15 Mind Blowing Facts About 'Harry Potter' That Will Change The Way You See The Series
If you're not a Harry Potter fan (you should be, FYI), then it probably doesn't make any sense to you why us Hogwarts wannabes re-read the series over and over again. I have a mile-long list of books I want to read, but I keep going back to this wizarding series ever because, regardless of how many times I've read it, there's always something new to catch. Not to mention the fandom is still so strong that our queen J.K. Rowling routinely drops mind blowing facts about Harry Potter that influence the series every time I read it.
The best part is that these facts don't necessarily make the series better; they simply add new depth to what is already an incredible story. Further history of characters, learning the fate of others, and seeing your favorite Gryffindors' futures mapped out can change how you felt about certain chapters of the books. Rowling is no stranger to writing twists and always loved to keep us readers guessing and second-guessing ourselves, so it makes even more sense that she would drop so much Harry Potter knowledge even when it's been almost a decade since the final book was released. But with the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child script debuting this summer, now's the perfect time to learn some facts about your favorite series before re-reading it again. (And again.)
1. Harry And Voldemort Are Related
I know, but let's hear the queen out on this, OK? J.K. Rowling held a web chat back in 2007, and revealed that "Yes, Harry and Voldemort are distantly related through the Peverells." Because Voldemort had the resurrection stone and Harry had the invisibility cloak, it makes sense that the two were related by their relatives' posession of two of the three deathly hallows. But don't panic too much. "Peverell blood would run through many wizarding families," Rowling also noticed.
2. Hermione Should Have Married Harry
Mind. Blown. Hermione and Ron seem to have such a connection through the entire series, but apparently Rowling wishes she would've paired Harry and Hermione together in the end. (Although that dance scene in Deathly Hallows should've tipped all of us off.) According to The Sunday Times, Rowling thought that their relationship wasn't credible, and that she made the choice because she was "clinging to the plot as I first imagined it."
3. Dumbledore Was Gay
Dumbledore being gay shouldn't make you feel differently about him, but it does explain his relationship with Grindelwald which could definitely change the way you read the series. In 2007, Rowling announced that the Hogwarts Headmaster was gay and, unfortunately, it's a decision she's had to defend over and over according to The Telegraph.
4. Aunt Petunia Longed To Be A Witch
On the Harry Potter site, Pottermore, J.K. Rowling wrote an essay about the history of Harry's Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon. In the story, Rowling writes that Aunt Petunia had longed to show signs of magic, and was incredibly jealous of her sister. Petunia never told Vernon about these feelings, and buried them deep inside.
5. Tonks & Lupin Died To Echo Harry's Life
I think the most devastating deaths to me in the Harry Potter series are Tonk and Lupin's. Not only were their characters two of my favorites, but they also had an infant son, Teddy, who became an orphan with their death. Apparently that was done on purpose. Rowling told Meredith Vieira in an interview that she "wanted there to be an echo of what happened to Harry just to show the absolute evil of what Voldemort's doing."
6. Hermione Broke A Ministry Law With Her Purse
You know that incredible bag Hermione has in Deathly Hallows that carries everything she, Ron, and Harry could possibly need, but is the size of a clutch? Apparently the charm she uses, the Extension Charm, is illegal according to the Ministry of Magic because of its likelihood of being abused. I always knew Hermione had a bit of a bad girl streak in her.
7. The Dementors Represented J.K. Rowling's Depression
The dementors are some of the creepiest things to be introduced to the Harry Potter series, but their inspiration is just as upsetting. Rowling has stated that she battled depression in her 20s, and the dementors were created as a representation of that "hollowed-out feeling."
8. Azkaban Was Once A Place Of Torture
You thought Azkaban was just creepy because it was a prison for dark wizards and witches and guarded by dementors, but the origin of Azkaban is so much worse. A sorceror once used a concealment charm on the island to hide Azkaban as he lured muggle sailors to be tortured and killed. Turns out the least frightening part of Azkaban is the dementors.
9. Professor Trelawney Has A Drinking Problem
It's no secret that the divinations professor at Hogwarts wasn't exactly professional, but apparently she had a bit of a drinking problem. Rowling wrote on Pottermore that Sybill Trelawney had an over-reliance on alcohol, due partly to her self-confidence issues with her other co-workers and staying cooped up in her tower.
10. Arthur Weasley Was Supposed To Die
As if she didn't want to kill off enough of our favorite Weasleys, apparently Rowling intended for Arthur Weasley to die. Eventually, she replaced his death with the deaths of Lupin and Tonks at the end of the series because Arthur Weasley was "the only good father in the whole series."
11. Muggles Can't Create Potions
All potions require some wand work, so there's no way any muggle can create potions.
12. Dumbledore Saw His Entire Family In The Mirror Of Erised
One of my favorite Potter things to discuss with friends of the series is the Mirror of Erised. I am always incredibly curious about what others would see, and was extremely happy to hear what Dumbledore would've seen in the mirror — his entire family together and his brother, Aberforth, reconciled to him. Not Voldemort gone or anything to do with Hogwarts.
13. Lily Did Have Feelings For Snape
It's never really explained in the books if Lily reciprocated Snape's feelings for her, but Rowling has said that Lily did have feelings for him. "She might have even grown to love him romantically (she certainly loved him as a friend) if he had not loved dark magic so much," said Rowling.
14. Hermione Smells Ron's Hair In The Amortentia Potion
In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Hermione correctly identifies amortentia as the most powerful love potion in the world and notes that it smells different for everybody, according to what attracts them. She mentions that she smells fresh cut grass and parchment paper in the books, but never identifies the third smell. Rowling has said that the third smell Hermione notices is the smell of Ron's hair. Ugh. My heart.
15. If He Could Go Back, Snape Would Have Never Become A Death-Eater
Arguably, the fact that changes the series the most for me is this one . If he could go back, Snape would never have become a death-eater. Rowling has said that he only did so because he thought it would impress Lily and he desperately wanted to be part of something big and powerful. Although I've always thought Snape was a good man underneath it all, I thought for sure he still craved the dark arts, despite what it did to Lily. Hearing this fact from Rowling really changed my entire outlook on the series.