- Confirmed by JK Rowling
- Very confident in its accuracy
- Moderately confident in its accuracy
- Not very confident
- Confirmed false, but I felt like posting it anyway.
Damocles (Belby?) - Inventor of the wolfsbane potion, uncle of Marcus Belby
- Greek courtier to Dionysius the Elder, tyrant of Syracuse, who according to legend was forced to sit at a banquet table under a sword suspended by a single hair to demonstrate the precariousness of a king's fortunes. No apparent etymological connection.
Dawlish - An Auror that accompanied Fudge when confronting Harry about his DA meetings.
- Dawlish is another character whose name was taken from a map -- it is the name of a seacoast town in Devon, near Exeter, where Jo attended university. (Thanks to Steve Vander Ark)
Dearborn, Caradoc - Member of the original Order of the Phoenix; missing and presumed dead (HPL).
- Caradoc (Caractacus) is called "The First British Hero". He and his brother led the anti-Roman campaign and managed to resist the invaders for a period of nearly nine years. --Britannia.com.
Dedalus Diggle - See "Diggle, Dedalus"
Deflation Draft - counteracts the Engorgement Charm
- "Deflate" is the opposite of "inflate".
Delacour, Fleur - Triwizard champion of Beauxbatons, part Veela.
- Her name separates into "Fleur De La Cour", which means in French "Flower of the Court", or noblewoman. (from AOL chat with J.K. Rowling)
Deletrius - used in the banishing spell
- "Deletum" is Latin for to destroy, wipe out, or erase.
Demelza - made the Gryffindor Quidditch team in book 6
- The Demelza House is one of actor Daniel Radcliffe's favourite charities.
Demiguise - creature capable of turning invisible
- "Demi" means "partial". "Guise" means "outward appearance". This creature's name is probably a play on "disguise", which is to conceal one's identity.
Densaugeo - curse to make your victim's front teeth grow
- "Dens" is Latin for "teeth". "Augeo" is Latin for "to enlarge".
Dervish and Bange's - shop in Hogsmeade
- "Dervish" is a class of Sufi Muslim devotees. The Mevlevi Order of Dervishes in Turkey have gained public attention by their practice of whirling dance, to reach religious ecstasy and connection with Allah. The name of "Dervish and Bange's" conjures the rather amusing (though culturally insensitive) mental image of a Dervish whirling about and banging into something.
Diagon Alley - Home to many wizarding shops.
- Just as Knockturn Alley becomes "Nocturnally" (Knockturnally) when you put the two words together, Diagon alley becomes "Diagonally". According to Gretchen, "Diagon Alley" is actually "diagonal ley." A ley line is a line connecting ancient sites of Britain and was thought to have magical powers.
Diffindo - Harry uses this spell in Gof to cause Cedric's bag to rip open, then again in HBP to remove the covers of his copies of "Advanced Potion Making"
- "Diffundo" is Latin for "to cleave, split".
Diggle, Dedalus - made shooting stars fly over Kent, and met Harry in the Leaky Cauldron
- Daedalus once made wax and feather wings to escape a labrynth he himself built. (Greek Mythology)
Diggory, Cedric - popular Hufflepuff quidditch captain and seeker, as well as Hogwarts Triwizard Champion. Murdered by Wormtail on Lord Voldemort's order.
- This is a definite stretch, but in "Ivanhoe", Cedric is the owner of the hall where a large competition takes place. He and a woman named Rowena are later captured and held captive in Torquilstone.
- "Diggory" is possibly a nod to C.S. Lewis. In The Magician's Nephew (prequel to The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe), one of the main characters is a boy named Digory Kirke. The following description is from Narnia.com: "...Digory has a firm sense of right and wrong and is a very good friend to have when the going gets tough. However, he is also very strongwilled..."
There was a very creepy parallel brought to my attention by Rosemary on HP4GU. In chapter 15 of Philosopher's Stone, Ronan says "Always the innocent are the first victims". At the time, we thought he was referring to the unicorn, but is it possible that he was referring to a certain boy with unicorn tail hair in his wand? The "innocent first victim" is none other than Cedric Diggory.
Dissendium - spell to open the one-eyed crone's hump in one of the passages to Hogsmeade
- It could come from "dissect", which means to cut open.
Divination - fortune-telling class
- The art of act of fortelling future events or revealing knowlege by means of augury (a sign or omen) or alleged supernatural agency.
Dobby - House elf. Worked for the Malfoys before being freed by Harry Potter. Now works (for money!) in the kitchens of Hogwarts.
- A "Dobby" is an alternate name for a Brownie in parts of Yorkshire and Lancashire. For detail about brownies, see the entry for House Elf.
Doxy - "biting fairy"
- Most frequently, "doxy" is used as a slang word for a woman of ill-repute, or a mistress. In parts of western England, it's also used as a pet name for babies. I can certainly fathom a connection from the first definition to Jo's creation, but it doesn't have a place on a family-friendly website.
Doxycide - used to paralyze doxies
- Similar to insecticide. The "-cide" ending means "to kill".
Dr. Filibuster's Fabulous No-Heat Wet-Start Fireworks
- The filibuster is an obstructionist tactic, such as prolonged speechmaking, used to delay legislative action. A Filibuster Firework would be a firework that kept going off long after a conventional firework would have stopped, just as a filibuster speech is one that keeps going long after a conventional speech would have stopped. Point of interest: Filibuster was also an adventurer engaged in private warfare abroad. From "filibustero", Spanish for "freebooter" (pirate/plunderer).
Draco Malfoy - See "Malfoy, Draco"
Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus - on the Hogwarts crest.
- Translates to "Never Tickle a Sleeping Dragon" in Latin, a wizardly equivalent of "Let sleeping dogs lie." JKR said that she wanted a very solid, practical motto for Hogwarts as opposed to the strict "onwards and upwards" mottoes of the schools she attended.
The Draught of Living Death - powerful sleeping potion made of asphodel and wormwood.
- Asphodel - common name applied to certain flowering plants native mostly to the Mediterranean region. In Greek mythology, there is an area in Hades (the underworld) called the "field of Asphodel".
Wormwood - common name for a perennial herb or shrubby plant of the family of composite flowers. The leaves and flowers contain the terpene thujone, an aromatic, bitter, toxic substance.
Dudley Dursley - See "Dursley, Dudley"
Dugbog - marsh-dwelling creature that resembles driftwood
- I'm not sure about the "dug" bit, but a "bog" is similar to a swamp.
Dumbledore, Albus Percival Wulfric Brian - Headmaster at Hogwarts.
- "Albus" is Latin for "white" (indicating that he's on the side of light) and "wisdom." Also "Albion" is an old name for "Britain."
"Dumbledore" is an old English word for "bumblebee". JKR says that it "seemed to suit the headmaster, because one of his passions is music and I imagined him walking around humming to himself."
Durmstrang - another European wizarding school, probably in Norway, Finland, Sweden, or the European part of Russia. Formerly run by death eater Igor Karkaroff, it places emphasis on the dark arts.
- Probably a spoonerism of "sturm und drang", which in German means "storm and stress". Sturm und Drang was a German literary movement in 1765-85 that arose in reaction to traditional authority and the prevailing formality of literary style.
Dursley, Dudley - Harry's bullying cousin
- According to Encyclopedia Potterica (now defunct), "Dudley" is a play on "dud", which is British slang for "a boring person".
- Dursley is a small town in Britain. A surprising number of character names are taken from maps; "Snape" for example.
Dursley, Petunia Evans - Harry's maternal aunt.
- Both Petunia and her sister, Lily, are named after flowers. The petunia symbolizes anger and resentment. Compare with the lily, which symbolizes purity and innocence.
- "Dursley" is a small town in Britain.
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