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The Harry Potter Canon

"Firstly and most importantly, we enclose your official Ministry of Magic Approved Certificate of Membership, which proclaims that you are part of the wizarding community and which should be jealously guarded from Muggles. Your Hogwarts notepad and pencil, also enclosed, come from Mr Filch's rarely unlocked store cupboard."
-- excerpt from the welcome letter, Harry Potter Fan Club (from private source)


In the late 1990s, Bloomsbury created an Official Harry Potter Fan Club and invited children from Britain to join. There was no charge. There was never a United States chapter of the Club. One of the perks for joining the Club was several issues of The Daily Prophet, a three-page newsletter detailing goings-on in the wizarding world. Each of these newsletters bore the notice ©J.K.Rowling and, according to Bloomsbury (email dated 2 June 2004), was written by her (also SDNY).

The newsletters were clearly written early in Rowling’s creation of the Harry Potter mythos. Some terms are different and a few facts don’t jibe with the established story of the books. Overall, however, the news stories and sports reports fit right into the “look and feel” of the Rowling’s world. The names and the events bear the marks of humour and parody which all of Rowling’s writing shows. The names of some minor characters, for example Gwenog Jones, are first found in the newsletters, turned up in Famous Wizard cards, in the Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them schoolbooks and eventually in the novels. The dates on each issue are the dates of the club; they don’t fit into the timeline of the series, which was not established very well at that point.

Calendar and Dates

The dates on each issue do not match the dates of the stories, rather they indicate the date that the newsletter itself was published. The stories in the newsletters appear to date from approximately 1992-1993, the timeframe of the second and third books.

Other Canon Notes

The cost per issue of the Daily Prophet was five Knuts the summer before Harry's first year (PS5) but by the time of the newsletters appears to have risen to seven Knuts (DP1).

Other canon
Daily Prophet newsletters
Dimensions 4 issues, 3-4 pages each
Abbreviation DP
Canonicity Secondary Canon


Bloomsbury Books replaced the Harry Potter Fan Club with the "Bloomsbury Web Club" sometime between the last newsletter on 1 October 1999 and the release of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire book on 8 July 2000.Bloomsbury Books Harry Potter website competition 2000

In May 2004, J. K. Rowling launched her own Harry Potter website:

Since April 2012, the official website for J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter books has been Pottermore.

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The Harry Potter Canon