W.O.M.B.A.T stands for Wizards' Ordinary Magic and Basic Aptitude Test. It's administered by the Wizarding Examinations Authority. The head of this Authority is Griselda Marchbanks, CDMG, APMD, fbBB.
This test consisted of questions which require an extensive knowledge of canon and an intuitive understanding of the wizarding world to answer. Most of the questions require educated guesses, since we don't have sufficient information to answer them definitively.
The test is reproduced below with commentary by Steve Vander Ark, Lisa Waite Bunker, and Belinda Hobbs. The purpose of this commentary is to help those who want to be reminded of handy canon details or who want to consider some of the implications of what we do or don't know. The commentary is not intended to give specific answers in most cases, but rather to provide support information so that the test taker can formulate their answers most effectively. Remember, in many cases, there is no way for us Muggles to know the exact correct answer, so feel free to make your best guess.
See the WOMBAT tests -Results page for how the Results appeared.
Which of the following statements is TRUE?
a. Hags eat small children
b. Inferi cannot speak
c. Goblins fear sunlight
d. There are no female centaurs
e. Vampire bites are curable nowadays
Since we need to choose one to be true, we can pretty much safely go with (a). I wish all the questions were this straightforward. However, from this question we can infer that Inferi can speak, that Goblins do not fear sunlight, that there are female centaurs, and that vampire bites are incurable. Love finding out new canon, even if it's tiny little tidbits like this.
I went differently on this one. I think all of these are plausible because we don't know enough about any of them, which might be what Jo wants us to be thinking about here. I know that the Hag cards, and the Daily Prophet article imply that Hags do eat children, but I also have a feeling that this might just be a reputation and not true for all hags inherently. So I went for (b), mostly because I want it to be true! Inferi are too scary and creepy, I hope they can't talk.
Gah! Three of these are true, to the best of our knowledge. I went with (a) because it is firmly in canon and the others are just as-far-as-we-know kind of statements.
a) True; documented on the Famous Wizard Cards b) True, at least in Book 6 c) False; there is one standing outside the doors to Gringotts d) True? In traditional mythology mention of female centaurs is very rare, and all centaurs in the books so far are male. e) Not in book 6 at least. Sounds like something Luna would say.
Which of the following statements is FALSE?
a. Ghosts can cause movement of both liquid and gas
b. Freshwater merpeople are less warlike than salt
c. The werewolf's snout is shorter than that of the true wolf
d. There are no male Veela
e. Hags have four toes on each foot
Erm, why do I not care about this one?
We have seen Myrtle affect water, so we know that's true. I'm trying to think of a specific incident where a ghost affects the air, which is a gas, and the only thing I can come up with is the feeling of "walking through a cold shower" a person has when they walk through a ghost. We have no information about the behavior of merpeople except that they all seem rather menacing. The snout of a werewolf is definitely different from that of a true wolf, but we are never told exactly what that difference is. In the Pensieve, Harry sees Pettigrew give these marks of someone being a werewolf:
'I got the snout shape, the pupils of the eyes and the tufted tail,' he said anxiously, 'but I couldn't think what else -'
Hermione tries to explain to Snape how a werewolf differs from a true wolf, but only manages to start saying "The snout--" before she's interrupted and told to be quiet. We don't know anything about the Veela or the feet of hags, so we have to guess on that one. I ended up choosing b, but it was a total guess. By the way, Lisa, how can you not care about things like Veela? Veela are cool. Well, until they get those wings and throw fire. That's kind of freaky.Belinda:
Steve. Steve? Oh Steve!! Never mind the Veela! We've got commentary to finish here! Eesh. Male veela? can't imagine it. I went through the same thought process that Steve did on this one and decided that I'm truly a muggle and have no clue. So I chose (d), just because it seemed odd.
I wanted to say Dementors immediately, but I wondered if the Ministry would agree, since until fairly recently they employed Dementors as guards for Azkaban. Still, the effects of a Dementor attack are horrible beyond physical damage. Yeah, I'm going to say Dementors.
My first thought was Dementors too, for the same reasons Steve stated. But then I thought that the Ministry might not consider them all that dangerous and that they are easily controlled. I would expect the Ministry, in their arrogance, to think their properly trained wizards have them managed and not a threat, much like dragons. So? dangerous, hmm... since Hags, Vampires and Werewolves are intermingled among the wizarding community and occasionally seen, I went with Inferi again. Yes, I think I'm really afraid of them!
a) My vote goes for the Dementors. Their very presence destroys happiness; their kiss robs you of your soul. Plus, Remus says so!
Some notes: Damage from Dementor's Kiss described as "a wizard lying huddled and blank-eyed, slumped against a wall" (HBP9) A living death, certainly, but MOM rating unknown. b) MOM rating unknown, certainly a danger to children. c) MOM rating unknown but can reduce a human being to a "a bloody mass upon ground." (HBP9) d) MOM rating XXXXX (FB), but Sanguini seems pretty tame (HBP15). e) Controllable with Wolfsbane Potion.
Jo told us on her website that Peeves is not like a ghost, that he was never a living person. So I went straight for Poltergeists. Besides, I hope that all the others can be done-in somehow, especially Dementors.
We know Dementors "breed" so they can probably be killed. I agree with Bel.
Ghosts and Inferi are the remains of dead wizards, so those obviously can't be considered amortal. Vampires are living beings, probably a form of infected wizard, so they would have a normal life cycle aside from their affliction. Dementors breed, as Lisa said, so they apparently have a life cycle as well. The Patronus dispels them...can they be destroyed somehow? I would have to go with Poltergeists. They're not really beings, more embodied forces of chaos.
5. Which (still unresolved) issue do most historians believe triggered the infamous goblin rebellion of 1612?
a. Lack of goblin representation on the Wizengamot?
b. Wizard attempts to enslave goblins and use as house-elves?
c. Wizard refusal to grant goblins the right to carry a wand?
d. Attempt of wizards to regain control of Gringotts bank?
e. Series of brutal goblin-slayings by wizard murderer Yardley Platt
I suggested on WOMBAT grade 1 that the Goblin's restriction against having wands might be important! I still believe it is, and here we have an entire question devoted to them.
Wow, I felt like Ron on this one. a) is unlikely -- I think Scamander would have mentioned it in his essay "What is a Beast?" where he addresses the issue of their status. c) Is quite plausible. e) The time period for Yardley Platt matches, so I went with him.
I think there is a lot to goblins that we don't know. The whole issue of wand-carrying was a huge deal in the Daily Prophet front page story about the Goblin riots in Chipping Sodbury (DP). I went with that, although Lisa, I do like the idea of Yardley's exploits having a bit more back story to them.
I just noticed the question says the issue is "(still unresolved)," so it can't be Platt. Oh no, I'm getting a troll on this one!
6. Which of the following statements on giants is TRUE?
a. Giant clans are matriarchal (females in charge)
b. Female giants are usually larger than males
c. Giants' eyesight is very poor compared with that of humans
d. Giants are nocturnal
e. Many giants are cannibals
Another shot in the dark, really. Since Karkus, the Gurg when Hagrid visited, was a male, the first choice is false. We don't know much about sizes by gender or about their eyesight. We do know that they slept at night, so they aren't nocturnal. I ended up going with (e), but I'm not sure at all. Although we see giants rip each other to bits, we never see them eat the remains. Oh well, it was a guess.
I agree with Steve, as far as we know. But I waffled between answers (b) and (c) because (e) is just too disgusting. Is it possibly Trolls that have poor eyesight not Giants?
I don't think any of these are true! Canon contradicts (a) (c) (d), whereas (b) and (e) are not mentioned anywhere. I went with (e) because it seems like something a brutal population that is destroying itself might do. What Steve said.
7. Which of the following statements on house-elves is FALSE?
a. House-elves have an average life-expectancy of 200 years
b. A house-elf's allegiance is foremost to its house (rather than to the inhabitants of the house)
c. House-elves cannot be ordered to kill themselves
d. House-elf magic is sufficiently powerful to override wizards' enchantments
e. House-elves breed infrequently and then only with their masters' permission
We know more about house-elves than we do about giants and goblins. Even so, I felt like I was just guessing here. However, I could narrow it down somewhat. It seems unlikely that a house-elf lives hundreds of years. The whole elf head on the wall thing in Grimmauld Place suggests several generations of elves living and dying during the 150 years of family Black. As for the allegiance to the house, here's what George says about it in CS3:
"House-elves come with big old manors and castles and places like that; you wouldn't catch one in our house . . . "
He seems to be saying that the elves are connected to the house, not the people in it. We don't know if a house-elf can be ordered to commit suicide, but they can and are commanded to punish themselves. Since Dobby's magic overcame a number of powerful magical enchantments, we know that (d) is true. We know nothing about their breeding habits, but (e) sounds very likely to be true. I went with (a).
These are all questions I've wondered about House-elves and hope we find out more about them. I chose (b) because I we know that a master can take House-elves with them on outings and I suspected they would remain in their service if they moved house. Also the fact that they are loyal to the family members and inherited made me think the tie was to the people. But now I'm not so sure.
I had a hard time with this one. Kreacher *seems* like he'd be 200 years old, but we don't really know. (b) and (d) are the most interesting canon-wise. When Harry commands Kreacher ("Will and Won't;" HBP3) it seems like the owner's commands are overriding what the "house" would command (it would want to go to Bellatrix, right?) -- and Harry owns Kreacher because of a legal document and not close blood relationship to the Blacks. Or did Harry inherit the "house" in a more metaphorical way? My brain hurts. I went with (b) anyway.
RESOURCES FOR THIS SECTION:
MoM-Rules and Regulations
8. In a recent Ministry of Magic poll, what was identified as the issue most concerning the wizarding community at the present time?
a. Insufficient information given by the Ministry of Magic regarding the return of Lord Voldemort
b. Insufficient action taken by the Ministry of Magic to fight Lord Voldemort
c. Inadequate Ministry of Magic resources devoted to the protection of the wizarding community
d. Over-reaction of Ministry of Magic to the return of Lord Voldemort, which is the best thing that has happened to the wizarding community in many years
Not (d) of course. My sense is that it would have been (a) right after the end of OP when the Voldemort was first revealed, but quickly turned to more concern about protection. That pamphlet was a joke, after all. I'm going with (c) with (b) a close second.
Have you seen this poll? I went looking for it and can't find it anywhere. I went with (b) because it could be what Scrimgeour is reacting to when he tries to recruit Harry. But (a) and (c) are also quite plausible.
Lisa, I think we have to pass these WOMBAT exams before the ministry will let us see the poll. Judging from the magical community's faith in the Daily Prophet, I doubted (a) that they feel uninformed. I went with (b) thinking that the return of You-know-who is probably foremost in everyone's mind at the present time, and more needs to be done.
9. According to a recent article in the Daily
Prophet, which subject at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry has been complained about by parents more than any other (over 100 year period)?
a. Care of Magical Creatures
b. Defence Against the Dark Arts
c. History of Magic
d. Muggle Studies
This is over the past 100 years, so I don't think of a particular teacher so much as the climate of the school itself. Over all those years, the most unstable seems to me to be Defense Against the Dark Arts, especially over the past 40 years or so since the job was jinxed. I mean, let's face it, if you have a new teacher in that post for all those years, how can there be any consistency of teaching or even good control over a curriculum? On the other hand, we could be looking at the general prejudice in the Wizarding World against Muggles and a general air of discontent that Muggle Studies is even included in the curriculum. Maybe. But I'm sticking with DADA.
Books 4 and 5 document parental complaints. In book 4 there is Rita Skeeter's smear article against Hagrid, and parental complaints against Hogwarts in general are implied in another DP article, the one announcing Umbridge's appointment as Inquisitor (OP15). The Umbridge article is the most recent so I went with b), the DaDA position. But I think (a) is also plausible. Poor Hagrid!
I wonder if this question is more about the Daily Prophet's reporting, or the public's perception of Hogwarts, or what magical parents want for their children? As a teacher librarian, and this being Banned Books Week, I know that the number of complaints does not always indicate a real problem. It depends on what students are telling their parents too. Defense Against the Dark Arts seems like it might draw attention because of the subject matter, and the turn around of teachers, but would parents complain? I decided that Care of Magical Creatures is more likely to prompt exaggerated stories to parents. We have seen that the Daily Prophet has recently sensationalized some of these, and would pull out statistics from the past 100 years to make a story. I went with (a).
10. What percentage of wizards and witches believe that Weather-Modifying Charms should be regulated due to their effect upon the environment? (Figures collected by the Committee for Experimental Charms)
There is absolutely no way we can know this, is there. Well, mabye...what level of environmental awareness do we see in the Wizarding World? Not much, actually. They certainly don't mind killing animals for various experiments and tests. In fact, I would guess that the Wizarding World doesn't have any greater sense of environmental stewardship than the Muggles. So what percentage of Muggles would be willing to accept some regulation to protect the environment? I would love to say that it's 93%...but I expect that it isn't. As for the questions, I'm going with 53% and hoping I'm too low.
That they "should" be regulated? Does this mean that there are no regulations now? Or that the regulations are unnecessary? Since there seems to be a fair amount of strict regulations in the Wizarding World and for the most part, are accepted, I think we're guessing at the magical community's concern for the environment rather than their resistance to government control. Like Steve, I think it's probably the same as muggle attitudes, low to middling, so I chose the middle (c) 53%.
Gosh, I just guessed and went on to questions I could sink my teeth into. I guessed slightly over half (53%).
Oh, you're such a copycat, Lisa.
11. Which health scare at St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries has recently caused widespread panic? (Source: St. Mungo's Admissions Department)
a. Suspected brain damage due to the Imperius Curse
b. Suspected death due to Thestral sightings
c. Spate of suspected werewolf bites
d. Uncontrollable bleeding due to 'Nosebleed Nougat'
Because it said "recently," I immediately tied the question to Voldemort's return. That led me to suspect either werewolf bites or Imperius Curse. My guess is that Fenrir's activities would cause more panic, so I went with (c).
Since this is current events I went with c). Greyback needs to be stopped!
Lisa, are you copying me again?
I said (c) too. But I'm not copying Steve. No, I'm not. Am not.
12. What change would 18% of wizards like to see to the requirements for membership of the Wizengamot? (source: Ministry of Magic poll)
a. Average age lowered from 87
b. Proof of pure-blood status
c. Maximum of three years in post
d. Goblin representation
18% would seem to indicate a strong fringe movement, so I went with b) Proof of pure-blood status.
Let me see...only 18%, so not many. I figure that fits with the number of pure-blood fanatics like the Malfoys, so I'm going with (b), just like you, Lisa, and don't you dare say anything about my being a copycat.
I'm curious about the age 87 thing, though. I wonder if the Wizengamot is
all supposed to be portrayed as old? They aren't shown that way in the film,
certainly. A glance through the timeline also shows that very few of the witches
or wizards on there lived to be that old.
RESOURCES FOR THIS SECTION:
Magical Items and Devices
13. Assuming that you already have a wand, which THREE of the following would you consider indispensable in case of trouble?
a. Anti-Muggle doorknob
d. Crystal ball
e. Extendable Ear
f. Floo powder
h. Hand of Glory
i. Invisibility Cloak
n. Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder
o. Potion-making kit
p. Quick-Quotes Quill
t. Secrecy Sensor
x. Two-way mirror
y. Wizard's wireless
What? no Z?! I almost missed the bottom half of this list because I didn't notice the scroll. Beware!
Are some of these even legal? I can't believe that the average wizard even knows about things like Time Turners or Extendable Ears. Okay, let's go through the list:
a. Anti-Muggle doorknob - Nope: no big deal, in my opinion, and hey, wouldn't this mean you'd have to have a door too?
b. Broomstick - Yes: this is one I voted for, for making a fast getaway.
c. Cauldron - No: handy for hitting Erklings over the head and for carrying large quantities of books, but let's face it, if you're in danger you're not going to have time to brew a potion
d. Crystal ball - No: from what we can tell in the books, this one would be practically useless to most people. Well, okay, you can throw it at someone in a pinch, but that's about it.
e. Extendable Ear - No: but how did the testmakers even learn about this one? Have Fred and George's inventions become so well known in just over a year? If you're in trouble, you probably don't need to eavesdrop, you need to run like crazy toward safety. Or fly (see broomstick).
f. Floo powder - Could be, but you would need a fireplace that's hooked up to the Floo Network, and when you're in dire straights, I doubt that you can count on such a thing being handy. There are better choices.
g. Foe-Glass - No: Not reliable, really, and although useful, not the best choice.
h. Hand of Glory - Not really: Okay, it's really cool, but how often do you find yourself in the kind of situation where this would be needed? Something more multipurpose would be better.
i. Invisibility Cloak - Yes! Now we're talking. I can't think of anything which could be more useful in a myriad of situations. It's almost like having your towel
j. Lunascope - Uh, no. Whatever for? Maybe sell it and buy something more useful, like a broomstick.
k. Omnioculars - Slight chance, but probably not. They're cool, yes, but there are other things which are much more important and useful.
l. Parchment - For writing a good-bye note? "Dear Mum, Sorry I was too stupid to bring something more useful, but I'm about to be eaten by an Acromantula and all I've got is this bit of parchment. Hope this finds you well, your soon-to-be-late son, Steve."
m. Pensieve - Not really. Oh, it would be cool to have, of course, but when it comes to times of trouble, I think there are better options than a Pensieve. Wait, it's made of stone, right? So you could whack someone on the head with it. But aside from that, not so much.
n. Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder - Possibly, since this is seriously cool. But not as cool as an invisibility cloak, so I'd choose that instead.
o. Potion-making kit - Actually, yes. Useful in many different situations and fairly compact and easy to carry. Just make sure it's got a bezoar in it.
p. Quick-Quotes Quill - I don't suppose this means the website, does it. This is another one that I doubt most wizards would recognize. And I don't expect that it will be of much use in a pinch.
q. Remembrall - Not likely. Pretty worthless when in danger as well. Although, if you have a Remembrall and a Crystal Ball, you could use a Permanent Sticking Charm to attach a length of chain between them and have a rather nifty weapon. Until they shatter with the first hit. Okay, forget it.
r. Revealer - Yeah, you bet, so you can rub out your opponent. Get it?
s. Scales - Nope. Can't even imagine a good use for these, except to hit with them, and I've pretty much used up the "hitting people with things" jokes on here.
t. Secrecy Sensor - No. See Foe Glass.
u. Sneakoscope - Maybe, although I think you can "see Foe Glass" on this one too.
v. Telescope - Only if it's one of Fred and George's, so it will fight. Of course, since the little fists are just tiny, this will only be useful against, oh, House-Elves maybe. If you can get them to look into the telescope. And squeeze it.
w. Time-Turner - Yes, this could be VERY helpful! Illegal, I presume, and according to Hermione, very very dangerous, but what the heck, I'll take one. Nothing confuses a Death Eater like going back in time and doing stuff twice. Heck, that even confused me in the book.
x. Two-way mirror - Maybe, if we only knew what it did. Why did Harry forget all about this, anyway? I have to admit that I'd forgotten it too until he pulled it out of that package. So what would it have done?
y. Wizard's wireless - Yes, definitely. When about to be savaged by a Cockatrice, you can switch the Wireless on and let the beast get an earful of "A Cauldron Full Of Hot Strong Love." That'll shift it.
You're never going to pass this test if you think like a muggle! All you can think of is hitting?? Weapons? What about staying informed? Or communicating with others?
I mean besides your mom.
After you're dead.
I took a little broader approach to what "in case of trouble" meant, and some items are useful in certain situations, but what would be Indispensable?
With this number of options, I'm sure there can't be just three perfect answers, and I suspect each one rates a certain score. So as I read the list I rated each one as Practically Useless, Useful only for specific things, Very useful, or Indispensable.
I also figured that for an item to be indispensable, it must be a common enough object that I'd own one. I mean, how many people would actually have a Secrecy Sensor, Time-Turner or Invisibility Cloak? and if I had all of these items, their indispensability would depend on the type of trouble.
In the end I narrowed my choices to items that would help me get away, stay informed, or get help. So I went with (b) broomstick, (f) floo powder, and (o) potions-making kit; with (y) being not so dumb, methinks.
Invisibility Cloak, and a Time-Turner seemed obvious to me, but what for the third? Pensieve? Extendable Ears? Two-way mirror? I went with Extendable Ears, but I wish I had picked the mirror. I think hearing what someone is planning would be a useful thing, and the two-way mirror would be cool if someone like Lupin had the other one. Calm, knowledgeable advice is a good thing.
RESOURCES FOR THIS SECTION:
Essay: Magic, Genes, and Pure Blood
14. Which of the following is the ONLY magical invention whose effect has not yet been duplicated FULLY by Muggle ingenuity?
a. Flying broomstick
b. Mrs. Skower's All-Purpose Magical Mess Remover
e. Self-ironing robes
I went with "reparo" because it goes beyond what we Muggles can do with glue or duct tape.
Interesting question. I think you might be right, Lisa, but I am leaning toward the broomstick. Yes, we can fly in an airplane or helicopter, but that is quite a different than a single person flying on a broom.
Yup, I chose (d) also. We just can't completely reverse damage, no matter how much we wish we could.
Fully? Fully? You mean there's a wizarding device where one is shoehorned into a tube with tired, crying children and everyone catches someone's cold? I found this question confusing because it isn't clear if the duplication was 1:1; that is, if it could be one wizarding object or if it could be several that duplicate the effect.
I agree, Lisa, it's tough to figure out just what this question is asking. I figure that the only one I couldn't figure out a wizarding equivalent for is the computer. But then, we haven't seen anything like television yet, have we? Radio yes, and Floo talking through the fire is sort of like the telephone.
16. The following beliefs are all widely held in the wizarding world, but only ONE is actually TRUE. (According to the latest research from the Institute of Muggle Studies) Which is it?
a. Muggle-born witches/wizards are more likely to produce Squib children than those who have one or more wizarding parents.
b. Muggle-born witches/wizards usually have a witch or wizard ancestor somewhere in their family tree, though s/he may be generations back.
c. Muggle-born witches/wizards are generally less prone to certain magical illnesses than those who have one or more wizarding parent.
d. Muggle-born witches/wizards are generally slower to show signs of magic in childhood than those who have one or more wizarding parent.
e. Muggle-born witches/wizards have great natural rhythm.
Although magic is obviously an inherited trait because there are Wizarding families, I'm not sure it's actually genetic. So whether muggle-borns are more or less prone to magical illnesses, producing magical children or teehee, having great natural rhythm, I doubt it! I also doubt that they'd be slower to show magic.
So I chose (b) because I'm pretty sure that some of my ancestors were witches and wizards. Oh yes, at least one. Sometime. Someone. Ok, maybe they were just weird, but who knows for sure?
I chose (c) because it made sense, but I wanted to chose (e) because it made me laugh. Jo said in a 1999 interview that no one knows where magic comes from.
Oh, I wanted to pick (e) too. We don't have any information at all to make a decision on this one, so I had to use all my cleverness and ingenuity to pick the correct answer. Lisa says that (c) makes sense, so I decided not to go with that one and choose one of the others at random. I ended up with (b) by closing my eyes and poking at the screen with my finger.
17. Which of the following statements is FALSE?
(According to the latest research from the Institute of Muggle Studies)
a. It is possible for a Muggle to produce elementary magic if they have access to a wand and a book of spells
b. It is possible for a Muggle to inadvertently stumble upon magically protected areas such as Diagon Alley and St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries
c. It is possible for a Muggle to see and correctly identify magical creatures
d. It is possible for a Muggle to see and yet deny the existence of magical creatures, even without magical intervention
e. It is possible for a Muggle to believe in impossibilities
No matter how much I wish it were true, I'm sure (a) is false. Muggles can't work magic. Magical accidents maybe, if they fell upon the wrong enchanted object, but nope, no elementary magic.
I think it is (a) no question, based upon what she said about potions at the recent "Harry, Carrie and Garp" reading.
I was at the recent "Harry, Carrie and Garp" reading, so I am a little irked that you mentioned it in your comments before I could, Lisa, but okay fine. Yes, I agree that it's (a).
Many of these are true, actually. Muggles are ignorant of many things, and they are in danger. They are insensitive to their surroundings in that they completely miss magic under their noses. They are interesting to most wizards, and yes, they can be irritating. The only one that I would say is right out would be (c). I went with (e) because I just liked that answer.
Well, really! It depends on who you talk to! Mr. Weasley, Lucius Malfoy and Dumbledore would all give different answers. Except for (b). They would all agree on (b), and so do I.
I hope that the Ministry would not actually condone insulting muggles. So I chose (e). Did I pass? Can I join the Wizarding World? Please?
See the WOMBAT tests -Results page to learn about the scoring.