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Thread: Animagus and Patronus Animal Limitations?

  1. #1
    Seventh Year Ravenclaw
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    Animagus and Patronus Animal Limitations?

    I have some random questions.

    Are there any limits on what kind of creature your Animagus or Patronus assumes? Do either have to be mundane animals like owls and deers and dogs, or could magical animals be used as well? Could a wizard conceivably have a dragon Patronus, or could someone's Animagus form be a Hippogryff or something?

    What about extinct creatures? Could some dinosaur-obsessed paleontologist who happened to be a wizard have a Tyrannosaurus Rex as a Patronus? What about dinosaurs as Animagus forms?

    Lastly, do you think there are any limitations on the size of a Patronus? Could someone have a blue whale as a Patronus, or is that too big?

    Tim the Enchanter

  2. #2
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    I'm not sure if it was ever mentioned if a person's Animagus form could be a magical creature. I can, howeverm think of a very logical reason why. I think most wizards would want to become an Animagus so they could go undetected. I'm not sure how useful and unicorn Animagus would be on this front.

    I do remember reading something about the largest Patronus Charm summon in history was either a yark or a bision (described as a large creature with horns, so I could be guessing). But I can't, however, remember where I read this. I'm not sure there really is a limit to how large an Animagus can be, I just this in terms of practically, and the form actually fitting into a room.

    Also, if you plan on writing a story that takes place before the HP serious, I wouldn't use a creature larger than a bison or a rhino.

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  3. #3
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    JKR revealed in an interview that Dumbledore's Patronus was a Pheonix, so that at least can be a magical creature.

    Whether that translates to Animagus forms I'm not sure.

    I don't see why a Patronus couldn't be really large, though it seems strange that someone would find a blue whale protective. I always thought JKR said the patronus was something that would make the caster feel safe, but it is apparently more what makes the caster feel good ie, Hermione has an otter. Okay, maybe it makes her feel safe? It seems more like they are things we like. *shrug* So I think you have a lot of leeway. Of course, like OliveOil_Med said, something that large might be rather awkward and inconvenient, *imagines hallway completely filled with whale mist* That might work for comic relief.

    Dinosaur...hmm...Personally, I find that a bit of a stretch, though I don't really have any evidence to support my skepticism. I think I'd be more likely to believe the Patronus, but Animagus... I suppose if you have shown the character's fascination with them, it could work.

    I agree with OliveOil_Med that most people would want something that would not stand out that much, though we know that people don't get to pick. I'm sure Wormtail didn't want to be a rat, even if it did come in handy later on. And a stag does rather stand out. It isn't like James could transform and prowl about the streets of London unnoticed. Granted it would be more easily overlooked/explained than a dragon or unicorn, but still. Personally, I don't see why it couldn't be a dinosaur, assuming the dinosaur actually shared the person's characteristics. Hmm...come to think of it, I might end up being a dinosaur if I became an animagus. *Okay, isn't quite that old*

    Again, there isn't a lot of definitive information on them that I have found, so I feel we are pretty free to do as we want, though if you do something radical, prepare to defend your actions to readers in reviews.

    And that was a rambling lot of indecisive non-help. Sorry. I really just wanted to point out the Dumbledore/Pheonix point.

  4. #4
    Inverarity
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    It's never stated in the books. I'd be skeptical of any wizard identifying with dinosaurs as a protective image, or as a representation of oneself.

    Though if you've ever read the Wild Cards series, which is a shared-universe set of novels about people who gain superpowers, which are later discovered to be influenced by their own psyche at a deep level, there is one character called "Dinosaur Boy" who gains the power to turn into dinosaurs because he was an abused child who took refuge in books about dinosaurs at a young age. For him, dinosaurs really were a comforting, protective image, so I could see him having a dinosaur Patronus if he were a wizard.

    Wizards who grew up around elephants, rhinos, or whales, and consider them to be just like any other animal, could have them as Patronuses or animagi forms, I'd think.

    In general, though, I think things like dinosaur Patronuses and dragon animagi forms are the realm of Mary Sue-fic.

  5. #5
    Racing Co
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    I really don't think there'd be much limitation, so long as the Patronus or Animagus makes logical sense in relation to the person who conjures it (like in the paleontologist example). I'd imagine it would be much more complicated and advanced magic to become a magical creature, even if it is possible. I think dragons especially would almost be too unbelievable though.

    When it comes to an Animagus, does he or she know what will turn into when performing the charm? Is there a choice, or is it just plain, a transfiguration? It'd stink to be like Rita a "pick" one day to be a beetle and be bound to that for the rest of your life.

  6. #6
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    You can't pick you Animagus form, or your Patronus form. Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs did not choose the Animagi they became.
    Here's a quote from JK Rowling:

    Quote Originally Posted by Interview in 2005
    Robert Dawson for Asda - If you were an animagus, what would you like to be?

    JK Rowling: This always amuses me this idea. You see, you do not know what you are going to be until you have done it, so you might spend half a decade trying to turn into an animal and then find out you were a slug or something, which would be most unpleasant.
    The Patronus is unique to each wizard. An Animagus may not be unique (although there aren't very many so it wouldn't be hard to be unique)

    I don't see why your Patronus shouldn't be a Blue Whale. It never says anywhere that they're lifesize, does it?

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