Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Question: Has it ever been explained what would have happened if the Sorting Hat couldn't decide what students should be placed into what house?

Answer: If the Sorting Hat experienced a "Hatstall" where, after a certain amount of time passes, it was unable to decide where to place a student based on their being suited to more than one House, then the student's personal preference would be considered. There were a handful of "hatstalls" over the centuries, but the Sorting Hat eventually placed the students.

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From the Harry Potter "Wizarding World" web site. The supplemental material was written by J.K. Rowling and originally published on "Pottermore." According to Rowling, Minerva McGonagall was a Hatstall student. The Sorting Hat had difficulty placing her between either Gryffindor or Ravenclaw, finally settling on Gryffindor.

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The term Hatstall was created by JK Rowling. It can be found here: https://www.wizardingworld.com/writing-by-jk-rowling/hatstall.

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Question: When Professor McGonagall acquires a Nimbus 2000 for Harry, that's pretty much the state-of-the-art broom, and very expensive (given no-one else has apparently got one, and only the wealthy Malfoys can afford the next-gen 2001's in the second film). It seems unlikely for a teacher, or a school, to buy an untried first year a state-of-the-art broom when the school is generally muddling along with old cast-offs that he could have used. Who paid for Harry's Nimbus 2000?

Answer: Prof. McGonagall personally bought the Nimbus 2000 as an anonymous gift for Harry, though he knew it was from her. The Nimbus 2000 may have been too pricey for Hogwarts to buy for all four Quidditch teams, but it was not beyond what most wizard families could afford for their own children. Lucius Malfoy was rich and could afford to buy the entire Slytherin Quidditch team the more expensive brooms, which he provided as a bribe for Draco being made the new Seeker. Up until then, all teams used school brooms, though some individual players may have had their own. It's unclear what the rules are about what brooms can or cannot be used.

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Question: When Gryffindor wins the house cup Hermione has a bandage on her hand. Why did she need it? If it's about the Devil's Snare thing she would have been rubbing it a lot longer.


Answer: It's there to help her wounds from the whole ordeal. You say she would have rubbed her hand for longer but not really. In the heat of the moment she's probably running on adrenaline and just blocks the pain out.

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Answer: When she falls through the devil's snare, there is a considerable drop so she could have landed awkwardly. She also has hold of a vine when she falls through so may have caught her hand that way.

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Question: If Harry's relatives hate him, then why are they against him going to Hogwarts to study magic? Why wouldn't they be excited to be rid of him most of the time?


Answer: Because they know of his wizard heritage and they hate it. They think he and his parents were freaks.


Good answer, but I'd add they also knew it was something Harry would very much want, and they would always deny him simply to be as mean-spirited as possible.

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Not to mention one of Vernon and Petunia's overriding motivations is to appear normal to their neighbors, and the more magic Harry knows, the less likely they are to achieve that. It could presumably also be dangerous for them, as future books/movies confirm.

1. They were constantly being barraged with letters from Hogwarts in an increasingly disruptive manner. Eventually, this would be noticed as something weird by their neighbors, which is something they REALLY don't want: anyone to know about Petunia's magical relations. 2. They were flat out threatened by Hagrid and terrified on both him and Dumbledore Better to let him go there then have to spend their entire lives on the run without it even working.


They were against it long before the barrage of letters or Hagrid showing up. They knew about the school, Petunia's sister went there and she told Vernon. They don't want to seem weird to the neighbors in general, they aren't afraid people around them will think they have a wizard in their family because nobody believes in wizards.


Question: During flight class, when we see Hermione's broom rolling just above the ground, there is something black in front of the broom. I don't mean Hermione's sleeve. What is it?

Answer: It is Harry's shoe. He is standing right beside Hermione.

Answer: I don't think you mean this but you can see the shoe of the person standing next to her. If you mean on the bottom side of the screen then you can see Hermione (or whoever is standing there) kick the broom to make it move I think. But it's not causing all the movement of the broom though, but there is definite contact with a foot. You can't see the top of the broom (I'd say that's the front BTW).


The shoe is what I meant thanks. Whose shoe is it?

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone mistake picture

Visible crew/equipment: At the Quidditch match, after Hermione sets Snape's cloak on fire and someone shouts, "Fire! You're on fire!" there is a close-up of Harry with his hands gripping the Nimbus 2000. In this shot, the wire rods which are attached/taped to the broomstick, near Harry's fingers, that lead under both of his red sleeves, are entirely visible. (01:21:35)

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More mistakes in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Hermione Granger: I'm going to bed, before either of you come up with another clever idea to get us killed, or worse, expelled.
Ronald Weasley: [to Harry.] She needs to sort out her priorities.

More quotes from Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Trivia: For anyone who hasn't read the book: The inscription on top of the Mirror of Erised says "erised stra ehru oyt ube cafru oyt on wohsi". If you read the inscription backwards it says "I show not your face but your heart's desire".

More trivia for Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

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