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Word Origins

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A

Albus in Latin means, "white".

Albus in Latin means, “white”.

Abraxan: in Greek mythology the horse that pulled Helios’ chariot was named Abraxus

Accio: Latin, means to call or to summon

Aguamenti: comes from the Latin words ‘aqua’ (meaning water) and ‘mentis’ (meaning mind)

Alastor: Greek, was the god of revenge

Albus: Latin, means white

Alohomora: comes from the Hawaiian word ‘aloha’ (meaning hello/goodbye) and the Latin word ‘mora’ (meaning obstacle)

Anapneo: Greek, means to breathe

Aparecium: comes from the Latin word appareo (meaning to become visible)

Apparate: comes from the Latin word appareo (meaning to become visible)

Arabella: Latin, ‘ara’ means to alter and ‘bella’ means war

Aragog: meaning giant spider, comes from the word ‘arachnid’ (meaning spider) and the word ‘gog’ (meaning giant)

Argus: Greek, was a monster who had one hundred eyes

Arthur: English, means rock

Avada Kedavra: most likely taken from the old healing spell ‘abracadabra’, could be derived from the Arabic words ‘abra kadabra’ (meaning may the things be destroyed)

Avis: Latin, means bird

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B

Bagman: someone who bags money is referred to as a ‘bagman’

Basilisk: the king of serpents, comes from the Greek word ‘basiliskos’ (meaning ‘little king’ or ‘petty tyrant’)

Beauxbatons: French, means beautiful wands

Bellatrix: known as the female warrior, also a star in the constellation Orion

Boggart: comes from the Irish word ‘baggart’ (meaning a threat)

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C

Hermione using the Confundus Charm (Image: http://dragon-heartstring-core.tumblr.com/post/8240777098/confundo)

Hermione using the Confundus Charm (Image: http://dragon-heartstring-core.tumblr.com/post/8240777098/confundo)

Caput Draconis: Latin, means Dragon Head

Cedric: English, means war leader

Charlie: German, comes from Charles which means manly and strong

Cho Chang: comes from the Japanese word ‘cho’ (meaning butterfly) and the Chinese word ‘chang’ (meaning free)

Colin: Greek, comes from Nicholas which means youth

Colloportus: Latin, comes from the words ‘colligere’ (meaning to bind together) and portus (meaning door)

Confundus: comes from the Latin word ‘confundo’ (meaning to confuse)

Conjunctivitis: an inflammation of the mucous membrane that surrounds the surface of the eyeball (called the conjunctiva)

Cornelius: Latin, meaning horn-coloured

Crucio: Latin, means to torture

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D

Dementor, from the English word 'demented' (meaning tortured) and the Latin word 'dementio' (to go mad).

Dementor, from the English word ‘demented’ (meaning tortured) and the Latin word ‘dementio’ (to go mad).

Deletrius: comes from the word ‘delete’ (meaning to erase or remove)

Dementor: comes from the English word ‘demented’ (meaning tortured) and the Latin word ‘dementio’ (meaning to go mad)

Densaugeo: comes from the Latin words ‘den’ (meaning teeth) and ‘augeo’ (meaning to thicken)

Diagon Alley: comes from the word ‘diagonally’ and is said to be crooked

Diffindo: Latin, meaning to split

Disapparate: Latin, comes from the word ‘dispareo’ (meaning to disappear)

Dobby: comes from the name Robert, also means a fool

Draco: Latin, means dragon

Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus: Latin, translates to ‘never tickle a sleeping dragon’

Dumbledore: Old English, means bumblebee

Durmstrang: German, comes from the phrase ‘sturm und drang’ (meaning storm and stress)

Dudley: Old English, means a people’s field

Dursley: the name of a town near to where J.K. Rowling was born

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E

Engorgio: comes from the word engorge (meaning to fill to excess)

Ennervate: means to drain of energy

Erised: the word ‘desire’ spelled backwards

Evanesco: Latin, means to vanish or disappear

Expecto Patronum: Latin, the word ‘expecto’ means to await and the word ‘patronum’ means protection

Expelliarmus: Latin, means to expel a weapon

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F

Fawkes: Guy Fawkes was a conspirator in the Gunpowder Plot on November 5, 1605. It was an attempt to blow up the parliament in London. The anniversary is still celebrated by burning Fawkes in effigy and with fireworks.

Felix Felicis: Latin, means lucky

Fenrir: in Norse mythology there is the tale of a monster named Fenris who appeared as a giant wolf

Fidelius: Latin, means faithful

Filch: another word for ‘steal’

Finite Incantatem: Latin, literally means end of the spell

Firenze: is the Italian name for the city of Florence

Flitwick: a town in Bedfordshire, England, 50 miles north of London

Fleur Delacour: French, ‘fleur’ means flower and ‘delacour’ means of the court

Fluffy: a three-headed monster dog in Greek mythology

Fudge: means to falsify or make up, also a delicious sugary treat

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G

Grimmauld Place, literally "grim old place".

Grimmauld Place, literally “grim old place”.

Gilderoy: Irish, means devoted to the king

Ginny: Italian, short for Ginerva, means woman of the people

Grindelwald: the name of a popular hotel chain in Germany

Grimmauld Place: literally, “grim old place”.

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H

Harry: English, means army ruler

Hagrid: this was the name of the Keeper of Mount Olympus and Watcher of the animals

Hedwig: Teutonic, means battle, also the name of a German saint

Hermione: Greek, means well born

Homorphus: comes from the words ‘homo’ (meaning man) and ‘morphus’ (meaning to transform)

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I

Immobulus: comes from the word ‘immobilize’ (meaning to prevent motion)

Impedimenta: Latin, comes from the word impedimentum (meaning a hindrance)

Imperio: Latin, means to command or rule

Impervius: comes from the word ‘impervious’ (meaning incapable of being affected)

Incarcerous: comes from the word ‘incarcerate’ (meaning to lock in)

Incendio: Latin, comes from the word ‘incendo’ (meaning to set fire to)

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J

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K

Knockturn Alley, literally "nocturnally".

Knockturn Alley, literally “nocturnally”.

Knocturn Alley: comes from the word ‘nocturnally’Back to top

L

Levicorpus: comes from the Latin words ‘levo’ (meaning to raise) and ‘corpus’ (meaning body)

Liberacorpus: comes from the Latin words ‘libera’ (meaning to release or set free) and ‘corpus’ (meaning body)

Lily: Latin, a flower representing peace and purity

Lockhart: town in Australia near Wagga Wagga (“Compose a poem about my
defeat of the Wagga Wagga Werewolf ” – Gilderoy Lockhart)

Lucius: Latin, means bringer of the light

Ludo: Latin, means play

Lumos: comes from the Latin word ‘lumen’ (meaning light)

Luna: Latin, means moon

Lupin: comes from the word lupus from canis lupus which is the scientific name for a wolf

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M

Malfoy: comes from the French phrase ‘mal foi’ (meaning bad faith)

Maxime: French, means large

Minerva: the name of the Roman Goddess of wisdom

Mobilicorpus: comes from the Latin words ‘mobilis’ (meaning moveable) and ‘corpus’ (meaning body)

Moody: means in an unpleasant mood

Morsmordre: comes from the Latin word ‘mors’ (meaning death) and the French word ‘mordre’ (meaning to bite)

Muffliato: comes from the word muffle (meaning to dull sound)

Mundungus: a stinking tobacco

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N

Nagini: Sanskrit, means snake

Narcissa: a female form of the name Narcissus who was a man who fell in love with his reflection

Neville: French, means new town

Nicholas Flamel: the name of a real alchemist who apparently produced a real Philosopher’s Stone

Nimbus: Latin, means rain

Norris: the name of a character from a Jane Austen novel

Nox: Latin, means darkness

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O

Obliviate: comes from the Latin word ‘oblivio’ (meaning forgetfulness)

Orchideous: comes from the word ‘orchid’ which is a type of flower

Oppungo: Latin, means to attack

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P

Patronus in Latin is, "protector".

Patronus in Latin is, “protector”.

Padma: Sanskrit, means lotus

Parvati: the name of a Hindu Goddess

Patronus: Latin, means protector

Peeves: comes from the word ‘peeve’ which means to bug or annoy

Pensieve: comes from the French word ‘pen’ (meaning thought) and the word ‘sieve’ (used in separating un-dissolved substances in a suspension)

Petrificus Totalus: Latin, literally means totally petrify

Portus: com es from the Latin word ‘porta’ (meaning gate)

Prior Incantato: comes from the Latin word ‘priori’ (meaning former) and an adaptation of the word ‘incantation’ (meaning chant or spell)

Protego: Latin, means protect

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Q

Quibbler: comes from the word ‘quibble’ (meaning to fib)

Quietus: comes from the word ‘quiet’

Quidditch: a random word starting with the letter ‘q’ invented by J.K. Rowling

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R

Reducio: comes from the Latin word ‘reduco’ (meaning to reduce)

Reducto: comes from the Latin word ‘reduco’ (meaning to reduce)

Regulus: the name of a star in the Alpha Leo constellation

Remus: a name from Roman mythology, Remus was raised by a female wolf along with his brother Romulus who killed him

Reparo: Latin, means to restore

Riddikulus: an adaptation of the word ‘ridiculous’ (meaning silly or nonsensical)

Ronald: Hebrew, means the King’s advisor

Rosmerta: the Goddess of Fire in Celtic mythology

Rubeus: comes from the Latin word ‘ruber’ (meaning red)

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S

Salazar: the name of a fascist Portuguese dictator

Sectumsempra: comes from the Latin words ‘sectio’ (meaning to cut) and ‘semper’ (meaning always)

Severus: Latin, meaning mean and strict

Sibyll: means a prophet, in mythology the sibyls relayed their prophecies to the gods

Silencio: comes from the word ‘silent’

Sirius: the name of the brightest star in the heavens

Skeeter: a slang term for mosquito

Sonorous: Latin, means loud

Sprout: means to grow up from a seed in the ground

Snape: the name of a town in England

Stupefy: means to dull the senses

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T

Tarantallegra: comes from the words ‘tarantella’ (the name of a fast Italian dance) and ‘allegro’ (a fast and lively tempo)

Tergeo: Latin, means to scrub or clean

Toujours Pur: French, translates to always pure

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U

Umbridge: possibly comes from the word ‘umbra’ which means shadow

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V

Veritaserum: comes from the Latin word ‘veritas’ (meaning truth) and the word ‘serum’ (meaning potion)

Voldemort: French, means fly from death

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W

Weasley: meaning to resemble a weasel

Wingardium Leviosa: comes from the Latin root ‘levo’ (meaning to lift or raise)

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X

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Y

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Z

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