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Jinxes are usually spells whose effects are irritating but amusing. Hexes are considered slightly worse than jinxes, but are still only dark magic of a minor sort. Curses are usually the worst kinds of dark magic.
Behind the scenes
- Despite Rowling's descriptions of what classifies curses, hexes, and jinxes, there seems to be some inconsistency with which spells fall under each category. For example, the effects of the Leg-Locker Curse, Jelly-Legs Curse and Full Body-Bind Curse, which don't cause any lasting injury, seem to fall more under the definition of a jinx or hex, while Voldemort's Jinx on the post of Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher has had serious, lasting consequences for several of those affected, which would seem more like a curse.