1940s

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In this decade...

  • Hogwarts is led by Headmaster Armando Dippet. Albus Dumbledore teaches Transfiguration and Horace Slughorn teaches Potions; presumably, they are the Heads of Gryffindor and Slytherin. Galatea Merrythought has held the post of Defence Against the Dark Arts professor for almost fifty years until she retires in 1945. Students in this decade include:
    • Around 1936 to 1943 (give or take a couple of years): Minerva McGonagall in Gryffindor (JKRW, ABC).<ref>Dates concering Minerva's age should be taken with a grain of salt. In an interview in 2000, Rowling stated that McGonagall was "a sprightly seventy years old" (ABC). At that time, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which ends in the summer of 1995, had been published. If we take Rowling's statement literally and assume that she was speaking of McGonagall's age at the end of book four, that means that she is seventy in the summer of 1995, and will be turning seventy-one on October 4 (her birthday was celebrated on jkrowling.com). This would make her birth year 1924; therefore, she is eleven in September 1936. However, it is much more likely that Rowling meant that McGonagall was around seventy instead of speaking of her exact age. We should also not forget that in the same interview, she stated that Dumbledore was 150, when in fact he was more than thirty years younger (his birth year is 1881, WM). Also, Rowling has since said that by 2017, McGonagall is no longer Headmistress of Hogwarts because she "was really getting on a bit" (MSNBC). If we are going with the assumption that she was born in the 1920s, McGonagall would be in her nineties then, which is not that old for a witch. That means it is possible that McGonagall was born earlier.</ref>
    • 1938 to 1945: Tom Marvolo Riddle in Slytherin (PS5, HBP17). He shows no outward signs of cruelty or arrogance at school. A handsome and talented orphan, he becomes a favourite with the staff, except for Dumbledore, who distrusts him. Tom collects a group of followers around him that probably includes Lestrange, Sr. and Avery, Sr. Some of them become the first Death Eaters after leaving school. He tries to find evidence that his ancestors were wizards. After learning that his father was a Muggle at some point before June 1942, he sheds the name "Tom Riddle" and creates the pseudonym "Lord Voldemort", which he first uses with his circle of followers. A number of nasty incidents occur during his school years (including the opening of the Chamber of Secrets in 1943), but none can be linked back to him or his group (HBP17).
    • 1940 to 1943: Rubeus Hagrid in Gryffindor (YC). He is not particularly talented at magic (GF24). According to Tom Riddle, he has a reputation for getting into trouble due to his interest in dangerous beasts (CS17). At some point, he illegally acquires an Acromantula egg and raises the spider Aragog in a school cupboard. Tom Riddle finds out about Aragog and frames Hagrid for the murder of Myrtle (CS17). Hagrid, who has no family, is thrown out of school; Dumbledore secures him a post as gamekeeper on the Hogwarts grounds (GF24).
    • Until 1943: Myrtle in Ravenclaw. She is probably a few years younger than Tom. In 1943, she is killed by Salazar Slytherin's Basilisk and becomes a ghost. She spends the next years haunting her classmate Olive Hornby, who used to tease Myrtle about her looks (CS16).


1940

Fabius Watkins, legendary Captain and Chaser of the Montrose Magpies, is born (WM).

The broomstick manufacturers Ellerby and Spudmore from the Black Forest release the Tinderblast model. Though hardwearing, the Tinderblast is not a rival for the Cleansweep and Comet models that dominate the racing broom market because it lacks speed (QA9).

January 22:

September 1:

October 19:

1941

April 14:

May 14:

At some point between September 1941 and June 1942:

  • Mr. Hagrid, Rubeus Hagrid's father, dies during his son's second year at Hogwarts (GF23, GF24).<ref name=Hagrid>Hagrid says to Madame Maxime that his father died just after he started school (GF23), which makes it more likely that his father died at the beginning of his second year in 1941.</ref>

1942

At some point between September 1941 and June 1942:

  • Mr. Hagrid, Rubeus Hagrid's father, dies during his son's second year at Hogwarts (GF23, GF24).<ref name=Hagrid>Hagrid says to Madame Maxime that his father died just after he started school (G23), which makes it more likely that his father died at the beginning of his second year in 1941.</ref>

1943

1944

1945

Albus Dumbledore defeats the Dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald, his former best friend. He takes the Elder Wand from Gellert and locks him in his own prison, Nurmengard (PS6, DH18, DH25).

1946

1947

1948

1949

Footnotes

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