ogwarts 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 Potterseries.
Rowling has suggested that she may have inadvertently taken the name from the hogwort plant (Croton capitatus), which she had seen at Kew Gardenssome time before writing the series, although the names "The Hogwarts" and "Hoggwart" appear in the 1954 Nigel Molesworth book How To Be Topp byGeoffrey Willans.
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.
- 2 Admission
- 3 Arrival
- 4 Houses
- 5 Terms and holidays
- 6 Subjects and teachers
- 7 Grading and assessment
- 8 Student life
- 9 Grounds
- 10 Hogwarts Express
- 11 Hogwarts in translations of the Harry Potter books
- 12 See also
- 13 References
- 14 External links
School location and informationEditHogwarts as Depicted in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.A studio model of Hogwarts at Leavesden Studios used in the film adaptations.
In the novels, Hogwarts is somewhere in Scotland. (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. Such people 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. Witches and wizards cannot Apparate orDisapparate 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 and are powered by magic.
Hogwarts is a coeducational, secondary boarding school, taking children from ages eleven to eighteen. 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. 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.
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.
It is unclear how Hogwarts is funded. In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince Tom Riddle says that he cannot afford to go to Hogwarts, to which Albus Dumbledore replies, "There is a fund at Hogwarts for those who require assistance to buy books and robes," as students are required to buy their own textbooks, uniform, and other supplies. The Ministry of Magic's efforts to take control of the school in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix imply that it is a publicly funded school, though no mention of where the Ministry receives its funds is made.
Rowling has said that Hogwarts is "a multifaith school".
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 to Hogwarts is selective, in that children who show magical ability will automatically gain a place, and squibscannot attend the school as students (though they can work there in other roles, as Argus Filch does). A magical quill at Hogwarts detects the birth of magical children and writes their names into a large parchment book, but there is noadmission test because "you are either magical or you are not." 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.
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 inQuidditch.
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.
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,
|“||The Sorting is a very important ceremony because, while you are here, your House will be something like your family within Hogwarts. You will have classes with the rest of your House, sleep in your House dormitory, and spend free time in your House common room.||”|
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.
HousesEditThe 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 andHelga 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.
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 houseghost 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 located in one of the castle's highest towers, the entrance to which 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.
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. 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).
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 located 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 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. 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, located 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.
Terms and holidaysEdit
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 teachersEditMain article: Hogwarts staff
Being a school of magic, many subjects at Hogwarts differ from the studies of a typical school. Some subjects, such asHistory 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 Runesand Care of Magical Creatures. "Very specialised subjects such as alchemy are sometimes offered in the final two years, if there is sufficient demand."