A Beast was one of the three classifications used by the British Ministry of Magic to catalogue the various magical creatures that inhabited the wizarding world (the others being Spirit and Being).[1]


Loosely defined, a Beast was a magical creature that did not have sufficient intelligence to understand the laws of the magical community, nor bear part of the responsibility in shaping those laws. This definition was laid down by Minister for Magic Grogan Stump in 1811, and the Beast Division was formed as part of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures. There were even extremists who campaigned for Muggles to be classified as Beasts.[1]

However, there were exceptions. Centaurs and Merpeople both requested to be classified as Beasts, refusing "Being" status because they objected to some of the other creatures they would have to share "Being" status with, such as Hags and Vampires. With this in mind, teaching material on them noted that they were to be treated with great respect.[1]

Acromantulas, Manticores, the Sphinx and Erklings would have all qualified for Being status since they were capable of intelligent speech, but since they would try to eat any person that goes near them, and were vicious and bloodthirsty, became dangerous when the things they were guarding were threatened, or when they were given the wrong answer to their puzzles or riddles, and would try to eat children and shoot darts at people respectively, they were classified as Beasts. Additionally, werewolves were only classified as Beasts in their transformed state. When there was no full moon they retained their Being status like any other human. However, they were still also classified as sentient by the Ministry of Magic.[1]


Notes and references

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