Time and time again, several times per book, characters will emotionally point out "...you can't apparate in or out of Hogwarts!!"

And this statement happens often enough that I'm starting to think it's more than just literary fodder, but an intentional plot device or inside joke from the author. Is there any evidence that this is the case?

  • 60
    If you'd read Hogwarts, A History you'd know the answer to this, honestly.
    – Jeff
    Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 15:35
  • Maybe if someone tried to apparate, it would result in a nasty splinching
    – Mikasa
    Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 15:58
  • I'd be curious to know if anyone other than Hermione has ever pointed this out. I CBA to read the 7 books again, but I don't think anyone did.
    – Sidney
    Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 17:18
  • 2
    @Sidney Pretty sure either Umbridge and/or Fudge said it in Order of the Phoenix when they tried to capture Dumbledore.
    – LCIII
    Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 17:29
  • 3
    ...my guess is that Rowling really wanted to avoid the "omg why didn't they use the eagles to get to Mordor" situation.
    – xDaizu
    Commented Apr 18, 2017 at 13:01

1 Answer 1


Because several times various characters suggest that someone Apparated or Disapparated to/from the Hogwarts grounds.

To the best of my knowledge, it is commonly suggested when people appear or disappear quickly while in Hogwarts (like Barty Crouch did, according the the Map, in Book 4). Someone will suggests Apparition to explain the quick exit, and someone else (usually Hermione, but later occasionally Ron and/or Harry, once they've heard it a lot) will use the quote to shoot down that explanation.

It's also worth noting that it isn't strictly true. The current Headmaster can apply or remove that restriction (seemingly at will), and routinely does when the Sixth-Years are learning how to Apparate. The wards which prevent Apparition can be damaged or taken down by attackers (as occurred during the Battle of Hogwarts). Lastly, House-Elf teleportation - though superficially similar to apparition - is not affected. It's possible this is only true for Elves bound to the castle, but we cannot be certain of that as we never see a non-Bound elf try 'on screen'.

As for the out-of-character reasons, J.K. Rowling made Hogwarts a 'teleport-free' zone. Why she chose to do this is not known for sure, but it is possible it was to cover potential plot holes (like why upper-year students didn't teleport out when there was trouble, or why Aurors couldn't quickly respond to the latest problems).

Once this was decided, she had to put it into the books (so her characters could inform the readers). Presumably the question kept coming up, so she made sure her characters kept reinforcing it. Eventually, characterization picked it up and it became almost a catch-phrase for Hermione, which the other characters could use to tease her.

  • 4
    @MikasaPinata House elves don't apparate, they teleport. It's a small but important difference.
    – LCIII
    Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 16:19
  • 3
    @Jeff - Harry & co couldn't apparate out of the Malfoy dungeon, and it seems highly likely that apparition warding would be a standard part of magical security. Otherwise theft would be just too easy. However that begs the question: what is there to stop someone ordering their house elf to steal something. Hmmm. Maybe I should ask... Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 17:01
  • 11
    Actually, we do know that House Elves aren't affected; Dobby teleported in to see Harry in the hospital while he was still working for the Malfoys.
    – alexgbelov
    Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 17:46
  • 5
    We also see Kreacher Apparate (and Disapparate) inside Hogwarts, and, while he'd been told to work in the kitchens by Harry, he wasn't in any way actually bound to Hogwarts. Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 17:49
  • 6
    @PaulJohnson People who can afford House Elves don't need to steal for financial reasons, since House Elves generally come with large estates owned by old, rich families. People from old, rich families also tend to view things such as stealing as beneath them. So there's probably technically nothing stopping them, it's just not something they'd ever likely do. Commented Apr 17, 2017 at 17:52

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.