At least some content in this article is derived from information featured in Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. Spoilers will be present within the article.
Cecil Lee (fl. 1980s) was a wizard in the employment of the Ministry of Magic, where he worked in the Werewolf Capture Unit, part of the Beast Division of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures. He was the uncle of Barnaby Lee.
Early life and schooling
During his formative years, he attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he did not seem to be a particularly gifted student: he remembered little of Charms class apart from where his seat was. According to himself, however, he "[did] well" on his N.E.W.T.s.
Career in the Werewolf Capture Unit
Sometime after school, he joined the Ministry of Magic's Werewolf Capture Unit. During his career, he hunted werewolves with extreme prejudice, and reportedly fought and captured several werewolves: he claimed to have had several run-ins with Fenrir Greyback, a who gained notoriety as the most savage werewolf of them all — though, by his own admission, he never managed to catch him.
According to his nephew Barnaby, work was Cecil Lee's "greatest passion" (closely followed by topiary and the sculpting of his prized rose bushes); for that reason, he reportedly spent a period of more than two years without taking a single day off. When Magical Maintenance was angling for a pay raise and had the Ministry's enchanted windows display nothing but hurricanes for two months, the Werewolf Capture Unit sent Cecil to talk to them.
Lee was an admirer of Gilderoy Lockhart, who he was convinced was the most gifted wizard in the world. He believed Lockhart's (later proven false) account of his victory over the Wagga Wagga Werewolf using the complex Homorphus Charm; Lee would himself supposedly use this charm to "stop werewolves in their tracks" during the course of his duties. Lee also at one point attended a special symposium with the celebrity author, in which he learned and took it as fact that clear skies are the perfect weather for hunting werewolves because bright sunlight makes them weaker (which is patently false).
Greyback attack on Hogwarts
After a pack of werewolves led by Fenrir Greyback attacked Hogwarts on Hallowe'en during the 1980s, then Headmaster Albus Dumbledore sent an owl to the Ministry of Magic soliciting their assistance, who in response, sent Cecil to investigate. With the help of Jacob's sibling, he went to look for clues about the attack. They started by interviewing Chiara Lobosca and staff members Rolanda Hooch, Argus Filch, and Filius Flitwick.
The following full moon, when Greyback arrived for a second attack, Cecil Lee and Jacob's sibling successfully captured Greyback using an Incarcerous Spell, only for him to escape again not long after. Nevertheless, Lee thanked the student for their help, and presented them with honorary membership of the Werewolf Capture Unit, complete with their own uniform.
Cecil Lee had chocolate brown hair and emerald green eyes. He was tall and lean, and had a thick brown moustache. Animals, such as Mrs. Norris, reacted in an hostile manner to him, which he attributed to his "very masculine scent".
Personality and traits
- "Unfortunately, we didn't find any clues to the werewolves' whereabouts… I never noticed how well those words go together… From now on, I think I'll call a werewolves' whereabouts, werewolfabouts… Save more time for capturing werewolves by combining two words into one. It's ideas like that that make me the pride of the Werewolf Capture Unit."
- — Cecil Lee[src]
A rather bumptious and opinionated man, Cecil Lee was an immensely inflexible and intolerant individual who apparently subscribed strongly to the common view on werewolves in the magical community, as he frequently voiced the opinion that all werewolves should be eradicated because "there's nothing [good] left of a person once they're bitten." Even when faced with a werewolf-offspring in the form of a pup from the Forbidden Forest wolf pack, he refused to believe that it had werewolf blood in its veins, insisting that if it did, it would have gone for their throats. It would appear that his stance softened somewhat, however, when he saw a werewolf come to the defence of a student that was about to be attacked by Fenrir Greyback, after which he brought the unconscious body of Chiara Lobosca to the office of Albus Dumbledore rather than taking her back to the Ministry.
While unafraid to admit that he feared Fenrir Greyback for his savage villainy, he was nevertheless a man who was decisive in both thought and deed, and ultimately unflappable when it mattered and confronted him and his pack, and even placed himself in front of Jacob's sibling to protect them from the attackers.
Cecil Lee was not very intelligent, which appears to be a family trait: he once proudly remarked that his nephew Barnaby Lee (himself noted not to be the brightest student), was the sharpest person in the family "by a wide margin". He had a somewhat bumbling disposition (as demonstrated, for example, by the time he was investigating Greyback's attack on Hogwarts and he decided to interview Madam Hooch for the sole reason her surname rhymed with "pooch" which reminded him of werewolves) and was not very good with words, mixing up terms like "matriculate" and "meticulous", "euphonium" and "euphemism", or "symphony" and "symposium". When speaking about the usefulness of books, he remarked "they make excellent projectiles, and decent pillows." He was among the many to buy many of Gilderoy Lockhart's tall tales, believing in many of his dubious work that he in fact stole credit from more accommplished wizards.
Another trait he shared with his nephew Barnaby was a large appetite, having apparently raided the Hogwarts kitchens when he was supposed to be hunting werewolves.
Magical abilities and skills
- Tracking skills: A fully-fledged member of the Werewolf Capture Unit, Cecil was able to detect if werewolves had been present in an area, distinguish werewolf saliva by its appearance and texture, and distinguish werewolf hair from other hair with a glance.
- Charms: He claimed to be able to perform the "immensely complex" Homorphus Charm to return werewolves to their human form, although he failed to demonstrate this during his failed attempt at stopping Fenrir Greyback and his pack in their tracks during their attack on Hogwarts.
- Transfiguration: He was able to effectively use the Incarcerous Spell to restrain Fenrir Greyback with conjured ropes. Given how Conjuration is a highly difficult branch of transfiguration, this demonstrates that he was skilled in this field.
- Wand: Cecil Lee owned a wand, which was of an unknown length, wood and core material.
- Lupine Lawlessness: Why Lycanthropes Don't Deserve to Live: Cecil owned a copy of this book on Werewolves, given his career.
Behind the scenes
- In both appearance and general demeanour, Cecil Lee appears to be a reference to the humorously inept Keystone Cops, fictional incompetent policemen featured in several Keystone Film Company slapstick comedies in the 1910s.
- Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery (First appearance)
Notes and references
- He had already left Hogwarts and was working at the Ministry in 1984, meaning he was likely of age.
- "World Exclusive Interview with J K Rowling," South West News Service, 8 July 2000 - "Hogwarts just serves Britain and Ireland."
- Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1, Side Quest "Hallowe'en Feast"
- Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 7, Chapter 6 (A Window of Opportunity)