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"Ladies and gentlemen, what an extraordinary moment this is! The perfect moment for me to make a little announcement I've been sitting on for some time!"
     -- Gilderoy Lockhart (CS4)

The Harry Potter Lexicon web site is constantly being revised, expanded, and edited. New information is added on a daily basis. It would be impossible to list every change here on this page. However, you will find listed here any new pages that have been added as well as major revisions. You'll also find any news about the Lexicon. Our goal is to make this web site the most complete and thorough resource about the Harry Potter universe available anywhere, in any format. You can help us reach that goal by filling out a feedback form. Let us know how we're doing and give us your suggestions for improvement.

Thanks for visiting the Harry Potter Lexicon!

December 27, 2004
Happy birthday! No, it's not some Harry Potter character this time. It's two people, actually. By a wonderful quirk of fate, Melissa Anelli of The Leaky Cauldron and I share a birthday, which is today, the 27th of December. I have no idea what Mel is doing to celebrate hers, but I have some pretty nice plans for mine. I'm hoping to spend some time working on the Lexicon, which is my favorite hobby. When I'm not doing that, I plan to play Metroid Prime on my GameCube until my eyes bug out. By the way, I have no idea how old Mel is, but I do know that I'm considerably older than she is. Happy birthday, Mel :)

December 25, 2004
Yeah, July 16, I know! I have a feeling that I'm the only fan who read that and panicked. I started looking hard at what needs to be finished around here before then, and it's a bit daunting. It looks like it's going to be an exciting seven months!

I uploaded a new page which might be of some interest. I received a lot of comments about the Open Letter to Jo. In response to some of those comments, I've started working on a page with notes about some of the questions that were asked in the Open Letter and about some of the responses Jo has given. I'm not finished with all the commentary, but then Jo isn't done with all her answers yet either. I'll continue to update this page as I get a chance and as Jo answers the questions.

One more thing: the Floo Network page has been updated again. Take a look if you get a chance.

December 17, 2004
Christmas is early! We just couldn't wait. The Floo Network is pleased to announce its holiday gift to you, our loyal readers. We are delighted to welcome a new website, Madam Scoop's, to the Network. The Floo Network, which brings you the best Harry Potter resources on the planet, now consists of The Harry Potter Lexicon, The Leaky Cauldron, Madam Scoop's, The Hogwarts Galleries, and Quick Quotes Quill.

Madam Scoop's organizes all of the interviews Rowling has done in the last five years, the text of which can be found in the existing Quick Quotes website. For example, if you want to read everything Jo has said about Draco, you will find those quotes listed on Scoop's site, linked to the original source interviews on Quick Quotes. Is that cool or what? The Scoop's team has also taken up the management and upkeep of the QQQ site, so the two will become more and more integrated as time goes by, making a amazingly useful resource even better.

In order to make it easy for you to access these wonderful websites, John Noe, our resident designer, has created a delightful new "main quotes page" where you can choose either Quick Quotes or Madam Scoop's. This page is worth a visit all on its own (and if you don't 'get it' at first, look closer!). A click on the Quotes link on any Floo Network navigation bar will take you there.

I want to say a huge welcome to the folks on the Scoop's team, say a tremendous thank you to John, Mel, and BK, and on top of all that, to welcome to the Lexicon staff Lisa Bunker (a member of the Scoop's team), who has agreed to help out with our character pages here on the Lexicon. Lisa brings experience with web design to her Lexicon work and you will no doubt see some changes in our page designs over the next few weeks as we incorporate some of her advice and ideas.

Lisa isn't the only new addition to the Lexicon staff. Belinda Hobbs has taken over as editor of the Lexicon's www.jkrowling.com pages. She will be adding new information about Jo's site and keeping the timeline up to date. Belinda is a friend I met for the first time at Convention Alley. She runs a forum on Fiction Alley devoted to Jo's website.

With the addition of Belinda and Lisa, our Lexicon staff now consists of:

Steve Vander Ark - creator and editor-in-chief
Penny Linsenmeyer - Communications - answers email and manages ongoing projects
Josh Santilli - Assistant Editor and editor of the Floo Network page
Mike Ball - Reader's Guide editor
Lisa Bunker - Web design consultant and Assistant editor - character pages
Belinda Hobbs - Assistant editor - www.jkrowling.com information pages
Michele Worley - Senior Editor, on hiatus at the moment

December 10, 2004
Just updated the timelines with Hermione's birthyear, just revealed on Jo's site. There are more details, but they will have to wait until this evening. Let me just say again how thrilling it is to have this kind of direct line from Jo. (And just how thrilling it is to have a few more of the Open Letter questions answered!)

December 6, 2004
If you haven't already seen it, check out the holiday version of our main menu. Thanks to Laura Freeman, whose artwork already graces many pages of the Lexicon, our friends Moony, Wormtail,  Padfoot, and Prongs are having a bit of fun with their favorite Slytherin. We can't thank Laura enough for her wonderful contribution to the Lexicon. (By the way, Laura is the artist whose marauder illustration Jo said she kept on her desk because it was so good. And now she did this for the Lexicon. Yeah, pretty cool. Makes me want to jump up and down and chant "We got Laura!" over and over.) [Note: if you don't see the new version, you may need to refresh the page.]

November 29, 2004
Did some updating on the new guide to Jo's website. Then I noticed that she'd added Bill's birthday on November 29. I figured I'd quickly add that to the timelines...

But wait. If Bill was born on November 29, that means he turned eleven the year BEFORE he started Hogwarts. And that means...I have to make a decision. What did Jo mean when she said that Bill was two years older than Charlie? If she meant that he was two CALENDAR years older, Bill would have been only one year ahead of Charlie in school. If, on the other hand, she meant two SCHOOL years older, Bill would have been born a year earlier than I currently have him listed. After thinking it over, I decided to that it's much more likely that Jo was thinking about school years when she made that statement. After all, the stories are all told in school year intervals. So I went in and edited the timelines to put Bill's birth year as 1970 instead of 1971. I adjusted his age for every year after that. Now it's very late and I don't know if I'll stay up to find all the other references to Bill's age and fix them. Don't bother emailing me about it. I'll catch them as soon as I can.

And what revisions will I have to make when we find out Charlie's birthdate?

November 25, 2004
A couple of new pages have been added:

  • a page listing various competitions in the Wizarding World, including the Daily Prophet Grand Prize Galleon Draw and the annual Swedish broom race.

  • a page listing organizations such as the B.O.G. (Brotherhood of Goblins) and S.P.E.W.

  • an expanded guide to Jo's website in our "sources of Lexicon information" section

November 14, 2004
I'm working very hard to catch up on essays which have been waiting in my work pile for so long. This evening I added one entitled ...and I Grew Up With Percy... which I really enjoy. A beautiful drawing by Marta T. of the Weasley siblings appears on the page, too. Check it out.

November 13, 2004
Thanks to Trish Drasnin, I have now posted the synopses of all four Daily Prophet newsletters which Jo wrote in the late 1990s for Bloomsbury. Sorry, I don't have permission to reprint them word for word (although Jo, if you're reading this, please consider letting me do so!). However, I have added a few scans which show what the pages look like. Information from these newsletters is to be found throughout the Lexicon. [UPDATE: the link is now fixed.]

November 11, 2004
Well, here's another tiny little mystery cleared up. I have just received word from a very reliable source that this sentence of Fudge's on page 613 of the UK version of Goblet of Fire is incorrect:

"You'll forgive me, Dumbledore, but I've heard of a curse scar acting as an alarm bell before..."
The correct version of that sentence is the one that appears in the US edition (on page 706). It should read:
"You'll forgive me, Dumbledore, but I've never heard of a curse scar acting as an alarm bell before..."
I know, it's not a big deal, but this particular discrepency has generated some debate on the forums over the past few years and I thought it would be nice to get it cleared up.

We now return to our regularly scheduled Lexicon.

November 7, 2004
Well, you might already see one thing that's new...the font on this page. We're gradually changing every page in the Lexicon to this new font, Georgia, since it's designed to be particularly easy to read on a web page. Josh and I are changing each page that we edit, so it might be a while before we catch them all, but who knows...maybe I'll figure out some way to trick Dreamweaver into changing them all at once. I have a feeling it would be able to do that.

Of course, some of you are wondering why I don't just change the style sheet, but since I don't use style sheets on the Lexicon that's not a possibility. I know, I know, it seems crazy that a site as large and complex as the Lexicon doesn't use some of these modern site tools, but you have to realize that the Lexicon started five years ago when all I knew how to do was put a simple HTML page together. I've learned quite a bit since then, but the site is still written in fairly simple HTML. Now that there are over 700 pages, it's a bit hard to retrofit.

Someday I'd like to turn the Lexicon into a database-run site, but that might just never happen. To convert a site as complex as the Lexicon, with it's complicated interlinking,  into a database would be a huge job indeed. If it weren't for Dreamweaver's ability to manage links site-wide, I don't know how I'd manage it the way it is.

Okay, enough on that.

Many, many pages have been updated and edited. I've been concentrating on adding new pages to the the Reader's Guides, along with Mike Ball, who is our page editor, and Matt Allair, who is writing the amazing chapter chronologies. So far the book with the most chapters in place is Prisoner of Azkaban. Take a look at our progress when you get a chance (go through the Bookshelf link on the main menu). Things are a bit wonky in spots--I noticed that the chapter art is a bit off, for example--and quite a few things are currently "Still to come." But overall it's a great resource in the making. I'll make a big announcement when the entire PA Guide is done.

Josh has been working all over the site editing and correcting. He's been fixing broken links and typos here and there. He's also updated the Floo Network page with some wonderful new information, including a very nice new feature called Transfiguration Today and weather feeds from the dragon reserve in Romania and from Beauxbatons.  There's one from the Ministry of Magic, too, and you never know WHAT that one might say. If you get a chance, drop Josh a line and tell him what you think (and give answers to the trivia test).

Several new artists have been brought on board recently, including Riikka Jäntti, TeaWithVoldy, and Red Scharlach. You can find out more about them on the Artists page and you'll find their work on various pages throughout the site.

October 29, 2004
I've done a lot of editing of the timeline, thanks to helpful suggestions and error-checking from a lot of you. Thanks so much for helping out. I also added a new page, a "year calendar," which lists birthdays and other dates of importance through the year. This will obviously be updated regularly as Jo adds birthdays to her site. Molly Weasley's is October 30, according to the latest update at jkrowling.com, so I added that detail to Molly's page.

Finally, after months in limbo, Angua's essay about Harry and Hermione's compatibility (or lack thereof) has been posted. Sorry that took so long, folks. Michele was working on it but when four successive hurricanes hit her, she found herself a bit, uh, distracted from Lexicon work.

October 24, 2004
Okay! It's done! It took me four days, but I've finished a complete update of the timeline. There have been a lot of corrections and additions (and I'm still working on adding some of the information about who won the House and Quidditch Cups for the last ten years). And hey, check this out:

Y-1 (1979)  M=19  BW=8  CW=6  PW=3  FGW=1  LM=25
See those little notes in red after the date? That means that in that year (1979 in the example above) the marauders turned 19, Bill Weasley turned 8, Charlie Weasley turned 6, Percy turned 3, Fred and George turned 1, and Lucius Malfoy turned 25. I've added that to every year after 1971 (which is when Bill was born) and also to the years when McGonagall, Hagrid, and Tom Riddle were at Hogwarts. Is that cool or what?

Oh, and if you're curious about the "Y-1" thing, check out this page.

October 17, 2004
I was delighted to see the answer to another of my Open Letter questions on Jo's website today. I have added the October 17 birthday to Flitwick's page along with the first name Filius for sure. It's just nice to know. Thanks, Jo.

I have also turned on the link for the Bookshelf on the main menu. Now tell me, are those cool graphics on that page or what? The Reader's Guides for each chapter are being expanded and linked there, along with (soon) some more reviews and other things.

Other details? I've done enough editing and site managing that I had to re-synch the entire site twice this afternoon. So what's new? A lot of things, just all over the place. Can you tell that it was closing night of our play last night and I finally have some time to put into the Lexicon?

(And Diana, I fixed the grammatical error in the little blurb I wrote about you yesterday...Boy, she's tough!)

October 15, 2004
I'm doing more editing today--nothing huge to report yet, although we'll see what I get done. I do want to mention that the graphic on the main menu page for the sixth book has been  missing the hyphen ever since I created it. That's because when the title was first announced, it was written without that hyphen. It's been officially added to the title since then -- now it's Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince--but the graphic that I originally created hadn't been updated. Well, Diana Patterson (whom I met in Ottawa and who would be a natural to play McGonagall if Maggie Smith ever decided to give up the part) decided to help me out and redo the graphic for me. I think it was driving her crazy to see it wrong on the page. So thanks to Diana, I've updated the cover image with the corrected title.

October 13, 2004
Ah, the fun of switching servers. I think I've caught all the really bad errors -- like missing six or seven main character pages and transferring an out of date version of the "Explore the Wizarding World" page and forgetting to transfer the entire atlas section. Josh has been going through things trying to catch the occasional broken link and missing graphic (and there still are a few, I think). If you spot anything that's still broken, by all means send a email our way.

One thing that a few folks mentioned is that two of the new text links at the top of the page aren't working. The link that says START is still in the works, so that one may be waiting a few weeks yet. As for STORE, I'm in a bit of a hold on that. I'm redesigning the logo so that it fits the space a little better and will be reopening the store very soon. Once again, I'll have mugs, t-shirts, and totes available with the Lexicon logo on them. So why are the bits still there even if the links are working? Well, that's me being a bit lazy, really. I wanted to see how it looked with all the links in place --  how the spacing worked on the page, if I needed more or less links, that sort of thing. So I included them all, and then just didn't bother taking the non-working ones back off again. Same with the link to the Bookshelf down at the bottom.

New stuff in the Lexicon itself:

  • adding the ghosts to the Which Wizard section, still have some to go

  • a new poem was added to the Concordance, under the heading "Sadness."

  • more coming soon...

October 4, 2004
First of all, many thanks to Jo Rowling for taking the time to answer a couple of the questions on the Open Letter which I posted on the main page a few weeks ago. We're all very grateful for the information. We'll get that integrated into the Lexicon as soon as possible.

Secondly, I have finally migrated the Lexicon over to the new sever. I did it very, very carefully, but even so I disovered a major error the moment it went live. Figures. I fixed that right away, but I wouldn't be surprised if something else crops up. If you spot a broken link, feel free to email it to info@hp-lexicon.info and we'll jump right on it.

September 19, 2004
I've updated the text menu to keep up with the fancy graphics one. Both main menus now include links to the letter which I wrote to Jo Rowling on the advice of her solicitor, a letter asking for some factual details about the Wizarding World. They also include links to the Floo page, the Lexicon Store on CafePress, and the Muggle Encyclopedia. The new Concordance also got a link, although that section is waiting for content. There's not a lot to see there yet. If you're interested in contributing to the Concordance, click that link and read the guidelines.

The beginning of September is always a frantically busy time for me. The new theatre season starts along with the new school year. I've still be editing here and there, but it will take another week or so before I can put any serious time into the Lexicon. New stuff is on the way, though. Michele and I have a couple of essays in the works, both in the editing process, and Josh has updated the Floo Page too.

Things just keep a'rollin' along.

September 11, 2004
The Floo Network page has a temporary home. Until we can get the correct location working, Josh has uploaded the current page here: http://www.floo-network.org/. We'll update the links on our main menu and ask TLC to post a notice for us.

Also just added an excellent new website to the Resources Page. "Madam Scoop's Index to J.K. Rowling's Interviews" includes a thematic index which will be a great help to fans.

September 11, 2004
Let me just say that I have nothing but high praise for the staff of PhoenixSong.net. A few days ago I wrote about a disturbing thread which appeared on that website recently. The posts on that thread made some extremely nasty insinuations about the Lexicon and about Penny, who is one of our staff members. When this came to light, the staff of PhoenixSong.net handled the matter very professionally and with admirable speed. They understood why the things that had been said on that thread were hurtful and went out of their way to make things right. I and my staff appreciate their decisive handling of this problem.

The Floo Network page, which is linked on the top of our menus and which is now edited by Josh, still has't been updated since August. The problem is that we can't seem to access it. I'm not sure why that is, but we've been working on it for a week now. I'm sorry about this...as we switch our content to the new server, we are having problems setting up access. We're hoping to have this problem fixed yet this weekend. The Lexicon also has yet to be moved, simply because our access isn't working.

September 7, 2004
I've just uploaded something that I've been working on for the last week. It's a new analysis of the Weasley children's ages which includes sort of the history of Gryffindor Quidditch over the last decade or so. I finished it this weekend while camping at Ludington State Park in Michigan. Go there sometime. It's absolutely wonderful.

September 6, 2004
I rececently was directed to this very disturbing post on the PhoenixSong.net forum. The insinuations are nasty enough that I decided I needed to respond directly. I am not a member of that forum so I couldn't respond there. Hopefully the people involved in that discussion will notice this. Here's the post:

The Harry Potter Lexicon essay (or should I say, shameless piece of H/Hr propaganda, since an essay is only an essay if you also bring in a few points that contradict your views) called Partners and Friends is written by Penny Linsenmayer. If you check out the names of the website's staff, you'll see that Penny Linsenmayer is also in charge of email and project managment, and that she's the most likely to see any emails that are sent to the Lexicon first.
My question: Do we think it is a coincidence that Angua's essay hasn't been put up yet?
First of all, just to be clear, the essay that is being attacked is this one by Penny about Harry and Hermione.

Penny's essay was written long before she came on staff. I chose the essay a year ago to be included in the Lexicon. The reason I chose it was because Rowling had made a number of comments suggesting that romance would be more a part of the books. With that in mind, I decided that essays that were canon-based and which discussed the various "shipping" points of view would be a good addtion to the Lexicon. Penny's was the first one that came across my inbox. I don't pay the slightest attention to the whole shipping thing, so I published it without realizing that people were going to get all upset. I started getting email from people who were shocked that I would publish a shipping essay, although I think what they were most shocked about was that I had published a shipping essay didn't agree with their particular ship. I wrote them all back and suggested that they write and submit an essay of their own about a different ship. To date I have yet to receive any essays in return. I would love to have a nice set of essays, covering all reasonable ships, bus so far I haven't gotten them.

I have no record of an essay submitted by anyone named Angua about any topic at all. However, it is possible that she did submit one and it's lost in my email. You see, earlier this year I realized that I just couldn't handle the influx of email and submissions and so I took Penny on board to help with that. She started working on staff about three months ago. She does help me manage projects, but she doesn't act as a filter, controlling what gets to me. I get all the same email she does. She just answers it for me and tracks projects that I choose to pursue.

If you know Penny, you know that she is as fair and impartial as anyone could be. She would never, ever block an essay simply because the topic didn't agree with one she'd written. I can honestly say that she would actually CHAMPION an essay which presented good, canon-based arguements. She appreciates different points of view very much. Penny does not deserve to be criticized for any of this. If you don't like the choice of essays on the Lexicon, the only person to be angry with is me--I'm the one who does the choosing.

In case you're wondering, I do have my own prediction about which "ships" are likely to be correct. I would imagine that others on my staff do as well. The only one that I know of for sure is Penny because of her essay. The rest of us have never discussed that topic and I honestly have no idea how anyone else stands on the shipping issue. I don't use my own personal opinion to choose essays, I can assure you, since my prediction is NOT Harry and Hermione. I wouldn't have revealed that except that I think it's important to set the record straight.

No, I'm not going to tell you who I do think belongs with whom, although some of you who heard me speak at ConventionAlley may have an idea of who I think is best suited for Harry.

Angua, if you're out there, please email me. And if anyone knows these people on PhoenixSong.net, please ask them to read this note.

August 29, 2004
A few of the cooler new things on the Lexicon:

  • added a site to the page for the first film which gives 360° virtual tours of various sites in Britain, including some HP film locations
  • added a new site to the Resources page which had me laughing out loud...it's a dictionary of British terms written in a very droll, witty style
  • began adding new icons to the Which Wizard (ghosts, paintings, the Inquisitorial Squad) and Bestiary (harder to describe in a few words...check out the Bestiary main page for explanations) sections of the Lexicon - still working on adding these to all pages, but we're working on it
  • added a new short essay entitled Quirrell's Leave of Absence, by Melissa Erin Friedline, to the Quirrell page
August 20, 2004
As usual, there has been a lot of editing over the last few weeks. I've been working through a backlog of hundreds of emails to find fixes and additions that needed to be made. Josh has been doing the bulk of the editing. You might spot some of the changes as you wander around the Lexicon. One way to tell if we've been there is to look at the date on the bottom of the page. We're using a new date format which is easier to read for our international users. This was Josh's idea, since he's in Australia and he found my old method of putting the month before the date to be confusing. Now we write the dates in this form: 15-Aug-2004.

I've been doing some other behind the scenes work as well, such as creating graphics for some new sections of the Lexicon which I'm hoping to debut soon, and working on a CafePress store to sell Lexicon t-shirts and mugs. I'm doing this mostly because I want to buy them, but who knows, maybe some of you will want to pick one up. Actually, they're pretty cool--I put a nice quote from Jo on the back of the shirt ("This is such a great site...my natural home.") There are only a couple of products in the store at this point, but I'll be adding more over the next couple of weeks.

I don't know if you know this, but the Lexicon is hosted on the same server as The Leaky Cauldron, Quick Quotes, and the Floo Network page. Recently,  TLC acquired a new server through the generosity of many of you. This new server, cleverly named Serverus, is our new home as well as Leaky's, and the entire Lexicon will be moved there. That also means that there will come a point in the next day or two when the Lexicon might be temporarily inaccessable. Please be patient about things like this.

One last new thing: Josh will be taking over as the editor of the Floo Network page. He'll be updating it at least once a week, so keep your eyes open for new material. He has some great ideas for the page. I'll continue to write the Crystal Ball section myself, but Josh is doing the rest. You can email him at josh@hp-lexicon.info with ideas, comments, and suggestions.

August 3, 2004
Just a quick note. I'm on vacation, currently in Quebec City, and I happen to have internet available in my hotel, which is pretty darn nice. I had a wonderful time at Convention Alley and now I and my family will be vacationing in Canada for a few days. I haven't done much writing on this trip (been too busy!) but I did add Neville's birthday (July 30) to the Longbottom page, the Which Wizard page, and the Master Timeline. Now I'm going to bed.

July 24, 2004
More big news. The Lexicon is now being translated into Chinese. A team is forming to begin work and they hope to have the site operational within six months.

I also just have to take a moment to express the best wishes of the Lexicon staff to Jo and Neil on the good news of the new baby! That's going to be a busy household, I think. How old will David be when his little sister or brother is born? Two? I remember two with my own kids. Jessica will be a big help, though, I'm sure. She will be eleven just a few days from now and about 12 when the baby is born. At any rate, we here at the Lexicon couldn't be happier for all of you.

Updates here and there tonight, including a very interesting bit of information on one of Dumbledore's names.

July 20, 2004
Still more edits and additions all over the place. There are a couple of things that deserve a mention here. First, I have updated the page of spells from the films and games to correct the entry on the spell Arresto Momentum. Penny begged me to get to that one because of all the email she was getting.

Secondly, and more importantly, I have added a new editor to the Lexicon staff. As many of you have probably realized, the job of editing a site this large was just too massive for Michele and I to keep up with. We have received plenty of emails pointing out corrections that needed to be made but we've had no time to get to them. Our new editor, Josh Santilli, will be helping to handle some of the backlog of editing jobs and also working on some of our newer projects. His staff email address is josh@hp-lexicon.info. Feel free to drop him an email to welcome him. If he doesn't respond right away, it's probably because we're going to be keeping him busy! Welcome aboard, Josh.

July 18, 2004
More and more new stuff. 

  • added some information to the page of Titles and Honorifics
  • added even more new information all through the pages of Wizards
  • added a new website to the Resources page
  • pretty much finished the Non-Wizard Characters page, which includes Grawp and Karkus as well as all the Hags, Goblins, Vampires, and Giants from the Famous Wizard cards.
  • added a page listing the strange creatures that Luna Lovegood believed to be real
And I do need to officially announce the addition to the Lexicon of The Muggle Encyclopedia. This new section of our site is an alphabetical listing of the people, places, and things in Rowling's world. It includes details of her personal life as well as information about the publication of the books. Ever wonder who the people are who the books are dedicated to? You'll find that in the Muggle Encyclopedia. Want to learn more about how Jo's typewritten manuscript ended up catching the eye of the folks at the Christopher Little Agency? The Muggle Encyclopedia is the place to look. Like the rest of the Lexicon, the Muggle Encycliopedia might very well never be "finished." For example, we hope to add more information about the films, including more entries for the various actors and actresses who have brought our favorite characters to life.  I am also still in the process of adding links to the text, which was compiled and written be Penny Linsenmayer. 

By the way, you can click on many of the books mentioned in the Muggle Encyclopedia and be taken directly to a page of our partner site, Amazon.com, where you can buy a copy of that book. Any books that are purchased through those links will help to support the Lexicon, since a small percentage of the cost is paid to the Lexicon support fund. 

July 12, 2004
Many, many edits and additions:

July 1, 2004
What's new indeed! We were delighted and a bit stunned to discover that the Lexicon was chosen by Jo to receive her Fan Site Award. I can't even tell you what an honor it is to know that Jo actually visits the Lexicon every so often while writing her books, using the site for research. All of us here on staff at the Lexicon were thrilled--okay, we were a little bit past "thrilled." More like delirious.

However, shortly after the award was announced I was brought solidly back to earth when someone posted a comment saying "Well, with all the errors in the Lexicon, if there are mistakes in book six, we'll know who to blame." You know, it really struck me how true that is. Oh, I don't think we'll really have to blame the Lexicon if there are any errors in the next book, but I know it is true that people count on the Lexicon to be accurate. It is also true, unfortunately, that we aren't always as accurate as we'd like to be. There are errors. Sometimes these errors are the result of new information which hasn't yet been added to the Lexicon, such as the new information about Dean Thomas. Other errors happen because of typing mistakes. Still others are assumptions that creep into what we write, even though we work very hard to keep that from happening. What ever the reason, the fact is that there are errors in the Lexicon. I--along with the anonymous writer of that complaint--certainly do hope that Rowling doesn't accidentally add one of those errors to Half Blood Prince.

Another person complained that he could only hope that this award might spur us here on staff to be a bit more responsive to emails. Apparently, he had emailed me and I had never answered him. That's also sadly been a fact of life around here. I just don't always have time to answer emails. To be perfectly honest with you, I have spent at least as much time answering emails in the last three months as I have working on content for the Lexicon. But I'm still behind, and I feel bad about it. I recently discovered an email from a librarian who wanted permission to use material from the Lexicon for a local library Harry Potter party. That email from from last August. I'd never answered her. You can about imagine how mortified I was to discover that! So the person who complained is absolutely correct. Responses have been hard to come by.

As a result of this, I have started adding a few staff people to help fix some of the problems. First of all, I have added someone to assist me in handling email, ongoing projects, contact information, and so on. Penny Linsenmayer has taken that position and some of you may already have received email from her in response to an email you sent to the :Lexicon. She's going to be our main contact person. If necessary, she'll forward things to others of the staff to handle. Penny is a remarkable person who will be able to manage things brilliantly for us. We're thrilled to have her on board.

As for fixing errors, I'm hoping to add an editor soon to handle some of that load, but I'm still in the process of finding the right person for the job. Since Penny will be handling some of the email chores, I hope to have more time available myself to do editing over the next weeks. Hopefully we can get some of those errors fixed soon. Maybe I'll even get around to changing the references to Dean Thomas being Muggle-born...

There are three more new staff member to mention. The team leaders for the three editing groups now have Lexicon email addresses which will allow some of you to contact them directly. Here they are:
cronista@hp-lexicon.info (Spanish version)
pierre@hp-lexicon.info (French version)
jonathan@hp-lexicon.info (Hebrew version)

I am so grateful for all the warm wishes, the emails of encouragement, the folks who contacted us just to celebrate with us. And of course, thanks, Jo, for your support and vote of confidence. Thanks for letting us know that we've helped you out. If there was one thing you could have said to make all the effort worthwhile, that was it. 


June 28, 2004
I have been asked two questions a lot lately. Here are the answers.

  • I think the third movie is unbelievably awesome and incredible. Yes, I see flaws, but only in that it was edited a bit too far, so that  some important information was inexplicably left out (e.g. Lupin's relationaship to the map). But the film itself was brilliant and I couldn't be more pleased. I wish I could afford to go see it a few more times.
  • No, I don't think the title of the sixth book is Harry Potter and the Pillar of Storge. 
June 27, 2004
New stuff all over the place and a couple of really cool new things. Here are the main changes and additions:
  • I've finally added the Stinging Hex, so you can all stop emailing me now :) 
  • New page of spells, the ones from the films and games. I made this a separate page because so many of the spells just don't fit into the world Rowling created for the books. Now I know I had a list of the spells from the films laying around here but I can't find it. If anyone wants to email a list with correct spellings (since I don't know how to turn the subtitles on with my DVD player) that would be great. I know I'm missing some yet.
  • After several years of listening to pleas from fans from all over the world and after much consideration of how to manage it, I've started the process of creating versions of the Lexicon in other languages besides English. Here's the way I decided to set it up. For each language, I've made contact with a group of people who are able to undertake the enormous task of translating all the information in the Lexicon. In one case, the team didn't create a mirror image of the Lexicon but rather created their own encyclopedia site using the information in the Lexicon. In another case, the team is trying to recreate the Lexicon exactly, even creating identical graphics. So far I have three (and a possible fourth) teams working on this. The Spanish site is up and running and I have now added a link to it on the main index page. The French and Hebrew sites are in the works. I have had some contact with a group from Russia who is interested in working with me, but we haven't finalized anything yet. 

  • I know that there are fans in other countries who would love to see a translation happen in their language, but I have to be a bit careful. This is a HUGE commitment, to translate something as big as the Lexicon. I don't want to have anyone say they're going to do it and then give up. Also, I ask those who translate the Lexicon to follow the same standards for excellence that we ask of ourselves for the English version. I am hoping to find teams in some other countries over the next months, but I'm being very careful about this. Please don't bother volunteering unless you have the people, resources, expertise, and time to make it happen.
  • I have alist of all the new cards from the Prisoner of Azkaban game. I just need time to enter them in the Lexicon -- hopefully soon! Many thanks to Eduardo Blake for once again providing me with so much excellent information.
  • I've added a page to the Quidditch section describing the various professional Quidditch pitches around Britain, all located on deserted moors, of course. Most of these come from the Daily Prophets, which Rowling wrote in the late 1990s.
June 19, 2004 (2:30 am)
Here's the next of the Big Things I mentioned a few days ago.

The Lexicon has learned that Rowling is sending out revisions to the various editing and translating teams who are working on her books. So far she has sent out a list of two small changes to book three which fix minor Flints in the text. These changes will now become the official version of the story. Here are the changes she has dictated so far (notes are for the Bloomsbury edition):

Chapter 3, page 38, line 8 from the bottom - two (weeks) becomes three.
In the US edition, I believe that is this line, on page 44, 3rd line from the bottom:
"So all that remains, " said Fudge, now buttering himself a second crumpet, "is to decide where you're going to spend the last two weeks of your vacation..."
which would become
"So all that remains, " said Fudge, now buttering himself a second crumpet, "is to decide where you're going to spend the last three weeks of your vacation..."

Chapter  4, page 53, line 20 from the bottom - twice disappears and the line will read: they've even ended up in the Forbidden Forest!
In the US edition, that is on page 65, about in the middle of the page:
"I don't want to make him miserable, I want to put him on his guard," roared Mr. Weasley. "You know what Harry and Ron are like, wandering off by themselves -- they've ended up in the Forbidden Forest twice!"
which now becomes
"I don't want to make him miserable, I want to put him on his guard," roared Mr. Weasley. "You know what Harry and Ron are like, wandering off by themselves -- they've even ended up in the Forbidden Forest!"

I am told that there are more changes on the way, and I will post them here as they become available. 

June 15, 2004
It's official. Blaise Zabini is a wizard. As with Professor Sinistra, one of the translation teams needed to know the gender of that particular character because in the language they're working with, it matters for their choice of words (in this case Portuguese). I didn't know the answer, athough I was fairly sure Blaise was a boy's name, so they checked with JKR. The word came back today that Blaise is in fact a boy. 

Updates, edits, and additions all through the Lexicon these days. There are one or two Big Things coming, but I'll wait on those until they're ready to go. 

May 30, 2004
It's Memorial Day weekend and we're camping for a few days. Every year, this weekend marks the beginning of the time when my schedule settles down quite a bit and I get a lot more time to work on the Lexicon. A few years ago, I created both the Bestiary and the Atlas over a Memorial Day weekend. I'm not nearly as ambitious this time around (partly because I'm reading the second Artemis Fowl book and enjoying it immensely). But I've done a lot of additions and edits in the last day or two, so I'll try to list some of them here:

  • Games and Sports - I did a lot of editing of this page, which was really quite out of date, and added notes on Gobstones, Wizard Chess, and Wizard Dueling. 
  • Daily Prophet - As I mentioned below, I've been adding information from The Daily Prophet newsletters from Bloomsbury's Harry Potter Fan Club. I realize that most of you, like me, had never heard of these newsletters, so I've added a page where I give some more details about what's in each one. If I can get permission from Bloomsbury, I'd love to reproduce the entire newsletters here; stay tuned for more on this. In the meantime, I've detailed the first of the newsletters on that page.
  • new material has been added to the Strictly British page, several of the spell encyclopedia pages., and the Abbreviations page.
  • I've finally gotten around to updating the Quidditch section of the Lexicon. Pretty much all of the Quidditch Handbook is finished, including the new Encyclopedia of Quidditch, which lists terms, fouls, plays, and other information.
May 20, 2004
I've received a few emails over the last week asking whether I would be including things like the Dean Thomas backstory on the Lexicon. This is a bit of a problem, one which I've been strugging with ever since Rowling's website went live. Here's the puzzle for me: Is information from Jo's website canon or not? 

On one level, the answer is a resounding YES! She wrote it. What better definition of canon is that? On the other hand, since it isn't actually included in a book so far, she could easily change it if she ever found a place to use it. Take the infamous "Weasley cousin," for example. Mafalda (as we now know she was named) exists in Jo's notebooks, she's included on the website...but she was written out of the story completely. She won't be included in the books because her part has been folded into that of Rita Skeeter. So is Malada a canon character?

Actually, we've been dealing with this question for quite some time now. We've debated the canonicity of the Famous Wizard cards, comments from interviews, and all sorts of other details that have come to light. In the end, I decided to go ahead and include pretty much all of it. I'm going to keep doing that with this new material. I figure I'll make sure the source is clearly indicated and let each of you make the decision for yourselves. So you can look for the rest of the information from Jo's website on the Lexicon soon. It will be referenced with the abbreviation JKR, so you can take it or leave it. 

Now that I've said that, let me tell you about another new source of what could be canon information that has come to light. In the late 1990s, Bloomsbury set up a Harry Potter Fan Club. They discontinued the club with the release of book four. Thanks to an original member of that fan club, Huw Griffiths, and his mother, Trish Drasnin, I have copies of the Daily Prophet newletter which Bloomsbury sent out during that time. These newsletters bear the unmistakable stamp of Rowling's writing. They have a copyright notice on the bottom saying © J. K. Rowling. There are some details which correspond to facts in other sources. To the best of my ability to determine, these are written by Rowling herself. Therefore, I'm going to start including some of the facts from the Daily Prophet newsletters in the Lexicon. They will be referenced with the abbreviation DP.

May 16, 2004
First of all, let me say a huge thank you to everyone who emailed to alert me to the new J.K. Rowling website. Thanks especially to Heidi and Kip, who called almost simultaneously to tell me about the site, one on my home phone and the other on my cell phone. It's wonderful having good friends who are fans to share exciting events like this with.

I actually discovered the site Saturday morning, just before some friends arrived from Florida who we hadn't seen for a while. We were busy all day, so it wasn't until evening that I had time to poke around on Rowling's site. Ever since, the sounds of wind blowing, dogs barking, doorbells ringing, etc. have been coming out of our home computers as both my son and I explore Jo's wonderful gift to fans. We just keep leaving it on the screen in case something else interesting happens. 

I think I've found every tidbit of new information and I'll be going through and updating the Lexicon for the next day or two. In the meantime, feel free to email and let me know things you think I may have missed or anything new that appears. I won't have time to visit the new site all the time, so I would appreciate folks being on the lookout for things for me.

May 2, 2004
After several months of delay, I finally have uploaded an essay that Prefect Marcus sent me. It's a very well-done analysis of the "potions riddle" which Hermione solved on the way to finding the Stone under Hogwarts. I have also uploaded a new essay by Connie Ann Kirk, the author of the new biography of J.K.Rowling which was published recently by Greenwood Books. Connie's essay, called "Imagi(c)nation in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone," discusses the relationship between imagination and magic in Rowling's world view. 

Back in March I noted that Troels Forchhammer write an essay discussing the ages of the Weasley children. I've had this essay on hold since then because I didn't have time to do the editing and formatting. I just finally finished that project as well, and you can read his excellent analysis here.

I've been updating the Which Wizard pages lately, adding some of the missing names from Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them. I have quite a list of things from those two books which slipped through the cracks and I'm adding them this weekend ("albino bloodhounds" anyone?) I'm also working through additions from chapters 11-13 of Order of the Phoenix

In other words, along with the essays, you can find tidbits of new information all through the Lexicon. Yeehaw!

April 13, 2004
I just spent a week in Cocoa Beach, Florida, at a delightful hotel called the Luna Sea. I did a lot of reading by the pool and had a ball at Islands of Adventure in Orlando. I also did some work on the Lexicon. 

I have reworked the timelines entirely, adding all the rest of the information from Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts. I also added a lot of notes and comments which should be helpful. Probably the biggest change is that I've now listed some of the dates in two forms: the official timeline year, which figures Harry's birth year as 1980, and the relative date, which figures Harry's birth year as Y0 and lists every other book date as an offset of that year (for example, Harry starts Hogwarts in Y11). This is intended to make it clear when dates are given specifically in canon and when they are listed relative to the story, such as when the Chamber of Secrets is mentioned as being opened "fifty years ago." 

We're still left with the mystery of the ages of Bill and Charlie. Rowling's "off the top of her head" comment in the WBD chat has left us with a puzzle. Fortunately, Troels Forchhammer has tackled this question in an extremely well-researched essay. I am currently working on editing it for publication and you can plan to see it very soon.

March 12, 2004
I've just added an essay by Troels Forchhammer called Mapping the Harry Potter Timeline. Troels is meticulous in his analysis of the various clues and theories which have been debated back and forth for the past few years by fans. He includes all known references from all the books and presents them for you to consider and draw your own conclusions. I'm very excited to have this essay included in the Lexicon and I'm hoping that he will be able to contribute more often to the site.

March 4, 2004
Michele here. Steve and I are updating the Lexicon simultaneously this evening, thanks to JKR's web chat earlier today. Please be patient, we're scrambling to integrate a gold mine of new information here. :)

February 29, 2004
Michele here. (If anybody out there hexed Steve with his current connectivity issues, quit it, OK?) A new essay from Morag Traynor has just been made available. Enjoy. 

February 28, 2004
Michele here, the Lexicon's assistant/junior editor. The Wizards' List is undergoing a scrubbing today. Hooked up another essay to the essay index that was missed on the first pass, about the Longbottoms

February 26, 2004
Michele here, the Lexicon's assistant/junior editor. The chapter guide for CS1 has been updated; go to theHelp/About page, to the section "Delving Deeper into Harry Potter". An essay on duelling which has been awaiting review has also been made available.

February 25, 2004
Michele here, the Lexicon's assistant/junior editor. Dreamweaver has been re-installed successfully on Steve's personal machine after an unfortunate episode with a repair shop and an erased hard drive (didn't affect the Lexicon's existing content, I hasten to add, just delayed Steve in producing some new stuff he's been working on). However, he's been very busy just lately in real life apart from his Dreamweaver issues, so I thought I'd chime in again to let people know what's going on.

Apart from the ongoing general cleanup mentioned last time, wizarding transportation has been updated, and among other things now mentions thestrals more explicitly. (Several people inquired about that.) A new Reader's Guide page has been added for one of the chapters of PA; go to the Help/About page, to the section "Delving Deeper into Harry Potter".

Finally, with some trepidation, I will own up to having a new livejournal over at livejournal.com, as hp_lexicon_jr. (Steve himself is hp_lexicon over there, but he's waiting to see how my experiment with livejournal works out before doing much with his own.) It's embarrassingly plain just now, but I want to see how having it works out content-wise before attempting to make it more sophisticated. The primary restriction I've got on it just now (if I'm not completely clueless about the settings) is that its message boards won't accept anonymous postings; see its first entry about how I'd like to run it in a fairly open mode otherwise, and how I hope it'll turn out to be a somewhat helpful tool in future.

So if anyone pops up on a livejournal.com message board and begins talking about essays or whatnot, you'll be able to tell if it's either of us. 

February 13, 2004
Michele here, the Lexicon's assistant/junior editor. As regular visitors may be aware, ordinarily Steve alone touches this particular page. However, in the spirit of Friday the 13th, Steve's been having some ugly problems with his personal machine, so I thought I'd pipe up to let everyone know a little about what's going on.

Apart from ongoing general cleanup all over (broken links, making images more vision-impaired friendly, a gradual process in both cases), the Bestiary and Strictly British have undergone some minor updates. For those who asked, one way to reach the Essay Index is to go to the Help/About page. Finally, a few new Reader's Guide pages have been added for various books (SS, CS, OP); again, go to the Help/About page, to the section "Delving Deeper into Harry Potter".

January 26, 2004
Added a new page for Luna Lovegood, which includes another of Marta T.'s brilliant drawings and artwork by a new artist to the Lexicon, Tiny Q. Her illustration of Luna is just beautiful, really capturing the quirky nature of this intriguing character. I am delighted to welcome Tiny Q. to the Lexicon. Look for more of her work on other pages soon.

January 25, 2004
The reorganization is going very smoothly, thanks to Dreamweaver. What an excellent program that is!

I have added a page to the Hogwarts Atlas which shows a stunning painting by Michael Bramman, a well-known British illustrator. The page includes a brief note from the artist about how he went about creating his "owl's eye view" of Hogwarts and its environs. He has given the Lexicon permission to display his work, for which I am very grateful indeed! 

January 14, 2004
For the last few days, I've been reorganizing the thousands of files which make up the Lexicon. This is a painstaking process, at least for me, since I'm not a Dreamweaver wiz by any stretch of the imagination. I do things like this in utter terror of messing up the links on a whole bunch of pages. So why do it? Well, just because there ARE thousands of files and it's getting more and more difficult to keep track of what goes with what. Editing the Lexicon will be much easier with things organized. I know that Michele just rolls her eyes when she see how disorganized the site really is. The kicker, of course, is that organizing the pages makes me look like less of a total putz to all the Big Time Webmasters out there who drop by.

The reason I bring this up is that I'd appreciate a heads up from anyone of you who might discover a page with messed up links. I've tried to make sure that Dreamweaver updates and synchronizes every single file, but I can't quite believe that there isn't a single lost link in this whole process. So if you happen to spot any pages with problems, would you mind just dropping me a line? Thanks.

January 10, 2004
This isn't strictly a Lexicon thing, but since it's my project, I'll let you all know anyway. The Lexicon is part of a group of sites called The Floo Network. This group includes The Leaky Cauldron, Quick Quotes Quill, and The Hogwarts Galleries (which is currently in pre-production, you might say). That's why you see the Floo Network navigation bar at the top of every Lexicon page. The idea all along has been for there to be a main Floo Network page which folks could bookmark or make into their home page so they can quickly and easily get to all the best Potter sites in the world (by which we mean TLC, Lexicon, QQQ, and HG, of course). But over the last year, the whole Floo Network main page idea has really not gone anywhere.

All that has changed. In the spirit of the old Hogwarts Journal which used to be part of the Lexicon a couple of years ago, I have created a brand spankin' new Floo Network page. This page will be updated more or less on a weekly basis with trivia, moments in history, and other odds and ends which Harry Potter fans will enjoy. It also provides a nice and easy way to jump to the other sites of the Floo Network. So check it out and let me know what you think. If you have tidbits of information that you think might fit on a page like that, by all means send them my way. I'd be interested in cartoons, recipes, interesting bits of information about the books or films, photos, humor, trivia, or just about anything else. Please don't copy stuff from other people's sites, however. When you email me, put "Floo Page" in the subject so I can keep a nice file of them for future page updates.

January 7, 2004
First of all, thanks to all of you who emailed me to find out why there haven't been many updates lately. Sorry about the lull, folks, but that happens during the school year. I'm a teacher and librarian, plus the resident director for a theatre company, so I get awfully busy sometimes. Michele is in school and doesn't have any time at all for the Lexicon right now, so there just isn't a lot going on.

Okay, that's not entirely true. Since November 22, a total of fifty-five pages have been edited. Those edits range from adding a lovely new Ministry of Magic logo to each of the Ministry of Magic pages (and you really should check it out, because it's really cool, if I may say so myself) to additional spells. I've edited a number of pages with new information from OP--things like adding a comment about Umbridge's wand to that page and so on. Most of these edits haven't been all that spectacular, so I didn't bother making a note here.

There is a new essay, however, and I was going to wait until I got a few more pages done, but I don't know if I'll get them finished within the next few days, so I'll just announce it now. It's an excellent piece about the Battle of the Department of Mysteries. Kendall Smiley has analyzed the whole battle from beginning to end and made some clever deductions about what exactly was happening when. I've added some more artwork by Marta T. which is absolutely beautiful, as usual. Tonight my part of the US was under a blizzard warning and then a winter storm warning, so I'm hoping for a snow day tomorrow. That might give me the chance I need to finish the other pages I've been working on to go along with Kendall's essay. In the meantime, I'll make his piece live, since it's really excellent and deserves to be read and enjoyed by everyone.