Harry Potter

What Does It Mean To Be A Gryffindor?

Harry Potter, Gryffindor

Gryffindor is one of the most recognisable school houses in the Harry Potter/Wizarding World franchise. Founded by Hogwarts co-founder Godric Gryffindor, it is meant to be for the brave. However, not everyone who is sorted in Gryffindor deserves to be there.

Godric Gryffindor, like Rowena Ravenclaw and Salazar Slytherin, had specific criteria for entering his house. Potential sorties had to have the following attributes:

  • Bravery
  • Boldness
  • Daring
  • Nerve
  • Courage
  • Determination

When you think of famous Gryffindors such as Harry Potter, Albus Dumbledore and Minerva McGonagall, you know of their bravery because of their actions. However, one student should have been placed in Slytherin as he did not show the attributes.

Peter Pettigrew – Wrongly Sorted

The student we speak of is Peter Pettigrew, a Gryffindor who was friends with James Potter, Sirius Black and Remus Lupin. Wormtail, as Pettigrew was known to his friends, betrayed James and his wife Lily, handing over their location to Lord Voldemort, who then proceeded to kill them and attempted to do the same to their infant son, Harry.

Years later, Pettigrew was found alive after it was thought Sirius, James’ best friend and Harry’s godfather, had killed him. But unfortunately, he also framed Black for the murder of 12 muggles, which Sirius was arrested for and thrown in Azkaban, the famed wizarding prison.

Most Gryffindors don’t stab their friends in the back. Pettigrew escaped, and for years, he hid in his Animagus form and was “adopted” by the Weasley family. However, things came undone when someone questioned how a rat, meant to live for up to 3 years, could be handed from the third eldest child Percy to the second-youngest, Ron and live for 12 years.

Almost Not A Gryffindor – Hermione Granger

One of the most famous female Gryffindors is Hermione Granger, the brightest witch of her age. However, when she was sorted, she almost ended up in Ravenclaw before the Sorting Hat changed its mind.

The Hat was also in a stalemate with Harry and almost sorted him into Slytherin before Potter begged it not to, and this is how he ended up in Gryffindor.

Those Who Should Have Been Sorted Into Gryffindor, But Weren’t

In-universe, it was a surprise when Sirius started school that he was sorted into Gryffindor. His entire family, for generations, were sorted into Slytherin. He broke the cycle, which saw him ostracised. However, he wasn’t the only person in his family to be cut off.

Andromeda Tonks (née Black)

His cousin, Andromeda, was sorted into Slytherin house. But, unlike her sisters, Bellatrix and Narcissa, she didn’t follow the dark wizard marriage route. Bella became a Death Eater and the most devoted of Voldemort’s followers, and she married a dark wizard. Narcissa married a Death Eater.

Andromeda was a kind woman who should have been sorted into Gryffindor with Sirius. The only reason she wasn’t was because of who her family was. In her few appearances in Deathly Hallows, she didn’t come across as ambitious, a trait for Slytherin.

Scorpius Malfoy And Albus Potter

Another two examples we have of this are Scorpius Malfoy and Albus Potter. Scorpius was raised by his parents, Draco, who used to be Harry’s school bully and Astoria, who didn’t believe in the nonsense of blood purity, to respect people. He was only sorted into Slytherin because his family has a long history in the house. Scorpus, unlike Draco, wasn’t born to mistreat people and treat them as inferior because of their blood status.

Albus, however, suffered the fate his father almost had. His primary fear, sparked by his older brother James, was being sorted into Slytherin. A couple of years older, James had been sorted into Gryffindor like their parents before them. He teased his brother with something terrible to the point their mother, Ginny, had to tell him to stop as they walked to Platform 9 3/4.

Before leaving for school, Albus pulled his dad aside and asked what would happen if he were sorted into Slytherin. Harry explained that one of his namesakes, Severus Snape, had been a Slytherin and was one of the bravest people he’d ever known. Finally, he explains that the Hat does consider the wearer’s thoughts, revealing that he’d convinced it to sort him into Gryffindor.

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About Author

C.J. Hawkings has written for the now-defunct Entertainment website, Movie Pilot and the still functioning WhatCulture and ScreenRant. She prides herself as a truth seeker and will do (almost) anything for coffee or Coke No Sugar. Oh! And food!