Harry Potter Documentary Reveals The Origins Of The Deathly Hallows Symbol

Since completing the Harry Potter novels in 2007, J.K. Rowling has continued to provide fans with insight and history of the wizarding world. Through the likes of Pottermore, follow-ups like The Cursed Child, and spin-offs such as Fantastic Beasts, we've not been short of magical material. 

Now in a documentary by the BBC, the author has delved into the origins of the Deathly Hallows symbol. The iconography of the film and books has become hugely important to fans, with many taking to getting their favorite as a tattoo. 

(via giphy)

J.K. Rowling acknowledged that subconsciously she believes that she adopted similarities to the Masonic symbol. This was because she'd been watching John Huston's 1975 movie The Man Who Would Be King, starring Sean Connery, Michael Caine and Christopher Plummer, at the time of her mother's death. 

"The Masonic symbol is very important in that movie. And it was literally 20 years later that I looked at the sign of the Deathly Hallows and realized how similar they were."

While the Deathly Hallows symbol represents the Elder Wand, the Resurrection Stone and the Cloak of Invisibility, the symbol combines the Masonic Square and Compasses into a triangular shape. 

Sadly it seems that the death of her mother had a lasting effect on the way that Rowling wrote the series, and this is perhaps why she latched onto this iconography she'd seen in the movie. In the documentary she continues by saying:

"When I saw the movie again and saw the Masonic symbol, I went cold all over and I thought, 'Is that why the Hallows symbol is what it is?'

And I've got a feeling that, on some deep, subconscious level, they are connected. So I feel as though I worked my way back over 20 years to that night, because the Potter series is hugely about loss, and – I've said this before – if my mother hadn't died I think the stories would be utterly different and not what they are."

You can catch Harry Potter: A History of Magic on BBC iPlayer now and you can also visit the exhibition of the same name at the British Library now until 28 February 2018.