Why is Hufflepuff’s mascot a badger?

After the massive announcement of the Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts exclusive event on HBO Max, fans around the globe could not be more excited for the reunion. With the majority of the cast set to return, the upcoming Wizarding World gathering is sure to be magical. Check out the star-studded teaser trailer below.

It’s hard to imagine that the first Harry Potter book was published over 25 years ago. Taking the world by storm, the “Potterverse” became a cultural phenomenon and continues to delight new generations of readers and film fans to this day. Here’s a quick article detailing why the assorted tales of witches and wizards remain so popular.

On Nov. 14, 2001, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone hit the big screen. With impeccable casting, fantastic set pieces, and a magnificent score by maestro John Williams, the films to follow could do no wrong. Yet, throughout all the subsequent twists and turns, there were certain aspects of the Wizarding World that never became clear. 

One in particular is especially confusing: the Hufflepuff badger. It’s no mystery at this point that students at Hogwarts are separated into four distinct houses: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Hufflepuff, each one possessing a corresponding mascot that reflects the inherent qualities of its members. Gryffindor has the lion, chivalrous and brave; Slytherin has the snake, ambitious and cunning; Ravenclaw has the raven, intelligent and wise.

And then there’s Hufflepuff.

Arguably the most overlooked Hogwarts house, Hufflepuff’s mascot is the badger. Hufflepuffs value hard work, patience, and justice, which sound great, but….what does that have to do with badgers?

As it turns out, badgers not only exhibit bravery and loyalty, but they’re also steadfast workers. They construct massive burrows with multiple entrances and rooms, all the while quietly working away for the sake of the work itself. 

It’s their humble lifestyle that causes badgers to be so overlooked, yet when pressed with their backs against the wall, badgers will attack if necessary, exerting their great power and skill with ease. All these attributes create a very formidable witch or wizard, and hopefully fans will think twice before counting out the easygoing Hufflepuffs.

J.K. Rowling has gone so far as to say that, “In many, many ways, Hufflepuff is my favorite house.” That comes down to the reality that although Hufflepuffs praise justice and courage, they don’t necessarily showboat about it like a Gryffindor might. In essence, a Hufflepuff does the right thing for the sake of doing what’s right, not to prove a point. Take a look at this article detailing why everyone should fall in love with Hufflepuff house.

If, at this point, you’re wondering which Hogwarts house you would be sorted into if you acquired unbelievable magical powers, take this short Buzzfeed quiz to find out once and for all. One writer in particular (who shall remain nameless) is an out-and-proud Hufflepuff. What better way to stir things up this holiday season than with heated debates between friends and family over which Hogwarts house is best?

Happy sorting, and go Hufflepuff!