Hufflepuffs are known to be hard-workers, and throughout the Fantastic Beasts series, it was extremely exciting to step behind the curtain (or inside the case!) of a Magizoologist and the work that they do. For Newt, this meant looking after a menagerie of magical creatures at all times, researching their magical properties and travelling around the world in search of more. Newt’s extensive knowledge would, of course, lead to the famous Hogwarts textbook, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, but his interest in magical creatures was also hugely beneficial during the fight against Grindelwald. For example, Newt used his Thunderbird, Frank, to create a storm across New York dispersing a memory potion to stop an entire city of No Majs remembering the wizarding world. Newt’s Niffler is the one that manages to procure Dumbledore and Grindelwald’s vial! And Newt’s knowledge of the Qilin proved vital in the struggle against Grindelwald’s ascent to power.
Because Newt always treated magical creatures the same as humans, this open-minded attitude gave him extra powers to stand in front of a terribly Dark wizard, and a deeper understanding of how to conquer evil.
Helga Hufflepuff, the founder of Hufflepuff house, once said she would teach any Hogwarts student, and ‘treat them just the same’. This unprejudiced viewpoint seemed to shine through Hufflepuff house, and certainly did inside Newt Scamander. “Imperfect understanding is often more dangerous than ignorance,” he once said. Whether it was befriending Jacob the No-Maj in a time when relations between wizards and non-magical people was strictly prohibited, or his refusal to shy away from the bigger, more scarier magical creatures, Newt was emboldened as a character by his acceptance of everyone. Leta Lestrange even once observed that Newt “never met a monster he couldn’t love”.
Of course, we’re not saying all Hufflepuffs were perfectly accepting: Ernie Macmillan certainly liked to have a gossip during Harry Potter’s time at Hogwarts!
While Ravenclaws may have the reputation as the bookish ones, Newt Scamander was as learned as he was kindly. Being exceptionally well-travelled taught Newt a lot about the world, alongside the magical creatures he met along the way. His resourcefulness put him in an excellent position to solve mysteries throughout the Fantastic Beasts series, such as figuring out the true identity of Percival Graves or that Jacob was under magical enchantments. Newt’s lateral thinking got his friends out of tight spots, such as saving Tina from execution, or escaping from sticky situations via Portkeys. For someone who deals with dangerous magical creatures a lot, you certainly have to be quick-thinking – something Newt applied to all walks of life.
When you think of a traditional ‘hero’ of a story, you may picture a warrior with a sword, or a caped crusader. But all Newt Scamander needed was a nice coat and an enchanted suitcase to get by. Many heroes may be adept fighters or capable of bravery beyond comprehension, but kindness is also a deeply important trait any true hero must have. A character like Credence was in dire need of kindness, which Newt was able to provide, for example. And Newt carried this kindness with him through every challenge he faced – perhaps getting results others could not. No wonder Dumbledore wanted him on his team so dearly.
You can read more about Newt’s uniqueness as a hero here.
You may remember the Sorting Hat’s verse about Hufflepuffs being just and loyal, patient and true, and unafraid of toil. In Newt’s line of work, being a Magizoologist is a very active role, that requires a lot of extraneous activity (sometimes even performing interesting dances…) as well as knowing the academic side of things. All of this hard work that Newt put into looking after his creatures may well have helped him across his adventures in Fantastic Beasts, such as being adept at duelling, charmwork and running away from all manner of terrifying things.
Hufflepuffs may have a reputation as being gentle, but Newt Scamander proved that there is so much more to the Hogwarts house than that.