10 Facts About Harry Potter #5

I think it’s about time that I did another 10 Facts About Harry Potter – don’t you? It’s been a while since I last did one, which is a pity as I really enjoy HP Trivia. I have written four other Ten Facts About HP, which you can read over here

This Ten Facts is pretty exciting, as it will total my facts to 50 overall, counting all 5 of my posts. However, having already written 40 facts, I have to really dig further through the hidden depths of the Potterverse to find some more trivia. 

Therefore, I’d love to hear any facts about Harry Potter that YOU have. It could be something you read about online, a fact you found out in Warner Bros Studio/Universal, or just some really interesting trivia you know! Just drop a comment below, and I’ll feature some of the facts that appear in the comments in my next post! Thanks, and I hope you enjoy Ten Facts About Harry Potter #5!

  1. Ron’s Patronus is a Jack Russel Terrier. Pretty cool, seeing as Jack Russel Terriers have a reputation for chasing otters…which as you may or may not know is Hermione’s Patronus. I’m not a Ronmione shipper, but you have to admit that this is pretty cute.
  2. J.K Rowling herself was actually sorted into Hufflepuff, on her Pottermore quiz. 
  3. When the Death Eaters originally formed, they were actually called the Knights of Walpurgis. Ehh…I’m not sure, I think Death Eaters has a better ring to it, don’t you?
  4. (This isn’t really a fact, more of a theory-kinda thing, but it was soo interesting I just HAD to feature it here!) Evans, as in Lily Evans, is almost Snape backwards, right? The only real thing preventing it from being Snape backwards is the letter ‘P’ or the ‘V’. And if you remember, the only people keeping Snape from being with Lily was Voldemort – ‘V’ for Voldemort – and James Potter – ‘P’ for Potter. Pretty cool, huh?
  5. J.K. didn’t just choose Kings Cross as the Hogwarts station for any old reason. Kings Cross has a special meaning to her, it was the place where her mother and her father first met, aged 18. To her, Kings Cross is one of the most magical, romantic places.
  6. As a child, J.K Rowling was good friends with the children of a family with the surname Potter. She’d always loved the surname Potter. She often got teased for the surname Rowling and people would call her nicknames – such as ‘rolling pin’, and she’d preferred the name Potter much more than Rowling.
  7. Throughout the films, three different owls played the role of Hedwig – Gizmo, Ook and Sprout. 
  8. In the movie of the Philosopher’s Stone, Harry loses a chocolate frog, because it jumps out of the window. In the epilogue of the Deathly Hallows, a chocolate frog is seen climbing through a window.
  9. At the end of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, after the credits roll out, you can see a little disclaimer saying – ‘No dragons were harmed in the making of this movie’.
  10. JKR was originally planning to kill off Ron, but she decided to let him live, as a reward for Harry.

Hope you enjoyed my fifth Ten Facts About Harry Potter!

– V

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10 Facts About Harry Potter – #4

The time has come for my 4th 10 Facts About Harry Potter! I hope you enjoy reading these just as much as I enjoy uncovering new facts! I may have possibly gone slightly over 10 facts this time…:)

Click here to read my other 10 Facts. Enjoy!!

  1. Voldemort’s wand was made of yew wood. Yew is often used as a symbol of immortality and bad omens, as this wood is often found in graveyards. This is pretty cool, seeing as Voldemort has desired immortality throughout the series, and you definitely can’t argue that he brings bad omens and death with him!
  2. Harry’s wand was made of holly. Through mythology, holly symbolised forces against evil – which of course perfectly describes Harry.
  3. The Sorting Hat thought Professor McGonagall should be in Ravenclaw, because of her wit and brains – but ultimately, of course, she was placed in Gryffindor. The same  happened with Peter Pettigrew – the hat sensed betrayal in him, Pettigrew may have been sorted into Slytherin, if the hat didn’t finally decide on Gryffindor.
  4. Neville actually asked to be in Hufflepuff – as he didn’t think he was brave or courageous. The Sorting Hat believed in Neville before anyone else did, before even Neville believed in himself.
  5. In the epilogue of the Deathly Hallows, JK nearly made Dudley have a muggleborn magical child. She discarded the idea, though.
  6. The driver and conductor of the Knight Bus, Ernie and Stan, were both based on J.K Rowling’s grandfathers.
  7. Kingsley Shacklebolt became the Minister of Magic after the Battle of Hogwarts.
  8. Herpo Fowl was the first person to create a horcrux and the first person to ever breed a Basilisk.
  9. (This one surprised me alot..) Platform 9 ¾ wasn’t the only platform that witches and wizards used. They had several other platforms in lots of different stations as well, such as Platform 7 ½, which takes witches and wizards to small villages in Europe.
  10. The last word of the series was initially intended to be “scar”, but, of course she wrote, “All was well”.

 

-V

10 Facts About Harry Potter – #3

 

This is my third 10 Facts About Harry Potter. If you want to read the others, click on the header and find the Harry Potter section. Enjoy!

  1. Harry Potter is the only wizard in history who has had all three Unforgivable Curses; crucio, the torturing curse; imperio, the curse to control people against their will; and avada kedavra, the killing curse – used against him, and survived.
  2. The third Unforgivable Curse is Avada Kedavra, the Killing Curse. ‘Avra Kehdabra‘ actually means ‘I will create as I speak‘. However, the phrase ‘cadavra‘ has also been incorporated into the spell. ‘Cadavra‘ means dead bodies, so Avada Kedavra basically means ‘I will create dead bodies as I speak‘ and it isn’t actually just a play on Abracadabra.
  3. The graphics team on the set hand wrote and hand decorated thousands of letters for owls to carry. However, they later found that these letters were much to heavy for the owls to carry, and so they had to repeat the whole procedure again. Then, it took 6 whole months for the owl to learn how to fly carrying the letters.
  4. In the Philosopher’s Stone, the directors decided not to show Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson the Great Hall beforehand. Therefore, all the shock and excitement on their expressions were real.
  5. Most of the portraits around Hogwarts were based on the film cast and crew.
  6. There were two Hagrid’s huts. One of them was overly large with larger props and furniture, which would make the actors look small. The other one was a normal size, so Hagrid would look more like a giant in comparison to Harry, Ron and Hermione.
  7. All the potions drank throughout the film were actually different flavours of soup. The overall cast favourite was carrot and coriander flavoured soup.
  8. Dementors cannot breed between themselves. The grow through decay, fungus and mould.
  9. Albus Dumbledore lived to be 150 years old.
  10. We were told that every witch and wizard would automatically join Hogwarts when they were born. This is done using an enchanted quill, which detects the birth of a newborn witch or wizard and records it in a book.

Lady Midnight book review coming soon!!
– V

Wizarding World, Florida!!

11th birthday…long gone. Hogwarts acceptance letter? Nope. But there is one place which makes us feel like we’re home at last!

2015, both of us went to Florida, and being super obsessive Potterheads, obviously went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Lynette went during the summer, Vibha went at Christmas, so the crowd there meant that we couldn’t go to ALL the places… Therefore, we thought it would be nice if we put together a list of the Top 10 places to visit. The list isn’t in any particular order – these are just ten essentials so you don’t miss out on anything if you’re in a rush. Here goes!

1. The Hogwarts Express and Platform 9 3/4

Hogwarts Express was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!! Before you go on Hogwarts Express, just a note – it is a ONE WAY TRAIN. It is going to take you to the other end of Wizarding World, so if you want to come back to your current land, you should probably finish it off first, as you may have to queue up all over again.

You enter the line at King’s Cross, where there is a queue that’s a bit long…just a bit….45 mins actually! However, the setting and everything around you makes time fly by, and the 45 minutes doesn’t  feel as long as it should. Towards the end of the line, a fantastic illusion is created of you walking through the wall and into the platform.

And welcome to Platform 9 and 3/4! Once you’ve walked through the wall you enter the famous platform. Trunks and robotic owls set the scene – and then you hear the sound of the steam train. Keep phones at the ready, it’s a great photo opportunity, as The Hogwarts Express is coming through the tunnel. Amazing.

The interiors of the train will blow your mind more. It is set up just like in the movies, with individual compartments, and realistic projectors on the window which make it feel like you are actually driving past the picturesque countryside of England. All sorts of characters walk past, and you can hear their conversations as they pass you.

DEFINITELY take a ride on the Hogwarts Express – you CANNOT miss it!

2. Ollivander’s

  

Buying a wand just adds to the magic of the Wizarding world experience. Wands are sold in every gift shop throughout Universal Studios, but if you would like to get the full experience, then you should buy a wand from Ollivander’s.


Ollivander’s is amazing, set up like the real thing, with scruffy boxes of wands falling off wonky shelves, it really makes you feel like you’re going to Hogwarts. There’s also a “wand chooses a wizard” ceremony, which is definitely worth watching. Perhaps you might be chosen by a wand yourself!


There choice of wands is vast, with wands ranging from Harry Potter’s to Fleur Delacour’s, Lord Voldemort’s to Cedric Diggory’s. Not only that, but the wands come in beautiful boxes, encased in lovely, black, velvety fabrics. They also sell interactive wands, which come with an amazing, aged map of the park surrounded by incantations and their actions. Although the interactive wands are quite pricy, it is worth the experience, as you get to “cast spells” across the park.


3. The Three Broomsticks/Butterbeer Stall

  


You cannot go to Universal Studios and NOT have Butterbeer! Butterbeer is a must have, it’s absolutely delicious! The ingredients were chosen by JKR herself, so that her fans could get a taste of Harry, Ron and Hermione’s favourite drink at the Three Broomsticks. The Butterbeer itself is sold in several stalls all across Wizarding World, and is served cold or hot, but due to the intense Florida heat, I would suggest 


An even more special Butterbeer experience would be to have it in The Three Broomsticks or Hog’s Head pub. Not only are they furnished beautiful on the inside, but the building looks gorgeous from the outside too. However, due to the huge crowd of Potterheads wanting to visit these locations, it’s almost impossible to get in without having a reservation. Our suggestion would be to take a reservation, at least a month before you actually go, for a lunch or dinner time period. Therefore, not only will you be able to go inside and enjoy the beauty of these restaurants, but you can also eat some lovely English recipes AND drink Butterbeer!


4. Madame Malkin’s


  

Madame Malkin’s is the shop where the Hogwarts students usually purchase their robes and uniform. If you have some money to spend, you can go there and buy your house robes, ties, scarves and even socks! They also sell lots of other products to showcase your house pride, so do head over there if you want to give your house a Harry Potter makeover!
However, these products can be slightly pricy, so if you want, you can go there and wear your house robes and scarf, and stand in a beautifully decorated podium, and take a picture! It’s a great place to show your friends and family just how much fun you’re having, and make your fellow Potterheads jealous 😛.


5. Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes

  


Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes is a great place to stock up on some wizarding jokes, especially if you are a prankster Potterhead! It’s also a great place to remember Fred….NOOOOO!
The store looks exactly like Fred and George’s shop in the movies, with the robotic statue of a Weasley uncovering a rabbit from under their hats, over the door. It sells everything from Pygmy Puffs, to Puking Pastilles, so do head over there! It’s such a laugh!

6. Gringotts Money Exchange

  

Do you ever find yourself needing a little bit of wizard cash? Well, go to Gringotts Money Exchange, where you can swap your normal money for wizard banknotes! In case you’re wondering what they’re for, you can use them around Universal Studios (but bear in mind you can’t use them for everything) or you can keep them as a souvenir! 

When I went in, it was surprising to see a fake goblin at the end, reading and looking up every now and then. In Gringotts Money Exchange, not only can you exchange dollars into wizarding money, but you can also buy some special Gringotts chocolates! It was a small place, but if you want to get rid of your muggle money and get some proper wizard money, then you must go to Gringott’s Money Exchange!

7. Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey

  

If you’ve ever wondered what it would feel like to properly be in the world of Harry Potter, flying along on a broomstick, then this ride is definitely for you! This is an exciting indoor ride, but rather different from a rollercoaster as it is like a virtual reality. When you come onto the ride, and start moving along, it takes you through many scenes in the books and movies, and you feel like you are actually in the world of Harry Potter, riding on a broomstick. With Quidditch games, Dementors, the Whomping Willow and Hogwarts itself, the ride seems very magical! It was an amazing experience!

The queuing place was also great! It was inside the building of Hogwarts, and paintings on the walls would talk and move every now and then. There was also the Sorting Hat, which also spoke. There were also small clips of movie scenes in Harry Potter. Despite the fact that the queue was rather long, with all the magic going around, I wasn’t bored in the slightest! 

I highly recommend going on this ride, especially if you are a huge Harry Potter fan, because it transports you into the world of Harry Potter completely!


8. Dragon Challenge

  

Feel up to a fun, thrilling rollercoaster? Then maybe the Dragon Challenge ride is for you The rollercoaster is made of two separate rollercoasters which entwine and cross a lot of the time! When you walk in and start to queue up, at one point you can choose whether you want to go onto the Chinese Fireball dragon, or the Hungarian Horntail one!

It’s very fast, has a few big drops and quite a few loops. It gives you a sensation that you are really flying on a dragon at a high speed, which feels incredible! After the exciting ride has finished, you’ll be begging to go again.

9. Frog Choir

  

The Frog Choir is an interesting show in which frogs sing! You can find a small choir on a stage holding some large ‘frogs’ on cushions, and they sing! It’s very amusing and quite funny, with toads ‘singing’ at the top of their voices! It’s a lovely small thing to watch and listen to whilst you’re walking through Hogsmeade. The show is around ten minutes long, so why don’t you go and watch some frogs singing? Where else can you watch big toads on cushions singing?
10. Honeydukes

  

We all love sweets, don’t we? And haven’t you ever wanted to try out proper sweets from Harry Potter? This shop sells the well-known Bertie Botts Every Flavoured Beans, chocolate frogs, cauldron cakes and Fizzing Whizbees, and even more! Bertie Bott’s Every Flavoured Beans is a must-buy, as it’s the only place where you can get so many different jelly beans, ranging from the lovely candy floss to the disgusting earwax (which you can give to your siblings or friends for fun!)
Not only does it have classic Harry Potter sweets, however. This lovely shop also sells many other sweets, but I’d say that the Harry Potter sweets would be best to buy, as there’s nowhere else you can buy them. 
When you have the opportunity, go to Universal Studios and take a look at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter! Being a Potterhead, that’s a must-see place for you to go to. I hope you’ll enjoy these 10 attractions which Vibha and I enjoyed a lot! 
-L and V

Pottermore Update

You may already know, but on Thursday, Pottermore released a History of Magic in America series, written by JKR herself. The series is all part of the big lead up to Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them, which is set in 1920s wizarding New York. A few months ago, we knew nothing about witches and wizards in North America, except for the fact that they called their muggles No-Majs. Now however, we now know that the American equivalent of Hogwarts is Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. We also know every other continent’s wizarding school. If you haven’t read about that click here.

JKR’s new Pottermore release tells us about American Magical History in the 14th to 17th century, and also in the 1920s. It also tells us more about American magical law. It’s worth a read and JKR will be releasing even more posts soon – so click here to read it.

If you haven’t already, make an account on the new Pottermore and find out your house and wand. The Pottermore team are currently working on making a quiz to find out what your Patronus is, which is very exciting!

-V

10 Facts About Harry Potter – #2

So here is my second post on 10 Facts About Harry Potter. If you want to read my first one, click here. Last time my facts were predominantly based on the WB Movies, so now I’m gonna try and post some facts MAINLY more about the books and characters. Hope you enjoy them, comment below to tell me your thoughts!

  1. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire had several alternative titles, which JKR had considered before deciding on the final title. She considered the title Harry Potter and the Doomspell Tournament, Harry Potter and the Triwizard Tournament, Harry Potter and the Death Eaters and Harry Potter and the Three Champions.
  2. Nicolas Flamel was a real person, who lived in Paris in the 1300s. He was very wealthy, and was part of a rich, Parisian society. After his death, people began to believe that he was secretly an alchemist, and that he had discovered a special stone that turned lead into gold. You may have noticed that Nicholas Flamel is actually mentioned in several other novels, such as The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown.
  3. People often wonder why the Avada Kedavra spell created a lightening bolt shaped scar. There are two reasons to this question, one of them being the fact that the hand movements for the Killing Curse is in the shape of a lightening bolt. Another reason is the fact that the lightening scar is like 2 number seven signs – and, if you are a true Potterhead, you will know how sacred the number 7 is.
  4. Harry’s family is very famous. Firstly, Fleamont Potter, Harry’s grandfather, invented the Sleakeazy Hair Potion. You may recognise that potion – Hermione used it before the Yule Ball. Fleamont also had ancestors who had created potions such as Skelegro, which Harry used in the Chamber of Secrets, and the Pepperup potion. Henry and Ralston Potter were both members of Wizengamot, then obviously there’s Harry, James and Lily Potter, famous for their battles against Lord Voldemort.
  5. Daniel Radcliffe broke 80 wands throughout the movies because he used them as drumsticks. 🙂
  6. Most of the people in the Black family had their names based on stars and constellations – such as Sirius, Andromeda and Regulus.
  7. During lessons, students were made to do their real homework from their real schools, to make the setting more realistic. In doing this, Rupert Grint was doodling an ugly picture of Alan Rickman during Potions class, only to find that he was standing right behind him. Alan Rickman then got Rupert Grint to sign his name at the bottom of the drawing, and kept it safe with him.
  8. JKR wrote five pages of words beginning with Q, until she finally decided on the name Quidditch.
  9. Fred and George only ever saw each other as old men when they put their names in the Goblet of Fire. Nooo, the feels!
  10. Sirius’ last ever thought was: “Here I come, Prongs.”         Until the very end 😭 RIP Padfoot and Prongs.

 

-V

10 Facts About Harry Potter – #1

I’m going to start doing a 10 facts about Harry Potter series, because there is just so much amazing trivia and extra information out there. I don’t know how much I’ll be able to do until I run out of facts, but there’s quite a lot….from interviews, Pottermore, and hidden details in the books themselves. So here are my first 10 facts about Harry Potter.

  1. J.K Rowling came up with the house names for Hogwarts on a sick bag, in an aeroplane. She was sitting in her flight, when the idea suddenly came to her. So she wouldn’t forget it, JKR quickly scribbled in the names on the blank side of an aeroplane sick bag. 
  2. During the filming of the second movie, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, all the children got head lice. Hundred of the “students” got nits and so filming had to be halted before it spread.
  3. The actor who played Hagrid, Robbie Coltrane, had such a thick, hairy, shaggy beard that he got not only a mini fan but also a fruit bat stuck in it!
  4. Slytherin’s locket was a horcrux, which needed to be destroyed in The Deathly Hallows. However, the film crew had to create FOURTY different versions of this locket, just because Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint were so bad at destroying it.
  5. Throughout all 8 Harry Potter movies, Daniel Radcliffe went through 2,000 scars and 160 different pairs of glasses!
  6. J.K Rowling first intended to name Hermione Granger, Hermione Puckle. Neville was to be called Neville Puff, along with Draco being named Draco Spinks. Luna Lovegood was called Lily Moon, which as you can see still has the idea of the moon carried through. That Patil twins were originally called Madhuri and Mati Patil.
  7. Fred and George’s birthday is on the 1st April. 😱 what.
  8. Professor Dumbledore’s boggart, the form of his greatest fear, is the dead body of his sister Arianna, whom he loved a lot.
  9. Along with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, JKR had thought about calling the final book either Harry Potter and the Peverell Quest, or Harry Potter and the Elder Wand. However she thought Harry Potter and the Peverell Quest sounded to cheesy, so she quickly abandoned that name.
  10. JKR regrets the Ronmione relationship. Dramione forever 😜.

Ok so that was my first 10 facts about Harry Potter! I hope you enjoyed it, and I’ll try and do some more of these!

-V