'Harry Potter' Fan Accidentally Uncovers 'American Hogwarts' Houses

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By: Cole Delbyck

UPDATE: A representative from Pottermore responded to our request for comment, but would not confirm the the authenticity of the names for the four houses.

"Last January, the name and general location of the wizarding school Ilvermorny was revealed in new writing by J.K. Rowling that was posted on pottermore.com," the statement reads. "Pottermore has not confirmed details about the school since then. We will release and confirm new information about Ilvermorny in the near future."

PREVIOUSLY: A round of Butterbeers on us!

A Potterhead claims he's discovered the names of the four houses of the North American Wizarding School after stumbling upon a source code on J.K. Rowling's Pottermore website.

The code made reference to a soon-to-be-released online sorting hat ceremony for the school better known as Ilvermorny, which Rowling has insinuated will play a role in the upcoming continuation of the "Harry Potter" film franchise, "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them."

The fan in question, Federico Ian Cervantez, shared his findings on Reddit and later explained his approach in a LinkedIn post for the tech savvy among us. Although his discovery has yet to be confirmed by an official sources, Hypable verified the code was indeed found on the Pottermore servers.

And now (drumroll, please), the alleged names of the four houses of Ilvermorny: Horned Serpent, Wampus, Thunderbird and Pukwudgie.

Unlike Hogwarts, the names are derived from magical animals, instead of famous witches and wizards. Harry Potter fan site The Leaky Cauldron also notes that the names have connections to Native American folklore, a topic Rowling problematically tackled on the website earlier this year. After the release of a story about "History of Magic in North America," many believed the author relied on large generalizations and stereotypes of Native American communities.

Read the ever-helpful Wikipedia descriptions of the animals below to better understand what type of student might be sorted into each house.

The Wampus is "a creature in American folklore, variously described as some kind of fearsome variation of a cougar."

The Thunderbird is a "legendary creature in certain North American indigenous peoples' history and culture. It is considered a supernatural bird of power and strength. It is especially important, and frequently depicted, in the art, songs and oral histories of many Pacific Northwest Coast cultures, and is found in various forms among the peoples of the American Southwest, Great Lakes, and Great Plains."

The Pukwudgie is "a two-to-three-foot-tall (61 to 91 cm) being from the Wampanoag folklore. Pukwudgies' features resemble those of a human, but with enlarged noses, fingers and ears. Their skin is described as being a smooth grey, and at times has been known to glow."

The Horned Serpent "appears in the mythologies of many Native Americans. Details vary among tribes, with many of the stories associating the mystical figure with water, rain, lightning and/or thunder. Horned Serpents were major components of the Southeastern Ceremonial Complex of North American prehistory."

Based on these descriptions, it doesn't seem like Rowling has learned her lesson about cultural appropriation, but we'll just have to wait and see.

We don't know much else about Ilvermorny or its houses, but we do know that many of the characters British wizard Newt Scamander encounters in "Fantastic Beasts And Where to Find Them" will have matriculated from the wizarding school.

"Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" hits theaters Nov. 18, 2016.


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