Harry Potter (character): Wikis

  
  

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Harry James Potter
Harry Potter character
HarryPotter5poster.jpg
Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter
in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
House Gryffindor
Actor Daniel Radcliffe
First appearance  Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Harry James Potter is the titular character and the protagonist of J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. The books cover seven years in the life of the lonely orphan who, on his eleventh birthday, learns he is a wizard. He attends Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to learn magic. Under the guidance of the kind headmaster Albus Dumbledore, Harry discovers that he is already famous throughout the wizarding world, and that his fate is tied with that of Lord Voldemort, the universally feared Dark wizard who killed Harry's father and mother.

Contents

Concept and creation

According to Rowling, the idea for both the Harry Potter books and its eponymous protagonist came while waiting for a delayed train from Manchester to London in 1990. She stated that her idea for "this scrawny, black-haired, bespectacled boy who didn't know he was a wizard became more and more real to me".[1] While she fleshed out the ideas for her book, she also decided to make Harry an orphan who attended a boarding school called Hogwarts. She explained in a 1999 interview with The Guardian: "Harry had to be an orphan  — so that he's a free agent, with no fear of letting down his parents, disappointing them ... Hogwarts has to be a boarding school  — half the important stuff happens at night! Then there's the security. Having a child of my own reinforces my belief that children above all want security, and that's what Hogwarts offers Harry."[2]

Her own mother's death on 30 December 1990 inspired Rowling to write Harry Potter as a boy longing for his dead parents, his anguish becoming "much deeper, much more real" than in earlier drafts because she related to it herself.[1] In a 2000 interview with The Guardian, Rowling also established that the character of Wart in T. H. White's novel The Sword in the Stone is "Harry's spiritual ancestor."[3] Finally, she established Harry's birth date as July 31, the same as her own. However, she maintained that Harry was not directly based on any real-life character: "he came just out of a part of me".[4]

Rowling has also maintained that Harry is a suitable real-life role model for children. "The advantage of a fictional hero or heroine is that you can know them better than you can know a living hero, many of whom you would never meet [...] if people like Harry and identify with him, I am pleased, because I think he is very likeable."[5]

Appearances

First book

Harry's illustrated image on the cover of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Harry first appears in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (published in the United States as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone) as the novel's main protagonist. When Harry was just one year old, his parents were murdered by the most powerful Dark Wizard, Lord Voldemort (Frequently called You-Know-Who);although only his soul remained after his body was destroyed.

According to Rowling, fleshing out this back story was a matter of reverse planning: "The basic idea [is that] Harry ... didn't know he was a wizard ... and so then I kind of worked backwards from that position to find out how that could be, that he wouldn't know what he was... When he was one-year-old, the most evil wizard in hundreds of years attempted to kill him. He killed Harry's parents, and then he tried to kill Harry  — he tried to curse him... Harry has to find out, before we find out. And  — so  — but for some mysterious reason, the curse didn't work on Harry. So he's left with this lightning-bolt shaped scar on his forehead, and the curse rebounded upon the evil wizard who has been in hiding ever since".[6]

As a result, Harry is written as an orphan living with his only remaining family, the Dursleys. On his eleventh birthday, Harry learns he is a wizard when Rubeus Hagrid arrives to tell him that he is to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. There he learns about the wizarding world, his parents, his connection to the Dark Lord. When he is sorted into Gryffindor House, he becomes fast friends with classmates Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, and foils Voldemort's attempt to steal the Philosopher's Stone. He also forms rivalries with characters Draco Malfoy, a classmate from an elitist wizarding family, and the cold, condescending Potions master, Severus Snape, Draco's mentor and the head of Slytherin House. Both feuds continue throughout the series. In a 1999 interview, Rowling stated that Draco is based on several prototypical schoolyard bullies she encountered [7] and Snape on a sadistic teacher of hers who abused his power.[7]

Rowling has stated that the Mirror of Erised chapter in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is her favourite; the mirror reflects Harry's deepest desire, namely to see his dead parents.[1] Her favourite funny scene is when Harry inadvertently sets a boa constrictor free from the zoo in the horrified Dursleys' presence.[7]

Second to fourth books

In the second book, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Rowling pits Harry against Tom Marvolo Riddle, Lord Voldemort's "memory" within a secret diary which has possessed Ron's younger sister Ginny Weasley. When Muggle-born students are suddenly being petrified, many suspect that Harry may be behind the attacks, further alienating him from his peers. In the climax, Ginny disappears. To rescue her, Harry battles Riddle and the monster he controls that is hidden in the Chamber of Secrets. In the third book, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Rowling uses a time travel premise. Harry learns that his parents were betrayed to Voldemort by their friend Peter Pettigrew, who framed Harry's godfather Sirius Black for the crimes, condemning him to Azkaban, the wizard prison. When Sirius escapes to seek revenge, Harry and Hermione use a Time Turner to save him and a hippogriff named Buckbeak. But Pettigrew escapes, and an innocent Sirius remains a hunted fugitive.

In the previous books, Harry is written as a child, but Rowling states that in the fourth novel, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, "Harry's horizons are literally and metaphorically widening as he grows older."[8] Harry's developing maturity becomes apparent when he becomes romantically interested in Cho Chang, a student in Ravenclaw house. Tension mounts, however, when Harry is mysteriously chosen by the Goblet of Fire to compete in the dangerous Triwizard Tournament, even though another Hogwarts champion, Cedric Diggory, has already been selected.

It is actually Voldemort's elaborate scheme to lure Harry into a deadly trap. During the Tournament's final challenge, Harry and Cedric are transported to a graveyard, using a portkey, where Cedric is killed by Peter Pettigrew, and Voldemort, aided by Pettigrew, uses Harry's blood in a gruesome ritual to resurrect his body. When Harry duels Voldemort, their wands' magical streams connect, forcing the spirit echoes of Voldemort's victims, including Cedric and James and Lily Potter, to be expelled from his wand. The spirits briefly protect Harry as he escapes to Hogwarts with Cedric's body. For Rowling, this scene is important because it shows Harry's bravery, and by retrieving Cedric's corpse, he demonstrates selflessness and compassion. Says Rowling, "He wants to save Cedric's parents additional pain.”[8] She added that preventing Cedric's body from falling into Voldemort's hands is based on the classic scene in the Iliad where Achilles retrieves the body of his best friend Patroclus from the hands of Hector.[8] Rowling also mentioned that book four rounds off an era in Harry's life, and the remaining three books are another,[8] "He's no longer protected. He's been very protected until now. But he's very young to have that experience. Most of us don't get that until a bit later in life. He's only just coming up to 15 and that's it now."[9]

Fifth and sixth books

In the fifth book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the Ministry of Magic has been waging a smear campaign against Harry and Dumbledore, disputing their claims that Voldemort has returned. A new character is introduced when the Ministry of Magic appoints Dolores Umbridge as the latest Hogwarts' Defence Against the Dark Arts instructor (and Ministry spy). Because the paranoid Ministry suspects that Dumbledore is building a wizard army to overthrow them, Umbridge refuses to teach students real defensive magic. She gradually gains more power, eventually ousting Dumbledore and seizing control of the school. As a result, Harry's increasingly angry and erratic behaviour nearly estranges him from Ron and Hermione.

Rowling says she put Harry through extreme emotional stress to show his emotional vulnerability and humanity — a contrast to his nemesis, Voldemort. "[Harry is] a very human hero, and this is, obviously, a contrast, between him, as a very human hero, and Voldemort, who has deliberately dehumanised himself. And Harry, therefore, did have to reach a point where he did almost break down, and say he didn't want to play anymore, he didn't want to be the hero anymore  – and he’d lost too much. And he didn’t want to lose anything else. So that  – Phoenix was the point at which I decided he would have his breakdown."[10]

At Hermione's urging, Harry forms a secret student organisation called Dumbledore's Army to teach more meaningful defence against the dark arts as Professor Umbridge is making them read off a textbook. Their plan is thwarted, however, when a Dumbledore's Army member betrays them and informs Umbridge about the D.A., causing Dumbledore to be ousted as Headmaster. Harry suffers another emotional blow, when his godfather, Sirius is killed during a duel with a Death Eater Bellatrix Lestrange at the Department of Mysteries, but Harry ultimately defeats Voldemort's plan to steal an important prophecy and helps uncover Umbridge's sinister motives. Rowling stated: "And now he [Harry] will rise from the ashes strengthened."[10] A side plot of Order of the Phoenix involves Harry's romance with Cho Chang, but the relationship quickly unravels. Says Rowling: "They were never going to be happy, it was better that it ended early!"[11]

In the sixth book, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince Harry enters a tumultuous puberty that, Rowling says, is based on her and her younger sister's own difficult teenage years.[12] Rowling also made an intimate statement about Harry's personal life: "Because of the demands of the adventure that Harry is following, he has had less sexual experience than boys of his age might have had".[13] This inexperience with romance was a factor in Harry's failed relationship with Cho. Now his thoughts concern Ginny, and a vital plot point in the last chapter includes Harry ending their budding romance to protect her from Voldemort.

A new character appears when former Hogwarts Potions master Horace Slughorn replaces Snape, who assumes the Defence Against the Dark Arts post. Harry suddenly excels in Potions, using an old textbook once belonging to a talented student known only as "The Half-Blood Prince." The book contains many handwritten notes, revisions, and new spells; Hermione, however, believes Harry's use of it is cheating. Through private meetings with Dumbledore, Harry learns about Voldemort's orphaned youth, his rise to power, and how he splintered his soul into Horcruxes to achieve immortality. Two Horcruxes have been destroyed; the diary and a ring, and Harry and Dumbledore locate another, although it is a fake. When Death Eaters invade Hogwarts, Snape kills Dumbledore. As Snape escapes, he proclaims that he is the Half-Blood Prince. It now falls upon Harry to find and destroy Voldemort's remaining Horcruxes and to avenge Dumbledore's death. In a 2005 interview with NBC anchorwoman Katie Couric, Rowling stated that [after the events in the sixth book] Harry has, "taken the view that they are now at war. He does become more battle hardened. He’s now ready to go out fighting. And he’s after revenge [against Voldemort and Snape]."[14]

This book also focusses on the mysterious activities of Harry's rival Draco Malfoy. Voldemort has coerced a frightened Malfoy into attempting to kill Dumbledore. During a duel in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom, Harry uses the Half-Blood Prince's spell, Sectumsempra on Malfoy, who suffers near-fatal injuries as a result. Harry is horrified by what he has done and also comes to feel sympathy for Draco, after learning he was forced to do Voldemort's bidding under the threat of his and his parents' deaths.

Final book

In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry, Ron, and Hermione leave Hogwarts to complete Dumbledore's task: to search for and destroy Voldemort's remaining four Horcruxes, then find and kill the Dark Lord. The three pit themselves against Voldemort's newly formed totalitarian police state, an action that tests Harry's courage and moral character. According to J. K. Rowling, telling scenes are when Harry uses Cruciatus and Imperius, unforgivable curses for torture and mind-control, on Voldemort's servants, and also when he casts Sectumsempra on Draco Malfoy during the bathroom fight. Each time shows a "flawed and mortal" side to Harry. However, she explains that, "He is also in an extreme situation and attempting to defend somebody very good against a violent and murderous opponent".[15]

Harry experiences occasional disturbing visions of Draco being forced to perform the Death Eaters' bidding and feels "...sickened...by the use to which Draco was now being put by Voldemort", again showing his compassion for an enemy.

Harry comes to recognise that his own single-mindedness makes him predictable to his enemies and often clouds his perceptions. When Voldemort kills Snape later in the story, Harry realises that Snape was not the traitorous murderer he believed him to be, but a tragic anti-hero who was loyal to Dumbledore. In Chapter 33 ("The Prince's Tale") Snape's memories reveal that he loved Harry's mother, Lily Evans, but their friendship ended over his association with future Death Eaters and his "blood purity" beliefs. When Voldemort murdered the Potters, a grieving Snape vowed to protect Lily's child, although he loathed young Harry for being James Potter's son. It is also revealed that Snape did not murder Dumbledore, but carried out Dumbledore's prearranged plan. Dumbledore, dying from a slow-spreading curse, wanted to protect Snape's position within the Death Eaters and spare Draco from completing Voldemort's task to murder him.

To defeat Harry, Voldemort steals the Elder Wand from Dumbledore's tomb. It is the most powerful wand ever created, and he twice casts the Killing Curse on Harry with it. The first attempt merely stuns Harry into a death-like state. In the chapter "King's Cross", Dumbledore's spirit tells Harry that when Voldemort failed to kill baby Harry and disembodied himself, Harry became an unintentional Horcrux; Harry could not kill Voldemort while the Dark Lord's soul shard was within Harry's body. Voldemort's soul shard within Harry was destroyed because Harry willingly faced death. But Voldemort's Killing Curse fails because Voldemort used Harry's blood in his resurrection. In the book's climax, Voldemort's second Killing Curse hurled at Harry also fails and rebounds upon himself, as the result of Harry's Expelliarmus spell, finally killing him, because Harry, not Voldemort, had become the Elder Wand's true master. Harry also becomes the worthy possessor of the remaining Deathly Hallows: the Invisibility Cloak and the Resurrection Stone, hence becoming the true Master of Death. J. K. Rowling said the difference between Harry and Voldemort is that Harry willingly accepts mortality, making him stronger than his nemesis. "The real master of Death accepts that he must die, and that there are much worse things in the world of the living".[15] At the very end Harry decides to leave the Elder Wand and the Resurrection Stone hidden but keeps the Invisibility Cloak because it belonged to his father.[15]

Epilogue

According to Rowling, after Voldemort's defeat, Harry joins the "reshuffled Auror Department under Kingsley Shacklebolt, eventually rising to become Head of said department in 2007."[16] Rowling said his old rival Draco has overcome his animosity after Harry saved his life three times in the seventh book,[15] though there is no sign that they have actually become friends. In the end, Harry and Ginny are married and have three children: James Sirius, Albus Severus, and Lily Luna.

Film appearances

In the six Harry Potter films screened from 2001–2009, Harry Potter has been portrayed by British actor Daniel Radcliffe, who is slated to appear in the two final films, the last book being made into two parts. Radcliffe was asked to audition for the role of Harry in 2000 by producer David Heyman, while in attendance at a play titled Stones in His Pockets in London.[17][18] The role has been highly lucrative for Radcliffe; as of 2007, he had an estimated wealth of £17 million.[19]

In a 2007 interview with MTV, Radcliffe stated that, for him, Harry is a classic coming of age character: "That's what the films are about for me: a loss of innocence, going from being a young kid in awe of the world around him, to someone who is more battle-hardened by the end of it."[20] He also said that for him, important factors in Harry's psyche are his survivor's guilt in regard to his dead parents and his lingering loneliness. Because of this, Radcliffe talked to a bereavement counsellor to help him prepare for the role.[20] Radcliffe was quoted as saying that he wished for Harry to die in the books, but he clarified that he, "can't imagine any other way they can be concluded."[20] After reading the last book, where Harry and his friends survive and have children, Radcliffe stated he was glad about the ending and lauded Rowling for the conclusion of the story.[21] Radcliffe stated that the most repeated question he has been asked is how Harry Potter has influenced his own life, to which he regularly answers it has been "fine",[22] and that he did not feel pigeonholed by the role, but rather sees it as a huge privilege to portray Harry.[22]

Characterisation

In the books, Harry is categorised as a "half-blood" wizard in the series, because although both his parents were magical, his mother, Lily Evans, was "Muggle-born". According to Rowling, to characters for whom wizarding blood purity matters, Lily would be considered "as 'bad' as a Muggle,"[23] and derogatively referred to as a "Mudblood".

According to Rowling, Harry is strongly guided by his own conscience, and has a keen feeling of what is right and what is wrong. Having "very limited access to truly caring adults", Rowling said, Harry "is forced to make his own decisions from an early age on."[24] He "does make mistakes", she conceded, but in the end, he does what his conscience tells him to do. According to Rowling, one of Harry's pivotal scenes came in the fourth book when he protects his dead schoolmate Cedric Diggory's body from Voldemort, because it shows he is brave and unselfish.[8]

Rowling also said that Harry's two worst character flaws are "anger and occasional arrogance",[15] but that Harry is also innately honourable. "He's not a cruel boy. He's competitive, and he's a fighter. He doesn't just lie down and take abuse. But he does have native integrity, which makes him a hero to me. He's a normal boy but with those qualities most of us really admire."[25] For the most part, Harry shows humility, often downplaying his achievements; though he uses a litany of his adventures as examples of his maturity early in the fifth book, these very same adventures are later employed to explain why he should lead Dumbledore's Army, at which point he denies that they make him worthy of authority. After the seventh book, Rowling commented that Harry has the ultimate character strength, being able to do what even Voldemort could not: the acceptance of the inevitability of death.

Physical appearance

Throughout the series, Harry is described as having his father's perpetually untidy black hair, his mother's bright green eyes, and carries a lightning bolt-shaped scar on his forehead. He is further described as "small and skinny for his age" with "a thin face" and "knobbly knees", and he wears round eyeglasses. In the first book, the scar is described as "the only thing Harry liked about his own appearance". Asked what is the meaning behind Harry's lightning bolt scar, Rowling said, "I wanted him to be physically marked by what he has been through. It was an outward expression of what he has been through inside... It is almost like being the chosen one or the cursed one, in a sense".[26] In the later part of the series Harry grows taller and by the seventh book is said to be 'almost' the height of his father, and 'tall' by other characters.[27]

Rowling explained that Harry's image came to her when she first thought up Harry Potter, seeing him as a "scrawny, black-haired, bespectacled boy".[1] She also mentioned that she thinks Harry's glasses are the clue to his vulnerability.[28]

Abilities and interests

Throughout the series, Rowling wrote Harry Potter as a gifted wizard apprentice. She stated in a 2000 interview with South West News Service that Harry Potter is "particularly talented" in Defence Against the Dark Arts, and also good at Quidditch.[29] Rowling said in the same interview that until about halfway through the third book, his good friend Hermione Granger  — written as the smartest student in Harry's year — would have beaten Harry in a magical duel. From the fourth book onwards, Rowling admits Harry has become quite talented in the Defence Against the Dark Arts and would beat his friend Hermione in a magical duel.[29]

His power is evident from the beginning of the series; specifically, Harry shows immediate command of a broomstick, produces a Patronus at an early age, and survives several confrontations with Voldemort. Harry is able to speak and understand Parseltongue, a language associated with Dark Magic, which, according to Rowling, is because he harbours a piece of Lord Voldemort's soul. After Voldemort destroys that soul fragment in the seventh book's climax, Harry loses the ability to speak Parseltongue. Harry "is very glad" to have lost this gift.[15] Harry is also the only student in his class capable of resisting the Imperius curse.

According to Rowling, Harry's favourite book is Quidditch Through the Ages, an actual book that Rowling wrote (under the pseudonym Kennilworthy Whisp) for the Comic Relief charity.

Possessions

Harry's parents left behind a somewhat large pile of wizard's gold, used as currency in the world of magic, in a vault in the wizarding bank, Gringotts. After Sirius' death later in the series, all of his remaining possessions are also passed along to Harry, including Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place. Rowling noted that "Harry’s money never really is that important in the books, except that he can afford his books and uniforms and so on.”[30] It is also used as a contrast with Ron and his family, who must be careful with their limited gold.

Harry also inherits indirectly two of his father's prize possessions. One is the Marauder's Map, given to him by interim owners Fred and George Weasley, which endows Harry with comprehensive knowledge of Hogwarts' facilities, grounds and occupants. The other is his father's Invisibility Cloak, given to him by Dumbledore, which eventually proves Harry's descent from the Peverell family. Harry uses these tools both to aid in semi-legal excursions at school and to protect those he cares about; the Invisibility Cloak, in particular, can hide two full-grown people. When Harry reaches his age of maturity at seventeen, Mrs. Weasley gives him a pocket watch which had once belonged to her brother Fabian Prewett.

Throughout the majority of the books, Harry also has a pet owl named Hedwig, used to deliver and receive messages and packages. Hedwig is killed in the seventh book, about which Rowling says: "The loss of Hedwig represented a loss of innocence and security. She has been almost like a cuddly toy to Harry at times. I know that death upset a lot of people!"[15] As a Quidditch player, Harry has owned two high-quality brooms. The first, a Nimbus Two Thousand, was procured for him by Professor McGonagall when Harry was added to Gryffindor's Quidditch team despite being a first-year student. This broom was destroyed by the Whomping Willow during a match in Harry's third year. It was replaced by a Firebolt, an even faster (and more expensive) broom, purchased for Harry by Sirius; however, as Black was believed to be trying to murder Harry at the time, the broom was subjected to stringent security inspections before Harry was allowed to ride it. Harry used it throughout his Hogwarts career until it, along with Hedwig, was lost during the July 1997 escape from Privet Drive.

Family

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Peverell Family
 
 
 
Salazar Slytherin
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Antioch Peverell
 
Cadmus Peverell
 
Ignotus Peverell
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Many Generations
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Many Generations
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Marvolo Gaunt
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Black family
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Morfin Gaunt
 
Merope Gaunt
 
Tom Riddle Sr
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tom Marvolo Riddle
 
Septimus Weasley
 
Cedrella Black
 
Mr and Mrs Dursley
 
 
 
 
 
Mr and Mrs Evans
 
 
 
Mr and Mrs Potter
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Apolline Delacour
 
Monsieur Delacour
 
Molly Prewett
 
Arthur Weasley
 
Marjorie Dursley
 
Vernon Dursley
 
Petunia Evans
 
Lily Evans
 
James Potter
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gabrielle Delacour
 
 
Charles Weasley
 
 
Fred Weasley
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dudley Dursley
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Fleur Delacour
 
William Weasley
 
Percy Weasley
 
 
George Weasley
 
Angelina Johnson
 
Hermione Granger
 
Ronald Weasley
 
Ginevra Weasley
 
Harry Potter
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Victoire Weasley
 
Dominique Weasley
 
Louis Weasley
 
 
Fred Weasley
 
Roxanne Weasley
 
Rose Weasley
 
Hugo Weasley
 
James Potter
 
Albus Potter
 
Lily Potter
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Molly Weasley
 
Lucy Weasley

In the novels, Harry is the only child of James and Lily Potter, but orphaned as an infant. Rowling made Harry an orphan from the early drafts of her first book. She felt an orphan would be the most interesting character to write about.[2] However, after her mother's death, Rowling wrote Harry as a child longing to see his dead parents again, incorporating her own anguish into him.

Harry's aunt and uncle kept the truth about his parents' deaths from Harry, telling him they died in a car crash.[1] James Potter is a descendant of Ignotus Peverell, the third of the three original owners of the Deathly Hallows, and thus so is Harry, a realisation he makes during the course of the final book. Although he does not realize it, this also means that he is a distant relative of Voldemort himself, whose grandfather, Marvolo Gaunt, was also apparently a descendant of the Peverells, as revealed in the sixth book when Gaunt is seen wearing the Resurrection Stone. Through his marriage to Ginny Weasley, Harry links to the House of Black.

In popular culture

Harry and the Potters perform at the Horace Mann School in Riverdale, Bronx, New York. Note the artists' black hair and spectacles.

In 2002, Harry Potter was voted No. 85 among the "100 Best Fictional Characters" by Book magazine[31] and also voted the 35th "Worst Briton" in Channel 4's "100 Worst Britons We Love to Hate" programme.[32] Entertainment Weekly put him on its end-of-the-decade, "best-of" list, saying "Long after we've turned the last page and watched the last end credit, Harry still feels like someone we know. And that's the most magical thing about him."[33]

According to halloweenonline.com, Harry Potter sets were the fifth-best selling Halloween costume of 2005.[34] In addition, wizard rock bands like Harry and the Potters and others regularly dress up in the style of Harry Potter, sporting painted forehead scars, black wigs and round bottle top glasses. Wizard rock is a musical movement dating from 2002 that consists of at least 200 bands made up of young musicians, playing songs about Harry Potter.[35][36] The movement started in Massachusetts with the band Harry and the Potters, who cosplay as Harry during live performances[37][38]

Parodies

Harry Potter is spoofed in the Barry Trotter series by American writer Michael Gerber, where a "Barry Trotter" appears as the eponymous anti-hero. On his homepage, Gerber describes Trotter as an unpleasant character who "drinks too much, eats like a pig, sleeps until noon, and owes everybody money."[39] The author stated "[s]ince I really liked Rowling's books […] I felt obligated to try to write a spoof worthy of the originals."[40]

Harry was parodied in the Robot Chicken episode "Nutcracker Sweet" voiced by Seth Green. He is shown to have a Firebolt in a delicate place on himself. Quinton Flynn voices Harry Potter in the episode "Password: Swordfish." When the threat of the puberty creature Pubertis is known, Harry sees Dumbledore about this and receives a stone that might help him fight Pubertis. Upon confrontation with Pubertis, he rubs the stone two times, which summons ghosts to punch it. When it comes to the third time (the stone starts "chafing"), Dumbledore appears and tells Harry that the stone can only be warmed up three times (four if you take a week off) and that Pubertis cannot be destroyed since it lives in everyone. Zac Efron voices Harry Potter in the episode "I Love Her." Criss Angel appears as the substitute teacher for his potions class after Severus Snape suffers a "minor potion accident."

In an episode of The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, Potter is referenced twice, once when Jimmy is watching a reel of movies rapidly (Where Hagrid says "You're a Wizard, Harry") and later in the filming for Jimmy's movie, as Jimmy plays a parody of Harry, called "Perry Bladder". Wizards of Waverly Place once referenced Harry, as Justin was wearing a robe and glasses like Harry, which Alex comments on, trying to guess who he looks like ("Barry something", "Jerry something", etc.) Sonny With A Chance also referenced Harry, when Sonny dresses as a wizard, mocking Selena Gomez, and Chad greets her as "Scary Potter." Episodes of The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy has spoofed Harry as Nigel Planter. Unlike Harry, Nigel has an L-shaped scar on his forehead. In an unexpected twist, the episode "Nigel Planter and the Order of the Peanuts" reveals that Nigel is not the child of wizards, but the heir to a major peanut company. Nigel, spoofing Harry's ability to speak Parseltongue, speaks "Partial Tongue", and rather than talk to Snakes, talks to Snacks.

In Epic Movie, a 2007 parody film, where he is played by Canadian comedian Kevin McDonald, Harry is portrayed as being somewhat of a pervert as seen when Harry tries to touch Susan Pevensie's breasts. In the 2008 American comedy film Yes Man, Carl (portrayed by Jim Carrey) attends a Harry Potter-themed party disguised as Harry himself. A series of sketches on All That spoofed Harry Potter with Harry Bladder. Instead of flying on a broom, Harry rode a leaf-blower.[41]

A sketch on MADtv saw professional wrestler Triple H perform a spoof of Harry called 'Triple H Potter' in which the character is invited to be on MADtv. In a scene only vaguely similar to the scene in which Hagrid retrieves Harry from the shack on the island in the first book, he has to deal with both an impersonator of Stone Cold Steve Austin, and Stephanie Weir, who runs herself into a wall. Weir is then slammed into the doorframe of the barn where "Potter" has been staying after asking Triple H to make her 'fly' out of the barn. Harry was mentioned in passing as a 'boy wizard' whose adventures were outstripping the works of a fictional author in Bunnicula meets Edgar Allen Crow.

The Potter Puppet Pals, made by twenty-three year old Neil Cicierega, is a series of flash animations about Harry Potter. Episodes so far have been about annoying Snape with disastrous results (titled "Bothering Snape") and killing Lord Voldemort with machine guns (titled "Trouble at Hogwarts"). Other movies featuring real puppets have been released on YouTube.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e "J. K. Rowling Official Site  – Section Biography". http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/en/biography.cfm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  2. ^ a b ""Carey, Joanna. "Who hasn't met Harry?" Guardian Unlimited, February 16, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/0299-guardian-carey.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  3. ^ "JK (JOANNE KATHLEEN) ROWLING (1966-), Guardian Unlimited". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0800-guardian-bio.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  4. ^ ""Raincoast Books interview transcript, Raincoast Books (Canada), March 2001."". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2001/0301-raincoast-interview.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  5. ^ ""Barnes and Noble interview, March 19, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/0399-barnesandnoble.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  6. ^ ""J.K. Rowling on The Diane Rehm Show, WAMU Radio Washington, D.C., October 20, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/1299-wamu-rehm.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  7. ^ a b c ""Lydon, Christopher. J.K. Rowling interview transcript, The Connection (WBUR Radio), 12 October 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/1099-connectiontransc2.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  8. ^ a b c d e ""Jensen, Jeff. "'Fire' Storm," Entertainment Weekly, September 7, 2000"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0900-ew-jensen.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  9. ^ ""J.K. Rowling Interview," CBCNewsWorld: Hot Type, July 13, 2000". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0700-hottype-solomon.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-09. 
  10. ^ a b ""Living With Harry Potter"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/1205-bbc-fry.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  11. ^ ""JK Rowling's World Book Day Chat, March 4, 2004"". http://www.quick-quote-quill.org/articles/2004/0304-wbd.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  12. ^ ""Richard & Judy Show"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2006/0626-ch4-richardandjudy.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  13. ^ ""Grossman, Lev. "J.K. Rowling Hogwarts And All," Time Magazine, 17 July 2005"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/0705-time-grossman.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  14. ^ ""Couric, Katie.: 'J.K. Rowling, the author with the magic touch: 'It’s going to be really emotional to say goodbye,' says Rowling as she writes the last book in the Harry Potter saga,' Dateline NBC, July 17, 2005"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/0705-nbcdateline-couric.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  15. ^ a b c d e f g ""'J.K. Rowling Web Chat Transcript"". http://web.archive.org/web/20071230220357/http://bloomsbury.com/jkrevent/content.asp?sec=3&sec2=1. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  16. ^ "Wizard of the Month for October". J.K. Rowling. 2007-10-20. http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/en/wotm.cfm. Retrieved 2007-10-20. 
  17. ^ McLean, Craig (2007-07-15). "Hobnobs & broomsticks". Sunday Herald. http://www.sundayherald.com/life/people/display.var.1546220.0.0.php. Retrieved 2007-07-15. 
  18. ^ Koltnow, Barry (2007-07-08). "One enchanted night at theater, Radcliffe became Harry Potter". East Valley Tribune. http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/story/92834?source=rss&dest=STY-92834. Retrieved 2007-07-15. 
  19. ^ "Young People's Rich List: Daniel Radcliffe". London: Times Online. http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/specials/rich_list/rich_list_search/?urllink=http://www.timesonline.co.uk/richlist/person/0,,48353,00.html. Retrieved 2007-06-05. 
  20. ^ a b c Vineyard, Jennifer. "Daniel Radcliffe Talks Harry Potter's First Kiss". http://www.mtv.com/movies/news/articles/1563897/story.jhtml. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  21. ^ ew.com. "Daniel Radcliffe: My Take on Deathly Hallows". http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20044270_20044274_20048635,00.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  22. ^ a b Lawson, Terry. "Daniel Radcliffe Talks Harry Potter". http://www.popmatters.com/pm/news/article/43745/daniel-radcliffe-talks-harry-potter/. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  23. ^ Why are some people in the wizarding world (e.g., Harry) called 'half-blood' even though both their parents were magical?
  24. ^ J.K. Rowling interview transcript, The Connection (WBUR Radio), 12 October, 1999
  25. ^ ""O'Malley, Judy. "Talking With . . . J.K. Rowling," Book Links, July 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/0799-booklinks-omalley.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  26. ^ Interview of J.K. Rowling, Detroit News, March 19, 2001
  27. ^ Zimmerman, W. Frederick (2005). Unauthorized Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows News: Harry Potter Book Seven and Half-Blood Prince Analysis. Nimble Books. p. 37. ISBN 0976540606. 
  28. ^ "'Boquet, Tim. "J.K. Rowling: The Wizard Behind Harry Potter," Reader's Digest, December 2000". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/1200-readersdigest-boquet.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-09. 
  29. ^ a b """World Exclusive Interview with J K Rowling," South West News Service, 8 July 2000"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0700-swns-alfie.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  30. ^ "Harry Potter author dreading closing final chapter [interview by Owen Jones]," Ireland On-line, 17 July 2005
  31. ^ Book Magazine Harry Potter among best characters in fiction since 1900, npr.com.
  32. ^ Channel 4 - 100 Worst Britons channel4.com.
  33. ^ Geier, Thom; Jensen, Jeff; Jordan, Tina; Lyons, Margaret; Markovitz, Adam; Nashawaty, Chris; Pastorek, Whitney; Rice, Lynette; Rottenberg, Josh; Schwartz, Missy; Slezak, Michael; Snierson, Dan; Stack, Tim; Stroup, Kate; Tucker, Ken; Vary, Adam B.; Vozick-Levinson, Simon; Ward, Kate (December 11, 2009), "THE 100 Greatest MOVIES, TV SHOWS, ALBUMS, BOOKS, CHARACTERS, SCENES, EPISODES, SONGS, DRESSES, MUSIC VIDEOS, AND TRENDS THAT ENTERTAINED US OVER THE PAST 10 YEARS". Entertainment Weekly. (1079/1080):74-84
  34. ^ "Halloween Online Resource Center". http://www.halloweenonlinefind.com/. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  35. ^ Brady, Shaun (2006-11-28). "Yule Ball rolls into Philly". The Philadelphia Daily News. http://www.philly.com/mld/dailynews/16112250.htm. Retrieved 2007-02-27. 
  36. ^ Humphries, Rachel (2007-07-13). "Harry Potter 'Wrockers' Conjure Musical Magic". ABC News. http://abcnews.go.com/Business/FunMoney/Story?id=3371717&page=1. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  37. ^ Davies, Shaun (2007-07-20). "The unexpected wizards of rock and roll". MSN. http://news.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=279730. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  38. ^ Sweeney, Emily (2004-09-16). "Sibling musicians bring out the 'punk' in Harry Potter". The Boston Globe. http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2004/09/16/sibling_musicians_bring_out_the_punk_in_harry_potter/. Retrieved 2007-01-26. 
  39. ^ ""Barry Trotter -- Glossary"". http://www.barrytrotter.com/chargloss.htm#t. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  40. ^ ""Barry Trotter -- Frequently Asked Questions"". http://www.barrytrotter.com/faq.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  41. ^ Kyle Sullivan. "My Summer on "All That"". Officially Kyle Sullivan. http://www.kyle-sullivan.com/articles/msoat.htm. Retrieved 2007-05-20. 

External links


Simple English

Harry Potter character
Harry James Potter
House Gryffindor
Species Human
Actor Daniel Radcliffe
First appearance Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Harry James Potter is the main character and the main protagonist of J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter fantasy series. The books cover seven years in the life of the orphan who, on his 11th birthday, learns he is a wizard and the son of magical parents Lily and James Potter. He goes to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to learn magic. Harry soon learns that he is already famous in the world of wizards. He also learns that his fate is connected to Lord Voldemort. Voldemort was the evil wizard who killed Harry's parents but was believed to have died when he tried to use the Killing Curse on the baby Harry. Rowling said that the idea for the Harry Potter character came to her while waiting for a train in 1990. She decided to make him an orphan following the death of her mother.

Contents

Concept and creation

According to author J. K. Rowling, the idea for both the Harry Potter books and the character came while waiting for a delayed train from Manchester to London in 1990. J.K. Rowling said that in the hours she waited, her idea for "this scrawny, black-haired, bespectacled boy who didn't know he was a wizard became more and more real to me."[1] Rowling also decided to make Harry an orphan at a boarding school called Hogwarts. She explained, "Harry HAD to be an orphan - so that he's a free agent, with no fear of letting down his parents, disappointing them … Hogwarts HAS to be a boarding school - half the important stuff happens at night! Then there's the security. Having a child of my own reinforces my belief that children above all want security, and that's what Hogwarts offers Harry."[2]

The death of her mother on December 30, 1990 led Rowling to write Harry Potter as a boy longing for his dead parents. His pain became "more deeper, more real" than in earlier versions because she related to it herself.[1] In a 2000 interview with The Guardian, Rowling also said that the character of Wart in T.H. White's novel The Sword In the Stone is "Harry's spiritual ancestor." In that book, a boy called Wart meets the mysterious sorcerer Merlyn. Merlyn helps the child grow into a noble, powerful warrior who later becomes King Arthur.[3] She also said that Harry was born on 31 July and has the same birthday as herself. However, she says, Harry is not directly based on any real-life character, "he came just out of a part of me".[4]

Appearances

First book

Harry first appears in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (published in the United States as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone) as the book's protagonist, or main character. When Harry was a little over one year old, his parents were killed by the powerful Dark Wizard, Lord Voldemort. Harry survived Voldemort's Killing Curse after his mother died to protect him. The Curse was turned back at Voldemort and ripped his soul from his body. Because of this, Harry has a lightning-bolt shaped scar on his forehead. Rowling has said that creating the story about Harry Potter's past was a matter of reverse planning: "The basic idea [is that] Harry … didn't know he was a wizard … and so then I kind of worked backwards from that position to find out how that could be, that he wouldn't know what he was… When he was one-year-old, the most evil wizard in hundreds of years attempted to kill him. He killed Harry's parents, and then he tried to kill Harry - he tried to curse him… Harry has to find out, before we find out. And - so - but for some mysterious reason, the curse didn't work on Harry. So he's left with this lightning-bolt shaped scar on his forehead, and the curse rebounded upon the evil wizard who has been in hiding ever since".[5]

Harry is written as an orphan living unhappily with his only family left, the cruel Dursleys. On his eleventh birthday, Harry finds that he is a wizard when Rubeus Hagrid tells him that he is to go Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. There he learns about his parents and his connection to the Dark Lord. He is sorted into Gryffindor House by the Sorting Hat and becomes friends with classmates Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger. Near the end of his first year at Hogwarts, he stops Voldemort's attempt to steal the Philosopher's Stone. He also forms rivalries with characters Draco Malfoy, a classmate from an elitist wizard family, and the Potions teacher and head of Slytherin House, Severus Snape. Both feuds continue throughout the series. In a 1999 interview, Rowling stated that Draco is based on several schoolyard bullies she had known [6] and Snape on a teacher of hers who abused his power.[6]

Rowling has said that the Mirror of Erised chapter in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is her favourite. The mirror reflects Harry's deepest desire, namely to see his dead parents.[1] Her favourite funny scene is when Harry accidentally sets a boa constrictor free from the zoo in the horrified Dursleys' presence.[6]

Second to fourth books

In the second book, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Rowling pits Harry against Tom Marvolo Riddle, a memory of Lord Voldemort locked up in a secret diary that Ron's younger sister Ginny Weasley finds in a bathroom. When mudblood students are found being petrified, many think that Harry may be the one behind the attacks, making him become more detached from his classmates. At the height of the book, Ginny Weasley is found to be missing. To rescue her, Harry battles Riddle and the monster he controls that is hidden in the Chamber of Secrets.

In the third book, called Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Rowling uses time travel as the basis for the book. Harry learns that his parents were sold out to Lord Voldemort by their friend Peter Pettigrew, also accused of framing Harry's godfather Sirius Black for crimes he didn't make, locking him up in the wizarding prison, Azkaban. When Black escapes to find revenge, Harry and Hermione use a Time Turner to save him and a hippogriff named Buckbeak. Pettigrew, and the truth, escape from Sirius, causing him to be on the run from the authorities.

In the previous books, Harry is written as a child, but Rowling states that in the fourth novel, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, "Harry's horizons are literally and metaphorically widening as he grows older."[7] Harry's developing maturity becomes apparent when he becomes interested in Cho Chang, a pretty Ravenclaw student. Tension mounts, however, when Harry is mysteriously chosen by the Goblet of Fire to compete in the dangerous Triwizard Tournament, even though another Hogwarts champion, Cedric Diggory, was already selected. It is actually an elaborate scheme by Lord Voldemort to lure Harry into a deadly trap. During the Tournament's final challenge, Harry and Cedric are teleported to a graveyard. Cedric is killed, and Lord Voldemort, aided by Peter Pettigrew, uses Harry's blood in a gruesome ritual to resurrect Voldemort's body. When Harry duels Voldemort, their wands' magical streams connect, forcing the spirit echoes of Voldemort's victims, including Cedric and James and Lily Potter, to be expelled from his wand. The spirits shortly protect Harry as he escapes to Hogwarts with Cedric's body. For Rowling, this scene is important because it shows how Harry is brave, and by finding Cedric's corpse, he demonstrates selflessness and compassion. Says Rowling, "He wants to save Cedric's parents additional pain.”[7] She added that preventing Cedric Diggory's body from falling into Voldemort's hands is based on the classic scene in the Iliad where Achilles finds the body of his best friend Patroclus from the hands of Hector. The author said: "That [Iliad scene] really, really, REALLY moved me when I read that when I was 19. The idea of the desecration of a body, a very ancient idea... I was thinking of that when Harry saved Cedric's body."[7] She also said that she cried while writing the scene when Harry's dead parents are drawn from Voldemort's wand, the first time she cried while penning her story.[7]

Fifth and sixth book

In the fifth book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the Ministry of Magic has been waging a smear campaign against Harry and Dumbledore, disputing their claims that Voldemort has returned. A new character is introduced when the Ministry of Magic appoints Dolores Umbridge as the latest Hogwarts' Defence Against the Dark Arts instructor (and Ministry spy). Because the paranoid Ministry thinks that Dumbledore is building a wizard army to overthrow them, Umbridge decides not to teach students real defensive magic. She gradually gains more power, eventually seizing control of the school. As a result, Harry's growing angry and erratic behaviour nearly estranges him from Ron and Hermione. Rowling says she put Harry through extreme emotional stress to show his emotional vulnerability and humanity—a contrast to his nemesis, Voldemort. "[Harry is] a very human hero, and this is, obviously, a contrast, between him, as a very human hero, and Voldemort, who has deliberately dehumanised himself. And Harry, therefore, did have to reach a point where he did almost break down, and say he didn’t want to play anymore, he didn’t want to be the hero anymore – and he’d lost too much. And he didn’t want to lose anything else. So that – Phoenix was the point at which I decided he would have his breakdown."[8] At Hermione's urging, Harry secretly teaches his classmates real defensive magic to thwart Umbridge and the Ministry, but their meetings are found and Dumbledore is ousted as Headmaster. Harry suffers another emotional blow, when his godfather, Sirius Black is killed during a battle with Death Eaters at the Department of Mysteries, but Harry ultimately defeats Voldemort's plan to steal an important prophecy and helps uncover Umbridge's sinister motives. Rowling stated: "And now he [Harry] will rise from the ashes strengthened."[8] A sideplot of Order of the Phoenix involves Harry's romance with Cho Chang, but the relationship quickly unravels. Says Rowling: "They were never going to be happy, it was better that it ended early!"[9]

In the sixth book, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince Harry enters a tumultuous puberty that, Rowling says, is based on her and her younger sister's own difficult teenage years.[10] Rowling also made an intimate statement about Harry's personal life: "Because of the demands of the adventure that Harry is following, he has had less sexual experience than boys of his age might have had".[11] This inexperience with romance was a factor in Harry's failed relationship with Cho Chang. Now his thoughts concern Ginny Weasley, Ron's sister, a vital plot point in the last chapter when Harry ends their budding romance to protect her from Voldemort.

A new character appears when former Hogwarts Potions master Horace Slughorn returns to replace Severus Snape, who takes over the Defence Against the Dark Arts post. Harry excels in Potions by using an old textbook once belonging to a talented student known only as, "The Half-Blood Prince." The book contains many handwritten notes, revisions, and new spells; Hermione, however, believes Harry using it is cheating. Through private meetings with Dumbledore, Harry learns about Lord Voldemort's orphaned youth, his rise to power, and how he splintered his soul into Horcruxes to achieve immortality. Two Horcruxes have been destroyed, and Harry and Dumbledore locate another, although it is a fake. When Death Eaters invade Hogwarts, Snape kills Dumbledore. As Snape escapes, he proclaims that he is the Half-Blood Prince—Harry's admired mentor is actually his hated enemy. It now falls upon Harry to find and destroy Voldemort's remaining Horcruxes and to avenge Dumbledore's death. In a 2005 interview with NBC anchorwoman Katie Couric, Rowling stated that [after the events in the sixth book] Harry has, "taken the view that they are now at war. He does become more battle hardened. He’s now ready to go out fighting. And he’s after revenge [against Voldemort and Snape]."[12]

Final book

In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry, Ron and Hermione leave Hogwarts to complete Dumbledore's task: to search for and destroy Voldemort's remaining four Horcruxes, and then find and kill the Dark Lord. The three put themselves against Voldemort's newly formed totalitarian police state, an action that tests Harry's courage and moral character. According to J.K. Rowling, a telling scene in which Harry uses Cruciatus and Imperius (unforgivable curses for torture and mind-control) on Voldemort's servants shows a side to Harry that is "flawed and mortal." However, she explains that, "He is also in an extreme situation and attempting to defend somebody very good against a violent and murderous opponent".[13]

Harry comes to recognise that his own single-mindedness makes him predictable to his enemies and often clouds his perceptions. When Severus Snape is killed by Voldemort later in the story, Harry realises that Snape was not the traitorous murderer he believed him to be, but a tragic anti-hero who was loyal to Albus Dumbledore. In Chapter 33 ("The Prince's Tale") Snape's memories show that he loved Harry's mother Lily Evans, but their friendship ended over his association with future Death Eaters and "blood purity" beliefs. When Voldemort killed the Potters, a grieving Snape vowed to protect Lily's child, although he loathed young Harry for being James Potter's son. It is also revealed that Snape did not kill Albus Dumbledore, but carried out Dumbledore's prearranged plan. Dumbledore, who was dying from a slow-spreading curse, wanted to protect Snape's position within the Death Eaters and spare Draco Malfoy from completing Voldemort's task to murder him.

To defeat Harry, Voldemort steals the Elder Wand from Dumbledore's tomb. It is the most powerful wand ever created, and he twice casts the Killing Curse on Harry with it. The first attempt merely stuns Harry into a death-like state. In the chapter "King's Cross", Dumbledore's spirit tells Harry that when Voldemort failed to kill baby Harry and disembodied himself, Harry became an unintentional Horcrux; Voldemort could not kill Harry while the Dark Lord's soul shard was within Harry's body. Voldemort's second Killing Curse also fails because Voldemort used Harry's blood in his resurrection. Voldemort's soul shard within Harry was destroyed because Harry willingly faced death. In the next chapter, "The Flaw in the Plan", it is established that Harry, not Voldemort, became the Elder Wand's true master. In the book's climax, the Elder Wand disobeys the Dark Lord's command and rebounds the curse onto Voldemort, killing him.[13] J.K. Rowling said, the difference between Harry and Voldemort is that Harry willingly accepts mortality, making him stronger than his nemesis. "The real master of Death accepts that he must die, and that there are much worse things in the world of the living."[13]

After Voldemort's defeat, Harry joins the Auror Office for a revolutionised Ministry of Magic. Ten years afterwards, Harry is appointed department head by new Minister of Magic Kingsley Shacklebolt.[14] Ron, who helped George run the Weasley Wizarding Wheezes Joke Shop for a time, is also an Auror.[15] In the end, Rowling said his old rival Draco Malfoy has overcome his animosity after Harry saved his life three times in the seventh book.[13]

In the Deathly Hallows epilogue, set nineteen years after Voldemort's death (i.e. 2017), Harry and Ginny are married and have three children: James Sirius, the oldest, Albus Severus, and Lily Luna.

Movie appearances

In the six Harry Potter movies from 2001-2009, Harry Potter has been played by British actor Daniel Radcliffe. He is also to appear in the two final movies (the last part of the Harry Potter series will be divided into two movies). Radcliffe was asked to audition for the role of Harry Potter in 2000 by producer David Heyman, while in at a play titled Stones in His Pockets in London.[16][17] The Harry Potter role has earned much money for Radcliffe. As of 2007, he has an estimated wealth of £17 million.[18]

In a 2007 interview with MTV, Radcliffe stated that, for him, Harry Potter is a classic coming of age character: "That's what the films are about for me: a loss of innocence, going from being a young kid in awe of the world around him, to someone who is more battle-hardened by the end of it."[19] He also said that for him, important factors in Harry's psyche are his survivor's guilt in regard to his dead parents and his lingering loneliness. Because of this, Radcliffe talked to a bereavement counsellor to help him prepare for the role.[19] Radcliffe was quoted as saying that he wished for Harry to die in the books, but he clarified that he, "can't imagine any other way they can be concluded".[19] After reading the last book, where Harry Potter and his friends survive and have children, Radcliffe stated to be glad about the ending and lauded author J. K. Rowling for the conclusion of the story.[20]

Radcliffe stated that the most oft repeated question he has been asked is how Harry Potter has influenced his own life, to which he regularly answers it has been "fine",[21] and that he did not feel pigeonholed by the role, but rather sees it as a huge privilege to portray the character of Harry Potter.[21]

Characterisation

According to author J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter is strongly guided by his own conscience, and has a keen feeling of what is right and what is wrong. Having "very limited access to truly caring adults", Rowling said, Harry "is forced to make his own decisions from early age on."[6] He "does make mistakes", she conceded, but in the end, he does what his conscience tells him to do.[6] According to Rowling, one of Harry's pivotal scenes came in the fourth book when he protects his dead schoolmate Cedric Diggory's body from arch villain Lord Voldemort, because it shows he is brave and unselfish.[7]

Rowling also said that Harry's two worst character flaws are "anger and occasional arrogance",[13] but that Harry is also innately honourable. "He's not a cruel boy. He's competitive, and he's a fighter. He doesn't just lie down and take abuse. But he does have native integrity, which makes him a hero to me. He's a normal boy but with those qualities most of us really admire."[22] After the seventh book, Rowling commented that Harry has the ultimate character strength, being able to do what even Voldemort can not: he is not afraid of death.[13]

Rowling has also maintained that Harry is a suitable real-life role model for children. "The advantage of a fictional hero or heroine is that you can know them better than you can know a living hero, many of whom you would never meet […] if people like Harry and identify with him, I am pleased, because I think he is very likeable."[23]

Outward appearance

Rowling also gave Harry Potter an uncanny outward appearance. Throughout the entire series, Harry sports his father's perpetually untidy black hair, his mother's green eyes, and a lightning bolt-shaped scar on his forehead because of his encounter with Lord Voldemort and round, thick eyeglasses. She explained that this image simply came to her when she first thought up Harry Potter, seeing him as a "scrawny, black-haired, bespectacled boy".[1]

In the books, Harry's scar serves as an indicator of Voldemort's presence: it burns when the Dark Lord is near or feeling particularly murderous or exultant. According to Rowling, by attacking Harry when he was a baby, Voldemort gave him "tools (that) no other wizard possessed – the scar, and the ability it conferred, provided a magical window into Voldemort's mind."[24] Asked why Harry's forehead scar is lightning bolt-shaped, Rowling said, "to be honest, because it’s a cool shape," and joked, "I couldn’t have my hero sport a doughnut-shaped scar."[13]

Abilities and interests

In the books, Harry is categorised as a "half-blood" wizard in the series, because although both his parents were magical, his mother, Lily Evans, was "Muggle-born". According to Rowling, to characters for whom wizarding blood purity matters, Lily would be considered "as loathsome as a Muggle", and derogatively referred to as a "Mudblood".[24]

Throughout the series, Rowling wrote Harry Potter as a gifted wizard apprentice. She stated in a 2000 interview with South West News Service that Harry Potter is "particularly talented" in Defence Against the Dark Arts, and also good in Quidditch.[25] Rowling said in the same interview that until about halfway through the third book, his good friend Hermione Granger –written as the smartest student in Harry's year– would have beaten Harry in a magical duel. From the fourth book onwards, Rowling admits Harry has become quite talented in the Defence Against the Dark Arts and would beat his friend Hermione in a magical duel.[25] His power is evident from the beginning of the series; specifically, Harry shows immediate command of a broomstick, produces a Patronus at an early age and survives several confrontations with Voldemort. Harry is able to speak and understand Parseltongue, a language associated with Dark Magic, which, according to Rowling, is because he harbours a piece of Lord Voldemort's soul. After Voldemort destroys that soul piece in the seventh book's climax, Harry loses the ability to speak Parseltongue. Harry "is very glad" to have lost this gift.[13]

According to Rowling, Harry's favourite book is Quidditch Through the Ages, an actual book that Rowling wrote (under the pseudonym Kennilworthy Whisp) for the Comic Relief charity.

Possessions

When Harry's parents were murdered by Lord Voldemort, they left behind a large pile of wizard's gold, used as currency in the world of magic, in a vault in the wizarding bank, Gringotts. This becomes Harry's source of paying for all of his Hogwarts textbooks, wizarding clothing, and spending money.

As is the case with most wizards in the Harry Potter series, his wand is among his most valued magical items. Harry's is made of holly, a wood Rowling chose because it is said to get rid of evil.[26] It forms a deliberate contrast to the wand of his nemesis Lord Voldemort, whose wand is made of yew, which symbolises death.[26] Rowling states she later learned that in the Celtic calendar a type of wood is assigned to each month; and Harry's fictional birthday (July 31) is linked to holly. Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger also happened to get wands made from the appropriate woods identified the Celtic calendar, according to their fictional birth months.[26]

Another valued and useful possession is Harry's Cloak of Invisibility. In his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he gets it anonymously as a Christmas gift. He later learns it was given by Albus Dumbledore, who had it in turn from Harry's father.

Harry also owns half of a pair of two-way mirrors, given by his godfather Sirius Black, as a means of maintaining covert communications. In Book 7, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, when Harry and several friends are captured at Malfoy Manor, which Lord Voldemort was using as his headquarters, Harry uses the mirror to communicate with Aberforth Dumbledore, who sends rescue in the form of Dobby the House Elf.

After Sirius' death, all of his remaining possessions were passed along to Harry. This included the Black family residence, located at Number Twelve Grimmauld Place, and all the contents and furnishings of the house, including Kreacher (the old Black family House Elf). Harry also inherited the remainder of Sirius' wealth in wizard's gold at Gringotts.

Another notable possession of Harry's is a magical knife, given to him by Sirius Black. The knife has the power to open most mechanically locks and magical seals. The knife was destroyed when Harry attempted to use it on a lock in the Department of Mysteries, when instead of opening the desired lock, an enchantment destroyed the knife's blade.

By the end of Deathly Hallows, Harry possesses all three Deathly Hallows, the Cloak of Invisibility, the Resurrection Stone, and the Elder Wand, three of the most powerfully magical items in all of the wizarding-world. However, Harry lost the Resurrection Stone inside the Forbidden Forest, and decides to leave it there. Harry also takes the Elder Wand and lays it with Dumbledore's body, so the power of the wand might be extinguished if he dies a natural death. However, the new portrait of Dumbledore in the Headmaster's Office agrees that Harry should keep the Invisibility Cloak for himself, since it was his father's.

Throughout most of the books, Harry also has a pet owl named Hedwig, used to deliver and get messages and packages. When Hedwig is killed in the seventh book, the author said she expected the strong emotional reaction of her readers: "The loss of Hedwig represented a loss of innocence and security. She has been almost like a cuddly toy to Harry at times. I know that death upset a lot of people!"[13]

Family

In the novels, Harry is the only child of James and Lily Potter, but orphaned as an infant. Rowling made Harry an orphan from the early drafts of her first book. She felt an orphan would be the most interesting character to write about.[2] However, after her mother's death, Rowling wrote Harry as a child longing to see his dead parents again, incorporating her own anguish into him. Harry's aunt and uncle kept the truth about their deaths from Harry, telling him they died in a car accident.[1] Through his marriage to Ginny Weasley, Harry links the Peverell and the House of Black families. It is unknown whether there have been other links between the two families' history, but this is possible, as they are among the most prominent wizarding families.

In popular culture

in Riverdale, Bronx, New York. Note the artists' black hair and spectacles.]]

In 2002, Harry Potter was voted No. 85 among the "100 Best Fictional Characters" by Book magazine[27] and also voted the 35th "Worst Briton" in Channel 4's "100 Worst Britons We Love to Hate" program.[28] In addition, Harry Potter is spoofed in the Barry Trotter series by American writer Michael Gerber, where a "Barry Trotter" appears as the eponymous anti-hero. On his homepage, Gerber describes Trotter as an unpleasant character who "drinks too much, eats like a pig, sleeps until noon, and owes everybody money."[29] The author stated "[s]ince I really liked Rowling's books […] I felt obligated to try to write a spoof worthy of the originals."[30]

In real life, Harry's iconoclastic appearance has become cult. According to halloweenonline.com, Harry Potter sets were the fifth-best selling Halloween costume of 2005.[31] In addition, wizard rock bands like Harry and the Potters and others regularly dress up in the style of Harry Potter, sporting painted forehead scars, black wigs and round bottle top glasses.

Wizard rock is a musical movement dating from 2002 that consists of at least 200 bands made up of young musicians, playing songs about Harry Potter.[32][33] The movement started in Massachusetts with the band Harry and the Potters, who cosplay as Harry during live performances[34][35]

Harry Potter appears in the Robot Chicken episode "Nutcracker Sweet" voiced by Seth Green. He is shown to have Firebolt in a delicate place on himself. Quinton Flynn voices Harry Potter in the episode "Password: Swordfish." When the threat of the puberty creature Pubertis is known, Harry sees Dumbledore about this and receives a stone that might help him fight Pubertis. Upon confrontation with Pubertis, he rubs the stone two times, which summons ghosts to punch it. When it comes to the third time, (the stone starts "chafing") Dumbledore appears and tells Harry that the stone can only be warmed up three times (four if you take a week off) and that Pubertis cannot be destroyed since it lives in everyone.

In Epic Movie, a 2007 parody film, he is played by Canadian comedian Kevin McDonald, whereas Harry is portrayed as being somewhat of a pervert as seen when Harry tries to touch Susan Pevensie's breasts.[36]

Episodes of The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy has spoofed Harry as Nigel Planter. Unlike Harry, Nigel has an L-shaped scar on his forehead.

In an episode of The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, Potter is referenced trice, once when Jimmy is watching a real of movies rapidly (Where Hagrid says "You're a Wizard, Harry") and later in the filming for Jimmy's movie, as Jimmy plays a parody of Harry, called "Terry Bladder".

Wizards of Waverly Place once referenced Harry, as Justin was wearing a robe and glasses like Harry, to which Alex comments on with trying to guess who he looks like ("Barry something", "Jerry something", etc.)

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "J. K. Rowling Official Site – Section Biography". http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/en/biography.cfm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 ""Carey, Joanna. "Who hasn't met Harry?" Guardian Unlimited, February 16, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/0299-guardian-carey.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  3. "JK (JOANNE KATHLEEN) ROWLING (1966-), Guardian Unlimited". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0800-guardian-bio.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  4. ""Raincoast Books interview transcript, Raincoast Books (Canada), March 2001."". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2001/0301-raincoast-interview.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  5. ""J.K. Rowling on The Diane Rehm Show, WAMU Radio Washington, D.C., October 20, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/1299-wamu-rehm.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 ""Lydon, Christopher. J.K. Rowling interview transcript, The Connection (WBUR Radio), 12 October, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/1099-connectiontransc2.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 ""Jensen, Jeff. "'Fire' Storm," Entertainment Weekly, September 7, 2000"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0900-ew-jensen.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 ""Living With Harry Potter"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/1205-bbc-fry.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  9. ""JK Rowling's World Book Day Chat, March 4, 2004"". http://www.quick-quote-quill.org/articles/2004/0304-wbd.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  10. ""Richard & Judy Show"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2006/0626-ch4-richardandjudy.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  11. ""Grossman, Lev. "J.K. Rowling Hogwarts And All," Time Magazine, 17 July, 2005"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/0705-time-grossman.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  12. ""Couric, Katie.: 'J.K. Rowling, the author with the magic touch: 'It’s going to be really emotional to say goodbye,' says Rowling as she writes the last book in the Harry Potter saga,' Dateline NBC, July 17, 2005"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/0705-nbcdateline-couric.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 13.5 13.6 13.7 13.8 ""'J.K. Rowling Web Chat Transcript"". http://bloomsbury.com/jkrevent/content.asp?sec=3&sec2=1. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  14. "Wizard of the Month for October". JK Rowling. 2007-10-20. http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/en/wotm.cfm. Retrieved 2007-10-20. 
  15. JK Rowling's Interview with Meredith Vieira, July 26, 2007 Todayshow.com" Retrieved on 26 July 2007
  16. McLean, Craig (2007-07-15). "Hobnobs & broomsticks". Sunday Herald. http://www.sundayherald.com/life/people/display.var.1546220.0.0.php. Retrieved 2007-07-15. 
  17. Koltnow, Barry (2007-07-08). "One enchanted night at theater, Radcliffe became Harry Potter". East Valley Tribune. http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/story/92834?source=rss&dest=STY-92834. Retrieved 2007-07-15. 
  18. "Young People's Rich List: Daniel Radcliffe". Times Online. http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/specials/rich_list/rich_list_search/?urllink=http://www.timesonline.co.uk/richlist/person/0,,48353,00.html. Retrieved 2007-06-05. 
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Vineyard, Jennifer. "Daniel Radcliffe Talks Harry Potter's First Kiss". http://www.mtv.com/movies/news/articles/1563897/story.jhtml. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  20. ew.com. "Daniel Radcliffe: My Take on Deathly Hallows". http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20044270_20044274_20048635,00.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  21. 21.0 21.1 Lawson, Terry. "Daniel Radcliffe Talks Harry Potter". http://www.popmatters.com/pm/news/article/43745/daniel-radcliffe-talks-harry-potter/. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  22. ""O'Malley, Judy. "Talking With . . . J.K. Rowling," Book Links, July 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/0799-booklinks-omalley.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  23. ""Barnes and Noble interview, March 19, 1999"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/1999/0399-barnesandnoble.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  24. 24.0 24.1 Section: F.A.Q.
  25. 25.0 25.1 """World Exclusive Interview with J K Rowling," South West News Service, 8 July 2000"". http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0700-swns-alfie.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 Section: Extra Stuff WANDS jkrowling.com. Retrieved on August 15, 2007.
  27. Book Magazine Harry Potter among best characters in fiction since 1900, npr.com.
  28. Channel 4 - 100 Worst Britons channel4.com.
  29. ""Barry Trotter -- Glossary"". http://www.barrytrotter.com/chargloss.htm#t. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  30. ""Barry Trotter -- Frequently Asked Questions"". http://www.barrytrotter.com/faq.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  31. "Halloween Online Resource Center". http://www.halloweenonlinefind.com/. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  32. Brady, Shaun (2006-11-28). "Yule Ball rolls into Philly". The Philadelphia Daily News. http://www.philly.com/mld/dailynews/16112250.htm. Retrieved 2007-02-27. 
  33. Humphries, Rachel (2007-07-13). "Harry Potter 'Wrockers' Conjure Musical Magic". ABC News. http://abcnews.go.com/Business/FunMoney/Story?id=3371717&page=1. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  34. Davies, Shaun (2007-07-20). "The unexpected wizards of rock and roll". MSN. http://news.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=279730. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  35. Sweeney, Emily (2004-09-16). "Sibling musicians bring out the 'punk' in Harry Potter". The Boston Globe. http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2004/09/16/sibling_musicians_bring_out_the_punk_in_harry_potter/. Retrieved 2007-01-26. 
  36. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epic_Movie

Other websites

mrj:Гарри Поттер








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