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The Harry Potter universe is home a myriad of imaginative and spectacular creatures, some drawn from folklore while others spring forth from J.K. Rowling’s own mind. These are some of the best monsters found in the pages of Harry Potter’s complex universe, from the big to the small.
1. HOUSE ELF
House elves are one of the most famous creations in the Harry Potter universe, an ever present part of the world since the second book, Chamber of Secrets. House elves are magical creatures that exist to serve, acting as servants for various households throughout the wizarding world. House elves have to obey their masters command, with their rules designating that they must obey any orders given. House elves take rules so strictly that they will punish themselves if they ever disobey an order. If a house elf is ever freed, they must be given close to do so but most elves view this as a deep punishment to seat loose. The most famous house elves in the series are Dobby, former servant of the Malfoys who befriends Harry and Kreacher, Sirius Black’s mistreated house elf. Honorable mention goes to Twinky, Dobby’s girlfriend, a depressed house elf who works at Hogwarts and was, tragically, omitted from the films.
One of the most infamous and terrifying creatures in the Potterverse, Dementors feed on the negative emotions of others. J.K. Rowling has confirmed the monsters were inspired by depression, and cause their victims to feel the complete absence of hope and good feelings. Dementors also have an ability called the Dementor’s Kiss, which allows them to drain the soul out of a person and leave them an empty shell. Dementors initially are the guards of Azkaban but later switch sides to ally with Voldemort, who allows them to feed on Muggle victims.
Acromatulas are giant spiders, thought to be created through illegal wizard breeding and have a taste of human flesh. The most famous acromatulas is the character of Aragog, who Hagrid raised and released it into the Forbidden Forest. Aragog forms his own colony of acromatulas who dwell within the forest. Harry and Ron have a run in with the
A fearsome giant snake, the Basilisk was bred by dark wizards and is known as the ‘King of Serpents.’ The Basilisk can kill its victim if they look it in the eyes but indirect contact (such as seeing its reflection) will only petrify the victim, leaving them paralyzed instead of dead. Their venom is only extremely deadly, only able to be cured through Phoenix Tears. The Basilisk’s famous role comes as an antagonist of The Chamber of Secrets, where the ghost of Tom Riddle releases it from the titular chamber upon Hogwarts. No one is killed by the monster, only Petrified, before Harry confronts and slays the Basilisk in a showdown inside the Chamber.
Thestrals are winged horses, with skeletal-like bodies and large bat-like wings. They are seen as omens by the Ministry of Magic because they can only been seen by those that have witnessed death. Harry, Luna, and Neville are some of the students who can see them due their traumatic pasts. In actuality, thestrals are intelligent and able to discern friend from foe. They aid Harry and his friends multiple times, often being used as methods of transportation across vast distances.
What are some of your favorite Harry Potter creatures? Let us know!