History of Medicine
In Harry Potter, all students are required to take classes in magical subjects. One of Harry's most dreaded classes is Potions, where students brew magical elixirs from a variety of carefully measured and mixed ingredients.
The making and teaching of potions occurs not only in fictional Harry Potter, but in alchemy as well. Potion-making required knowledge of chemistry, instruments, and a wide variety of ingredients and was a fundamental to the practice of alchemy. Alchemists concentrated the power of their ingredients by distilling their solutions with complicated apparatus including alembics, retorts, and, like Harry Potter, cauldrons.
The world of Harry Potter is filled with many magical creatures, including hippogriffs, nifflers, thestrals, phoenixes, dragons, and unicorns. Hogwarts students learn about these creatures in the Care of Magical Creatures class, helped along by their magical biting textbook.
The book shown here, although not alive, does talk about many magical creatures that people once believed existed. Seen here are a variety of sea-monsters that resemble a monk, a bishop, a bear, and a lion.
Since prehistoric times, plants have been used to treat ailments and illness. The characters in Harry Potter also practice the traditional art of using plants and herbs not only for medicine, but for magic, In Herbology class, Harry and his classmates learn about a variety of magical plants, their healing properties, and where to find them. In fact, Herbology helps Harry win the coveted Goblet of Fire during the Tri-Wizard Tournament in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. In the book, Harry eats gillyweed, a plant that when ingested allows a person to breathe underwater.