Christmas has come again, Harry Potter fans! Author J.K. Rowling just shared magical new character details on Pottermore, in honor (sort of) of Dudley Dursley's birthday. If you head to the cupboard under the stairs on Pottermore, you can unlock more backstory on Harry Potter's Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon, who met at work when Petunia left home to take a typing course in London. Once Vernon proposed, Petunia accepted at once but she confessed the truth about her sister's magical abilities on "a tear-stained date," fearing his disapproval.


Here's the full description of what happened when Lily Evans brought her boyfriend James Potter to meet Petunia and her new fiancé Vernon:

The first meeting between Lily, her boyfriend James Potter, and the engaged couple, went badly, and the relationship nose-dived from there. James was amused by Vernon, and made the mistake of showing it. Vernon tried to patronise James, asking what car he drove. James described his racing broom. Vernon supposed out loud that wizards had to live on unemployment benefit. James explained about Gringotts, and the fortune his parents had saved there, in solid gold. Vernon could not tell whether he was being made fun of or not, and grew angry. The evening ended with Vernon and Petunia storming out of the restaurant, while Lily burst into tears and James (a little ashamed of himself) promised to make things up with Vernon at the earliest opportunity.

"This never happened. Petunia did not want Lily as a bridesmaid, because she was tired of being overshadowed; Lily was hurt. Vernon refused to speak to James at the reception, but described him, within James' earshot, as 'some kind of amateur magician'. Once married, Petunia grew ever more like Vernon. She loved their neat square house at number four, Privet Drive. She was secure, now, from objects that behaved strangely, from teapots that suddenly piped tunes as she passed, or long conversations about things she did not understand, with names like 'Quidditch' and 'Transfiguration'. She and Vernon chose not to attend Lily and James' wedding. The very last piece of correspondence she received from Lily and James was the announcement of Harry's birth, and after one contemptuous look, Petunia threw it in the bin."

Rowling also shared background on how she chose the names Vernon and Petunia, and revealed elsewhere that the Vernon's dislike for Harry comes, in part, "like Severus Snape's, from Harry's close resemblance to the father they both so disliked." Here are a few more Pottermore updates.

What do you think about these occasional tidbits? Do you love learning more about Harry's world or wish Rowling would let it rest?

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categories Movies, Harry Potter