Ever wonder about the families of J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World? When talking about Harry Potter and his cohorts, we’re dealing with a much smaller population than that in the world at large. So many young wizards remain somewhat sheltered at school all year, too. How do they meet new mates and find true love without accidentally mixing with family? The short answer: They don’t. Just like the British Royal Family, there’s a very good chance that many people might end up marrying a third or fourth cousin, especially if they intend to stay with the outdated and rather exclusive view of only marrying “purebloods.” That’s probably why, especially in the case of certain Slytherin families, there’s a ton of back and forth mixing between a certain few families — namely the members of the Sacred Twenty-Eight. Let’s just say the Harry Potter family tree gets a little twisty.
Now you’re dying for more details, right? Well, the Sacred Twenty-Eight is the name given to the 28 families that are the “purest,” or the least mixed with muggles. They’re, in essence, the most magical names (at least if you ask them). Of course, in order to keep them that way, they’ve had to stay in close contact. To help you visualize the branches, we’re going to break down the Harry Potter family tree. We’re including the lineage of other famous families in the Wizarding World as well, such as the Weasleys and the Malfoys.
About the Harry Potter Family Tree
So, what do these family trees look like? For starters, with so many crossovers, even just a look at key Hogwarts’ alums can lead to something that looks less like a single tree and more like the Forbidden Forest. We took a deep dive into Harry Potter symbols and lore to attempt to sort it out for you. A ton of information came straight from Rowling herself. Even after the release of her Harry Potter series, she’s continued to answer questions and add backstory to help out curious fans.
In other cases, people have done their best to fill in the blanks where families have scrubbed names from their tree (like the Blacks), or where Rowling just hasn’t given all the deets. Here’s a look at some of the families you’re more familiar with.
The Harry Potter/Black Family Tree
Excepting Harry, the Potters have all lived a relatively unremarkable existence. According to Rowling, two Potters made it to the Wizengamot, but most Potters chose to stay in their hometown (which you may remember visiting during Harry’s last few years at Hogwarts). Before Harry was born, the Potters’ biggest claim to fame was that various members had created several popular potions, including Skele-gro and Pepperup Potion. Even their acquisition of the Invisibility Cloak can’t be tagged entirely to their family.
One of the oldest known Potters was the quirky 12th-century wizard, Linfred of Stinchcombe — aka “The Potterer,” the founding patriarch of the Potter family. His son Hardwin married Iolanthe Peverell, the granddaughter of Ignotus Peverell. With no other older or more legitimate male heirs, Ignotus’ Invisibility Cloak was passed to Iolanthe and, from there, continued to be passed along down the line to various Potter heirs. That’s how it ended up in James’ possession and, eventually, in Harry’s.
It’s also probably important to know that because of Harry and Ginny’s marriage, the Potters have now married into the Sacred 28.
Why did Harry Potter name his daughter after Luna?
J.K. Rowling revealed that Lily Luna was named after Luna Lovegood because Harry considered her a very good friend (and nothing more). Despite fanfiction and theories of a hidden romance between Luna and Harry, there is no tea — just a good ole platonic friendship. In the books, Harry only has two crushes — Cho Chang and Ginny Weasley.
The Weasley Family Tree
Speaking of Ginny…
While the Weasleys are often looked down upon because of their storied fascination with muggles, they’re listed among the Sacred Twenty-Eight. The Weasleys actually have a distant connection to the Blacks, too. Remember Arthur and Molly, the red-headed parental units to those troublesome Weasley kids? Both parents have connections to the Black family. Most notably, Arthur’s mother Cedrella’s maiden name was Black. She would have been a distant cousin to Sirius. Of course, when she married Septimus Weasley, her name was burnt from the family tree.
Meanwhile, Molly’s Aunt Lucretia was also a Black before she married into the Prewitt family. Seem confusing? Like we said: It’s a bit of a forest rather than one single family tree. The branches all grow together eventually! Then, of course, it gets even more convoluted when you consider all of Molly and Arthur’s children and their various relationships.
Malfoy, Black, and LeStrange Family Trees
Things really become convoluted when you start looking at the intertwining family trees that belong to the Malfoy, Black, and LeStrange families. It makes sense. As we know, these three families — all part of the Sacred Twenty-Eight — are known for their hatred for muggles and those who befriend or comingle with them (whom they refer to as “mudbloods”).
Despite their best efforts to keep things “pure,” however, they had a fair share of outliers within each family who struck out on their own. For instance, Bellatrix LeStrange (nee Black) was both an aunt to Tonks and a distant cousin to Neville Longbottom. Tonk’s mother, Andromeda, was sister to Bellatrix. The third sister in that family group? None other than Narcissa Malfoy, Draco’s mother. All three were cousins to Sirius. But a look at the Black family’s wallpaper will show both Andromeda and Sirius burnt from the family because of their various relations with muggles.
Thanks to The Cursed Child, we already know a bit of what lies ahead for these ever-growing family trees. Most notably, Ron and Hermione’s daughter, Rose, might end up with Draco’s son, Scorpius. Fans especially want this to be true and there are whole fanfics revolving around the idea. Which begs the question, all these years later: Did you get your dream ‘ship from the Harry Potter ending? Honestly, we wanted Harry and Luna to end up together. But, we can live with the truth.