In the earlier HP books it's pretty clear that Harry and Ginny get on quite well as friends (and that she's rather smitten with him) but I'm struggling to identify when and why Harry started to like Ginny in a romantic fashion..

I feel like it is simply presumed that Harry suddenly likes Ginny Weasley back, but do the books actually describe when and why he started to like her that way?

No speculation, please. Canon answers only.

  • 1
    The quotes are in Half-Blood Prince, if you can call it "falling in love" Aug 1, 2015 at 21:42

1 Answer 1


There are two parts to this question;

The 'when' is pretty easy to identify. He kind of notices her on the train on the way back to Hogwarts in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

‘Right,’ said Harry. He felt a strange twinge of annoyance as she walked away, her long red hair dancing behind her. He had become so used to her presence over the summer that he had almost forgotten that Ginny did not hang around with him, Ron and Hermione while at school.

and is evidently thinking about her during his potions class (albeit he doesn't quite realise that the smell he's smelling is Ginny's perfume).

They chose the one nearest a gold-coloured cauldron that was emitting one of the most seductive scents Harry had ever inhaled: somehow it reminded him simultaneously of treacle tart, the woody smell of a broomstick handle and something flowery he thought he might have smelled at The Burrow.

and then again on their trip into Hogsmeade:

Harry’s thoughts strayed to Ginny as they trudged up the road to Hogwarts through the frozen slush. They had not met up with her, undoubtedly, thought Harry, because she and Dean were cosily closeted in Madam Puddifoot’s teashop, that haunt of happy couples.

He realises that he's jealous of Dean:

however, they found themselves looking at Dean and Ginny, who were locked in a close embrace and kissing fiercely as if glued together. It was as though something large and scaly erupted into life in Harry’s stomach, clawing at his insides: hot blood seemed to flood his brain, so that all thought was extinguished, replaced by a savage urge to jinx Dean into a jelly.

and then decides that he full on fancies her shortly afterward (and starts entertaining sexual fantasies about her):

But unbidden into his mind came an image of that same deserted corridor with himself kissing Ginny instead … the monster in his chest purred … but then he saw Ron ripping open the tapestry curtain and drawing his wand on Harry, shouting things like ‘betrayal of trust’ … ‘supposed to be my friend’ [later] Harry gave a guilty start and wrenched his imagination away from a corridor in which no Ron intruded, in which he and Ginny were quite alone –

As to the why, it's clear that;

  • He obviously finds her physically attractive

‘There’s the silver lining I’ve been looking for,’ she whispered, and then she was kissing him as she had never kissed him before, and Harry was kissing her back, and it was blissful oblivion, better than Firewhisky; she was the only real thing in the world, Ginny, the feel of her, one hand at her back and one in her long, sweet-smelling hair – Deathly Hallows


Ginny and Gabrielle, both wearing golden dresses, looked even prettier than usual

  • He has become used to her company (see quote above)

  • He values her Quidditch skills

  • There are also a considerable number of quotes about the colour and length of her hair. Clearly he has a thing for gingers.

  • 10
    You might add the potion in Slughorn's first class, where it is hinted that apart from broomstick's smell, Harry noticed a smell he later associated with Ginny. Aug 3, 2015 at 8:12
  • 4
    Yeah, the fact that Slughorns love potion smelled like (paraphrasing here) "something flowery he might have smelled at the Burrow" was a hint that Harry already liked her subconsciously.
    – DavidS
    Aug 3, 2015 at 8:37
  • 3
    @DavidS, I seem to recall, that the smell origin was even clarified a bit later, when passing by Ginny. Aug 3, 2015 at 13:59
  • 2
    @howardmiller - And she can cook too. They say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.
    – Valorum
    Aug 7, 2016 at 12:38
  • 3
    Between the 4th and 5th rib with a twist at the end just to be sure. Aug 8, 2016 at 1:13

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