"Harry's heart gave a huge leap every time he saw the word 'water' on a page, but more often than not it was merely 'Take two pints of water, half a pound of shredded mandrake leaves, and a newt [...] "
—Harry searches for references to water, hoping for help on the Second Task of the Triwizard Tournament[src]

Water is a colourless, odourless molecule consisting of two atoms of hydrogen and one of oxygen. Regular consumption of water is vital to the survival of humans and most other living organisms, and it has a number of other practical uses, including its use in bathing and cooking. It most often appears in the liquid form, but at high temperatures becomes a vapour, and when chilled becomes either ice, or snow when falling as precipitation.[1] Water can be found in large amounts in lakes, such as the Black Lake, or in oceans, in which it takes the form of salt water, water with a heavy concentration of salt.[2]


In the Wizarding world, water has a number of applications, such as its use in Potions, the preferred form being standard potioning water.[3] It can be conjured at will using magic, by using either the Water-Making Spell (Aguamenti)[4] or the Aqua Eructo Charm.[5] Lethe River Water is a special type of water with magical properties, collected from the Lethe, which is used as an ingredient in the Forgetfulness Potion, as it has memory loss properties.[6]

GF 26


Humans can normally not survive underwater, as gills are required to breathe in water, but wizards can survive using charms such as the Bubble-Head Charm, or magical plants like Gillyweed.[2]

A water jug is found in the Gryffindor Boys' Dormitory.[7]


An Augurey

The cry of the Augurey was once believed to signify impending death, but it was later discovered by Gulliver Pokeby that it merely signals the coming of rain, liquid water falling from the sky.[8]

Water can be used to extinguish most normal fires, although Fiendfyre is resistant to it, due to the potent nature of this curse.[9]

The Knight Bus is said to be able to travel anywhere and everywhere one wants on land, but can not travel anywhere underwater.[10]


Harry Potter's owl, Hedwig, had a water tray in her cage. When tropical birds arrived during the summer holidays of 1994, bearing letters from Sirius Black, she was "most reluctant" to let these "flashy intruders" drink from it. Also when Harry Potter was attempting to remember his vision of Lord Voldemort and his murder of Frank Bryce in the summer of 1994, trying to recall the details was said to be "like trying to keep water in his cupped hands," with the details "trickling away as fast as he tried to hold on to them."[11] A bit later that year, at the Quidditch World Cup, the Weasley family's tent had an interior complete with a bathroom and kitchen, but lacked a working tap. As such, Harry, Ron and Hermione used a tap provided at the campsite to get some water.[12]

At the beginning of the 1994-1995 school year, Peeves threw balloons filled with water at students arriving at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.[13]

In 1995, while searching for information that would help him survive the Second Task of the Triwizard Tournament, Harry Potter searched books feverishly for references to "water," but generally found unhelpful information such as Potions suggestions with phrases like "take two pints of water..."[2]

Later that year, the cauldron that was used in the Rebirth of Tom Riddle was said to be filled with what appeared to be water.[14]


Harry Potter casting the Water-Making Spell

The Horcrux cave was enchanted with a spell, cast by Tom Riddle, that caused all water-based magic to fail, making it such that the only source of water was the lake within the cave, attracting the attention of the Inferi. The Drink of Despair caused anyone who drank it to desperately crave water, thus laying the trap.[15]

In 1997, following the takeover of the British Ministry of Magic by Death Eaters, malfunctioning Atmospheric Charms caused rain in several offices, though the effects could be countered with Meteolojinx Recanto.[16]

In the traditional wizarding tale "The Fountain of Fair Fortune" from The Tales of Beedle the Bard , the titular fountain contained water that allegedly granted "Fair Fortune forevermore", but in fact carried no enchantment whatsoever.[17]

Water-based spells

Aguamenti PM

Hagrid and Harry using the Water-Making Spell to extinguish the fire burning Hagrid's Hut

Cedric Diggory using Bubble-Head Charm for the Tri-wizard Tournament 2nd Task (Concept Artwork)

Bubble-Head Charm

Types of water


A bottle of Lethe River Water


Notes and references

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