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" [...] and Araminta Meliflua... cousin of my mother's... tried to force through a Ministry Bill to make Muggle-hunting legal [...]'"
Sirius Black to Harry Potter on Araminta[src]

Araminta Meliflua Black[3] was Walburga Black’s cousin, and Sirius Black’s first or second cousin once removed. She was noted for her hatred of Muggles. She once tried to get the Ministry of Magic to pass a law that would make Muggle-hunting legal. The bill was most likely turned down.

Etymology

  • Araminta is a name of uncertain origin. It may be an elaborated form of Aminta, which derives from the Greek word amyntor, meaning "defender." Araminta Ross was the birth name of African-American abolitionist Harriet Tubman.
  • Meliflua is presumably based on the English adjective "mellifluous," which means "sweet-sounding" and derives from the Latin mellifluus, "flowing like honey".

Behind the scenes

  • Although Sirius Black pointed out Araminta to his godson, Harry Potter, on the Black family tapestry, her name did not appear on the copy of the family tree J. K. Rowling donated to a charity auction in 2006. It's unknown why this is, though the Black Family Tree contains other errors.
  • Araminta's exact relationship to Walburga is unknown, but there are several clues: Scholastic gives Araminta the surname Black, she is depicted on the Black family tree in the books but not on the one auctioned for charity, and she must be more closely related to Walburga than to Walburga's second cousin and husband Orion for their son to remember her as Walburga's cousin alone. This leaves several possibilities:
    • Araminta is descended from Walburga's grandfather Cygnus Black. Walburga is the daughter of his eldest son Pollux, who had three younger siblings: Cassiopeia, who never married, Marius, who was disowned for being a Squib, and Dorea married Charlus Potter and had one son. It is unlikely that a Squib's child would promote muggle-hunting or be acknowledged by the Black family, so Araminta might be an illegitimate child of Cassiopeia or Dorea. In this case, she would have been left off the auctioned family tree to avoid the scandal of illegitimacy.
    • Araminta and Walburga are cousins through Walburga's mother Irma Crabbe or her grandmother Violetta Bulstrode. Both Crabbes/Bulstrodes married members of the House of Black and had children, but Araminta's branch of the Black family is not descended from Phineas Nigellus Black and therefore do not appear on the segment of the family tree auctioned for charity, which only showed his descendants.
    • Araminta and Walburga are cousins through Walburga's mother Irma Crabbe or her grandmother Violetta Bulstrode, and Araminta married into a branch of the Black family that is not descended from Phineas Nigellus and therefore do not appear on the auctioned segment of the Black family tree.

Appearances

Notes and references

  1. Araminta has to be alive at least seventeen years before 1995 (1978) to be of age to petition for a law to be passed at a point pre-1995. However, as a cousin of Walburga's, she may be around the same age.
  2. This is most likely, as she was not blasted off the Black family tree
  3. Wizard's Challenge at the Scholastic Official Site
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