Harry Potter and the Writers' Museum

A rare first-edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, featuring personal anecdotes and illustrations by author J.K. Rowling, will be placed on display at Edinburgh’s Writers’ Museum.

The doorstep of the dursleys book and annotations copyright of j k rowling
The doorstep of the Dursleys, book and annotations copyright of JK Rowling

The original hardback book was annotated by J.K. Rowling in 2013 to raise money for English PEN and the author’s international charity, Lumos, which supports millions of children in orphanages around the world to return to family life.

Featuring 43 annotations, including 22 original drawings by the author, the book [pictured] includes a sketch of baby Harry asleep on the doorstep of the Dursleys; the author's thoughts on Quidditch; and the Hogwarts Crest featuring a bear rather than a badger as the Hufflepuff house mascot. It will be on display from Thursday 8 December.

Councillor Richard Lewis, Culture Convener at the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “This unique first edition features a remarkable glimpse into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. In it, J.K. Rowling opens her heart about her characters and creations and makes beautiful illustrations of magical scenes from the series.

“It is a privilege to display this book by one of the world’s most popular authors in the city’s Writers’ Museum. The historic building houses rare books and items belonging to some of Scotland’s greatest ever writers and is the perfect place to display J.K. Rowling’s classic, annotated, book. We are thankful to the private lender, J.K. Rowling and the Scottish Book Trust for their generous support.”

A public programme of family events, featuring magic and music, art, animation and storytelling, will coincide with this exciting display. This programme is part-funded by the Scottish Book Trust.

Harry Potter at the Writers’ Museum will offer visitors the opportunity to see the one-of-a-kind book opened at different, annotated, pages on set days* so that no two visits to this exhibition are the same.

Edinburgh is the world’s first UNESCO designated City of Literature and widely regarded as the home of Harry Potter. In 2008, J.K. Rowling was presented with the Edinburgh Award by the city’s Lord Provost. The award honours outstanding individuals who have made a positive impact on the city and gained national and international recognition for the Scottish Capital.

Discover the display at the Writers’ Museum for free from Thursday 8 December 2016 until Sunday 8 January 2017.

About the display

Pages will be turned to display different annotations on 14 December, 21 December and 28 December 2016.

Find the Writers’ Museum at Lady Stair’s Close, Edinburgh, EH1 2PA.
Open Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday: 10am – 5pm.
Open Sunday: 12pm – 5pm.

Accompanying programme of family events

Enter our magical world at the Writers’ Museum this festive season.....

Fairytale Music

Saturday 10 December and Friday 30 December, 2 - 4pm

A unique musical performance with some very special instruments. We are delighted to present an opportunity to hear magical duet music performed on two special violins crafted in 2011 from the wood of an old sycamore tree which stood in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's childhood garden. An enchanted recital by gifted Edinburgh violinist brothers, Daniel and Jakob Dalland, with pieces to include the world premier of 'The Cottingley Fairies', a violin duet composed especially for this occasion by Daniel Dalland for the two Conan Doyle violins. These are drop in performance sessions, booking is not necessary.

Magic Workshops (wands not necessary)

Sunday 18 December, 2 - 4pm

You don't need a wand to learn these magic tricks! Master Quantum teaches young enquiring minds easy-to-learn magic tricks you can take away with you to amaze your friends and family. For apprentices with real potential, there’s a sprinkling of the advanced techniques that magicians use to create a truly magical performance environment. Shows interspersed with workshops repeated every 30 mins.

To book a session, contact the museum reception on 0131 529 4901. Sessions at 2pm, 2.30pm, 3pm and 3.30pm.

Make Your Drawings Move

Thursday 29 December, 10 am - 12pm

Join us as we create ‘old school’ animated sequences. From our 2D hand-drawn sequences we will create a flipbook and construct a 19th century-inspired optical viewing device called a ‘Zoetrope’ to give our drawings the ‘illusion of life’. (Please note: modern technology will be used sparingly!). With artist Louise Wilde.

To book this session, contact the museum reception on 0131 529 4901. Age - 8yrs +.

Large Scale Animation

Thursday 29 December, 1.30 pm - 4 pm

In this exciting, fast-paced session will all work together to create a large-scale 2D charcoal-drawn animation with artist Louise Wilde.

To book this session, contact the museum reception on 0131 529 4901. Age - 8yrs +

Please note this event is not at the Writers’ Museum. Venue: City Art Centre.

Enchanted Forests

Saturday 7 January, 10.30am - 12.30pm and 1.30pm - 3.30pm

Creative Art Sessions

Create a magical forest from beautiful papers and textured materials and hide away lots of mysterious creatures amongst the trees. Watch out for the centaurs, unicorns and giants! With artist Tessa Asquith-Lamb. These are drop in sessions, booking is not necessary. All events are free but places are limited, so please book in advance where indicated. Please note that the large scale animation workshop on the afternoon of 29 December will take place at the City Art Centre. All other events take place on the ground floor of the Writers’ Museum.

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