Clearly the spell which inflates Aunt Marge in book three isn't a standard spoken spell, and is cast wandless. So there is no real 'spell' to speak of. But what is it most like?

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Clearly she expands a considerable amount so it may be similar to engorgio, however she also floats far more easily than she should be able to by sheer buoyancy (She'd need to have inflated to about ~80 cubic meters to get any sort of lift, which is roughly 9 foot in diameter!) so there is some sort of lift element to this charm.

What is the closest spell to the effect she feels when she is inflated?

  • 1
    I must admit -- I never really wondered about this; the accidental magic demonstrations we've seen (note: not Wandless like Harry's mother's youthful demonstrations) have always seemed to be a response to a strong desire or perception, rather than a specific spell. (Hair regrowing, the glass vanishing, etc.) I always thought this was just a manifestation of Harry being irritated at how 'full of hot air' she was, and his irritation causing the perception to become manifest.
    – K-H-W
    Dec 19, 2017 at 22:53

5 Answers 5


There are quite a few spells that could be candidates. I'll bold the ones I think are the most likely to be similar to whatever type of magic occurred to cause Aunt Marge to blow up and float away.

  • Anti-gravity mist (incantation unknown) This is a charm which creates an innocent-looking mist which hovers above the ground. A person stepping into this mist immediately finds that up and down have reversed and they are hanging from the ground over the endless sky. Harry encounters this spell in the maze in the Triwizard Tournament. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Banishing Charm (Depulso in Prisoner of Azkaban, the movie; no canon incantation) Sends an object away from the caster; the target object is said to have been Banished. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Cave Inimicum Defensive spell to keep enemies away. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Engorgio Spell that causes a target to swell in size HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Evanesco Makes something vanish (not just become invisible, but go away completely) HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Feather Light (no incantation given) Spell that makes the target object weigh practically nothing. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Hover Charm (no incantation given) Makes an object float in the air. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Levicorpus Dangles the target person upside-down by the ankle in mid-air. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Mobilicorpus Moves a body HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Protean Charm A complex spell that changes the form of something HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Repello Spell that keeps something away from the caster or from a target object that the spell is cast upon. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Revulsion Jinx Forces the target to back off from the caster, letting go of him or her if the target is holding on to the caster. HP Lexicon - Spells
  • Wingardium Leviosa Causes an object to levitate. HP Lexicon - Spells

I would guess that the closest spells Aunt Marge might have felt like are the Feather Light charm, a hover charm, and Wingardium Leviosa.

  • 6
    I would scratch Wingardium Leviosa from the list, since as far as explained by the books and the movies, it only makes objects hover controlled by your will and does not affect the state of the object itself.
    – Michael K
    Mar 14, 2012 at 11:06
  • I'd say Engorgio + Leviosa Aug 16, 2020 at 9:22

My guess is that this was not a default spell, but some kind of scrambled-together spell, performed by Harry's intuition. Remember when Harry made the window of the snake's terrarium in the zoo disappear, that was before Harry knew any spells at all.


It is hard to tell which spell is most likely for this because Harry was not able to cast spells without saying them at this point. There are many possible spells for letting an object hover and I guess there are an awful lot of spells to inflate things, too.

It is very unlikely that Harry thought of using one spell in particular (or even combined spells) in this special situation. If you really want one exact spell for this, you should write a letter to J.K. Rowling and ask her, since it was not explained in detail in any of the books.

To answer your question: In my opinion (not in any book or movie) the spell that would come closest to the situation would be an altered version of Feather Light.

  • This is more or less what I mean by isn't a standard spoken spell, and I'm asking what [spell] is it most like. So this doesn't answer my question.
    – AncientSwordRage
    Mar 14, 2012 at 16:05
  • In that case, it is really hard to say, because there are many spells used to let objects levitate like Hover Charm, feather-light or even Wingardium Leviosa. The problem with this is that the effect of all of this spell are described and none of them inflated the object. Therefore, it has to be at least a combination of spells.
    – Michael K
    Mar 14, 2012 at 16:29
  • I updated my question again.
    – Michael K
    Mar 14, 2012 at 16:36

I don't think this is really an answerable question. When Harry casts this "spell" he is agitated and the effects appear to be an unconscious magical discharge. The formal spells are a way of organizing the magic in a controllable way.

It would be like asking a pianist what song he was playing when he accidentally tripped and fell against the piano keyboard. Even if the outburst bore some resemblance to a song, it wouldn't make sense to say he was playing that song. The resemblance would be due to the fact the both the real song and the accidental song are made of the same fundamental elements (i.e., notes).

In this case Harry's accidental magical discharge summed to create effects that resemble the effects of other spells but this was only an accident of uncontrolled magic.

  • I think this one best answers the question Dec 19, 2017 at 22:40

I would say Evanesco. As described above, it Makes something vanish (not just become invisible, but go away completely). I think that Harry probably was thinking about how much he wanted her to just go away and ended up with some sort of cross with this spell


You'll remember Mr Weasley giving an explanation to Harry about how wizards, not just those under 11 years of age, can produce magic that they would otherwise be incapable of in extreme situations as an explanation for what we later find to be Priori Incantatem. It is safe to say that the strange effects of Harry's magic and the use of non-verbal spell-work prior to his learning about it that he simply was performing magic impulsively as he became enraged. This form of magic is similar to the Obscurus, pent up magic that is released randomly when the host becomes unstable or enraged and in this case, Harry is not allowed to do magic all summer and is constantly undergoing torment from Aunt Marge. There are some however that believe the incantation to be 'Inflatus', deriving from the latin term "inflato", to swell or further yet the latin term "inflatus" meaning to puff. Hope I've helped whoever reads this.

Additionally, it could not be Evanesco, as Aunt Marge does not disappear but swell and float away. Nor could it be any of the spells on that list as they are too controlled and specific to be applied to the spell effects on Marge.

  • 1
    "You'll remember Mr Weasley giving an explanation to Harry" If I don't remember, when did this occur?
    – amflare
    Dec 19, 2017 at 22:38

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