"But the truly remarkable thing were the tiny ink dots moving around it, each labelled with a name in minuscule writing. Astounded, Harry bent over it. A labelled dot in the top left corner showed that Professor Dumbledore was pacing inhis study; the caretaker’s cat, Mrs Norris, was prowling the second floor; and Peeves the Poltergeist was currently bouncing around the trophy room."

The Homonculous Charm (incantation unknown) is a charm that, when cast onto a map, will enable its possessor to track the movements of every person in the mapped area, through labelled dots that moved around the parchment.[1]


"The magic used in the map's creation is advanced and impressive; it includes the Homonculous Charm, enabling the possessor of the map to track the movements of every person in the castle, and it was also enchanted to forever repel (as insultingly as possible) the curiosity of their nemesis, Severus Snape."
—Description of the magic involved in the map's creation[src]

After charting the grounds and halls of Hogwarts Castle in the 1970s, on a piece of parchment that would go by the name of Marauder's Map, James Potter, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew cast this spell on it[1], along with a charm to insult Severus Snape. This artefact proved quite useful to the foursome (commonly termed "the Marauders") through the years, until it was confiscated by Argus Filch in their final year at Hogwarts.


The charm has a powerful effect in that it is not fooled by various methods of concealment and disguise, such as invisibility cloaks (including the fabled Cloak of Invisibility)[2], the Polyjuice Potion[3] and the Animagus transformation.[2]


"Homonculous" is a variant spelling of "Homunculus," which is a term used to refer to any representation of a human being.[4]

Behind the scenes

  • In the books, this spell causes moving ink dots to appear on the Map. In the films, they take the forms of footprints.


Notes and references

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