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"The 'Dancing Feet' spell has its origins in ancient Italy, but is best remembered for its improper usage by Warlock Zaccaria Innocenti who is credited with conjuring a 'dance' within Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD."
— History of this spell, Cast-a-Spell handbook[6]

The Dancing Feet Spell[3] (Tarantallegra)[1] was a charm[3] that made a target's legs spasm wildly out of control,[3] making it appear as though they were dancing. It worked on both living and inanimate targets, so long as it had legs.[6] It was mainly used to humiliate a victim,[1] but it could be also be used in duelling.[1][7][8]


This Dancing Feet Spell was created in ancient Italy but was best remembered for its improper usage by warlock Zaccaria Innocenti who was credited with conjuring a 'dance' within Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, triggering its eruption.[6]


"Essential Tip # 1: You must have an unobstructed view of your subject in order to properly cast the Tarantallegra.
Essential Tip # 2: In order to make a subject dance, it must first possess legs (a spell for growing legs appears in the advanced CAST-A-SPELL training handbook).
— Tips on casting, Cast-a-Spell handbook[6]

In order to be successfully cast, the spell required a clear, unobstructed view of the target. The spell worked on both living and inanimate targets, but the target in question must possess legs for the spell to work properly, otherwise, the spell might provoke an undesired reaction, such as in the case of Mt. Vesuvius.[6]

Known uses

"Malfoy pointed his wand at Harry’s knees, choked, “Tarantallegra!” and the next second Harry’s legs began to jerk around out of his control in a kind of quickstep."
— Draco Malfoy using this spell on Harry Potter at the Duelling Club[src]
Caster(s) Date Notes
Zaccaria Innocenti 79 AD Conjured a 'dance' within Mount Vesuvius, triggering its eruption and killing over a thousand people.[6]
Unidentified third-year 1987–1988 school year Used this spell on a second-year jokingly.[9]
First-years (possibly) June 1992

It is possible this was the spell used to make a pineapple dance across the classroom in the first-year Charms exam.[10]

Dancing pinapple.jpg
Draco Malfoy 17 December, 1992 Cast this spell on Harry Potter in 1992 at the first and last meeting of the Duelling Club.[1]
Albus Dumbledore June, 1996 Albus Dumbledore used this spell at Hogwarts to make the suits of armour dance.[11]
Antonin Dolohov 18 June, 1996 Used it against Neville Longbottom during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries making Neville smash the prophecy of Harry and the Dark Lord.[7]
Harry Potter September, 2020 Harry used this spell while duelling Draco Malfoy in his home.[8]

Known practitioners


The Tarantella is a dance originating in Italy. It was believed to cure the effects of the bite of a Tarantula by causing the victim to sweat out the toxin. It wasn't until centuries later that scientists determined the Black Widow was actually the venomous spider in question; people merely blamed the Tarantula because of its size.[12] Allegra may be derived from allegro, a musical tempo meaning "quick and lively"; or simply from the word "leg" as this is the only body part affected by the charm.

Behind the scenes

The wand movement shown in Harry Potter: Puzzles & Spells


Notes and references

Charms (class)
PS Wingardium Leviosa feather.gif
Charm-book writers and developers
Blagdon Blay · Daisy Pennifold · Delfina Crimp · Miranda Goshawk · Jarleth Hobart · Basil Horton · Helixa Hyslop · Syna Hyslop · Randolph Keitch · Levina Monkstanley · Orabella Nuttley · Mnemone Radford · Scarpin · Elliot Smethwyck · Felix Summerbee · Violeta Stitch
Professors Fortinbras · Filius Flitwick · Unidentified 19th-century professor · Unidentified male professor
Textbooks Achievements in Charming · Extreme Incantations · Quintessence: A Quest · The Standard Book of Spells
Charms studied at Hogwarts
Anti-Alohomora Charm · Ascendio · Banishing Charm (Depulso) · Blackboard Writing Spell · Blue sparks · Box Blasting Charm (Cistem Aperio) · Bubble-Head Charm · Cheering Charm · Cleaning Charm · Colour Change Charm (Colovaria) · Confundus Charm (Confundo) · Counter-charm for hiccoughs · Dancing Feet Spell (Tarantallegra) · Descendo · Disarming Charm (Expelliarmus) · Disillusionment Charm · Drought Charm · Entrancing Enchantments (Theoretically) · Eradication Spell (Deletrius) · Engorgement Charm (Engorgio) · Extinguishing Spell · Exploding Charm (Bombarda) · Fire-Making Spell (Incendio) · Freezing Charm (Immobulus) · Freezing Spell (Glacius) · Full Body-Bind Curse (Petrificus Totalus) · General Counter-Spell (Finite Incantatem) · Gouging Spell (Defodio) · Growth Charm · Ice Jinx · Knitting Charm · Knockback Jinx (Flipendo) · Leg-Locker Curse (Locomotor Mortis) · Levitation Charm (Wingardium Leviosa) · Locking Spell (Colloportus) · Locomotion Charm (Locomotor) · Lumos Solem Spell (Lumos Solem) · Mending Charm (Reparo) · Memory Charm (Obliviate) · Muffliato Charm (Muffliato) · Nonverbal spells · Pack Charm (Pack) · Red Sparks (Vermillious) · Reductor Curse (Reducto) · Scouring Charm (Scourgify) · Seize and pull charm (Carpe Retractum) · Severing Charm (Diffindo) · Shrinking Charm (Reducio) · Silencing Charm (Silencio) · Slowing Charm (Arresto Momentum) · Skurge Charm (Skurge) · Softening Charm (Spongify) · Spell for growing legs · Substantive Charm · Summoning Charm (Accio) · Tickling Charm (Rictusempra) · Unlocking Charm (Alohomora) · Vinegar to wine spell · Wand-Extinguishing Charm (Nox) · Wand-Lighting Charm (Lumos) · Lumos Maxima · Water-Making Spell (Aguamenti)
The Standard Book of Spells
Book of Spells 1.png
Grade 1 · Grade 2 · Grade 3 · Grade 4 · Grade 5 · Grade 6 · Grade 7
Charms included in the series: Dancing Feet Spell (Tarantallegra) · Disarming Charm (Expelliarmus) · Engorgement Charm (Engorgio) · Fire-Making Spell (Incendio) · Freezing Charm (Immobulus) · General Counter-Spell (Finite Incantatem) · Levitation Charm (Wingardium Leviosa) · Locking Spell (Colloportus) · Memory Charm (Obliviate) · Mending Charm (Reparo) · Nonverbal spell · Severing Charm (Diffindo) · Skurge Charm (Skurge) · Softening Charm (Spongify) · Substantive Charm · Summoning Charm (Accio) · Tickling Charm (Rictusempra) · Unlocking Charm (Alohomora) · Wand-Lighting Charm (Lumos)