Hogwarts

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Not to be confused with Hogwort.
Hogwarts School of Witchcraft And Wizardry
Coat of Arms for Hogwarts.
Coat of arms of Hogwarts
Universe Harry Potter
Type School
First appearance Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
Founded c. 9th/10th century
Head
Purpose Training for children with magical abilities (who may be enrolled at birth and acceptance is confirmed by owl post at age eleven)[1]
Motto Latin: Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus
("Never Tickle a Sleeping Dragon"[2])

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, shortened Hogwarts, is a fictional British school of magic for students aged eleven to eighteen, and is the primary setting for the first six books in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series.[3][4]

Rowling has suggested that she may have inadvertently taken the name from the hogwort plant (Croton capitatus), which she had seen at Kew Gardens some time before writing the series,[5][6] although the names "The Hogwarts" and "Hoggwart" appear in the 1954 Nigel Molesworth book How To Be Topp by Geoffrey Willans.[7][8]

Hogwarts school was voted as the 36th best Scottish educational establishment in a 2008 online ranking, outranking Edinburgh's Loretto School. According to a director of the Independent Schools Network Rankings, it was added to the schools listing "for fun" and was then voted on.[9]

School location and information

A studio model of Hogwarts at Leavesden Studios used in the film adaptations.

J. K. Rowling says she visualises Hogwarts, in its entirety, to be:[1]

A huge, rambling, quite scary-looking castle, with a jumble of towers and battlements. Like the Weasleys' house, it isn't a building that Muggles could build, because it is supported by magic.

In the novels, Hogwarts is somewhere in Scotland.[10][11] (The film Prisoner of Azkaban says that Dufftown is near.) The school has numerous charms and spells on and around it that make it impossible for a Muggle (i.e. a non-magical person) to locate it. Muggles cannot see the school; rather, they see only ruins and several warnings of danger.[GF Ch.11] The castle has extensive grounds with sloping lawns, flowerbeds and vegetable patches, a loch (called The Black Lake), a large dense forest (called the Forbidden Forest), several greenhouses and other outbuildings, and a full-size Quidditch pitch. There is also an owlery, which houses all the owls owned by the school and those owned by students. Some rooms in the school tend to "move around", and so do the stairs in the grand staircase.[12] Witches and wizards cannot Apparate or Disapparate in Hogwarts grounds, except when the Headmaster lifts the enchantment, whether only in certain areas or for the entire campus, so as to make the school less vulnerable when it serves the headmaster to allow Apparition.[GF Ch.28] Electricity and electronic devices are not found at Hogwarts. In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Hermione indicates that due to the high levels of magic, "substitutes for magic (that) Muggles use" such as computers, radar and electricity "go haywire" around Hogwarts. Radios however, make an exception. Rowling explains this by saying that the radios are not powered by electricity but by magic.

Hogwarts is a coeducational, secondary boarding school, taking children from ages eleven to eighteen.[4] Education at Hogwarts is not compulsory, with some students being home schooled as stated in the seventh book. Rowling initially said there are about one thousand students at Hogwarts.[13] She later suggested around six hundred, while acknowledging that this number was still inconsistent with the small number of people in Harry's year. She further explained that this had resulted from her creating only 40 characters for Harry's year.[14]

The Headmaster or Headmistress, assisted by a Deputy Headmaster or Headmistress, undertakes management of the school. The Head is answerable to the twelve-member Board of Governors.

Rowling has said that Hogwarts is "a multifaith school".[15]

Hogwarts is on the shore of a lake, sometimes called the Black Lake. In that lake are merpeople, Grindylows, and a giant squid. The giant squid does not attack humans and sometimes acts as a lifeguard when students are in the lake.

Admission

Admission to Hogwarts is selective, in that children who show magical ability will automatically gain a place,[16] and squibs cannot attend the school as students (though they can work there in other roles, as Argus Filch does).[17] A magical quill at Hogwarts detects the birth of magical children and writes their names into a large parchment book,[18] but there is no admission test because "you are either magical or you are not."[16] Every year, a teacher checks this book and sends a letter to the children who are turning eleven. Acceptance or refusal of a place at Hogwarts must be posted by 31 July. The letter also contains a list of supplies like spell books, uniform, and other things that the student will need. The prospective student is expected to buy all the necessary materials, normally from shops in Diagon Alley, a concealed street near Charing Cross Road in London that can be found behind the wizarding pub, The Leaky Cauldron. Students who cannot afford their supplies can receive financial aid from the school, as happened with the young orphan Tom Riddle.

Letters to Muggle-born witches and wizards, who may not be aware of their powers and are unfamiliar with the concealed wizarding world, are delivered in person by a member of Hogwarts staff, who then explains to the parents or guardians about magical society, and reassures them regarding this news.[HP7] They also assist the family in buying supplies and gaining access to Diagon Alley.

Though the school is in Great Britain, its catchment area is wider, as Irish students can also attend.

Each student is allowed to bring a cat, toad, rat or owl. Along with the acceptance letter, first-year students are sent a list of required equipment which includes a wand, subject books, a standard size 2 pewter cauldron, a set of brass scales, a set of glass or crystal phials, a kit of basic potion ingredients (for Potions), and a telescope (for Astronomy). The Hogwarts uniform consists of plain work robes in black, a plain black hat, a pair of protective gloves, and a black winter cloak with silver fastenings. Each uniform must contain the wearer's nametag. First years are not allowed a broomstick of their own, though an exception to this rule is made for Harry in his first year after he demonstrates an excellent ability as a Seeker in Quidditch.

Academic years are separated by holidays of about two months in the summer, and each year is divided into three terms by shorter holidays around Christmas and Easter.

Arrival

The primary mode of transportation to Hogwarts is the Hogwarts Express that students take at the start of each school year. Students board the train from Platform 9¾ at King's Cross station in London. The train leaves at 11:00 am and arrives at Hogsmeade Station, near Hogwarts, some time after nightfall.

From there, first-year students are accompanied by the Keeper of the Keys, Game and Grounds (in Harry's case, Hagrid) – or another suitable teacher if he is absent – to small boats, which magically sail across the lake and get them near the entrance of Hogwarts. The older students ride up to the castle in carriages pulled by creatures called Thestrals who are invisible to the pupils that have not witnessed death. When the first-year students initially arrive at the castle, they wait in a small chamber off the entrance hall until the older students have taken their seats, and then enter the Great Hall for the Sorting Ceremony to determine their House assignments. As Minerva McGonagall said in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone,

After the Sorting Hat sings a song, each student in turn is seated upon the stool in front of the rest of the student body. The Hat is placed on the student's head, whereupon it examines his or her mind and assigns them to one of the four Houses based on abilities, personality, and preferences. After the Sorting Ceremony, the students and teachers enjoy a feast, prepared by the Hogwarts house-elves. If Dumbledore is feeling cheerful, he will lead the students in singing the school song.[19]

Houses

The coat of arms of Hogwarts shows each house's mascot and House colours. Clockwise from top left: the Gryffindor lion, the Slytherin serpent, the Ravenclaw eagle, and the Hufflepuff badger.

Hogwarts is divided into four houses, each bearing the last name of its founder: Godric Gryffindor, Salazar Slytherin, Rowena Ravenclaw and Helga Hufflepuff. The houses compete throughout the school year, by earning and losing points for various events, for the House Cup (correctly answering a question in class, for example, may earn five or ten points; lateness to class may cost ten points). Each house also has its own Quidditch team that competes for the Quidditch Cup. These two competitions breed rivalries between the houses. Houses at Hogwarts are living and learning communities for their students. Each house is under the authority of one of the Hogwarts staff members. The Heads of the houses, as they are called, are in charge of giving their students important information, dealing with matters of severe punishment, and responding to emergencies in their houses, among other things. Each year, year level groups of every separate house share the same dormitory and classes. The dormitory and common room of a House are, barring rare exceptions, inaccessible to students belonging to other Houses.

In the early day of Hogwarts, the four founders hand-picked students for their Houses. When the founders worried how students would be selected after their deaths, Godric Gryffindor took his hat off and they each added knowledge to it, allowing the Sorting Hat to choose the students by judging each student's qualities and placing them in the most appropriate house. The student's own choices may affect the decision: the clearest example is the Hat telling Harry that he would do well in Slytherin in the first book, but ultimately selecting Gryffindor after Harry asks it not to put him in Slytherin.

The translators of the books' foreign editions had difficulty translating the "house" concept; in countries where this system does not exist, no word could adequately convey the importance of belonging to a house, the loyalty owed to it, and the pride taken in prizes won by the house.[20]

Gryffindor

Gryffindorcolours.svg

Gryffindor values courage, bravery, nerve and chivalry. Its mascot is the lion, and its colours are scarlet and gold. The Head of this house is the Transfiguration teacher and Deputy Headmistress, Minerva McGonagall, and the house ghost is Sir Nicholas de Mimsy-Porpington, more commonly known as Nearly Headless Nick. According to Rowling, Gryffindor corresponds roughly to the element of fire. The founder of the house is Godric Gryffindor.

The Gryffindor common room is in one of the castle's highest towers, and its entrance is on the seventh floor in the east wing of the castle and is guarded by a painting of The Fat Lady, who is garbed in a pink dress. She permits entry only after being given the correct password, as was distinguished in the third book, when Sirius Black tried forcing entry into the tower, only to be blocked by The Fat Lady after he could not give the correct password. In the first book, Neville Longbottom tends to forget the password and must wait near the painting until other Gryffindors arrive to open the way.[21]

Hufflepuff

Hufflepuffcolours.svg

Hufflepuff values hard work, patience, justice, and loyalty. The house mascot is the badger, and canary yellow and black are its colours. The Head of this house is the Herbology teacher Pomona Sprout, and the house ghost is The Fat Friar. According to Rowling, Hufflepuff corresponds roughly to the element of earth. The founder of this house is Helga Hufflepuff.

The Hufflepuff dormitories and common room entrance "is concealed in a stack of large barrels in a nook on the right hand side of the kitchen corridor." To enter, one must tap the barrel two from the bottom in the middle of the second row in the rhythm of 'Helga Hufflepuff'. Unlike any other house, the Hufflepuff common room has a repelling device that douses the illegal entrant in vinegar if the wrong lid is tapped or the rhythm is wrong.[22] The Hufflepuff common room is filled with yellow hangings and fat armchairs and it has little underground tunnels leading to the dormitories, all of which have perfectly round doors, like barrel tops (much like a badger sett).[23]

Ravenclaw

Ravenclawcolours.svg

Ravenclaw values intelligence, creativity, learning, and wit.[HP5][HP7] The house mascot is an eagle and the house colours are blue and bronze (blue and grey in the films). The head of this house is the Charms professor, Filius Flitwick, and the house ghost is The Grey Lady. According to Rowling, Ravenclaw corresponds roughly to the element of air. The founder of this house is Rowena Ravenclaw.

The dormitories are in Ravenclaw Tower, on the west side of Hogwarts. The common room, which went undescribed in the series until the climax of Deathly Hallows, is round and filled with blue hangings and armchairs, has a domed ceiling painted with stars and features a replica statue of Rowena wearing her diadem. Harry also notes that Ravenclaws "have a spectacular view of the surrounding mountains". A logical riddle must be solved to gain entry, whereas the Gryffindor and Slytherin common rooms only require a password (Hufflepuffs need to tap a barrel in the rhythm of "Helga Hufflepuff"), indicating that it may be easier for those students from other houses who possess a high degree of intelligence to enter this common room than others. Professor McGonagall, the head of the Gryffindor House, solves the riddle accurately.

Slytherin

Slytherincolours.svg

Slytherin house values ambition, cunning, leadership, and resourcefulness; the Sorting Hat said in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone that Slytherins will do anything to get their way. The house mascot of Slytherin is the serpent, and the house colours are green and silver. Salazar Slytherin founded the house. The Head of House is Severus Snape until near the end of the sixth book. Then, Horace Slughorn, the previous Head of House, comes out of retirement re-assuming authority. The ghost of Slytherin house is The Bloody Baron.[24] According to Rowling, Slytherin corresponds roughly to the element of water. The Slytherin dormitories and common room are reached through a bare stone wall in the dungeons. The Slytherin common room is a long, low, dungeon-style room, under the Hogwarts Lake, furnished with green lamps and carved armchairs. The room is described in the second book as having a greenish glow.

The Sorting Hat claims that blood purity is a factor in selecting Slytherins, although this is not mentioned until the fifth book. There is no reason to believe, however, that Muggle-born students are not sorted there, merely that pure-blooded students are more desirable to that house, as there are several examples of half-bloods in the house (such as Snape and Voldemort). In Deathly Hallows, a group of Snatchers claim that "not many Mudbloods" are sorted into Slytherin.

When believing Harry to be dead and thinking that he has final victory in his grasp, Voldemort proclaims his intention to abolish the other three houses and force all Hogwarts students into Slytherin. This design is foiled by his defeat and death, after which Slytherin becomes more diluted in its blood purity, no longer remaining the pure-blood bastion it once was. Its dark reputation, however, does linger.[23]

Terms and holidays

Hogwarts' school year is structured in a similar way to other non-magical schools and colleges in the UK, with a three-term year punctuated by holidays at Christmas and Easter and bounded by the long summer holiday of nine weeks. Term begins every year on 1 September, and finishes at the end of June the following year. Students have the option of staying at Hogwarts for the winter and spring holidays. Those who choose to stay at the castle do not have lessons and attend a feast on Christmas Day. Students also do not have classes the week of Easter, but this is much less enjoyable due to the large amount of work that the teachers assign students at this time in preparation for final exams.

Other than the breaks and weekends, students do not receive holidays. However, students third year and above may visit Hogsmeade, the local village, occasionally. There are normally four feasts per year: the start-of-term feast at the beginning of the school year, end-of-term feast at the end of the school year, and feasts at Halloween and Christmas. Feasts are also called to mark special occasions, as in Goblet of Fire, when there was a feast to celebrate the beginning of the Triwizard Tournament.

Subjects and teachers

Main article: Hogwarts staff

Being a school of magic, many subjects at Hogwarts differ from the studies of a typical school. Some subjects, such as History of Magic, derive from non-wizard – or muggle – subjects, but many others, such as charms and apparition classes, are unique to the wizarding world. There are twelve named teachers (referred to as Professors), each specialising in a single subject. All professors are overseen by a school head and deputy head. Transfiguration, Defence Against the Dark Arts, Charms, Potions, Astronomy, History of Magic, and Herbology are compulsory subjects for the first five years, as well as flying lessons. At the end of their second year, students are required to add at least two optional subjects to their syllabus for the start of the third year. The five choices are Arithmancy, Muggle Studies, Divination, Study of Ancient Runes and Care of Magical Creatures. "Very specialised subjects such as alchemy are sometimes offered in the final two years, if there is sufficient demand."[25]

Grading and assessment

During their first four years, students need only to pass each subject before advancing to the next level the following year. If students fail in their year, they need to repeat it in the following school year. To qualify as a registered practitioner of magic, students must study for the compulsory Ordinary Wizarding Level (O.W.L.) examinations taken at the end of the fifth year. If a student scores well enough on an O.W.L., he or she may take advanced classes in that subject for the final two years in preparation for the Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Tests (N.E.W.T.), an in-depth examination given at the end of the seventh year. A UK student generally takes only three or four A-Level subjects and exams, just as a typical Hogwarts student takes only a few N.E.W.T.-level subjects.

Most O.W.L.s consist of two parts, a written theoretical test and a practical demonstration of skills before the examiners. The History of Magic O.W.L. does not have a practical component. Subjects are graded on the following scale:

Passing Grades

  • O = Outstanding
  • E = Exceeds Expectations
  • A = Acceptable

Failing Grades

  • P = Poor
  • D = Dreadful
  • T = Troll

The O.W.L. roughly corresponds to the GCSE (formerly the O-Level), and the N.E.W.T. to the A-level or IB examinations used in the English, Welsh and Northern Ireland secondary school system. To proceed to a N.E.W.T., a student usually needs to have achieved at least an E in the O.W.L. of the same subject, although some professors such as Professor Snape insist upon a grade of O. Students who fail in their exams or who do not achieve high enough grades do not continue with the subject in their sixth and seventh years.[HP6]

At the end of their fifth year, students speak briefly with their head of house to decide which classes to continue in depending on their O.W.L. scores and their goals after school. The classes they decide to continue are considerably more advanced. Because they dropped one or more classes, students in their sixth and seventh year may get several class sessions off per week. The heavy workload that each class requires means that students usually spend these times studying and doing homework. At the end of their seventh and final year, students take the N.E.W.T. exams, which test what the student has learned over the past two years. Many professions require high grades in these tests, meaning that students must work hard to ensure that they pass.

Muggle British high schools do not have graduation ceremonies or award diplomas. Students may leave when they have reached age 16, though most stay on long enough to take the tests they need for jobs or entrance to university. Hogwarts follows this model.

Student life

Film set of The Great Hall, Hogwarts at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden, UK

The day begins at Hogwarts with breakfast in the Great Hall. Students sit at their own House table and can eat and socialise, or finish homework. The Headmaster or Headmistress eats with the professors at the High Table placed at the far end of the hall. During breakfast, owls bring in the students' post, generally consisting of The Daily Prophet, letters from parents or friends, or packages from home. A bell signals the start of the first class of the morning at 9 am.

There are two long morning classes with a short break in between them for students to get to their next class. After lunch, classes resume at 1 pm, and there is a break around afternoon teatime before another class period. The classes are about one hour in length, with occasional double periods lasting two hours. Classes end around five o'clock. First-year students get Friday afternoons off, while sixth- and seventh-year students have several free periods during the week. In the evening, students eat their dinner in the Great Hall, after which they are expected to be in their common rooms. Astronomy classes take place late at night in the Astronomy Tower.

The Great Hall film set at Leavesden studios.

The four House dormitories have secret entrances, generally known only to members of that house and require a password to gain entrance. Inside is the common room, which contains armchairs and sofas for the pupils and tables for studying and homework. There are fireplaces to keep the rooms warm, and students either relax here in the evenings or else complete their homework. There are notice boards in each common room and at other strategic points throughout the school. The students sleep in their House dormitories, which branch off from the common rooms. Each dormitory gets at least two rooms; one for boys and one for girls (an enchantment prevents boys from entering the girls' area, although there is no spell to prevent the reverse from occurring). Each student sleeps in a large four-poster bed with bed covers and heavy curtains in the House colours, and thick white pillows. There is a bedside table for each bed, and each dormitory has a jug of water and goblets on a tray.

On designated weekends, Hogwarts students in their third year or higher, with a signed permission slip, are permitted to walk to the nearby wizarding village of Hogsmeade, where they can relax and enjoy the pubs, restaurants and shops. There appears to be a good relationship between the school and the village, and the students get on well with the locals. Favourite places in Hogsmeade include Honeydukes Sweetshop, Zonko's Joke Shop, clothing stores such as Gladrags Wizardwear, the Shrieking Shack, rumoured to be the most haunted building in Britain (although this rumour was proven to be false in the third book), the pubs The Three Broomsticks and The Hog's Head, and Madam Puddifoot's coffee shop.

Food

The house-elves at Hogwarts amongst other duties provide all food to students and staff. They cook a wide variety of dishes especially at the feasts. The various dishes are prepared in the kitchens directly below the Great Hall; within the kitchen as four long tables directly aligned with the house tables in the great hall above. At meal times the food is magically transported up, giving the façade of appearing for the students. The majority of the food prepared are traditional British dishes. However the house elves can accommodate to visitors; during the Triwizard Tournament, foreign dishes such as bouillabaisse and blancmange were served. The usual beverages include water, milk, tea, coffee, orange juice, and Pumpkin juice. Butterbeer was served during the Yule Ball.

Discipline and Prefecture

Apart from losing points from a house, serious misdeeds at Hogwarts are punishable by detention.

According to the school caretaker, Argus Filch, detention meant subjection to various forms of corporal punishment until recently. Arthur Weasley claimed still to bear physical scars inflicted by Apollyon Pringle, Filch's predecessor. In present times, however, detention usually involves assisting staff or faculty with tedious tasks. Examples of detention include the one imposed on Harry by Umbridge in Order of the Phoenix. In this case, Harry was forced to write, "I must not tell lies" repeatedly using a magical quill which then carves what is written into the back of the writer's hand. However, sensible teachers at the school never use this cruel punishment. In another case, when Snape caught Harry using the Sectumsempra curse on Malfoy, he was forced to go through over a thousand boxes of files describing wrongdoers at Hogwarts and their punishments. Harry was supposed to order them in alphabetical order, and rewrite the cards whose words were hard to see or otherwise damaged. The Weasley twins Fred and George had a whole drawer of these cards.

For even more serious offences, students may be suspended or even expelled from Hogwarts. Harry and Ron are threatened with expulsion after crashing Ron's car into the Whomping Willow at the start of their second year, and Harry is expelled before the start of his fifth year (although the sentence is quickly changed to a disciplinary hearing) after he is detected using magic in the presence of Muggles, a serious offence among the wizarding community. Dumbledore argued in Harry's defence, stating that it was done in self-defence, and that the Ministry has no authority to expel students – such powers are invested in the Headmaster and the Board of Governors. Snape has attempted to have Harry expelled, and he attempted to have Harry's father, James Potter, expelled when they were at Hogwarts together. The only student known to have been expelled is Hagrid, for the murder of Myrtle with an acromantula believed to be the Monster of Slytherin and for opening the Chamber of Secrets – crimes for which Tom Riddle had framed him.

Professors seem to be able to punish students with relative impunity and can hand out detention, even for unsatisfactory grades. Enforcement of rules outside of class mainly falls to the caretaker, with the assistance of the prefects. A student's Head of House usually has the final say in disciplinary matters. However, during Umbridge's tenure at Hogwarts, she quickly obtains the power to have the final say in disciplinary actions, due to an Educational Decree (one of many) passed by Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge.

In the summer before their fifth year, two fifth year students from each House are picked to be prefects, which grants them privileges and responsibilities and disciplinary responsibilities. The leaders of the student body, the Head Boy and Head Girl, are drawn from the seventh year students. Prefects have the authority to give detentions for infractions.

Grounds

Replica of Hogwarts at Universal Studio's Islands of Adventure amusement park

Hogwarts Castle and its Grounds are home to many secret areas as well as well-known and well-used places.

The hiding place of the Philosopher's Stone

Accessed by entering a trapdoor in the forbidden corridor on the third floor, and protected by a gauntlet of seven magical challenges set up by the teachers.

  • A giant three-headed dog named Fluffy placed specially to guard the trapdoor by Hagrid.
  • Devil's Snare, grown by Professor Sprout.
  • A room containing dozens of keys, charmed by Flitwick to sprout wings and fly near the ceiling. One of these keys will unlock the door to the next section. However, in the film adaptation, the keys attack the seeker of the Stone.
  • A large chessboard with an army of large chessmen, transfigured by McGonagall. To continue to the door on the opposite side, the person in question must beat the chessmen at a game of wizards' chess where the player must risk his life if he loses. Ron and Professor Quirrell are the only wizards to win the game of wizards' chess.
  • A room with a large troll inside. This is Quirrell's challenge. In the book, Quirrell had knocked out his own troll to get to the last room and thus the trio did not have to fight it; in the film, it does not appear, but it appears in the PlayStation One version of the game.
  • A series of potions, brewed by Snape. A logical riddle, not magic, has to be solved. There are two doors, blocked by fire. One potion will allow the person to exit the way he or she arrived, another will allow him or her to continue to the next chamber, two are nettle wine, and the other three are poison. This challenge does not appear in the film, but does in the video game adaptation.
  • The Mirror of Erised can be found in the final chamber, further enchanted by Dumbledore to bestow the Philosopher's Stone upon a seeker only hoping to acquire the stone but not use it for selfish means.

Chamber of Secrets

"Chamber of Secrets" redirects here. For other uses, see Chamber of Secrets (disambiguation).
The Chamber of Secrets as seen in the second film

The Chamber of Secrets, which is deep under the school (most likely under the lake),[26] was home to an ancient Basilisk, intended to be used to purge the school of Muggle-born students. Salazar Slytherin, one of the founders of Hogwarts, built the Chamber before he left the school.

The Chamber is well-hidden and its entrance is in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom on the second floor, which leads down into a dark, slimy stone tunnel. There are many skeletons of small animals littering the floor and even a gigantic skin shed by the Basilisk. The tunnel leads to a solid wall, carved with two entwined serpents with emeralds for eyes.[26] When Parseltongue is spoken they open into a long, dim corridor, lined with monumental statues of snakes, including two towering stone pillars with more carved serpents that brace the ceiling. A colossal statue of Salazar Slytherin, looking ancient and monkey-like, is at the centre. The Basilisk rested inside the statue and emerged from its mouth when the Heir of Slytherin, Tom Riddle, summoned it.[27] In his second year at Hogwarts, Harry uses Parseltongue to open the chamber and destroys the diary containing the embodied memory of a 16-year-old Tom Riddle from his own days at Hogwarts. It is later revealed that the diary was a Horcrux. In Deathly Hallows, Ron and Hermione enter the Chamber. Ron opens the door (despite not speaking Parseltongue) by imitating sounds he heard Harry use to open Slytherin's locket. They find a basilisk fang to use to destroy the Horcrux made from Helga Hufflepuff's cup.

Moaning Myrtle's bathroom contains the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets. The entrance is a sink with a snake scratched onto the tap, opened by speaking Parseltongue. This causes the sink to open into a pipe large enough for a person to slide down it. At the bottom of this chute is a tunnel leading to the Chamber of Secrets. When Tom Riddle opened the Chamber, Myrtle was sulking in a stall. When she heard him, she opened the door, saw the Basilisk, and died immediately, becoming a ghost.[26] Her bathroom remains operational, but is rarely used by students because of Myrtle's disagreeable presence and her habit of flooding it when she is distraught.

Passages

There are usually seven secret passages in and out of the school, and in addition, the series describes the use of twin vanishing cabinets to create another. Filch knows of just four of these while the Marauders (Remus Lupin, Peter Pettrigrew, Sirius Black and James Potter) and the Weasley twins know of all seven, though where some lead is unknown. The Room of Requirement may, on occasion, create an eighth passage out of the school. The only known instance of this occurring is a passage to the Hog's Head bar that formed before the Battle of Hogwarts. Due to the nature of the Room of Requirement, it is possible that several passages to different locations could be accessed from the Room. The passages that Filch does not know about are:

  • A passage beneath the Whomping Willow, leading to the Shrieking Shack.
  • A passage behind a mirror on the fourth floor, which is caved in. It leads to Hogsmeade, but where in Hogsmeade it leads to is unknown.
  • A passage beneath a one-eyed witch statue by the stairs to the Defence Against the Dark Arts classroom, leading to the cellar of Honeydukes. Speaking aloud the word 'Dissendium' to the witch allows access to this passage; the hump on the statue then opens and reveals the hidden passageway.
  • Numerous 'short-cuts' that lead from one part of the castle to another. These are often concealed in such fashions as a tapestry which hides a hole in the wall.

A further link between two vanishing cabinets, one in the school and the other in Borgin and Burkes in Knockturn Alley presumably worked until Chamber of Secrets when Peeves (persuaded by Nearly Headless Nick) smashed the Hogwarts cabinet. The passage was reopened in Half-Blood Prince when Draco Malfoy fixed the cabinet. This passage is not shown on the Marauder's Map as it is not part of the castle itself.

Room of Requirement

On the seventh floor opposite an enormous tapestry depicting Barnabas the Barmy attempting to train trolls for the ballet, the Room of Requirement appears only when someone is in need of it. To make it appear, one must walk past its hidden entrance three times while concentrating on what is needed. The room will then appear, outfitted with whatever is required. To the Hogwarts house-elves, it is also known as the Come and Go Room.

Dumbledore was first to mention the room, noting that he discovered it at five-thirty in the morning, filled with chamber pots when he was trying to find a toilet. However, Dumbledore did not appear to know the Room's secrets. Dobby later told Harry of the Room in detail and admitted to frequently bringing Winky to the room to cure her bouts of Butterbeer-induced drunkenness, finding it full of antidotes and a "nice elf-sized bed." Filch was said to find cleaning supplies here when he had run out; when Fred and George Weasley needed a place to hide, it would appear as a broom cupboard. Trelawney also makes a habit of using it to hide her empty sherry bottles after she is sacked in Order of the Phoenix. It would seem that when one wishes to hide something it produces the same room for everyone: the Room of Hidden Things, which is full of many centuries worth of abandoned objects, such as broken furniture, books, and in one case a dead quintaped (for more information see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them), which were presumably forgotten by their owners.

Harry learned of the room's abilities from Dobby, finding it the perfect location for his Dumbledore's Army meetings, during which it would be filled with bookcases full of Defence Against the Dark Arts volumes, many different kinds of Dark Detectors, and a plethora of floor cushions for practising defensive spells. When the D.A. was betrayed, the room was left open, and Pansy Parkinson was able to retrieve the list of members of the organisation. In Half-Blood Prince Harry used the Room of Hidden Things to stash his copy of Advanced Potion-Making, describing it as the size of a large cathedral and packed to overflowing with items hidden by Hogwarts inhabitants over the years, such as old potions, clothing, ruined furniture, an old tiara (which happened to be one of Voldemort's Horcruxes), or books which were "no doubt banned or graffitied or stolen." He later realised that Draco had been using the room in that state to hide and repair the Vanishing Cabinet to use it to smuggle Death Eaters into Hogwarts. Ironically, while Harry tries many times to get into the Room of Requirement to see what Malfoy is doing, the only time he succeeds to get into the room (and he is not thinking about Malfoy), he gains access to the room where Malfoy has been working.

In Deathly Hallows, the students who need a place to hide from the Carrows, two Death Eater professors, use the room. It is also revealed that the Room of Requirement's current version can change while still occupied, though should a completely different version be required (e.g. the Room of Hidden Things instead of DA Headquarters) the room must be empty. The Room can also answer to the desire of the wizard within the room, such as providing Harry with a whistle when he needed one during a Dumbledore's Army meeting, or creating a passage to the Hog's Head (as the room cannot produce food). Later, Ravenclaw's diadem is found to be one of Voldemort's Horcruxes and has been hidden in the Room of Hidden Things by Voldemort. Harry, Ron, and Hermione enter the Room, with Harry knowing that he must look for a place to hide things, and find the tiara; but they are ambushed by Draco, Crabbe and Goyle. The diadem is finally destroyed when Crabbe fills this version of the Room with what Hermione believes to have been Fiendfyre; a destructive magical fire. It is not known if the room continues to function after the events of Deathly Hallows; Ron expresses concern that it may have been ruined in all of its forms by the cursed fire.

Forbidden Forest

The Forbidden Forest is a large, dark forest in the boundaries of the school grounds. It is usually referred to simply as "the Forest" and in the film series as the "Dark Forest". It is strictly forbidden to all students, except during Care of Magical Creatures lessons and, on rare occasions, detentions.

Among the plant species within the Forest are trees such as beech, oak, pine, sycamore, yew and knotgrass and thorn undergrowth. Though the Forest is vastly dense and wild, there are a few paths and clearings. Hagrid, who frequently travels into the Forest for various reasons, mostly makes these trails. The Forest is also home to an assortment of creatures. The following is an incomplete list of beasts that inhabit the forest:[28]

  • A herd of at least fifty Centaurs, including Bane, Magorian, Ronan, and Firenze.
  • A colony of Acromantula, Aragog and his family.
  • Unicorns
  • Thestrals
  • Trolls
  • Bowtruckles
  • Fluffy, a three-headed dog who was released into the forest after the events of Philosopher's Stone.[29]
  • Grawp, a small giant, lived in the Forest during Order of the Phoenix. Dumbledore later arranged for him to move up to the mountains surrounding Hogwarts and live in a big cave, where he is "much happier than he was in the Forest"
  • While not a "creature" or "beast", Arthur Weasley's enchanted Ford Anglia made its home in the forest during the Chamber of Secrets, eventually rescuing Harry and Ron from the acromantula colony.

Hogwarts Express

The GWR 4900 Class 5972 Olton Hall, the steam engine used in the film series as the Hogwarts Express.

The Hogwarts Express is a magical train that carries students non-stop from Platform 9¾ at King's Cross station in London to Hogsmeade Station, near Hogwarts. Prefects of the school ride in a separate carriage near the front of the train. The compartments on the train appear to be lettered; in Half-Blood Prince, the "Slug Club" meets in compartment C. In Philosopher's Stone, Harry meets his two best friends, Ron and Hermione, on his first ride on the Hogwarts Express. In the books, he has been on the train ten times: twice each in the first, third, fourth, and fifth books, and once each in the second (in which he and Ron arrive instead in a flying car) and the sixth (which ends before Harry leaves Hogwarts).

The steam engine used in the film adaptations is the GWR 4900 Class 5972 Olton Hall, but it was not the first locomotive to be disguised as the Hogwarts Express. To promote the books, the Southern Railway locomotive Taw Valley was repainted and renamed temporarily, but was rejected by Chris Columbus as looking 'too modern' for the film. Filming locations for the Hogwarts Express sequences include Goathland on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Kings Cross railway station and the route of the Jacobite Express which follows the West Highland Line from Fort William to Mallaig in Scotland, as it crosses the Glenfinnan Viaduct.[30]

Several model trains have been made of the Hogwarts Express. An 00 gauge is produced by Hornby, though this is of a Castle Class locomotive rather than the Hall Class used in the films. A three-rail H0 gauge model is produced by Märklin, and a two-rail H0/00 was produced in the early 2000s by Bachmann. Several now-discontinued L gauge models have been produced by LEGO. Lionel has released an O gauge set in their 2007 catalogue and a G gauge set for 2008.

Hogwarts in translations of the Harry Potter books

Most translations keep the name 'Hogwarts', transcribing it if necessary (for example Arabic هوغوورتس = Hūghwūrts, Russian Хогвартс = Khogvarts, Japanese ホグワーツ = Hoguwātsu, Bengali হগওয়ার্টস = Hogowarts, Greek Χόγκουαρτς = Hóguarts), but some translate or otherwise adapt it (French Poudlard (lard = "bacon"), Latvian Cūkkārpas shortened from cūka = "pig" + kārpas = "warts", Dutch Zweinstein modified from zwijnsteen = "pig rock" while simultaneously referencing Albert Einstein, Norwegian Bokmål Galtvort (Nynorsk keeps "Hogwarts"), Finnish Tylypahka (pahka = "wart"), Hungarian Roxfort (playing with the name of Oxford), Slovenian Bradavičarka (bradavice = "warts")), Czech Bradavice means simply "warts". The Ancient Greek translation of the school is "Ὑογοήτου Παιδευτήριον τὸ τῆς Γοητείας καὶ Μαγείας", loosely translating to "Hogwizard's School of Wizardry and Magic", Ὑογοήτου replacing "Hogwarts" and derived from the ancient Greek words ὑo- (hog) and γοητής (wizard).

See also

References

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  12. ^ Rowling, J.K. "How do you remember everything from different books when you are still writing the HP series?". J.K.Rowling,com. Archived from the original on 5 February 2012. Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  13. ^ "About the Books: transcript of J.K. Rowling's live interview on Scholastic.com". Scholastic (Via Accio Quote). 16 October 2000. 
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  15. ^ Karen Lindell (2007). "Magical experience for Harry Potter fans". Ventura County Star. Retrieved 31 October 2007. 
  16. ^ a b "J.K.Rowling Official Site". p. F.A.Q. – About the Books. Archived from the original on 28 August 2011. Retrieved 2 September 2013. "Everyone who shows magical ability before their eleventh birthday will automatically gain a place at Hogwarts; there is no question of not being 'magical enough'; you are either magical or you are not." 
  17. ^ "J.K.Rowling Official Site". p. Extras – Miscellaneous. Archived from the original on 8 February 2012. Retrieved 2 September 2013. "Squibs would not be able to attend Hogwarts as students." 
  18. ^ "Accio-quote.org". Accio-quote.org. 3 February 2000. Retrieved 16 July 2011. 
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  22. ^ 2011 "Pottermore". Retrieved 22 April 2012. 
  23. ^ a b by: Melissa. "J.K. Rowling Web Chat Transcript". The Leaky Cauldron. Retrieved 16 July 2011. 
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  25. ^ "Pottermore". Retrieved 22 April 2012. 
  26. ^ a b c Chamber of Secrets, Chapter 16
  27. ^ Chamber of Secrets, Chapter 17
  28. ^ Rowling, J. K. (Newt Scamander; 2001). Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (in English). London: Bloomsbury/New York City: Scholastic, et al. ISBN 0613325419.
  29. ^ Peter, Blue (March 2001). "Interview transcript (partial)". BBC (via Accio Quote). Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  30. ^ "Harry Potter Express". steamtrain.info. Archived from the original on 13 August 2008. Retrieved 2 September 2013. 

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