Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes

chapter five of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Back at the Burrow, Harry hangs out with the Weasleys as the twins get in trouble for giving Dudley their joke candy, Percy tries unsuccessfully to get everyone quiet so he can work, and the family eats dinner together in the yard, discussing the Quidditch World Cup.

Charlie, by LMRourke

This had to be Charlie, who worked with dragons in Romania.


Bill, by Leela Starsky

Harry had always imagined Bill to be an older version of Percy: fussy about rule-breaking and fond of bossing everyone around. However, Bill was – there was no other word for it – cool.


Percy and Twins, by glockgal

“I’m trying to work in here, you know – I’ve got a report to finish for the office – and it’s rather difficult to concentrate when people keep thundering up and down the stairs.”


Bill and Charlie's Table Fight, by Sheena Kristen Sy

Bill and Charlie both had their wands out, and were making two battered old tables fly high above the lawn, smashing into each other, each attempting to knock the other’s out of the air.


Back to the Burrow, by Helene Sirois

By seven o’clock, the two tables were groaning under dishes and dishes of Mrs. Weasleys’ excellent cooking, and the nine Weasleys, Harry, and Hermione were settling themselves down to eat.


At the Burrow, by Beeeb

Mr. Weasley conjured up candles to light the darkening garden before they had their homemade strawberry ice cream, and by the time they had finished, moths were fluttering low over the table, and the warm air was perfumed with the smells of grass and honeysuckle.

(by Beeeb)


about the chapter


Something You May Not Have Noticed

Mr. Weasley gets pretty upset with Fred and George for deliberately dropping a Ton-Tongue-Toffee for Dudley (“angrier than Harry had ever seen him,” in fact). But in his anger, he misses that the thing that’s made him most upset wasn’t lost on his kids. Because for all the jokes we see Fred and George play over the years, this is the only time they pick on a Muggle just for fun – and as they tell their father, the reason they do it has far less to do with his lack of magic than it has to do with his bullying their friend. If there’s anything Arthur has taught his children well, it’s that Muggles and Muggle-borns deserve the same respect as wizards.

Life at the Burrow

This is Hermione’s first trip to the Burrow, as far as we know, and the poor girl doesn’t quite seem to know what to make of the Weasleys. More than once while the rest of the family is laughing or joking around, she hovers on the periphery, “torn between amusement and anxiety.” And when the others make fun of Percy’s work obsession, she alone is conspicuously silent. I have to wonder what’s going through her head all this time, as she has a long way to go learning to loosen up a bit.

Something to Remember

We already know that Voldemort is responsible for the disappearance of Bertha Jorkins, from the first chapter of the book. It’s a shame Harry doesn’t remember that part of his dream, because when he overhears the Weaslsys discussing her, it’s the first reference we’ve heard to the Wizarding world noticing something that Voldemort has done. It won’t be the last.

The Final Word

“England got knocked out by Transylvania… which is a bit upsetting. I actually said this in Scotland, this boy put up his hand and said ‘what happened to Scotland?’ and I said well you were slaughtered by Luxembourg, and he wasn’t happy. They take it really seriousl … ‘but Luxenbourg are rubbish!’ How do you know what they’re like at Quidditch?”–J.K. Rowling, October 1999

25 Responses to “Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes”

  1. I love this scene! And also Glockgal’s illustration.

  2. Re: Bertha Jorkins and the dream – chapter 1 is strange in that the reader is getting the information relayed through Frank Bryce but Harry is getting it (presumably) through Voldemort. I was never quite sure when Harry entered Voldemort’s mind and how much he actually heard, so its possible that he just wasn’t “in the dream” at that point to hear it. Or maybe not. *shrugs*

  3. I love Jo’s comment! Also, good that you pointed out that it’s Hermione’s first time in the Burrow. I had completely ignored that…

  4. “the poor girl doesn’t quite seem to know what to make of the Weasleys”

    And little does she know that one day they’ll be her in-laws!

  5. Katy, don’t you think that Hermione has been wanting Weasley in-laws since she first opened the compartment door on the Hogwarts Express and saw Harry and Ron for the first time? I think she was doomed from the start! Remember that when she rushes into the troll-infested toilet to cry, it’s because she has heard Ron being unkind about her. After all, Ginny knew from her first sight of Harry that he was the only one for her.

    And like Ginny, Hermione would be shy about letting her feelings show. No wonder she lurked in the background.

  6. In some ways, I find the character of Hermione to be under-developed. I mean we know very little of her Muggle life, her parents or few facts about her mundane everyday life. I was very annoyed that we never seen her parents in Book 7 and if it weren’t for the fact that she’s constantly referred to as a Muggle born, I would almost think she’s a pure blood witch!

  7. Love Beeb’s drawing too!;)

  8. First off, great site! I look forward to reading more commentary, have already been through the first three books.

    In reference to Fred and George, I think it’s possible to argue that their tricks are often more malicious than funny. Sure, some of their victims deserve it, but that doesn’t make it right. We’re also seeing this through Harry’s eyes, and he’s a bit biased.

    I don’t entirely subscribe to this belief myself, but I find it intriguing.

  9. I, too, had missed that this was Hermiones first time to the Burrow.

    The Gnome-scenes are another nice example of how JKR puts in little things which make the books so good.

  10. I think you’ve got a point about Hermione’s development; I would like to have seen more of her folks and her life, if only because of the fascinating contrast to how Harry grew up. Was she as lonely and isolated as him, despite her loving, understanding parents?

    I think we’re told more about her from the lack of information, though: She’s jumped into witchcraft head first, and has no interest in going back to a life that, in all probability, was probably very lonely and frustrating for her. She might regret that later in life, as she realizes her parents don’t know who her best friends in the world are and she’s forgotten how to make toast without magic, but there you are.

  11. I seem to recall JKR once stating that she deliberately didn’t give us much info on Hermione’s family, since we saw so much of Ron’s. But I agree, I would have liked to see more of them as well.

  12. This is slightly off topic but does anyone else see the resemblance of Leela Starsky’s picture of Bill to the character of Smith Jarod from Sex and The City?

  13. here’s a link to the photo of Smith. http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_f5_P8dhgnF0/SPctr6dlwNI/AAAAAAAACXQ/UTs2piW1voM/s400/smith.bmp

  14. Love Leela Starsky’s picture of Bill (whether or not it looks like S.J.). It really jarred me…I had sort of pictured Bill as just another amorphous redheaded Weasley, despite the description “cool,” but ever since I saw that picture, I have a whole new view of Bill.

  15. You have to feel for Percy here– he’s a new employee, which means he’s probably aware that he has to work doubly hard to make sure he keeps his position. But when he tries to work hard, he’s teased unmercifully for it by his brothers. You can’t really blame him for trying to get some peace and quiet. Can’t the guy catch a break?

  16. Erica, I think they’re teasing him less for being a hard worker and more for his pompousness about his work. It’s not so much that cauldron thickness is unimportant so much as it’s not as important as he’s acting like it is. I agree though that you do have to feel sorry for him sometimes. I also feel a bit sorry for the twins. Their mother’s fears about them ending up in front of the Improper Use of Magic Office are perfectly valid, but her lack of support for their chosen career path and her belief that they don’t have any ambition (which as we see is not true), is probably making their behaviour worse. Percy and the twins seem to be most actively seeking her attention, Percy by constantly being the ‘model son’, to the point of sometimes making his brothers look bad so as to be compared to them, and the twins by making as much trouble as possible.

  17. The very beginning of this chapter is one of the first manifestations of the paternal attitudes many otherwise-tolerant wizards have towards muggles. In this chapter, Arthur Weasley does not stop to consider that muggles, while they lack magical power, can nonetheless be just as cruel as wizards. He doesn’t allow for the fact that Dudley may have actually done something to deserve this. Instead, he simply assumes that his own sons are prejudiced against muggles. This will crop up again and again, but most notably in book seven: Dumbledore’s father would be given a life sentence in Azkaban for seeking revenge on the muggle boys that abused his family. And if Arthur Weasley delivered the “anti-muggle” verdict on his own sons, we can’t imagine that Percival Dumbledore could have possibly gotten a fair trial, whether or not he had chosen to hide the facts.

  18. Elizabeth, I think you’re right about Arthur, but I don’t think I agree with your assessment of Percival’s trial. Wizards in general (Arthur is an exception) are shown pretty regularly to be predisposed *against* Muggles. I think Percival’s imprisonment had more to do with the fact that he had indeed committed a crime than anything else. It was an unfair situation, because the wizarding court couldn’t try the Muggle boys who had abused Ariana. But that still doesn’t mean that two wrongs make a right.

  19. i always kind of wondered about Hermiones parents…i mean because they only see their daughter like 3-4 months out of a year and from books 4-7 she spends almost all of her summer months at the burrow! If it was my parents they’d have me under lock and key..maybe she used a spell or a memory charm to convince them?

  20. ‘Bill and Charlie both had their wands out, and were making two battered old tables fly high above the lawn, smashing into each other, each attempting to knock the other’s out of the air.’

    What a fascinating insight into a life of magic after Hogwarts. This more than any other moment in the entire series makes me think ‘OMG I want to be a wizard!!!’

  21. It really didn’t dawn on me that this was the first trip to the burrows for Hermione either, at least it didn’t make much of an impression. I bet she was feeling a little uncomfortable at being at a school friends home for the first time, and sleeping over. She had only see Ron’s parents from the train or in Diagon Ally. She hadn’t met Bill, who is supposed to be very good looking or Charlie who, come on, works with dragons. It’s probobly a shock to see so many Weasleys in one room. Usually she is a main voice amoungs her friends.

  22. megan, i was thinking about that too! then i thought hermione said something in i think OoTP that her parents didnt much keep up wtih the wizarding world, so they didnt really care much that she was doing what probably most kids did at that age, holiday with their friends families etc. i could be wrong, but i thought i remember her saying that in either OoTP or HBP

  23. i absolutely LOVE the picture of Bill!! its exactly how i pictured him when reading the books!


  25. Helene Sirois’ picture! And Leela’s Bill made me think “eat your heart out”!

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: