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"He had known Hagrid to present a vicious baby dragon with a teddy bear, seen him croon over giant scorpions with suckers and stingers, attempt to reason with his brutal giant of a half-brother, but this was perhaps the most incomprehensible of all his monster fancies: the giant talking spider, Aragog, who dwelled deep within the Forbidden Forest and which he and Ron had only narrowly escaped four years previously."
Harry Potter in his sixth year thinking about Hagrid's friendship with Aragog[src]

Aragog (c. 194220 April 1997) was an Acromantula owned by Rubeus Hagrid. Like the rest of his species, Aragog had a taste for human flesh and was able to communicate with humans vocally. In his youth, he was the size of a Pekingese and near the end of his life was about the size of a small elephant with an eighteen-foot leg span.[2]

Aragog had a wife, Mosag, and was the leader of a large Acromantula colony composed of all of his sons and daughters.[2] During his life, Aragog was accused of being Slytherin's Monster,[2] although the monster was really a Basilisk.[3] Ironically, all spiders feared the Basilisk, as it was their mortal enemy.[2] After Aragog died, some of his venom was taken by Horace Slughorn and was most likely stored in Horace's potion cabinet.[1]


Early life[]

"I come from a distant land. A traveller gave me to Hagrid when I was an egg."
— Aragog[src]

Aragog was originally brought as an egg in a distant land and came to Great Britain in the pocket of a traveller. Somehow, the egg came into possession of Rubeus Hagrid, who at the time was a student at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. After Aragog hatched from it, Hagrid kept him in a cupboard in one of the school's dungeons, feeding him scraps.[4]

1943 opening of the Chamber of Secrets[]

"They believed that I was the monster that dwells in what they call the Chamber of Secrets."
— Aragog[src]

Aragog in his youth at Hogwarts

In the 1942–1943 school year, Tom Marvolo Riddle, a descendant of Salazar Slytherin who would later become Lord Voldemort, opened the Chamber of Secrets and unleashed the resident monster, the Serpent of Slytherin, upon the castle to exterminate its Muggle-born population, those who were 'unworthy' to study magic.[5] Aragog was framed as being the monster and Hagrid was accused of being Slytherin's heir.[5] Several students were petrified in the school after the monster was unleashed, and after a student named Myrtle Warren died in a bathroom, the school's governors considered closing the school.[3] Tom, who considered Hogwarts his only home, found out about Aragog after discovering the young Hagrid tending to the Acromantula, and realised he could use Aragog as a scapegoat for the monster's rampage. Tom came to capture the creature, but Hagrid helped Aragog escape to the Forbidden Forest. Hagrid was later punished with expulsion from the school for his alleged role in the attacks and for this course of action.[4] Aragog, meanwhile, was sent to live in the Forbidden Forest.[2]

Hagrid, though expelled, was assigned the position of Gamekeeper at Hogwarts, by the intervention of Albus Dumbledore (who suspected his innocence), thus allowing him to stay in contact with Aragog.[4] Hagrid would visit Aragog now and then, bringing him food. On one particular visit, Hagrid brought Aragog a female Acromantula he could hopefully mate with, Mosag. The two Acromantulas started a large colony comprised of their children. Sometime later, Aragog became blind.[2]

1992-1993 Chamber reopening[]

"...Hagrid never opened the Chamber of Secrets. He was innocent."
— Harry Potter, after speaking to Aragog and barely surviving an attack, while realising that Aragog was also innocent[src]

In 1992, Salazar Slytherin's Basilisk was unleashed on the castle again. This time, however, the rampage did not result in any deaths, only the petrification of several Muggle-born students. Once again the governors considered closing the school due to the attacks. Governors of the school once again accused Hagrid of being the Heir of Slytherin. Hagrid vaguely told Ron Weasley and Harry Potter to 'follow the spiders,' but couched this advice in a statement to Minister for Magic, Cornelius Fudge, as they were both hiding under Harry's invisibility cloak. Though reluctantly, the two decided to continue their investigation of the monster, and follow the spiders like Hagrid had indirectly told them. This led them into the Forbidden Forest.[6]

Harry-potter2-movie-spider aragog

Harry Potter, Ron Weasley and Fang encounter Aragog and his offspring in the Forbidden Forest

Arriving at Aragog's Lair, they encountered Aragog and his colony. Aragog revealed to them Hagrid's innocence, the discovery of Myrtle's body in the bathroom and more of Riddle's scapegoating scheme, adding that he was not the Chamber's resident monster. While the ageing Acromantula revealed that all spider species such as his own feared the monster above other creatures and would never speak nor mention its name or anything about it, in no small part due to its malicious nature, he was able to give the boys a small clue: the monster was born in the castle and was an ancient creature that possessed such a terrifying ability and singular viciousness.

Aragog then warned the two that while he showed mercy to Hagrid, he would not deny his many children fresh meat if they were hungry—even if the boys were Hagrid's friends. However, thanks to the Flying Ford Anglia, Aragog's children failed to eat the two boys, as they both escaped the forest by flying away in the enchanted car.[2] After this, Harry and Ron actually found the real monster was in fact a Basilisk,[3] and the real heir was Tom Riddle, the true identity of the Dark Lord Voldemort.[5]

Ron and Harry's encounter with Aragog and his colony made Ron's boggart manifest in the shape of Aragog, due to his arachnophobia and general fear of the Acromantula eating him.[7][8]

Death and post-mortem[]

"Farewell, Aragog, king of arachnids, whose long and faithful friendship those who knew you won't forget! Though your body will decay, your spirit lingers on in the quiet, web-spun places of your forest home."
— Aragog's eulogy, delivered by Horace Slughorn[src]

In 1996, Harry and Hermione Granger, in an attempt to lure Dolores Umbridge into a trap in the Forbidden Forest, took the path towards Aragog's colony, but the immediate danger of running into Aragog's children was avoided when the local Centaurs intercepted them.[9]

Aragog Funeral

Horace Slughorn, Hagrid, Harry Potter, and Fang attend Aragog's funeral

That same year, Aragog contracted an unknown illness over the summer, and despite Hagrid's attempts to heal and comfort Aragog by feeding him giant grubs,[10] he eventually died on 20 April 1997. Before this time, it had been dangerous for Hagrid to go and visit Aragog because, sensing the giant spider's weakness, his family was getting rather restive and were prepared to eat Aragog’s corpse if they had to. When Aragog died, Hagrid was able to get Aragog's corpse out of the colony before his children could attempt to cannibalise his corpse, though barely as they would no longer hold back in an attempt to devour Hagrid. Aragog was buried in a deep pit near Hagrid's house the next evening. Aragog's funeral was attended by Hagrid, Harry, and Professor Horace Slughorn, who took the opportunity to 'acquire' Aragog's highly valuable venom.[1]

In 1998, the Acromantula colony was forced out of the Forbidden Forest by Voldemort, his Death Eaters and his assembled army of dark creatures, who then established their camp there as a prelude to the Battle of Hogwarts. Aragog's children survived, however, and invaded Hogwarts, attacking both the Death Eaters and the defenders of Hogwarts. It is unknown if the colony and its population survived following the conclusion of the battle, which was in favour of the Order of the Phoenix.[11]

Physical description[]

"And from the middle of the misty, domed web, a spider the size of a small elephant emerged, very slowly. There was grey in the black of his body and legs, and each of the eyes on his ugly, pincered head was milky white. He was blind."
— Harry and Ron witnessing Aragog for the first time in his lair[src]

In 1993, Aragog was described as being roughly the size of a small elephant, with a grey and black hairy body, with milky white eyes, as he was blind.[2] However, it was likely his eyes were formerly black, like most other Acromantulas.

Personality and traits[]

"Go? I think not. My sons and daughters do not harm Hagrid, on my command. But I cannot deny them fresh meat, when it wanders so willingly into our midst. Good-bye, friend of Hagrid."
— Aragog offering up Harry and Ron as food for his children[src]

Aragog's eight-eyed stare

Aragog had a close friendship with his former owner, Hagrid. He admitted that it would have been his instinct to try to attack humans, but he restrained himself out of respect and gratitude for Hagrid, and unlike the Basilisk herself, he never personally harmed a human in his life. He was presumed to be a good father to his many children, understanding their taste for human flesh and allowing them to attack and eat anyone they wanted when they were hungry. Hagrid was the only human that Aragog stopped his sons and daughters from attacking. One such case of this was when Ron Weasley and Harry Potter found Aragog, however, this was more than likely an act of parental care as opposed to anger or hatred as Ron comes to think. However, the two managed to escape by sheer luck, as the Weasleys' enchanted Ford Anglia emerged to extract them from the danger.[2]

"We do not speak of it! We do not name it! I never even told Hagrid the name of that dread creature, though he asked me, many times."
— Aragog's fear of Basilisks[src]

Aragog, like all spiders, feared Basilisks (though the personality of the Basilisk lurking in Hogwarts was most likely a contributing factor), and would not speak of one, not even to Hagrid himself, even though he had asked him about the creature many times. The way that Aragog would not speak their name or of them was similar to the way that wizards and witches (amongst other creatures like house-elves and goblins) would not speak Voldemort's name, or discuss him even obliquely any more than was absolutely necessary, which was appropriate since he himself commanded the creature in his youth.[2]


  • Aragog comes from the words 'Ara' which comes from 'arachnid', which is the class spiders belong to. 'Gog' and 'Magog' are biblical names.
  • Possibly derived from the Greek word 'agog', meaning 'leader', from which the modern English 'demagogue' is an iteration.

Behind the scenes[]

"Help rescue Harry Potter and Ron from the giant spider Aragog in the Dark Forest!"
— Official description of the LEGO set[src]
Lego aragog

LEGO version of Aragog

Aragog Plush from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

An Aragog plush toy from The Making of Harry Potter and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

  • In the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Aragog was voiced by Julian Glover. The film also changed his dwelling in the castle from a cupboard to a treasure chest-like box.
  • It is possible that Aragog could have been inspired by Shelob, another giant spider, from The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.
  • A LEGO version of Aragog was released, entitled 4727 Aragog in the Dark Forest. A second was released in 2010 in which he appeared, named 4738 Hagrid's Hut.LEGO Product page for 4727 Aragog in the Dark Forest
  • In the The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, visitors can purchase a plush version of Aragog.
  • In the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Aragog was a massive animatronic creature. Rupert Grint, the actor who plays Ron Weasley, is afraid of spiders just as much as his character is, and said the scenes with Aragog were easily the scariest scenes to film.[12]
  • An error in the accusation against Hagrid for having unleashed the monster from the Chamber of Secrets is that an Acromantula cannot petrify or kill with its stare, unlike a Basilisk.
  • In Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, Aragog can be seen in the Forbidden Forest scene. When the riders encounter Aragog, he squirts fake venom, which is actually water. Aragog is a giant prop for the ride, and he doesn't seem to do anything other than squirt fake venom.
  • According to Harry Potter: The Creature Vault, Aragog 'was such a beloved character that the design crew wore black armbands while the spider's final scene (Aragog's funeral) was filmed.'
  • The animatronic puppet of Aragog can be found on display at The Making of Harry Potter studio tour in Leavesden.
  • In 2017, in celebration of the 20th anniversary of 'Harry Potter' franchise, arachnologists Anton A. Nadolny and Alireza Zamani named a new species of Iranian wolf spiders (Lycosidae) after Aragog, as Lycosa aragogi. The single specimen was collected on 26 April 2016, almost 19 years to the day after Aragog died (20 April 1997 in the world of the book), according to the 'Harry Potter' series, by J.K. Rowling.[13]


The Harry Potter Wiki has 75 images related to Aragog.

Notes and references[]

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