Muggles' Guide to Harry Potter/Characters/Buckbeak
|Muggles' Guide to Harry Potter - Character|
|Hair color||Stormy gray|
Buckbeak is Hagrid's favorite Hippogriff, a creature who has the forequarters of an eagle and the hindquarters of a horse.
Role in the Books
One of the subplots of the book involves the attempted execution of Buckbeak. Harry Potter is introduced to him and rides him; Draco Malfoy is introduced to him, insults him, and is injured by him. Draco exaggerates his injury, and, as Professor Dumbledore will not sack Rubeus Hagrid from his job as Care of Magical Creatures teacher, Lucius Malfoy, Draco's father, attempts to have Buckbeak prosecuted by the Ministry as a dangerous creature. Hagrid doesn't stand much of a chance against Lucius' eloquence, so Buckbeak is sentenced to death. At the eleventh hour and a bit, with assistance from Hermione Granger, Harry saves Buckbeak from execution, and gives him to Sirius Black, who escapes on him.
Sirius is now living at 12 Grimmauld Place, his old family home, and Buckbeak is living in an attic room there. Throughout the story, Sirius is seen carrying bags of rats up to Buckbeak, and for a while Harry is spending a lot of time with him as he retreats from dealing with other people.
With the death of Sirius, Buckbeak now has to move, and so he returns to Hagrid's care. Renamed Witherwings, so as to avoid the wrath of the Ministry, Buckbeak now lives in Hagrid's cottage. The only active part he plays in this story is near the end: as Severus Snape is escaping, Buckbeak tries to attack him, perhaps in retaliation for Severus' setting Hagrid's hut on fire.
Like any Hippogriff, Buckbeak can fly. Of necessity he has very powerful musculature in order to support this. He will use this strength to defend himself and his owner at need. We don't know whether he is proof against magic; many magical beings in the story seem to be somewhat immune to magical effects, so it would not be surprising if he was only somewhat affected by jinxes and curses.
Relationships with Other Characters
Despite his being shown as a domesticated beast of burden, like a horse, Buckbeak is seen to have loyalty much like a house pet. This may be due to Hagrid's treating him like a house pet initially. Buckbeak's primary loyalty is to Hagrid, his first and last owner (in the series). Once Buckbeak accepts Harry, there is also some loyalty, or at least willingness to take instruction, from Harry; Harry is able to ride him the day they meet, and is able to extract him from behind Hagrid's hut and ride him again on the evening of Buckbeak's scheduled execution. evening. He then accepts Sirius Black as owner, and remains loyal to him until Sirius' death, when he returns to Hagrid's care, but Harry's nominal ownership.