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Since the release of the final Harry Potter book in 2007 and The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in 2011, fans have thought of multiple theories regarding the story, the characters, and even another popular franchise. While some ideas are slightly far-fetched, others are probable and make sense when broken down.

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Whether confirmed, denied, or ignored by the author, theories spark viewers’ imaginations and give more depth to a beloved story. According to some, every small detail in Harry Potter is deliberate, hinting at backstories and plot lines that weren’t explicitly shown.

Harry and Sirius in the Harry Potter film series

Harry develops a very close relationship with his wisecracking godfather, Sirius Black. In Order of the Phoenix, Harry sees a family tree painted on a wall in the House of Black. On it, fans quickly spot two family members who could prove the theory that Harry and Sirius are blood relatives.

According to the Black family tree, Dorea Black married Charlus Potter, and the two had an unnamed son. Many fans have theorized that Dorea and Charlus are James Potter’s grandparents, making Potter and Sirius related. If this theory is true, it could explain why Harry feels so drawn to his godfather. In addition, all pureblood families in the wizarding world are likely to intersect at some point, so it isn’t far-fetched.

9 Neville Has The Wrong Wand

Neville Longbottom next to Harry and Ron

A wand chooses the wizard in the world of Harry Potter, not the other way around. This could explain why Neville Longbottom seems clumsy and uncoordinated through the first few years of school, often messing up potions and spells.

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Neville uses his father’s wand to honor him, feeling pressure from his grandmother to live up to Frank’s legacy. After the wand breaks, Neville finds his perfect wand and his skills instantly improve, allowing him to defend himself against Death Eaters. Neville isn’t a lousy wizard, he just needs the right tools.

8 Bill And Percy Weasley Use Time-Turners

Percy Weasley In Harry Potter

This theory is relatively new and suggests that Bill and Percy Weasley and Barty Crouch Jr. use time-turners before Hermione. As the only students to have passed 12 O.W.L.S., the boys would need a time turner or a miracle to handle the workload during their fifth year.

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Hermione, the brightest witch of her age with a long list of accomplishments, has difficulty taking and passing 11 O.W.L.S. on her own, so it’s nearly impossible to achieve 12. However, as Hogwarts approves of Hermione using the magical time-turner, it’s not difficult to imagine the school would allow other bright and esteemed students to use it.

7 Harry Imagines The Whole Story

Harry Potter in the cupboard under the stairs

The “it was all a dream” twist is one of the oldest tricks in storytelling, so it’s not surprising that this theory has become popular with Harry Potter fans. Many have theorized that while Harry was living under the stairs at the Dursleys’ house, he grows increasingly sad, lonely, and hungry in that small cupboard.

To escape the neglect he suffers, fans think that Harry makes himself the protagonist of the elaborate and magical world he creates in his mind. While it might not be impossible, it’s an extremely sad theory that many fans hope is never confirmed.

6 Neville Is The Chosen One, Not Harry

Neville Longbottom in the Deathly Hallows Part 2

One theory suggests that Harry Potter isn’t the Chosen One, but Voldemort had just picked the wrong child to attack. The prophecy made by Sybill Trelawney when Harry and Neville were babies states that a child born at the end of the seventh month will destroy the Dark Lord.

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Voldemort assumes it’s Harry and goes after the Potter family. However, Neville was also born at the end of July. Neville proves multiple times that he’s capable of being the Chosen One, and the story would’ve turned out very differently if Voldemort had attacked Neville.

5 Lily Potter Owned Crookshanks First

Crookshanks from Harry Potter

Many theories have evolved surrounding Hermione’s cat, Crookshanks. One of the most popular ideas is that Harry’s mom was his first owner. As most fans know, the Potters owned a cat that disappeared when Voldemort killed James and Lily. Some believe Crookshanks ran from the Potters’ home and was eventually adopted by Hermione over a decade later.

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This theory could explain Crookshanks’ overwhelming hatred for Scabbers, or Peter Pettigrew, as he would’ve known Peter before he betrayed the Potters. Crookshanks is an intelligent animal who could likely see right through Peter’s Animagus disguise and wants to avenge his owners.

4 The Dursleys Don’t Hate Harry

The Dursleys - Harry Potter's uncle, cousin, and aunt in the Harry Potter film series

Horcruxes affect the mood of those around them, as shown by Ron and Harry’s irritable nature while hiding the locket in The Deathly Hallows: Part 1. Harry later learns he’s a Horcrux, as part of Voldemort’s soul went into his own when the Dark Lord killed his parents.

The theory states that the awful and abusive Dursleys might not hate Harry because of who he is. Instead, Harry being a Horcrux inadvertently changes their moods. Although it’s no excuse for the treatment Harry receives, this theory could at least explain why the Dursleys act so terribly and how they might not be all bad.

3 Ginny Tricks Harry With A Love Potion

Ginny tends to Harry's wounds in the Half-Blood Prince

Ginny Weasley develops a crush on Harry when she first sees him at the train station. This crush grows over the years, despite Harry only thinking of Ginny as Ron’s little sister. However, his feelings abruptly change in his sixth year.

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Ginny and Harry’s relationship seems to come out of nowhere in The Half-Blood Prince. Fans remember how she and Hermione look at love potions in Fred and George’s joke shop, leading to the theory that Ginny used a love potion on Harry. Many people think the potion should be illegal, but it’s not. Fans believe that Ginny wanted to be with Harry so badly that she used Amortentia to get Harry to fall in love with her.

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2 George Weasley Opens A Candy Factory

George Weasley is theorized to be Willy Wonka

The theory of George Weasley and the Chocolate Factory seems odd. When broken down, though, it does make sense. After George loses his twin brother Fred in the Battle of Hogwarts, many believe that he never recovers. This theory suggests that George turns back time to create a new life for himself as Roald Dahl’s beloved Willy Wonka.

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George has a deep knowledge of candy due to his experience with Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes, and he and Wonka even have some of the same ideas, like candies that create ailments. Most of Wonka’s inventions seem impossible in the Muggle world unless he uses magic, which George has. Although unlikely, it’s a fascinating idea.

1 The Tale Of The Three Brothers Repeats Itself

Harry Potter and Voldemort, Harry Potter Franchise

In The Deathly Hallows, Harry and his friends learn about The Tale of the Three Brothers, a fairytale about three brothers who try to escape Death. Many fans believe this story comes to fruition through the Harry Potter characters. The oldest brother, like Voldemort, boasts about his invulnerability from the Elder Wand but dies because of his ego. The middle brother attempts to bring his love back from the dead with the Philosopher’s Stone but ends up taking his own life to be with her, much like Snape did for Lily.

The youngest brother uses the Invisibility Cloak to hide from Death but eventually accepts his fate and gives the cloak to his son. This draws parallels to Harry, who frequently uses his father’s Invisibility Cloak. Also, Harry’s acceptance of death is what saves his life in the forest before the final duel. The theory also suggests that Dumbledore represents Death, as he plays a vital role in Voldemort and Snape’s demises, helps Harry at King’s Cross, and gives him the Invisibility Cloak years prior. The theory is so well-thought-out that even J.K Rowling deemed it her favorite.

NEXT: 7 Popular Harry Potter Fan Theories That Were Debunked

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