Harry Potter: A History of Magic (2017) Movie Script

Have a watch of this.Phew!
"As there is little foolish wand-waving here,
"many of you will hardly believe this is magic.
"I don't expect you will really understand the beauty of the softly
"simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes.
"The delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins,
"bewitching the mind, ensnaring the senses.
"I can teach you how to bottle fame,
"brew glory, even stopper death.
"If you aren't as big a bunch of dunderheads
"as I usually have to teach."
In Harry Potter, JK Rowling created one of modern fiction's
most alluring and magical worlds.
But it's a vision based on more than mere make-believe.
A lot of the things that we read in fiction in Harry Potter
were actually believed in and enacted upon in history in the past.
What Jo has done is, she's taken known values,
she's taken familiar stories
and added them in her own beautiful blend.
My mandrakes aren't quite like that.
The search for magical knowledge has obsessed humans since time began.
From the age-old quest to conquer death...
..to master destiny...
..and overturn fate...
Look at this. Oh, my Lord!
I think it worked.
..human beings have dreamt up magical ways of thinking.
I don't think everyone should believe in magic,
but I'm not sure I would trust anyone who doesn't,
in some way or another.
This is the story of the real-life magic
at the heart of Harry Potter.
This year marks a special anniversary
and some very strange celebrations are under way.
We came all the way from Brooklyn, New York.
This is my mom. This is my daughter.
And these are my granddaughters.
I've come as Moaning Myrtle because she has a lot of personality
for a dead person.Yes.
I'm Professor Minerva McGonagall and I can't do a proper accent
so I'm not really going to try.
Go on.
You're welcome to share my cubicle, Harry.
It's been 20 years since an orphaned boy wizard made muggles
out of all of us.
There's something buried deep within all of us, I think,
that would like to get the owl and be told...
..you are not only unique and special,
I'm going to take you to where your people are.
I mean, that's such a seductive idea, I think.
That's not just something that children crave,
it's something that all of us crave.
I've kind of loved to be in that world.
I'd just love to be in that world.
I wish I was a wizard!
But Rowling's wizarding world is closer to our own than we think.
As Harry's great friend Hermione Granger once said...
Don't legends always have a basis in fact?
In The Magician's Nephew by CS Lewis,
there is one of the most beautiful fictional worlds
that I've ever read, which is the world between the worlds,
which is a place where you're in a forest and there are multiple pools
and every pool you jump into will take you to a different world and
that to me has always been a library.
I was one of those bookish children
who never left the library if she could help it.
So, yeah, of course, to me, a library is truly a place of magic.
At the British Library,
all kinds of magical preparations are taking place.
And it's all to create a new exhibition
which aims to reveal the link between the real history of magic
and JK Rowling's writing.
And it's all there from the very first book.
Most of the JK Rowling material has never been exhibited before.
It's the first time it's going on display.
So this is a typed synopsis of Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone.
In the early '90s,
this was written to be sent to agents and to publishers
to sell the story.
Yeah, she's having to sell Harry Potter.
You wouldn't think it, would you?
The conceit is that we muggles,
we sort of glimpse this hidden world
because we know some of the mythology,
but what we think we know is often wrong.
The real magic, as it were, is not quite as we believe it to be.
Using pre-existing myths or ideas of fantastic creatures and so on
was a way of giving texture to the world.
I think JK Rowling used magic
and the history of magic in an exceedingly sophisticated way,
and possibly there are aspects of it that your general reader
just might not even see.
"The ancient study of alchemy is concerned with making
"the philosopher's stone,
"a legendary substance with astonishing powers.
"The stone will transform any metal into pure gold.
"It also produces the elixir of life,
"which will make the drinker immortal."
The pursuit of immortality was a quest to which medieval alchemists
devoted their lives.
And one amongst them became the stuff of legend.
"There have been many reports of the philosopher's stone over the
"centuries, but the only stone currently in existence belongs
"to Mr Nicolas Flamel, the noted alchemist and opera lover.
"Mr Flamel, who celebrated his 665th birthday last year,
"enjoys a quiet life in Devon with his wife Perenelle, 658."
In the stories, Nicolas Flamel,
he's the person who's actually discovered the key to eternal life
and is alive and well.
I hate to spoil the story, but he is based on a real-life figure
who lived in Paris in the early 15th century
and obviously, sadly, he did die,
but we do actually have his tombstone.
It's quite a magical object in itself.
Nicolas Flamel may not have achieved immortality,
but alchemists continued their search for the elixir of life.
And some of their mysterious instructions survive
on a magical scroll.
Let's take this one out of the box.
So, this is the...amazing... Oh, my God.
..Ripley scroll. There you are.
It's extraordinary.I think it's made about the year 1600...
and it tells you how to make the philosopher's stone.
Oh, look.
Isn't that incredible? Oh, it's so gorgeous. Look at this.
I've never seen...
anything quite like this before.
I would imagine few people have.
What fascinates me about alchemy is, you have this mixture of science,
actual science, right?
Because this was old chemistry,
so some of it is genuinely scientific.
They were observing phenomena that we recognise now as the basis
for chemistry. So it's just this fascinating hybrid, isn't it?
Yeah, combination of all these ideas.
And I'm really disappointed you haven't tried to make one.
Because the joke's on us if this works!
We'll make sure it does work.Yeah.
Many scientific discoveries were actually made as a result of people
carrying out that alchemical process.
There's a very famous painting,
it's by Joseph Wright of Derby,
and it shows a German chemist, alchemist,
in the 17th century.
He's trying to create gold and he's boiling a flask of urine!
He doesn't create gold, but he discovers phosphorus in the process.
The relationship between magic and science,
particularly in the early modern period, is extremely important.
What powers are there out there that we perhaps can't see
but which we can harness and adapt for our own use?
And to some extent, that is a form of magic.
Perhaps penicillin is a form of magic.
It's just magic that consistently works.
But even in our rational, enlightened age of today,
perhaps there's still a place for the old ways of thinking.
Magic is fascinating to me, clearly,
because I've spent a lot of time writing about it,
but I think that it connects to very important things about what it is
to be human and what human beings want and what they believe.
"When he had been younger, Harry had dreamed and dreamed of some unknown
"relation coming to take him away, but it had never happened.
"The Dursleys were his only family.
"Yet sometimes he thought, or maybe hoped,
"that strangers in the street seemed to know him.
"Very strange strangers they were, too."
Children believe in magic because they're starting to make sense of
and control their world.
But I think we all have that inside us.
The world is complex and largely unknowable,
and although we've moved on to science,
I think that we all, at heart,
retain a certain amount of magical thinking.
Locomotor Wibbly!
Whoosh! I've got to do a whoosh sound,
it's the only way it makes it real to me.
To trace the real history of magic,
there can be few better places than the British Library.
It has 150 million items
and the curators have been searching amongst them for over a year.
As every Hogwarts student knows,
a good magical textbook can save your life or solve your problems.
But in the 16th century,
members of the British cultural establishment believed in them, too.
So, this is one of my favourite manuscripts in the exhibition.
It's an actual book of spells and is extremely beautiful to look at,
I think, and has a lot of interesting content.
A real magical textbook,
and it belonged to the Elizabethan poet Gabriel Harvey.
But this one is an experiment or a spell on how to be invisible
and how it must be prepared.
There's lots of text written about Gabriel Harvey,
but as far as I know, I don't think he ever disappeared.
HE RECITES THE MANUSCRIP "By the mercy which you bear upon mankind,
"make me to be invisible."
"He set off, drawing the invisibility cloak tight around him
"as he walked.
"The library was pitch-black and very eerie.
"Harry lit a lamp to see his way along the rows of books."
Conveying the rich imaginary world of JK Rowling is a huge challenge
for the curators.
To help them, they've enlisted Harry Potter illustrator Jim Kay,
whose drawings and paintings will bring to life the links between
literary fantasy and historical fact.
So I first started illustrating Harry Potter
back in 2013,
and back then,
I thought, "Well, it'd take about six months to do all of book one,"
and it actually took me two and a half years
working seven days a week,
usually 12 hours at once, a day.
It was terrible pressure and you don't want to mess up
the world's most successful children's book.
The British Library team are selecting examples of Jim's work
to feature in the show.
Who is this?McGonagall.
It's actually based loosely on my partner,
who I aged for this painting, I must stress.
Jim's most intriguing illustrations are these curious-looking specimens,
mandrake roots and their seedlings.
Harmless enough, you might think,
but these roots must be handled with care.
"Harry snapped the earmuffs over his ears.
"They shut out sound completely.
"Professor Sprout put a pink, fluffy pair over her own ears,
"rolled up the sleeves of her robes,
"grasped one of the tufty plants firmly and pulled hard.
"Harry let out a gasp of surprise that no-one could hear.
"Instead of roots,
"a small, muddy and extremely ugly baby popped out of the earth.
"The leaves were growing right out of his head!
"He had pale-green mottled skin
"and was clearly bawling at the top of his lungs.
"Professor Sprout took a large plant pot from under the table and
"plunged the mandrake into it, burying him in dark, damp compost,
"until only the tufted leaves were visible.
"Professor Sprout dusted off her hands,
"gave them all the thumbs-up and removed her own earmuffs.
"'As our mandrakes are only seedlings,
"'their cries won't kill yet,' she said calmly,
"as though she'd just done nothing more exciting than water a begonia.
"'However, they will knock you out for several hours.'"
In herbal folklore, the bloodcurdling scream of the mandrake
was thought to kill or send its listener mad.
The British Library have uncovered an unusual illustration of the myth.
A very unusual illustration indeed.
My mandrakes aren't quite like that.
Broadly speaking, I adopted the myth with some tweaks.
Very similar. No dogs involved in mine, though.
Humans did actually pull them up
and mandrake root was an essential component in a restorative potion
that was needed at Hogwarts that year.
There are real mandrakes and the root is human-shaped,
so I think that's where the myth came from, isn't it?
As often happens, people extrapolated from the real object.
The mandrake is no longer commonplace.
Yet the elaborate folklore that surrounds it all came down
to this rather small, grubby root.
There's definitely something in these roots that...
Yeah, anthropomorphic.
It's almost like a sort of pot belly.
So you could have a more distended stomach
leading to legs...
which I quite like.
These severed hands symbolise its use as an anaesthetic
in amputations.
Medieval herbals like these reveal the wonder and mystery
inspired by plants.
This is a time when most people couldn't get access
to any form of medicine. A small cut could kill you, you know?
It's no wonder that people put so much stock
in the potential life-saving properties
of the plants around them, really.
Plants are a key ingredient in JK Rowling's wizarding world,
where they're used to make potions, and supplies can be found
in the apothecary of a certain Mr Mulpepper.
His name might sound a little bit like another exhibit in the show,
the Complete Herbal by one Nicholas Culpeper.
So Culpeper really was a herbal hero.
He was the guy who revolutionised medicine in Britain.
He took the power from the physicians and gave it back
to the common people.
Nicholas Culpeper grew up in the Sussex countryside
here in Isfield.
So, this footpath here would've been the exact footpath
that the young Culpeper would have walked down
from his grandfather's church over to the village,
and it's here he would've learned all about
the flowers and the plants of the English countryside.
The book was published almost 400 years ago and
it's still in print today.
In the 1600s, you could buy it on a street corner.
You can buy it online today.
It's the book that's been in print for the longest
apart from the Bible.
Culpeper's book has special significance for JK Rowling.
Oh, yes.
I know this book.
This is Culpeper's Complete Herbal and I own two copies of this.
Am I allowed to touch this?
I will be tremendously careful, I'm so scared.
Oh, wow, look.
It's not even the properties of the plants,
it's just the way that they wrote about the plants
and observed them and tied them to planetary movements and so on.
There's such a poetry to it.
"Oh, yes, it is fat, unctuous and temperate.
"Generated of that which is moist, aerius and moderately hot."
I love it.
"Midnight came and went while Harry was reading and rereading a passage
"about the uses of scurvy-grass,
"lovage and sneezewort, and not taking in a word of it.
"These plants are most efficacious in the inflaming of the brain and
"are therefore much used in confusing and befuddlement drafts,
"where the wizard is desirous of producing hot-headiness
"and recklessness."
Even when I didn't really use what they were saying,
I found it inspirational.
I found the way they talked about these plants inspirational.
This is a gorgeous book. Look at this.
And sometimes I would use old names to make my own names, you know?
You just look at the way that they put the words together.
Sea colewort - love it.
Nicholas Culpeper was also accused of witchcraft about ten years before
he published his book.
In 1642, he was accused of being a practising witch.
Now, this is possibly because of antagonisms that he was creating
with the College of Physicians,
but it's also because I think people
that are mixing up herbs, creating potions,
there's always going to be those questions about them.
"Non-magic people, more commonly known as muggles,
"were particularly afraid of magic in medieval times,
"but not very good at recognising it.
"On the rare occasion they did catch a real witch or wizard,
"burning had no effect whatsoever.
"The witch or wizard would perform a basic flame freezing charm
"and then pretend to shriek with pain
"while enjoying a gentle tickling sensation.
"Indeed, Wendelin the Weird enjoyed being burnt so much
"that she allowed herself to be caught no fewer than
"47 times in various disguises."
Witches and wizards in the Potterverse,
they are morally neutral.
You are as good or as bad as you decide to be.
There's nothing inherently wrong about performing magic,
it's simply an ability that some people have.
Yet in history, most references to witches are resoundingly negative.
And the link between witches and powerful dark magic
was forged by a book.
So this is the earliest illustrated printed treatise on witchcraft.
It's called De Lamiis Et Phythonicis Mulieribus,
which roughly translate as "of witches and soothsayers".
This is the first time
that you get a printed visual representation of witches.
And it was published in 1489,
And it was published in 1489,
written by a man called Ulrich Molitor.
In the book, Molitor claims
that witches were not as powerful as people thought,
but his illustrator clearly didn't read his text,
because the drawings tell a different story.
So here you have two women.
They're old, they're haggard and they're evil-looking.
They're dangerous and they're powerful.
It shows them as able to create dangerous weather magic,
hailstorms, using cauldrons.
This is the earliest printed image of witches using a cauldron.
The book was published in 49 different editions
and was still in print a century later.
The whole text is written in Latin,
which wouldn't really be that accessible to your average person
even if they could read.
But the images are something that everyone can read
and that is where the power of this book comes in,
and it cemented the iconography of how we understand witches to look.
At the edge of the Atlantic on the North Cornwall coast,
Boscastle is one of the most magical places in the land.
It even has its own museum of witchcraft.
So this broomstick belonged to Olga Hunt of Manaton.
She used to, on the night of the full moon,
scamper and leap about
on this broomstick on the rocks of Haytor, on Dartmoor.
Olga Hunt's broomstick is one of the artefacts
that will feature in the show.
The British Library has been scouring the museum
for other objects that might fit.
There are 3,000 to choose from.
This cauldron has a very unusual story attached to it
because it exploded,
much like the one in the stories of Harry Potter.
Ooh, this is interesting!
The tarred head.
I most definitely believe in magic.
Do I have to justify that?
The museum owns one of the largest collections of witchcraft artefacts
in the world.
So this is a dried cat.
They're often found in old buildings
and they were used as a protection charm to ward off infestation.
You'd think that a live cat would do a better job of it, but here we are.
And here we've got a selection of wands,
one of which is going to feature in the exhibition.
Now, wands are subtle tools.
They're used to direct energy,
but they're also used for creating a magical space.
We have an example here of a very dark use...
..of the practice, which is a blasting rod.
And blasting rods are basically used to blast people and to direct
negative energy at them for a curse of some form.
Oh, it could kill somebody very easily, I should imagine,
so... Used by the right person in the right way.
So it's kept behind glass normally.
Every Hogwarts pupil needs their very own magic wand.
But no two wands are the same.
"'You talk about wands like they've got feelings,' said Harry.
"'Like they can think for themselves.'
"'The wand chooses the wizard,' said Ollivander.
"'That much has always been clear to those of us who have studied wandlore.'"
Wands are an essential part of casting a spell
and everyone has their favourite.
Did that work?
If we could only use them in the muggle world,
they'd come in very handy.
I would cast a spell to make TJ in my class like me.
Oh, not on telly!
But for the spell to work,
you need exactly the right flick or twist of the wrist.
ALL:Piertotum locomotor!
I couldn't find anything on wands, so I just made it all up.
That was all me and I had so much fun
and actually, I do remember exactly where I was.
I literally was sitting under a tree out in the open
on a very warm summer's day when I wrote that chapter,
the wand shop in the Philosopher's Stone.
And I just sat there and made up all these properties
and the cores and, yeah, I really enjoyed that.
So, yeah, no, I'm afraid I don't know anything about...
I don't know what anyone else has said about wands.
I made the whole thing up!
But there are folk out there
who have been making wands for centuries.
Dusty Miller, father and son, come from a long line of wandmakers.
I'm Dusty XII.
XIII, sorry. My father was XII. Hello, Grandad!
My son is the XIII. XIV!
I like that, I got promoted then. Did you see that?
We work for the tree spirits,
so they tell us when to go and collect a piece of wood,
where to collect it,
which tree to collect it from.
It's all very complicated
and often means getting up in the middle of the night
to be in the forest at daybreak.
Why they always want daybreak, I don't know.
Why it can't be lunchtime...
another matter entirely. Trees don't have lunch!
No, that's true, they don't.
The wood they collect is made into wands,
which they believe channel the sacred power of the trees.
Because we have this partnership with the tree spirits,
when they tell us to make certain tools, to create certain items for
people to make changes in their lives...
and be able to... Maybe do healing on other people, or themselves,
then we're quite happy to do that
and that's what we've spent our entire lifetimes doing.
In Rowling's wizarding world,
the effects of a spell can happen in an instant.
Expecto Patronum!
You just have to say the words the right way.
Take the doubling spell.
The spells often have their roots in classical languages
and Rowling's degree in French and Classics turned out to be useful.
Sometimes I just invented it.
It usually depended on the gravity of what I was inventing.
I often tended to give a richer provenance to things
that were very significant, like the Cruciatus Curse
or Avada Kedavra, whereas the more...
The fun things, Wingardium Leviosa is exactly what it sounds like
and it's flippant and it's fun.
Wingardium Leviosa!
It's only in fourth year that Harry encounters the most sinister spells
in the wizarding world -
the three unforgivable curses.
What are the unforgivable curses and what do they do?
There's Imperio, which is the controlling curse.
Crucio is a torture curse.
It makes whoever you're casting it at go into great pain.
So...pretty bad.
And the final curse, the most dreadful of them all -
the killing spell.
"Avada Kedavra!
"A blast of green light blazed through Harry's eyelids
"and he heard something heavy fall to the ground beside him.
"The pain in his scar reached such a pitch that he retched
"and then it diminished.
"Terrified of what he was about to see, he opened his stinging eyes.
"Cedric was lying spread-eagled on the ground beside him.
"He was dead."
It sounds so powerful, doesn't it, Avada Kedavra?
It's got a real force to it.
It's Aramaic, I think.
Well, that is genuinely the derivation of abracadabra,
not many people know that. That's where abracadabra came from.
And literally translated, it means, "May the thing be destroyed."
Abracadabra is today often thought of as a charm
which stage magicians use when they are pulling a rabbit out of a hat,
but actually it was first used in Roman times as a protection
against catching the disease malaria.
"'Double divination this afternoon,'
"Harry groaned, looking down.
"Divination was his least favourite subject, apart from potions.
"Professor Trelawney kept predicting Harry's death,
"which he found extremely annoying."
A nice item relating to divination.
"On wonders past and present and to come."
About the prophecies of Old Mother Shipton,
who was a famous witch that made prophecies from Knaresborough.
A nice interesting image of a witch, which I think is...
Yes, in no way a cliche, with her enormous nose
and her chin that almost meets the tip of it!
That's great.
I have a lot of fun with divination in the Potter books
because I make it quite clear
that you get lucky once every million times.
Free will is the abiding principle of the Potter books, not prophecy.
"There was a lot more to magic, as Harry quickly found out,
"than waving your wand and saying a few funny words."
The exhibition will be divided
into subjects corresponding to the Hogwarts curriculum,
from divination to astronomy.
The most spectacular and bizarre exhibits
belong to a section on care of magical creatures.
So this is Edward Topsell's History Of Four-footed Beasts.
He describes a number of different beasts
that feature in Harry Potter, including the Sphinx.
Yeah. She's interesting.
Yeah.Very unusual. It's not how we'd actually imagine a Sphinx
to look like from classical mythology, is it?
No. They are bred in India and Ethiopia.
When it comes to beasts, the hippogriff or the dragon,
there are certain beasts that absolutely must be in Potter
because they're so well known, you would just expect to see them there.
And I've played with them to an extent.
This one dates from probably the early 13th century.
First of all, the phoenix is making its own funeral pyre
by picking twigs and leaves and branches from the trees.
Oh, that's fantastic. And there you are.I love that.
It's on fire and it's going to rise from the ashes.
That's my favourite creature. He's gorgeous, isn't he?Yeah.
Stunning. I also like this chap,
because that's like an Augerey, which I invented.
There's no such thing, but I call it the Irish phoenix.
These are so beautiful.
Incredibly human-looking owl.
In Harry Potter, JK Rowling refers to over 100 species
of mythical creature, drawn from across the globe.
In every society and every culture,
there is the practice of magic
or the understanding of the supernatural.
Magic is a universal language.
In the Department of African Studies,
one curator has made an exciting discovery.
It's a text written in Ge'ez, an ancient language of Ethiopia.
"If you wish to turn into a lion or transform yourself into a lion,
"read the above prayer
"and write it on a silk cloth
"and tie it around your head.
"Or if you wish to be
"a serpent, write this and tie it on your wrist."
This is a prayer for transformation or to turn...
You know, to change into something else.
By the 15th century,
this type of magic had been outlawed by Ethiopia's Christian king.
So manuscripts like these are exceptionally rare.
But despite its Ethiopian roots,
this branch of magic is very similar
to an important subject taught at Hogwarts.
This book is defence against the dark arts.
So the purpose of this talisman is to protect the client
from real or imagined harm.
In Defence against the Dark Arts,
Harry's magical ability shines
when he masters wizarding's most powerful protective charm.
"'Expecto Patronum,' he yelled.
"And out of the end of his wand burst not a shapeless cloud of mist
"but a blinding, dazzling, silver animal.
"He screwed up his eyes to see what it was.
"It looked like a horse.
"It was galloping silently away from him
"across the black surface of the lake."
As the last few objects arrive from museums across Britain...
..they're being joined by works that are rather more recent.
These date from the 1990s.
I chose them all because they had particular meaning to me.
They're all pieces of writing
or doodles that I could particularly remember.
And they come from very different stages in the process.
So some of it's on my very old manual typewriter.
Lots of hand-written stuff.
They just show what I was thinking.
This is a sketch of Hogwarts that JK Rowling sent to her publishers,
Bloomsbury, and it maps out all the key elements of Hogwarts
and she's given notes, as well.
My favourite bit about this one is
where she's drawn the squid that lives in the lake.
So this is one of mine.
So I don't feel quite so reverent about this one.
Professor Sprout is the herbologist.
Very lovable character.
I would say she's the most maternal, actually, or parental,
of the four Heads of House at Hogwarts.
So I drew this picture on December 30th, 1990.
And I can be very precise about when I drew this picture
because I was staying at a friend's house,
I'd been writing Potter for six months
and I stayed up when everyone else had gone to bed
because I was watching the movie The Man Who Would Be King.
And the reason I can be incredibly precise about
when I drew this is because...
at some point...
during the time I was watching that movie and drawing this picture,
my mother died 250 miles away
and I got the phone call the next day
to say that she had died.
So this obviously means a great deal to me, this picture.
But there was something quite extraordinary that I only realised
about 20 years later, so it seems very appropriate to say it now
in the context of this exhibition.
The Man Who Would Be King, for those who don't know,
is a story with Sean Connery and Michael Caine in it
and it's from an old Rudyard Kipling story.
And the Masonic symbol is very important in that movie.
And it was literally 20 years later
that I looked at the sign of the Deathly Hallows
and realised how similar they were.
The Deathly Hallows is comprised of the Elder Wand,
the Cloak of Invisibility and the Resurrection Stone.
And whoever possesses all three is said to be Master of Death.
When I saw the movie again and saw the Masonic symbol,
I sort of went cold all over and I thought...
..is that why the Hallows symbol is what it is?
And I've got a feeling that, on some deep subconscious level,
they are connected.
So I feel as though I sort of worked my way back over 20 years
to that night because the Potter series is hugely about loss...
And I've said this before, if my mother hadn't died,
I think the stories would be utterly different and not what they are.
Um... So, yeah.
So, this picture is very meaningful to me
on a lot of different levels.
"Harry was so close to the mirror now
"that his nose was nearly touching that of his reflection.
"'Mum?' he whispered.
"They just looked at him...
"..and slowly Harry looked into the faces
"of the other people in the mirror
"and saw other pairs of green eyes like his,
"other noses like his,
"even a little old man who looked as though he had Harry's knobbly knees.
"Harry was looking at his family for the first time in his life."
I meet people quite regularly who tell me
what Potter meant to them
and I can only say that even they have no idea what it meant to me.
So I wrote Potter during what I hope will turn out to have been
the most turbulent period of my life
and I put a huge amount, more than people will ever know,
of my own life and experiences into those books
and it's not that lots of people liked it,
it's the fact that it meant that much to a few people even
is more than enough for a writer. It's an amazing feeling.
"Hermione, however, clapped her hand to her forehead.
"'Harry, I think I've just understood something.
"'I've got to go to the library.'
"And she sprinted away up the stairs.
"'What does she understand?' said Harry, distractedly,
"still looking around trying to tell where the voice had come from.
"'Loads more than I do,' said Ron, shaking his head.
"'But why's she got to go to the library?'
"'Because that's what Hermione does,' said Ron, shrugging.
"'When in doubt, go to the library.'"