Harry Potter author JK Rowling has cleared up some misconceptions about the locations that inspired her iconic fantasy series.
For years, certain places across the UK and other countries have been associated with the Wizarding World, claiming that Rowling visited or was influenced by them while writing her novels.
However, Rowling has now discussed in a lengthy Twitter thread that many of these just aren’t true, as well as revealing some of the locations that really were pivotal.
The author cites her old flat in Clapham Junction as the real “birthplace” of Harry Potter and his fantastical adventures, as it was where she first started writing the series.
This is the true birthplace of Harry Potter, if you define 'birthplace' as the spot where I put pen to paper for the first time.* I was renting a room in a flat over what was then a sports shop. The first bricks of Hogwarts were laid in a flat in Clapham Junction. pic.twitter.com/HVORnPVboK— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 21, 2020
According to one fan, students at the University of Exeter have claimed that certain parts of Potter’s world come from local landmarks, but Rowling swiftly put an end to such speculation.
Perhaps most shocking of all, Rowling has never even visited quaint York high street The Shambles, which is frequently associated with her own Diagon Alley.
Well, looks like I've got a fight on my hands, because I've never seen or been to the Shambles… pic.twitter.com/txA98CK1hx— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 21, 2020
A recurring theme of the thread is that the inspiration for Harry Potter came less from the grand old buildings you might expect and more from less obvious sources…
Real Harry Potter inspiration alert: I walked past this sign every day on my way to work when I was living in Clapham . Much later - post-publication - I revisited the area & suddenly realised THIS was why 'Severus' had leapt into my head when thinking of a 1st name for Snape. pic.twitter.com/q5wzsQb3m9— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 23, 2020
It isn’t surprising that a lot of places want to be associated with Harry Potter, but anyone looking to tour the places that really inspired the Wizarding World should be careful sifting facts from fiction…
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