Rita Skeeter wrote in her Witch Weekly article (Goblet of Fire, Chapter 27):

Miss Granger, a plain but ambitious girl, seems to have a taste for famous wizards that Harry alone cannot satisfy. Since the arrival at Hogwarts of Viktor Krum, Bulgaria Seeker and hero of the last World Quidditch Cup, Miss Granger has been toying with both boys’ affections. Krum, who is openly smitten with the devious Miss Granger, has already invited her to visit him in Bulgaria over the summer holidays, and insists that he has ‘never felt this way about any other girl’.
However, it might not be Miss Granger’s doubtful natural charms which have captured these unfortunate boys’ interest.
‘She’s really ugly,’ says Pansy Parkinson, a pretty and vivacious fourth-year student, ‘but she’d be well up to making a Love Potion, she’s quite brainy. I think that’s how she’s doing it.’
Love Potions are of course banned at Hogwarts, and no doubt Albus Dumbledore will want to investigate these claims. In the meantime, Harry Potter’s well-wishers must hope that, next time, he bestows his heart upon a worthier candidate.

She is definitely trying to defame Hermione here, but she was a reputed journalist who always have some truth to say (her article on Dumbledore after his death was a masterpiece). Even in this case, she correctly gave secret information about she dating Viktor Krum and he inviting her to Bulgaria. About Love Potion, she even quotes Pansy Parkinson.

Other than that, Viktor Krum was a celebrity-class person who should easily have access to hot girls. He getting attracted to a nerdy girl who is also claimed by Pansy Parkinson to be ugly doesn't make sense. He also insisted that he "never felt this way about any other girl" (Emphasis is Rita Skeeter's, not mine). Apparently, he seemed to have love feelings for Hermione, but he didn't pursue her after he left Hogwarts (possibly because Hermione couldn't feed him more Love Potion to keep the love alive). So, this thing requires real investigation.

As to how Hermione procured the Love Potion, we know for sure that Hogwarts girls used to smuggle Love Potion from Weasley Twins' shop, but the shop didn't exist during Goblet of Fire. I don't know about any other shop (in Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley) selling Love Potion which brings us possibility of she stealing it from Sluhorn's cabinet. Given, the only vial was stolen by Romilda Vane, the another possibility is she brewing it herself by stealing the ingredients from Sluhorn's cabinet. Exactly the Pansy Parkinson's claim which is what makes it so realistic (you know high school girls have too many ears all over the school).

If you look at the video in which Slughorn introduced Love Potion to the class, Hermione could identify it by smell (I know she was into books, but could books provide smell?).

What is most interesting in this is that all girls except Hermione got attracted to the potion. Except Hermione. Yes. This is exact criminal attitude. She either already had her hands on Love Potion or she didn't want to look suspicious on future stealings.

Did Hermione use Love Potion on Viktor Krum? Any words from Rowling or a solid logical interference from other excerpts? Only canonical answer please.

  • 2
    Yes, books do have a characteristic smell.
    – Righter
    Nov 30, 2021 at 3:39
  • 4
    Snape was the potions teacher during GoF. Slughorn took over as potions teacher at the start of HBP Nov 30, 2021 at 6:54
  • 4
    @Righter I think the OP means "could the book have shown Hermione what Love Potion smelled like, so she would recognize it later", which I don't recall being a property of any books in HP, but doesn't seem unreasonable. (If they can make books that talk, why not scratch-and-sniff books?)
    – Cadence
    Nov 30, 2021 at 8:15
  • I always took it as Krum being more than just a typical "jock". Krum liking her shows that he can respect a woman for than their appearance. It adds depth to the character which is lost a bit in the movies where she's a bombshell.
    – Harabeck
    Dec 1, 2021 at 14:59
  • 1
    "she was a reputed journalist" yes, but what kind of repute? Like most journalists, she was known for writing what made a good story and sold newspapers, not the 100% unvarnished truth.
    – FreeMan
    Dec 1, 2021 at 17:58

4 Answers 4


A large part of your argument is based on Pansy Parkinson's statements.

Here's her description:

Looking down, Harry saw the pug-faced Pansy Parkinson right at the front of the stands, her back to the pitch.

Chapter 19: The Lion and The Serpent (The Order of the Phoenix)

Now, granted, this is Harry's opinion and not a fact. But we have two possible cases here:

  1. She really was ugly. In this case, she's hardly in a position to judge Hermione's looks, except out of jealousy. The fact that Rita Skeeter describes her as "a pretty and vivacious fourth-year student" indicates that the entire article can be taken with a grain of salt.

  2. She wasn't ugly, and this was just Harry's take on her due to the whole Gryffindor-Slytherin struggle. In this case, you'd expect that this goes both ways. If Harry was influenced by the enmity of Gryffindors and Slytherins, Pansy too must have been influenced by it and was probably overly critical of Hermione's looks. Additionally, Hermione was a "Mudblood", which, in Pansy's eyes, makes her one of the worst people in Hogwarts. So again, we can't trust her statements.

Also, while it's true that Rita's articles have an element of truth to them, they're often filled with rubbish. For example, she falsified quotes from Harry:

'I suppose I get my strength from my parents, I know they'd be very proud of me if they could see me now ... yes, sometimes at night I still cry about them, I'm not ashamed to admit it ... I know nothing will hurt me during the Tournament, because they're watching over me ...'

Chapter 19: The Hungarian Horntail (The Goblet of Fire)

Again, she makes up the part about Harry and Hermione being in a relationship:

Harry has at last found love at Hogwarts. His close friend, Colin Creevey, says that Harry is rarely seen out of the company of one Hermione Granger, a stunningly pretty Muggle-born girl who, like Harry, is one of the top students in the school.

Chapter 19: The Hungarian Horntail (The Goblet of Fire)

Notice that in this piece, Rita herself calls Hermione "stunningly pretty", which pretty much negates anything that Pansy said.

As for why Hermione didn't get attracted towards the Love Potion, it's because she was already embarrassed. In the book,

“It’s Amortentia!”

“It is indeed. It seems almost foolish to ask,” said Slughorn, who was looking mightily impressed, “but I assume you know what it does?”

“It’s the most powerful love potion in the world!” said Hermione.

“Quite right! You recognized it, I suppose, by its distinctive mother-of-pearl sheen?”

“And the steam rising in characteristic spirals,” said Hermione enthusiastically, “and it’s supposed to smell differently to each of us, according to what attracts us, and I can smell freshly mown grass and new parchment and —”

But she turned slightly pink and did not complete the sentence.

Chapter 9: The Half-Blood Prince (The Half-Blood Prince)

Now, if anyone else could identify a rare potion so easily, it might be suspicious. But this is Hermione. She had already identified the Polyjuice Potion and Veritaserum earlier.

He indicated the cauldron nearest the Slytherin table. Harry raised himself slightly in his seat and saw what looked like plain water boiling away inside it.

Hermione’s well-practised hand hit the air before anybody else’s; Slughorn pointed at her.

“It’s Veritaserum, a colourless, odourless potion that forces the drinker to tell the truth,” said Hermione.

“Very good, very good!” said Slughorn happily. “Now,” he continued, pointing at the cauldron nearest the Ravenclaw table, “this one here is pretty well known. . . . Featured in a few Ministry leaflets lately too . . . Who can — ?”

Hermione’s hand was fastest once more. “It’s Polyjuice Potion, sir,” she said.

Harry too had recognized the slow-bubbling, mudlike substance in the second cauldron, but did not resent Hermione getting the credit for answering the question; she, after all, was the one who had succeeded in making it, back in their second year.

Chapter 9: The Half-Blood Prince (The Half-Blood Prince)

While she had illegally made the Polyjuice Potion before, Harry was the only one of them who had seen Veritaserum before (when Snape threatened him with it). This indicates that Hermione is sufficiently capable of recognising rare potions without encountering them before.

Also, for using a Love Potion on Krum, she couldn't have stolen it from Slughorn's cabinet (Slughorn wasn't a teacher back then). She'd have to steal it from Snape's cabinet, which was nearly impossible because Snape was already on high alert.

"So I give you fair warning, Potter," Snape continued in a softer and more dangerous voice, "pint-sized celebrity or not - if I catch you breaking into my office one more time -"

"I haven't been anywhere near your office!" said Harry angrily, forgetting his feigned deafness.

"Don't lie to me," Snape hissed, his fathomless black eyes boring into Harry's. "Boomslang skin. Gillyweed. Both come from my private stores, and I know who stole them."

Harry stared back at Snape, determined not to blink or to look guilty. In truth, he hadn't stolen either of these things from Snape. Hermione had taken the boomslang skin back in their second year - they had needed it for the Polyjuice Potion - and while Snape had suspected Harry at the time, he had never been able to prove it. Dobby, of course, had stolen the gillyweed.

"I don't know what you're talking about," Harry lied coldly.

"You were out of bed on the night my office was broken into!" Snape hissed. "I know it. Potter! Now, Mad-Eye Moody might have joined your fan club, but I will not tolerate your behavior! One more nighttime stroll into my office, Potter, and you will pay!"

Chapter 27: Padfoot Returns (The Goblet of Fire)

In conclusion, there isn't any substantial evidence against Hermione in this regard, which leads me to believe that she did not use a Love Potion.

  • 10
    May I add that in the Seventh book, Krum tries to get with Hermione during Bill and Fleur's wedding. If he wasn't really interested in her, and a love potion was involved, Krum would have no feelings for her because the effects of the potion don't last that long.
    – Lyzvaleska
    Nov 30, 2021 at 11:04
  • 2
    "She really was ugly. In this case, she's hardly in a position to judge Hermione's looks, except out of jealousy." - I don't think it follows that someone who isn't good-looking can't judge the looks of others. (Are beauty pageant judges always outstandingly beautiful themselves?) Plus, beauty and ugliness are subjective, in the eye of the beholder. I think a better line of attack on Pansy's "ugly" claim is your note that Rita's own article describes Hermione as "stunningly pretty".
    – Rand al'Thor
    Nov 30, 2021 at 18:49
  • In the beginning of Half-Blood Prince Pansy seems to acknowledge that Ginny is good-looking. Of course, one can distinguish between acknowledging that in private among friends vs acknowledging it in a newspaper quote.
    – Alex
    Dec 1, 2021 at 0:05
  • To my mind Hermione's embarrassment in HBP while discussing love potion is purely because she let slip what her likes are and was probably about to divulge the smell which could have pointed to her potential love interest (Ron). I don't think that exchange has any bearing on this answer. She may have considered love potion if she liked Victor from the start. But Hermione also has a strong moral compass so that may have held her back from using it.
    – RedBaron
    Dec 2, 2021 at 9:49

No - or at least, probably not.

'Love potions' within Harry Potter produce infatuation, rather than love, as explicitly described by Slughorn in Half Blood Prince:

‘Amortentia doesn’t really create love, of course. It is impossible to manufacture or imitate love. No, this will simply cause a powerful infatuation or obsession.

This is also consistent with Dumbledore's opinion of how Merope ended up with Tom Riddle. The potions have a limited duration, although it's not clear how long they do last without repeat dosing. Again, from Half Blood Prince:

Personally, I am inclined to think that she used a love potion. [...] ‘but I believe that Merope, who was deeply in love with her husband, could not bear to continue enslaving him by magical means. I believe that she made the choice to stop giving him the potion.

Love potions also appear to have a fairly prompt onset, as Ron discovers later in the novel:

‘Want one?’ said Ron thickly, holding out a box of Chocolate Cauldrons. [...] He was halfway to the dormitory door when he realised that Ron had not moved, but was leaning on his bedpost, staring out of the rain-washed window with a strangely unfocused look on his face. They’re the Chocolate Cauldrons Romilda gave me before Christmas and they’re all spiked with love potion!’

Now contrast this with the behaviour of Krum towards Hermione. Krum spends a lot of time in the library, long before any suggestion of interest from Hermione:

Viktor Krum was in the library an awful lot, too, and Harry wondered what he was up to. Was he studying, or was he looking for things to help him through the first task? Hermione often complained about Krum being there – not that he ever bothered them, but because groups of giggling girls often turned up to spy on him from behind bookshelves, and Hermione found the noise distracting.

Hermione also shows no particular interest in him:

‘Oh, no, he’s back again, why can’t he read on his stupid ship?’ said Hermione irritably, as Viktor Krum slouched in

Later it's stated that he was in the library trying to build up the nerve to speak to Hermione:

‘No, I wasn’t! If you really want to know, he – he said he’d been coming up to the library every day to try and talk to me, but he hadn’t been able to pluck up the courage!’

Hermione was no doubt capable of making Amortentia, or another love potion, or indeed of smuggling one in to Hogwarts. However, the indicators are that Krum was showing a distant interest in Hermione before there was any reciprocation, and that was a slow progression leading to inviting her to the Yule Ball - not a sudden and deep infatuation as seen with love potions elsewhere.


There is no reason why she would do this

The other answers (eg by Righter and Dave) are quite good. On top of that, it's worth considering the question of motivation.

Of course, as we see the story through Harry's eyes, we can't be sure what Hermione is thinking. However, up until the point where Hermione actually appears at the ball with Viktor, she appears thoroughly disinterested in him - annoyed, even, by his disruptive presence in the library. She seems completely unimpressed by his appearance or Quidditch skills, as she states:

"He’s not even good-looking! They only like him because he’s famous! They wouldn’t look twice at him if he couldn’t do that Wonky– Faint thing —"

It doesn't look like she had any motivation or temptation to use a love potion on him. If anything, she would have preferred him out of her life (at least, until she got to know him better).


There's no evidence that Hermione gave anyone a love potion, and Skeeter never actually states that she did. She explicitly quotes Pansy, who makes the accusation, and then states quite factually that love potions are banned at Hogwarts, and that Dumbledore will want to investigate the accusation.

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