The Burrow

chapter three of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Fred, George, and Ron break Harry out of Privet Drive and fly him to the Burrow, where Harry sees a wizarding house for the first time. After Molly yells at her kids and they de-gnome the garden, Ron takes Harry up to his room, Harry thrilled to be there.

The Burrow, by NicoPony

Ron, Fred, and George seized Harry’s arms and pulled as hard as they could.


To Freedom, by reallycorking

Harry couldn’t believe it – he was free.


The Burrow, by haystax45

Lower and lower went the flying car.


The Burrow, by Keith James

“It’s wonderful,” said Harry happily, thinking of Privet Drive.


Ginny Spies Harry, by robin edwards

At that moment there was a diversion in the form of a small, red-headed figure in a long nightdress, who appeared in the kitchen, gave a small squeal, and ran out again.


Ronniekins, by Chantelle

“It’s a bit small,” said Ron quickly. “Not like that room you had with the Muggles. And I’m right underneath the ghoul in the attic; he’s always banging on the pipes and groaning….” But Harry, grinning widely, said, “This is the best house I’ve ever been in.” Ron’s ears went pink.


about the chapter


Something You May Not Have Noticed

By the time Harry’s all packed into the Weasleys’ flying car, the back seat is pretty darn full. After all, besides Harry and Ron, they’ve stuffed in his large trunk, Hedwig’s cage, various other belongings of Harry’s, and the bars that had once been fitted over Harry’s bedroom window. So why not simply put some of it in the trunk? Probably because it all fits with room to spare. The second time Harry rides in this car he’ll be surprised and impressed by its magically enlarged back seat. Making the real question, how the heck does he not notice it the first time he rides in it?

The Wizarding World

When Ron introduces Harry to the Chudley Cannons, he mentions that they’re ninth in the league. A quick check in Quidditch Through the Ages, which Harry checked out of the library during his first year, would reveal that the Cannons haven’t won a championship in a century – and that their official team motto is “Let’s all just keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best.” In fact, in their thirteen-team league, ninth is by far the highest we’ll ever see the Cannons place. And they even have ugly team robes. Poor Ron.

The Power of Magic

Despite having had a full year at Hogwarts, Harry doesn’t quite get many of the rules of magic; for instance, when he sees the flying car outside his window, he assumes that Fred, George, and Ron are doing something to make it fly, and that they’ll therefore get in trouble with the Ministry the way he did. What he doesn’t understand is that the magic was performed on the car long ago, by Mr. Weasley, giving it the ability to fly, and the kids don’t have to perform any magic on it at all. Things like this probably aren’t explicitly taught at Hogwarts; rather, they’re probably more of a cultural thing Harry will learn over time simply by being around it.

Some Things to Remember

During one of Arthur’s raids for the Ministry, a character (and presumably subject of the raid) named Mundungus Fletcher tries to curse him with his back turned. Mundungus will turn up again, and as Arthur nearly learned the hard way, he’s worth keeping an eye on.

Also, did Draco Malfoy really send Dobby to stop Harry’s going to Hogwarts? It seems likely enough to the kids, but if that’s the case, the house-elf concocted a pretty unnecessarily elaborate cover story. The pieces still aren’t quite adding up.

26 Responses to “The Burrow”

  1. Maybe the inside of the car is as large as you need it to be at the time you’re using it?

  2. That drawing of Ginny is adorable! To think she went from that to the fierce, brave, and defiant Ginny in the Deathly Hallows.

  3. I think that with the excitement of leaving Privet Drive Harry didn’t think about the car being magically expanded.

  4. Well the answer to the Quidditch one is simple. They must’ve been doing well that season. Book one is YEAR one, and book two is YEAR two. Two different Quidditch seasons I assume :)

  5. I was thinking like Kim. On the car idea.

  6. Regarding “The Wizarding World” , do we ever learn *why* Ron likes the Chudley Cannons so much?

  7. I agree with Kim and Phoebe as well! It’s the first thing that came to my head.

    Also, the whole Dobby situation is a bit dodgy. Maybe he was able to get out of the house by skirting house-elf binding laws, like Kreacher in HP5? Dobby mentions that he gets threatened like 5 times a day… maybe he took advantage of that? Who knows!

  8. Rachel, the Cannons are almost certainly closest to Ron’s house geographically, so he’s rooting for the local team just as many Muggles do.

    (More specifically, the Weasleys live in Ottery St. Catchpole, which doesn’t exist in the real world but is almost certainly based on Ottery St. Mary (a town that fits all the descriptions of Ottery St. Catchpole and is right near where Rowling attended university). Likewise, there isn’t a real Chudley, but there is a Chudleigh and it’s not far from Ottery St. Mary. Forgive my detail-obsessiveness, as I wrote the Atlas section for the Lexicon ;) ).

  9. “The second time Harry rides in this car he’ll be surprised and impressed by its magically enlarged back seat. Making the real question, how the heck does he not notice it the first time he rides in it?”

    Because on this occasion he already has enough things to notice without noticing the capacity of the back seat. I think we have all had experiences like this (although I wish my car was like this).

  10. ‘“It’s a bit small,” said Ron quickly. “Not like that room you had with the Muggles.”’
    Aw, Ron. Does Harry ever tell his friends he spent all those years in the cupboard under the stairs? Might help Ron’s inferiority complex a bit ;)

  11. Yeah I sortof agree with Empirexstate. But you know. He’s an eleven year old boy… He probably isn’t going to think about something like thAt to use as a form of consolment as much as ohhh lets say….. Hermione? HAha And On the car it probably expands as needed (maybe it’s the same thing with hermiones beaded bag?) ;D

  12. I imagine the fact that the car was flying and he had just been broken out of his room and seeig his friend again, there realy wasnt room in his young amazed brain to add much more, expecially an expanding charm. There is also the idea that that charm was put in right before they left for the train station.

  13. Why not just magically enlarge Ron’s room? …or every room for that matter?

  14. @hphphp To me in seemed like it had already been enlarged. Plus with all the magic keeping the house standing, it may unsafe.

  15. Keith James’s Burrow is the best one I have ever seen!

  16. I agree that Ron roots for the Chudley Cannons because they’re the local team, but why do they have to be so lousy? I think it’s to illustrate two things: Ron has always had to settle for things that are far from the best, and he’s an intensely loyal person.

    I second Grace has Victory’s comment on Keith James’s Burrow. It’s wonderful, and I don’t remember seeing it before. Josie, is this picture a recent addition?

  17. Billie, yes – it was drawn after I built the original version of this page, and I added it last August. Here’s the post from when it was posted:

    For what it’s worth, I always mention it on the updates blog when I add artwork around. :)

  18. Lol I love Keith James’s artwork, its just what I imagined the house to be when I first read this book. This is Probly one of my favourite chapters ever, because I love reading about all the little magical things in the house. And just through reading it you can feel that harry feels comfortable and at home here even though his upbringing was far from what its like there.

  19. Not many people seem to notice this… but what kind of people are the Dursleys’ neighbors?! They have to notice that a window suddenly has bars, and that there appears to be a boy in there… Didn’t Mrs. Figg, at least, become worried?

  20. Reading this chapter always makes me want JKR to write a prequel about Ron et al growing up. It would be fascinating to see how wizarding children grow up. I’m sure there would be lots of fun to be had with Fred and George as brothers.

    Ron gives us a good insight into Ginny that I’m sure many readers forget (I know I used to). ‘Ginny,’ said Ron. ‘You don’t know how weird it is for her to be this shy, she never shuts up normally -‘ Since the books are all about Harry we only really see things from his perspective. Ginny has always been a really outgoing character and only clams up in front of Harry. Since we only see her when Harry does we only see her being shy (at least in the early books).

  21. I can’t believe that no one has mentioned…reallycorking’s picture of the Flying Ford Anglia is really beautiful but unfortunately, quite incorrect. In Britain, the steering wheel is on the right side of the car. At first I wondered if it was loaded mirror backwards, but alas no, the signature indicates it was drawn that way. I hate to quibble about such a beautiful picture, though.

  22. Peg, I noticed that when I originally posted the drawing. I didn’t want to flip it, because I do my best to keep artwork I post here in its original stage. But it’s hard to fault it too much when the drawing is so wonderful in every other respect. :)

  23. Keith James’ astounding artwork reminded me of the stark contrast between the Burrow and Privet Drive. The Burrow is simply… so much alive and full of gaiety, whereas Privet Drive strikes me as truly dull and lifeless. Even the inhabitants of both are quite different from each other; Molly was nothing but warm and welcoming to Harry, whereas Petunia was simply rude to him. Jo’s writing is superb, in such a way that she allowed her readers to compare and contrast various angles of the story with each other.

    Hey, Harry picked up on lock-picking lessons from the twins. See PoA for this. :)) Plus, I never realized before that Arthur writes laws regarding his own area of work. The things I come up with on a second read…. :)

    reallycorking’s portrait is GREAT. Thumbs up to the artists.

  24. how far did ron send the gnome?

  25. I am a newbie to Harry Potter. I am only on my second read through. But this time since I know who Scabbers really is this part of the book stood out to me: …his fat grey rat, Scabbers, who was snoozing in a patch of sun. This makes me think of James and Lily, of Sirius and Remus and of Harry. How they’ve all lost so much because of this rat. How they’ve suffered and still suffer while Scabbers gets to laze about on the windowsill!

  26. I probably would’ve gasped, frozen and backed away if I’d came to breakfast to find a strange – let alone famous – boy in the dining room when he certainly wasn’t there the night before…doubly so if I was in my pjs!
    Harry might not have noticed the car because he was too caught up in the flight and escaping.

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