Bill and Charlie, how old are they?

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Bill and Charlie, how old are they?

Post  Elanor on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:46 am

Bill and Charlie, how old are they?

This topic serves as an archive of a thread from the Harry Potter Lexicon Forum as hosted on World Crossing which ceased operation on April 15, 2011. At that time, this thread was still set in the "Archived Thread to be Worked" folder of the WC forum. Elanor

Julia. - Mar 4, 2004 3:02 pm
Edited by Kip Carter Jan 12, 2006 12:26 pm
In JKR's chat this morning she said "Bill is two years older than Charlie, who is two years older than Percy." However, astute Forumers have discoveded that this cannot be right. If Charlie were indeed two years older than Percy, he would have been in his seventh year at Hogwarts while Harry was in his first, and we know that he was in Romania at that time. We also know that there was at least one year between Charlie leaving and Harry starting at Hogwarts. We know this because Charlie won the Quidditch cup when he was in school, and in the year before Harry began Gryffindor was "Flattened in that last match by Slytherin." (PS/SS, Ch. 9, pg. 152 American) So, how old are Bill and Charlie?
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Post  Elanor on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:47 am

Kip Carter - Mar 4, 2004 3:41 pm (#1 of 159)
co-Host with Steve on the Lexicon Forum, but he has the final say as the Owner!
Julia, I am glad that you picked this "inaccuracy" out and made it a new thread. I feel that she was correct in the first part of her comment of "Bill is two years older than Charlie,"; however I feel she erred in adding the second part of that sentence. I feel that there is at least four years difference between Charlie and Percy.

The only possible explanation that could allow her statement to be correct is that Charlie did what the twins did and quit school two years early. Maybe he felt that his education at that time was all that he needed to do the job that he wanted to do.

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Mare - Mar 4, 2004 4:00 pm (#2 of 159)

Reposting the discussion from the JKR chatt thread.

Liz: Hang on a minute... the answer she gave to Bill and Charlie's ages makes things even more confusing! If Charlie's two years older than Percy, he would still have been at Hogwarts in book 1! In seventh year! And I thought the last time Gryffindor won the Quiddich cup was when Charlie was Seeker, which was seven years before book three!

Mollis: Unfortunately, it seem JKR may have made a mistake with the ages of Bill and Charlie. If Charlie had started a year early, he would have been seeker the year prior to Harry becoming seeker. However, when McGonnagal and Wood are telling Harry about Quidditch, she says "Heaven knows we need a better team than last year. Flattened in that last match by Slytherin..." (SS Ch.9) We know Charlie Weasley won the Quidditch Cup, so he can't have been on the team that was flattened by Slytherin.

This will make it even worse.

But, in CH. 10, Wood says to Harry "I wouldn't be surprised if you turn out better than Charlie Weasley, and he could have played for England if he hadn't gone off chasing dragons." So maybe Charlie did lose his last quidditch game? At least it seems Wood played on the team with him. He knows a lot about Charlie and how good he was.

Julia: ARGH!!!!! I was so excited to find out how old Bill and Charlie actually are, but then I realized that you guys, were of couse right, and that Charlie can't be only two years older than Percy, or he would have been at Hogwarts in Harry's first year. You are also right Mollis, thers has to have been at least one year in beween Charlie leaving Hogwars and Harry staring there, or they would not have been "Flattened in that last match by Slytherin." I've pretty much decided that Bill and Charile can't be too much older than Percy, so I think I'm going with about four years between Charlie and Percy, and, as JKR said, two years between Bill and Charlie

Loopy Lupin: Argh is right!!! I realize that JKR has a whole world to keep up with, but talk about "reading the bloody book." JUST KIDDING!! But really, was Charlie doing his last year as an exchange student (in Romania, studying dragons?) or something!!!..... I had always pictured Bill as younger than our timeline though (which has him at about 28 or so, or even possibly attending Hogwarts while Lily and James were there) and took the "5 years since I've been here" line in GOF to mean that he was about 22 or so. Also, since he's sort of dating Fleur in OoP, I think younger is better. 22-23 year old dating an 18 year old is ok, but 28-30 dating an 18 year old is a tad icky.

Czarina: Regarding Bill and Charlie's ages -- Rowling could be partially right in saying that there are two years between each of the Weasley brothers (which begs the question, why the one-year gap between Ron and Ginny?), but Charlie could be actually three years ahead in school.

Assuming that everything Rowling says is fact and working backwards: Ron was born in 1980 (fact), which means that Fred/George were born in 1978 (fact, because their birthdays are after Christmas but before summer); Percy is two years older, so he was born in either 1975 or 1976 as being born in October of 1975 still puts him two grades higher than the twins (Angelina is born in Oct 1977 for instance). This means that Charlie could very well be born in 1973 (roughly two years before Percy) and perhaps early enough to qualify for Hogwarts in 1984, while Percy wouldn't arrive until 1987. This makes him leave school in June 1991, the same year as Tonks. Just to finish off, Bill would have been born in 1971 or 1972 and gone to school two years before that. He would have attended Hogwarts 1982-1989, thus Ginny could very well "remember when Bill was at Hogwarts."

The "chasing dragons" inferred by Wood seems to indicate that Charlie was a Seeker for Gryffindor 1990-1991 (his last year), but decided to quit the team in favour of studying dragons. Maybe he was offered a special scholarship for dragon-keeper training that allowed him to leave Hogwarts a few months early -- after Christmas, perhaps. Wood, a dedicated fourth-year Quidditch player, would have seen his captain leaving as a sort of betrayal.

Marè (that's me..) posting this here first: Maybe it is an idea, to find all the quotes in the books that could help us with this, for example, Charlie won the quidditch cup, but are we 100% sure he won it in his last year?

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Julia. - Mar 4, 2004 4:04 pm (#3 of 159)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
Thanks Kip, but I can't take credit for picking up on inconsistancy. The credit for that goes to Liz, Mare, and Mollis Well spotted, you three. I just started the thread after some discussion in the chat room lead us no where.

I too have no reason to doubt that Bill is two years older than Charlie, but, according to the books, there is now way that Charlie can be only two years older than Percy. I've settled on Charlie being four years older, that way, there are two years from the time that Charlie leaves Hogwarts to the time Harry starts it, and it's not so far back that Ginny can't remember Bill being there (Bill being 6 years older than Percy, and 11 years older than Ginny)

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Dr Filibuster - Mar 4, 2004 4:08 pm (#4 of 159)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
How will Lexicon Steve make sense of this?

I actually "tut-tutted" JKR for this answer. I am sure that she has already got loads of grief over it. Let's hope she tweaks her reply...and finishes her answer to the Gryffindor girls question while she's at it too.

Siobhan (Forever Fawkes) had a good go at trying to fit an explanation to Rowling's revelation. Sorry can't do a link so I hope she posts on here tomorrow.

She suggested that Charlie began school a year early, as Hermione has done, or skipped a year. This would mean that he left Hogwarts the term before Ron began. It's still tricky trying to explain the Quidditch comment from PS/SS though, (Gryffindor not winning for 7 years, when Charlie was on the team, especially as he couldn't be in the team as a first year). He may have been one of the youngest in his classes and jumped a year, but I doubt it.

Other suggestions from TLC include...Charlie left early to pursue his dragon studies, perhaps a kind of student transfer?

Also, Bill's comment in GoF about being at Hogwarts for the first time in 5 years. This now fits perfectly, he is 4 years older than Percy, and Percy left school the year before.

Finally, Loopy mentioned the fact that it's less "icky" for 23 year old Bill, as opposed to 28+ year old Bill, to be going out with 18 year old Fleur.

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Mare - Mar 4, 2004 4:12 pm (#5 of 159)

Well but wizards live longer than muggles, so a ten year difference would be relatively smaller to them. (Am I making sense?)

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Dr Filibuster - Mar 4, 2004 4:19 pm (#6 of 159)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Yes Mare, it's actually what I use to argue a case for Lupin and Tonks getting together

Edit: my previous post repeated loads of comments because I took sooooo long Kip and Julie beat me to it. Sorry

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Mare - Mar 4, 2004 4:19 pm (#7 of 159)



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S.E. Jones - Mar 4, 2004 5:40 pm (#8 of 159)

Let it snow!
Edited Mar 5, 2004 2:24 pm
Julia Katz: If Charlie were indeed two years older than Percy, he would have been in his seventh year at Hogwarts while Harry was in his first, and we know that he was in Romania at that time. We also know that there was at least one year between Charlie leaving and Harry starting at Hogwarts. We know this because Charlie won the Quidditch cup when he was in school, and in the year before Harry began Gryffindor was "Flattened in that last match by Slytherin." (PS/SS, Ch. 9, pg. 152 American)...

Actually, Charlie most likely left just prior to Harry getting to Hogwarts if he is two years older than Harry, remember we're dealing with the difference of months here (June vs September). Also I think I know why we have that line about Gryffindor getting flattened (see below). So here/s how I see it:

1972 Bill born

1974 Charlie born: B (2)

1976 Percy born : C (2), B (4)

1978 April Fred/George born : P (2), C (4), B (6)

1980 March Ron born : F/G (2), P(4), C (6), B (Cool

1981 Ginny born : R (1), F/G (3), P (5), C (7), B (9)

1983 Sept Bill (11) to Hogwarts : G (2), R (3), F/G (5), P (7), C (9)

1985 Sept Charlie (11) to Hogwarts : G (4), R (5), F/G (7), P (9), B (13)

1987 Sept Percy (11) to Hogwarts : G (6), R (7), F/G (9), C (13), B (15)

1989 June Bill (17) leaves Hogwarts

1989 Sept Fred/George (11) to Hogwarts : G (Cool, R (9), P (13), C (15), B (17)

1991 June Charlie (17) leaves Hogwarts

1991 Sept Ron (11) to Hogwarts : G (10), F/G (13), P (15), C (17), B (19)

1992 Sept Ginny (11) to Hogwarts : R (12), F/G (14), P (16), C (18), B (20)

1994 June Percy (17) leaves Hogwarts

1996 June Fred/George leaves Hogwarts

1998 June Ron (17) leaves Hogwarts - ?

1999 June Ginny (17) leaves Hogwarts - ?

We also have some other canon references for the Weasley children ages: In SS, Fred states "I tell you, we're going to win that Quidditch cup for sure this year. We haven't won since Charlie left..." (PS, ch9, pg153, US). Now I had previously assumed that this meant that the team had been left with an inadequate seeker when Charlie graduated some years ago and so had lost the Quidditch Cup to Slytherin, but now I am of a different opinion. I think that the rest of that statement should go “since Charlie left the team”. I feel Charlie left the Quidditch team before his term at Hogwarts was over, which is what prompted Wood’s comment in PoA, “Gryffindor hasn't won for seven years now." (PoA, ch8, pg143, USpb). Of course this would mean that Charlie only played his second and possibly third years which doesn’t seem very to fit with the description of his as Quidditch captain and almost being recruited by professional teams. Perhaps the “seven years” is a ‘Flint’ and was meant to read as some shorter interval? Possibly, or JKR simply mistook how many years she meant to appear between Charlie and Percy, though I think the former is far more likely. There is also the comment by Bill in GoF, “Haven’t seen this place for five years,” (GoF, ch31, pg616, USpb) which, in my mind, points to him being present in Charlie’s last year for some reason (Is there a graduation ceremony of some kind at Hogwarts?).

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Czarina - Mar 4, 2004 5:44 pm (#9 of 159)

The comments that make Charlie seem older appear in PS, right? That was the book where Rowling hadn't worked out all the details of the story yet. And math might not be her strong suit for her to remember NOW that Charlie should have still been in school if he's only two years older. Ah well, I still like my theory.

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Loopy Lupin - Mar 4, 2004 6:14 pm (#10 of 159)

Not to throw another wrench in this discussion, but wasn't Charlie a prefect? (Percy and Bill were Head Boys, as well). So, this would mean that, as far as Charlie leaving early, he was at least there until 5th year.

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S.E. Jones - Mar 4, 2004 6:23 pm (#11 of 159)

Let it snow!
I thought Charlie was a prefect. Didn't Molly say something about "That makes everyone in the family now (or thus far or something)" and Fred and George made a comment about not being neighbors? If Charlie also wasn't a prefect, wouldn't they have mentioned it then? He was probably in school all seven years, just not on the Quidditch team, since he wanted to go off playing with dragons and all....

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Choices - Mar 4, 2004 7:53 pm (#12 of 159)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I always thought the comment about him being good enough to play for England meant after he left school. I think he played Quidditch through his 7th year and then instead of becoming a professional Quidditch player (he was that good), he took a job studying dragons. I never understood it to mean he left school early or didn't play Quidditch right up until the end of his schooling at Hogwarts.

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Nathaniel Shafer - Mar 5, 2004 1:02 am (#13 of 159)

I see no way that Charlie can be only two years older than Percy. It takes just too many doubtful suppositions to work.

I think Ms. Rowling's "fuzzy math" calls into question the ages of Snape and ergo makes the ages of James, Lily, Remus, etc. questionable. I adore her writing, but her math leaves a lot to be desired.

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Prefect Marcus - Mar 5, 2004 10:23 am (#14 of 159)

"Anyone can cook"
Okay, let's avoid assumptions.

First of all, what does "two years apart" mean? Does that mean that they were born exactly 730.5 days apart? Not likely. Does it mean they attended Hogwarts two years apart? We don't have enough information.

Two children could be born anywhere from 19 to 29 months apart and still be considered "two years" apart. Depending upon birthdays and cut-off dates, they could attend school anywhere from a year apart to three years apart.

Second, do we know that Charlie Weasley played Quidditch at all in his seventh year. Perhaps he just got tired of it, or he wanted to concentrate on his studies, or (as others have suggested) he was an exchange student, or the twins were not the first Weasleys to leave school early, or he was being disciplined and was ineligble to play.

Third, do we know that Gryffindor won the cup every year that Charlie played? Of the first three years that Harry played, they only won the cup once, and Harry is the best seeker in 100 years. Charlie might have been injured one of the games.

We can easily read too much into the statement that "Gryffindor has not won the cup since Charlie Weasley left." If Gryffindor never wins the cup again, in 10 years time people could easily say "We haven't won the cup since Harry Potter left", even though they lost the cup the two years running while Harry was still on the team.

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Liz Mann - Mar 5, 2004 11:58 am (#15 of 159)

Join us for the Philosopher's Stone Watch-A-Long
I think she either made a mistake in her head or she typed the wrong word by accident. I know I make mistakes like that. She could have been thinking about the first part of the sentense while typing the second, and accidently typed the word in her head. Stupid, yes, but I do it.

Oh maybe as someone suggested, Charlie 'did a Weasley' and dropped out a year or two early.

Charlie couldn't have been there that long ago, though. I mean, the way Wood talked about him it sounded as though he knew him. Which means he must have been there in the last five years.

Actually, wait a moment... was it the Quiddich Cup they hadn't won in seven years, or the House Cup? And was that in book 1 or book 3 when they finally won it? Because if it was book three then that means Charlie last won it four or five years before book 1 which makes perfect sense if that is what JK meant to say in the web chat (which it probably was).

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Czarina - Mar 5, 2004 2:02 pm (#16 of 159)

Just to clarify, Fred and George didn't drop out a year or two early. They left school three-quarters of the way through seventh year! They would have left Hogwarts at the end of OoP anyway. What's this about pulling a Weasley? I never got that comment. If the first three Weasleys finished school (and the way Molly talks about them, it would appear that they did) and Fred/George left in their seventh year, none of the Weasleys have dropped out a year early. Charlie might have done some sort of exchange, but he still would have ended up finishing school.

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Choices - Mar 5, 2004 8:06 pm (#17 of 159)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I can't find any mention, but do we know if Bill and Charlie took their N.E.W.T.s? That might tell us how long Charlie stayed at Hogwarts.

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S.E. Jones - Mar 5, 2004 11:58 pm (#18 of 159)

Let it snow!
Maybe I'm just really missing something but I don't understand where the idea of Charlie leaving school early came from. I'd think that, if Charlie had left school early, Fred and George would have mentioned it when they were talking about leaving and people were saying that they needed to stay. I'm more inclined to believe that he simply didn't stay on the Quidditch team for all seven years or that they didn't win the cup every year he played....

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Nathaniel Shafer - Mar 6, 2004 1:14 am (#19 of 159)

I think my major complaint is the lack of immediacy of all the comments about Charlie in SS/PS. When Wood says, "he could have played for England if he hadn't gone of chasing dragons" it doesn't sounds like this is news, but rather history. When people have just recently accepted a new job usually people will give some indication that this is a recent development.

Furthermore, if Charlie just declined an invitation to play for England he is choosing the wrong tense; i.e. he should have said, "Charlie could be playing for England [right now]". And if Charlie had quit the quidditch team early, then Wood should have said something along the lines of, "Charlie could have played for England, if he hadn't lost interest after his fifth year."

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Choices - Mar 6, 2004 10:11 am (#20 of 159)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
From what we have seen so far, I think Quidditch players are pretty gung-ho people when it comes to their game. I hardly see some guy, who is good enough a player to be on the national team after he graduates, just deciding he doesn't want to play Quidditch anymore in his fifth or sixth year. Nor do I think Charlie left school early or as Nat said, we'd have heard about it from Fred and George. I just think JKR's math is a bit off.

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S.E. Jones - Mar 6, 2004 11:35 am (#21 of 159)

Let it snow!
Nathaniel Shafer: When people have just recently accepted a new job usually people will give some indication that this is a recent development.... And if Charlie had quit the quidditch team early, then Wood should have said something along the lines of, "Charlie could have played for England, if he hadn't lost interest after his fifth year."

Why would it have been recent, wouldn't it have been at least three years ago, more if he had quit the team early because he wanted to focus on his Care of Magical Creatures class or something. I agree that Wood should have cited when he quit but I think that this would only be the case if it were seperate from him wanting to run off "chasing dragons", i.e. maybe he already knew that's what he wanted to do before he graduated from school.

Choices: I hardly see some guy, who is good enough a player to be on the national team after he graduates, just deciding he doesn't want to play Quidditch anymore in his fifth or sixth year.

I have to agree with this to some point but what are we basing this on, who are we basing this on? I think that if someone told Harry they could all but gaurantee him a place in the Auror training program after graduates as long as he buckled down and spent hours studying DADA and extra hours practicing, even if he had to drop Quidditch, he would, and we all know how much he loves the sport. Maybe Charlie was in a similar position and the last Care of Magical Creatures teacher, Professor Kettleburn, had some connections with the wizards in Romania and wrote Charlie a glowing letter of recommendation or something after he spent extra hours focusing on the subject and helping the teacher after class with the creatures or something.... There are numerous reasons he could have quit the team.

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Liz Mann - Mar 6, 2004 12:00 pm (#22 of 159)

Join us for the Philosopher's Stone Watch-A-Long
Choices - Bill took his NEWTs because he got 12 like Percy. Nobody mentioned Charlie's though.

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Choices - Mar 6, 2004 12:11 pm (#23 of 159)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
S.E. Jones - You are right, he could have quit the team, we just haven't seen any precedence for this in the books so far. I don't think anyone has quit that we know of.

Thanks Liz. Rats, if we knew that Charlie took his N.E.W.T.'s, we'd know he didn't leave school early.

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Dr Filibuster - Mar 6, 2004 12:12 pm (#24 of 159)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
That would be 12 OWLs not NEWTs wouldn't it?

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Liz Mann - Mar 6, 2004 1:42 pm (#25 of 159)

Join us for the Philosopher's Stone Watch-A-Long
Huh?

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Dr Filibuster - Mar 6, 2004 3:50 pm (#26 of 159)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Liz, in post 22 you said that Bill got 12 NEWTs like Percy. Surely you meant 12 OWLS?

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Liz Mann - Mar 6, 2004 4:09 pm (#27 of 159)

Join us for the Philosopher's Stone Watch-A-Long
Oh yeah. Sorry.

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Julia. - Mar 6, 2004 9:09 pm (#28 of 159)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
So, how did Bill do his NEWTS?

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Jo S - Mar 6, 2004 11:29 pm (#29 of 159)

I always thought that Hogwarts students were free to leave school after completing their OWLS. This is similar to the system of both England, where students are allowed to leave after their GCSE, and in Australia where they are able to leave after the SC(both around the age of 16). Any additional study is optional, and is usually only done by those who require additional study for their chosen career. Admitted more students do stay on to further study anyhow.

However in the case of Charlie, it would be perfectly acceptable to leave after his OWLS. After all, dragon keeping strikes me as the kind of occupation that requires hands on practice rather than more examinations and higher qualifications.

We know that prefects are elected in the 5th year, so it is entirely possible for Charlie to have been a prefect and still left after his OWLs. I can imagine that Mrs Weasley would have been very proud of Charlie if he got an apprenticship or similar as a dragon keeper. Charlie leaving at the end of his 5th year would also leave that gap year where Gryffindor lost spectacuarly. It would also explain why he wasnt at Hogwarts when HRH began, and why Mr and Mrs Weasley went to visit him at Christmas. As he is quite young and probably alone in Romania (dragons dont feed or clean themselve lol), they thought that they should visit him rather than leave him by himself.

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mollis - Mar 7, 2004 9:01 am (#30 of 159)

You know, that is a very good explanation Jo S. Best I've heard so far. I was thinking along the lines of a math error to explain things, but your solution may actually work. And I can't think of any evidence to contradict your idea. Well Done!

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Choices - Mar 7, 2004 10:49 am (#31 of 159)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
That is a good explanation, but we have seen no evidence that any other student has left school early. Even Fred and George stayed through most of their seventh year. It's possible I suppose, but I would come closer to believing it if we had heard of someone else leaving before completing the full seven years.

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Nathaniel Shafer - Mar 7, 2004 12:11 pm (#32 of 159)

Very good reasoning Jo S. It doesn't quite explain why Molly Weasley would be uptight about Fred and George, though. Ron seemed genuinely concerned that his mother would blame him for their earlier departure. If Charlie had done it, why would he be worried?

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Czarina - Mar 7, 2004 12:47 pm (#33 of 159)

Charlie would have left with his parents' blessing, as well as that of the teachers and Dumbledore at Hogwarts. Charlie got good grades (I assume) and was on the Quidditch team and was headed off to a respected career -- though one fraught with danger. Fred and George did not achieve high grades at all, though they are very bright young wizards. They were always in trouble. Finally, the career they were planning on was as shopkeepers/inventors. The Weasleys have high standards despite their poverty. I expect the Weasleys' poverty is not Arthur and Molly's fault, but rather a family burden from previous generations. Perhaps the Weasleys have always been Ministry workers or curse-breakers or dragon-keepers or such similar occupations (muggle equivalents: government workers, engineers or members of the military, perhaps -- equivalent in status, anyway) and shopkeeping was a career considered "below them." Anyway, Charlie could have easily left school for the reasons JoS gives and still not been a shame on the family.

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Julia. - Mar 7, 2004 3:28 pm (#34 of 159)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
Excellent explanation Jo, take 25 points. I like the idea that you can leave school after OWLs and go off to an aprenticeship if you choose to. Charlie would certianly have his mother's blessings, and it would explain the gap in the years that Charlie played quidditch and the year that Harry started, in which Gryffindor was 'flattened by Slytherin.' Also, on the first train ride to Hogwarts, Harry asks Ron what his oldest brothers do now that they've left school, ron says "Charlie's in Romania studying dragons."(PS/SS Ch. 6 Pg. 107 American) Emphasis on studying. In what would have been his seventh year at Hogwarts, it seems he was still learning about how to be a dragon keeper.

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Hem Hem - Mar 7, 2004 4:12 pm (#35 of 159)

I like your idea, Jo, although I need to ponder it for a while longer before I can be really sure that it sits comfortably with me. You'd think that if people could leave Hogwarts after their OWLs that Harry would notice some kids in his year were leaving for good after book 5. He'd probably even wonder if he'd like to do that himself (although, given current circumstances, his final decision would be a no-brainer).

Someone suggested several posts up that Charlie may have had some injuries in his last two years. That's a really good thought.

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S.E. Jones - Mar 7, 2004 4:31 pm (#36 of 159)

Let it snow!
I really like it, Jo. I don't know if it explains Bill's comment about being present at Hogwarts after Charlie would have left school, though (“Haven’t seen this place for five years.” - GoF, ch31, pg616, US). I assume he just means present at and not attending. Any thoughts on how this fits into your theory, Jo? Could he be referring to him visiting another sibling or something?

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Nathaniel Shafer - Mar 8, 2004 12:12 am (#37 of 159)

Since in OotP we see the chapter on career advice, wouldn't there be some mention of students leaving immediately? None of the snippets from the pamphlets that Harry reads indicate he can start immediately. Even Muggle Relations - which seems to be a joke of a career requiring only an O.W.L. in Muggle Studies - doesn't encourage people to start right away. These pamphlets seem intended to guide students through their N.E.W.T.s and schooling choices.

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Jo S - Mar 8, 2004 12:19 am (#38 of 159)

My head is totally spinning after reading all those replys. I think I have the answer to most of them, but bear with me, I have spent all day teaching teenagers:)

1. Choices, as we see the story through Harry's eyes, we probably haven't noticed that some students dont return for their NEWTs simply because, noone who Harry is friends with has considered not returning. I have taught high school teacher in Australia and England, and have found there are whole groups of students who return for further study, whilst in other groups virtually noone leaves. Perhaps during careers advice some students eg Millicent Bulstrode (?) may be advised to find a job rather than return to school.

2. Nathaniel - When I was considering whether to continue to study or not, my mother said you are welcome to leave school if you are going to get a job which is going to give you some further training, and a proper career, but if you are going to quit school to become a checkout chick, you had better stay at school. In the case of Charlie, he has left school to go into further training for what Molly believes is a good career. However the Twins want to leave school to open a joke shop, which Molly believes is silly and a waste of their talents, so naturally she would be upset about their decision

3. Hem Hem. I think that Harry was a bit too distracted at the end of book 5 to notice if any other students in his year were leaving. It will be interesting in book 6 to see if anyone has left. I suspect Harry is only really paying attention to those who immediately surround him ie Ron, Hermione, and to a lesser extent Neville, Seamus and Dean.

4. SE Jones - your question is probably the most difficult to fit into my theory, however I think its entirely possible for Bill to have returned to Hogwarts for some reason after he and Charlie had left. Dont forget that Percy and the Twins were in 4th and 2nd year, so he may have been in the area and dropped in. After all he has returned to Hogwarts just to watch Harry. I have a feeling that the sentence about how he hadnt been here for 5 years may be important later.

I have scoured all the books to see if there is anything that may not fit in with this theory, but nothing has yet come to the surface.

Wow, my head is spinning. Time for a drink and a lie down Smile

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Jo S - Mar 8, 2004 2:55 am (#39 of 159)

Nathaniel, I posted the last message at the same time as yours so didnt get a chance to answer that point.

When you read the chapter on careers advice there is very little discussion about what other students besides Harry and Ron might do. For Harry, he has very little choice in what he can do, because he doesnt want to go live with the Dursleys so he has to continue to his NEWTs. With Ron, although he may moan about school, I dont think he has much idea about what he really wants to do so feels he must continue rather than leave without a firm plan of what he would do.

Also we dont see every pamphlet, only snippets of those which Harry and Ron have picked up. Based on the previous information, I dont think they would have picked up pamphlets which gave them options to leave straight away.

On top of this both Harry and Ron are quite smart. McGonnagal knows this and would probably encourage them to stay on unless they had something specific in mind. I know I encourage many of my students to continue studying unless they have something specific lined up for the future.

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Choices - Mar 8, 2004 10:26 am (#40 of 159)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I think if students were leaving school early, we might see it reflected in the Quidditch teams the most. Harry or Ron would make the comment that the Ravenclaw or Slytherin or Hufflepuff or Gryffindor team is looking for members because some of the players left school early to go to work. However, we have not seen this or heard any mention of anyone leaving, so I just can't buy into this theory. When Fred and George left, the other students dubbed it "pulling a Weasley" and it seemed to be quite an unusual thing and was the talk of the school. If it was a common thing, I don't think it would have gotten so much notice - except for the spectacular way in which they took their departure.

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FCBarca - Mar 8, 2004 2:53 pm (#41 of 159)

It's probably a mistake. According to the JKR chat thread, which is obviously right, she said: "Oh dear, maths. Let me think. Bill is two years older than Charlie, who is two years older than Percy."

So it probably is a mistake. I believe Charlie is three years older than Percy, instead of two. It would be silly to complicate things by making Charlie two years older, so thinking logically, she probably made a mistake and meant to say three or maybe four.

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Detail Seeker - Mar 8, 2004 2:54 pm (#42 of 159)

Quod tempus non sanat, sanat ferrum,... so prepare
The unusual thing, that would make "pulling a Weaseley" so remarkable, would be to leave exactly before the exams. I agree, that leaving afer the OWLs would be a logical time to do so.

Measuring the Weasleley´s attitude to education, I would doubt, that Charly leaving early would not have been commented upon up to now. So I settle for the "quick but wrong answer" theory regarding the age difference between Percy and Charly. JKR cannot know every detail of her stories by heart and has admitted that in answers to other questions (like the one about the "Mystery Gryffindor girls").

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S.E. Jones - Mar 8, 2004 3:47 pm (#43 of 159)

Let it snow!
I don't know, I think Jo's got a good theory. As for hearing about other students leaving being reflected in the Quidditch teams, well, we have heard about several "new" members (e.g. Cho and Diggory) on other teams, we just don't know if this is because of students graduating or leaving after OWLs. I would think that this wouldn't be a very common practice, admittedly, but still something some kids do. We might have to wait and see if some kids don't return for book 6 (Crabbe and Goyle, maybe?).

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Czarina - Mar 8, 2004 7:00 pm (#44 of 159)

Crabbe and Goyle not coming back? Poor Draco! :-)

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Madame Librarian - Mar 8, 2004 8:27 pm (#45 of 159)

I just read the interview JKR gave to J. Paxman just before the release of OoP (6/19/03). When asked about some contract meetings with WB, she said:

"I'm so bad with dates."

Yes, I know, totally taking this out of context, I am making a great leap in applying this to her boo-boo about Bill's and Charlie's ages.

I think if she had been asked an immediate follow-up question on the Chat, she would have corrected her answer right away.

Ciao. Barb

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alexa - Mar 9, 2004 1:23 am (#46 of 159)

Yes, Barb. I agreed with you. JKR probably didn't think that giving us the wrong dates will start off a chain of analysis. But that's what making the forum so interesting.

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mollis - Mar 9, 2004 7:38 am (#47 of 159)

It's too bad there isn't some way for her to correct the mistake, if there was one, without going through the press. The press would probably have a field day with her making a mistake in an interview. That's why she can't just come back and say, "Whoops, sorry about that. There's actually 4 years between Charlie and Percy." Now if she'd just log onto the forum here and tell us, I'm sure we'd all be nice and keep it a secret!

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Nathaniel Shafer - Mar 10, 2004 12:22 am (#48 of 159)

I don't know Mollis. I think we would make a far bigger deal out of it than the general press would. I'm including myself here, when I say that we blow things far more out of proportion than most people would. I doubt most people would even notice or care.

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Loopy Lupin - Mar 10, 2004 7:57 am (#49 of 159)

I agree. The press might not even mention it too much. On the other hand, a story about Rowling's statment has caused an uproar in HP sites might make an interesting side story. Still, any "field day" would pale in comparison to what's going on on this site.

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Prefect Marcus - Mar 10, 2004 8:36 am (#50 of 159)

"Anyone can cook"
Yeah, Rowling will just have to give another chat/interview in order to clear it up. How sad. *evil grin*

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Bill and Charlie, how old are they? (Post 51 to 100)

Post  Elanor on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:48 am

zelmia - Mar 10, 2004 2:26 pm (#51 of 159)
Oh! And that's a bad miss!
I posted this on the old EZ Board Forum:
Remember: Ron says Bill and Charlie have already left. when he meets Harry on the train (PS) . He doesn't say "Bill and Charlie left ages ago" or "Bill and Charlie left when I was little" or anything of that nature.

And don't forget Ginny's remark at the end of CS about wanting ... to come to Hogwarts ever since Bill... In order for Ginny to be able to remember Bill being at school, he can't be that much older than she is, even taking into account that witches and wizards apparently have more clearly formed memories at a much younger age than Muggles.

Finally, in OP, Ron explains that "Charlie, Fred and George always made me Keep for them when they were practicing during the holidays..." I think this makes it pretty clear that the three were on the House Team at the same time. The other thing is that if Ron is that much younger than Charlie, why make him Keep? He would be too little to be any kind of a challenge so there wouldn't be any real point. Since Fred and George are 3rd years when Harry meets them, that means that they have only been on the team for a year. This means that Charlie must have only recently left Hogwarts when Harry and Ron start there.
____________________________________________________________________
Now, there is a very simple explanation for Charlie being 2 years older than Percy but 3 years ahead in school: Percy's birthday falls late in the year.
Most of us have assumed that the age cut-off for getting in to Hogwarts is the same as most western schools: Sept. 1. But the cut-ff might very well be Sept 30, since Hermione's birthday clearly falls after that date. (I don't think they make exceptions, really.)
So if Percy's birthday is anytime in October, November or December, he would had to have waited until the following school year (1987) even though he was born in 1975 (Charlie 1973). He would have been one of the first to turn 12.

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Rosariana - Mar 10, 2004 6:37 pm (#52 of 159)

I was disappointed when I read their ages in the interview. Before OP came out, I had a theory that Charlie had played Quidditch with James. It was based on the fact that Gryffindor hadn't won the Cup in seven years, and hadn't won since Charlie left. I assumed Charlie left school seven years before Harry arrived, making him fourteen years older than Harry, and old enough to have been on the team with James.

I agree with JKR that Bill is two years older than Charlie, but I think it follows logically that Charlie is four years older than Percy and JKR just made a mistake. To her it is a pretty minor mistake too! We are the ones who envision perfect timelines. All in good fun! Wink

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S.E. Jones - Mar 10, 2004 6:57 pm (#53 of 159)

Let it snow!
I was thinking about that quote from Wood in PoA, "we haven't won for seven years now" and I think it means that the last time they won was seven years ago, which would be around Charlie's fifth/OWLs year (even assuming he is only two years ahead of Percy), so he could have left after his fifth year and this quote still make sense....

EDIT: Rosariana, the quote is from PoA, not PS/SS....

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Rosariana - Mar 11, 2004 12:10 pm (#54 of 159)

Thanks S.E Jones! If only I had known that a year ago when I made up that little theory.

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Jo S - Mar 11, 2004 11:16 pm (#55 of 159)

That quote about them not having won the Quidditch cup for seven years does work even with Charlie leaving in 5th year. If you count back 7 years from PoA you have 3years where Harry has been at hogwarts. A year between Charlie leaving and Harry and Ron coming to Hogwarts (4years back), and then 3 years further back taking us to Charlies 3rd year. Now the quote says that they havent won for 7 years. This could make it when Charlie is in 3rd year. I dont think there is a quote saying that Gryffindor havent won since Charlie was in 5th year or similar is there??

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nmnjr - Mar 19, 2004 4:32 pm (#56 of 159)

"Good judgment comes from experience, and experience - well, that comes from poor judgment."
Sorry I'm late reading this thread, but I'm going back to what Nathaniel Shafer said in post 19:

I think my major complaint is the lack of immediacy of all the comments about Charlie in SS/PS. When Wood says, "he could have played for England if he hadn't gone of chasing dragons" it doesn't sounds like this is news, but rather history. When people have just recently accepted a new job usually people will give some indication that this is a recent development.

Furthermore, if Charlie just declined an invitation to play for England he is choosing the wrong tense; i.e. he should have said, "Charlie could be playing for England [right now]". And if Charlie had quit the quidditch team early, then Wood should have said something along the lines of, "Charlie could have played for England, if he hadn't lost interest after his fifth year."

I think the statement could be entirely correct, verb tense and all. The Quidditch World Cup is held every 4 years, and there was one in 1994 (GoF). That means there was also one in 1990, the year before Harry goes to Hogwarts. I'm not sure England has a national team organized in non-QWC years; the players likely play on the regular pro teams. So--and this is my point--Charlie leaving Quidditch could be a recent development in SS/PS, as could be his leaving Hogwarts.

I think Charlie is 2-3 calendar years older than Percy, and 3 academic years older.

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Fawkes Forever - Mar 22, 2004 11:45 am (#57 of 159)

Crookshanks is not ugly, he's just aesthetically challenged ;o) Hee hee, looks like there's more than one ginger male in Hermiones life!
Oh no, I can't believe I missed this thread & I was there when Liz spotted it & stratched my head & got all confused when Mare & Mollis dug into the the issue further. How in Merlins Name, did I miss an entire thread on this... LOL .... sorry Sue (Dr F) here's Johnny come lately

What I had said in the transcript thread (as mentioned by Sue) was : (Post #15)
"Liz, you're right. Unless Charlie was a particuarly gifted student who went to Hogwarts a year early? Actually, did he do his NEWTS... sorry, no books here. I think he did though. For those calculations Charlie was a seeker in his first year! Very confusing!

I'm thinking on the going to Hogwarts a year early theory, that way he would be three years above Percy at school, been a seeker in his second year & would have left by the time Harry had got to Hogwarts! That, or Percy went a year late! "

It is possible that as Nmnjr said, that there is 3 academic years between Percy & Charlie. For example, my sister is just over three years younger than me, but there where four years between us at school because of the way our birthdays fell. Mine was at the end of the cut off date for the school year (meaning I was one of the youngest in my year) & hers was near the start of the school year, (so she was one of the oldest). This is a possiblity seeing as we still don't know Hogwarts criteria for sorting students by age into years!

I did have another thought, whilst reading the posts here, (a lot of very interesting theories I may add). One that has jumped out at me, is the thought that Charlie left after 5th year. I know from my own experience with the school system here, that many students leave after GCSE's (OWLS), some to work, others to training programs, but quite a few go on to 'further education' at technical colleges, or stay on for A-Levels. These 'Tecs' (as they are known) can provide more practice education than the more academic qualifications (ala A-Levels/NEWTS). They are usually more industry based, & some are even an alternative route into University, depending on subject or level.

Because A-levels, & Tecs are considered to be 'further education', that means these exams & qualifications are optional. Legally, noone has to remain in education after the age of 16, but must at least sit GCSE level. Generally in Public schools & boarding schools (Hogwarts equivalent in the Muggle world), most students would stay on to complete their A-levels, but I'm sure one or two would leave after their GCSE's. Perhaps this is also true in HP's world? Especially if NEWTS would be of no advantage to the particular career you wished to follow, why not get a head start & follow the educational path that is tied into the job you wish to work in?

Someone (sorry can't remember who) pointed out the fact that Charlie was 'studying dragons in Romania'. So then, is it possible that Charlie left Hogwarts at 16, after his OWLS, and went to some form of further education institution in Romania to study dragon keeping? If this was the case, then in Mollys eyes, he wouldn't have dropped out of the education system & therefore wouldn't be seen as a 'failure' for leaving school?

Phew.... thats a lot of words.... Perhaps I'm grasping at straws... perhaps JK hasn't even considered this... perhaps her maths are as good as mine
If you have made it to the end of this long post, thanks for reading

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VeronikaG - Mar 31, 2004 5:30 am (#58 of 159)

Let's see how I do in math. (I got an 2.5 last year. 1 is best, 4 worst.)

If they hadn't won the cup in 7 years in POA, that would mean 5 years in PS/SS. Let's assume that PS/SS starts in 1991. Then they haven't won since 1986. If Charlie left Hogwarts in 86, aged 18 (they are 17 when year 7 STARTS, not when it ends), it means he must have been born in 1968. That makes him 8 years older than Percy. Bill would be born in 1966. If he dated Fleur in 1995, she would be 17/18, and he would be 29, making it 11 years age difference. Then again, wizards seem to grow up more quickly than muggles. They spend most of their lives as youngish adults.

The problem here is that Bill then left Hogwarts in 1984, when Ginny was 3. Could Ginny really understand enough about school to want to go there when she was 3 and younger? Even if these kids do grow up fast? Something's wrong somewhere, that's for sure.

This thread was way to long for me to read now, so maybe i have stated what has already been said. Sorry in that case.

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Czarina - Mar 31, 2004 8:06 am (#59 of 159)

Since JKR is the creator (and thus the supreme deity) of the Harry Potter universe, whatever she says is technically true. Yes, she makes mistakes. But we've seen her make errors for the sake of literary devices before. In the case of the Cup issue, several theories we have come up with make perfect sense. Charlie left school to study dragons early; he didn't win the Cup in his last year; he is two years older than Percy, but three SCHOOL YEARS older, etc.

However, JKR seemed rather convinced that all the brothers are roughly two years apart. She was quite confident during the interview. Therefore, I think that she either changed her mind partway through the series to make things easier for herself (and us, really) or she made a mistake in PS. I like the former idea, but in any case, Charlie is two years older than Percy and Bill is two years older than Charlie because JKR says so.

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Tomoé - Mar 31, 2004 9:42 am (#60 of 159)

Back in business
Wasn't there a line where Wood said Gryffindor didn't won the Quidditch cup since Charlie was seeker? I tried to find it back, by didn't succeed. Can anyone help?

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S.E. Jones - Mar 31, 2004 4:31 pm (#61 of 159)

Let it snow!
Tomoe, here are the relevant quotes:

In SS, Fred states "I tell you, we're going to win that Quidditch cup for sure this year. We haven't won since Charlie left..." (PS, ch9, pg153, US).
Wood in PoA: “Gryffindor hasn't won for seven years now." (PoA, ch8, pg143, USpb).
Bill in GoF, “Haven’t seen this place for five years,” (GoF, ch31, pg616, USpb).

These quotes all work if Charlie were two years older, if you allow for him leaving either Hogwarts or the House Quidditch team early or the team not winning every game he played in.... Oh, and if you assume that Bill returned to Hogwarts to either see Charlie graduate or to see someone else graduate (a friend of Charlie's) or to see another sibling attending at the time.....

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Prefect Marcus - Mar 31, 2004 4:55 pm (#62 of 159)

"Anyone can cook"
Edited by Mar 31, 2004 3:55 pm
...or if he returned to do research in Hogwarts' superb library.

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zelmia - Apr 1, 2004 3:55 pm (#63 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Fred might also have been referring to the team's winning full stop. He may have meant that Gryffindor hadn't won a game since Charlie left, which I personally think is the case.
I too am of the ilk who believe that Charlie left school at 17 - a year before Ron started - to go to Romania. He would have done his OWL's and would therefore be considered a "qualified wizard". He would have been "of age" so legally could leave school if he wanted. I didn't used to think so necessarily, but this would also take into account Fred having an understanding of the difference of having Charlie on the team and not - since Fred would have been at school in Charlie's last year on the team, and would have made the team himself the next year - the first year Charlie was gone.
Remember too that Ron says that "Charlie Fred and George always made me Keep for them..." This could mean that the three were on the team together, which would have been just prior to Ron (and Harry) coming to Hogwarts - in other words Autumn 1991 to Summer '92.

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Prefect Marcus - Apr 1, 2004 5:05 pm (#64 of 159)

"Anyone can cook"
Why does everybody assume that Charlie played Quidditch thru his seventh year? The exact quote from Fred is "We haven't won since Charlie left..." Exactly what it was that Charlie left is not specified. Is it not possible that Charlie decided to drop Quidditch in his seventh year?

He knew what he wanted to do in life -- study dragons. What good would Quidditch do him in that field. Skill with a broom -- ala the first task -- could come in handy, but he already was top in the school.

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zelmia - Apr 2, 2004 11:32 pm (#65 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Marcus, I think that the opposite is actually true. If Percy had played Quidditch through his 7th year, then Fred's remark wouldn't make much sense ["We haven't won since Charlie left"] since they wouldn't actually have played any matches at all since Charlie had left school.
Charlie being 2 years older than Percy - but apparently 3 school years older than Percy - means that the latest Charlie could have left school would be the summer just prior to Ron (and Harry, et al) beginning at Hogwarts.
However, what I think most people are now saying is that Charlie must have left - at least the Quidditch team - before his 7th and final year at Hogwarts.

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Chris. - Apr 3, 2004 9:35 am (#66 of 159)

HBP: 16th July 2005: the most anticipated day in history
Marcus, Charlie's Quidditch reflexes could come in useful when dodging those dragon flames!

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S.E. Jones - Apr 3, 2004 9:30 pm (#67 of 159)

Let it snow!
Zelmia: I think that the opposite is actually true. If Percy had played Quidditch through his 7th year, then Fred's remark wouldn't make much sense ["We haven't won since Charlie left"] since they wouldn't actually have played any matches at all since Charlie had left school.

Zelmia, you lost me there. Are you assuming that Fred was talking about winning matches or the Quidditch Cup? Everyone looks at the last part of that statement, but rarely the entire quote, it seems. He was talking about the Cup:

Fred: "I tell you, we're going to win that Quidditch cup for sure this year. We haven't won since Charlie left..." (PS, ch9, pg153, US)

I'm confused because they could've won various matches here and there but not enough to win the Cup at the end of the year. If Charlie was their leading player and was the deciding factor in their matches, then his quitting would've put an end to their winning streak. He could've left the team (whether he left school or not is almost a second question) prior to his seventh year. If he quit the team after his fourth or fifth year, Fred and George could've potentially been a part of the team, hence the "we" in that statement (though this could be referring to Gryffindor in general) and Ron's comment about having to Keep for them over the summer (if Charlie were in his fifth year, they would've been in their second and could've been playing on the team; if he'd been in his fourth, they'd have been in their first and may have been on a reserve team like Alicia Spinnet was prior to PS)....

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zelmia - Apr 6, 2004 5:44 pm (#68 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Well, since I typed "Percy" insted of "Charlie" I could see how that could be confusing. Sorry!
In any event, SE Jones, you have simply re-iterated what I was saying, sans typo.

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Loopy Lupin - Apr 7, 2004 2:21 pm (#69 of 159)

I wish JKR wasn't so bad at math.

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dobbyiscool - Apr 7, 2004 4:18 pm (#70 of 159)

Whatever women do they must do twice as well as men to be thought half as good. Luckily this is not difficult. --Charlotte Whitton
I always thought that Charlie played all the way through school, that's the way it sounds to me. I don't remember where, but someone said Charlie could have played profesional Quiditch, except he went chasing those dragons instead. To me that sounds like it was sort of a desision he made just after school.

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Loopy Lupin - Apr 7, 2004 4:23 pm (#71 of 159)

Oh, here we go again. I believe this thread has come full circle.

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Prefect Marcus - Apr 7, 2004 4:54 pm (#72 of 159)

"Anyone can cook"
They have a tendancy to do that, Loopy. It's in the nature of these beasts.

Marcus

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prof sprout - Apr 7, 2004 6:22 pm (#73 of 159)

Well, I'm not going to say either way if Charlie stayed early or not. But while I was rereading section on the different career paths while Harry was with McGonnagal and Umbridge, she said he would have to have more training and studying after school to be an auror. So either way it is possible that the phrase "studying" dragons could mean before he graduated or after he graduated. Before JKR said Charlie's age I always assumed that it was after he graduated. But this forum makes me wonder. Man I need to stay away and quit analyzing it. Surprised)

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Dr Filibuster - Apr 8, 2004 12:03 am (#74 of 159)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Depends what you mean by "graduated".

When people on this forum say "graduate" and "graduation" I assume you mean stayed at Hogwarts long enough to sit all one's NEWT exams?

Am I assuming correctly? Would there be anything else implied?

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prof sprout - Apr 8, 2004 7:14 am (#75 of 159)

That is what I mean, stayed for their 7th and final year.

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Dr Filibuster - Apr 8, 2004 11:29 am (#76 of 159)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Thanks Prof...it's what I'd assumed but I thought I'd better check.

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Nathaniel Shafer - Apr 14, 2004 1:15 am (#77 of 159)

After Oliver Wood's much repeated comment about Gryffindor not having won for seven years, he continues, "Okay, so we've had the worst luck in the world -- injuries -- then the tournament getting called off last year. . . ." If Charlie left Hogwarts early, shouldn't that make Wood's list of reasons why they've had bad luck? Clearly, Wood is familiar with Charlie. Even if it's not unusual for a student to leave after fifth year, the majority of students seem to stay. Wood who eats, sleeps, and breathes Quidditch would be baffled by Charlie and definitely consider it bad luck for an exceptional seeker to leave Hogwarts early.

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Prefect Marcus - Apr 14, 2004 9:20 am (#78 of 159)

"Anyone can cook"
In context, he is talking about the current team, which had been intact for three years -- ever since Harry joined it.

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Loopy Lupin - Apr 15, 2004 7:17 am (#79 of 159)

I don't know that that would be considered "luck" one way or another, Natti. I do think he would be quite sore with Charlie for leaving early if that is, in fact, what he did.

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S.E. Jones - Apr 19, 2004 11:30 pm (#80 of 159)

Let it snow!
I'm sorry, this is completely off-topic and irrelevant, but I didn't think it warrented its own thread... Do you all think Bill is short for William (as I originally thought) or is it a more familiar form of Bilius?

More on-topic: I don't see a problem with the ages she stated in the interview, especially given some of the things we've come up with to explain quotes. Instead of assuming that she got the ages wrong and throwing all other quotes and the rest of the Weasley timeline into speculation, why not just assume she pulled a 'Flint' on the "seven years" comment and it was supposed to be "several years"? Though, I still think it can work as is.....

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Loopy Lupin - Apr 20, 2004 8:07 am (#81 of 159)

I think if they had named Bill, "Bilius," it would have been cruel to saddle another child with that name, even if it is only Ron's middle name.

The problem with assuming the "seven" was supposed to be "several" is that we would be going from the pure and rampant speculation that we so love to engage in to re-writing the books. At least with the speculation we try to make things work based on what JKR has said or written. We can't really go changing the text to suit our needs I do not think.

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Tomoé - Apr 21, 2004 5:04 pm (#82 of 159)

Back in business
I found my quote back!

"Gryffindor hadn't won the Quidditch Cup since the legendary Charlie Weasley (Ron's second-oldest brother) had been Seeker." (UK PoA, ch.15, p.221)

What's that add up? not much, except that Charlie could have change his position to replace some important player(s) who left the school, but didn't find good enough player(s) to replace him/her/them and win the Cup again.

Edit : Maybe Charlie did miracles with a pretty under-skilled team and that's why he's cosidered as legendary by the Gryffindor.

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Robert Dierken - May 10, 2004 6:11 pm (#83 of 159)

Where I grew up (Dayton, Ohio), the cutoff date for school entry was on November 1. Classes started each year on a Tuesday in September, which was one of the days from the 2nd through the 8th.

I suspect that the Hogwarts cutoff date is October 1, although it might be anywhere from September 20 through about October 24 or so. This theory is based on the following:

(1) Hermione's birthday is on September 19, and is apparently younger than Harry. (2) Angelina's birthday is somewhere in the week before Halloween, and she is definitely holder than Gred & Forge, since she manages to get her name into the goblet.

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Odds Bodikins - May 13, 2004 11:06 am (#84 of 159)

I think the cutoff is September 1st. I think I remember seeing that Hermione started early because she "gifted".

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S.E. Jones - May 13, 2004 5:22 pm (#85 of 159)

Let it snow!
It is never stated anywhere that Hermione started early because she is gifted. According to the "official" (i.e. approved by JKR, who also made necessary corrections) timeline released by WB on the CoS DVD, Hermione was born in 1980, along with Ron and Harry, making her the same age (even a few months younger). Here's the Lexicon's timeline page for Hermione.

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Tomoé - May 13, 2004 7:53 pm (#86 of 159)

Back in business
I never saw the timeline on the DVD. Where? Where? Where? ^_^

(I'm clueless with those DVD, could they make a version for people who don't get those games?)

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S.E. Jones - May 13, 2004 8:17 pm (#87 of 159)

Let it snow!
It's on the DVD-Rom features, apparently, so you have to use your PC to access it. Here's what the Lexicon has to say about the DVD timeline. Some don't consider it canon because JKR didn't write it down herself, but others do because she looked it over and only made changes here and there and so they view the unchanged info as being already correct and thus canon because she approved it....

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Neville Longbottom - May 14, 2004 6:19 am (#88 of 159)


Instead of assuming that she got the ages wrong and throwing all other quotes and the rest of the Weasley timeline into speculation, why not just assume she pulled a 'Flint' on the "seven years" comment


I agree. The fans wanted to know how old Bill and Charlie were, and therefore used two or three comments from the books (which even contradict themselves a bit) to clarify the question. In truth, I think JKR didn't connect the seven years and the since Charlie has been seeker quote in her mind. We fans can connect it, because we read the books several times, but when she wrote the third book for the first time, it's completely realistic to think that she just forgot the quote from the first one. Another example: In PS Nick didn't eat for nearly 400 years, in CS he had his 500th Death day. I think the ages of the Weasleys flint is similar. In fact, the Deathday flint is far more obvious then the one about Bill and Charlie's age. JKR stated in the chat that they aren't much older than the other Weasley silblings, and personally, I see this as canon, at least more than two vague comments from the books.
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Ozymandias - May 14, 2004 10:36 am (#89 of 159)

Nothing beside remains...
The two years between Bill, Charlie and Percy certainly does seem to be her intent, even if the math doesn't work out so well.

And I love the use of 'flint' as a verb, Neville. Smile

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Madame Librarian - May 21, 2004 5:25 am (#90 of 159)

Verb?

Ciao. Barb

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Emily - May 31, 2004 3:00 pm (#91 of 159)

Because Flint stayed a year longer than he should of in the books, someone asked JKR about it and she said he had to do a year again. Now some people use 'Flint' as 'repeating a year' I think. Such as, 'There would need to be an eighth book if Harry Flints.' (Someone correct me if I'm wrong)

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Mare - Jun 1, 2004 12:48 am (#92 of 159)

Emily, in later editions the Flint error got corrected, and he didn't have to do a year again. So my guess is that's why "to flint" probably means "to make a mistake". A mistake that, if some-one points it out, could even get corrected in later editions.

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Tomoé - Jun 1, 2004 2:52 am (#93 of 159)

Back in business
The Flint error got corrected?

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Mare - Jun 1, 2004 3:18 am (#94 of 159)

I thought so, but I can't seem to find any evidence right now... (Lexicon doesn't help) Hmmm. Any members with newer editions willing to help out?

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Loopy Lupin - Jun 1, 2004 6:19 am (#95 of 159)

The wand order problem was corrected. I've never heard of Flint being corrected.

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Nathaniel Shafer - Jun 2, 2004 12:05 am (#96 of 159)

In most recent editions of PS, Marcus Flint is listed as a 5th year instead of as a 6th year so yes, the original Flint has been corrected.

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Mare - Jun 2, 2004 2:12 am (#97 of 159)

Thank you Nathaniel! I looked at the Lexicon and the info isn't there :gasp: and then I googled Marcus flint... And found he has his own website. (Yes I was as shocked as every-one else will be) but the information wasn't there either. So thank you very much, because I was already starting to doubt my memory.

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Loopy Lupin - Jun 2, 2004 6:10 am (#98 of 159)

Awww boo! That's cheating!!!!

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Emily - Jun 2, 2004 1:50 pm (#99 of 159)

Sorry, I had not realized that that error had been corrected. Thanks, Marè.

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Verschwinden Sie - Jun 2, 2004 2:56 pm (#100 of 159)

Well, the thought about one being born late in the year and one being born early in the year to explain how Charlie and Percy could be roughly two years apart in age but three years in school has been thoroughly covered, and I know it happens, because my little brothers were born 13 months apart, but were two grades apart in school because the second one was born just after the start of the school term, so I won't cover it.

However, I keep reading what people are saying about Charlie Weasley having to attend school at least four years before because Gryffindor didn't win the Quidditch cup the year prior to Harry and Ron starting Hogwarts (which was Percy's 5th year and could have been, theoretically, Charlie's year or his first out of school). I think there are two things that need to be noted about this. First, at no point does J.K. Rowling say, in any way, shape, or form, that Charlie Weasley won every Quidditch match he played, or that Gryffindor won the last match he played for them. She just says they haven't won since he left... so he could have played the year before Harry arrived at school, lost the Quidditch cup, and the statement "we haven't won since Charlie left" would still be entirely true.

Also, I don't recall at any point in SS that it says Charlie Weasley works with dragons... only that he deals with them (and notice in the movie, Ron says "Change of plans... my parents decided to go to Romania, to visit my brother Charlie. He's studying dragons there!"), so it's entirely possible he was actually still in the seventh year of his education when Sorcerer's Stone started, and was interning in Romania.

Just a thought.
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Bill and Charlie, how old are they? (Post 101 to 159)

Post  Elanor on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:49 am

Loopy Lupin - Jun 2, 2004 4:34 pm (#101 of 159)
Well, we haven't heard anything about internships at this point. Doesn't saying that G-dor hasn't won "since Charlie left" imply that they won before he left?

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Verschwinden Sie - Jun 2, 2004 9:08 pm (#102 of 159)

Yeah, it does imply they won before he left. However, it doesn't mean they won JUST before he left... only that they won while he was on the team.

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Lexicon Steve - Jun 5, 2004 4:01 pm (#103 of 159)

In my opinion, you have to take the entire answer to the "how old are Bill and Charlie" chat question in order to understand what she intends.

Before she even tackles the question, she makes a very telling comment about maths. Her uncertainty means she is working out the answer right then and there, the way I look at it. She didn't know flat out. So that means she's got a general idea but no way in those few seconds to research to make sure she's correct.

Then she says that they're two years apart. What is she really saying? Here's my interpretation of her answer. I think she's saying that as far as she can figure without having the time to do the work properly and therefore with being forced to do the math in her head, they're two years apart.

Given that, what do we actually know from her response? We can't dismiss the answer out of hand, even though there's canon evidence against it. She did actually try to give the right answer. So even if canon implies more time, we have to assume that the space between the boys isn't very much, "something around two years."

However, we don't have to go with exactly two years and try to find fancy math ways to make that work out. She doesn't really do fancy math stuff. She wouldn't have come up with some fancy, clever, math way to make them two years apart in age and three years apart in school. That's out of character for her. What is in characer for her, as we see in plenty of examples, is to write it the way she wants to and leave a trail of minor errors in the books. It makes more sense to figure that they boys are about two years apart, maybe a bit more, and that some bits in the books might not quite fit that.

If Charlie were two years older than Percy, he would be at Hogwarts when Harry was in his first year. Yeah, we can invent reasons why he wouldn't be there, but he was Head Boy so I think it's pretty solid that he attended in his seventh year. So the next logical possibility is that Charlie is really three years older than Percy. That still doesn't fit every canon reference to Quidditch Cups and games won, but it fits what I see as Rowling's intention in her answer. And then of course there's no reason why Bill couldn't be two years older than Charlie.

There's still a mystery, of course, because Percy doesn't turn 17 until his seventh year at Hogwarts, finally learning to apparate the summer after, while Fred and George turn 17 in April of their sixth year. That really makes the actual ages tricky to figure out. Is that another example of a minor error in canon?



sigh* Maths.

On that confusing note, I'll wander off to work on a Lexicon page on the subject...

Steve
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Mare - Jun 5, 2004 4:14 pm (#104 of 159)

Thank you Steve, you put it down very clearly. What I find interesting now is that there is not supposed to be a big age-gap between the boys. Which doesn't help the theory of the "missing/dead Weasley" that would make Ron the seventh child.

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Tomoé - Jun 9, 2004 2:27 pm (#105 of 159)

Back in business
Charlie was Head boy? I though only Percy and Bill were. Did I miss something?

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Julia. - Jun 9, 2004 3:50 pm (#106 of 159)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
No, you're right Tomoe. Bill and Percy were Head Boy, Charlie was quidditch captain.

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Tomoé - Jun 9, 2004 5:14 pm (#107 of 159)

Back in business
Thanks Julia, I wasn't that lost then. ^_^

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Nathan Zimmermann - Jun 21, 2004 8:41 pm (#108 of 159)

From the information in the books we can derive the follow possible birth years and ages for Bill and Charlie

From Prisioner of Azkaban Chapter 8

Griffyndor hasn't won for seven years now. Based on that staement the last term in which Griffyndor won the house cup was 1985-1986 school year since prisoner of Azkaban is set in 1993-94 school year

From Philosopher's Stone chapter 9

We haven't won since Charlie left.

This would mean that Charlie's last year was 1985-86 and not the 1984-1985 school term as the lexicon time line suggests and his first year would be the 1979-80 school year. Depnding on which is correct Charlie Weasley is born 1967 or 1968

Assuming Bill is no more than two years older his last term would have fallen in the 1982-83 or 1983-1984 school years. This means his first year would have fallen in either the 1976-77 or 1977-78 school year which would place his birthdate in 1965 or 1966

Making Charlie no more than 29 in August of 1996 and Bill would be no more than 31 years old in August of 1996

Best Regards, Nathan Zimmermann

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Loopy Lupin - Jun 25, 2004 6:42 am (#109 of 159)

What is in characer for her, as we see in plenty of examples, is to write it the way she wants to and leave a trail of minor errors in the books. It makes more sense to figure that they boys are about two years apart, maybe a bit more, and that some bits in the books might not quite fit that. -- Lexicon Steve

I wish there was a better way to say "ditto," but let me just say "Ditto!"

Its been very interesting to see all the logical gymnastics we've gone through to make their ages add up correctly. I think it is enough to say that Bill and Charlie are twenty-somethings not very long out of Hogwarts. That "fits" with statements made in the canon and, not to mention, makes Bill's "private" English lessons with 18 year-old Fleur less "icky" than if he were 30 or something.

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Robert Dierken - Jul 6, 2004 4:09 pm (#110 of 159)

Another quidditch chronology:

1986-1987 Charlie's 4th year, and Gryffindor wins the cup for the last time until 1993-1994, which is 7 years later. Several good players graduate and are replaced by poor ones.

1987-1988 Gryffindor goes 1-2 despite Charlie's 5th year performance.

1988-1989 Charlie's 6th year. They go 2-1 because they have Oliver, but are beaten out on tie break.

1989-1990 Charlie's 7th year and Oliver's 3rd. Gryffindor goes 2-1 and is beaten out on tie break. One chaser, two beaters and Charlie depart.

1990-1991 Oliver's 4th year. Angelina, Alicia, Fred and George join the team, the other chaser subs as a seeker, but is not very good and Gryffindor goes 0-3. This seeker departs.

1991-1992 Oliver's 5th year. Katie and Harry join the team, and at this point Gryffindor has not won a match since Charlie left. Gryffindor goes 2-1 and loses out on tie break.

1992-1993 All teams play only one match. Gryffindor goes 1-0, but loses the cup on tie-break.

1993-1994 Gryffindor goes 2-1, and wins the cup on tie-break in Oliver's 7th year.

By this reckoning Charlie is about 8 years older than Harry and Ron. At the beginning of OoP Harry is 15, so Charlie is about 23, Bill 25, and Fleur is 18 or 19.

Oliver and Charlie are on the team together for two seasons.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Jul 6, 2004 8:16 pm (#111 of 159)

This alternative chronology would make Charlie Weasley's first year at Hogwarts the 1983-84 school year. This would mean that Charlie was born in 1972 and he graduated Hogwarts in June 1990 A year before Tonks. Making him no more than 23 years old in August 1995

If Bill is no more than 2 years older than Charlie. His last year at Hogwarts would have been the 1987-88 school year. Thus, his first year at Hogwarts would have been the 1981-82 school year. This means he was born in 1970 making him no more than 25 years old in August of 1995.

This means that Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred and George Weasley are contemporaries of Nymphadora Tonks. This alternative chronology does not confirm J.K. Rowling's statement regarding the ages of Bill, Charlie, and Percy. Because, According to this chronology the space interval between the births of Charlie and Percy Weasley is four years.

Best Regards, Nathan

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Loopy Lupin - Jul 9, 2004 12:05 pm (#112 of 159)

Charlie and Percy Weasley is four years. Nathan Zimmerman

I thought she said their was 2 years between Charlie and Percy.

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Julia. - Jul 9, 2004 1:21 pm (#113 of 159)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
Well, she said there are two years between Charlie and Percy, but I'm not sure I believe it.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Jul 9, 2004 2:36 pm (#114 of 159)

Loopy Lupin, neither the calculations I posted earlier or the alternative posted by Robert Dierken support J.K. Rowling's statement about the age of the eldest Weasley children.

Robert Dierken's calculations show approximately a four year interval between the birth of Charlie Weasley and the birth of Percy Weasley.

Robert Dierken - Jul 6, 2004 4:09 pm (#110 of 114)

Another quidditch chronology:

1986-1987 Charlie's 4th year, and Gryffindor wins the cup for the last time until 1993-1994, which is 7 years later. Several good players graduate and are replaced by poor ones.

1987-1988 Gryffindor goes 1-2 despite Charlie's 5th year performance.

1988-1989 Charlie's 6th year. They go 2-1 because they have Oliver, but are beaten out on tie break.

1989-1990 Charlie's 7th year and Oliver's 3rd. Gryffindor goes 2-1 and is beaten out on tie break. One chaser, two beaters and Charlie depart.

1990-1991 Oliver's 4th year. Angelina, Alicia, Fred and George join the team, the other chaser subs as a seeker, but is not very good and Gryffindor goes 0-3. This seeker departs.

1991-1992 Oliver's 5th year. Katie and Harry join the team, and at this point Gryffindor has not won a match since Charlie left. Gryffindor goes 2-1 and loses out on tie break.

1992-1993 All teams play only one match. Gryffindor goes 1-0, but loses the cup on tie-break.

1993-1994 Gryffindor goes 2-1, and wins the cup on tie-break in Oliver's 7th year.

By this reckoning Charlie is about 8 years older than Harry and Ron. At the beginning of OoP Harry is 15, so Charlie is about 23, Bill 25, and Fleur is 18 or 19.

Oliver and Charlie are on the team together for two seasons.

Robert Dierken's calculations would make Charlie Weasley's first year at Hogwarts the 1983-84 school year. This would mean that Charlie was born in 1972 and he graduated Hogwarts in June 1990 A year before Tonks. Making him no more than 23 years old in August 1995

If Bill is no more than 2 years older than Charlie. His last year at Hogwarts would have been the 1987-88 school year. Thus, his first year at Hogwarts would have been the 1981-82 school year. This means he was born in 1970 making him no more than 25 years old in August of 1995.

While my calculations show a interval of approximately nine years between the birth of Charlie and the birth of Percy Weasley.

Nathan Zimmermann - Jun 21, 2004 8:41 pm (#108 of 114)

From the information in the books we can derive the follow possible birth years and ages for Bill and Charlie

From Prisioner of Azkaban Chapter 8

Griffyndor hasn't won for seven years now. Based on that staement the last term in which Griffyndor won the house cup was 1985-1986 school year since prisoner of Azkaban is set in 1993-94 school year

From Philosopher's Stone chapter 9

We haven't won since Charlie left.

This would mean that Charlie's last year was 1985-86 and not the 1984-1985 school term as the lexicon time line suggests and his first year would be the 1979-80 school year. Depnding on which is correct Charlie Weasley is born 1967 or 1968

Assuming Bill is no more than two years older his last term would have fallen in the 1982-83 or 1983-1984 school years. This means his first year would have fallen in either the 1976-77 or 1977-78 school year which would place his birthdate in 1965 or 1966

Making Charlie no more than 29 in August of 1996 and Bill would be no more than 31 years old in August of 1996

We know that Percy Weasley's last year at Hogwarts was the 1993-94 school year. This means his first year at Hogwarts was the 1987-88 achool year. Therefore, Percy Weasley was born in 1976.

Under Robert Dierken's timline Charlie Weasley is born in 1972 an interval of four years.

Under my timeline Charlie would have been no less than eight years years older than Percy. Since, my calculations range his year of birth from 1967 to 1968.

Neither of which, support J.K. Rowling's statement that each of the eldest Weasley children being born at two year intervals.

Best Regards, Nathan

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haymoni - Jul 9, 2004 5:06 pm (#115 of 159)

Sorry but in the chat did she say that Charlie & Percy were 2 years apart or was it Bill & Charlie that were 2 years apart?

I don't know why I'm even asking this. I don't really care - they are older - it just doesn't matter to me how much older.

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zelmia - Jul 9, 2004 11:32 pm (#116 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
They are all 2 years apart with the exception of Ginny and Ron. Bill is about 10 years older than Ginny. When we first meet him, in the flesh, in GF, he is about 23. This perfectly coincides with his remark late in the book about not having been back at Hogwarts in 5 years (making the year he left school 1989) as well as Ginny's remark in CS about having wanted to go to Hogwarts "ever since Bill".
Again, go back to Harry and Ron's first meeting on the train. Ron says, "Charlie's in Romania studying dragons and Bill is doing something for Gringotts." Ron doesn't even know what his eldest brother does for a living, only that he works for Gringotts. It might be because it's too new for him to have any real knowledge of the details of Bill's position.
He also says "Bill and Charlie have already left [school]." Not, "left ages ago" or anything else to indicate that they are all that much older. On the contrary, Ron indicates their greatest accomplishments (which he personally finds daunting) as being Head Boy and Captain of Quidditch respectively. Both of these Ron holds in greater esteem than either of their post-school occupations, at this point. To my mind, all of this indicates that Bill and Charlie have very recently left school when Ron is starting.
Another thing is that just because Charlie was a good Seeker doesn't mean that the rest of the team was all that great. And do we really know that the 7 years from the last time Gryffindor won the Quidditch cup has that much to do with Charlie's particular performance? I think Charlie being an exceptional Seeker and the team winning the Q-cup might have had more to do with the combination of the entire team. If all of their Chasers graduated in one year (as they will have in book 6), it could mean that the Gryffindor team was simpy unable to recapture the synergy it took for them to retain their title. And it does parallel Wood's own Quidditch career at school, as well.

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Robert Dierken - Jul 13, 2004 8:52 pm (#117 of 159)

If Charlie is two years older than Percy, we need an explanation for his absence from Hogwarts in PS/SS. Otherwise, he would be a seventh year in 1991-1992, but he has already gone to Romania.

We are told that Gryffindor has not won at Quidditch since Charlie left (in PS/SS) so I interpreted this to mean they had not won any of the games in 1990-1991, and that Charlie was a seventh year student in 1989-1990.

In PoA we are told that Gryffindor has not won the Quidditch Cup for seven years. If Charlie was a seventh year then, he is somewhat older than I am making him out to be.

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S.E. Jones - Jul 14, 2004 1:10 am (#118 of 159)

Let it snow!
I'm going to go with 1) the two years is approximated (when asked I say I'm four years older than my little sister, not four years, four months and a day, give or take) and thus was a year or two ahead of Percy in school (can't really make the "or two" work, though), 2) Charlie really did quit the team prior to graduating, thus graduated the year before Harry got there but just wasn't playing (or perhaps hadn't been for a couple years), or 3) Charlie really did leave schoo early and entered into a program to study dragons in Romania just after his fifth year (we haven't seen this before, but then again, Harry is only just know at the age where we would get to see it so we might have to wait and do a head count of who comes back to school in HBP and who doesn't)....

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zelmia - Jul 15, 2004 12:06 am (#119 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
It's perfectly simple: Charlie had just graduated the summer term right before Harry and company start their Hogwarts careers. HRH begin at Hogwarts in September of 1991 (based on Nick's cake.) Charlie left school the previous June (also 1991).
What's confusing is the idea in PA that Gryffindor hasn't won the Quidditch Cup in 7 years (or since 1987). But this doesn't necessarily have anything to do with Charlie. In fact, if they hadn't won the Q-Cup in 7 years (as of PA) it would have been Charlie's 2nd year on the team - assuming he made the House Team as soon as he was eligible. Therefore, as I mentioned in a previous post, it seems that in spite of Charlie's exceptional skill as Seeker, there were too many other factors that prevented Gryffindor from retaining their title; such as most of the team graduating or being plagued by injuries, etc.
Or, like several people have suggested, he simply left Hogwarts early to study dragons and did not go through his 7th year.

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snowflake - Jul 17, 2004 6:00 pm (#120 of 159)

In PA when McGonagall gave back to Harry his Firebolt (p. 184 UK version), it would have been the 8th year they would have lost if they do not win this year. I figure that Charlie must have graduated in Spring 1986, so he was at Hogwards 1979-1986; born in 1968. And Bill said at the Triwizard cup (1995), when he came to Hogwards to watch Harry (p. 535 GF UK version), he said that he had not seen Hogwards for 5 years. So I assume that he graduated in Spring 1990; was in Hogwards 1983-1990; was born in 1972. Percy dob 1976; Fred and George 1978; Ron 1980; Ginny, 1981.

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S.E. Jones - Jul 17, 2004 6:07 pm (#121 of 159)

Let it snow!
Snowflake, problem with that is that we are repeatedly told that Bill is the eldest of the brothers, and Charlie is thus younger than Bill, not older than him.

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dobbyiscool - Jul 17, 2004 6:50 pm (#122 of 159)

Whatever women do they must do twice as well as men to be thought half as good. Luckily this is not difficult. --Charlotte Whitton
Just becuse it's be 5 yrs. sense he was last at Hogwarts, doesn't meen he graduated 5 years before, he could've come back for some reason.

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S.E. Jones - Jul 17, 2004 7:06 pm (#123 of 159)

Let it snow!
Well, the five years would fit within the age range she gave for Bill, Charlie and Percy of two years apart each....

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zelmia - Jul 17, 2004 8:00 pm (#124 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
I'm having a hard time understanding why this is so complicated. There are only 3 possibilities, all of which include the fact that Gryffindor simply didn't win the Cup again:
1) Charlie left school in the preceding term before Ron, Harry et al started (Summer 1991)
2) Charlie left school early to pursue career in dragons
3) Charlie left the Team to pursue career in dragons
All three are equally plausible, although #1 doesn't fit in very well with the Twins' remark "We haven't won since Charlie left" (PS/SS). If Charlie had just recently 'graduated' this remark really doesn't make any sense.
And since we know that at some point he was made Captain, we can therefore deduce that either #2 or #3 are what happened with Charlie's school career. But neither of these seems to have had any direct bearing on Gryffindor winning the Q Cup. Again, there were clearly other factors involved that Charlie's excellence as Seeker/Captain could simply not overcome.
Also, I am going to guess that if Charlie did leave school early, it was probably right after 5th year. [While there is no canon evidence for it, I am going to guess that only upper classmen (5th years and up) would be allowed to make Captain just as only upper classmen can be Prefects.]
Paranthetically, if Charlie had decided not to rejoin the Team in his 6th year, that would have been the Twins' first year. Wood have been a 3rd year and very likely played with Charlie for a season. The point being that all 3 boys would have seen the difference of Charlie's presence on the pitch.

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S.E. Jones - Jul 17, 2004 9:05 pm (#125 of 159)

Let it snow!
Zelmia: All three are equally plausible, although #1 doesn't fit in very well with the Twins' remark "We haven't won since Charlie left" (PS/SS). If Charlie had just recently 'graduated' this remark really doesn't make any sense.

It could make sense if Charlie wasn't on the team all six possible years. If he quit prior to graduating and then graduated just prior to Ron and Harry coming to Hogwarts, and Fred and George were referring to him leaving the team and not school, then it makes sense. That's why it's so complicated....

Overall, though, I think I agree... At least I think I do.... Nice and ambiguous, huh?....

EDIT: By the way, can anyone find the quote about Charlie being Captain? I can't seem to find it....

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Julia. - Jul 17, 2004 9:22 pm (#126 of 159)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
Found it Sarah!

"I'm the sixth in our family to go to Hogwarts. You could say I've got a lot to live up to. Bill and Charlie have already left--Bill was head boy and Charlie was captian of Quiddich." (PS/SS ch. 6, pg. 98 US)

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S.E. Jones - Jul 17, 2004 9:24 pm (#127 of 159)

Let it snow!
Thanks Julia! And here I was going crazy looking through PoA...!

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zelmia - Jul 18, 2004 12:42 am (#128 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Actually, what I was saying is that I don't think it's complicated, but most others on this thread apparently do. I think where it appears to be complicated - but really isn't - is because a lot of folks can't seem to separate the idea of Gryffindor winning the Q Cup and Charlie being on the team. By that I mean that people seem to assume that Gryffindor didn't win the Cup because Charlie left the team/school. But as I have explained, one doesn't necessarily have anything to do with the other.

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The giant squid - Jul 18, 2004 12:48 am (#129 of 159)

Exactly, Zelmia...just because Charlie was on the team (and good enough to go pro, according to Wood) doesn't mean they necessarily had to win the Cup. He could have been a very frustrated captain for those last couple of years, with injuries, lucky shots or just incompetent players keeping him from that elusive goal.

Problem solved...not that it'll stop the discussion. Wink

--Mike

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Maddest Dragon - Aug 2, 2004 11:40 pm (#130 of 159)

Here's my theory about the ages of the Weasleys:

Charlie is actually three years older than Percy and four school years ahead of him (Charlie being born in the summer, so he could start at Hogwarts when he'd just turned eleven, while Percy was born in the fall or winter and didn't start until he was almost twelve). This is close enough to JK's guesstimate of two years between the brothers, but it fits the rest of the details better.

Charlie stayed at Hogwarts through his seventh year, finishing a little over a year before SS begins. That leaves a whole school year between Charlie's leaving the Quidditch team and Harry's joining. That was the year in which Oliver Wood became captain--somehow he seemed to me to be a well established captain when he was first introduced. The Seeker that year either was in seventh year (most likely) or gave up quidditch after that (possibly because he or she wasn't that good at it). The last time Gryffindor won the Quidditch Cup was during Charlie's fourth year, after which, as other posters have said, they may have won individual games but not the Cup. I suspect Charlie did something Oliver kept harping on in PoA--remember how, before the final game, he kept badgering Harry not to catch the Snitch until Gryffindor was over fifty points ahead? "'Only if we're more than fifty points up, Harry, or we win the match but lose the Cup.'" Oliver saw Charlie, perhaps in more than one game, catch the Snitch before Gryffindor had enough points to win the Cup, or perhaps even the match. If, as others have speculated, the team as a whole wasn't playing very well, Charlie would have done this to save face--knowing that his team couldn't possibly manage to win the Cup, but at least they could win the match, or, barring that, not lose as badly. This would also explain why Fred and George bet their entire life savings on Krum doing the same in GoF. They'd followed the World Cup closely enough to know that it's likely to go that way, and they knew that the Seeker may well do such a thing, because they'd seen their brother do it.

Of course, by my reasoning, Fred, George, and Charlie couldn't all have been on the Quidditch team at the same time, because Charlie's seventh year would have been the twins' first. (Probably, Charlie's game-winning-but-Cup-losing Snitch catch happened that year--Oliver would have been on the team, the twins would have been watching from the stands, and none of them ever forgot it.) Earlier, someone mentioned Ginny saying that the three of them used to make her Keep for them when they practiced. But that doesn't necessarily mean they were all on the team at the time. I can easily picture Charlie, home for the holidays and excited about Quidditch, roping his younger siblings into practicing with him. Which is probably why the twins got to be such good Beaters--Charlie made them play those positions so he could Seek.

Back to the question of ages. At least one poster thought that it wasn't likely Percy had turned seventeen by the end of his sixth year, because he didn't pass his Apparations test until the following summer. But I think it would be just like Percy to wait. When the twins first tell Harry about Apparating, they stress how difficult it is and how things can go horribly wrong. Seventeen is the minimum age at which you can learn to Apparate. It may be something that takes most people a long time (several months at least) to learn and perfect. The twins seem to be exceptionally quick studies when it comes to practical things, evidenced by the level of talent they would need to perfect all their jokes. Percy is just the opposite. He's extremely dedicated to academics and gets top grades, but he's also the only Weasley child (with the possible exception of Bill) who never plays Quidditch. Perhaps because he lives in his head and is a klutz at all things physical? I can see something like Apparations not coming easily to him. Plus, Percy's such a perfectionist that it would be just like him to spend a good long time preparing before he even attempts the Apparations test--perhaps he spent the entire summer between his sixth and seventh year learning and took the test the next summer.

In keeping with JK's estimate, I think Bill really is two years older than Charlie. Or--and I like this even better--he may be ALMOST two years older but only one school year ahead. This would happen if, say, Bill's birthday is in October and Charlie's in August. That would make Bill five years ahead of Percy, seven years ahead of the twins, nine years ahead of Ron, and ten years ahead of Ginny. Ginny wouldn't be able to remember when Bill started at Hogwarts, but she would remember him being there. Plus, if Bill is five years ahead of Percy, it really would be five years (plus some months) since he'd been a student at Hogwarts when he came back in GoF. Also, he'd be just about six years older than Fleur, which is well within dating range even by Muggle standards.

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zelmia - Aug 3, 2004 12:08 am (#131 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Actually, Charlie failed his first Apparation test as well. (See GF) So it doesn't necessarily mean anything that Percy failed his the first time -- other than it's a very difficult exam.

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Amilia Smith - Aug 4, 2004 7:17 pm (#132 of 159)

If Percy had failed his test the first time, the twins would have mentioned it. They never miss an oportunity to get a rise out of Percy. I like your idea, Maddest Dragon, that Percy saw Charlie fail his first exam, so then took an extra summer studying to make sure he didn't fail as well.

While we don't know if Bill played Quidditch for Gryfindor or not, he does play. After the World Cup, Harry, Ron, Fred, George, Charlie and Bill play a game of three on three.

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zelmia - Aug 4, 2004 11:33 pm (#133 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
I stand corrected. "Percy only passed 2 weeks ago... been Apparating downstairs every morning just to prove he can..."
Still, Charlie did fail his the first time.

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Paulus Maximus - Aug 6, 2004 9:31 pm (#134 of 159)

Ginny had been looking forward to Hogwarts ever since Bill went... and she would have been less than a year old when Bill went...

Very interesting...

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zelmia - Aug 7, 2004 6:51 pm (#135 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Yes, but she would have been old enough to remember him being the only sibling at school - at the very least in the latter part of his first or second year. So her remark still makes sense.

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Maddest Dragon - Aug 13, 2004 5:48 pm (#136 of 159)

Well, I've looked over the books again, and I think it's equally possible (to what I said in post #130) that Charlie was only three school years ahead of Percy. What got me thinking like that is Bill's remark about it being five years since he was at Hogwarts--and, when I double checked, I realized that it's June when he comes to watch Harry. So, if he's almost two years older than Charlie but only one school year ahead, and Charlie's three years ahead of Percy (but maybe closer to two years older), then it's literally five years since he (Bill) graduated.

Looking at it this way, Oliver Wood became team captain the year Harry joined. I'd thought he was probably captain a little longer--but, really, there's no reason why he couldn't have just become captain. In this scenario, Charlie and at least one of the Chasers have just left Hogwarts at the beginning of PS/SS. Wood isn't very optomistic about finding a good Seeker--perhaps he's already held tryouts but didn't offer anyone the position because everyone who tried was terrible. Or perhaps he's just been moaning to McGonnagall, something like, "How will we ever find a good Seeker? No one could ever be anywhere near as good as Charlie." The team hasn't been in good shape anyway; the last time they won the Cup was Charlie's third year. What I speculated earlier, about Charlie catching the Snitch when Gryffindor couldn't possibly win, still happened--but it might've happened only the year before, when they got "flattened by Slytherin." If it did, the twins were on the team at the time.

Katie Bell also joined the Gryffindor team the same year as Harry. In OotP, Ginny says something like, "I think I'll go out for Chaser next year. Alicia and Angelina are leaving." Since she doesn't mention Katie, we can assume that Katie's staying, and is therefore only a year ahead of Harry. If she was in second year when he was in first, then that's the first year she could've played. For all we know, Angelina and/or Alicia might have joined that year, too.

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Tomoé - Sep 7, 2004 2:41 pm (#137 of 159)

Back in business
'Alicia Spinnet, a good find of Oliver Wood's, last year only a reserve' (PS ch.11 p.137)

Alicia was the reserve, not Katie.

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Maddest Dragon - Sep 7, 2004 2:52 pm (#138 of 159)

Who said anything about Katie being a reserve? What I said was that Katie couldn't have joined the team before Harry's first year, because she's evidently only one year ahead of Harry.

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Tomoé - Sep 7, 2004 3:28 pm (#139 of 159)

Back in business
Oh, sorry, I read too fast once again. -_-

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zelmia - Sep 7, 2004 9:56 pm (#140 of 159)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
I have a hard time understanding why the ages of Bill and Charlie are still in question. Rowling answered this outright in a very recent interview. Why are people still, after 130+ posts, having such a difficult time coming to terms with it?

There are only 3 possible explanations for Charlie's absence at Hogwarts Harry's (and Ron's) first year:
1) He'd just "graduated" - either the summer term before Ron and Harry started (meaning June '91) or even the the year before.
2) He'd left school altogether, having come of age.
3) He'd left Hogwarts to go study dragons in Romania.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Sep 9, 2004 10:15 am (#141 of 159)

Hi everyone there is a new essay up on the Lexicon regarding Bill and Charlie's ages.

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El Cronista de Salem - Oct 4, 2004 11:08 am (#142 of 159)

From JKRowling.com:

You said recently that Charlie was two years older than Percy. If that's so, he would have been the Seeker in Harry's first year. Can you clarify his and Bill's ages for us? I knew I'd messed up that question the moment I had answered it, but web chats move fast and I wanted to keep going to get through as many questions as I could. Bill is two years older than Charlie, who is three years older than Percy, who is two years older than Fred and George, who are two years older than Ron, who is a year older than Ginny. Sorry. Maths is not my strong suit (though it's better than my geography, as those who have found the most recent Easter Eggs might already know).

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Loopy Lupin - Oct 4, 2004 2:23 pm (#143 of 159)

All the machinations people have gone through trying to make Charlie's age work as JKR originally stated always gave me a headache. But, before there is a clamor to shut this thread down behind "Is Lupin Really James Potter" (and a most noble resting place that theory does, indeed, deserve), let me throw out a question: Does the new math work now? Or is there still a glitch JKR hasn't seen yet?

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Nathan Zimmermann - Oct 4, 2004 10:46 pm (#144 of 159)

Percy graduated Hogwarts in June 1994, this means that he started at Hogwarts in September 1987 and was born in 1976.

According to this last statement from J.K. Rowling, Charlie is three years older than Percy meaning he graduated in June 1991 three years before Percy this indicates that Charlie started at Hogwarts in September 1984 and was born in 1973.

Bill is two years older than Charlie this means that he graduated in June 1989 two years before Charlie which, indicates that he started at Hogwarts in September 1982 and was born in 1971.

This new information means that Bill was at most 24 years old at beginning of Order of the Phoenix. Charlie was at most 22 years old at the beginning of Order of the Phoenix, and Percy was at most 19 years old at the beginning of of Order of the Phoenix.

When taken with all the textual evidence I think this is the most likely the correct answer. At the very least it is by far the most feasible answer for the following reasons.

First, this new information removes the extraordinarily wide age diifference between Charlie and Percy that has been previously postulated and discussed.

Second, this new statement lessens the age diference between Bill and Fleur making their relationship more plausible.

Third, it also reinforces the fact that Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred, and George were contemporaries of Nymphadora Tonks in school.

Best Regards, Nathan

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Czarina II - Oct 5, 2004 5:07 am (#145 of 159)

Charlie and Tonks were in the same year, though apparently not in the same House.

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Loopy Lupin - Oct 5, 2004 5:37 am (#146 of 159)

Why is is apparent that Tonks and Charlie were not in the same house?

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Czarina II - Oct 5, 2004 2:58 pm (#147 of 159)

Didn't Tonks say that she wasn't in Gryffindor? And Charlie would have had to be in Gryffindor in order for Ron to say that all of his brothers were there.

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haymoni - Oct 6, 2004 10:04 am (#148 of 159)

I just remember her saying that her Head of House didn't think she had what it took to be a Prefect.

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S.E. Jones - Oct 18, 2004 11:44 pm (#149 of 159)

Let it snow!
We're not told Tonk's house....

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Maddest Dragon - Oct 24, 2004 9:03 pm (#150 of 159)

You're right, we're not told Tonks's House. But I thought she was probably a Gryffindor (didn't most people?). She seems to have Gryffindor traits: "their daring, nerve, and chivalry set Gryffindors apart." And maybe she didn't have what it took to be a prefect. Didn't she say she was something of a troublemaker in school? In any case, her personality suggests that she would've been a willing rule breaker as a teenager.

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Paulus Maximus - Oct 25, 2004 10:35 am (#151 of 159)

And Ron isn't a rule breaker?

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The One - Oct 28, 2004 11:01 am (#152 of 159)

Open minded sceptic
And Ron isn't a rule breaker?

How many rules have he broken? Not that many, really, except when promted by others.

Hermione on the other hand, breaks rules whenever it suits her.

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Paulus Maximus - Oct 28, 2004 11:19 am (#153 of 159)

And Hermione was a Prefect, just like Ron.

And undoubtedly chosen by the same people, on the same criteria, as Ron was.

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The One - Oct 28, 2004 11:29 am (#154 of 159)

Open minded sceptic
That's true. I did not contradict your point that rule breakers may be Prefects, just peoples perception of Ron as a rule breaker. (Which makes it a bit OT)

Back on topic. Fred and George are rulebreakers, very public so, and neither of them was prefects. Perhaps Tonks shared some qualities with them?

But unlike the twins she must have achieved good marks, otherwise she would not have been accepted for Auror training.

EDIT I just discovered that this was not the Tonks thread after all....

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Paulus Maximus - Oct 28, 2004 10:40 pm (#155 of 159)

"Fred and George are rulebreakers, very public so, and neither of them was prefects. Perhaps Tonks shared some qualities with them?"

Perhaps, but so did Ron and Hermione.

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Tomoé - Nov 4, 2004 4:40 pm (#156 of 159)

Back in business
Ron and Hermione did help to save the school from Voldemort, Slytherin's basilisk, saved buckbeak and help a innocent (well, as innocent as Sirius can be ^_^) man to escape a fate worst than death (did they do something to help the scholl in GoF?). The twins have done nothing of the like, nor the marauders (between years 1 to 4 of course), nor Tonks.

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Elanor - Nov 28, 2004 11:25 pm (#157 of 159)

Happy birthday Bill!

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Sir Tornado - Nov 29, 2004 2:47 am (#158 of 159)

Rebel without a cause.
Happy Birthday Bill. Bill turns 33 today.

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Kip Carter - Nov 29, 2004 11:36 am (#159 of 159)

co-Host with Steve on the Lexicon Forum, but he has the final say as the Owner!
I have closed this thread out and moved it to the Archive folder where our editors will eventually have fun with it. JKR has answered this question on her site.
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