6
Lv 5
6 asked in Arts & HumanitiesBooks & Authors · 1 decade ago

Why did JK Rowling choose to name the spells what she did?

For example, Avada Kedavra. Is that a word from a different language? Is it just a combination of avocado and abra kadabra or is it something she just completely made up? Where does Wingardium leviosa come from?

Update:

Gosh, i hate spammers... reported

20 Answers

Relevance
  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    During an audience interview at the Edinburgh Book Festival (15 April 2004) Rowling said: "Does anyone know where avada kedavra came from? It is an ancient spell in Aramaic, and it is the original of abracadabra, which means 'let the thing be destroyed.' Originally, it was used to cure illness and the 'thing' was the illness, but I decided to make it the 'thing' as in the person standing in front of me. I take a lot of liberties with things like that. I twist them round and make them mine

    For the rest of the spells refer to the second link. It appears that ost of tehe spells are just morphed from daily use (like 'levicorpus' and 'crucio')

  • Most of them are latin based with some changes.

    Avada Kedavra:

    Suggested etymology: During an audience interview at the Edinburgh Book Festival (15 April 2004) Rowling said: "Does anyone know where avada kedavra came from? It is an ancient spell in Aramaic, and it is the original of abracadabra, which means 'let the thing be destroyed.' Originally, it was used to cure illness and the 'thing' was the illness, but I decided to make it the 'thing' as in the person standing in front of me. I take a lot of liberties with things like that. I twist them round and make them mine."

  • 1 decade ago

    I'm guessing it's a mixture of latin-based words, what she thinks spells would sound like, and words that relate to the spell. Some don't make a lot of sense (such as Episkey to fix minor injuries or Alohamora to open locked doors) though.

    Avada Kedavra means "let the thing be destroyed" in Aramaic.

  • TAI <3
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    Well Avada Kedavra sounds like Abra Kadabra. So I think she just makes it up or makes it sound like what the spell is doing.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 4 years ago

    Tom Riddle didn't have a twin, so obviously that has nothing to do with Rowling's choice of name. These have nothing to do with why Rowling might or might not have chosen the names. These are merely name meanings. Do you think that every author picks names to suit their characters perfectly?

  • 1 decade ago

    she usually uses latin and french. shes very clever because the names of her characters tend to match their personality. for students she chooses irish names for irish students, indian names for indian students etc.

    Avada Kedavra - Aramaic for "let the thing be destroyed", it's said to be the original saying of Abra Kadabra

    Wingardium Leviosa - "Wing" (ligament of propulsion) is the root of 'wingardium'. The root for 'Leviosa' is "levitate", which means to float. Latin

  • 1 decade ago

    Avada Kedavra means, in Old Hebrew, "Let this thing be destroyed". "Allohomora" is a combination of the words "Aloha", which, in Hawaiian, means "Goodbye" and "mora", which means, in the same language, "closed door". "Taratellengra" is from the name of the dance, tarantella. The ones with "sempra" (rictu- and sectu-) are some kind of Latin (sempra, sempre means forever), some are clearly from Latin like Protego/Protego Totalum, Petrificus Totalus, Colloportus( the last one is from "porta"=door/gate and collo i guess it's something like collision. Reparo is pretty much obvious, so is Imperio, which means in Latin "to rule", "Avis" means in latin "bird" , Aguamenti is from "agua"=water and I don't know what, Accio means "here" i guess. "Serpensotia" is clearly from the root "serpent". As for Wingardium Leviosa and Levicorpus, they both have the particle "levi", which probably comes from "levitation". "Homenum revelio" is a combination of "human" and "to reveal", "Repello Muggletum" is a combination of "muggle" and "to repel", "Muffliato" comes from "to camouflage", "expecto Patronum" comes from "to expect" and "patronum" which, in Latin, means "defender, protector". "Ridikulus" is from the English word "ridicule", "obliviate" is from "oblivion", "Cave inimicum" is from "Cave"-i guess and something like "inimicum" which means "enemy" in a Latin like language,but I don't know which one (I just know that "inamic" in Romanian means "enemy", but I doubt this was the source), Stupefy is obvious, "Nox" means night in a Latin language, "Piertotum Locomotor" comes from "Locomotion", "totum"="all" and "pier"="stone"

    This are the spells I can remember right now. Sorry for any spelling/grammar mistakes I made. Hope that was helpful!

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    She licks raccoons bottoms and they tell here a spell. no i think some have latin roots. like leviosa has 'levitate' i bet a fire spell has 'pyro' in it or water 'aqua' Excrousio uses 'excrutioiate' like excruiciating pain. other times she changes the words like Avada Cadava like abra cadabra. im not a big Harry Potter fan i Just Saw a couple movies

  • 1 decade ago

    In the books and their associated film series, the names of the majority of these spells or the incantations used to effect them are derived from the Classical languages, particularly Latin.[1] These names are not grammatically correct in any language; most spoken phrases resemble Latin words of appropriate meaning but are not proper Latin themselves.

  • 1 decade ago

    Almost all of the spells come from latin. Leviosa is like levitate, to float, which probably comes from the latin language at one pointt.

    Source(s): latin student for 4 years:)
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.