Dactylomancy - Dwarf
Deletrius -- Dementor -- Demiguise -- Demon -- Densaugeo -- Devil's Snare -- Diffindo --
Diricawl -- Disapparate -- Disillusionment -- Dissendium -- Dittany -- Divination --
Doxy -- Doxycide -- Draco: see also Malfoy -- Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus -- Draconite --
Dragons -- Dreams -- Druids -- Dugbog -- Dumbledore -- Durmstrang -- Dwarf
Dactylomancy - from the Greek words dakterlios ("finger ring") and manteia ("divination"). Also called dactyliomancy. There are two basic methods: A ring on a rope or chain was either used as a pendulum, or it was dropped into a bowl of water (presumably sans chain), in this kind of Divination.
Daisy (Plant) - the chopped roots are a Shrinking Solution ingredient.
Daphnomancy - Divination gleaned from the burning of a laurel branch. If crackling is heard, the portents are good. If no sound is heard, the omens are bad, or the answer is false in response to a question.
Dark Arts/Black Magic - the practice of using magic spells to harness either occult forces and/or evil spirits to do the wizard's bidding. What sets the dark arts apart from other magic is the intent of the practicing magician, which is an evil one. The spells used for this form of magic fall under the category of the curse, often used to cause harm to someone else.
Some believe that all magic is "colorless": whether it's black or white depends upon its intention, yet others have suggested the war between black magic and white is an expression of man's dual nature. Dumbledore does tell Harry which side you take isn't a matter of destiny but a matter of choice and self-will.
Dark Mark - see Spell: Morsmordre
Deletrius (Spell) - erases the images of past spells revealed by Priori Incantato and might be used to counter the effects of other spells.
Dementor - the deadly creatures guarding Azkaban prison. They wear cloaks with great hoods to hide their faces and bodies, and with good reason, as their skin is slimy gray and covered with scabs. Dementors promote depression with their ability to drain all good feelings from the people in their vicinity.
Demiguise - one has to be a skilled wizard to catch sight of the demiguise in its habitat in the far east, because it becomes invisible when threatened. This is an herbivore, peaceful by nature. It resembles a graceful ape, with large black eyes usually hidden by its long, fine, silver-colored hair. The silky hair may be spun into invisibility cloaks.
Demon - spirits of malicious intent, existing in all shapes and sizes, and in all cultures.
The "daimons" of ancient Greece were an exception. These were invisible spirits serving as go-betweens for the gods and man. They could be good or bad, offering guidance and protection or seeking to lead men astray. By the late fourth century A.D., Christianity made sure that daimons evolved into demons. The Church taught that the true spirits serving as intermediaries from God to men were angels. The pagan spirits, whether good or bad, were considered to be fallen angels or demons. Borrowing an attitude from antiquity, Christianity placed the blame for illness, accidents, and even bad dreams, on demons. Such was the obsession to find convenient scapegoats, that by the sixteenth century the number of Satan's assistants was said to be 7,405,926.
Densaugeo (Spell) - a curse that causes teeth to grow larger and larger.
Devil's Snare (Plant) - First year Hogwarts students learn that Devil's Snare grows in damp, dark places and can't abide fire. The plant is a mass of springy vines and tendrils which seem soft but its creepers can be deadly. Using its rudimentary sense of touch, the tendrils bind anyone whom it comes in contact with and will finally choke them. Its response to struggling victims is to tie them that much faster. Anyone who relaxes won't be killed as quickly as those who fight. Any flame spell will repel this plant.
Diffindo (Spell) - the spell to cut something open or break it into pieces.
Diricawl - a plump, flightless bird with fluffy feathers, from Mauritius. Diricawls evade danger by disappearing in a puff of feathers and reappearing somewhere else. Muggles knew this bird as the "dodo". They mistakenly believe they hunted this animal to extinction.
Disapparate (Spell) - a spell to make one vanish (and reappear or Apparate elsewhere).
Disillusionment (Spell) - a charm hiding the true, magical nature of something, such as the example of hiding Hogwarts from muggles. It works by making something or someone like a chameleon, which can assume its background colors in order to blend in, in effect becoming invisible as far as the eye is concerned.
Dissendium (Spell) - to open a secret passage.
Dittany (Plant) - "One Thousand Magical Herbs and Fungi" lists Dittany in its pages. Muggles also use this plant, both as a culinary flavouring and to aid digestion.
Divination - the art of predicting the future, looking into the past, and even finding lost objects, has existed in some variation in every culture since the dawn of recorded history -- and before.
- Aeromancy - a system of divination where the weather is the forecaster. Anything to do with weather, such as halos around the sun or moon, thunder and/or lightning, wind direction and strength, cloud shapes, etc, were interpreted as omens to reveal the future. This is one of the oldest forms of divination, practiced by the priests of Babylonia, for instance.
- Alectromancy - a rooster was the active agent in alectromancy (alektor is rooster in Greek). The letters of the alphabet were written in a large circle, and grains of wheat were placed on the letters. Then the rooster was freed to peck at the food. The literal "pecking order" of the rooster spelled out the message, but if the words made no sense, a diviner had to interpret the message. The grains were replaced as soon as they were eaten so that any letter could be repeated, if necessary.
- Aleuromancy An ancient form of divination that used flour. Sentences were written on pieces of paper, and each piece was rolled up in a little ball of flour. After the flour balls were thoroughly mixed up nine times, they were handed out to the seekers of fortunes. Apollo, who supposedly presided over this kind of divination, was surnamed Aleuromantis.
- Alomancy - salt might be considered common now, but in many parts of the world, it was once held to have magical properties. This form of divination required a handful of salt to be tossed onto a surface. The resulting pattern would be interpreted.
- Apantomancy - a chance encounter with an animal was once considered an omen. Interpretations of similar encounters vary; a famous example is that of the black cat crossing one's path: Americans generally consider it an ill omen while the British can think it's a lucky happening.
- Arithmancy - also called numerology, arithmancy (from the Greek arithmo, meaning "number," and mancy, meaning "prophecy"), is based on foretelling the future by using names and numbers. This practice is over two thousand years old, and its rules are specific, employing mathematical calculations as part of the formula of this practice.
- Astragalomancy - from astragalos, a Greek word refering to the knucklebone or vertebra of an animal, from which dice were originally made. This is divination by throwing dice, dating back to ancient Egypt.
- Astrology: see Astrology
- Augury - a promising portent of the future, and the general art of divination, applying to several kinds of it, but relating mostly to fortune-casting based on signs and omens related to the appearance and behavior of animals (known as Zoomancy).
- Austromancy - A sub-branch of Aeromancy which interpretats the winds, based upon intensity and direction.
- Belomancy - interpreting the flight, or direction, of arrows. A method used by Greeks and Arabs. One version was to throw arrows up into the air, and determine which direction to take from the way those arrows inclined as they fell.
- Bibliomancy - a question is asked, a book opened randomly, and with eyes closed, the diviner points out a spot on the page. The sentence or paragraph were the finger rests is the answer, or a comment about the question.
- Catoptromancy - divining the future by looking into a mirror
- Ceromancy - an ancient practice of slowly pouring wax melted in a brass bowl into another bowl filled with cold water. The congealed shapes were then interpreted by the seer.
- Chiromancy - to interpret the lines of the palm, or Palmistry
- A form of Christmas divination originated in Russia, performed at the time of the winter solstice. In a dark room, two lit candles and a pair of mirrors are positioned so that one reflects candlelight into another. The seeker, typically a girl, would look at the seventh reflection in order to catch sight of her future.
- Crystal Ball - gazing into a polished crystal ball in an attempt to see the future, a method originating in the Middle Ages.
- Crystalomancy - gazing into natural or polished crystal in an attempt to see the future.
- Dactylomancy - from the Greek words dakterlios ("finger ring") and manteia ("divination"). Also called dactyliomancy. There are two basic methods: A ring on a rope or chain was either used as a pendulum, or it was dropped into a bowl of water (presumably sans chain).
- Daphnomancy - A branch of laurel is burned. If crackling is heard, the portents are good. If no sound is heard, the omens are bad, or the answer is false in response to a question.
- Eromancy - One of the half-dozen types of divination practised among Persians making use of air. They covered their heads with a napkin and leaned over a vase filled with water. Then they muttered the objects of their desires. If the water showed bubbles or any surface disturbance, the soothsaying was regarded as being fortunate.
- Fire Omens - interpreting what one sees in fire
- Geloscopy - divining futures from laughter
- Geomancy - a handful of loose dirt is cupped between the hands and tossed to the ground. Its patterns are then interpreted. A later form, called paper geomancy, has the diviner ask a question and, with eyes closed, tap the point of a pencil onto a sheet of paper, making several random marks until he feels like stopping. The resulting patterns are interpreted.
- Haruspication - the inspection of animal entrails
- Hepatoscopy - examining the entrails of sacrificed animals, especially the liver
- Horoscope: see Horoscope
- Hydromancy - water was important in many forms of divination. In one method, practiced in ancient Greece, three stones were dropped one at a time into a pool of still water. The first was round, the second triangular, and the third stone square. The patterns of concentric ripples were studied for images or reflections to interpret.
- Lampadomancy - a lamp flame was the tool for this type of divination
- Libranomancy - the study of incense smoke and the patterns it makes
- Lithomancy - gemstones could predict the future
- Margaritomancy - from margarita, Latin for "pearl". A pearl was either placed beneath an inverted pot, or it was put in a glass of water, near a fire. The name of someone suspected of a crime was spoken. If the pearl flew up and hit the top of the pot, or it exploded in the water, then the suspect was guilty.
- Metoposcopy - the interpretation of wrinkles on the forehead
- Molybdomancy - a method that interprets the meaning of the sharp shapes that result from dripping molten lead or tin into water.
- Myomancy - divination using the appearance, color and sounds of mice.
- Numerology: See Arithmancy
- Oinomancy - practiced by ancient Romans, this was the interpretation of sediment left in the bottom of a wine cup.
- Oneiromancy - divination by dreams. The Greek word oneiros means "dream" plus mancy means "prophecy". See Dreams
- Ornithomancy - the study of the activity of birds
- Ouija - a board with the alphabet on it, used with a planchette to spell out supernatural messages
- Padomancy - a system widely used in ancient China, reading the soles of the feet rather than the palms of the hands.
- Palmistry - reading the palms, also called Chiromancy (from the Greek cheiro, meaning "hand" and mancy, meaning "prophecy"). This form of divination probably originated in India at least 5000 years ago. Not only is it fortune-telling, but character analysis as well, based on the lines of the palms, and also the size, shape and texture of the hands. Most palm readers study both hands: the left reveals inherited characteristics; the right, choices laying ahead, along with possible victories and defeats in the future.
- Phrenology - shape of the skull, with all its boney bumps and depressions, is used in this type of forecasting
- Phyllorhodomancy - dating back to ancient Greece, using rose leaves. The leaf would be clapped against a hand and the omen read from the resulting sound. A positive outcome was predicted by a good and clear sound while a muffled sound indicated a bad result.
- Scrying - staring at a clear or reflective surface until images begin to form, either within the object or within the mind of the scryer
- Tarot: see Tarot
- Tasseomancy - reading tea leaves (Arabic tas, meaning "cup" and Greek mancy, meaning "prophecy"). This practice began in China, probably during the sixth century. Tea was unknown in the West until 1609, when Dutch traders imported it from the Orient.
- Xylomancy - patterns made by fallen tree limbs, branches, twigs, or other pieces of wood on the ground were interpreted during biblical times.
- Zoomancy - divination based on the appearance and/or behavior of animals.
Doxy (aka Biting Fairy) - found in the colder climates of nothern Europe and America. The doxy is not a fairy, though there is a general resemblence between the two species. Unlike the fairy, doxys are covered by thick black hair. They have an extra pair of arms and legs and their wings resemble a beetle's, being shiny, thick and curved. They lay black eggs, up to about five hundred at a time, and bury them. The eggs hatch after two to three weeks.
An antidote is needed if a doxy bites you with its double set of sharp and venomous teeth.
Doxycide - a black liquid used to get rid of doxies. It paralyzes them so that they can be caught safely.
Draco - see Malfoy
Draco has a two definitions in Latin, "dragon" and "snake."
Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus meaning "Never tickle a sleeping dragon" - the Latin motto for Hogwarts.
Draconite (or Dracontias) - a magical gemstone found inside a dragon's head. It has to be cut out while the dragon is alive; otherwise, it will not be a stone as the hard quality ebbs away with the life of the dragon. A typical method of acquiring the stone is to cast about herbs which make the dragon sleep, and thus the creature is still alive but rendered non-threatening. These stones are said to be so hard that no one can carve, render or engrave anything upon them.
Dragons - draco (like Draco Malfoy), Latin for "dragon" (the Greek word drakon means "huge serpent"), a creature which has appeared in mythology and folklore for most of recorded history. Of course, Charlie Weasley knows these animals aren't mere storytelling fabrication, but it's better if the muggles believe so. Generally, the dragon is a reptile rather resembling a crocodile but with great, batlike wings, massive claws, one or two sets of legs, impenetrable scales, fangs that are sometimes poisonous, and fiery breath. Some sport twin horns and a forked or barbed tail. Welsh dragons are often described as red, German dragons are white, and others come in black, green, or yellow.
The dragon seems to be the most famous magical creature, to both muggles and wizards alike, many would argue. The muggle viewpoint: it symbolizes both evil and good, depending on location, location, location!
The western dragon is the bad boy, suffering from an ill reputation in places like Babylonia, Egypt, Germany, Scandinavia, and the British Isles. The creation epic of Babylonia has a central figure, the goddess Tiamat, a dragonlike personification of the oceans and known as the Queen of Darkness, who headed hordes of chaos and whose destruction was required to ensure the stability of the universe. The ancient Hebrews thought the dragon represented death and evil. Christianity inherited the Hebraic idea of the dragon, which figures in all the important apocalyptic literature of the Bible. Draco is a symbol of evil in Christian art, often represented as crushed under the feet of saints and martyrs, a symbol of Christianity trimphant over paganism. Christian saints, like St. George, were dragonslayers. St. George was traveling near Silena, Libya, when he heard the tale of a local dragon living in a lake. This beast feasted on maidens, and unless it was fed a maiden every day, it kept the townspeople from being able to access the lake. Armies had been slaughtered when trying to kill the creature. St. George arrived in time to save the king's daughter, the only remaining maiden (did anyone say being highborn doesn't have its perks?) in the land. He killed the dragon with one stroke of his lance. George was made the patron saint of England in the fourteenth century.
In the east, however, no one would want to kill a dragon. Here, they are considered benevolent creatures of good fortune. (Also, the ancient western Greeks and Romans believed dragons understood the secrets of the earth, and could convey this knowledge to man, so they weren't completely seen as nasty creatures.)
Eastern dragons don't have wings, nor do they breathe fire, but they can fly by magic. The dragon was the national emblem of the Chinese Empire, and also the official emblem of the Japanese imperial family for centuries.
The wizard's perspective of dragons: they are among the most challenging of beasts to conceal from muggles. Females tend to be larger and more agressive than males, but only a trained and skilled wizard should attempt to approach either sex of the dragon. Much of this creature, including blood, heart, liver, horns and hide, posses great powers of magic.
There are ten breeds:
- Antipodean Opaleye - from New Zealand and Australia, this valley-dweller is a medium sized dragon between two to three tons in weight. They have scales resembling iridescent mother-of-pearl and eyes without pupils. They breathe a scarlet flame and have pale gray eggs which are often mistaken for fossils by muggles. They like to feast on sheep.
- Chinese Fireball - a dragon with smooth scales, colored scarlet with a fringe of gold spikes encircling its face. Its protruberent eyes are set about a snubby snout. They weigh between two to four tons and produce a mushroom-shaped flame. Their crimson eggs are flecked with gold, a shell very highly prized by Chinese wizards. The Fireball eats most mammals, especially favoring pigs and humans.
- Common Welsh Green - from Wales, a verdant green like the grass of its native country, this dragon possesses a melodius roar. Its fire is exhaled in thin jets. The eggs are an earthy brown color and speckled with green. Its preferred prey is sheep.
- Hebridean Black - from the British Hebrides, this creature grows up to thirty feet in length. It has brilliant purple eyes, rough scales and sharp, shallow ridges along its back. The wings are batlike in structure and an arrow-shaped spike tips off its tail. It hunts deer, large dogs and cattle.
- Hungarian Horntail - this black and lizardlike dragon is considered to be the most dangerous of its species. It has yellow eyes, bronze horns and spikes along its lengthy tail. Its fire has a range of up to fifty feet. The eggs are colored like cement and the shells are very hard. The Horntail's prey includes goats, sheep and sometimes humans.
- Norwegian Ridgeback - a dragon that closely resembles the horntail, except for prominent black back ridges rather than tail spikes. It is so aggressive to its own kind that it's one of the rarer types of dragon. The eggs are black and its young start breathing fire earlier than other breeds between one to three months of age. The Ridgeback not only hunts land mammals, but unusual for a dragon, it also preys on water creatures.
- Peruvian Vipertooth - at fifteen feet in length, the smallest of the dragons, and also the faster flyer. A Vipertooth has smooth, coppery scales with black ridge markings. It sports short horns and especially venomous fangs. It dines on goats, cows and likes humans in particular.
- Romanian Longhorn - the dark green scales of this dragon contrast with its long golden horns. It uses these horns to gore its prey before roasting its dinner. Powdered, these glittering horns are in high demand as a potion ingredient -- so high that the longhorn is an endangered species. They are being bred to try and increase their numbers.
- Swedish Short-Snout - its silver-blue skin is much sought after to manufacture protective shields and gloves. The Short-snout exhales a bright blue flame that reduces both bone and timber to ash in seconds.
- Ukrainian Ironbelly - the largest of the dragons, often weighing six tons, this beast from the Ukraine is quite rotund. It has metallic gray scales, red eyes and very long, vicious talons.
Dreams - see Divination: Oneiromancy
To dream is to experience sensations and events while sleeping, in a trance or in an unconscious state. Dreams can feel very real, and they can also be fantastic in their content. Some believe that dreams give hints about the future, whether directly or symbolically, and they might also be visitations from ghosts or other spirits.
In addition to the possible benefit of seeing the future, dreams have also been a source of creative inspiration. Writers Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker both claimed their characters of Dr. Frankenstein and Count Dracula, respectively, came to them in dreams.
Druids - pre-Christian priests and practitioners of the religion, Druidism, of ancient Gaul (now France), Britain and Ireland. Druid comes from Celtic for "knowledge of the oak tree."
Druidism flourished from the 2nd century B.C. until the 2nd century A.D., but in parts of Britain the Romans didn't invade, it survived another two or three centuries until supplanted by Christianity. The tenets of this religion included belief in the immortal soul, which passed into a newborn child after death. The followers also believed they were descended from a Supreme Being. Druids were knowledgable about astrology, magic, and the powers of plants and animals. Indeed, they were the scholarly class of their day, being the priests, teachers and judges of their society. Holding the oak tree (and mistletoe, particularly when it grew on oaks) in great reverence, they usually practiced their rituals in oak forests. Archeologists believe they might have practiced at Stonehenge, but Stonehenge itself predates druids by many centuries, so the druids did not build the mysterious monument in England.
Dugbog - found in the marshes of Europe and the Americas. When still, it looks like an unremarkable piece of dead wood, but it has sharp, sharp teeth and finned paws, which allows it to glide/slither through the mud. A dugbog eats small mammals and will injure the ankles of any human walking in its range. Its favorite food is mandrake.
Dumbledore - headmaster of Hogwarts. His first name, Albus, is the Latin word for "white" and Dumbledore came from an old English word for bumble bee. Other than Harry Potter, he is the only wizard whom Voldemort fears. Dumbledore is one of a handful who dare speak Voldemort's name out loud. His Chocolate Frog trading card has him being "the greatest wizard of modern times."
Durmstrang - one of two wizarding schools in Continental Europe. Its location is a secret, though from the furry capes and cloaks worn by the students, one might assume a northern location. Possibly Russia? Durmstrang differs from Hogwarts in at least three ways: Hogwarts students learn Defense Against the Dark Arts but Durmstrang students learn the Dark Arts themselves; Durmstrang isn't as large, being only four stories tall; and no muggleborns are allowed to attend. See Beauxbatons
Dwarf - A creature of legend, who looks like a small man with a large head. They usually have long gray beards and they can become invisible. They live in the depths of the earth and guard their buried treasure very carefully.
Grimoire | Contents | Owl Post | Banners | Links | Thanks | Awards
Hogwarts: | Gryffindor | Hufflepuff | Ravenclaw | Slytherin |
| Snape (what's he been brewing?) |
| Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes |
View My Guestbook Sign My Guestbook