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Russian Library Cancels Harry Potter Quiz Over Concerns About ‘Dangerous Potions’


A library in Novosibirsk has canceled a quiz about the Harry Potter books, following a reader’s complaint that the quiz included questions that might encourage children to attempt the production of certain potions. According to local news website NGS, the concerned reader claimed the questions about potions posed a public danger.

The library has reportedly offered the quiz two years in a row, becoming a popular attraction among local children and adults. The quiz was available online and in person at the library. Patrons who answered all questions correctly were rewarded with a special diploma.

The library’s director told NGS that one of the reasons for canceling the quiz this year was a complaint by a woman worried that children “might become ill,” if they tried to cook the potions described in J. K. Rowling’s books.

“Nobody has ever cooked anything, so far,” the director said, “but she drew our attention to the possibility that a child might get it in their head to try.”

One library employee told NGS that that Harry Potter competition had become a major attraction, even drawing children from neighboring towns to come participate.

If Novosibirsk’s Harry Potter fans hope to reinstate this year’s library contest, they’ll need to get their hands on some mistletoe berries, Valerian sprigs, and Lethe river water. With that — and “2 measures of standard ingredient” — they could cook up a batch of “Forgetfulness Potion” and maybe use it to take the adults’ minds off the dangers of quizzes.

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