Seven Magical Facts We Learned From Pottermore’s Update
Pottermore’s highly anticipated update may have taken away our interactive scavenger hunt for information, but that only makes the finds that much more satisfying. I dug deep to find the juiciest bits of information squirreled away in Pottermore’s new design and was not disappointed. Here’s what I found out.
1. James Potter’s parents are NOT Charlus and Dorea Potter.
For years, Potter fans have wondered whether or not James Potter and Sirius Black were distantly related because of a genealogy chart released in 2006 by J.K. Rowling. According to the Black family tree, Sirius’s grandaunt Dorea married a man named Charlus Potter, and the pair had one son, not named. Dorea is listed as dying in 1977, which conveniently coincides with James’s seventh and final year of Hogwarts. Unfortunately for the two quasi-brothers, they were not related. JKR’s new information on the Potter family states that James’s parents were Fleamont and Euphemia Potter. With a name like Fleamont, it’s no wonder James and Lily decided to name their son after James’s grandfather.
2. Harry’s ancestors are responsible for a lot of popular potions.
Incidentally, Fleamont Potter was the wizard who created Sleekeazy’s Hair Potion, which is what Hermione used to make her hair less unruly in Goblet of Fire. Fleamont came from a long line of potion-makers, the very first of whom, Linfred of Stinchcombe, created the earliest incarnations of Skele-Gro and the Pepperup Potion.
3. Being a pure-blood means being afraid of pigs.
Pure-bloods apparently have certain characteristics that half-bloods and Muggle-borns do not. Being able to do magic before three years old, showing excellent flying skills before age seven, and a fear or distrust of pigs were chief signs of pure-blood status, according to the “Pure-Blood” entry. Apparently, pigs are the most “non-magical” of all animals, and they are “notoriously difficult to charm.”
4. Florean Fortescue was killed because he knew too much.
JKR originally wanted to use the ice cream shop owner to give Harry clues about the Deathly Hallows, but she eventually found better ways to divulge the information. In Deathly Hallows, Fortescue is captured and later revealed to have been killed. JKR’s writing suggests that the man knew too much about Voldemort’s Horcruxes to be left alive.
5. Throughout all seven books, wands are only used 763 times.
This number seems shocking, given that the books are about a boy who relies on his magic wand to do things. Now, if the number of times wands were used in the books were distributed evenly, it might make more sense. After all, 100 instances of wand usage per book sounds about right. The real numbers are even more shocking since Book 1 only had 17 instances of wand usage! I’m betting most of them happened at Ollivanders.
6. There is a political movement called FART.
Wizards aren’t the best at keeping up with Muggle fashions, even though they are required by the Ministry of Magic to dress inconspicuously when among Muggles. Some wizards, however, don’t believe that the Ministry should be able to dictate what they are and are not allowed to wear, so they created the fringe movement FART (Fresh Air Refreshes Totally). The members of this group deliberately dress in unusual getups in order to openly disregard the Statute of Secrecy.
7. JKR thinks of Hagrid and Dumbledore as Harry’s ideal father-figures.
Under the “Alchemy” writing, JKR states that she sees Hagrid and Dumbledore as two sides of the perfect father figure for Harry. Hagrid is the “warm, practical and wild” side to Dumbledore’s “impressive, intellectual and somewhat detached” side. The tie-in to alchemy was the inspiration for the two men’s first names corresponding to the colors red (Rubeus) and white (Albus) that crop up throughout alchemical history. It seems MuggleNet staff member Aaron agrees with JKR’s choice!
These are only a few of the interesting interesting things I found on Pottermore. Which of them did you know? Have you found anything else interesting in your explorations? Tell us in the comments below!