We’ve all thought about it. We’ve all wondered what would happen and as horrible as it would be, we all have an inkling of hope that it will happen: a battle at Hogwarts. How would it occur, though, and who would win? First we will have to look at how the Death Eaters would enter the grounds, and then we will look at the defenses the school offers its students.
The DE will not likely march up the driveway of Hogwarts, wands raised, (although it is a possibility), but instead they will try to enter stealthily by other means. The two ways that come to mind are through the Forbidden Forest or by means of the lake. The forest seems like an easy way to Hogwarts right? Just imagine twenty or so DE marching through destroying any monster that gets in their way. That shouldn’t be the case, though. We have learned through reading GoF and OotP that the creatures, specifically those with XXXX ratings or higher (see Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them) are impervious to spells.
The Acromantula in the maze in GoF doesn’t stun easily and Harry is almost bitten. Hagrid, a half giant, takes stunning spell after stunning spell without any real effect. And as we all know there is a SMALL 100% giant now living in the forest named Grawp and he might be getting a female buddy in the near future, too! Wonder how spells will affect them? Then there is a small colony of Centaurs who currently dislike any wizard in “their” forest. Wizards are likely very powerful foes for the Centaurs, but they are still human and I’m pretty sure those arrows would hurt a lot. And, finally, there is the small matter of Hagrid knowing and befriending many of the creatures inside the forest. Can you imagine the entire swarm of Acromantula hunting and attacking the DE? It seems that the forest would be more effort then it’s worth. So, that leaves the Lake.
The lake is not without its own nuisances. The Giant Squid, although a gentle giant throughout the entire series, is there, I’m sure, for other reasons. I wonder what those tentacles could to a person. And then there are the Mer-people, but, as we know, they are scared of wands and wizards.
So the squid, as powerful as it most likely is, is the only obstacle, and could be overcome eventually by the DE. Then they could enter by means of the first years route across the lake and underneath the school. My reasoning for this is that most, if not all, of the current DE went to Hogwarts, so they would easily know this route. And it would take them right to the doorstep of Hogwarts.
As I was reading the duel between Dumbledore and Voldemort in OotP, something struck me about the way Dumbledore enchanted and moved the statues in the fountain. With that said, let’s look at what the DE will face once inside the school. Have you ever wondered what the school, not the occupants, would do if under attack? There are the menacing statues of hogs that guard the doors. I can imagine them jumping from their pedestals and charging the DE. Maybe they have powers similar to the Tebo (see Fantastic Beasts And Where to Find Them). Maybe they areTebos. Then there are the many knights suits: if called on to guard the castle, what would they be capable of doing? Swords slashing, axes flying, what could our Christmas caroling knights truly be capable of?
Next are the paintings, the spies of the school. I imagine that some of them have an enchantment that is very similar to the one that Sirius’ mother has on her painting. Able to warn those who are under attack it would be hard for someone unwanted to go unnoticed. Then there are the Gargoyles that stand guard outside the teachers’ lounge and Dumbledore’s office. Can you imagine them fighting? That would be intimidating. Gargoyles are said to have immense strength and are impervious to most spells. They were thought to serve as guardians of buildings.
And finally the last defense the school has to save itself are the moving staircases. How many move, we’re not sure of, but what if they stopped moving somewhere between the switch? You would have some stranded DEs.
What then could the occupants of Hogwarts do to fight? We’ll start with the second most powerful beings in the school, the House Elves. We’ve all seen Dobby in action. He can Apparate within Hogwarts, so I imagine that the rest of them can, too. They have their own brand of magic which is supposedly powerful in itself. Although JKR says that doesnt mean that wizard magic isnt powerful, if you pair the House Elves’ magic with their loyalty to the school, they will be a force to be reckoned with. They will be willing to die for their master and the security of the great house that is Hogwarts. Kamakazi elves, if you will.
That brings us to the next group of beings, the Ghosts. Up until now we’re still not sure how powerful they can be, if powerful at all. But they would also make for good alerts to the others.
Finally, we all know what the teachers and the students could be capable of. Imagine Professor Flitwick pulling a Yoda during a duel, only with a wand instead of a light saber. Or the things Professor McGonagall could transfigure. And the students, I just imagine them going crazy. Scared and cornered they would throw every jinx and spell they could muster.
If this Battle happens, I think it will be in the last book and, more specifically, will prelude the final battle between Harry and Voldemort. It will be epic and involve all the characters we have met up until now. Good and bad, the sides will be chosen and the war will be under way. I just hope Hogwarts isn’t too bad off in the end.