Joined: 04 December 2010
1. As of 2008, Harry Potter books have sold over 400 million copies and have been translated into 67 languages.
2. A picture of Gandalf the Grey (from The Lord of the Rings) can be seen in the collection of great wizards in Professor Dumbledore's study in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
3. Author J. K. Rowling recently revealed that Dumbledore is gay and he had a crush on the wizard Grindelwald, whom he later defeated in a wizard duel.
4. As every Potter fan knows, Dementors are deadly, magical, wraith-like creatures. Rowling revealed that they represent depression and that they were based on her own experience with the disease. The remedy to lighten the effects of a Dementor is chocolate.e
5. Rowling is the first person to become a billionaire (U.S. dollars) by writing books.
6. The death of Rowling's mother from multiple sclerosis significantly influenced her writing, and death is a major theme throughout the Potter series.
7. The actress who played Moaning Myrtle is actually 37 years old and is the oldest actress to portray a Hogwarts student.
8. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was released on July 21, 2007, and sold 11 million copies on the first day of its release, breaking Rowling's earlier records for the fastest selling book of all time.
9. Rowling said that if she were to be a teacher at Hogwarts, she would teach Charms. If she had a job in the wizarding world, she would write spell books.
10.. Harry Potter's pet snowy owl, Hedwig, shares her name with two famous saints. One is Saint Hedwig of Andechs (1174-1243), a former duchess noted for her benevolence and compassionate nature. The other is Saint Hedwig, Queen of Poland (1373-1399). The death of Hedwig in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows represents Harry's loss of innocence and coming of age.
11. In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, dragon blood is revealed to be an effective oven cleaner.
12. Rowling's books were the first children's books included on the New York Bestseller list since E.B. White's Charlotte's Web in 1952.
13. Several publishers rejected the first Harry Potter manuscript saying it was too long and literary, but Bloomsbury Publisher finally accepted it in 1996. The book's publisher suggested Rowling use the name "J. K." rather than her real name "Joanne Rowling" to appeal to male readers. She took the "K" from her grandmother's name Kathleen, but neither "Kathleen" nor "K" is part of her legal name.
14. A few scholars have suggested that the Harry Potter series is sexist because the three most powerful figures are male, females use their power in ways that make them less appealing than the males, and Hermione is less powerful and less poised than the boys. Other scholars say those claims are unfounded.
15. Colors play an important role in the Harry Potter novels. For example, shades of red represent goodness, such as Gryffindor's scarlet robes, Harry's red ink, and the crimson Hogwarts Express train. The Weasleys have red hair and a red roof. Green is largely associated with negative events, such as when Harry sees a flash of green when his parents die and the green-colored curse that made Ron vomit.
16. Numbers are symbolic in the series, especially 2, 3, 4, and 7. For example, the trio of Harry, Ron, and Hermione suggest the power of three and the spiritual trinity. Harry fatally wounds the basilisk on its third strike, and Hagrid knocks on the front door of Hogwarts three times. Students attend Hogwarts for seven years and there are seven players on each Quidditch. Sirius is also imprisoned on the seventh floor of Hogwarts.
17. Rowling said her favorite beast in the series is the phoenix, a mythical sacred bird who ignites into flames when it reaches 500 or 1,000 years old only to emerge from the flames as a new and young phoenix.
18.The name Voldemort comes from the French words meaning "fly from death," and his entire goal is to conquer death. In the second Harry Potter novel, Rowling shows us that "I am Lord Voldemort" is an anagram of "Tom Marvolo Riddle," which is his actual full name.
19. Cedric Diggory is one of four students to die in Rowling's novels. Cedric is a common Welsh name, and Diggory is the name of the professor in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe who traveled to Narnia where he picked an apple to save his mother. The seeds from the apple grew into a tree from which the wardrobe was made.
20. Rowling said she may have inadvertently taken the name of Harry's school, "Hogwarts," from a hogwort plant she saw in the Kew Gardens in New York City.
21. So many fans visit King's Cross station to take pictures of platforms 9 and 10 that the station management erected a sign that says "Platform 9 " which, in the Potter books, is invisible to Muggles but acts as a gateway for witches and wizards.
22. Voldemort's wand is made of yew. Yew is seen by some as having immense supernatural power and being a symbol of death and rebirth, the same immortality that Voldemort seeks. Historically, nearly all wizards have used a magical wand of some sort that channels a wizard's power and acts a symbol of authority (such as a shepherd's staff).
23. Golgomath (one of the largest giants in the Potter universe) may be a play on the word "googol," a math term for a one with a hundred zeros after it'in other words, one of the largest numbers known.
24. Rowling said that when she took an online Sorting Hat quiz, it sorted her into Hufflepuff, one of the four houses of Hogwarts.
25. Rowling said if she could take Polyjuice Potion for an hour, she would become Prime Minister Tony Blair. She also said that she would be dreadful at playing Quidditch as she is "not sporty," "not great with heights," and is "clumsy."
26. Harry's godfather's name, Sirius Black, comes from the name of one of the brightest stars in the sky, the "Dog Star" or Sirius (from the Greek word seirios, meaning "burning"). The star is a symbol of the goddess Isis and was central to the religion and philosophy of Egypt.
27. Sirius Black's tattoos are borrowed from Russian prison gangs. The markings identify the person as someone to be feared and respected.
28. Albus Wulfric Percival Brian Dumbledore is Dumbledore's full name. Dumbledore is an Old English word meaning "bumblebee." Albus is Latin for "white," and Wulfric was the name of a twelfth-century saint who became a deeply holy man after seeing a homeless man in the street. Percival was a knight of King Arthur's Round Table and may also mean "pierce the veil," suggesting an ability to return from the dead. Brian is a Celtic name, meaning "strong."
29. Hogwarts wizards use cauldrons (from the Latin calere meaning "to be warm" or hot, and which is related to "calorie") to create potions. Mundungus (from archaic Spanish for "stinky tobacco") Fletcher was known to peddle stolen pots. Cauldrons are one of the oldest and most widely known symbols of magic'older, for example, than broomsticks. In fact, people once believed that witches flew in cauldrons.
30. The Death Eaters were originally known as the Knights of Walpurgis, which is a reversal of "Walpurgis Night," the name of an old witch's holiday on April 30th celebrating springtime'exactly six months from Halloween.
31. The divination textbook used at Hogwarts was written by "Cassandra Vablatsky." Her last name refers to a real woman, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky who founded the Theosophical Society. Cassandra was the daughter of the rulers of Troy (Priam and Hecuba) who was cursed by Apollo to prophecy the truth but never to be believed.
32. The Hogwarts school motto is Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus which is Latin for "Never Tickle a Sleeping Dragon." In the novels, the school is located somewhere in Scotland and has various charms to make it appear as an old ruin to muggle eyes.
33. Hogwarts was founded 1,000 years ago by Godric Gryffindor (fire/lion), Salazar Slytherin (water/serpent), Helga Hufflepuff (earth/badger), and Rowena Ravenclaw (air/raven). Its crest includes each of the animal representations of the four founders.
34. Early in the series' history, the Harry Potter books received positive reviews; however, later books were criticized as bland and clich.
35. Rowling says the idea of Harry Potter just "strolled into her head" during a four-hour train delay.
36. The driver and conductor of the Knight Bus, Ernie and Stanley, are named after Rowling's grandfathers.
37. In 2003, members of the Jesus Non-Denominational Church in Greenville, Michigan, publicly demonstrated their concern over what they perceived to be evil in the Harry Potter books by gathering around a bonfire and burning Rowling's books. In the Middle Ages, when books were rare, burning them was a radical statement.
38. Most parent protests against the books include arguments that the books glorify witchcraft, encourage children to break rules and defy authority, and dwell on dark themes and death. But other parents argue in favor of the books, saying they serve as a mirror for finding a young child's full potential.
39.The ghost Nearly-Headless Nick was beheaded because of a botched dentistry job. He was trying to straighten Lady Grieve's teeth but instead she sprouted a tusk. When his head was on the block the executioner swung his axe 45 times but still didn't completely remove it from Nick's neck.
40.The secret code Arthur Weasley must dial into a telephone keypad to access the Ministry of Magic is 62442. The letters underneath those numbers on a standard phone spell out the word MAGIC.
41- Dean Thomas's father was killed by Death Eaters when he refused to join them. Neither Dean nor his mother know.
42- Bellatrix was sexually attracted to Voldemort, and he was always her true love, not her husband.
43- It is illegal to apparate between countries, but travel by portkey is allowed if both countries give permission.
44- Hagrid created Blast-Ended Skrewts
45- Peeves was never a living person. He is not a ghost but an indestructible spirit of chaos, who can unscrew chandeliers, throw walking sticks, and generally cause mayhem.
46-Natalie McDonald, who appears on page 159 of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, was a real person. She was a nine-year-old girl from Toronto, Canada, who was dying of leukemia. She wrote to Rowling asking what was going to happen in the next Harry Potter book, as she would not live long enough to read it. Rowling emailed back, but Natalie had died a day earlier. In tribute, she became a first-year student at Hogwarts named by the Sorting Hat in Gryffindor. When Rowling was later in Canada for a promotional tour she visited the McDonald family.
47-PROFESSOR Flitwick is so short because he has goblin ancestry, probably through his great-great-great-grandfather.
48-More than 16,000 children in the U.K. and U.S. auditioned for the role of Harry Potter.
49-Harry's infamous scar has been put on by makeup approx 5,800 times. This is not only on Daniel Radcliffe, who has had the scar applied approx 2,000 times, but also on his doubles and stunt doubles, all of whom wear the scar.
50-Harry and Ron will never read Hogwarts, A History.
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