It's been 8 years since the final Harry Potter book was released, but that hasn't stopped outspoken and social media-savvy author J.K. Rowling from giving us some brand new information on a character from deep within the Harry Potter universe - Moaning Myrtle's name!
Who is Moaning Myrtle again?
Any Harry Potter fan worth their salt will remember Moaning Myrtle from her part in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets when Harry, Hermione and Ron used her bathroom on the first floor to brew Polyjuice potion. It was later revealed that her bathroom was actually the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets where Salazar Slytherin's basilisk lived (the same basilisk which had actually killed Myrtle when she was a student at Hogwarts in 1943).
Myrtle made another appearance in Harry's fourth year (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) when he was entered into the Triwizard Tournament and needed to solve a clue for the second task by submerging a golden egg underwater. Myrtle helped Harry understand the clue while he bathed in the luxurious prefects' bathroom.
Moaning Myrtle, so named because of her constant sobbing, made her last appearance when Draco Malfoy confided in her about his failed assassination attempt on Dumbledore, and then witnessed the duel between Harry and Malfoy (when Harry used the Sectumsempra curse), before Snape ordered her out of the bathroom and we never saw her again (though presumably she still haunts the first-floor girls bathroom).
So what did we learn about her?
J.K. was asked over Twitter by a fan if she could let her know Moaning Myrtle's full name because her father wanted to know. Luckily, Rowling quickly replied, revealing for the first time the ghost's full name:
Finally Myrtle has been given a full name: Myrtle Elizabeth Warren!
But Rowling's response sparked off some questions from another fan about whether she actually knew Myrtle's full name already, or if she simply made them up on the spot, which when you think about it, it is a pretty decent question - after all there must be thousands of little unknown details about the Harry Potter universe. Surely Rowling can just invent whatever detail she likes? Well, as it turns out, she did already know Myrtle's surname!
However, she did she freely admit that Myrtle's middle name was something made up on the spot:
Made up on the spot or not, I like it!
Savvy political spectators among us may have noted that the last two thirds of Myrtle's name sound like it could be some sort of nod to United States Senator Elizabeth Warren, but J.K. went out of her way to assure us all that it was purely coincidence:
But what about another ghostly connection?
With any political connections out the way, there is, however, one other connection to the name 'Warren' that might make a lot of sense when it comes to naming a ghostly character.
Ed and Lorraine Warren were extremely well known paranormal investigators and authors. The Warrens are best known for their involvement in cases such as that of Amityville Horror (which the 1979 and 2005 Amityville Horror movies were based on), which involved a New York couple being driven from their home my paranormal activity. The Warrens also took care of the famous Annabelle doll in 1970, which was supposedly possessed by the spirit of a young girl named Annabelle Higgins. The doll is on display in their Occult Museum, and was the basis of the horror film Annabelle in 2014.
Ed Warren passed away in 2006, and Lorraine Warren is now 88, but there's no doubt that the Warrens are, and were, very renowned in the area of paranormal investigation- what better people to name one of Hogwarts most famous ghosts after?
Source: Entertainment Weekly