JK Rowling once mentioned in a Harry Potter special edition of Newsnight that the Death Eaters were originally called the Knights of Walpurgis.

Jeremy Paxman: And these scraps of paper which you've filed elegantly in a carrier bag, they're plot ideas or...
JK Rowling: Well some of them are totally redundant now because its been written and I keep them out of sentimentality's sake, I suppose. But some of it has backstory in it like this - in here is the history of the Death Eaters and I don't know that I'll ever actually need it - but at some point - which were once called something different - they were called the Knights of Walpurgis. I don't know if I'll need it. But I like knowing it. I like to keep that sort of stuff on hand.
(Newsround; Full Transcipt of JK's OOTP Interview).


Now I'm aware of the mythology and the traditions around Walpurgis Night. I'm interested in whether JK Rowling herself has passed further comment on this in any way - whether through a Pottermore article or another interview. Has she?

  • Updated my answer a bit. Still nothing though. (Unless they ever decide to release an HD copy of that documentary.)
    – ibid
    Dec 31, 2017 at 22:55
  • @ibid Thanks for the extra work. Maybe they'll bring out a cinematic version one day where the text will be readable. Jan 1, 2018 at 1:58
  • 1
    I know that a higher quality copy exists (based on this tweet) from the producer. I don't think it was ever released though.
    – ibid
    Jan 1, 2018 at 2:38
  • 1
    Knights of Walpurgis sounds like some fraternal order with chapters in every small town. Their annual Midnight Pancake Breakfast is on April 30/May 1.
    – EvilSnack
    Mar 3, 2018 at 21:13

1 Answer 1


She has not said anything futher

As usual it is hard to prove a negative, but a ctrl+f through all of her written works, accio-quote, and tweets do not turn up anything else.

Additionally, all the main secondary sources (e.g. wikia, lexicon, buzzfeedpottermore) do not show any other sources.

It seems that the 2003 CBBC interview is the only place where the term was mentioned.

Though if you have really good eyes you may be able to glean something from this image:

enter image description here

This is an old notebook in which I worked out, and again I don't want you to come too close on this, "that!" (*quickly flashes notebook at camera*) is the history of the death-eaters.

"Harry Potter & Me" - BBC, 28 December 2001

  • 3
    I think you of all people can say this without needing to prove it. +1
    – Möoz
    Dec 18, 2017 at 3:55

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.