The seven-book Harry Potter series begins with Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone though in the States it is Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. The introductory novel is targeted at elementary aged children though older kids and even adults have been known to appreciate the twists and turns as the larger story evolves.
Wizards and witches begin wizarding school around 11 or 12, as did Harry, though he had no knowledge of the wizarding world until Hagrid, the groundskeeper at the school, arrived to pick up the young boy from his deceased mother’s sister, Petunia, and her husband Vernon Dursley.The Dursley’s had attempted unsuccessfully to keep Harry from receiving his letter of acceptance to the school.
Although the couple protested against young Harry going to the school his parents attended, they relinquished control when Hagrid made it clear they did not want to invite the wrath of the entire wizarding community. He assisted Harry in understanding how vast the wizard and witch community is world-wide. Additionally, he taught him how to navigate Diagon Alley, which is where the bank and many stores operate.
After this, the main character of the story, Harry, and the other first-year students all arrive by boat or train. This is when the characters of Draco, Ron and Hermione are first introduced and it provides a pretty clear picture of how these relationships will develop throughout the course of the story. On the train, Mr. Neville Longbottom lost his pet frog.
The students are quickly escorted from the boat to the receiving area. Headmaster Dumbledore called for them, and the Sorting Hat assigned each into one of the four houses: Slytherin, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor. The headmaster speaks, and students are dismissed to their rooms for the remainder of the evening, concluding Harry’s arrival at Hogwarts.
You can read some of my favorite Harry Potter quotes on goodreads.com.
In my view, this arrival scene is one of the best parts of the entire series, since it is the first time you get to see the magical world of Hogwart’s and it’s presented in a playful and fun way. Compare that to the arrival in later books, like Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, where there are death eaters patrolling the grounds as soon as the students arrive, and you’ll quickly see why the arrival scene of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is a clear winner.
While the book version is obviously better, here’s a glimpse at the movie version of Harry’s arrival at Hogwarts!