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What are the 4 houses of Harry Potter?

What are the 4 houses of Harry Potter?

In the Harry Potter book and film series, there are four houses at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Hufflepuff. When students arrive at Hogwarts, they are sorted into one of the four houses, which serves as their home and family while attending school. The four houses have distinctive histories, values, and reputations. Over the course of the Harry Potter stories, readers and viewers learn about the qualities associated with each Hogwarts house.


Gryffindor house values courage, bravery, nerve, and chivalry. Its mascot is the lion, and its colors are scarlet and gold. The Gryffindor dormitories are located in Gryffindor Tower. Notable Gryffindors from the books include Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and the Weasley family.

The founder of Gryffindor house is Godric Gryffindor. According to Pottermore, Gryffindor prizes courage, determination, and strength of heart above all else. Gryffindors tend to be brave, daring, and self-sacrificing. They stand up for what they believe in and are not afraid to fight for justice. Gryffindors can also be short-tempered and impulsive at times. Famous Gryffindors include Albus Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall, and Hagrid.


Slytherin house values ambition, cunning, resourcefulness, and pure wizarding blood. Its mascot is the serpent, and its colors are green and silver. The Slytherin dormitories are in the dungeons under Hogwarts Lake. Notable Slytherins from the books include Draco Malfoy, Tom Riddle/Lord Voldemort, and Professor Snape.

The founder of Slytherin is Salazar Slytherin. Slytherins tend to be clever, shrewd, and achievement-oriented. They have a certain disregard for rules and are known for self-preservation. Slytherins can be ruthless in pursuing their goals but are also known for fraternity within their house. There is somewhat of a dark reputation around Slytherins, as many dark wizards were in this house.


Ravenclaw values intelligence, wisdom, creativity, and wit. Its mascot is the eagle and its colors are blue and bronze. The Ravenclaw dormitories are located in Ravenclaw Tower. Notable Ravenclaws include Luna Lovegood and Professor Flitwick.

The founder of Ravenclaw is Rowena Ravenclaw. She prized those with intelligence, knowledge, and wisdom. Ravenclaws tend to be individualistic but also deeply loyal to those they care about. They are curious and love to learn and experiment. Ravenclaws enjoy pushing boundaries with their creativity. Famous Ravenclaws include Garrick Ollivander, Professor Trelawney, and Gilderoy Lockhart.


Hufflepuff values hard work, dedication, fair play, patience, and loyalty. Its mascot is the badger, and yellow and black are its colors. The Hufflepuff dormitories are near the kitchens under the Great Hall. Notable Hufflepuffs include Cedric Diggory and Nymphadora Tonks.

The founder of Hufflepuff is Helga Hufflepuff. She believed strongly in fairness and accepting students from all walks of life. Hufflepuffs tend to be friendly, gentle, and inclusive. They are known for being tireless workers and very patient and loyal friends. Hufflepuffs highly value justice and despise cheating or unnecessary violence. Famous Hufflepuffs include Pomona Sprout, Ted Tonks, and Newt Scamander.

The Sorting Hat

When students arrive at Hogwarts, they are sorted into their houses through the Sorting Hat ceremony. The Sorting Hat is a magical, sentient hat that can read the minds of students and determine which house they belong in based on their personal qualities and preferences.

The Sorting Hat considers things like a student’s values, abilities, personality, and desires when deciding on their house. Students will remain in their chosen house for all seven years they are at Hogwarts. The houses act as both living quarters and family groups for the duration of their studies.

Here is a summary of some key traits of each Hogwarts house:

House Traits
Gryffindor Bravery, courage, determination, daring
Slytherin Ambition, cunning, resourcefulness, fraternity
Ravenclaw Intelligence, wisdom, creativity, individuality
Hufflepuff Hard work, dedication, patience, loyalty

Inter-House Relationships and Reputations

Throughout the series, readers see various relationships and stereotypes emerge between the houses. Gryffindors and Slytherins have somewhat of a rivalry, likely stemming from the differences between Godric Gryffindor and Salazar Slytherin when Hogwarts was founded. Gryffindors tend to view Slytherins as devious and lacking morals, while Slytherins may see Gryffindors as reckless and headstrong.

Ravenclaws are often portrayed as being intellectual elitists. They are deeply intelligent but can sometimes come across as pretentious to others. Hufflepuffs are often seen as being the least exceptional or impressive of the houses. They are considered friendly but lacking in boldness and ambition. However, Hufflepuffs demonstrate great loyalty and tenacity throughout the series.

In many cases, these reputations are not entirely fair. While the houses have certain dominant traits, students display diverse qualities regardless of their house. Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Neville show bravery despite not all being Gryffindors. Draco may be a Slytherin but he also shows cowardice at times. Luna is an eccentric Ravenclaw who cares deeply about her friends. Prejudices between houses can obscure the nuances of individual students’ attributes.

Unity Between the Houses

Though each house has its own identity, the divisions between them are not absolute. Hogwarts reminds students that while different qualities matter to each house, everyone is united as members of the same school.

When major threats face the school, such as when the Chamber of Secrets is opened, students and faculty come together despite house differences. Inter-house relationships also bloom, showing connections can form across house boundaries. Students date partners from other houses, band together in groups like Dumbledore’s Army, and side with Hogwarts over evil forces trying to infiltrate the school.

The four Hogwarts houses are foundational social structures that give students places to belong. The houses allow students to cultivate different strengths and explore their capabilities and values. But above house alignments, the magic of Hogwarts brings everyone together as one community. Students carry the lessons and relationships from their houses with them long after graduation.


The four Hogwarts houses of Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Hufflepuff play integral roles in the Harry Potter series. Each house cultivates certain dominant traits and forms a distinctive identity. Though the houses may have contrasting reputations, students exhibit diverse qualities regardless of their house alignment. What unites the houses and students, in the end, is their shared experience at the one-of-a-kind Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The houses give students places to discover their strengths and form lifelong bonds.