You won't believe these hilarious misconceptions Americans have about Harry Potter

Written by Jeppe W

Oct.25 - 2023 11:51 AM CET


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Regarded as one of Britain’s most esteemed exports, Harry Potter has captured hearts across generations in its homeland, and it enjoys a global fanbase as well.

Even those who haven’t delved into the extensive film series or read the books are aware that the Wizarding World is brimming with magical elements.

From magical wands and wizardry to flying on broomsticks, Harry Potter is undeniably filled with enchantment.

However, a number of Americans have found themselves slightly bewildered, mistakenly identifying certain aspects of Harry Potter as magical, when they are actually quintessentially British.

This amusing mix-up was highlighted in a discussion on the Harry Potter Reddit forum, where a user posed the question: "Non-British readers, what's something from the books you thought was magical but turned out to be just British?"

The responses were as entertaining as they were enlightening, providing a peek into the cultural confusions between the magical and the mundane. Let’s take a closer look at some of the highlights from this discussion.

Treacle Tart Absolutely, one individual from America has openly confessed to mistaking the well-loved British dessert, treacle tart, for a magical delicacy. The treacle tart is not only popular in the Wizarding World but also happens to be a favored treat of Harry Potter himself.

Although it offers a taste that might be described as enchanting, it's important to note that treacle tart is actually not a product of magic. Imagine the possibilities if it were, though!

One particularly amusing comment regarding treacle tarts read: "I didn't know what they were, so I pictured some sort of cake shaped like a squid or octopus."

School Houses and Prefects Anyone with experience in British education will be familiar with the concepts of school houses and prefects.

These are not just fixtures of Hogwarts but are also prevalent in schools across the UK.

Do you recall the times you were reprimanded by a prefect for using your phone during lunch? Yes, those irritating figures of authority.

It turns out, an American once believed this system was unique to the world of Harry Potter. If only that were true. Nonetheless, the competitive sports events between the houses added a fun element to the experience.

Christmas Crackers Pulling a Christmas cracker is a festive tradition enjoyed by many, right? However, it’s undeniable that the quality of the gifts found inside these holiday staples has diminished over the years.

This makes it all the more perplexing why an American would think Christmas crackers are a magical invention from Harry Potter.

Diverting from the main point, one Reddit user shared: "I was so confused when two characters pulled apart the crackers, and there were items inside. I just thought, 'what a wonderfully quirky magical world, complete with novelty-filled giant cheez-its!'"

Trains with Food Trolleys Remember the iconic moment in "Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone" when Harry buys the entire stock from the train’s food trolley? Well, a Reddit user from America once thought that was a magical occurrence.

It's quite a stretch to imagine the refreshment trolley on the 7:16 am train from Manchester to London as something magical.

At the end of the day, it’s just food, but there it is.

Pumpkin Juice And then there's pumpkin juice, the well-known drink from the wizarding world of Harry Potter.

One American on Reddit mentioned they used to think pumpkin juice was a typical British beverage, not realizing it was actually a magical creation.

This revelation led another user to respond in surprise: "Wait, pumpkin juice doesn’t exist?"

So there you have it, folks. These are just a few examples of things that some Americans mistakenly thought were magical in Harry Potter but are actually just part of British culture.

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