stone , in the American translation Sorcerer's Stone , alchemists are able to brew the life-extending elixir of life. The only alchemist who had succeeded in making a philosopher's stone was Nicolas Flamel . Flamel was a friend of Albus Dumbledore and was 665 years old when it was mentioned in the first volume.

Dumbledore had Flamel's Philosopher's Stone brought by Rubeus Hagrid from Gringotts to Hogwarts at the beginning of Volume One , because Lord Voldemort was after the stone. But when the stone was unsafe even at Hogwarts and Voldemort almost succeeded in stealing it in the body of Quirinus Quirrell , Dumbledore agreed with Flamel that it would be best to destroy the stone, even if that resulted in Flamel's death.

Neither the Philosopher's Stone nor Nicolas Flamel are inventions of the author, but are based on centuries-old legends.

Vanishing Cabinet

The Harry Potter novels tell of a Vanishing Cabinet several times . These are two cabinets that have a kind of passage to each other. One is at Hogwarts and the other is at Borgin and Burkes on Knockturn Alley .

The Hogwarts cabinet is smashed in the second volume by Peeves , instigated by Nearly Headless Nick to distract Filch . In volume five, Fred and George put a Slytherin named Montague in the broken Hogwarts closet.

It is being repaired in the sixth volume by Draco Malfoy in order to be able to transport Death Eaters from Borgin and Burkes to Hogwarts . In Volume 7, Harry, Ron and Hermione see it in the Room of Requirement , which at this point is the Room of Hidden Things, in search of Ravenclaw's diadem.

Magic wand

Every magician has a wand (wand), which serves as an extension of the will and to bundle the magical powers. A magic wand is usually made of the wood of a tree guarded by magical creatures (bowtruckles) and contains a magical core (for example made of dragon heart fibers, phoenix tail feathers, unicorn or veelehair ).

Wands are not selected by the customer based on their appearance or material. Every wand is unique and therefore does not suit every magician. Rather, the wand chooses its first owner, but can later pass into the possession of any magician who defeats its owner.

Two magic wands whose magical cores are identical, i.e. come from the same magical being, cannot be used against each other without serious effects. The best-known pair of wands are the wands of Lord Voldemort and Harry Potter , whose magical core is each a feather from Albus Dumbledore's Phoenix Fawkes .

In England, Ollivander in Diagon Alley is considered the best address for wands. The wand maker Gregorowitsch is known on the Eastern European mainland .

Time turner

The Time Turner is an hourglass attached to a chain that can be used to travel back in time. For every hour you want to travel back in time, you have to turn the hourglass once in a circle. However, you have to be careful that you are not seen by your past self or by someone who knows you in the present. This could lead to considerable psychological damage.

At the beginning of the third year of school, Hermione receives such a device from Prof. McGonagall . She needs it so that she can take several subjects that take place at the same time. Harry and Hermione use this time-turner at the end of the book to save the hippogriff Buckbeak and Harry's godfather Sirius Black .

The time turner is kept in the Ministry of Magic in the Department of Mysteries. However, they are destroyed when Harry and his friends infiltrate the Department of Mysteries in Volume 5 and fight the Death Eaters .

Utility and consumer goods

The wizarding world has its own food and currency.

Bertie Botts beans of all flavors

Bertie Bott's beans come in every flavor. Harry eats them for the first time on the train to Hogwarts. Unfortunately, not only he has to find out that there really are all flavors. Albus Dumbledore once caught a bean with the flavor of earwax.


Butterbeer (Butterbeer) is a mildly alcoholic beverage that is drunk by young magicians.

Harry first encountered the drink in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban . When consumed in moderation, it has no intoxicating effects on people. House-elves are, however, much more sensitive, which is probably due to their small body size and thus their much lower weight. After being released by Barty Crouch, Winky fell victim to butterbeer addiction. Butterbeer can be drunk cold or hot, but it always has a warming effect.

Pumpkin juice

Pumpkin juice (Pumpkin Juice) is in the wizarding world, a non-alcoholic soft drink that is served, usually cooled for all occasions. The very popular soft drink is sold, for example, from the serving trolley on the Hogwarts Express .

Chocolate frogs

Chocolate frogs are a chocolate candy in the form of frogs that move and sometimes escape the consumer if he is not careful. As a supplement there is the chocolate frog collection cards, on which famous witches and wizards are depicted.

Magic crackers

Magic crackers ultimately work just like regular crackers. You pull on both sides of the candy and objects come out with a loud bang. However, the effects are greater and the objects can also be alive (e.g. mice, see Volume 1)


Members of the British wizarding community trade in their own pure coins . The three different types of coins are called Galleone, Sickel and Knut . One galleon is 17 sickles and one sickle is 29 knuts. For the three types of coins, the names golden Galleon, Silbersickel and Bronzeknut are occasionally used .

The cumbersome currency subdivision into non-decimal fractions alludes to the British currency system, since the British pound was divided into 20 shillings of 12  pence each until 1971  , and the penny into four farthings before 1960 . In the history of the British pound there were a total of twelve different subdivisions.

The magic bank Gringotts also changes money of the non-magical population, called "Muggle money" by wizards, into wizard money. Many wizards have problems dealing with Muggle money.

In the fifth volume, the leaders of "Dumbledore's Army," a secret organization founded by students to defend against the dark arts, use enchanted false galleons to unnoticedly tell members the date of the next meeting.

Currency experts at GWK Travelex have calculated on the basis of the books and interviews with Joanne K. Rowling that in 2005 the value of a Galleon was 7.40  euros , that of a Sickel was 43 euro cents and that of a Knut was 2 euro cents  . There are various currency converters that assume different values.

Media and means of communication

There are a number of media and means of communication in the world of magicians . In the case of the latter, a distinction has to be made between those means that are commonly used, such as owl mail and floo networks, and those that are used more for secret communication within smaller groups, such as enchanted coins or mirrors, Patronus spells and the dark mark.

Owl mail

Mail is usually delivered by mail owls among members of the wizarding society . Many wizards have their own owl ; alternatively, owls can be rented from post offices for a fee. Larger shipments may be transported by several owls.


A howler is a letter in red color. When opened, the message it contains can be heard as a loud shouting. It is mainly sent by angry parents to their child at Hogwarts when the child has become suspicious of embarrassing misconduct. This is always very embarrassing for the person concerned, as the mail at Hogwarts is brought into the Great Hall by owls during breakfast and the screaming of the howler is then clearly audible for everyone present.

In the second volume, Ron receives a howler from Mrs. Weasley , because several Muggles were eyewitnesses to the flying Ford Anglia and this caused great difficulties for Arthur Weasley at the Ministry of Magic.

Floo network (communication)

The Floo Network is an infrastructure for traveling and communicating. It consists of connected chimneys (flue) . With the aid of Floo Powder , magicians can communicate from one connected fireplace to another by sticking their head into the fire, which then appears in the other fire.

Printed matter

The Daily Prophet is the magician's daily newspaper. It is delivered daily by post owls who have to be paid for it. The Daily Prophet employs both reporters and photographers to take the moving images for the editions. Rita Kimmkorn worked for the Daily Prophet for years and caused a sensation with her sensational articles. The editor of the Daily Prophet is a former student of Horace Slughorn named Barnabas Cuffe.

The " Evening Prophet" is an occasional special edition of the Daily Prophet on special topics. In addition, there is a Sunday edition of the Daily Prophet called "Sonntagsprophet" (Sunday Prophet) , which is mentioned for the first time in volume 5.

Der "Klitterer" (The Quibbler) is an alternative magazine published by Xenophilius Lovegood and which spreads mostly absurd stories about conspiracy theories and fantasy beings. The Quibbler is the first to publish the true story of the return of Voldemort. The report written by Rita Kimmkorn is later also adopted by the Daily Prophet.

There are also numerous special interest magazines such as “ Verwnung heute ” ( Transfiguration Today , a scientific journal ), the women's magazine “Hexenwoche” ( Witch Weekly ) and the magazine “Rennbesen im Test” ( Which Broomstick ).

Magic Broadcasting (MRF) (Wizarding Wireless Network (WWN))

The equivalent of normal radio in the wizarding world, runs on magic instead of electricity. It is mentioned over and over again in the course of the volumes, it is only in the seventh volume that it takes on a bigger role when some former Hogwarts students ( Lee Jordan , Fred and George Weasley ) and members of the old Order of the Phoenix put on a pirate transmitter to get past the state-controlled media apparatus To report Harry's fight against Voldemort and the general, true situation in the country. Accordingly, the program is called Potter Watch, which can only be received after magically entering a code word.


The members of the Order of the Phoenix use their patronage to deliver short messages. After arriving at the recipient, the Patronus speaks with the voice of the sender. This type of communication was invented by Albus Dumbledore.

Enchanted coins

The members of Dumbledore's army use enchanted galleons to call a meeting. Inspired by the principle of the Dark Mark , Hermione enchanted the coins so that the date of the next meeting is always displayed instead of the serial number.

Dark mark

The "dark mark"

Lord Voldemort can use the Dark Mark, which looks like a kind of tattoo on the left forearms of the Death Eaters, to summon his followers - they feel his call through intense pain in the mark. Conversely, the Death Eaters can use the Dark Mark to summon Voldemort. The dark mark is a skull with a snake coming out of its mouth. Death Eaters let it rise over the houses in which they murdered with murder .

Two way mirror

Two-way mirrors are two magically connected mirror parts that are owned by two magicians. If one of you pronounces the name of the other mirror owner, this appears in your own mirror and you appear in the mirror of the other, then the connection is established and you can talk to each other.

During his lifetime in Volume 5, Sirius Black gave Harry Potter such a mirror so that he could stay in contact with him. After Sirius' death, the mirror reaches Dumbledore's brother Aberforth .


Apparate and Disapparate

Apparition or disapparition (Apparition, Disapparition) is a form of travel popular among magicians. A magician, accompanied by the characteristic plop, can deliberately dissolve into thin air in order to reappear in a distant place. This form of locomotion is not easy to learn and involves certain risks, such as: B. splinching , in which body parts remain at the point of origin. Therefore you have to be of legal age (17 years) to receive a license after passing an Apparatus test, which is issued by the relevant department of the Ministry of Magic .

However, there is also apparating side by side. This means that a wizard who can Apparate can take another (e.g. a minor) with him. This works by holding onto or being held by the apparating wizard. In Volume 6, for example, Harry is taken by Dumbledore when they visit Horace Slughorn . It is the other way around when Harry brings the weakened Dumbledore at the end of the tape from the cave to Hogsmeade.

There are wards that prevent Apparating and Disapparating in certain places (e.g. Hogwarts ). However, these do not work against the appearance of some non-human beings such as house-elves .

The seventh part of the series implies that the distance that can be Apparated is limited, as Voldemort - called by his Death Eaters - first has to fly a distance before he can Apparate to the destination.

The term apparition (German appearance , derived from the Latin aperire ), which actually exists in English and is used in the original, was supplemented by Rowling with the made-up words disapparition, to apparatus and to disapparate .


The broom (broomstick) is a flying passenger vehicle for private transport and a sports equipment. Flying a broom takes skill and practice. At the behest of Professor McGonagall , Harry receives a Nimbus 2000 in the first year of school . This is later destroyed when Harry is attacked by a Dementor during a Quidditch game . Harry precipitated by the attack to the ground while the broom in the Whomping Willow (Whomping Willow) flies and is processed into kindling. His godfather, Sirius Black , gives Harry a Firebolt when he is in third grade . Both brooms are the fastest brooms in the world by the time Harry gets them.

More in the books mentioned broom brands are the Cleansweep (Clean Sweep) 5, 7 and 11 as well as the shooting star, the comet 2-60, the Silver Arrow and the Nimbus 2001 .

Driving knight

The Knight Traveling on the Warner Bros. Studio Tour in London

The driving knight (in the original Knight Bus, Knight means knight and is homophonic with the word Night , which means night ) is the equivalent of the Muggle public transport in the magical world .

Modeled after the English Routemaster double-decker buses, the bright purple three-decker picks up witches and wizards stranded throughout England , Scotland and Wales in order to transport them to a destination of their choice for a small fee (11 sickles ). He races through the streets, imperceptible to Muggles, causing every obstacle to "hop" out of the way. On long stretches, it can jump up to 150 kilometers with a loud bang. The interior fittings adapt to the time of day: where there are beds at night, armchairs are waiting during the day.

However, many wizards prefer other travel options, as these are usually more convenient and faster (e.g. the floo network ). In the third book, Harry Potter drives with the Knight Traveling from the Dursleys to London to the Leaky Cauldron pub .

While in the novels Ernie Prang steers the vehicle and Stan Shunpike serves the travelers, in the films a talking shrunken head is placed at their side.

Floo network

The Floo Network is an infrastructure for traveling and communicating in the magical world . It consists of connected chimneys (flue) . With the aid of flea powder, magicians can travel from one connected fireplace to another or simply stick their heads out of a window and communicate in this way .

The only legally and permanently flooed Muggle fireplace is that of the British Prime Minister . The chimneys of the floo network are subject to the floo supervision of the Ministry of Magic and can be monitored by network supervisors. In fifth grade, Grand Inquisitor Dolores Umbridge has all the chimneys at Hogwarts monitored except her own. A circumstance that Harry takes advantage of more than once, but which also almost leads to Sirius Black being caught by Umbridge.

Floo Powder activates the network function of a fireplace that is connected to the network. Thrown in the chimney it creates green flames or discolors existing green. This is the signal to step into the chimney or stick your head in and say the name of the destination. It is extremely important to pronounce the name very clearly, otherwise there is a possibility of ending up in the wrong fireplace. For example, this happens to Harry the first time it is used; he ends up in Knockturn ( Knockturn Alley, more precisely in the loading of Borgin and Burkes ) rather than in the Diagon Alley (Diagon Alley), because he named "Diagon Alley" vaguely as "diagonally" ( "diagonally opposite" Engl. for) pronounce.

Floo is not an existing English word, but a corruption of flue, the English word for fireplace. The German translation can also be seen as jumping back and forth between the chimneys like a flea .

Hogwarts Express

Locomotive in the style of the Hogwarts Express traction engine
The Glenfinnan Viaduct - this is where the train is searched in the third part by Dementors

The Hogwarts Express is a train that serves school traffic between London and the Hogwarts Magic School . Pulled by a scarlet locomotive , it travels between platform 9¾ of the (real) London King's Cross station and Hogsmeade, which is hidden from the Muggle world . Occasionally, new teachers also use the Hogwarts Express. During the journey, passengers can get their food from a mobile food truck that sells various magical sweets , among other things .


Portkeys (Portkey) are magically changed objects with which individual wizards or can travel in groups large distances. Every object can be transformed into a portkey with the magic formula "Portus" controlled by the Ministry of Magic . As a rule, inconspicuous objects such as a broken boot or an old bucket are used as port keys so that Muggles consider them to be rubbish and therefore do not touch / trigger them by accident. The trophy in the Triwizard Tournament was also a portkey. He was born by Barty Crouch Jr. transformed into such and should, if touched, bring Harry Potter to the cemetery where Lord Voldemort was waiting for him as the winner of the tournament. However, Harry Potter and Cedric Diggory decided that they were both winners and touched the portkey at the same time. There are also portkeys that become active on a predetermined date and transport the person (s) touching them to their destination.


In the seven books in the series, three schools of magic are mentioned, all of which are in Europe: Hogwarts , the Durmstrang Institute (in northern Eastern Europe) and the Beauxbatons Academy (in southern France). The schools meet in the fourth volume for the first time in over a century for the Triwizard Tournament .

School degrees

At Hogwarts, the training of wizards and witches is carried out in two stages. All children aged eleven and over can attend school for at least five years. At the end of the fifth year of school, students take exams in various subjects. You will then receive the so-called ZAGs ( magic degrees , in the original: OWL, Ordinary Wizarding Level, German: "Normales Zauberer-level"), which serve as the basis for your participation in further subjects. Several teachers expect at least an E grade to participate in their lessons from the sixth grade . Achieving the ZAGs is an intermediate school leaving certificate that is sufficient to take up most magical professions. Only those who strive for a highly qualified profession, for example that of an auror, have to add two more school years. At the end of the seventh and final year of school, the students take the UTZ exams ( Unheimlich Toller Zauberer, in the original: NEWT, Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Test, German: “Horribly strenuous magic test”).

In the original English are the abbreviations puns: "OWL" is in German " Owl ", "NEWT" means " pig ".

Grade Levels

The grades awarded in the examinations have the following names:

  1. O hnegleichen (Outstanding), top score
  2. E rwartungen exceeded (Exceeds Expectations)
  3. A nnehmbar (Acceptable), minimum required to pass an exam
  4. M ies (P, Poor)
  5. S chrecklich (D, Dreadful)
  6. T roll



The making of Harry Potter 29-05-2012 (7387540180) .jpg

Quidditch is a team sport . For more information, see the book Quidditch Through the Ages .

The most popular sport in the wizarding world is played by two teams, each with seven players flying on brooms with a total of four balls. For each team, three rings, which are attached at a height of 20 meters, serve as goals.

The players per team:

  • Three hunters (chasers) try to throw the Quaffle through one of the opposing gates.
  • A Keeper (Keeper) tries to prevent throw the enemy fighters gates.
  • Two beaters try to fend off the two bludgers from their fellow players with bats and direct them to opposing players.
  • A viewfinder (Seeker) tries to catch the golden snitch. Seekers are usually the smallest, lightest, and most agile players.

The balls in play:

  • The Golden Snitch: A 4 centimeter large golden ball with silver wings that flies around very quickly in the air. He replaced the originally used little golden sniper, a 4 centimeter tall bird that was almost exterminated by the success of the game and is now under magical conservation. Volume 7 explains that the snitch has a type of memory (flesh memory) that allows it to identify the first person to touch it.
  • Two Bludgers: Large black balls that players try to knock off their brooms and race through the air, self-propelled.
  • The Quaffle (Quaffle): The ball the size of a soccer ball is thrown onto the rings. Originally, the game consisted only of scoring goals with the Quaffle. The two Bludgers and the Golden Snitch came later.

A goal is worth ten points. A game is over as soon as a seeker has caught the golden snitch. This gives his team an additional 150 points, and this team almost always wins.

In the fourth book, Harry Potter attends the Quidditch World Cup with the Weasleys and Hermione. Harry meets top player Viktor Krum at the Triwizard Tournament as champion of the Durmstrang Magic School.

Quidditch also found its way into the real world as Muggle Quidditch .

Triwizard tournament

The Triwizard Tournament is a competition between the three largest European magic schools , Hogwarts , Durmstrang and Beauxbatons. A magical goblet of fire selects a champion from the volunteers of each school who will represent his school in the tournament. The champions enter into some kind of binding magical contract that forces them to end the tournament. The tournament itself consists of three magical tasks, spread over a period of one school year, which must be solved as quickly and in an original way as possible. The tasks are z. Sometimes extremely dangerous and because of the high death rate among the champions, the tournament had been suspended in the past.

In the fourth volume a triwizard tournament takes place for the first time in over a century, the new edition is hosted by Hogwarts. In order to limit the risk, only adult (17 year old) students are allowed to apply. Through the efforts of Barty Crouch, Jr. in the guise of Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody , however, this rule is circumvented in the case of Harry Potter, and since the goblet of fire spits out Harry's name, he is also forced to participate alongside the three actual champions. The tournament ends catastrophically with Lord Voldemort's return and the death of the first Hogwarts champion, Cedric Diggory .



Amortentia (Latin amor, love; Latin temptare, strive for something ) is the strongest love potion in the world. It does not create real love, but causes intense crushing or obsession. It is considered to be one of the most dangerous and powerful magic potions. The potion smells different for everyone; Harry Potter smells a floral scent, which he smells again when Ginny joins Harry, Hermione and Ron, Hermione smells freshly cut grass, new parchment and Ron's hair.

Felix Felicis

Felix Felicis (Latin: felix, the lucky one; felicis, the lucky one) is a very strong lucky drink. He lets the person who is taking him do everything without much effort. It is gold colored and is also called Liquid Luck .

It is prohibited at events such as sports competitions and exams. When taken frequently, Felix Felicis acts as a strong poison and causes dizziness, recklessness and excessive self-confidence.

  • Harry won a vial of this potion in volume six after brewing the best potion thanks to the Half-Blood Prince's Potions Book. Since the production of the potion is complex, lengthy and difficult, Harry, Ron and Hermione carefully consider what they use the Felix Felicis bottle for.
  • To help his friend Ron with a Quidditch game , Harry pretends to mix a shot of "the Felix" into the pumpkin juice for his nervous friend to make Ron think he's lucky. Ron drinks this juice, which now has the psychological effect of a placebo , which makes him the acclaimed guardian in the Quidditch match against the Slytherins .
  • Harry was able to get an important memory from Professor Slughorn through the effects of the potion .
  • At the end of the book "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" Harry gives Ron, Hermione and Ginny the vial to Felix Felicis to protect them in the event of a fight.

Skele wax

Skele-wax ( Skele-Gro; 'gro' is derived from the English word grow ) is a bad-tasting magic potion that causes bones to grow again with great pain. Harry has to take it in the second volume when Professor Lockhart accidentally pulls the bones off Harry's right arm. In volume seven, the goblin Griphook gets him to heal his broken legs.

Sud of the Living Death

The Sud of living death or drink of the Living Dead (Draft of Living Death) is a powerful sleeping potion made from grated Affodillwurzel , wormwood infusion and valerian root . One drop of this potion will make even the most alert wizard sleep soundly. If the potion is prepared incorrectly, it can cause sleep so deep that the drinker does not wake up again.

Harry prepares it in the sixth volume according to the deviating instructions from the Book of the Half-Blood Prince and with his good result wins a bottle of Felix Felicis from Professor Slughorn.


Veritaserum (Latin veritas, truth; Latin serum, whey) is the strongest existing elixir of truth. Three drops of this colorless and odorless elixir are enough to coax a person's innermost secrets. Its use is therefore strictly controlled by the Ministry of Magic. Professor Snape said that if you took three drops of the serum, even Voldemort would reveal his deepest secrets.

It takes a full lunar cycle, a month, to mature. If you give it earlier, it acts like poison.

Professor Snape threatens Harry in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire to instill the potion. In the same volume, Professor Dumbledore uses the elixir to interrogate Barty Crouch Jr.

Later, Professor Umbridge wants to use the potion to elicit the whereabouts of Sirius Black and Professor Dumbledore from Harry . This fails, however, as she has already used up Professor Snape's entire supply of Veritaserum for interrogating a number of students. In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince it is also implied that Dumbledore had already tried to elicit secrets about Voldemort's past from Horace Slughorn by means of Veritaserum and that this ultimately unsuccessful attempt had at least greatly cooled their otherwise friendly and collegial relationship.

Polyjuice Potion

The polyjuice potion allows a wizard to take on the shape of another person for an hour. The complicated preparation of this potion takes a month. The effect can be extended indefinitely by taking it regularly once an hour.

In order for the Polyjuice Potion to work, you have to admit part of the person you want to transform into, for example hair or toenails. The potion is not intended to be transformed into animals. Ron, Harry and Hermione use the polyjuice potion in the second volume to sound out Draco Malfoy . Harry and Ron take the form of Crabbe and Goyle , but Hermione begins to transform into a cat after accidentally adding some cat hair and has to be transformed back by Madam Pomfrey. Barty Crouch Jr. also uses this potion in the fourth volume to transform himself into the former Aurors "Mad-Eye" Moody .

In the seventh volume, six of Harry's friends take the potion to confuse the Death Eaters as they escape from Privet Drive. Harry later used it again and again at Bill and Fleur's wedding, as well as with Ron and Hermione. a. in order to first penetrate the Ministry of Magic , as in the later course into the wizard's bank Gringotts .

Wolfsbane Potion

The Wolfsbane Potion (Wolfsbane Potion) ensures that a werewolf remains sane when he is transformed on the night of the full moon, so that he can control his actions and not become a danger to others. The inventor of the Wolfsbane Potion is Damocles Belby, who studied with Horace Slughorn at Hogwarts . Professor Snape prepares the potion in the third volume for Remus Lupine .

Spells and Curses

Most of the magical uses are classified in the English original. There is magic (spells) Enchantments (charms), curses (jinxes) hexes (hexes) and curses (curses) . In the German translation, this classification is largely lost, a distinction is only made - if at all - between spells and curses, with spells and charms being assigned to spells and jinxes, hexes and curses to curses. The spells and curses are mostly borrowed from an ancient language, but usually do not adhere to the corresponding grammar. The general counter-spell Finite Incantatem is not listed everywhere. Some of the sayings listed appear only in or have been renamed in the films.

List of known spells

Magic of the Ministry of Magic

Certain spells can be performed and used by the Department that have a large spatial extent and probably extend across the whole of Great Britain: namely the tracking of spells, the trace of minors and the spell over a spoken name.

Tracking spells

The Ministry is able to identify each spell cast and the location where it was cast. However, there is no way of knowing who created the spell. This becomes important during Harry's first year and sophomore year break at Hogwarts when Harry is falsely accused of performing a levitation charm when it was actually the house elf, Dobby .

The track

The trail lies on every underage wizard so that the ministry can identify the whereabouts of every child and young person under the age of 17. However, this is no longer possible for magicians over 17, regardless of the laws of the current government. This is particularly evident from the fact that even after Voldemort and the Death Eaters came to power, Harry, Ron and Hermione manage to live in secrecy without their whereabouts being constantly known.

Spell a spoken name

After Voldemort came to power over the Ministry of Magic, a ban is placed on the name Voldemort so that when the name is pronounced all wards can be broken and the person who spoke the name can be precisely located. This is especially fatal to members of the Order of the Phoenix , the organization to combat Voldemort. Since it was not common among them to refer to Voldemort as “You know who” or even the “Dark Lord”, many members of the Order of the Phoenix and finally Harry, Ron and Hermione could be tracked down with the ban.

Special spells

Legilimacy and Occlumency

Legilimacy describes the ability to magically penetrate another person's mind in order to be able to see the feelings and memories of the person concerned. It takes place through the magic spell of Legilimen . To Harry Potter, Severus Snape describes the mind of a person as a complex something, in which one cannot read as in a book, since the thoughts and feelings are not engraved in the brain and therefore one has to search for them. Likewise, eye contact usually has to exist in Legilimentik. In Harry Potter's case, Voldemort does not need direct eye contact, but can establish the connection to Harry's ghost through his curse scar (the lightning scar on the forehead). Harry Potter himself describes Legilimency as mind reading. Professor Snape contradicts this, since it is not the thoughts just being thought that play a role, but the memories of conversations with other people or actions.

The only way to defend against forcible intrusion into the mind is through occlumency, the closing of the mind. Severus Snape explains to Harry that Occlumency is similar to resisting the Imperius Curse that Harry has already been able to fight. This closing of the mind enables the person to lie to the Legilimentor or to hide something from him. An example of a brilliant Occlumency is Severus Snape himself, as it turns out in the seventh volume that Snape could deceive Lord Voldemort for 20 years.

Patronus spell

The Patronus Charm drives out dementors . Its application brings with it the difficulty of thinking of a happy event in an acute danger situation and at the same time uttering the magic formula “Expecto Patronum ” (Latin for: I expect a patron). Only a few magicians have mastered this spell, it is part of advanced magic. If this is done successfully, a veil of mist breaks out from the tip of the wand, which ideally takes the form of an animal, a so-called figurative patronus. A Patronus can also be used as a messenger.

The patronus takes on a different form with each magician, which often has a personal reference. Harry Potter's Patronus is a deer , the same animal into which his father James Potter transformed himself as Animagus (lat. Patronus to pater “father”). Lily Potter's Patronus is a doe to match; the Patronus of Severus Snape, who was in love with Lily, takes the same shape. Albus Dumbledore's Patronus appears in the shape of a phoenix , derived from his pet Fawkes. His brother Aberforth Dumbledore's patronus is a billy goat, Kingsley Shacklebolts a lynx , Arthur Weasley a weasel , Hermione Granger an otter and Ron Weasley a small dog similar to a Jack Russell Terrier (J. K. Rowling owns a Jack Russell). Luna Lovegood's Patronus is a rabbit , Cho Chang's is a swan . Minerva McGonagall's Patronus is a cat with glasses drawing around the eyes, while Dolores Umbridge's Patronus appears as a long-haired cat. In the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Ginny Weasley owns a Patronus in the form of a horse .

The shape of Patronus can also change: Tonks ' Patronus changes into a wolf when she falls in love with the werewolf Remus Lupine .

Unbreakable oath

An Unbreakable Vow is an oath made between two or more wizards. In addition, a witness is present who seals the oath with his wand . The sworn still has the free choice to break the oath, but this leads to his immediate death.

Severus Snape swears to Narcissa Malfoy at the beginning of the sixth volume to support her son Draco in everything Lord Voldemort asks of him. Narcissa's sister Bellatrix Lestrange is a witness to this oath .

Ancient magic

There are very old magical processes that can be caused by certain actions. They are a kind of magic reward to the conjurer for a particularly courageous or generous deed. This form of magic is the most powerful of all and can ward off even the darkest curses and spells, even the killing curse Avada Kedavra. Anyone who wants to research this magic or even tries to change it can evoke rare magical paradoxes (example: the soul connection between Harry and Voldemort).

It is the same with Harry: when his mother died to protect him, she put such protection on him through her sacrifice out of love and thus prevented Voldemort from harming Harry (apart from the lightning scar). This ultimately leads to Voldemort destroying himself.

Towards the end of the third volume, Harry prevents Lupine and Black from killing Peter Pettigrew , whereupon he escapes and Voldemort can come to the rescue. Dumbledore's statement that it would prove useful to Harry to have saved Pettigrew finally comes true in Volume 7. When Peter tries to strangle Harry with his silver hand, he just lets go after Harry reminds him of this fact. Pettigrew is ultimately strangled by the same hand himself because she is controlled by Voldemort. Harry and Ron can no longer prevent this with normal sorcery.

List of known curses

Unforgivable curses

There are three Unforgivable Curses: Avada Kedavra, the Cruciatus Curse, and the Imperius Curse . Even the execution of one of these spells against a person is forbidden in Azkaban under threat of life imprisonment . Lord Voldemort and his followers, the Death Eaters , use these curses regularly. In order to carry out an unforgivable curse, it takes a strong will to do the deed and a strong magician. Harry Potter himself never uses the killing curse, tries several times to execute the Cruciatus curse and uses the Imperius curse several times with success. According to Bellatrix Lestrange's statement , the Unforgivable Curses - or at least the Cruciatus Curse - as an expression of their black magic origin must be invoked with corresponding "dark" feelings in the back of the mind and with great willpower.

Avada Kedavra

Avada Kedavra or the deadly curse ( Aramaic avd / אבד "to get lost, to disappear"; aram. Ke / כ "how"; aram. Davar / דבאר "the thing"; magic formula: Avada Kedavra ) kills living beings on the spot. While this unforgivable curse is being executed, a bright green flash can be seen; the victim dies immediately. There are no traces left on the victim's body that could reveal the cause of death. Death inflicted in this way is painless. There is no counter-curse for Avada Kedavra.

Among other things, Lord Voldemort killed Harry Potter's parents Lily and James Potter with this curse, just as Severus Snape killed Albus Dumbledore with this curse. Harry Potter is the only person who has survived this curse so far, and also the only one who has left traces on his body in the form of the lightning-shaped scar on his forehead.

The reason for this is that Harry's mother Lily sacrificed herself for her son, creating a strong protective shield, causing the killing curse to bounce back on Voldemort. Furthermore, a soul splinter of Voldemort was created, which manifested itself in Harry as a Horcrux .

Voldemort is not able to harm Harry due to Lily's protective wall ( Quirell , who serves Voldemort's soul temporarily as host, burns when he touches Harry). Only in the 4th year of school does Voldemort get the opportunity to touch Harry's blood undamaged through a connection with Harry's blood. However, it is still not possible for Voldemort to kill Harry with the killing curse, since their wands have the same core and are therefore brothers who cannot kill, destroy or defeat one another through their own inherent magic. It is only in the seventh volume that Voldemort can use a killing curse on Harry, when Harry surrenders voluntarily. However, Voldemort only destroys his own soul splinter, so that Lily Potter's son also survives this killing curse.

Cruciatus Curse

The Cruciatus curse ( Cruciatus Curse, Latin cruciatus "torture, torment, torture, crucifixion"; magic formula: Crucio, Latin cruciare "torture, torment", I-form: crucio ) is a curse for torturing living beings. The application of this unforgivable curse causes extremely severe pain in the victim, which can permanently damage the brain with prolonged exposure. However, if you don't want the curse to be abysmal, it won't have its full effect. With this curse, Neville Longbottom's parents were tortured to the point of madness by Bellatrix Lestrange and other Death Eaters.

Even Harry Potter has repeatedly tried to apply this curse, but remained always without success until the seventh band. In the fifth volume, Bellatrix Lestrange is overturned, but Harry's curse, driven by righteous anger, cannot cause lasting pain. In the sixth volume, Severus Snape can easily ward off the curse. In the seventh volume, Harry takes revenge on Amycus Carrow by means of the Cruciatus curse in the Ravenclaw Tower after he spat on Professor McGonagall.

Imperius curse

The Imperius curse ( Imperius Curse, Latin imperium “power, rule, command” to Latin imperare “rule, command”; magic formula: Imperio ) is a curse that enables the control of other living beings. This unforgivable curse can be warded off by mental effort, but this usually requires enormous perseverance and training. Harry makes it in the fourth part ( Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire ) when the wrong Moody teaches him.

After the end of Voldemort's reign , many former Death Eaters claim that they only acted under the influence of the Imperius Curse. The Ministry of Magic is going to great lengths to find out who followed Voldemort of their own free will and who is making the claim.

As you learn in the fourth book, Barty Crouch Sr. his son Barty Crouch Jr. Freed from Azkaban magic prison at the request of his wife . Crouch Sr. finished with Crouch Jr. with the Imperius curse and locked him in the house. He can only defend himself after years and now, after he has completely freed himself, puts his father under his influence. He then controls the real Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody with the help of the Imperius Curse in order to take his place. When Barty Crouch Sr. begins to fight back against the curse, he is murdered by his own son and buried as a bone in Hagrid's herb garden.

During the time in which he poses as Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody, Barty Crouch Jr. turns. In Defense Against the Dark Arts, apply the Imperius Curse to all students in Harry's class so that they can learn how to fight it off. The only one who succeeds in this after trying several times is Harry Potter, who at the end of the fourth volume also manages to withstand the Imperius curse of Voldemort.

Priori Incantatem

Priori Incantatem, the curse reversal effect, reveals the last spells and curses performed with a wand in reverse order in the form of ghostly apparitions. The effect can occur when two essentially identical wands are used against each other.

This happens in the duel between Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort in the fourth volume ( Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire ). The pronounced curses fail to have their actual effect, the wands combine with a kind of beam of light and Harry's wand forces Voldemorts to reveal the last spells used: After Peter Pettigrew's silver hand, the soul shadows of the people last killed with Voldemort's wand appear, including Cedric Diggory and Harry's parents James and Lily Potter .

With the magic formula Prior Incantado , a wizard can consciously evoke a weaker variant of the effect and reveal the last spell of another magic wand.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. JKR about squibs
  2. The official website of JKRowling ( Memento from June 23, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  3. accio-quote.org