Significant Digits glossary


Significant Digits Glossary

Ackle - The mountain home of much of the goblin nation in Britain.

Agenspræc - Literally "other-speech," this term of art refers to the incantation required to authorize or remove a Floo connection to an established network.

Alþing - The fortress-like headquarters of the Council of Westphalia, the Alþing (or "All-Thing") serves as an information warehouse and the site of fiery debates.

Americas - See Westphalia, Council of.

Bogdanova, Agapa "Ilya" Ilyinichna - Head of the Office for the Detection and Confiscation of Counterfeit Defensive Spells and Protective Objects, Ilya is an efficient older witch of Russian extraction.  She is a graduate of the Durmstrang Institute, and maintains close ties with its faculty.

Bones, Amelia - As the Chief Warlock, Madame Amelia Bones serves as the leader of the Wizengamot and administrator of the justice system of Magical Britain.  As Supreme Mugwump, she leads the International Confederation of Wizards.

Brahmins - A prestigious group of Hit Wizards based out of Boston and employed by the Magical Congress of the United States.

Cappadocia - Magical Cappadocia, also called the Exarchate of Cappadocia, is a magical state that controls much of the Balkans and Turkey.  It is ruled by an elite class known as the sakellarioi (in continuity with the Byzantine state from which it descended), although nominally headed by a single powerful Strategos.  They are relatively poor when compared with the rest of the world, and the two dominant languages are Greek and Turkish.  They have belligerent relations with Cyprus.

Caucasus - Magical Caucasus is officially a single magical state north of Cappadocia, but in practice is a fractious conglomeration of small regions with little to unite them but convenience.  Delegate status to the International Confederation is frequently doled out as a sop to potential rivals of local strongmen, and in practice the Caucasus tends to lean heavily in favor towards Russia and the European contingent.

Charlevoix, Odette - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Charlevoix is of French extraction.  She is quiet and shy by nature, which combines oddly with the extremism of the Returned.  She looks just like your aunt.

Convivium - A standardized group of minor spells that work together for a single result.

Covenant, Tilly - Assistant Head of the Office for the Detection and Confiscation of Counterfeit Defensive Spells and Protective Objects.

Crad the Callow - The goblin warlord who led the Second Rebellion of 1612 (more successful than the rebellions of 1107, 1620, 1621, 1723, or 1800, but less successful than the Great Rebellion of Urg the Unclean in 1720).

Curd - A small community of goblins in Ireland.

Cyprus - Magical Cyprus is a small and wealthy state in the Mediterranean with strong historical ties to Britain.  They have had fractious relations with Cappadocia.

Diggory, Cedric - Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement and widely considered to be a prodigy, having risen to his position with remarkable speed.

Domovoi - A local authority figure in a Russian magical community.

Dueling - Individual magical combat, usually described using one of several sets of terminology.  Wand positions are described with German terms, such as Vom Tag, Ochs, and Pfugh, while foot positions are described with Italian terms, such as Mezzo Passo, Botta Longa, and so on.  The difference in labels comes from the fact that dueling was systematized in several pivotal texts a few decades after Italian rapier fencing had come into vogue in Europe, but the pertinent aspects of wandwork do not resemble the use of a rapier.

Edict of Hortensius, The - A decree by the Wizards' Council, predecessor to the Wizengamot, which made it illegal for the "lesser races" of goblins or hags to wield wands or enact high ritual.

Eleusinian Mysteries - The magical cabal that ruled Ancient Rome during much of its early history.  After their fall and some discord, they were succeeded by the Caesars and Muggle rule.

Emerati of the Ether, The - One of the magical states often described as being part of the Sawad, the Emerati of the Ether is ruled by a close-knit group of three families.  It could be more accurately described as a city-state, for the eponymous city of Ether is the Emerati's only holding.

Emerati of the Sky, The - One of the magical states often described as being part of the Sawad, the Emerati of the Sky is still known for its status as a hub of trade during the seventeenth-century Great Fear.

Euphoric - An addict of Euphoria Elixir, unable to resist compulsively indulging in that potion's rush of pleasure and delight.

Exses -- See O’Bruinan, Exses

Floo Flounder - An American device, these take the form of small bellows on the floor and dispense a set amount of Floo powder.  It is slightly safer and considerably cleaner than using manual pinches of the stuff, especially for children and the elderly.

Franklin's Nez - A popular Boston tavern, conspicuous for having Pensieves and a variety of exhilarating or pleasurable memories to rent.

Free States - Several different small states in the south of Africa that tend to agree on matters of international politics but which endure frequent friction among themselves: the Orange Free State, the Zulu Free State, and the Transvaal Free State.  The Free States are also notable for being one of the areas where the magical world is wholly out of sync with the Muggle world's borders.

Goddess, The - See Granger, Hermione Jean.

Göreme - A prison complex of the Exarchate of Cappadocia, where Dementors are housed.  They are kept a maximum distance away from prisoners, who are there to provide sustenance, not suffer punishment.

Granger, Hermione Jean - Also melodramatically known as the "Goddess," Hermione is an international envoy for the Treaty for Health and Life and an activist for various causes (most prominently the abolition of Dementors).

Grindelwald, Gellert - A Hungarian wizard who was educated at the Durmstrang Institute and who rose to power as a Dark Lord with the stated intention of overturning the Statute of Secrecy and improving the lives of Muggles everywhere under a benevolent dictatorship, modeled after Plato's The Republic.

Hig, Councilor Regulus "Reg" Black-Horse - Arguably the most influential Councilor on the Council of Westphalia, Hig has risen to power despite his years spent fighting for the rights of Muggles and Beings.  His closest ally is Councilor Limpel Tineagar.

Hírnökei - The "Vég Hírnökei," or "Heralds of the End," were the fighting force assembled by Gellert Grindelwald and indoctrinated with a strange kind of fanaticism.  They mostly came from former Durmstrang Institute students and the ranks of local warlords from Eastern Europe, and used Hungarian as a lingua franca.

Honourable, The - The group of wizards and witches in a variety of countries, but based out of Britain, which oppose The Tower in the name of ideals of freedom, independence, and the preservation of wizarding heritage.  Led by Draco and Narcissa Malfoy, former allies of the Tower.

Howard Prison - A purpose-built prison for magical Britain, created to replace Azkaban after its destruction at the end of 1992.

International Confederation of Wizards - The international assembly of wizardkind.  It is governed by majority vote, and delegates are apportioned to states based on magical population.  It is similar to the Muggle United Nations, with the differences of meeting infrequently, having no permanent headquarters, and occasionally being efficacious.

International Statute for Health and Life - An attempt at an international law setting into place requirements for all nations to have their sick and elderly restored to health at the Tower.  It failed to pass in the International Confederation of Wizards, and was one of Harry Potter's early failures.  See also Treaty for Health and Life.

Lectenberg, Susie - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Susie was a longtime petty criminal who once ran a business selling unauthorized portkeys and fraudulent potions out of Diagon Alley.  She was given an unusually harsh sentence of two years in Azkaban.  Susie is quite talkative in the pseudo-Dickensian manner of many of the residents of Diagon.

Kipp - Someone who manipulates money for a living outside of an institution, either by issuing small loans or "insurance" against damage.  The term originates from "Knut-nipper," although this literal meaning was deprecated once goblin-forged money became the standard.

Li, Hyori - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Hyori was a high-ranking duelist on the British circuit before she was imprisoned in Azkaban.  She is extremely laconic, but still waters run deep.

Mercantile, The - The leading newspaper of magical Boston.  It is noted for having an excellent reporting staff with top-notch investigations accompanied by entirely deluded editorials.

Mezzo Passo - See Dueling

Minister for Magic - Purportedly the leader of the government of magical Britain, although the Minister for Magic has historically been secondary to whomever has the greatest support in the Wizengamot, thanks to a governmental structure that strongly favors the legislative branch over the executive one.  Recent Ministers in chronological order have been: Millicent Bagnold, Bartemius Crouch, Cornelius Fudge, Rufus Scrimgeour, Pius Thicknesse, Junius Simplewort Smith, and Carmel N'goma (the current Minister).

Moody, Alastor "Mad Eye" - He's probably watching you now.

Mukwooru - A powerful Comanche medicine man in antiquity, who probably lived during the fifteenth or sixteenth century.

N'goma, Carmel - See Minister for Magic.

Norden - A magical state with borders coterminus with the Muggle states of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, as well as small chunks of territory within Magical Germany.

Nutcombe Society, The - The only currently extant organization for hags in Britain; it has only a handful of members, but it is an important support group for those hags who wish to live an alternative lifestyle.

O’Bruinan, Exses - The powerful witch who flew to the defense of Sontag during the Second Rebellion of Crad the Callow.  According to legend, she turned back the goblins, though she was too late to save Sontag or the treasures of the Peverell Brothers.

Ochs - See Dueling

Pfugh - See Dueling

Pirrip, Phillip "Pip" - A relatively new auror assigned to the Tower, given an unfortunate name by his father, a Muggle literature professor.

Potter-Evans-Verres, Harry James - Also known as "Harry Potter" or the "Tower," Harry lives in a box, heals people, and schemes.

Price, Esther - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Esther is an American by nationality, and her imprisonment in Azkaban (for illegally breeding and selling sphinxes) had been a matter of great contention between the magical States and magical Britain.

Rejuvenation - The official name for the treatment to restore youth at the Tower.  The process is done by any of the available healers and certified in every case by Harry Potter himself.  Most typically, applicants are restored to the best approximation of their youthful self (usually at the rough physiological age of 25).  There is a tendency for distinctive features to be lost or altered during the process, although this can be minimized if the applicant brings sufficient pictures of themselves when young.

Remote Cautionary Platform - A British Ministry of Magic (specifically, the Department of Mysteries) research center, used for only the most dangerous or delicate research.  It is located in the section of Antarctica reserved exclusively for the use of wizards and witches, Marie Byrd Land.

Returned, The - A small group of witches and wizards who work under the direction of Hermione Granger.  They have several aims, but their paramount purposes are the elimination of Dementors and the end of suffering in the world.  They do not lack ambition.  Also see Charlevoix, Odette; Lectenberg, Susie; Li, Hyori; Price, Esther; Smith, Simon; Tonks, Nymphadora; or Urg of the Returned.

Room 101 - Everyone knows what's in Room 101. The thing that is in Room 101 is the worst thing in the world.

Russell Center, The - One of the two major schools of magic in North America, the Russell Center focuses on practical application and specialization.  Students choose a specific course of study in addition to their general education, and are required to master their chosen field.

Safety Pole - See Tower, The.

Safety Stick - See Tower, The.

Salor Sprig, The - The Salor Sprig is a revered silver birch sapling at the centre of a sacred clearing in the Forbidden Forest near Hogwarts, in the northwest of their designated lands.  The Sprig remains the same, year after year, never maturing from its sapling stage.  According to legend, this is because it accords the centaurs too much respect to obstruct them in their studies or their frolics.  A small group of buildings has been built among the trees near the Sprig, and form a rough center to their community.

Satomi's Dogs - A powerful set of magical items once employed by Gellert Grindelwald, these crystal devices granted that Dark Lord some unknown power to sustain himself.  The secret of their means and method was restricted to only a handful of people.

Sawad - The group of magical states in the Middle East, a relic of ancient magical despots that are still customarily considered a unit, despite their actual independence and occasionally divergent interests.

Science Program - A four-year educational track at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the Science Program features two years of general magical studies and two years of scientific training.  It was introduced in the 1992-1993 school year as an optional vocational program.

Shacklebolt, Kingsley - Former Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, succeeding Amelia Bones upon her ascension to Chief Warlock and dismissed several years later.

Shichinin - A wildly effective and wildly unconventional trio of Hit Wizards.

Smith, Junius Simplewort - See Minister for Magic.

Smith, Simon - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Simon is Scottish and proud of it.  He once had a drinking problem and a fighting problem, and in time it led to Azkaban.

Sontag - A hamlet of medieval Magical Britain, located in the West Country.  It was abandoned in the fourteenth century.  It was near Godric's Hollow, the magical community from which Sontag once sprang (due to disagreements over the prohibition of werewolves).

Ten Thousand, The - Colloquial term used to refer to those twelve magical Asian states with a common Taoist and Confucian heritage.

Tidewater - The main magical community of Boston, Tidewater is a quaint and narrow dockside village set within Boston.  It is dominated, metaphorically and literally, by the stately Alþing.

Tineagar, Councilor Limpel -  A veteran of the Council of Westphalia and the ally of Reg Hig, Tineagar is generally disagreeable.  She is an expert in Floo networks and similar magics.

Thing - In addition to being a generic noun, it also historically refers to governing assemblies in many Germanic countries.  It is still used in some areas as a term for any magical assembly of lawmakers.

Thunderer - The chief military figure within the Russian Ministry of Magic (Українська).

Tonks, Nymphadora - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Tonks is a metamorphmagus and kind of a pain in the ass.

Toverislot - A mangled Middle Dutch term to describe the feeling of being magically exhausted.

Treaty for Health and Life - A formal agreement between different magical states, sponsored by Britain and guided by the Tower, that directs the establishment of Safety Poles in magical communities, the free availability of Safety Sticks and elite Healer's Kits, and a variety of other social and economic changes.

Treaty of Independence - A formal agreement between different magical states which originated with Draco and Narcissa Malfoy's Honourable group, setting a number of states in opposition to the Treaty for Health and Life and its associated regulations.

Tower, The - The clinic and sprawling research center on the grounds of Hogwarts, led by Harry Potter and dedicated to the perfect healing of any wound or sickness, free of charge.  Travel to the Tower is free and instantaneous with Safety Sticks or a Safety Pole.  Not technically a part of the government of magical Britain.  Also see Tower School of Doubt.

Tower School of Doubt, The - The institute of higher learning established by Harry Potter and designed to systematically apply the principles of the scientific method to the study of magic.  Works closely with the Unspeakables of the Department of Mysteries in the government of magical Britain.

Unbreakable Honour - The underground newspaper published by Draco and Narcissa Malfoy.  It has a worldwide circulation, and has made them the leaders of the minority campaign against the current leadership of Britain and the Treaty for Health and Life.

Urg the Unclean - The charismatic and brilliant leader of the fifth goblin rebellion of 1720-1722 C.E. (the "Great Rebellion.")

Urg the Returned - A member of the Returned of Hermione Granger, Urg was imprisoned in Azkaban as a gesture of dominance by the Wizengamot, asserting their authority over the goblins.  He was one of the first goblins to legitimately purchase a masterwork wand in many centuries.

Vanishing Room - A natural extension of the concept of the Vanishing Cabinet, constructed for easy international shipping.  Put things in, close the door, and they're teleported to the twin room somewhere else in the world.

Veres Kezek - The "Red Hands," one of the death squads of Gellert Grindelwald during his reign of terror.  See also Hírnökei.

Vom Tag - See Dueling

Walpurgisnacht - "Walpurgis Night," the night of April 30th, is a night of celebration for many Muggles.  It is named after St. Walpurga, and in many countries in Europe is marked by the building of big bonfires, evoking the fires in which witches were once burned.  It is a grim night of remembrance for wizardkind.

Weasley, Percy - Senior Undersecretary Percy Weasley is the effective head of government of Magical Britain, serving under a rotating and mostly meaningless series of Ministers.  He is seen as slightly priggish by his underlings, but his efficiency and concern for detail are peerless.

Westphalia, Council of - The Mystical and Benevolent Council of Westphalia, also called the Westphalian Council and headquartered in the Alþing, is the most powerful magical organization in the United States of America and Canada.  For years, it has acted as the self-appointed guardian of the interests of both North and South America (or at least, those interests as it sees them).  It has controlled a large majority of the Magical Congress of the United States for many years, making it the effective ruler of the country and arbiter of its delegates to the International Confederation of Wizards.

Westphalia, Peace of - A formative historical event in both the Muggle and magical worlds, the Peace ended multiple wars and established norms regarding the formal existence of states and their rights under international law.  Soon led to the founding of the International Confederation of Wizards.

Wizengamot - The supreme judicial and legislative body of magical Britain, the Wizengamot is led by Amelia Bones and populated overwhelmingly with supporters of Harry Potter and his initiatives.  It is composed predominantly of the representatives of Noble Houses, as well as elected Tribunes from other constituent bodies.

Záh Kardja - The "Sword of Záh," one of the death squads of Gellert Grindelwald during his reign of terror.  Named in honor of the Hungarian Felician Záh.  See also Hírnökei.

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