Think you know everything there is about the Hogwarts Express? Here’s everything a true Potterhead should know about the iconic train!
The Hogwarts Express, like the castle and The-Boy-Who-Lived himself, is one of the Harry Potter series’ most iconic and beloved locations. Like many of the characters and locations in J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, there is much more to the Hogwarts Express than meets the eye!
For the latest post on The Blog That Must Not Be Named, we’re exploring the Hogwarts Express, it’s wildly intriguing history and explaining everything you need to know about the Wizarding World‘s most iconic form of transportation.
As J.K. Rowling revealed on Pottermore (now WizardingWorld.com), the Hogwarts Express wasn’t always around to transport students to the school. Instead, students would arrive at Hogwarts using any form of transportation they wanted. Some would arrive on broomsticks (not easy when you’re carrying your school equipment) or on the backs of various magical creatures, while others would attempt to Apparate (not the safest option) onto the school grounds.
In spite of various incidents and the many, many muggle sightings, it wasn’t until the International Statute of Secrecy arrived in 1962 that a more discreet method of transportation was introduced. At this point, Portkeys were implemented and placed across the country, but this came with a whole new collection of problems. In many cases, students would miss their slot or fail to find the Portkey, while many others would find themselves ‘Portkey-sick’ in the Hospital Wing.
After admitting that Portkey’s weren’t the best form of transportation, Minister of Magic Ottaline Gambol came up with an ingenious, daring and ultimately controversial idea. As a fan of Muggle inventions, Gambol saw potential in steam locomotives, which is where the idea of the Hogwarts Express was born.
While the exact details were kept secret from the wizarding community, the Ministry of Magic conducted a large-scale operation involving one hundred and sixty-seven Memory Charms and the biggest Concealment Charm ever performed in Britain, in order to obtain the Hogwarts Express. The morning after this operation, the residents of Hogsmeade village woke to find the Hogwarts Express, along with a new railway station, which hadn’t been there the night before. Meanwhile, Muggle railway employees in Crewe were left feeling like they had forgotten something important for the rest of the year.
A handful of magical modifications were made to the Hogwarts Express before it was approved by the Ministry. Many pure-blood families were against the idea of using Muggle technology, however, they quickly changed their tune when the Ministry decreed that students would arrive at school on the train or not attend at all.
What would you give to ride the Hogwarts Express all the way to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry? What snacks would you buy from the Honeydukes Express trolley? Let us know in the comments section below!
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