Movie Reviews

Harry Potter: 10 Weirdest Hogwarts Rules (& Why Redditors Think They Exist)

The upcoming Harry Potter video game, Hogwarts Legacy, is fulfilling fans’ dreams by allowing them to virtually go to Hogwarts, attend classes, and solve mysteries all for themselves. After years of reading the books and watching the movies, it’s impossible not to fall in love with the Wizarding World in school, and experiencing it firsthand is worth the wait.

Of course, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is far from perfect. The quirks of the Wizarding World are evident in the rules and regulations that govern the teachers and students, and a great deal of them make little sense. Students constantly seem in danger regardless, so it doesn’t seem like there’s a point. Fans have taken up the question and shared which Hogwarts rules seemed the weirdest and why they think they were established in the first place.

In Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry was devastated that he had been unable to get his uncle to give him permission to visit Hogsmeade Village, one of the most beautiful locations in Harry Potter, with his friend. McGonagall was adamant that no exception be made— no signed slip, no trips away from the school.

However, this rule seemed strange to Redditor AdamJadam, who pointed out that such permissions were unnecessary for things like playing a dangerous sport, going into the forbidden forest, or entering the Triwizard Tournament. Redditor Djweezy guessed this was because Hogsmeade is “off campus,” while the other dangerous activities are just an expectation for a Wizarding school.

Throughout Harry Potter, Harry learns of regulations for teachers, and Professor Umbridge introduces several new ones during her reign of terror. However, even before the toady witch took over, teachers were permitted to dole out dangerous or cruel punishments.

Detentions could range from cleaning out gross bedpans without magic to entering the Forbidden Forest. Hanging by their thumbs in the dungeon is seen as too much, but the acceptable methods aren’t much better. Redditor Klunsischnunsi theorized that this was due to Hogwarts being “stuck in time for centuries” but concludes that it is still “completely inappropriate.”

While “never tickle a sleeping dragon” isn’t technically a rule, it is the motto of Hogwarts School. “Draco Dormiens Nanguam Titillandus” is the phrase in Latin, and while it perfectly fits with the quirkiness of the school, it seems like an odd bit of regulation to fans.

Redditor PlayRevolutionary344 jokingly guessed that this rule was made “for Hagrid,” who might need reminding not to affectionately tickle a dragon. If that’s not the case, it’s possible that the Hogwarts Founders in Harry Potter were just telling the Wizarding World not to mess with them.

The restricted section in the Hogwarts library is full of topics students are not allowed to learn. This means that teachers can only reference these under certain circumstances, and like in the case of Slughorn and Tom Riddle, this can be easily abused.

While it’s understandable that types of Dark magic should be kept from kids’ minds, the Unforgivable Curses seem something every wizard should know about. Redditor OutsideOrder7538 guessed that this was only a Ministry regulation and that it “was impossible for Dumbledore to not know” that Moody was going to teach it, especially with “the whole school talking about it.”

In the Order of the Phoenix book, Ron tries to run up the stairs to talk to Hermione in her dormitory, and the staircase immediately turns into a slide and ejects him. He was baffled by this since Hermione had been in the boys’ dormitory several times before.

This was Redditor ZerealMobster’s pick for the weirdest Hogwarts rule, and user AdamJadam guessed that the reason was simply that “it’s a castle full of teenagers.” Hermione herself told Ron that the founders must have thought girls were just more trustworthy than boys.

The “no magic outside of school” rule presented a problem for Harry several times throughout the series. It wasn’t just a Hogwarts rule; it was a Ministry law for any witch or wizard under the age of 17. But, the law has several flaws since the Ministry can’t tell who used magic, only where. So children in wizarding homes could use it and never get caught.

Redditor Levicorpyutani added that the rule is strange since it means that students cannot practice magic during the summer holiday, saying that it was really just a “plot device” in the story. Knowing the Ministry, it could also be intended as a way to discriminate against Muggleborns since using magic in front of Muggles in Harry Potter is often used to pick on them.

Another strange Hogwarts rule states that magic is not permitted in the corridors. This is often ignored in Harry Potter, where the Golden Trio, even Hermione, use magic between classes on several occasions.

Daniboyi found this rule especially strange since, in a magical world, it’s almost impossible to restrict magic only to classes. They say that the rule was likely created because of “fights or some accidents,” but a rule against harming other students would be more than enough.

Having a secret common room would be exciting for new Hogwarts students, but as they begin to make friends in different houses, the rule forbidding entrance to other common rooms would become a bit of a pain.

“It’s very difficult for students of different houses to spend time together,” Redditor Edwardremus said, saying that this would be especially difficult for those who aren’t close with their housemates. This rule is likely to keep the common rooms from becoming overly packed with students, but it still seems exceptions might be made.

One rule that is repeated at the start of every term is that students at Hogwarts are not permitted to enter the Forbidden Forest, one of the most dangerous locations in Harry Potter. This is, of course, also ignored by Harry in every term. Still, it seems strange that a rule like that would be pressed so, yet no magical protections are set to actually keep students from entering.

Redditor Qwerty9814 wondered if rules like this are meant only to teach students “how to avoid detection” and therefore train them to “maintain the Statute of Secrecy regarding Muggles.” It could be the biggest lesson that students learn at Hogwarts is how to hide.

There were several points throughout Harry Potter where the house point system is revealed to be a bit of a sham. The first of these was in Philosopher’s Stone when Dumbledore brought Gryffindor from fourth to first place on the final evening of term— just because.

In addition to this flaw, Redditor Darth-JarJar-TheWise brought up the fact that “prefects can deduct and give points and punishments,” as is seen in Order of the Phoenix when both Ron and Draco tried to abuse this power. It’s possible that this was established to give students accountability for their own points, but it still makes the House Cup a pointless achievement.

NEXT: 10 Memes That Perfectly Sum Up Harry & Hermione’s Friendship In Harry Potter

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