It may have been five years since the last Harry Potter film was released, but J.K. Rowling is still keeping the magic alive. Thanks in a large part to Pottermore, we've had a steady stream of updates from the Wizarding World. Whether you want to know which house Harry's kids were sorted into, or what Hermione did next, Rowling's got you covered.
Now, she's answered one of the biggest questions of the Harry Potter universe: are Hogwarts, Durmstrang, and Beauxbatons the only wizarding schools in existence? It turns out that there are more schools across the world, but not nearly as many as some of us expected...
There Are Only 11 Wizarding Schools
Rowling shed some light on the issue on Pottermore, explaining why there are so few schools...
"The number of countries that have their own magical school is minuscule compared to those that do not. This is because the wizarding populations of most countries choose the option of home schooling."
Rowling also revealed that these schools are all in remote locations (like Hogwarts) to prevent Muggle discovery and defend against "dark wizards."
So England was not the only country to suffer from wizarding wars... Hopefully we'll get some info about this in Fantastic Beasts: will we see another dark wizard?
Fantastic Beast Hints
The idea of how different countries create their own magical culture is fascinating, and with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them coming soon, we'll finally get to see another magical school in the United States of America!
Rowling already hinted about this school on her Twitter...
...and now we have a name for the school: Ilvermorny! Unfortunately, that's all we know so far. Watch this space! But Rowling did give us plenty of info about three other wizarding schools...
1. Mahoutokoro, Japan
This ancient school is located on the remote island of Minami Iwo Jima, and is described as "ornate and exiquisite." Japanese students begin this school at only 7 years old. Instead of arriving by train or boat, the students are taken to the school by giant storm petrols (the birds which are native to the island).
There's also something interesting about their robes...
"Students are presented with enchanted robes which grow in size as they do, and which change color as the learning of their wearer increases, beginning a faint pink color and becoming (if top grades are achieved) gold. If the robes turn white, this is an indication that the student has adopted illegal practices."
Apparently "turning white" is considered a huge disgrace and is grounds for expulsion. If only Hogwarts had used these robes: maybe Voldemort's dark magic would have been discovered before he rose to power! You can read more about this school here.
2. Uagadou, Africa
Given the address of "Mountains of the Moon," this hidden school specializes in Astronomy, Transfiguration, and Alchemy.
Instead of using owl post, the school of Uagadou selects new students by sending "dream messengers," who leave tokens for the children in their sleep. This isn't the only way Uagadou differs from Hogwarts...
"The wand is a European invention, and while African witches and wizards have adopted it as a useful tool, many spells are cast simply by pointing the finger or through hand gestures. This gives Uagadou students a sturdy line of defense when accused of breaking the International Statute of Secrecy ('I was only waving, I never meant his chin to fall off')."
Unfortunately, Rowling didn't reveal which African country this school is located in, but you can read more about it here.
3. Castelobruxo, Brazil
This school is similar to Hogwarts in that it resembles the ruins of an ancient temple, while magical people see the school as it really is.
Castelobruxo specializes in Magizoology and Herbology, as the students use the jungle around them in their studies. But the magical creatures in the rainforest can be quite a handful...
"Both building and grounds are protected by the Caipora, small and furry spirit-beings who are extraordinarily mischievous and tricky. Castelobruxo Headmistress Benedita Dourado was once heard to laugh heartily, on a visit to Hogwarts, when Headmaster Armando Dippet complained of Peeves the poltergeist."
Ultimately though, the Caipora "watch over" the students, protecting them from harm. Maybe we'll see these creatures in the Fantastic Beasts movie... You can read more about the school on Pottermore!
The Story Continues...
Until Fantastic Beasts is released, these hints from Pottermore help continue the story of this magical world. Here's hoping we get to learn more about the American school soon!
And if you didn't see your country here fear not: Rowling assured fans on her Twitter that details of other schools, like those in Australia and Canada, "will be revealed in due course"!