Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 700x90

Percival Graves[6] was an Auror, Director of Magical Security and head of MACUSA's Department of Magical Law Enforcement.

At some point prior to 6 December 1926, his identity was assumed by Gellert Grindelwald using Human Transfiguration.[7] It is unknown if he was killed or kept in captivity during this time.

Physical appearance

When Gellert Grindelwald Transfigured himself into Percival in December 1926, he was described as an early middle-aged, good-looking man wearing elegant clothes.[8]

Personality and traits

As the Director of Magical Security, Percival Graves was likely highly professional and determined.

Magical abilities and skills

Graves was a highly skilled wizard, and formerly one of the most distinguished members of the Investigative Team. While Grindelwald was impersonating Graves, he did not arouse any suspicion when effectively performing feats of immense magical power, a testament to Graves's exceptional power and skill.

  • Auror skills: Percival Graves served with distinction as an Auror with the Major Investigation Department; given how he was deemed sufficiently good at his job to merit a series of prestigious promotions and even the confidence of President Seraphina Picquery, it is safe to say that his skill presumably surpassed most of the other Aurors of MACUSA, which speaks for his considerable abilities, seen as how only being an Auror in the first place is a mark of superior magical ability.
  • Duelling: At a point in which he was still maintain his cover as Percival Graves, Gellert Grindelwald felt at liberty to best the former but still highly-competent Auror Porpentina Goldstein, deflecting her spells with 'perfect ease', his reactions 'marvellous, astounding'; though it was actually Grindelwald doing the spellwork, it is likely it was consistent with what the real Graves would be capable of in a similar situation.
  • Wandless and Nonverbal magic: While impersonating Graves, Gellert Grindelwald openly demonstrated a mastery at using magic without speaking the incantation out loud and without the use of a wand, even both simultaneously, something widely regarded as advanced and often difficult to perform. As this did not seem to attracting any suspicion, those are likely abilities the real Graves would be capable of.
  • Apparition: Percival Graves was capable of apparating.
  • Magical Law Enforcement: Graves was presumably highly knowledgeable about wizarding law enforcement, seeing as he occupied the senior MACUSA posts of Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement and Director of Magical Security. As a former Auror, he would also have been highly trained and skilled with defensive charms, counter-curses and on know how to restrain criminals without attracting the attention of the non-magical population.


Percival Graves wand
  • Wand: Despite having prodigious skill with wandless magic, Graves still possessed and made use of a wand. The wand's specifications are unknown, but it shows characteristics of being a Thiago Quintana creation.
  • Polyjuice flask: Used for holding Polyjuice Potion. However, this is just speculation.
  • Collar pins: These were shaped as scorpions and inlaid with green jewels.


In French, the name Percival means "valley piercer; piercer of the valley; one who attacks through the valley". In Greek, the name means "destroyer" and is related to Perseus, a hero of Greek mythology considered the greatest Greek hero and slayer of monsters before Heracles.

Percival is also the name of one of the Knights of the Round Table in Arthurian legend and who was the original hero in the quest for the Holy Grail before being replaced in later literature by Galahad (a name and origin he shares with Percy Weasley).

The surname Graves is of both English/Anglo-Saxon and French origin. In Anglo-Saxon terms, it is derived from the baptismal name Reeve (which itself means "representative; herd; monger; maker; hewer; smith; wright") and means "son of Reeve". As an occupational name, it means "manager" or "overseer." In French, the name originates from an old family of the southern region of Languedoc, but could also derive from the Old French word "grave", which meant "gravel." It also refers to a place where dead remains (typically human) are buried, referring to death.

Percival Graves' name is almost identical to that of Richard Perceval Graves, an English biographer, poet, and lecturer best known for his three-volume biography of his uncle Robert Graves, who was responsible for the modern (but false) concept of the Celtic Tree Calendar (on which wandlore is based).

Behind the scenes

  • Gellert Grindelwald transfigured as Percival Graves is portrayed in

    Percival Graves as LEGO Minifigures

    the film inspired by Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Colin Farrell.[9]
  • Graves' story was similar to that of Alastor Moody during Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, though Moody was ultimately rescued and it is unclear if Graves was already killed.
  • Graves was possibly an accomplished Occlumens, as he necessarily would have to be, lest he wanted classified information in his possession to be accessed by employees without the proper clearance for it such as Queenie Goldstein, inadvertently or otherwise. Also, when Gellert Grindelwald used Occlumency to prevent her from learning he was not the real Graves, Queenie was not suspicious, suggesting that the real Graves' mind likewise used to be inaccessible to her.
  • The 1991 comedy film King Ralph featured another character with the same name, Lord Percival Graves. Lord Graves was portrayed by John Hurt, who also appeared in the Harry Potter film series as Garrick Ollivander.


Notes and references

  1. According to J.K. Rowling's screenplay, Graves was "early middle-age" during the events of the first Fantastic Beasts movie. No one below the age of forty would be considered "middle-aged".
  2. 2.0 2.1 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 116 states that when Grindelwald transforms from being Graves, he "no longer" has "dark" hair and that he was now "blond and blue-eyed", implying his hair and eye colour were different.
  3. EW - Fantastic Beasts: First look at Ezra Miller's mysterious character
  4. Writing by J.K. Rowling: "The Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA)" at Pottermore
  5. 'Fantastic Beasts' Character Descriptions Revealed
  6. Announcement Trailer for “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” to Be Unveiled Worldwide on December 15th
  7. - Welcome to my new website!
  8. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay - Scene 5
  9. "Colin Farrell Joins ‘Harry Potter’ Spinoff ‘Fantastic Beasts’" at

Magical Congress of the United States of America

Josiah Jackson (1693-?) · Charity Wilkinson · Thornton Harkaway (c. 1760) · Able Fleming · Elizabeth McGilliguddy (c. 1777) · Emily Rappaport (c. 1790) · Seraphina Picquery (1920-1928) · Samuel G. Quahog (c. 2014)


Abraham Potter · Berthilde Roche · Carlos Lopez · Cormac O'Brien · E. A. Limus · Gondulphus Graves · Helmut Weiss · M. L. Minus · M. P. Carneirus · Mary Jauncey · Mungo MacDuff · Percival Graves · Porpentina Goldstein · Robert Grimsditch · Theodard Fontaine · Wilhelm Fischer

Other positions

Apparition Examiner · Auror Commissioner · Captain of Aurors · Chief Auror · Chief of Staff · Director of Magical Security · Executioner · Federal Identity Commissioner · Federal Wand Permit Officer · Keeper of Treasure and Dragots · Obliviator ·Surveillor of Activity

Other employees

Abernathy · Albert Perschky · Aristotle Twelvetrees · Bernadette · Beryl · Cecily · E. A. Limus · F. Wakefield · Irene Kneedander · J. Ward · L. O'Sullivan · Magali Crowe · Paloma Proudfoot · Queenie Goldstein · Red · Ruby · Sam · Unidentified executioner (I) · Unidentified executioner (II) · Y. Blishen


Body for Protection of Magical Species · Department of Aurors · Department of Magical Law Enforcement · Department of No-Maj Misinformation · Department of Unidentifiable Magical Objects · Federal Bureau of Covert Vigilance and No-Maj Obliviation · MACUSA Surveillance Wizarding Resources Department · Magical Cleaning Department · Major Investigation Department · Office for Magic Relations and Education · US Auror Divisions · Wizarding Resources Department


Death Cell · Great Meeting Chamber · Lobby · No-Maj Fraternisation sub-division · Pentagram Office · Percival Graves' office · Register Office · Typing Pool · Wand Permit Office · Young Wizards Daycare Center