The Harry Potter Lexicon Link to Main page of the Harry Potter Lexicon.

Lexicon sources This page has been updated for Book 7.

The Book of SpellsThe Book of Spells

When I was a youngster, there was no basic spell book to give a beginner witch like myself the clear and simple instructions that would have made magic a much less mysterious process. I struggled to understand the complicated instruction in the old-fashioned text books I was given at school ... When I grew up, I quickly realized that the help I had craved simply did not exist – and so I created the book you’re holding now: The Book of Spells. -- Miranda Goshawk, forward to The Book of Spells

...(T)he closest a Muggle can come to a real spellbook. I've loved working with Sony's creative team to bring my spells, and some of the history behind them, to life. -- J.K. Rowling

The Book of Spells is an augmented reality video game product which can only be played on the PlayStation using the Move Controllers. The material for the game was written by Rowling (which makes the content canon):

TGL: How important is it for Wonderbook that its first experience in Book of Spells is attached to such a high profile franchise like Harry Potter?

JS: It’s huge. Of course Harry Potter is nothing without J.K Rowling and she has actually been working with Sony on the Pottermore website for a while now. She was able to see a very early version of Wonderbook. Apparently at the very same time, she was toying around with the idea of creating a book of Harry Potter themed spells. Once she saw Wonderbook in action she thought it was a perfect fit for her book of spells idea. The two came together quite quickly.

ST: She’s done a lot more than actually lend her name to it. She’s directly involved in the making of the game. She’s written all the stories and she doesn’t directly put her name to things she doesn’t personally approve of. So, we’re often interacting with her to share ideas and to play the game with her. (source: http://www.thegamingliberty.com/2012/07/tgl-interview-london-studio-talk-wonderbook-book-of-spells/)

The Book of Spells is a 200-year-old primer used in magic schools around the world to teach students the basics of spellwork. The book was written by Miranda Goshawk. It is now kept in the Restricted Section of the Hogwarts library.

The book has been translated into seventy-two languages, including Gobbledegook and Mermish. The spells covered in the book include:

Inconsistencies:

The Book of Spells does not appear to be the same book as The Standard Book of Spells series of books required of Hogwarts students, although the two may be related (the Standard Book of Spells found on Pottermore has a similar but not identical set of spells in it, plus the Standard Book of Spells is certainly not kept in the Restricted Section, since every student is required to purchase a copy every year).

The author Miranda Goshawk is listed on the Famous Wizard cards as having been born in 1921, which doesn't match with the date given for the original creation of The Book of Spells ("two-hundred years old"). How do we rectify these discrepencies? Perhaps the original Miranda Goshawk lived two-hundred years ago and wrote The Book of Spells, while her descendent, also named Miranda Goshawk and born in 1921, revised, expanded, and updated the venerable book into a book series with one volume for each year of a student's education.

Since these spells require a wand to perform, it seems unlikely that the book would be translated into the languages of magical being who are forbidden to carry a wand (Gobbledegook is the language of Goblins while Mermish is the language of the Merpeople).

Information from Rowling's website about The Book of Spells

Harry Potter Lexicon logoAbout Us | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Copyright | ©2000 - 2014 The Harry Potter Lexicon.
NO PART OF THIS PAGE MAY BE REPRODUCED IN ANY MANNER WITHOUT PERMISSION.
HARRY POTTER, characters, names, and all related indicia are trademarks of Warner Bros. ©2001-2014.

Page layout by Lisa Waite Bunker and Steve Vander Ark, banner graphics by Camilla Engelby © 2007.

Primary editor: Steve Vander Ark
Original page date 2 January 2014; Last page update 3 January 2014 SVA