Harry Potter: A History of Magic exhibition online

A series of enchanting exhibits from the British Library’s Harry Potter: A History of Magic exhibition is now available for families to enjoy online via Google Arts and Culture.

“The exhibition takes visitors on a fascinating journey through the history of magic – from mermaids to crystal balls, from broomsticks to garden gnomes! It’s been enormous fun choosing the exhibits.”
Julian Harrison, lead curator of Harry Potter: A History of Magic at the British Library

The Harry Potter: A History of Magic exhibition is based on the subjects studied at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, including Potions, Herbology, Divination, Care of Magical Creatures and Defence Against the Dark Arts.

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Harry Potter: A History of Magic goes online
Image (detail): A phoenix rising from the ashes in a 13th-century bestiary (c) British Library

Google Arts and Culture
Harry Potter: A History of Magic

Kids can discover manuscripts, magical objects and rare books from the British Library’s collection, all in which capture the traditions of folklore and magic from across the world.

Highlights include:

• Exclusive Q & A with lead Curator Julian Harrison on creating Harry Potter: A History of Magic Exhibition at the British Library (2017).

Explore the journey that J.K. Rowling took to create Harry Potter, see her sketches of Hogwarts and handwritten notes.

• Discover the original artworks by Jim Kay, illustrator of the latest editions of Harry Potter books.

• Join Julian Harrison (curator at the British Library) as he explores the history of magic

• Explore the collection of items in The Museum of Witchcraft & Magic including broomsticks, serpentine wand, fortune-telling teacup and more.

• Search the Ripley Scroll, an ancient manuscript that sets out the ingredients for the elixir of life (Philosopher’s Stone).

• The Celestial Globe dating from 1693, made by Vincent Coronelli explores ancient constellations, some of which share their names with familiar characters from the Harry Potter stories, such as Remus Lupin, Sirius Black, Bellatrix LeStrange and Draco Malfoy.

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Harry Potter: A History of Magic goes online
A broomstick belonging to Olga Hunt (c) Museum of Witchcraft, Boscastle

“The British Library has done an incredible job. Encountering objects for real that have in some shape or form figured in my books has been quite wonderful and to have several of my own items in the exhibition is a reminder of twenty amazing years since Harry was first published.”
J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series

Harry Potter: A History of Magic goes online
Image: The snowy owl, in John James Audubon’s The Birds of America 1827-38 (c) British Library Board

Have you ever wanted to study like a wizard? Kids can head to the ‘How to study like a wizard’ section to discover the history behind the classes at Hogwarts. There are eight online exhibits – Potions, Charms, Herbology, Alchemy, Astronomy, Divination, Defence against the Dark Arts and Care of Magical Creatures.

Harry Potter: A History of Magic through Google Arts and Culture is a fascinating curated online exhibition the whole family can enjoy.

Main image: Harry Potter -– A History of Magic exhibition at the British Library (c) Tony Antoniou. #HarryPotteratHome

Keep an eye out for these beautiful Harry Potter books available online:

'Harry Potter At Home' digital hub for kids
'Harry Potter At Home' digital hub for kids
'Harry Potter At Home' digital hub for kids
'Harry Potter At Home' digital hub for kids
'Harry Potter At Home' digital hub for kids
'Harry Potter At Home' digital hub for kids
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