At least some content in this article is derived from information featured in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (film). As such, spoilers will be present within the article.
At least some content in this article is derived from information featured in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. As such, spoilers will be present within the article.
- "I have visited lairs, burrows and nests across five continents, observed the curious habits of magical beasts in a hundred countries, witnessed their powers, gained their trust and, on occasion, beaten them off with my travelling kettle."
- —Newton Scamander[src]
Newton Artemis Fido "Newt" Scamander, O.M. (Second Class), (b. 24 February 1897) was a famed Magizoologist and author of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Early in life, Scamander developed an interest in magical Creatures, influenced by his mother's breeding of hippogriffs. He attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he was sorted into Hufflepuff House, and was sentenced to expulsion, though Albus Dumbledore protested his innocence.
Scamander joined the Ministry of Magic, spending two years in the Office for House-Elf Relocation before joining the Beast Division. In 1918, he was commissioned by Augustus Worme of Obscurus Books to write Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The book became a best-seller, making Scamander a respected expert in the field of Magizoology. He married Porpentina Goldstein, and they had at least one son. By the beginning of the 1990s, he was retired and living in Dorset.
Early life and schooling
Newton Artemis Fido "Newt" Scamander was born on 24 February 1897 somewhere in England. He had at least one sibling, an older brother, Theseus. He developed an interest in magical creatures at an early age, as his mother was a breeder of hippogriffs. Scamander would regularly dismember Horklumps in his bedroom at age seven.
Before beginning education at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in 1908, Newt would have purchased his first wand, likely from Ollivanders, and was sorted into Hufflepuff on 1 September. During his time there, he enjoyed studying magical creatures. He developed a friendship with Leta Lestrange, a fellow student who shared both his interest in magical beasts, as well as his feeling of being an outsider.
In 1913, one of Leta's experiments involving a Jarvey went too far, endangering the life of another student. It also violated laws prohibiting the possession of this creature. Rather than see his good friend expelled, Newt took the blame for Leta's actions, and was thus sentenced to be expelled from Hogwarts in her place. This left Newt bitter, but still much in love with Leta.
However, Albus Dumbledore, Newt's Transfiguration teacher at the time, argued strongly on his behalf. It is unclear whether the expulsion was enforced or not, or if it was temporary or permanent. However, he was allowed to keep his wand.
World War I
Sometime during the First World War from 1914 - 1918, Scamander served on the Eastern Front in a confidential Ministry of Magic programme to wrangle Ukrainian Ironbellys. The programme was ultimately cancelled as the dragons only responded to Scamander and tried to eat everyone else.
At the Ministry of Magic
- "...tedious to the extreme..."
- —Newt Scamander on his years at the Office for House-Elf Relocation[src]
Scamander joined the Ministry of Magic's Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures. He spent two years in the Office for House-Elf Relocation before transferring to the Beast Division, where his extensive knowledge of magical creatures led to a rapid series of promotions, propelling him forward as a magizoologist, a career with which the Scamander family are not very impressed.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- "It would take months to contradict every other wild assertion in Ms. Skeeter's book... it is true that I was the first person ever to capture Gellert Grindelwald, and also true that Albus Dumbledore was something more than a schoolteacher to me. More than this, I cannot say, without fear of breaching the Official Magical Secrets Act or, more importantly, the confidences that Dumbledore, most private of men, placed in me."
- —Newt Scamander describing his trip to America[src]
In 1918, Augustus Worme of Obscurus Books commissioned Scamander to write the first edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. As a lowly Ministry employee earning only two Sickles a week at the time, Scamander jumped at the chance for extra money and the opportunity to spend his summers travelling the world.
Scamander travelled to a hundred countries across five continents researching his book, observing many magical creatures. He learned about their abilities, gained their trust, and occasionally beat them with his travelling kettle if they got too dangerous. At one point, he met an Obscurial in Sudan, and although the host died, he managed to contain her Obscurus within his magically-expanded suitcase.
Newt began a year-long trip to document magical creatures and their natural habitats in 1925. After leaving Equatorial Guinea, Scamander arrived in New York on 6 December, 1926, for what was supposed to be a brief stopover. However, when Jacob Kowalski, a Muggle, accidentally opened his suitcase, several creatures escaped and the episode turned into an incident of major proportions (as magical and non-magical relations in the United States were already frail, due in part to the presence of a Muggle fanatical extremist group, the New Salem Philanthropic Society), containing the incident required the intervention of the Magical Congress of the United States of America.
While in New York, Scamander also met his future wife, Tina Goldstein, as well as her sister, Queenie. During the quest to recover his escaped creatures, Newt had to confront another Obscurus, originating from Credence Barebone, but it was vanquished by MACUSA. On the morning of 8 December, he helped to defeat Percival Graves and revealed that he was none other than Dark Wizard and international criminal Gellert Grindelwald. He helped to prevent the wide-scale exposure of the wizarding world but employing the help of Frank the Thunderbird to create a rain laced with Swooping Evil venom, whose obliviating properties erased the bad memories of the Muggle citizens of New York, including his friend Jacob Kowalski.
One week later, on 15 December, Scamander bumped into Kowalski while he was on his way to his job at the Moreton Dale Canning Factory and switched suitcases with him, leaving him a collection of silver Occamy eggshells and a letter instructing him to use the shells as collateral for a bank loan to start his bakery.
First published in 1927, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was a bestseller. It became an approved textbook at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and, by the mid-1990s, was in its fifty-second edition. A launch party was held on 19 March at Flourish and Blotts.
It was rumoured he was sent to New York by his former teacher Professor Dumbledore to spy on the government there and find out any new information about Grindelwald's whereabouts. In 2017, Newt would deny the claims, saying he thought it was absurd he would pose as a magizoologist to achieve that, but admitted it was a bad idea to take a suitcase of creatures to New York.
However, Newt added he would in fact become involved in the hunt for Grindelwald later, and that he played an actual part in that hunt over the next two decades. In 1927, Newt travelled to Paris to help defeat Grindelwald, when he was actually approached by Dumbledore following Newt's part in the initial capture of Grindelwald in New York from which he had later escaped.
Ministry work and awards
- "Regarded as the world authority on magical creatures, Newt Scamander is the author of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which has been an approved textbook at Hogwarts since its publication in 1927 and can be found in most wizarding households."
- —Scamander's Chocolate Frog Card[src]
In 1947, Scamander was responsible for the inception of the Werewolf Register, and, in 1965, created the Ban on Experimental Breeding, which he considered his proudest moment. Scamander also worked extensively with the Dragon Research and Restraint Bureau, which led him on expeditions all over the world, allowing him to collect information for new editions of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
By the beginning of the 1990s, he was retired and living in Dorset with his wife and their three pet Kneazles, Hoppy, Milly, and Mauler, but was known to study Fire Slugs in the Brazilian rainforest. At some point during the 1993-1994 school year, he visited Hogwarts, possibly to discuss the printing of a version of Fantastic Beasts for Muggle audiences. Following his grandson's marriage to Luna Lovegood, Scamander became the great-grandfather of twin boys, Lorcan and Lysander.
Newt was still alive in 2017, writing a foreword to a new edition of his book, in which he confirmed the public belief that he was indeed the first wizard ever to capture Gellert Grindelwald during his travel to New York in 1926. In the same foreword, he finally confirmed that while he was not sent to New York by Dumbledore, he played an active part in defeating Grindelwald over the next two decades. He was prevented from sharing any information between then and now, but the declassified documents were now beginning to be released, and he would be free to talk about them when they were.
Personality and traits
- "My philosophy is that worrying means you suffer twice."
- —Newt Scamander[src]
A man of principle, he was not the sort of man to discriminate against people based on their heritage or beliefs. He was also seen to be courteous with non-magical individuals like Mary Lou Barebone and Jacob Kowalski, the latter of which with whom he formed a close friendship. He was also morally astute, expressing shock and discontent at morbidness and cruelty, such as the idea of using the Obscurus that killed a child for personal gain. Despite this Newt himself admitted that he showed poor judgement in his youth. An example is when he brought his thunderbird to the United States to set him free, let alone an entire suitcase full of magical creatures, given MACUSA's curse-to-kill policy at the time on such creatures.
Magical abilities and skills
Newt's primary skill was his deep connection to multiple magical creatures and ability to track them down and tame them effectively. He was also a well versed writer and a tireless worker, making dozens of notes on every creature he finds. Newt also dealt with hazardous situations well, having faced some of the most dangerous beasts in the world as well as Dark Wizards.
- Care of Magical Creatures: Newt was interested in Magizoology from a young age and throughout the years, he gained knowledge of a wide variety of creatures from all over the world. He was awarded a famous Wizard Card and an Order of Merlin for services to Magizoology.
- Communicating with animals: Newt was shown to have a particular way with animals in a manner most Wizards don't. He possesses an innate ability to communicate and bond with beasts of all shapes, such as Thunderbirds and Bowtruckles — treating the latter much like a parent would a child. He is also capable of using beasts such as the Swooping Evil to aid him in combat, and can control it to a degree, despite it being a relatively dangerous beast.
- Charms: Newt displays potent skill in Charms, able to Summon an egg from across a room with a man still holding onto it, and repair the entire upper half of Jacob Kowalski's apartment in mere seconds. Newt also used the Revelio Charm to bypass Grindelwald's Human Transfiguration and unmask him to MACUSA. He also performed an expansive Undetectable Extension Charm on the interior of his suitcase creating enough space to hold many magical creatures in replicas of their native habitats. He also displayed a command of Atmospheric Charms, creating weather conditions such as hot deserts and frozen snowscapes. Furthermore, his skill with charms allowed him to create a magical bubble capable of containing and sustaining an Obscurus, even after the death of its host.
- Apparition: Newt was able to successfully Apparate in many different situations, allowing him to avoid attacks from an Obscurus as well as Gellert Grindelwald.
- Duelling: Beguiling his peaceful disposition, Newt is a surprisingly highly capable duelist, adept at hexes, using the Full Body-Bind Curse on No-Maj Gilbert Bingley upon nearly being arrested. Later he was, with some good help from his Swooping Evil, able to evade capture by multiple trained MACUSA Aurors. Newt was even able to briefly defend himself from Gellert Grindelwald, arguably one of the most powerful dark wizards of all time, and survive the encounter, proving his skills in martial magic.
- Potions: In his books, he wrote down hints how parts of magical creatures could be used in potions. He also experimented with novel potions such as uses for Swooping Evil venom.
- History of Magic: Newt also had knowledge of magical history, especially Magizoology. A whole chapter of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was devoted to the definitions of beasts, beings, and spirits and how the definitions have evolved in past centuries.
- Muggle Studies: Newt had studied how Muggles reacted to magical creatures and how beasts included in muggle fairy tales, like fairies, differed from real ones. He also knew about Muggles' awareness of Diricawl and that they believed that they hunted it to extinction. A whole chapter in his book was about Muggle awareness of beasts. He also claims to Jacob that the bodies of Muggles react differently to magic and gives him some armour when dealing with a Erumpent for protection.
- Nonverbal magic: Newt was able to summon an Occamy egg held in Jacob Kowalski's hand without saying the incantation, ending up sending Jacob flying towards him at great speed. He also did not speak an incantation when turning a window opening into a jelly-like substance to trap his Niffler, which shattered after he took him off, or when he used a mind-altering spell, possibly the Confundus Charm or the False memory charm on muggles that saw his creatures break out of Jacob Kowalski's apartment to make them believe a gas leak was the cause of the destruction. He also demonstrated being able to wordlessly use magic in combat, such as when he conjured a lasso of a gelatinous substance to restrain Grindelwald after distracting him with his Swooping Evil.
- Wandlore: Newt had some knowledge of the properties of wand cores, including Thunderbird tail feathers.
- Transfiguration: Newt could cast the advanced Revelio Charm, which he used to untransfigure Gellert Grindelwald.
- Suitcase: A magical suitcase enchanted with an Undetectable Extension Charm in which he held a number of beasts while he travelled. He could hide the contents from Muggles by flipping a switch on the case. In 1926, whilst visiting the United States of America, the beasts in Newt's suitcase escaped, whereupon he was accosted by Percival Graves, a powerful MACUSA Auror and right-hand man of the American wizarding community's leader, Seraphina Picquery. The suitcase contains its own world with many different habitats for each creature. It also contains a place for Newt. Tina takes the suitcase with Newt inside it to MACUSA headquarters where she tells them about the creatures that have escaped.
- Passport: Newt possessed a muggle passport used during his worldwide travels.
- Newton is derived from the Old English place name meaning "new town" and was originally a surname. The most eminent historical figure with this surname is Sir Isaac Newton, who, while known largely for his contributions to the fields of mathematics and physics, also wrote many works on alchemy. Some of his writings suggest he was attempting to create a Philosopher's Stone, inspired by the real Nicolas Flamel.
- Artemis (Ἄρτεμις) was a goddess in Greek mythology, the daughter of Zeus and Leto, and the twin sister of Apollo. She is the goddess of the moon, hunting, the wilderness, and the gift of taming wild animals. In myth, Artemis spends most of her time hunting, which she has in common with Newt, although he seeks wild animals for conservation rather than sport.
- Fido is of Latin origin, meaning "I trust" or "faithful". The name Fido is most commonly associated with being a common name for pet dogs in many countries.
- Scamander is very similar to the word salamander, which is a type of real-world amphibian. In the wizarding world, salamanders are small lizards which feed on flames. Newts are also a type of salamander.
- Scamander (Σκάμανδρος) is a river god in Greek mythology. The Scamander River (now known as the Karamenderes) flows over where the Trojan War was fought, according to Homer's Iliad.
Behind the scenes
- Newt is portrayed by Eddie Redmayne in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them film series.
- A younger Newt will appear in the second film of the Fantastic Beasts series.
- Newt Scamander is a playable character in the LEGO Dimensions video game and appears as part of the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them themed LEGO Dimensions Story set with Eddie Redmayne reprising his role as the character's voice.
- In the Harry Potter films, a portrait of Scamander is present in the Headmaster's office, thus implying that he was a past Headmaster of Hogwarts and that he was dead by 1992, as the portrait first appears in Chamber of Secrets. However, the Pottermore Timeline of the Wizarding World (see it here) establishes that Scamander was still alive by 2015, thus making the idea of Scamender as dead-by-1992 headmaster non-canon, as author J.K. Rowling has stated that all the Headmaster portraits in the office are of past Headmasters who are deceased.
- Interestingly, the portrait of Newt Scamander mentioned above bears the monogram of Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528). Dürer's dates to not match those of Scamander the slightest. The portrait itself seems to have been based on a 17th-century portrait of Archibald Campbell, 1st Marquess of Argyll, by David Scougall
- In 2001, J. K. Rowling published a real version of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them for Comic Relief, a UK based charity event. The book was written from an in-universe perspective, and Scamander was credited as the "author" of the work. The title was updated in 2017 after the character appeared as the star character in the film named after it directly, the first in a series.
- Newt was the first known Hufflepuff introduced in the series, although this information was not revealed until Pottermore.
- When Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone was originally translated into German, Newt's name was translated as "Lurch" Scamander. Lurch is a German word for amphibians, a family of animals the newt is also part of. When Fantastic Beasts was translated, his original first name was untranslated instead and Lurch was one of his middle names. This makes his full name in the German version "Newton Artemis Fido Lurch Scamander".
- Similarly, in the French version of the Harry Potter books, he is named "Norbert Dragonneau" (Dragonneau meaning baby dragon), a possible foreshadowing to Norberta. In the translation of Fantastic Beasts, however, it is said that this is actually a pen name, and the book uses his original name the rest of the time. Even though it's a pen name, the name "Norbert Dragonneau" is used in the French and French Canadian versions of the first film of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
- While never specifically confirmed to play Quidditch, when Mary Lou Barebone asks him if he is a "seeker of truth," he replies "I'm more of a chaser, really."
- While using the swooping evil to catch Grindelwald in the film version, the screenplay for the films states that he uses his wand.
- Originally the visual artists crafted expansive environments for all the creatures in Newt's case; however, J.K. Rowling informed that he wasn't that great of a wizard and they scaled them down to be backdrops creating a sufficient semblance of the creatures' natural habitats.
- Strangely, despite Newt being shown to be a loyal ally of Dumbledore as well as having played several key roles against Grindelwald, there is no mention of Newt having participated in either the First or Second Wizarding Wars against Lord Voldemort. He does not appear in the photograph of the original Order of the Phoenix and is not mentioned by Alastor Moody when showing the photograph to Harry. It is possible, however, that Newt attended Dumbledore's funeral in The Half Blood Prince and was simply not named, as it is stated that Harry did not recognise the majority of wizards who attended.
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (First mentioned)
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (video game) (Appears on a Famous Wizard Card)
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (film) (Appears in portrait(s))
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (video game) (Appears on a Famous Wizard Card)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (film) (Appears on the Marauder's Map)
- LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 (Appears in portrait(s))
- LEGO Harry Potter
- LEGO Dimensions
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (film) (First appearance)
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay
- Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
- The Case of Beasts: Explore the Film Wizardry of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- Inside the Magic: The Making of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Character Guide
- The Beasts: Cinematic Guide (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them)
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Newt Scamander: Cinematic Guide
- Harry Potter: The Exhibition (Appears in portrait(s))
- The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Appears in portrait(s))
- J.K. Rowling: A Year in the Life (Mentioned only (not by name))
- Pottermore (Mentioned only)
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 Tweet from the official Fantastic Beasts Twitter account (see this image)
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Inside the Magic: The Making of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - "Hailing from England" in the Newt Scamander section.
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them only identifies Newt's mother as a witch, so his father's blood status is unknown. Also, The Sacred Twenty Eight directory, published in the 1930s, does not list the Scamander family as Pure-blood; however, other pure-blood families such as the Potters are not listed either so the directory is not definitive.
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 60
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 Since Rolf Scamander kept Newt's family name, it can be presumed that he is the son of a son of Newt's (if he were the son of a daughter of Newt's, he might more likely bear whichever his father's surname was, and not Scamander).
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 JK Rowling Web Chat transcript
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 J.K. Rowling: A Year in the Life (see this image)
- ↑ https://www.snitchseeker.com/harry-potter-news/fantastic-beasts-the-crimes-of-grindelwald-clip-shows-newt-at-hogwarts-flamel-109724/
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Pottermore introduction for Hufflepuffs (archived here)
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Magical Movie Handbook (see this image)
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 92
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 13.2 The Case of Beasts: Explore the Film Wizardry of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (see this image)
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 "EXCLUSIVE: J.K. Rowling tells SnitchSeeker about Newt's expulsion from Hogwarts, more"
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 65 - "GRAVES: You were thrown out of Hogwarts for endangering human life-"
- ↑ "Fantastic Beasts and J.K Rowling's Wizarding World" on Youtube - "Newt is this oddball who managed to get himself expelled from Hogwarts"
- ↑ "Who is Leda Lestrange? 'Fantastic Beasts' Is Only The Start For The New Character, Says Director David Yates" from Bustle
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 65
- ↑ J. K. Rowling has stated on two occasions that Newt was expelled from Hogwarts, once in a documentary about the making of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and another time in a video interview with SnitchSeeker. However, on a prop document featured in the first Fantastic Beasts film and reproduced in The Case of Beasts: Explore the Film Wizardry of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, it is stated that "the expulsion was never enforced" because Albus Dumbledore's intervention "result[ed] in his name being cleared." Miraphora Mina, one of the graphic artists who worked on the film, revealed in an interview that Rowling was consulted during the creation of the props to ensure the accuracy of text on them. Thus, it cannot be conclusively determined whether Newt was actually expelled at this point, as it is not known which canon supersedes the other. It is possible that J. K. Rowling's statements that Newt was expelled were a deliberate attempt at withholding information to prevent spoilers.
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 50
- ↑ The Beasts: Cinematic Guide (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them) (see this image)
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Newt Scamander: Cinematic Guide (see this image)
- ↑ Inside the Magic: The Making of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - Newt Scamander
- ↑ Collider.com. Things to know about Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- ↑ 25.0 25.1 "First 'Fantastic Beasts' trailer arriving December 15, first synopsis released!" at Hypable
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 116
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 118
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 121 is a week after Jacob was obliviated on the dawn of 8 December.
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 122 is the next day after Newt leaves Jacob the occamy shells, which is said in Scene 121 to be a week after Jacob was obliviated on the dawn of 8 December.
- ↑ https://www.facebook.com/fantasticbeastsmovie/posts/1602247433167076
- ↑ 31.0 31.1 31.2 31.3 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2017 edition)
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
- ↑ Harry Potter Limited Edition - A Guide to the Graphic Arts Department: Posters, Prints, and Publications from the Harry Potter Films
- ↑ 34.0 34.1 Famous Wizard Card
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (film) (see this image)
- ↑ 'Fantastic Beasts' Character Descriptions Revealed
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (film)
- ↑ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 47
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ "Newton's Dark Secrets" documentary by PBS
- ↑ https://www.pottermore.com/news/open-casting-call-for-young-people-announced-for-fantastic-beasts-and-where-to-find-them-sequel
- ↑ ARTICLE - Add to Template:PM at Pottermore
- ↑ J.K. Rowling's Wizarding World: Movie Magic Volume Two: Curious Creatures