Journey Beyond the Screen

Lacock Abbey

England: Harry PotterLacock Abbey: The Mirror of Erised

Location

Lacock Abbey is an 800 year-old nunnery that later became home to a Tudor family. In the 19th century, the building was owned by the Talbots, whose most famous member, William Henry Fox Talbot (1800-77), took the world's first photographic negative in the South Gallery.

Visitors can get a glimpse of Talbot's pioneering work in his study, which has been beautifully preserved.

Key Scenes

The abbey's Chapter House is where Harry Potter looks into the Mirror of Erised in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. When spelled backwards, "Erised" reads "desire". As Harry looks into the mirror, he sees his parents and relatives.

The Chapter House, where Harry stumbles uipon the Mirror of Erised

The Chapter House, where Harry stumbles uipon the Mirror of Erised

Other parts filmed at Lacock Abbey include Professor Quirrell’s Defence Against the Dark Arts classroom with its giant cauldron (see main image above), which was set in the abbey's Warming Room, and Professor Severus Snape's Potions classroom, held in the Sacristy.

The cloister's corridors also stood in for Hogwarts in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

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