Even if you know very little about the Harry Potter series, you probably know Hermione Granger’s name. She is one of the main characters and is known for being a talented witch.
However, she was also born to Muggle parents. If magic is hereditary and her parents are muggles, then how is Hermione a witch?
Hermione is muggle-born, which is a witch or wizard who is born to non-magical parents. She would have had a squib in her family at some point. A squib is a non-magical child born to magical parents. They can’t practice magic, but they pass the genes down to their ancestors. It wasn’t common, but it was possible.
Keep reading to learn more about Hermione Granger, muggles, muggle-borns, and more!
What is the difference between a witch and a wizard?
Wizards and witches both have magical abilities. The main difference between a witch and a wizard is gender. Wizards are males with supernatural powers, and witches are females with magical powers.
How can two muggles have a child who is a witch or wizard?
Two muggle (non-magical) parents can have a child with magical abilities through a squib in their family. A squib is a non-magical child born into a wizarding family. Squibs are aware of the wizarding world and can see magic. However, they can’t use magic since they don’t have any powers.
But while squibs don’t have magical abilities, they can still carry the magic gene and pass it down through their family line. Like most other genetic traits, they may not be inherited by everyone in the family, but the gene is there and can pop up at any time.
It was a rare occurrence in the wizarding world. Nonetheless, it still happened occasionally.
How did Hermione become a witch?
Hermione was born to two dentists, only known as Mr. and Mrs. Granger, in 1979. Having no previous knowledge of any magic in her family, she only found out about her magical abilities when she was 11 years old and received her invitation letter to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
However, she must have shown magical ability at some point, even if she didn’t realize it, because her name was written in the Book of Admittance.
Since Hermione was not aware of her magical abilities and the wizarding world until she was 11, she was considered a late bloomer as a witch. Because of this, Hermione was determined to learn all she could about magic and the wizarding world since she was not educated early on.
She was more interested in learning and having wisdom in her abilities than having fun with them. She quickly caught on to new spells and was also good at non-verbal and wandless magic, which was uncommon for someone so young and not born to wizard parents.
When she got to Hogwarts, the Sorting Hat placed Hermione in the House of Gryffindor. She held great appreciation, gratitude, and respect for her magical abilities. She treated them like a gift and shared it with others.
Several students and teachers at Hogwarts recognized Hermione’s talent, including Albus Dumbledore. Hagrid noted that there wasn’t a spell that she couldn’t cast. Harry realized that she was the best student in their year. Remus Lupin said that Hermione was the cleverest witch her age.
How is Hermione a mudblood?
Mudblood is actually a negative slang term used for witches and wizards that had muggle parents or were not pure-blood wizards or witches. The magic of non-pureblood wizards and witches was considered weak and unworthy, especially by pure-bloods.
One such wizard who had zero tolerance for mudbloods was the Dark Lord himself, Lord Voldemort. Voldemort believed that pure magic was supreme, and the magic of half-bloods and pure-bloods was far less worthy. Voldemort wanted to eliminate all mudbloods completely.
Hermione was called a mudblood because her parents were muggles; therefore, her magic was not considered pure. One pureblood who mainly gave Hermione a hard time was Draco Malfoy. Despite Hermione’s obvious talent as a witch, Draco often called her a mudblood every chance that he got.
Still, Hermione held her own against Draco and even punched him in the face and announced that she was proud to be a mudblood.
As mentioned above, Hermione was still a very talented witch even though she had muggle parents. She was not alone as far as clever muggle-born witches go.
Another gifted witch born to muggles includes Lily Evans, Harry’s mother. Once she left Hogwarts, Hermione went on to work for the Ministry of Magic and fought for mudbloods and half-bloods to have the same rights and be treated the same as pureblood wizards and witches.
Did Hermione’s parents know that she was a witch?
Hermione’s parents did know that she was a witch. It is not mentioned if the Grangers knew of magic existing previously in their family or if they noticed anything different about Hermione when she was younger, such as if she possessed any abilities that they found odd.
But, if they didn’t know anything before, they definitely found out when she got her Hogwarts letter. Since they were muggles, it is also likely that someone from Hogwarts came to them shortly after Hermione received her letter and explained the wizarding world to them, even giving them a demonstration.
One explanation for why the Grangers may not have known about magic in their bloodline would be how most squibs were treated in the wizarding world. Most wizard families with squibs treated them like traitors since they lacked magical abilities. The Ministry of Magic did not even keep a record of squib births.
Most muggles are unaware of the magical world, but there were a few that did know about it. The Dursleys were aware but obviously against it. Hermione’s parents apparently handled the news well. Hermione told others that they were surprised when they learned she was a witch, but they were still very supportive.