The Harry Potter finale was so full of magical action sequences that you’d be forgiven for forgetting one of them: the torrent of Fiendfyre that tears through the Room of Requirement thanks to Gregory Goyle’s ill-fated attempt to try a spell he had no hope of controlling. What a fool.
But this particular Harry Potter scene is actually even more tragic than it was for the Harry Potter villains caught up within it. As one fan on Reddit noted, this inferno erased hundreds of years of history in one fell swoop. Hogwarts students for generations had used the “Room of Hidden Things” to conceal secret items. All of these things were presumably destroyed in the fire.
In the movie itself, we’re mostly just concerned about the fact that Rowena Ravenclaw’s diadem is completely annihilated, removing another of the Horcruxes from Voldemort‘s defenses. But looking back, the destruction of the Room of Hidden Things is really sad.
On Reddit, Mickey_MickeyG wrote: “It’s countless memories and probably borderline endless historical artifacts from Hogwarts and its student body and all of the memories were probably totally destroyed. Not to mention that we never get any info on if a spell of that caliber did any damage to the room itself. Can’t help but think about how callous and idiotic it was to even cast that spell in the first place.”
To be fair, “callous and idiotic” is pretty much the perfect description of Goyle (it’s Crabbe who casts the dangerous Harry Potter spell in the book).
It’s certainly true that the Room of Hidden Things held a lot of secrets and memories, which went up in smoke when the Fiendfyre ripped through its stacks of objects. Or did they? The Room of Hidden Things was active and unburned in the mobile game Harry Potter: Magic Awakened, which is set around 2008 – a decade after our favorite Harry Potter characters left school.
We don’t know a great deal about the hidden inner magic of Hogwarts, so it’s possible that there was some sort of protection upon the room to keep its contents safe. That didn’t save the diadem, though, so we’re not convinced we should read much into the game when one of the franchise’s best movies definitively showed the room filling with flames.
That leaves us forced to conclude that the contents of the Room of Hidden Things are gone forever. From the pivotal Vanishing Cabinet that facilitated the Battle of the Astronomy Tower to Severus Snape‘s annotated potions textbook, everything is now dust. What a sobering thought. Sorry folks, we’re usually more cheerful.
For more from the Wizarding World, learn about one Harry Potter star’s hilarious reaction to his death scene and find out how you can watch all of the Harry Potter movies in order. Alternatively, learn what we know so far about the Harry Potter TV series release date.
We’ve also looked ahead to new movies in the franchise and wondered if the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child movie release date might reunite us with the original Harry Potter cast. We’ve got our potions brewing.
The creator of the Harry Potter series, JK Rowling, has made a number of transphobic remarks on social media in recent years. If you’d like to learn more about transgender equality or lend your support, here are two charities we encourage you to visit: the National Center for Transgender Equality in the US, and Mermaids in the UK.