Get Exclusive Access to Our Harry Potter Trivia Page
Foreshadowing and Easter Eggs
J.K. Rowling seemed to know exactly what she intended to write for the entire series immediately from the start. So here goes a long list of genius foreshadowing that stand out to me (mostly in chronological order) and easter eggs that you probably missed:
Within the first chapter of the very first book, Hagrid rides a motorcycle that belongs to Sirius Black – who everyone forgets about – until he comes back in book three.
Next up is Harry’s first potions class, where Snape asks him about a bezoar. This doesn’t return until book six, but it saves Ron’s life.
Fred and George are punished because they thought it would have been funny to make snowballs hit the back of Quirrel’s head. Later we learn that to be Voldemort’s face – ouch. For the first time (and last), they didn’t deserve punishment.
Ron notices that Riddle (Voldemort) got a special award for service to the school while cleaning trophies for detention. Later, he humorously guessed he killed Myrtle to get it. In fact, Ron was right, Voldemort did kill Myrtle, though not to get the award.
The Room of Requirement
Dumbledore mentions he needed a restroom to Harry – in book four – and a room appeared suited just for that purpose. However, Dumbledore couldn’t ever find it again. Later, in book five, Harry realizes that the Room of Requirement was that restroom and the training place of the DA.
While the Weasley’s and Harry are searching through Sirius’ house in attempt to clean it, they come upon a certain locket none of them could open. Later we learn it just happens to be the heirloom of Salazar Slytherin and one of Voldemort’s horcruxes.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Until very recently, this easter egg wouldn’t have had much significance. Now that it’s a new movie and a story written by J.K. Rowling herself (which you can find the trailers for here) we can really appreciate its appearance in book seven.
While Ron and Harry are working on their Divination homework in book four, Ron and Harry correctly guess the three events of the tournament. While the last one doesn’t particularly pertain to the event it does foreshadow the man who set it up – Mad-Eye Moody, or Barty Crouch Jr., who was impersonating him.
The Vanishing Cabinet
This magical artifact and its pair pop up three times throughout the series. First, Harry comes out of the fireplace of Borgin and Burkes during his first attempt at using the Floo network. While he is inside, Draco Malfoy enters and he is forced to hide within the cabinet – at the time, broken. Later in the fifth book, Fred and George mention trapping a student inside. During the sixth book, Draco fixes the cabinet, then uses it to sneak Death Eaters inside Hogwarts.
Scabbers is the Weasley’s rat. During the third book he is in Ron’s possession. Throughout the book, J.K. Rowling drops many hints that culminate in the revelation that Scabbers is, in fact, Peter Pettigrew as an animagus.
This one is sneaky. I missed it during my first and second re-reads of book five. As it progresses, their are some clues foreshadowing Sirius’ death, most notably his animagus being the Grim, signaling imminent doom.
To enter Dumbeldore’s office, one must say a password to the sculpture of a Gryffindor. This permits one to access the door to the Headmaster’s office. It’s a pun: Griffin-door. The knocker is a griffin as well.
Fighting Your Friends
In the first book, Neville stands up to Harry, Ron, and Hermione when they go out after curfew. While he is frozen solid for it, Dumbledore awards Neville ten points for standing up to them, making Gryffindor win the House Cup. He gets those points because Dumbledore recognizes how challenging it is to stand up to your friends. Dumbledore would know, as he was forced to stand up to his dearest friend Grindelwald when he had become the most powerful wizard (at the time, with the Deathstick aka, Elder Wand). Besides the easter egg, this is a prominent moral for book one.
The easter egg pops up everywhere. That’s because it is known literally as the magic number. J.K. Rowling takes it to heart as she writes. It is the amount of people on the quidditch team, the number of Voldemort’s horcurxes, number of the heads of snakes in the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets,
Another important numerical easter egg in the books are threes. Three Deathly Hallows and trios of friends. Besides the obvious Harry, Ron and Hermione, there are Draco, Crabb, and Goyle. Each trifecta has deep symbolism and importance throughout the series.
The Last of the Easter eggs and Foreshadows: The Thirteenth Seat
Professor Trelawney once expresses her concerns of being the thirteenth person to sit down at a table; she fears that death will come to the first to stand.While in her case, this never happened, during a meeting thirteen Order Of the Phoenix members sat down at one table. Guess who was the first to rise? Sirius Black.