The protagonist and central character. As a baby, Harry faced Lord Voldemort and survived, earning the lightning bolt–shaped scar on his forehead. Harry is kind, stubborn, and resourceful. He has faced many hardships but always seems to emerge victorious.
The headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Dumbledore is an old and powerful wizard. Aside from Harry, Dumbledore is Voldemort’s only true nemesis. He represents wisdom, strength, and integrity.
The Senior Undersecretary to the Minister of Magic, and the self-appointed High Inquisitor of Hogwarts. Physically, Umbridge resembles a toad, and her behavior is just as ugly. She is arrogant, vindictive, and untrustworthy.
Also known as the “Dark Lord.” Most Wizards are afraid to speak his name. Voldemort embodies pure evil. He was once a student at Hogwarts named Tom Riddle, but he quickly became the most powerful dark force in the Wizarding world. Voldemort killed Harry’s parents and is responsible for the deaths of many others.
One of Harry’s best friends. A shy, nervous boy prone to embarrassment, Ron is a brave (if bumbling) young wizard. He comes from a pureblood Wizarding family. His twin brothers, Fred and George, and younger sister, Ginny, also attend Hogwarts.
One of Harry’s best friends. Strikingly intelligent and very hard-working, Hermione is always reminding Harry and Ron to study. She is extremely brave and at the top of her class at Hogwarts.
Harry’s godfather, and his father’s best friend and schoolmate. Sirius is an Animagus, which means that he can turn himself into a shaggy black dog, named Padfoot, at will. Sirius was wrongly imprisoned for murder, and, since his escape, has been forced to remain in hiding.
Head of House for Slytherin, and a former Death Eater. Snape teaches Potions and is a member of the Order. Harry does not trust Snape, but Dumbledore has long deemed him loyal.
Head of House for Gryffindor and instructor of Transfiguration. Professor McGonagall is tough but fair and has earned the respect of her students.
The gamekeeper at Hogwarts and instructor of Care of Magical Creatures. Hagrid is part giant and a very good friend to Harry. He is a member of the Order of the Phoenix and extremely loyal to Dumbledore.
The Minister of Magic. Fudge is corrupt and anxious. He believes that Dumbledore is after his job and thinks Harry is a liar.
Ron’s mother. Mrs. Weasley is tough and overprotective, with her children’s best interests always in mind. She is a member of the Order and loyal to Dumbledore. She considers Harry a member of her family.
Ron’s father and an employee of the Ministry of Magic, Misuse of Muggle Artifacts Division. Mr. Weasley is kind, loyal, and obsessed with Muggle culture. He treats Harry as his own son.
A student and outcast at Hogwarts. Luna’s father owns the Quibbler, a Wizard tabloid. She is often mocked at school but doesn’t seem to mind.
Ron’s younger sister. Ginny is sweet and brave and used to have a crush on Harry.
The seeker for the Slytherin Quidditch team and Harry’s arch-enemy at Hogwarts. Like his father, Draco disapproves of half-bloods or Mudbloods studying at Hogwarts. He is arrogant, ignorant, and terribly mean.
Draco’s father. Lucius is a Death Eater and servant of Voldemort.
Sirius’s cousin and a Death Eater. Bellatrix is responsible for torturing Mr. and Mrs. Longbottom into insanity. She is loyal only to Voldemort.
Instructor of Divination at Hogwarts. Professor Trelawney is scatterbrained, and her predictions are generally ridiculous. She is the great-great-granddaughter of a famous Seer, and she is responsible for the prophecy about Harry’s powers.
A retired Auror who once taught Defense Against the Dark Arts at Hogwarts. Moody is a member of the Order and loyal to Dumbledore.
A werewolf and a member of the Order. Lupin once taught Defense Against the Dark Arts at Hogwarts. He was a good friend of Harry’s father.
Formerly the Malfoy House-Elf, and freed by Harry at the end of Book II. Dobby has grown increasingly loyal to Harry. He helps Harry and the D.A. discover the Room of Requirement. Even though he has been freed, Dobby is still prone to self-punishment and often hurts himself when he feels he has not served his master well.
The Black House-Elf. Kreacher is loyal only to Bellatrix Lestrange and defies the Order to serve her. Kreacher lies and tells Harry that Sirius is at the Ministry when he is actually in the attic. Kreacher is inadvertently responsible for Sirius’s death.
Harry’s Muggle cousin, uncle, and aunt. The Dursleys are terrible people, and Harry dreads spending his summers with them. The family raised Harry until his eleventh birthday, when Dumbledore called for him to enroll at Hogwarts.