One of the things that readers fall in love with about the books is the depth of information we are given – information that is often only peripheral to the plot, but nevertheless enriches our understanding of the magical world. Some of the more interesting tidbits pertain to the history of this world, the nooks and crannies of which we will explore in depth below.
The History of the History of the Wizarding World by Steve VanderArk
The changing Quidditch World Cup schedule by Nick Moline
Here are Reader’s Guides of chapters that include a healthy dose of wizarding history.
History of the Wizarding World
Before 100 A.D., Ancient Egypt and Greece
100-1400 A.D., The Medieval Era
1400-1692, Growing Distrust and Prejudice
1692-1881, The Wizarding World in Secret
1881-1945, The Rise and Fall of Grindelwald
1945-1960, Calm Between Wars
1960-1981, The Marauders and the First Rise of Voldemort
1981-1990, Voldemort in Hiding
1990-1998, The Second Rise and Defeat of Voldemort
1998-2017, The Post-War Years
2017-2025, The Next Generation
Canon Sources for Wizarding World History
Timeline Facts and Questions by Steve VanderArk
Mapping the Harry Potter Timeline by Troels Forchhammer
Troubles with Time by Steve VanderArk
History of the Ministry by Steve VanderArk
Generations in the Wizarding World by Ebony AKA AngieJ
Wizards and World War I by William Silvester
The Early Life of Tom Riddle and the Second World War by Faisal M. Ahmad
When were Frank and Alice Longbottom attacked? by Rosie Payne
What Really Happened on the Night James and Lily Were Killed? by Steve VanderArk
Quirrell’s Leave of Absence by Melissa Erin Friedline
Most of the artwork we have in our collection depicts the events in the Harry Potter novels. But there are a few pieces which illustrate more unusual moments in wizarding history. Here are a few examples:
Our Artwork Challenge for all you fan artists out there is to bring to life historical events, places and figures, such as the following:
- anyone on the Famous Wizard cards
- the Goblin Rebellions of 1612 and 1752
- Sir Cadogan battling the Wyvern of Wye
- Headless Hunts
- the Chimaera versus “the heroic wizard”
- the Modesty Rabnott Snidget Reservation
- the All-England Wizarding Duelling Competition of 1430
- Isolt Sayre sailing to America on the Mayflower
- Muggle rulers William and Mary receiving the Ministry of Magic delegation
- the 1749 breach of the Statute of Secrecy
- explosions rocking the Muggle Colosseum during a 1754 broom race
- the MACUSA engaging in its “Country or Kind” debate
- a Ukrainian Ironbelly dragon carrying off a Muggle sailing ship
- the Great Sasquatch Rebellion of 1892
If we really like your work, we may feature it in the Lexicon! Send your artwork to [email protected]. By submitting it, you are giving us permission to display your work on the Lexicon. We would like to include your name with your artwork so you are properly credited, so when you send your work let us know what name to use. Please also include a way to get a hold of you so that if we decide to feature your work as part of our regular collection we can contact you for more details. All artwork we display remains the property of the artist and they retain all copyright.
Special Section: When It All Falls Together
Goblin rebellions took place in the mid-1600s and 1700s. All the bits of information in various sources fit together to tell a compelling story.
Three Broomsticks as HQ
“In ‘Sites of Historical Sorcery’ it says the inn was the headquarters for the 1612 goblin rebellion”
— Hermione about the wizarding village of Hogsmeade (PA5)
Somehow, in plain sight, the goblins are able to conspire and run their rebellions inside a pub also frequented by wizards.
N.B. It isn’t entirely clear, however, whether the book is talking about the Three Broomsticks or the Hog’s Head – they are both referred to as an “inn” in the novels, Hermione doesn’t specify and, sadly, we don’t have the above referenced book to check. Goblins probably drink in both taverns, but the Hog’s Head has the more dodgy reputation of the two. And, of course, Hagrid bought a three-headed dog from one of the “funny folk” who drink there (PS16), the pub was used for the illegal first meeting of Dumbledore’s Army (OP16), it was a meeting place for Voldemort’s followers (HBP20) and the owner helped students trapped in the school when Hogwarts was under Death Eater control (DH29) – so its history as a place used for dubious purposes continued. But, perhaps the Three Broomsticks was a less salubrious venue in the 17th and 18th centuries than it is in modern times.
Ministers for Magic fail and are replaced
Finally, Hesphaestus Gore became Minister for Magic that same year. He was an Auror, and using his enforcement experience to quash the goblin rebellions was successful – although there is some about his legacy (MoM, PmP).
Goblin ringleader dies a few years later
From one of the W.O.M.B.A.T. tests on J K Rowling’s original website we learn that in 1762 the goblin rebel leader Vargot was killed in battle. After his death, with Minister Gore firmly in charge, it seems that the goblin rebellions died down (JKR-W3).
Goblin rights, however, are still disputed within the wizarding world and wish for possession of a wand by goblins is still a very sore bone of contention. Riots organised by the Brotherhood of Goblins (B.O.G.) take place in the 1990s (DP3).
Famous Witches and Wizards in History
Merwyn the Malicious, jinx and hex inventor
Ignatia Wildsmith, Floo powder specialist
Cyprian Youdle, an unftunate Quidditch referee
Yardley Platt is not a fan of goblins
Elladora Ketteridge and Gillyweed
Jocunda Sykes and her long-distance broom travel first
Coming up next week…
Next week, we look at the first ten chapters of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, a book with the excitement of a world-class Quidditch match and a dangerous school tournament.