Who wouldn’t want to be a Weasley? Loud, loving and full of laughter, we take a look at the chapter when we fell in love with them as a family… and we suspect it was the moment Harry did too.

Many Weasley family members were there right from the beginning of the story – Ron was one of Harry’s best friends. Fred and George made us belly laugh pretty much from the moment we saw them. Mrs Weasley, after only meeting Harry once, sent him homemade Christmas presents! And Percy... well he showed us just how important the role of a Prefect was at Hogwarts. It’s safe to say that in Philosopher’s Stone the Weasleys made their mark as individuals. Yet, it wasn’t until Chamber of Secrets that we saw them all together as a family unit – and what a family. Warm and welcoming, they swiftly became firm favourites of ours.

Now we have to admit that it was difficult to pinpoint just one excellent Weasley family moment – there have been many. From Mrs Weasley presenting Harry with her brother’s watch when he came of age to spending a wizarding Christmas at The Burrow to Bill and Fleur’s wedding day (without the disruption at the end), we were hard-pressed to pick just one chapter. Yet, we kept circling back to the moment in Chamber of Secrets when Harry went to their house for the very first time and we think you’ll understand why...

'The Burrow'

‘Touchdown!’ said Fred as, with a slight bump, they hit the ground. They had landed next to a tumbledown garage in a small yard and Harry looked out for the first time at Ron’s house. It looked as though it had once been a large stone pigsty, but extra rooms had been added here and there until it was several storeys high and so crooked it looked as though it was held up by magic (which, Harry reminded himself, it probably was). Four or five chimneys were perched on top of the red roof. A lop-sided sign stuck in the ground near the entrance read ‘The Burrow’. Round the front door lay a jumble of wellington boots and a very rusty cauldron. Several fat brown chickens were pecking their way around the yard. ‘It’s not much,’ said Ron. ‘It’s brilliant,’ said Harry happily, thinking of Privet Drive.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

After an incident with a house-elf and Aunt Petunia’s pudding of sugared violets, things had become pretty much unbearable for Harry at Privet Drive. Confined to his room and fed through a cat-flap installed in his bedroom door, he felt like a prisoner. When Ron, Fred, George and a flying Ford Anglia prized the bars off his bedroom window and came to his rescue we knew things could only get better for him… and they certainly did.

After a flight back to the village Ottery St Catchpole, Harry saw The Burrow for the very first time and it couldn’t have been more different than that of the too-clean, characterless and suffocating Privet Drive. Ramshackle and clearly held together by magic, it was obviously a loving family home – something that Harry desperately needed.

Not only did we see some familiar faces like Mrs Weasley and Ginny again, but we also met Mr Weasley – another wizard who would become a father figure to Harry. But most importantly, we got to witness the Weasley family in their element. Their in-jokes, their teasing (Mrs Weasley’s crush on Gilderoy Lockhart), their bickering (well if you are going to fly a car illegally...), it was exactly the opposite of Harry’s experience growing up.

It was the very first time that Harry was also able to get stuck into life in a wizarding family. And after a hearty breakfast, he got to partake in wizarding chores like de-gnoming the garden. He saw what it was like to live in a house where magic was the norm. In short, Harry got to experience an entirely different type of homelife.

Why it matters

‘Beds empty! No note! Car gone ... could have crashed ... out of my mind with worry ... did you care? ... never, as long as I’ve lived ... you wait until your father gets home, we never had trouble like this from Bill or Charlie or Percy ...’ ‘Perfect Percy,’ muttered Fred. ‘YOU COULD DO WITH TAKING A LEAF OUT OF PERCY’S BOOK!’ yelled Mrs Weasley, prodding a finger in Fred’s chest. ‘You could have died, you could have been seen, you could have lost your father his job –’ It seemed to go on for hours. Mrs Weasley had shouted herself hoarse before she turned on Harry, who backed away. ‘I’m very pleased to see you, Harry, dear,’ she said, ‘Come in and have some breakfast.’
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

What really made us fall in love with the Weasley family, was the welcome Harry received. The Dursleys never made Harry feel like he was wanted or that he belonged. He was the permanent outsider – barely tolerated, ignored where possible and treated terribly when acknowledged. In this chapter, despite the fact she was furious with her sons, Mrs Weasley made him feel immediately welcome. It was like she was expecting him, and the offer of breakfast showed that there was always room for him at their table. This was something Harry wasn’t used to, and her acceptance showed him how he should be treated by a loving family.

This also marked the start of Harry’s long and happy relationship with the family as a whole. Yes, Ron had been his best friend but soon every member of the family became, well, family. For all intents and purposes, he was a Weasley. He was welcome during the holidays. He played Quidditch in their orchard. The family fought for him and protected him. Arthur Weasley took him to his Ministry hearing. Molly and Bill came to support him as family before the third task of the Triwizard tournament. He fell in love and started a family with Ginny – we could go on and on. And you could say it all began here in Chamber of Secrets when he was officially welcomed into the family home.

But Harry, grinning widely, said, ‘This is the best house I’ve ever been in.’
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

We had to finish on Harry’s comment at the end of the chapter – it sums everything up really. Before this, the only place that Harry had felt truly happy was Hogwarts. Now Harry had another place where he could feel safe and loved and it was all thanks to the Weasleys.

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