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Wizard with distant Goblin ancestry
Hogwarts Ravenclaw

Filius Flitwick

"Umbridge just lurked in the corner making notes on a clipboard. You know what Flitwick's like, he treated her like a guest, didn't seem to bother him at all."
--Fred to Harry and Hermione (OP15)

Filius Flitwick

Filius Flitwick is the Charms professor at Hogwarts and the Head of Ravenclaw House. He is very small in stature (he needs to stand on a pile of books to see over his desk), but not small in magical ability. He was an accomplished wizard and, according to rumor, was a dueling champion when he was younger (CS11). Flitwick seems to have a gentle spirit and can be an emotional fellow. When Ginny Weasley is taken into the Chamber of Secrets, he bursts into tears. His office was on seventh floor, near the base of the West Tower (PA). Flitwick had taught students how to “swish and flick” at Hogwarts since at least the 1970s and was well-respected by everyone, from Dumbledore to Malfoy to McGonagall to Dolores Umbridge.

When Severus Snape became Hogwarts Headmaster, Flitwick stayed to teach. Later, however, when it seemed that Harry needed protection, he joined McGonagall in an attack on Snape (“You’ll do no more murder at Hogwarts!” (DH30)) that forced him to abandon his position at Hogwarts.

When the news came that Voldemort and his army would attack Hogwarts in early May, Flitwick constructed intricate magical defenses, and then took groups of fighters up to the three highest towers to work spells from above. When the battle was at its fiercest, Flitwick fought Yaxley and may have killed Dolohov.

Skills

Charms, duelling (if Lockhart is to be believed)

Other canon notes and references

Interests: decorates with live fairies quite a bit.
Drink: cherry syrup and soda with ice and an umbrella

Commentary

Etymology

Filius (JKR) is Latin for "son."

Flitwick sounds a lot like his wand-waving advice "Swish and Flick." Flitwick is also a town in Bedfordshire, on the River Flit (Wikipedia). The Anglo-Saxon place suffix -wick means "dwelling or farm" (CountryLovers Placenames).

Notes

Rowling was surprised by the elfin appearance on Professor Flitwick in the films; she had imagined him a small but otherwise typical-looking elderly wizard:

Is Flitwick a short human or is he some other type of being?

Just like Dean Thomas, Flitwick has a background that I now realise will never see its way into the books because it is not relevant to the plot. He is human but with a dash of goblin ancestry – something like a great, great, great grandfather. This is only interesting in as much as it gives him a perhaps unexpected empathy for people like Hagrid who are, in Death Eater parlance, half-breeds. However, Flitwick and Hagrid have never had a scene together, so Flitwick’s genetic composition has been relegated to the very back of my mind over the six novels in which he features, although I think it has informed his character. Slightly dotty though he may be, he is welcoming of all students, whatever their background (he did say in ‘Philosopher’s Stone’ that he was very fond of Lily, thus establishing that he was not prejudiced against Muggle-borns). (JKR: FAQ)

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Tags: charms elderly old small

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