"Once you’ve arrived inside Gryffindor Tower, come inside and be welcomed by the roaring fire, stuffed armchairs, and the great view we have from our windows. Our dormitories are reached by climbing the winding mahogany staircase, decorated with crimson and gold. As I said, there's plenty of gold around the tower. Our four-posters are covered with thick scarlet blankets (we have quite windy nights up in the towers) and are embroidered with gold. Gold chandeliers cast warm glows all around."
—Description of the tower[src]

Gryffindor Tower, which consists of the Gryffindor Common Room and the dormitories,[1] serves as the living quarters for students in Gryffindor House at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. In general, it sports several shades of red and gold. The fireplace mantle is adorned with a portrait of a lion (associated with the house). Gryffindor Tower is one of the three tallest towers of Hogwarts Castle, alongside Ravenclaw Tower and the Astronomy Tower.


Fat Lady portrait

Gryffindor corridor and the Fat Lady's portrait

The entrance to the Gryffindor common room is concealed under the portrait of the Fat Lady, on the lavish Gryffindor Landing.

To enter one must present the Fat Lady with the correct password of the week. However, getting the password wrong means the student will have to wait the day for another student to come by and pass them the code.[2]

Common Room

"...the portrait swung forward to reveal a round hole in the wall. They all scrambled through it — and found themselves in the Gryffindor common room, a cosy, round room full of squashy armchairs."
—Description of the common room[src]
GryffindorCommonRoom PM

The common room is a circular room where Gryffindor students can relax after a long day of studying. It is full of squashy armchairs, tables, and a bulletin board where school notices, ads, lost posters, etc. can be posted. The common room is decorated in several shades of red, which is associated with the house. The common room is comfortable, but not more comfortable than the Hufflepuff basement.[3]

There are many windows that look out onto the grounds of the school, and a large fireplace dominates one wall. The mantle of the fireplace is adorned with a portrait of a lion.[4] The fireplace is also connected to the Floo Network, but as it is extremely public except in the dead of night.The walls are decorated with scarlet tapestries that depict witches and wizards, but also various animals. There are also bookcases located in the room, filled with various novels.[5]

GryffindorCommonRoom1 PM

The common room is usually where celebration parties are held after Gryffindor Quidditch victories, or when Harry Potter completed a task for the Triwizard Tournament. It was also the location for Harry and Ginny Weasley's first kiss following Gryffindor's Quidditch Cup victory in 1997. The common room fireplace was used on several occasions by Sirius Black to contact Harry while he was on the run from the Ministry of Magic.


B1C10M1 Gryffindor Dormitory

Gryffindor boys dormitory

The Gryffindor dormitories are also located in the Tower, with two doors leading off from the common room that open to spiral staircases. There are two staircases opening off the common room into the Tower itself: the boys’ staircase on which the seven boys’ dormitories are located (one for each year) and the girls’ staircase, on which the seven girls’ dormitories are located (one for each year).

The girls’ staircase is under a spell so that if a boy sets foot on it and persists for a few steps, a wailing klaxon goes off and the staircase turns into a stone slide, sending them and anyone else on the stairs sailing to the bottom. According to Hogwarts: A History, the founders believed that girls were more trustworthy than boys, so that while the girls’ staircase is enchanted to prevent boys from getting in, the boys’ staircase does not carry a reciprocal enchantment. Hermione Granger went into the boys' room on several occasions. This also allowed a possessed Ginny Weasley to sneak in and steal Tom Riddle's diary.

Known passwords

Date Passwords
1991-1992 school year Caput Draconis (Latin for "Dragon's Head")
Pig Snout
1992-1993 school year Wattlebird
1993-1994 school year Fortuna Major (Latin for "greater luck")
Scurvy Cur
1994-1995 school year Balderdash
Banana Fritters
Fairy Lights
1995-1996 school year Mimbulus mimbletonia
1996-1997 school year Abstinence
Quid Agis (Latin for "How are you")

In the films

The Gryffindor Common Room as seen in the films differs slightly from its description in the books in that it is not a perfect circle, and that both the boys' and girls' dormitories are accessed via the same staircase: boys on the left, girls on the right.

Behind the scenes

Owl flying to Gryffindor Tower

Gryffindor Tower at one corner of the Quad

  • In the film adaptations of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, we can see the Gryffindor Boys' Dormitory is shown to be located in a small tower (see above) at one corner of the Paved Courtyard close to the Clock Tower. This is consistent with the Fat Lady's location in Philosopher's Stone, but it is inconsistent with Fat Lady's location in the third film and fifth and sixth video games (in the Grand Staircase Tower). One possible explanation is that the portrait is a secret passageway or shortcut which connects the two areas of the castle.
  • In the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry and Ginny have their first kiss in the Room of Requirement instead of the Gryffindor common room, due to the Quidditch match and Harry's detention with Snape being cut.
  • The common room as depicted in the video game adaptations of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is a near-perfect replica of the common room as seen in the films. One very subtle difference is that in the video games the stairs leading to the dormitories only go up, creating the misconception that there's only one dorm room for the boys (shared by Harry and the other boys in his year) and one for the girls. In the films (although it is difficult to notice unless you pay attention) you can see that, in addition to going up, the stairs also lead down (presumably to more dormitories). In the books it is stated that Harry's dorm is located at the top of the stairs.
  • Gryffindor is the only Common Room whose guardian/entrance is known to have changed at some point, the Fat Lady being replaced by Sir Cadogan.


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The Gryffindor Tower as a LEGO set

See also

Notes and references

Hogwarts Castle
Astronomy Tower · Bell towers · Boathouse Bell Tower · Central Tower · Clock Tower · Dark Tower · Founders' Tower · Gryffindor Tower · Headmaster's Tower · Herbology Tower · Hospital tower · Hufflepuff Duelling Turrets · Marble Staircase Tower · North Tower · Octagon Tower · Pepperpot · Quidditch tower · Ravenclaw Tower · Right Long Gallery tower · Second-floor girls' lavatory tower · Small Locked Tower · South Tower · Stone Bridge Tower · Suspension Bridge towers ·The Quad battlements · Training Grounds Tower · Turris Magnus · Turris Medius · Upper Hall tower · Viaduct Courtyard checkpoint towers · West Tower · West Tower battlements
Portraits, statues and other artwork located in the towers
Albus Dumbledore · Armando Dippet · Valeria Myriadd · Dexter Fortescue · Dilys Derwent · Oraclitus Spheer · Fat Lady · Sir Cadogan · Slytherin knight · Hufflepuff lady · Heliotrope Wilkins · Severus Snape · Phineas Nigellus Black · Vulpus · Quentin Trimble · Limebert · Ravenclaw lady · Rowena Ravenclaw · Walter Aragon · Quidditch player · Professor · Female etiquette teacher · Gryffindor lady · Gryffindor man · Gryffindor man · Gryffindor man · Gryffindor seeker · Red-haired witch · Young maiden · Vase with flowers · Group of women in crinolines · Sinister-looking monks
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