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Aragog

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Ara
Aragog
Biographical information
Born

c. 1942

Died

20 April, 1997 (aged around 55)

Physical information
Species

Acromantula

Gender

Male

Hair colour

Brown

Eye colour

Black & Grey/Milky-White (Blind)

Family information
Family members
Affiliation
Loyalty
"He had known Hagrid to present a vicious baby dragon with a teddy bear, seen him croon over giant scorpions with suckers and stingers, attempt to reason with his brutal giant of a half-brother, but this was perhaps the most incomprehensible of all his monster fancies: the giant talking spider, Aragog, who dwelled deep within the Forbidden Forest and which he and Ron had only narrowly escaped four years previously."
Harry Potter in his sixth year thinking about Hagrid's friendship with Aragog[src]

Aragog (c. 194220 April, 1997) was a blind Acromantula owned by Rubeus Hagrid. Like the rest of his species, Aragog had a taste for human flesh and was able to communicate with humans. In his youth he was the size of a Pekingese and near the end of his life was about the size of a small elephant. Aragog had a wife, Mosag, and was the leader of a large Acromantula colony composed of all of his sons and daughters. During his life, Aragog was accused of being Slytherin's Monster, although this was really a basilisk. Ironically, all spiders fear the basilisk. After the Acromantula died, some of his venom was taken by Horace Slughorn and was most likely sold later on.

Biography

Early life

"I come from a distant land. A traveller gave me to Hagrid when I was an egg."
—Aragog[src]
Youngaragog

Aragog in his youth at Hogwarts.

Aragog was originally brought as an egg in a distant land and came to Britain in the pocket of a traveller. Somehow, the egg came into possession of Rubeus Hagrid, who at the time was a student at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. After Aragog hatched from it, Hagrid kept him in a cupboard in one of the school's dungeons, feeding him scraps.[1]

Opening of the Chamber of Secrets

"They believed that I was the monster that dwells in what they call the Chamber of Secrets."
—Aragog[src]
Aragog 1

Harry Potter and Ron Weasley encounter Aragog and his offspring in the Forbidden Forest.

When Lord Voldemort, known previously as Tom Marvolo Riddle, began unleashing Slytherin's Monster, the Basilisk, upon the castle to exterminate its Muggle-born population, Aragog was framed as being the monster and Hagrid was accused of being Slytherin's heir. When one of its victims, Moaning Myrtle, died, it motivated the school's governors to consider closing the school. Tom, who considered Hogwarts his only home, found out about Aragog after discovering the young Hagrid tending to the Acromantula, and blamed it for the monster's rampage. Tom came to capture the creature, but Hagrid helped Aragog escape to the Forbidden Forest. Hagrid, though, was later punished with expulsion from the school. Aragog, meanwhile, had to flee into the Forbidden Forest.[1]

"It wasn't him! He wouldn't! He never!"
—Rubeus Hagrid, after an accusation by Tom Riddle[src]

Hagrid, though expelled, was assigned the position of Gamekeeper at Hogwarts, by the intervention of Albus Dumbledore, thus allowing him to stay in contact with Aragog. Hagrid would visit Aragog now and then, bringing him food. On one particular visit, Hagrid brought Aragog a wife, Mosag, another Acromantula. The two Acromantulas started a large colony. Sometime before 1993, however, Mosag died. Aragog also became blind.[1]

History repeats itself

AragogSpider

Aragog and his dome web in the Forbidden Forest.

"...Hagrid never opened the Chamber of Secrets. He was innocent."
—Harry Potter, after speaking to Aragog and barely surviving an attack[src]

In 1993, Salazar Slytherin's basilisk was unleashed on the castle again. This time, however, the rampage did not result in any deaths, only the petrification of several students. Once again, however, the governors considered closing the school due to the attacks. Governors of the school once again accused Hagrid of being the Heir of Slytherin. Hagrid vaguely told Ron Weasley and Harry Potter to "follow the spiders," but couched this advice in a statement to Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge. Though reluctantly, the two decided to continue their investigation of the monster, and follow the spiders like Hagrid had indirectly told them. There the two found Aragog and his colony. They subsequently learned that Aragog was not the monster of the Chamber. Aragog told the two that while he showed mercy to Hagrid, he would not deny his many children fresh meat—even if they were Hagrid's friends. However, thanks to the Flying Ford Anglia, he and his children failed to eat the two boys. After this, Harry and Ron actually found the real monster and the real heir, Tom Riddle.[1]

Death

Aragog's funeral 2

Slughorn, Hagrid, Harry and Fang attend Aragog's funeral.

"Farewell, Aragog, king of arachnids, whose long and faithful friendship those who knew you won't forget! Though your body will decay, your spirit lingers on in the quiet, web-spun places of your forest home."
—Aragog's eulogy, delivered by Horace Slughorn[src]

In 1996, Harry and Hermione Granger, in an attempt to lure Dolores Umbridge into a trap in the Forest, took the path towards Aragog's colony, but the immediate danger of running into Aragog's children was avoided when the local Centaurs intercepted them.[2]

That same year, Aragog contracted an unknown illness over the summer, and despite Hagrid's attempts to heal and comfort Aragog by feeding him giant grubs, he eventually died on 20 April, 1997. Before this time, it had been dangerous for Hagrid to go and visit Aragog because, sensing the giant spider's weakness, his family was getting rather restive and possibly preparing to devour him (Aragog). When Aragog died, Hagrid was able to get Aragog's corpse out of the colony before his children could attempt to cannibalise it. Aragog was buried in a deep pit near Hagrid's house the next evening. Aragog's funeral was attended by Hagrid, Harry, and Professor Horace Slughorn, who took the opportunity to "acquire" Aragog's highly valuable venom.[3]

Post-mortem

"Don't hurt 'em, don't hurt 'em!"
—Hagrid, trying to stop the fighters at the Battle of Hogwarts from hurting the Acromantulas.[src]

In 1998, the Acromantula colony was forced out of the forest by Voldemort, his Death Eaters and his assembled army of magical creatures, who then established their camp there as a prelude to the Battle of Hogwarts. Aragog's children survived, however, and invaded Hogwarts, attacking both the Death Eaters and the defenders of Hogwarts. It is unknown if the colony and its population survived following the conclusion of the battle, which was in favour of the Order of the Phoenix.[4]

Personality and traits

13

Aragog

"Go? I think not. My sons and daughters do not harm Hagrid, on my command. But I cannot deny them fresh meat, when it wanders so willingly into our midst. Good-bye, friend of Hagrid."
—Aragog[src]

Aragog had a close friendship with his owner, Hagrid. He admitted that it would have been his instinct to try to attack humans, but he restrained himself out of respect and gratitude for Hagrid, and never personally harmed a human in his life.[1] In fact, Hagrid was the only human that Aragog stopped his sons and daughters from eating. Otherwise, he would not deprive them of fresh meat and would allow his sons and daughters to attack unsuspecting humans. One such case was when Ron Weasley and Harry Potter found Aragog. However, the two managed to escape by sheer luck, as the Weasleys' enchanted Ford Anglia emerged to extract them from the danger.[1]

Aragog, like all spiders, feared Basilisks, and would not speak of one, not even to Hagrid, who had asked him many times.[1] The way that Aragog would not speak their name or of them is similar to the way that wizards and witches (amongst other creatures like house-elves and goblins) would not speak Voldemort's name, or discuss him even obliquely any more than was absolutely necessary.

Behind the scenes

Lego aragog

LEGO version of Aragog

"Help rescue Harry Potter and Ron from the giant spider Aragog in the Dark Forest!"
—Official description of the LEGO set[src]
  • In the film version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Aragog was voiced by Julian Glover.[1]
  • It is possible that Aragog could have been based on another giant spider in the Lord of the Rings, Shelob.[5]
  • A LEGO version of Aragog was released, entitled 4727 Aragog in the Dark Forest. A second was released in 2010 in which he appeared, named 4738 Hagrid's Hut.[6]
  • In the film version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Aragog was a massive animatronic creature. Rupert Grint, the actor who plays Ron Weasley, is afraid of spiders (arachnophobia) just as much as his character is, and said it was easily the scariest scenes to film.
  • Aragogs counterpart in Lego Harry Potter years 1-4 screeches multiple times (most likely due to Lego characters inability to speak). If one listens to Aragog closely they can hear the roar of Gigan in his screeches. (Gigan is a famous evil monster from the Godzilla series) (you can hear Aragog's Gigan-like roars at about 1:30 into this video and after--> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_rvo07FuGU)

Etymology

  • Aragog comes from the words "Ara" comes from "arachnid", which is the class spiders belong to. "Gog", and "Magog" are biblical names.
  • Possibly derived from the Greek word "agog," meaning "leader", from which the modern English "demagogue" is an iteration.

See also

Appearances

Wiki
The Harry Potter Wiki has 24 images related to Aragog.
Spidersketch4

Aragog and his Acromantula colony attacking Harry Potter and Ron Weasley

Notes and references

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