Harry Potter: 10 Moments Where Hermione Broke The Rules That Aren’t Talked About Enough
Hermione was constantly breaking rules in Harry Potter – including some moments that are severely underrated.
Hermione is known for being both a stickler for the rules, and someone who seems to be constantly breaking them. She has an encyclopedic knowledge of Hogwarts Rules and Wizarding Law, and yet, she sneaks around the castle, refuses to tell on Harry’s various rule-breaking exploits, and has some fairly famous rebellious moments.
When she whipped out her wand to threaten Draco, fans cheered for her. When she broke every rule possible to help Harry around Hogwarts, to start the DA under Umbridge’s nose, to brew Polyjuice Potion illegally, and to break into the Ministry of Magic and Gringotts, fans absolutely loved it. But in amongst all those big rule-breaker moments, sometimes, her best ones go unmentioned.
10 Helping To Save Norbert
When Hagrid manages to get his hands on a real dragon egg, it’s illegal on every level (and impractical, given that he presumably intends to keep it on the Hogwarts grounds!). Despite this, Hermione not only keeps Hagrid’s secret, but actively helps him spirit the dragon away. In the books, Hermione (along with her friends) contrive a plan to get the dragon to Charlie Weasley (who works with dragons) and sneaks him out of the castle. Largely underrated because the full scheme doesn’t make it into the films, even in the movies, her decision to keep Hagrid’s secret because she cares for him is incredible.
9 Setting Snape On Fire
When Hermione believes that Snape is cursing Harry’s broomstick in a Quidditch match, she needs to get him to break eye contact (not knowing until later that he was counter-cursing the whole time). To do this, she sneaks up under the stands and sets him on fire using a spell.
While this is a moment that fans do love, it deserves much more attention because it was an active choice Hermione made – despite the fact that she could have simply walked up to him and said his name to get him to look at her.
8 Cursing Neville
In all the rule-breaking that Hermione does in the first movie, it’s often ignored that this includes cursing another student with a full-body bind: Neville, when he tries to stop them sneaking out again. This is underrated for a couple of reasons. First, it’s not clear that this is actually against the rules, as it seems that students perform light hexes on each other as pranks quite often, and second, because Neville becomes a fan favorite, and no one was cheering for him to be cursed. Still, her ability to be so utterly ruthless in order to try and save the day is pure Gryffindor behavior, and this deserves more attention as proof that Hermione most definitely belonged in her house from the start.
7 Imprisoning Rita Skeeter…
Rita Skeeter is an odious gossip journalist, and fans disliked her from the start – but no one as much as Hermione, who was furious at Skeeter’s insinuations that she and Harry were a couple, and that she wanted to gain fame through him. In the books, Hermione eventually discovers that Skeeter is an unregistered animagus – a beetle – and captures her in beetle form and holds her captive in a jar. While Rita Skeeter does appear in the films, she gets only a fraction of the story that she does in the books, which is why this is less discussed than many of Hermione’s other rule-breaking moments. In the films, her kidnap of Skeeter didn’t happen, but it definitely should have, because it’s one of Hermione’s finest moments.
6 …Then Blackmailing Rita Skeeter
Eventually, Hermione does let Rita out, as long as she stops writing horrible things about people. After a while, though, Hermione calls her in and blackmails her a second time with her secret – getting her to write Harry’s side of the story when the Daily Prophet is painting him as a deluded, fame-hungry teenager. This is entirely left out of the films, which again explains why it isn’t a bigger deal for fans, but again, is the films’ loss. Hermione’s moves here are brilliant as well as ruthless.
5 Putting A Jinx On The DA Signup Sheet
Hermione’s rule-breaking in the creation of the DA is often celebrated, but less so her jinxing of the sign-up sheet, so that any student who told on the group would end up with the word ‘sneak’ written across their face in blisters.
Once again, this was left out of the films, which is why it’s not talked about as much as some of the other times she breaks the rules, but it should have been included. Her willingness to do anything to protect her friends is actually a little bit scary, and this proves it.
4 Poisoned Crabbe & Goyle
Most of the focus around the scene where Hermione brews a Polyjuice Potion to disguise herself, Harry, and Ron as Slytherin students and sneak into the common room is on the fact that she a) brewed an illegal potion and b) was going to sneak into the Slytherin common room. What is less discussed in this moment is that she also poisoned Crabbe and Goyle with sweet treats laced with a potion to make them pass out. Admittedly, she didn’t put the treats out (as she was half-cat, at the time), but it’s clear she dosed them, as Harry and Ron wouldn’t have had the know how.
3 Used Confundus To Affect Quidditch
When Ron and Cormac were both trying out as Gryffindor Keeper, Hermione actually used a confundus charm on Cormac to make him miss a save, and lose the tryout. While she wasn’t as devoted a Quidditch fan as Ron (or even Harry), she would still not have been comfortable with breaking the rules of good sportsmanship – and even told Harry off for putting Felix Felices in Ron’s drink before a game (although he didn’t).
2 Let Ron & Harry Copy Her Work Constantly
Throughout their time at Hogwarts, Hermione allows Ron and Harry to copy her work, and even occasionally does some of their work for them, despite the fact that this is clearly cheating. Nevertheless, she repeatedly does it, even though there’s no suggestion that either would end up expelled if their grades dropped (or anything as dire as that). Perhaps it goes unmentioned, for the most part, because helping friends out in this way just doesn’t stand out in comparison to riding a dragon away from a bank heist, but this is also the only rule that Hermione really breaks that isn’t for a higher purpose, but just to help her friends. It deserves more attention because it proves that she actually just breaks the rules for her own interest, or for her friends.
1 Lied To Teachers (& Stormed Out Of Class)
Similarly, throughout the books, Hermione spends a lot of time lying to her teachers. She steals from Snape’s stores to make her illegal potions, she constantly lies to Slughorn to get out of his ‘Slug Club’ parties, she lied to Umbridge constantly, she even stormed out of Divination and never came back. Given how casually and consistently she broke the rules surrounding her teachers, it’s astounding that she was ever considered a rule-follower in the first place!