May 27, 2022

Pop Culture Meets National Library of Medicine Historical Collections: Harry Potter’s World

From the “NLM Circulating Now” Blog

In 1997, 10-year-old Harry Potter waved his wand for the first time and filled the minds of readers with magic and adventure. Now, in 2017, the National Library of Medicine’s History of Medicine Division celebrates the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter’s publication with a special display complete with rare books from the 15th- and 16th-centuries, a six-banner traveling exhibition, public programming, and a few fun props


In 2007, the National Library of Medicine’s Exhibition Program launched its exhibition Do Mandrakes Really Scream? Magic and Medicine in Harry Potter and in 2009 revised that exhibition into Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine. The exhibition merges the fictional wizarding series with the History of Medicine Division’s rare books collection to explore how many of the characters, themes, plants, and creatures in Rowling’s stories are based in history, medicine, or magical lore.

Now, in 2017, the online exhibition features an updated look and additional content in the exhibition’s new digital gallery.

Read the Complete Article (Incl. Multiple Images)

Direct to NLM’s Harry Potter’s World Digital Gallery

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.