Probably the most popular house at Hogwarts, Gryffindor has a lot going for it. It’s where most of the main characters of the Harry Potter series are or were sorted into. So that’s where the action is and we love ourselves the drama that follows them. Just what does it take to get into Gryffindor though, and how does it differ from the other three houses? Read on to find out if you have these Gryffindor traits.
These first four traits are the epitome of Gryffindor, and not just because they’re the ones the Sorting Hat calls out. From Harry to Hermione to Remus to McGonagall any member we meet from Gryffindor has bravery oozing out of every pore.
Hand in hand with bravery, Gryffindors possess the nerve to get things done even in the face of the impossible. Nerve is what gets Harry and Co. through most of their adventures because lets face it, how else do a bunch of teens get themselves in and out of dangerous situations in the fantasy genre.
Courage is bravery, meaning that even when you’re scared out of your mind you’re doing the right thing. Like when Harry and Ron go to face the Basilisk and the Heir of Slytherin in Chamber of Secrets.
Gryffindors are bold and daring and we see a lot of this through out the series. Everyone save Luna that volunteers to go with Harry to the Department of Mysteries in Order of the Pheonix is a Gryffindor. In the same novel Hermione and Harry form Dumbledore’s Army to teach Defense Against the Dark Arts to Hogwarts students in defiance of Umbridge’s teachings.
Gryffindors abide by a moral code they set for themselves, one that can differ from character to character but to which they stick to faithfully. The Weasley twins follow one of mischief and fun, while Hermione follows one that ensures her academic success.
6. Inner Strength
Gryffindors are shown to have a lot of inner strength. Hermione erases her parents’ memories and moves them to another country to ensure their safety from Voldemort. Mrs. Weasley defeats Bellatrix, one of the deadliest enemies in the series, to defend her daughter. Neville, beaten and bloody, pulls out the Sword of Gryffindor, in a truly Arthurian move, at the pivotal moment and turns the tide in the Battle of Hogwarts.
While some Gryffindor traits are great to have, there are some that could pivot to the negative. Sirius Black’s willful nature was important in tearing himself away from the dark legacy of the Black family in his youth. However, that same willful nature is what ultimately leads to his demise in the Department of Mysteries.
Order of the Phoenix era Gryffindors show us their more hot-headed nature especially Harry. His quick temper has him constantly at odds with Dolores Umbridge to hid detriment and her sadistic glee.
Gryffindors value honesty, and are suspicious of those who do not reciprocate. Part of Harry’s frustration in the fifth book comes from the lack of honesty from the adults in the Order of the Phoenix even though he is the one who will be most directly affected.
Gryffindors have the tendency to be blunt, which can cause them problems even amongst fellow Gryffindors. One instance is when Oliver Wood tells McGonagall that he didn’t mind if Harry fell off of his broom as long as he caught the snitch first during their quidditch match. McGonagall was understandably upset. It happens a lot between them.
Gryffindors love a good joke. The Weasley twins take it upon themselves to show just how playful Gryffindors can be with their pranks. Gryffindors are also no strangers to snowball fights, often roping in members of other houses if they need to even out the teams.
The Weasley twins once again show off Gryffindor house’s love for a good time. Though they might have learned a thing or two off of the Marauders and their eponymous map.
Being used to being the most celebrated house, Gryffindors can be predictably stubborn. They all want things to go their way and are put out when it doesn’t happen.
Gryffindors are trusting of the people they meet until they are given reason not to. Harry doesn’t solidify his distrust of Draco Malfoy until hearing him insult Ron. Likewise while Dumbledore initially wasn’t sure about trusting Snape, it was the latter’s love for Lily Potter that swayed him and that trust remained for the rest of the series.
Gryffindors have a strong sense of right and wrong, one that very seldomly allows for a grey area. There are good guys and there are bad guys, good and evil. The downside to this is that they hold everyone to the same expectations and when they aren’t met are liable to lash out.
However, the good side to this strong moral compass is that Gryffindors stick up for those who can’t. They’ll put themselves on the line to help others without a second thought.
Going back to the lack of grey area, Gryffindors can find themselves disillusioned with people who don’t also adhere to a strict moral binary. This can cause a lot of friction with people from other houses that are more prone to nuance. Gryffindor’s holier-than-thou attitude can be annoying.
That being said, Gryffindors carry themselves through the world with a loud and present confidence. This isn’t always the case. For example Neville is a quieter, more nervous Gryffindor but even in the first novel he has bursts of confidence that help him become a leader by the end of the series.
Gryffindors again love their pranks, and like to see how far the can bend the rules before they break. This is most notable in the closing incantation of the Marauder’s Map, “Mischief Managed”.
Too much confidence can lead to arrogance in a Gryffindor, as Sirius and Remus both admit to Harry after seeing his father in a memory. James Potter’s arrogance put him at odds with Snape during their school days and it wasn’t until he curbed it that Lily Evans finally gave him the time of day.
Gryffindors are always up for an adventure! You can see that in some of their career choices: Bill Weasley becomes a Curse Breaker in Egypt, Charlie Weasley a dragon tamer, Oliver Wood a professional Quidditch player, and so on.
Gryffindors hate to lose, and this is most exemplified in the Quidditch tournament held at Hogwarts every year. They treat each game like a life or death situation (granted the sport is rather violent) but to the nth degree. Ron makes himself sick with nerves before a game, and any loss is treated like the end of the world.
Gryffindors are a tenacious bunch, determined to reach their goals whether it’s winning the House Cup, the Quidditch Cup, or some other thing. What they want they pursue with a determination that would exhaust anyone else.
Like Hufflepuffs, Gryffindors are extremely loyal to their people. This is why Hermione and Ron join Harry in the hunt for the Horcruxes despite his objections.
While some Gryffindors like Hermione stay on top of their work, others like Ron and Harry tend to leave things to the side until they have no other choice.
Gryffindors are more ‘do now think later’ types, and this can get them into trouble. Most notably when Harry and Co run off to the Department of Mysteries because they didn’t stop to think that Snape understood their coded message for the Order but couldn’t overtly reveal it. You know, because it’s a secret organization that people like Umbridge can’t know about.
What traits do you believe a Gryffindor possesses? Let me know in the comments below!
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I'm a writer based in California. I received my Bachelor's and Master's in Literature from San Francisco State University. I dream of one day writing books of my own and maybe even being part of a writer's room for a show! I love to talk about pop culture, books, and travel to anyone willing to listen. Some of my favorite topics in those categories are "Avatar the Last Airbender", "Gilmore Girls", the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, Mexico, and Paris. My favorite thing in the world though is my dog, he's just the cutest!