At is to assign the first year students

At
the beginning of each school year, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
performs an annual ritual, the Sorting Ceremony. Its purpose is to assign the
first year students to one of the four houses: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw,
Hufflepuff, and Slytherin, depending on the characteristics and values they
possess.

            Students who value the virtues of
bravery, nerve, daring, and chivalry are classified as members of the
Gryffindor house, founded by Godric Gryffindor who is described as one of the
most brilliant wizards of his time. With a lion as its crest, and scarlet and
gold as its colors, Gryffindor corresponds to the element of Fire. Its common
room and dormitories are located at the Gryffindor Tower, seventh floor, in the
east wing of the castle. The common room is guarded by a portrait of the Fat
Lady who is clothed in a pink silk dress. She permits entry after being given
the correct password, which is constantly changing. A picture of Godric
Gryffindor hanging above a cozy fireplace is arranged in the center of the room.
The room contains stuffed armchairs and its walls are decorated with pictures
of mythical creatures and notable Gryffindor members. The staircases leading to
the girls’ and boys’ dormitories are positioned beside the fireplace.
Transfiguration Professor Minerva McGonagall is the Head of Gryffindor, while
Sir Nicholas de Mimsy-Porpington, also known as “Nearly Headless Nick” is its
house ghost.

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            As Gryffindor values courage the
most, Ravenclaw students prize wit, learning, and wisdom. The Ravenclaw house
is founded by Rowena Ravenclaw, a Scottish witch, illustrated as “beautiful yet
slightly intimidating.” The house’s crest is an eagle, and its colors are blue
and bronze, corresponding to the element of Air. The Ravenclaw Tower is located
at the west side of the castle. A door with a bronze-eagle shaped knocker gives
a riddle to be answered by the students. The riddle serves as the common room’s
password. The Ravenclaw common room is circular, its windows are arched, and
its domed ceiling is painted with stars, sparkling like those in a night sky.
The room contains a white marble statue of Rowena Ravenclaw, behind it is a
door leading to the dormitories. Rowena’s daughter, Helena who is also known as
the Grey Lady, is Ravenclaw’s house ghost, and Charms Professor Filius Flitwick
is its Head.

            Hufflepuff may be the most silent
among the four houses, yet it should not be underestimated. Students who are
sorted into Hufflepuff value hard work, patience, loyalty, trust, and fair
play. The house is founded by Helga Hufflepuff, a Welsh witch. The element of Earth
corresponds to this house. A badger is its crest, and yellow and black are its
colors. The house’s common room and dormitories are located at the Hufflepuff
Basement, near the castle’s kitchens. The lid directing to the common room
opens when the correct barrel, in a stack of barrels, is tapped in the rhythm
of “Helga Hufflepuff.” With its circular windows and low ceilings, the room
always seems bright and sunny. Plants hanging from the ceiling or sitting on
windowsills, overstuffed yellow and black chairs and sofas, and copper
furnishings are what to be seen inside the Hufflepuff common room. A round
door, lit by copper lamps, leads to the dormitories. The Fat Friar is
Hufflepuff’s house ghost, and the Head of the House is Pomona Sprout, a
professor in Herbology.

            Producing the most number of dark
wizards, the Slytherin house also turns out leaders who are proud, cunning, and
ambitious. The house is founded by Salazar Slytherin, a pure-blooded wizard.
The element of Water corresponds to this house. Its crest is a serpent, and its
colors are emerald green and silver. The common room and dormitories are found
at the Slytherin Dungeon. It is reached through a concealed stone wall, wherein
a correct password which changes every fortnight is needed to open the wall.
The common room is described as being mysterious, looking like an underwater
shipwreck, but still quite cozy. Giant squids and other interesting aquatic
creatures often pass by the room’s windows. Hanging from the walls of the
dormitories are medieval tapestries depicting adventures of famous Slytherin
members. Potions Professor Severus Snape is the Head of Slytherin, while its
house ghost is the Bloody Baron.

In
which Hogwarts House do you think your characteristics and values belong? Not
so sure? Well, one thing is for sure. Entering Hogwarts is indeed a magical and
enchanting experience.