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Hogwarts is the most important Harry Potter place in any of the books or movies. The school is the setting for every book, headed by Albus Dumbledore for the first six, then Professor Snape, lastly followed by Professor McGonagall. Hogwarts is an enormous scottish castle mainly reached by train. However, it is possible to apparate in and out of the castle in the seventh books (Headmaster Dumbledore had banned it, but he was killed at the end of the sixth book) and in the “Goblet of Fire” two others schools come, one by boat and the other by a pegasus-pulled flying carriage.


The Hogwarts Houses

On the day any student first arrives he or she is sorted into one of the four houses: Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin. A magical sorting hat would be placed on the person’s head, and it would choose the best house for said person.

The Hogwarts Crest

The Hogwarts Crest

Of the four Houses at the magical school, Gryffindor is focused on mostly, though some enemies of Harry’s are in Slytherin, and Mr. Potter is required to sneak into their common room. The lost diadem of Ravenclaw is found in the seventh movie, but besides that, Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff are rarely mentioned at all. That doesn’t make them bad houses however, as the sorting hat reveals in book one. So where do you fit in? Take the Harry Potter House Quiz to find out.

House Defining Characteristics
Gryffindor Brave, Couragous, Honourable 
Hufflepuff Parient, Kind, Trusting, Deticated
Ravenclaw Wisdom, Curiousity
Slytherin Cunning, Clever


Classes at Hogwarts

Hogwarts Castle link to AmazonAll first years are given almost no choice in what classes they attend. First off is transfiguration, taught by Professor McGonagall. Students learn to transform things – live or inanimate. Next is potions, taught by Professor Snape. Charms is taught by Professor Flitwick and Herbology by Professor Sprout. There is also Astronomy and the History of Magic. Every completed year at Hogwarts gives the students more opportunity to choose classes they favor and drop out of the ones they don’t. It is even an option  to get a time-turner (turns back time) to make it to more classes. Hermione is given one is book three. Other classes – optional or required in later years – include Alchemy, Apparition, Arithmancy, Care of Magical Creatures, Divination, Muggle Studies, Occlumency, and Study of Ancient Runes. The O.W.L (Ordinary Wizarding Level) exams are taken in the fifth year. If students successfully complete those they advance to N.E.W.T (Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Test).


Hogwarts Subject – Defense Against the Dark Arts

Defense Against the Darks Arts is a very interesting subject at this school of witchcraft and wizardry. Supposedly it was cursed by Tom Riddle (Voldemort) so that teachers can hold that position only one year. In book one of Harry Potter Professor Quirrell holds it, who turns out to be assisting Voldemort and is killed by the end.  

In book two, the post is taken by Gilderoy Lockhart. He is a very famed publisher of a set of books concerning his own feats. It is revealed, that when he is in the Chamber of Secrets, all his works were written about other people. Lockhart then used memory charms to prevent them from ruining his plan. He loses his memory in the end due to a broken wand and is therefore removed from his teaching duties.  

In the third book, Professor Remus Lupin, aka Moony, is hired. It is revealed he is a werewolf. The Professor was also accused of assisting Sirius Black (falsely accused murderer supposedly hunting Harry) get into the castle by Professor Snape.    

In book four, Mad-Eye Moody teaches the class. He gives the students a very hands-on approach, as well as showing his students the Unforgivable Curses. Moody helps Harry in the Triwizard Cup, but then it is revealed that he is actually Bartemius (Barty) Crouch Jr.. He was working for Lord Voldemort and has succeeding in giving him Harry. After, when his real identity is discovered, he is sent back to Azkaban, the wizard Prison.  

In book five, Professor Umbridge takes the post. Hated by the students because she is from the Ministry – who wants to limit their knowledge of magic – she doesn’t let them preform magic. Because of this, the students create a group taught by Harry called Dumbledore’s Army (DA for short). Its purpose is to prepare them if they ever need to fight You-Know-Who or his Death Eaters. Eventually, the Minister of Magic discovers it and then comes to Hogwarts to take Dumbledore to Azkaban (he thinks he is building an army against the Ministry). Afterwards, Umbridge nearly tortures Harry, and then is carried off by centaurs.  

In book six, Snape – finally – gets the post. Slughorn takes over his old role as potions teacher, so Snape gets promoted. This year – at least compared to others – is relatively uneventful in the manner of Defense Against the Dark Arts.  

In the final book – though Harry isn’t there to see it – Defense Against the Dark Arts changes dramatically. As Voldemort is on the rise and it is obvious now Snape is somehow in league with him, the class loses the ‘Defense Against’ part in its title. Yes, you read me correctly; it is just Dark Arts. They go so far as to practice the Cruciartus Curse on first years.   That about sums up Defense Against the Dark Arts at Hogwarts.