Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/26/22: Hogwarts Houses

Now that Halloween is coming around, let’s talk about a perennial costume: Harry Potter. Either Harry himself, in a black robe (a polyester one used for graduations is available at most thrift stores), scarf, round eyeglasses, and eye-penciled scarf, or one of the other characters such as Snape, Hermione, or a Death Eater. All have the same advantage of the cheap graduation robe as the basic set piece. And of course, Harry Potter characters cropping up again brings all sorts of hoopla about teaching kids Satanism and whatnot.

Hogwart’s Sorting Hat separated the kids into four different Houses, but I’ve often thought there was room for more. Here’s some, randomgenned, that might have been.


Hogwarts Houses no one talks about

Draffinwaft: This house has a curious bent. Foolhardy and easily irritated, they cannot be trusted with important matters of research, governance, or defense. Yet they also evince great amounts of empathy. The few that take on the mantle of Draffinwaft serve as counselors, floor monitors, and teachers of non-essential classes like acting and arts and crafts. Their symbol is a satyr.

Keshrak: Wisdom is the asset of this house. Keshraks can always be trusted to make the right decision, no matter what. They serve on the ruling board as judges, mediators, and diplomats. On the downside, they are completely unsentimental and humorless, which can make others uncomfortable. Their symbol is a lamprey.

Griscloud: This house has the basilisk as its symbol, and legend says all who are chosen for it have the power to turn others to stone with a direct glare. But rather, their stony silence and deadpan gaze cause such discomfiture in others no one dares cross them, or well, even interact with them. Those in the Griscloud House do best working alone, traditionally fulfilling the roles of night watchmen, watch repairers, and night auditors.

Imilscraw: Those of this House are known as the Executioners, because they do the unpleasant tasks that no one else at Hogwarts will do. Their symbol is the cockatrice. Because they perform a vital service the school would be lost without, members tend to be haughty and self-assured.

Lytharpy: Lytharpys are taught to be magical mercenaries, hiring themselves out to the highest bidder. In this way they bring much-needed income to the school. This is the only House where the students don’t socialize with all the others. Those chosen often have a cruel or passionate nature. Its symbol is a hawk.

Schaffindor: Those of this House specialize in divination, choosing a method such as cards, tea leaves, astrology, crystal gazing, pyromancy, or runestones. That is all they do. The four main Houses always consult them before making important decisions. Schaffindors are supposed to serve impartially, but as they rose out of a branch of the Slytherin, they tend to advocate for their ancestral House. Their symbol is a parrot. In manner they are diplomatic, cautious, and extremely intelligent. Some say they don’t need divination at all, they manipulate others through the sheer force of their intellects.

Zythless: Those of this House take care of the school’s horses. They are trustworthy and proud, but desperate to be accepted as equals by the others. Their symbol is a bat because bats are encouraged to live in the stables where they eat the noxious insects that bother the horses.


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