New Pottermore Kicks Off With Harry Potter’s Family History From J.K. Rowling

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Of all the Wizarding family history we got in the Harry Potter series, the Potter family itself remained largely a mystery. Author J.K. Rowling has changed that with a major revamp to the Pottermore website featuring a rundown of the Potter family tree.

Most of what the new site has to offer is still forthcoming, but they’ll be bringing back the Sorting Hat to put you in the proper Hogwarts house, and you’ll be able to find out what your Patronus is, though we’re sure you’ve already gotten your own ideas over the years. Along with a new logo in Rowling’s own handwriting, the site kicked off with an explainer of what’s to come and the tracing of Harry’s lineage back a long, long ways:

In the Muggle world ‘Potter’ is an occupational surname, meaning a man who creates pottery. The wizarding family of Potters descends from the twelfth-century wizard Linfred of Stinchcombe, a locally well-beloved and eccentric man, whose nickname, ‘the Potterer’, became corrupted in time to ‘Potter’. Linfred was a vague and absent-minded fellow whose Muggle neighbours often called upon his medicinal services. None of them realised that Linfred’s wonderful cures for pox and ague were magical; they all thought him a harmless and lovable old chap, pottering about in his garden with all his funny plants. His reputation as a well-meaning eccentric served Linfred well, for behind closed doors he was able to continue the series of experiments that laid the foundation of the Potter family’s fortune. Historians credit Linfred as the originator of a number of remedies that evolved into potions still used to this day, including Skele-gro and Pepperup Potion. His sales of such cures to fellow witches and wizards enabled him to leave a significant pile of gold to each of his seven children upon his death.

The history goes on to reveal that Potters sat on the Wizengamot twice and that another invented a certain hair-taming potion that you may remember from The Goblet of Fire. You can read the whole thing over on the revamped Pottermore along with tons of other content to keep you busy until the rest of the site’s features go live.

Good luck getting anything done for the rest of the day.


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Dan Van Winkle
Dan Van Winkle (he) is an editor and manager who has been working in digital media since 2013, first at now-defunct Geekosystem (RIP), and then at The Mary Sue starting in 2014, specializing in gaming, science, and technology. Outside of his professional experience, he has been active in video game modding and development as a hobby for many years. He lives in North Carolina with Lisa Brown (his wife) and Liz Lemon (their dog), both of whom are the best, and you will regret challenging him at Smash Bros.