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All the Historical References In Harry Potter

Updated 19 Apr 2019 674.1k views19 items

Many have fallen in love with the Harry Potter series and the fantastical wizarding world created by JK Rowling. Harry Potter's history is rich with detailed fiction – from the idea of a Horcrux to the intensely terrifying presence of Dementors. It's got decades of rules and words and customs that even hardcore fans struggle to keep straight. However, while the stories themselves are fictional, real world inspiration lies behind the series. There are tons of Harry Potter references based on real life events, myths, or traditions. 

JK Rowling has a knack for foreshadowing what's going to happen in Harry Potter with historical references. From Britain's biggest prison break to the bombings of the Irish Republican Army, the real world events in Harry Potter grant the books a rich, intelligent context. Readers will enjoy picking apart fact vs. truth in the books, especially those who paid attention in history classes in high school and college. The true events alluded to in the books and movies make the wizarding world – with all its spells and sorcerer's stones -- seem that much more real. 

From Nazis to Catholic saints, here are some historical references you may have missed in Harry Potter (but don't even get us started on the The Fantastic Beasts universe).

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