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warning: minor minor spoilers for Harry Potter book 3 after first paragraph; major spoilers after second paragraph!

In J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series, Professor Remus Lupin is the Defense against the Dark Arts teacher in Harry's third year (book 3). After the disappointments of Professors Quirrel and Lockhart in the previous two years, Professor Lupin is a welcome relief. For one thing, he knows what he's doing and can give the classes real hands-on experience with Defense against the Dark Arts. For another, he's just a nice guy, and Harry immediately finds him to be a good, trustworthy teacher.

One of Professor Lupin's lessons is defense against boggarts, shape-changing entities that take on the shape of whatever they think will most scare the person they see. Using a real boggart, Professor Lupin teaches his class to think of something funny when they see the boggart, which will make the creature change its shape so that it will no longer be scary. This defense works well, and when Lupin has each student confront the boggart separately, some of them manage to defeat it on their first try.

However, when it is Harry's turn, the boggart turns into a Dementor, an almost lifeless thing that feeds off the misery of others by enhancing their most wretched memories. Confronted with the image of such a creature, Harry is unable to defend himself and Professor Lupin must come to his aid. Lupin thinks that Harry is so affected by Dementors because he has extremely painful memories, those of his parents' deaths.

Professor Lupin decides to help Harry defend himself against real Dementors in case he should encounter one again (he first saw one when on the Hogwarts Express) and works with him after hours. Lupin decides to use a boggart again; he tells Harry that when it transforms into the shape of a Dementor upon seeing him, Harry's goal is to produce a Patronus with his wand, which will protect him from the Dementor. (for more details, see Patronus, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and Dementor)

There is one more very important detail about Professor Remus Lupin: he's a werewolf. Yes, that's right, every time there is a full moon, Lupin transforms into a ravenous, violent wolf. To protect other students, when Lupin was a student at Hogwarts, Headmaster Albus Dumbledore created a place where he could go when he was about to transform where he wouldn't endanger anyone else: the Shrieking Shack.

In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, there is an encounter here which leads to several important developments in the Harry Potter story (for more details, see Sirius Black and Peter Pettigrew). In the end, Professor Lupin must leave Hogwarts because Dumbledore knows that parents will object strongly to their students being taught by a werewolf.

Professor Lupin is something of a novelty in that he is the only Defence Against the Dark Arts Teacher to appear willing or likely to ever return to Hogwarts. We are told this towards the end of Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire when Professor Dumbledore instructs Sirius Black to 'alert the Old Crowd' including Remus Lupin, Arabella Figg and Mundingus Fletcher. As he was arguably Harry's favourite teacher at Hogwarts and much liked by Readers Lupin's presence in the as yet Unpublished Harry Potter And The Order Of Phoenixwould be a welcome and popular Plot Development.

Lupin is probably the most likely Dark Arts teacher to make an appearance in future volumes of Harry Potter. First Year Teacher Professor Quirinus Quirrel(played by Ian Hart was a host body for Lord Voldemort and apparently died upon disentegrating when he touched Harry. Second Years' Gilderoy Lockhart (played by Kenneth Branagh in Chamber Of Secrets) fell foul of his own Obliviate memory charm and is Amnesiac. Lupin resigned his post after longtime rival Professor Snape revealed to Slytherin students Lupin - as the english translation from Latin of his surname suggests- was a Werewolf. Fourth Years' Mad Eye Moody was only employed for one year "as a favour to Dumbledore" (is there a Temp Agency in Diagon Alley?) but spent most of his tenure locked in a chest with an evil impostor (one Barty Crouch) assuming his identity to kill Harry.

It is fair to say that none of the above will be taking their old jobs back and Lupin, being friends with Harry's late father (James Potter) and fugitive Godfather (Sirius Black) has a vested interest in Harry's safety. Wether or not Lupin turns up in Harry Potter books to come will remain the topic of discussion among Potter fans and will be a development watched with keen interest

Remus John Lupin is a character in the Harry Potter book series by J. K. Rowling. Warning! Spoilers from book 3-5 in this node!


Biography until year 1993

Remus Lupin was born in 1959. He is half-blood, meaning that one of his parents is either muggle or muggle-born. When he was a young child he was bitten by a werewolf and became a werewolf himself.

Wizards and witches are normally very afraid of werewolves, thus Lupin's parents thought he won't be accepted into Hogwarts schoold for witchcraft and wizardry by the headmaster then, Professor Dippet.

But there was hope for Lupin when Albus Dumbledore became headmaster. Dumbledore accepted Remus to Hogwarts, but took certain steps of precaution. He built the Shrieking Shack in the town of Hogsmead, and dug a tunnel into there from Hogwarts. On the enterance of the tunnel he planted the Womping Willow, a highly violent tree. According to the plan, every month, when Lupin will become a werewolf, he will go into the shrieking shack and stay there until he returns to his human form.

In September, 1970 Remus entered Hogwarts. In Hogwarts, Remus met three good friends: James Potter, Sirius Black and Peter Pettigrew. The four get into mischief, very much like Fred and George Weasley. Together they create the marauder's map.

All this time Lupin keeps the fact that he is a werewolf secret, even from his friends. But at last they find out about it. Remus thought that once they found out they will stop being friends with him, but instead they decided to become Animaguses - wizards who can turn into animals whenever they like.

At last, at their fifth year at Hogwarts, they achieved it. James could turn into a stag, Sirius into a dog, and Peter transformed to a rat. Every month, the four of them went to the shrieking shack under James's invisibility cloak, and in the shack transformed into animals. Werewolves are only dangerous to humans, so they were safe. James and Sirius turned into big enough animals to hold a werewolf down, and in this way they went out to nightly walkes on the Hogwarts grounds.

After graduating from Hogwarts, it was very difficult for Lupin to find a job, as most witches and wizards hate werewolves. In Voldemort's years of teror Lupin was a member of the Order of the Phoenix, a group of witches and wizards lead by Dumbledore who fought Voldemort and the Death Eaters (his followers).

In 1981 James Potter and his wife Lily were murdered by Voldemort. But when Voldemort came to murder their son, Harry, Harry was left only with a scar, and Voldemort went into hiding.

After Voldemort's defeat, the whole magical world was happy. The bad part was that they thought Sirius Black was a Death Eater. Sirius is sentenced for a lifetime in Azkaban, wizard prison.

At last, in 1993, Dumbledore hired Lupin as the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher at Hogwarts.


Events after 1993

In the summer of 1993, Sirius Black escaped from Azkaban. He was the first in to do so history. Obviously, all the wizards, even Lupin, thought he's after Harry. To keep Harry safe, Dementors, scary creatures who guard Azkaban prison, were placed at the enterances to Hogwarts.

At Hogwarts, Harry Potter is one of Lupin's students. Harry is startled to learn that Lupin used to be his dead father's friend.

In June 1994, Harry and Lupin meet Sirius Black. Sirius convinces them that the crimes he had been convicted for were actually preformed by Peter Pettigrew, their old friend, who had later become a Death Eater.

Professor Snape, one of the teachers at Hogwarts, tells the students about Lupin being a werewolf, and Lupin resigns as the parents of the students will not want a werewolf teaching their children.

When Voldemort returns in June 1995, the Order of the Phoenix is recruited and Lupin is in it again. With the death of Harry's godfather, Sirius, in June 1996, there is a good chance that in the 2 last books in the series Lupin will come closer to Harry.

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