Project Analysis

Speaker Social Class Total Words Spoken In Corpus Average Words Per Sentence Vocabulary Density Most Frequently Used Words
Harry Potter Half-Blood 16,525 5.9 0.142 Know (126), Sir (115), Hermione (98), Just (88), Think 81)
Weasley Family (Molly, Arthur, Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred, George, Ron, Ginny) Pure-Blood 12,576 6.1 0.185 Harry (178), Know (79), It’s (67), Got (66), Think (61)
Hermione Muggle-Born 9,919 6.7 0.208 Harry (200), Know (63), Ron (51), Just (49), It’s (48)
Malfoy Family (Lucious, Narcissa, Draco) Pure-Blood 2,801 7.4 0.321 Potter (39), Harry (15), Lord (14), Know (12), Weasley (12)
Argus Filch & Arabella Figg Squibs 376 6.0 0.590 I’ll (5), You’re (5), Potter (4), Got (3), It’s (3)

Important Terminology


Vocabulary Density: Vocabulary density is the ratio in which new words are presented throughout a document. In simpler terms, ‘How often do you read a common word in their list of speeches before reaching a newly introduced word’? A lower density ratio represents stronger speech, while a higher density ratio represents a weaker speech.)

Social Class

Pure-Blood: Wizards or witches that come from a strictly pure wizarding blood line.

Half-Blood: a wizard or witch who is born with one muggle-born parent and one pure blood parent.

Muggle-Born: a wizard or witch that is born into a family of muggles.

Squib: classified as a child who is born into a family of wizards, but does not have any magical abilities. Although they are similar to muggles, in the sense that they do not carry any magical powers, they are able to be present in the wizarding world and witnesses to acts of magic.

Frequently Used Words in Malfoy Speeches

  1. Potter (49)
  2. Harry (15)
  3. Lord (14)
  4. Know (12)
  5. Weasley (12)

After analyzing the speeches made by the Malfoy Family, and looking at their most frequent words, it is obvious who they surround themselves with—if the audience is familiar with the Harry Potter Universe. Their third most frequently used word is “Lord,” referring to Lord Voldemort. Consequently, if the audience is aware that the Malfoy Family consists of Death Eaters (faithful followers of Voldemort), then it makes sense that the two most frequent words are “Potter” an “Harry.” This is largely due to Death Eaters wanting Harry Potter dead, per Voldemort’s wish, and thus making them obsessed with Harry.

Direct Link to Malfoy Family Speeches in Voyant

Frequently Used Words in Weasley Family Speeches

  1. Harry (178)
  2. Know (79)
  3. It’s (67)
  4. Got (66)
  5. Think (61)

The Weasley family is a unique situation in regards to the social class of the Harry Potter World. While they are a pure-blood family, similar to the Malfoy family, they are much kinder during interactions with others. Additionally, while they are poorer than other pure-bloods, they are still grateful for what they have. This is a great distinguishing factor between the Weasley family and the Malfoy Family.

Tying this into the Textanalysis of the individual characters, the Weasley family often uses common words, mostly as slang, in the English language compared to the Malfoy’s who use nouns and dark, descriptive adjectives. However, despite the Weasley’s use of basic vocabulary in their speech, they have a vocabulary density that is slightly higher than Harry’s vocabulary density. (Vocabulary density is the ratio in which new words are presented throughout a document. In simpler terms, ‘How often do you read a common word in their list of speeches before reaching a newly introduced word’?) This may be a result of the family needing to “make-up” for their social class, which appears to be lower than pure-blood status due to their lower financial abilities and how they treat others with kindness with disregard to social class.

Direct Link to Weasley Family Speeches on Voyant

Comparison of Language Between the Malfoys and the Weasleys

AntConc concordance of the term don't in the Weasley and Malfoy Speeches

Interestingly enough, both the Malfoys and the Weasleys frequently used the word “don’t”. After taking a look at the context in which the term was used, it should be noted that the Malfoys use the word much differently than the Weasleys. The Malfoys tend to use the word with brute force—demanding things as a way to show authority. This does not come to a surprise since they are seen as very snobby, harsh, and inconsiderate towards others.

On the other hand, the Weasleys tended to use “don’t” in a more positive manner. Most of the context seen above can be attributed to the family showing their lack of knowledge about something or their use of the term in a very casual way when speaking with others.

AntConc concordance of the term bloody in the Weasley and Malfoy Speeches

If you are a fan of Harry Potter, you may know that the Weasleys say “bloody” a lot. I thought it would be interesting to look at the context of the word as the British use of the word is slightly different than the American use. Consequently, I found that the word was used as an adjective by both the Malfoys and the Weasleys. However, there were great variations of the term between the two families.

Both families have a very different view of the term and since social class is highly important in the films, as it is based on blood type, it comes to no surprise that there is a strong push and pull with this term between the two families that contrast the most. The interpretation of this term, from both families, is a great indication of how they are almost in different social classes, despite both families being pureblood. After viewing the concordance of the term between both families, the Weasleys did not use the term negatively in any context, which reflects their good nature and how they treat nearly everyone with the same kindness, even Hermione who is a muggle-born witch. On the other hand, by only seeing the term “Mudblood” within the Malfoy’s concordance, it reflects their evil nature towards other families that are not like them. The family truly embodies the stereotypical pure-blood family that looks down upon anyone who appears to be ‘worthless,’ whether they are actually in the same social class or not.

Frequently Used Words in Harry Potter Speeches

  1. Know (126)
  2. Sir (115)
  3. Hermione (98)
  4. Just (88)
  5. Think (81)

Strangely enough, one of the most prominent words in Harry’s list contains “know.” Despite it occurring 63 more times in Harry’s speeches than Hermione’s, it is quite the opposite. Upon context analyses, it can be seen that Harry most often uses the term “know” when asking questions or showing his lack of knowledge, rather than giving statements that represent his knowledge. This is much different than Hermione who utilizes the term in statement-based contexts.

Since Harry is a half-blood wizard, it makes sense that he is constantly asking questions to become more knowledgeable about various topics. This alone proves that he wants to succeed in the wizarding world. Despite his character being against most pure-bloods due to their attitudes and beliefs, such as the Malfoys, Harry uses his curious nature to gain more knowledge and, in a way, rise above his social class. The term “know” is a representation of his determination to prove others wrong about his social class.

Direct Link to Harry Potter's Speeches on Voyant

Frequently Used Words in Hermione Granger's Speeches

  1. Harry (200)
  2. Know (63)
  3. Ron (51)
  4. Just (49)
  5. It’s (48)

There was not much significance in the findings of Hermione’s speeches after utilizing Voyant. However, Hermione’s top three words appear to be “Harry,” “Ron,” and “Know.” Since Hermione was written to be a strong, independent, female character, she does not necessarily rely on Harry or Ron to ‘save the day.’ Nevertheless, she still relies on them for friendship and some form of emotional protection from pure-blood wizards, such as the Malfoy family. With this in mind, it makes sense that “Harry” and “Ron” are at the top of her vocabulary list.

Additionally, since Hermione is a muggle-born, she is consistently being condemned by most pure-bloods, because they believe her to be a waste of space. However, it does not appear to be a coincidence that the second most frequently used word in Hermione’s vocabulary is “know.” When first introduced to Hermione on the Hogwarts Express in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, she immediately impresses Harry and Ron by using spells they haven’t yet experienced. Situations, such as this, continue over the years and Hermione proves herself to be quite useful and powerful despite being a muggle-born witch. Therefore, through the prominence of the word “know” on her list of frequently used words, it can be supported that Hermione is way ahead of her years in knowledge, which proves that she is stronger than a great deal of purebloods at Hogwarts.

Direct Link to Hermione Granger's Speeches on Voyant

Frequently Used Words in Argus Filch and Arabella Figg's Speeches

  1. I’ll (5)
  2. You’re (5)
  3. Potter (4)
  4. Got (3)
  5. It’s (3)

Both Argus Filch, caretaker of Hogwarts’ grounds, and Arabella Figg, neighbor to the Durlseys, are one of the lowest social classes—squibs. Squibs are classified as a child who is born into a family of wizards, but does not have any magical abilities. Despite squibs being very similar to muggles, in the sense that they do not hold magical ability, they are able to be present in the wizarding world and witness the use of magic.

It is no surprise that the two characters have a fairly bland list of terms among their frequently used words, as this is a true reflection of their social class. Squibs do not have many luxuries or elaborate living-style, due to their low-class, and language appears to not be an exception of this nature.

The lack of speeches is also a strong indicator of Squibs presence in the wizarding world. Since there are not many speeches between the two well-known squibs of the series, Filch and Mrs. Figg, it is a safe conclusion that they are seen as highly unimportant and do not serve much purpose in the series.

Direct Link to Argus Filch and Arabella Figg's Speeches on Voyant