What the Forbidden Forest Taught us About the Characters


Throughout the Harry Potter series, characters time and time again encountered the Forbidden Forest and the creatures lurking in it. Their reactions, it turns out, spoke volumes about their characters.

The Forbidden Forest was forbidden territory for a reason. While not every creature in the forrest was harmful, there were some that were, and when faced with that fear, our favorite characters showed their true colors, and who they really were inside.

Rubeus Hagrid

As the Keeper of Keys and Grounds, and later, Professor of Care of Magical Creatures, Hagrid’s heart was open to the creatures in the forest, which included his brother Grawp, and his childhood best friend, arachnid Aragog. He may have been half-giant, but his heart was larger than any full giants’ heart. There was only room for love, and acceptance – more often than not, Hagrid found comfort and friendship in creatures that he didn’t find in humans and wizards. After all, as the son of a giantess, he’s learned not to judge based on appearance.

He has the purest of hearts, and must be protected at every and all costs.

Ron Weasley

Listen, no one has ever pretended that Ron was the bravest soul in the books – not even Ron himself. He was deathly afraid of spiders, Aragog in particular, and adventure mostly gave Ron anxiety. And yet, that was the very thing about Ron that made him brave – he knew he wasn’t brave, he didn’t pretend to be, but still, he faced those fears and was always, always faithfully at his friends’ sides. In Chamber of Secrets, with Hermione petrified and the fate of the school hanging in the balance, Ron swallows his fear and follows Harry and the spiders into the Forbidden Forest, knowing it was the way to find answers.

Because that was who Ron was at his very core – the very best kind of friend.

Hermione Granger

Hermione is and always was logical, calculated and pragmatic. Passionate, too, but always level headed in the face of danger, and thinking steps ahead of her counterparts. It’s what saved her and her friends countless times – maybe even the Wizarding World. When Umbridge is preparing to torture Harry for information about Dumbledore’s Army using the Cruciatus Curse in Order of the Phoenix, Hermione thinks on her feet and concocts a story about a hidden weapon in the Forbidden Forest – leading herself, Harry and Umbridge into the forest. She counts on the fact that Umbridge will be, well, herself, and it works out – she spews hateful speech about the centaurs surrounding them, and is consequently dragged off by them.

Maybe she was scared, maybe she wasn’t – regardless, Hermione Granger almost never let that show. She was collected. She was quick. It’s part of what made her so resourceful, and a key player in saving the world.

Harry Potter

Harry, in a way, is a combination of them all. He has a healthy apprehension of the unknown, including what lurks in the forest beyond, but he is also curious and while maybe trusting is not the best word to use, he’s brave enough to risk situations. Sometimes he ran into danger in the forest – other times, the forest and its creatures protected him.

And then, there was the time he nearly died in that very forest, and it almost felt as if had all come full circle. It wasn’t the creatures of the forest that were the real threat that time – it was Voldemort. And as he approaches his death, sacrificing himself, he walks with the ghosts of his parents, of Sirius and Remus, and it almost feels like home, a last bit of comfort in his final moments.

They aren’t, of course, his final moments. But there was a certain comfort Harry found in the forest, a certain bravery he had, subtle as it may have been, that was so very Harry.

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How would you react to the Forbidden Forest?