Harry Potter Character Archetypes
The Harry Potter franchise brilliantly authored by JK Rowling is no doubt one of the most
successful and unique collections of stories in recent memory. Despite its originality however, the
characters within the Harry Potter universe embody the same archetypes that have been used in literature
for centuries. Almost all of the main and secondary characters follow certain archetypal paths, and
Hermione Granger’s, Neville Longbottom’s, and Severus Snape’s arcs are among the most intriguing.
Throughout all seven Harry Potter novels, Hermione Granger is the Platonic Ideal - defined as
“an inspiration to the hero in an intellectual rather than physical attraction.” Hermione is referred to
throughout the series as the most intelligent student in her class, and she uses her superiority in this
category to help Harry throughout his many adventures. Despite them being of opposite gender, her’s and
Harry’s relationship is entirely platonic, as neither of them ever make an attempt to woo the other over the
course of their powerful friendship.
Neville Longbottom, friend of Harry’s and a fellow Gryffindor, is the Underdog - defined as “the
character who is least likely to succeed and expected to fail, but comes out victorious in the end.” In the