Female magical beings that have the ability to drive men uncontrollably wild, especially when they ‘turn on’ their charm or perform the sensual dance for which they’re known (GF8, GF22). However, when they get angry, they turn into bird-like creatures which throw fire. A group of veela served as the mascots for the Bulgarian National Quidditch Team at the Quidditch World Cup, though they were kicked out when they distracted the referee (GF8). Veela hairs can be used as wand cores (GF18). Fleur Delacour is part veela; her wand’s core is a hair from the head of her grandmother, a veela. There are no male veela (JKR).
The veela are based on a number of sources that describe Eastern European nature spirits of legend:
"Vily" are Slovic fairies who can take the form of birds.
"Vilas," as they appear in Serbian legends, are "mountain nymphs, young and beautiful, clad in white, with long flowing hair. Their voices are said to resemble those of woodpeckers. They shoot, according to popular belief, deadly arrows at men, and sometimes carry off children..." (The Fairy Mythology by Thomas Keightley, 1878.)
The book A Field Guide to the Little People describes the Vily (singular: Vila) in detail. They are nature guardians, caring for the trees, streams, and flowers in their domains. They are extremely jealous of beautiful women. Their moods are as changeable as the weather and they can both cause and cure illnesses. A human who tarries too long in their territory may be shot dead with arrows or die suddenly from heart attack, lumbago, or by being buried under an avalanche. Vily have fair complexions and curly, reddish-brown hair which falls to their feet. They wear shimmering white clothing or coverings of green leaves. Interestingly, those born on Tuesday or Sunday can most easily see Vily.
Veela are fascinating, alluring, beautiful... But what are they? Are they beings or beats? Birds or women? Some sort of in-between?