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- "Wenlock first scribbled down her ground-breaking theorem on the magical properties of the number seven at breakfast one day apparently on the back of an envelope, using her usual invisible ink. She then proceeded to send her cousin a letter, using what she later believed to be the very envelope concealing the theorem."
- — Miranda Goshawk, Book of Spells[src]
Bridget Wenlock (1202 – 1285) was a famous thirteenth-century English witch and Arithmancer, and the first to establish the magical properties of the number seven. She was mainly known for being extremely protective of her theorems, therefore writing many of her ideas down in invisible ink.
Bridget Wenlock was born in the year 1202, in Tinworth, Cornwall. In her youth, she attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from around 1213 to 1220, where she defied the stereotype of intelligent wizards only coming from Ravenclaw by being sorted into Hufflepuff. She presumably took and studied Arithmancy class at Hogwarts from her third year onwards.
Wenlock, like a number of other magical researchers, was very protective of her discoveries; her paranoia was so that she wrote exclusively in Invisible Ink, upside-down, back-to-front and in atrocious handwriting. She was also noted for her absent-mindedness, managing to promptly lose scraps of paper in which she had scribbled invisible notes. Because of this, it was not an unusual sight to see her retracing her steps through her hometown, attempting to use the Revealing Charm on every scrap of paper she came across, in search of a lost Arithmancy calculation.
It was one day, during breakfast, that Wenlock wrote the immensely famous theorem that supported the magical properties of the number seven. She wrote it down on what she thought was the back of an envelope, in the usual Invisible Ink. That same day, she posted a letter to her cousin, using what she later realised was the envelope in which she had written the theorem. Wenlock seized her broom at once, and managed to overtake the owl carrying the letter mid-flight but the owl refused to give anyone the letter but its addressee. After several nips and scratches, Wenlock had to resort to simply following the owl to her cousin's house in John O'Groats, around 600 miles away.
When she finally retrieved the envelope from her cousin, a Revealing Charm revealed that it contained no more than a cake recipe. It was only when she returned to Tinworth that Wenlock found out that her calculations were scrawled on a sugar packet that was still sitting on her kitchen table. It was precisely this theorem that made her such a celebrated Arithmancer for centuries to come.
Death and post-mortem
There was also a portrait of her hung on the Sixth-floor corridor of Hogwarts Castle, hiding a secret passage to the Portrait Room (the password was Snafflejack). There was also a bust of her on the Fat Lady's Corridor, on the seventh floor of the Castle.
During his third year at Hogwarts School, sometime between 1987 and 1990, Gabriel Truman got into a big trouble for duelling a Ravenclaw Prefect, who insisted that Bridget Wenlock had come from his house. Instead of a week of detentions, Professor Sprout let him off with a warning and a box of coconut ice.
Magical abilities and skills
- Arithmancy: Wenlock was a highly accomplished and celebrated Arithmancer, who notably discovered the magical properties of the number seven. She devised many impressive numerical calculations throughout her career and was highly protective of her theorems that she had created. Her knowledge and experience in this field of magic warranted her inclusion on her own Chocolate Frog Card.
- Charms: Wenlock was also talented with charm-work, as she was capable of casting the Revealing Charm, which she used to reveal the contents of many of her own personal mathematical notes and papers written in Invisible Ink.
Behind the scenes
- Interestingly, both Bridget Wenlock's first and last name are each seven letters long.
- Her habit of scribbling her theories on paper scraps may be a reference to mathematician Pierre de Fermat who was infamous for writing his theories in the margins of his books. The most famous of these is Fermat's Last Theorem, which wasn't proven until 1994, over 300 years after his death.
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (video game) (Appears on a Famous Wizard Card)
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (video game) (Appears on a Famous Wizard Card)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (video game) (Appears as statue) (Appears in portrait(s))
- J. K. Rowling's official site (First appearance)
- Pottermore (Appears on a Famous Wizard Card)
- Wonderbook: Book of Spells
- Harry Potter: Wizards Unite (Mentioned only)
Notes and references
- Wonderbook: Book of Spells - see this video
- According to Pottermore she died in 1285 (see image)
- J. K. Rowling's official site
- Harry Potter: Wizards Unite
- Pottermore introduction for Hufflepuffs (transcription available heredead link)
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (video game)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (video game) - (PC version)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (video game) - (Console versions)
|Professors: Septima Vector|
|Known Arithmancers: Sage Bragnam · Lukas Karuzos · Chiara Lobosca's father · Bridget Wenlock|
|Textbooks: Numerology and Grammatica · New Theory of Numerology|
|Arithmancy at Hogwarts: Arithmancy (class) · Classroom 7A · Advanced Arithmancy Studies|