"Today, they suffered an hour and a half's droning on the subject of giant wars. Harry heard just enough within the first ten minutes to appreciate dimly that in another teacher's hands this subject might have been mildly interesting, but then his brain disengaged, and he spent the remaining hour and twenty minutes playing hangman on a corner of his parchment with Ron, while Hermione shot them filthy looks out of the corner of her eye."

The Giant Wars were wizarding bellicose conflicts that had historical significance,[2] having taken place in, or earlier to, the end of the nineteenth century.[1]

Giant Wars are part of the O.W.L.-level History of Magic curriculum at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.[2] During the 1995-1996 school year, this was a recurrent subject of Professor Cuthbert Binns's classes,[2][3] and the professor once set a foot-and-a-half-long essay about it.[2]

Behind the scenes

  • Considering how Harry acknowledged that the material would be "mildly interesting" if taught by a more engaging instructor, the giant wars presumably were fought between wizards and giants, seen as hearing about wizards valiantly fight to defend themselves and/or Muggles against ferocious giants would not only be more interesting than hearing about tribes of giants clubbing each other to death, but also make sense for them academically speaking.
  • The fact that they learned about the Giant Wars indicates a series of conflicts with many casualties, as evidenced by how they were close to extinct when the Aurors began killing them during the rise of Lord Voldemort, suggesting it cannot have been too many of them before that for an Auror Department of a single country to be able almost wipe out a whole population of another race.


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 16 (Godric's Hollow)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 12 (Professor Umbridge)
  3. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 17 (Educational Decree Number Twenty-Four)