Magals alert, it will be 25 years since Harry Potter cast his spell on our lives.
J.K. Rowling’s 1997 novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, about a boy wizard and his adventures at Hogwarts, was initially just a small print run as publisher Bloomsbury wasn’t expecting its success.
JK went on to write six more books in the series, which together have sold over 500 million copies worldwide.
Add to that the eight films, a play, a studio tour and a theme park.
To celebrate the anniversary, try our magic quiz, the answers below, learn fun facts about the first book and see what was happening in the UK when it was released.
- Which character said, “Harry – a wizard”?
- What is the name of the magic bank in Diagon Alley?
- What book is on the first year reading list that helps students learn about magical beings and their habitats?
- Who is the first Hogwarts student Harry meets, inside Madam Malkin’s all-occasion gown?
- What is the name/model of Harry Potter’s first broom?
- What did Hagrid take from Gringotts’ Vault 713? This object can be used to harness eternal life.
- What date and time does the Hogwarts Express leave from?
- What is the Hogwarts school motto?
- Who is the ghost of the house for Gryffindor?
- What is the house code for Slytherin?
- What are the colors of the Ravenclaw’s house?
- Who is the founder of House Hufflepuff?
- What is the name of the daily newspaper that contains the latest witch news?
- What subject is Professor McGonagall studying?
- Solve NOBLE VOLT LONGTIME anagrams to reveal the name of a Hogwarts student.
- Ron Weasley has five brothers and one sister. Can you name them all?
- What subject does Professor Quirrell study?
- What are the names of the caretaker of Hogwarts and his cat?
- At Quidditch Stadium, how many goal posts are there in total?
- Which spell can lift things? (Hint: This spell is used in the magic class.)
- What are the four positions on the Quidditch team?
- What magical creature attacks Hermione in the toilets on Halloween?
- In Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, who conveys the commentary on the Quidditch matches at Hogwarts?
- Solve RAVE SUSPENSE anagrams to reveal the name of the Hogwarts professor.
- What is the name of Harry Potter’s pet owl?
- Rubius Hagrid
- The Magical Bank of Gringotts
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander
- Draco Malfoy
- nimbus 2000
- Philosopher’s Stone
- September 1 at 11 a.m., from platform 9¾ at King’s Cross Station
- Don’t tickle a sleeping dragon
- Nick is almost decapitated
- a snake
- blue and bronze
- Helga Hufflepuff
- the daily prophet
- Neville Longbottom
- Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred, George and Jenny
- Defense against the dark arts
- Fish and Mrs. Norris
- Wingardium liviosa
- A guard, a chaser, a beater, and a seeker
- mountain elf
- Lee Jordan
- Severus Snape
Cool facts and where to find them
Here we bring you some amazing facts about Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. . .
- The book, the first by J.K. Rowling, contains 77,674 words.
- There are 1,1100.086 words in the entire Harry Potter series.
- The initial print run of the book, published by Bloomsbury in 1997, numbered only 500 copies.
- Harry Potter’s name appears 29 times in the main text of the first novel, while his opponent Voldemort appears more than 38 times.
- Harry didn’t say anything in the first chapter, The Boy Who Lived, because he’s just a kid. His first word comes into the Philosopher’s Stone in chapter two, Vanishing Glass, and it’s “almost.”
- The first teacher Harry meets in Hogwarts is Professor McGonagall when he attends Hogwarts Of Witchcraft And Wizardry in class seven, Sorting Hat.
- Harry and Ron first met on page 99 between podiums nine and ten at Kings Cross.
- Harry meets Hermione for the first time on page 112 while they are traveling on the Hogwarts Express.
- In foreign language editions of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, the names of the four houses change. For example, Gryffindor becomes Grifondoro (Italian), Garuddwaar (Indian), Nevelvir (Czech), and Llereurol (Wales).
- In early manuscript drafts, Draco Malfoy’s nickname was clever, Spinks and Spongin.
- Voldemort’s name comes from French words meaning “journey of death.”
- J.K. Rowling has said that Chapter 12, The Mirror of Erised, is her favorite in the book and one of her darlings from the entire series.
Other pivotal events in 1997
- Tony Blair, then 43, became the youngest prime minister since Robert Jenkinson in 1812 after Labor won the general election in May.
- The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on November 20.
- The new 50p coin was introduced on September 1.
- Titanic was the biggest movie of the year.
- Midsomer Murders and Teletubbies were first broadcast on terrestrial television in the UK.
- American director boyband Hanson’s MmmBop was at number one on the UK singles chart on the day the book was published.
- Dolly the Sheep, the first successfully cloned mammal, was born on July 5, 1996, but it wasn’t announced to the world until seven months later.
- The Spice Girls took first place at Christmas in the UK with quite a lot.
- Princess Diana, Princess of Wales, died in a car accident in Paris on August 31, and a week-long period of mourning ensued.
- The UK won the Eurovision Song Contest with Katrina and the Waves Love Shine A Light – and we’ve failed to win it again since.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone: 25th Anniversary Edition, by J.K. Rowling (Bloomsbury), available now, £16.99.