What is enchanting about the Harry Potter universe is not the magic, although the magic is cool, it is the characters. They feel real and three-dimensional, and so we get invested in their lives.
Each Harry Potter character is flawed but trying to do their best, and motivated by forces that we can understand, even the worst of them.
Let’s dive deeper into what motivates the characters in Harry Potter by looking at their Myers-Briggs personality types (MBTI), a very Muggle way of understanding what makes people tick and what drives them.
Myers-Briggs uses a simple survey to sort people into one of 16 different personality types based on their likes and dislikes, strengths and weaknesses, interests and preferences, and compatibility with other people.
Each personality type has a name and a four-letter code that reflects a bit about their personality.
- E or I – This is extroversion, action-oriented, and energized by other people, vs introversion, thought-oriented and self-motivated.
- S or N – This depends on whether a person relies principally on sensing or intuition, with sensing people paying significant attention to the world around them and making rational decisions, while intuiting people tend to feel their way and follow their gut.
- T or F – This is thinking vs feeling, contrasting those who tend to be logical and consistent vs those who tend to follow their emotions.
- J or P – This is judging vs perceiving, with the former preferring structure and firm decision, and the latter being more flexible, adaptable, and comfortable with the unknown and inconsistency.
Depending on how these four characteristics combine in a person, they will fall into one of 16 different personality types.
|MBTI Personality Type||Characters|
|ISTJ – The Inspector||Severus Snape |
|ISTP – The Crafter||Harry Potter |
|ISFJ – The Protector||Neville Longbottom |
|ISFP – The Artist||Rubeus Hagrid |
|INFJ – The Advocate||Remus Lupin |
|INFP – The Mediator||Luna Lovegood |
|INTJ – The Architect||Lord Voldemort |
|INTP – The Thinker||Hermione Granger |
|ESTP – The Persuader||Ginny Weasley |
|ESTJ – The Director||Dolores Umbridge |
Barty Crouch Snr
|ESFP – The Performer||Fred & George Weasley |
|ESFJ – The Caregiver||Molly Weasley |
|ENFP – The Champion||Ron Weasley |
|ENFJ – The Giver||Albus Dumbledore |
|ENTP – The Debater||Alastor Moody |
|ENTJ – The Commander||Minerva McGonagall |
ISTJ MBTI – The Inspector
ISTJs are planners who can ignore distractions and focus on long-term goals. They prefer to work alone and in secret, and their methods are always responsible and realistic.
Severus Snape ISTJ MBTI
We see this ISTJ personality principally in Severus Snape’s ability to work as a double agent for the Death Eaters and the Order of the Phoenix for more than 20 years. Something that would break most people.
In the end, Snape was able to kill the only person that he was close to and sacrifice his own life for the greater good.
Inspectors also appreciate order and consistency, something that Snape shows in his role as Potion Master. He is methodical and does not stand for any foolishness. They also tend to be a bit rigid when it comes to rules and traditions.
Percy Weasley ISTJ MBTI
Percy Weasley portrays clear ISTJ personality traits. He already had a life in the Ministry of Magic planned out for himself before he started at Hogwarts. Percy chose to side with the authorities rather than his family as much to respect wizarding tradition and for personal ambition and advancement.
Rufus Scrimgeour ISTJ MBTI
Rufus Scrimgeour is another ISTJ planner, with a vision for how to protect the wizarding world from the threat of Lord Voldemort. It is a practical plan, and he is not interested in hearing anything that does not align with his idea of what is best.
ISTP MBTI – The Crafter
ISTPs have a core belief system that guides them in everything that they do, even if it means breaking the rules. They can often be seen as rebels.
Harry Potter ISTP MBTI
We see many ITSP characteristics in Harry Potter, who often breaks the rules to help the people he cares about. He is also result-oriented, liked other Crafters, and likes to solve problems rather than leave them to other people (which is one of the reasons Harry is always at the center of everything).
This personality also tends to like new experiences and be thrill-seekers, which we see in Harry in his love of flying. They also tend to be easy-going in most situations and get along with others well. But they can bottle their emotions up and become overwhelmed, as Harry does when he thinks Dumbledore doesn’t trust him and when he worries that he is being controlled by Lord Voldemort.
They don’t tend to be good at understanding the emotions of others, which is why Harry often needs Hermione to explain to him what other people are thinking.
Tina Goldstein ISTP MBTI
Tina Goldstein, the American Auror, is another ISTP governed by a moral code. We see this when she breaks the rules to track Mary Lou Barebone, and later to help Newt Scamander. She also bottles up her emotions when she thinks that Newt is engaged to someone else.
Aberforth Dumbledore ISTP MBTI
Aberforth Dumbledore is another ISTP character that does not worry about what other people think (even when he was accused of unsuitable conduct with a goat) and goes about his business. He was one of the few who was not starstruck by his brother Albus. Nevertheless, he chose to help him over the years despite the bad blood between the two.
ISFJ MBTI – The Protector
ISFJ is another personality type with a strong moral compass, and they often worry about protecting others, putting the needs of others above their own.
Neville Longbottom ISFJ MBTI
We see these ISFJ characteristics in Neville Longbottom from the beginning when he confronts his friends to prevent them from getting in trouble (and is stunned by Hermione), and certainly by the end of the series when he is leading the resistance at Hogwarts.
People with this personality tend to be very observant but say little. They also repress their emotions, as we see Neville do when he refuses to share with his friends that his parents lost their minds after being tortured by Death Eaters.
Cho Chang ISFJ MBTI
Cho Chang displays similar ISFJ personality traits in her willingness to see the best in people and stand up for them. This includes Harry when he is chosen for the Triwizard Tournament, and her friend Marietta when she betrays the DA. She also bottled up her emotions about Cedric Diggory.
Horace Slughorn ISFJ MBTI
Horace Slughorn is often described as “collecting” students, but as an ISFJ he always went out of his way to help them as well, ensuring that they had bright futures. His bravery is underrated, returning to Hogwarts under Dumbledore, staying to protect the students under Snape, and recruiting many to join the final Battle of Hogwarts.
ISFP MBTI – The Artist
ISFP personalities are kind and friendly and accept everyone for who they are. They are both generous and sensitive, which means that can be easily hurt.
Rubeus Hagrid ISFP MBTI
Hagrid perfectly fits the ISFP description of kind, friendly, and sensitive. They are easy-going people who tend to like everyone and take people as they are. As far as Hagrid is concerned, this extends to dangerous magical creatures, such as Aragog and Buckbeak.
These folk like to spend time on their own or with a small group of friends. Hagrid is happiest when he is wandering the Forbidden Forest with only Fang for company, and keeps his circle of close friends relatively small.
They tend to prefer to do rather than plan and are focused on the here and now rather than the future. This can lead to poor decisions, such as Hagrid bringing his brother Grawp to Hogwarts.
Newt Scamander ISFP MBTI
Newt Scamander is an ISFP very similar to Hagrid in that he can see the good in even the most fearsome of creatures and is a kind person who wants to help. He doesn’t like the spotlight and prefers to just work away and get things done. He also displays the trait of delaying decision-making to keep his options open, which he does the first time Dumbledore asks him to go to Paris.
Dobby ISFP MBTI
Dobby is also an Artist ISFP personality type who cares greatly about the people close to him and tends to see the best in people (except when that is nearly impossible, like Lucius Malfoy). He is happy in his day-to-day life and does not make grand plans for the future.
INFJ MBTI – The Advocate
INFJ personalities have an innate need to help others and have a natural empathy which means that they are better at understanding other people than anyone else.
Remus Lupin INFJ MBTI
Remus Lupin is compassionate and understanding of other people, just like other INFJs. He understood his friends James and Sirius better than anyone else, and he could even empathize with his old enemy Severus Snape when they worked alongside one another at Hogwarts.
They tend to be less compassionate and understanding of themselves, which means that they can often crucify themselves for things beyond their control. Remus does this to himself over being a werewolf, and the danger and stigma this could mean for his family.
INFJs tend to be idealists that want to believe the best in people. They enjoy helping others. Remus had a natural calling as a teacher and went out of his way not only to help Harry, but many of his students through difficult times.
Gellert Grindelwald INFJ MBTI
Gellert Grindelwald, while a dark wizard, was also an INFJ idealist seeking to make a better world, in his vision, for wizarding kind. He believed that he was helping wizarding kind, even if they did not want his kind of help.
Petunua Dursley INFJ MBTI
Petunia Dursley may seem uncompassionate, but she is an INFJ who had to fight her own childhood insecurities about not being a witch and being “less” than her sister to take in Harry. She tortured herself to be as normal as possible due to self-loathing.
INFP personalities are a contrast between big dreams and down-to-earth plans. This means that they are more likely to make the unlikely happen.
Luna Lovegood INFP MBTI
Luna Lovegood is a classic INFP. She seems like she has her head in the clouds, but her feet are firmly on the ground. She has the ability to see, believe, and reveal, where others only see confusion and chaos. This is why she is often the one to speak uncomfortable truths. They are highly intuitive and are good at focussing on the big picture rather than the details.
While they enjoy spending time with a select group of friends, they generally find social situations draining and re-energize by spending time on their own. Luna knows that most people think that she’s a bit peculiar, but she doesn’t let it bother her.
Sybill Trelawney INFP MBTI
As an INFP, Sybill Trelawney has her head in the clouds, but she sees more clearly than others believe. Many of her passing predictions turned out to be true. She also prefers to keep to herself, staying in her tower rather than descending to the Great Hall.
Dean Thomas INFP MBTI
Dean Thomas also displays INFP qualities. While he is a popular boy, he prefers to spend most of his time with his best friend Seamus or in artistic pursuits. When Seamus was against Harry because his mother believed the Daily Prophet, Dean was able to see the bigger picture. But he was mostly happy to let others take the lead.
INTJ MBTI – The Architect
People who have an INTJ personality are focused and driven. They believe in themselves and they rely on themselves above all others. They are slow to trust.
Lord Voldemort INTJ MBTI
Lord Voldemort portrays the strong introverted INTJ Architect trait that he prefers to work alone and keep his own counsel. He finds it hard to trust others. The young Tom Riddle even preferred to go to Diagon Alley alone rather than trust in the company of Albus Dumbledore.
They like to feel in control and don’t like anything that seems beyond their control, in the case of Lord Voldemort, death. They like to be the ones calling the shots and making the plans. INTJ people are good at putting together abstract information but can sometimes ignore important details.
They do tend to be a bit ruthless, often assuming that the ends justify the means.
Rowena Ravenclaw INTJ MBTI
Rowena Ravenclaw is another classic INTJ Architect who thought that she could control the world. She was also a literal architect, credited with coming up with the ever-changing floorplan for Hogwarts. She was ruthless in her pursuit of knowledge.
Regulus Black INTJ MBTI
Regulus Black shows the long-term planning of an INTJ. He was able to remain undercover within the Death Eaters after deciding that he did not trust Lord Voldemort. He was very good at maintaining appearances so that he could execute his plans and confided in no one.
INTP MBTI – The Thinker
People with the INTP personality are analytical thinkers who manage to make observant, data-driven decisions, but also think outside the box and be creative.
Hermione Granger INTP MBTI
Intellectual and thoughtful Hermione Granger is a classic INTP Thinker. She is incredibly good at analyzing data and using small pieces of information to create a bigger, clearer picture. This makes her a good and confident decision-maker, which is why it is Hermione who usually comes up with a plan.
They tend to surround themselves with a few good friends, rather than being outward and gregarious. We see this with Hermione, who was close with Harry and Ron, but not the other Gryffindor girls in her year. Her next closest friend was Ginny Weasley.
They like to keep their options open because they are curious and energetic. Hermione does this when she chooses to take so many electives that she needs a time turner to get to them all.
Arthur Weasley INTP MBTI
Arthur Weasley is another INTP Thinker, who was fascinated by the details of how Muggle technology worked but was also able to keep an eye on the bigger picture. This is why Arthur was often the best person for Harry to approach with a problem, because he would listen and analyze, rather than simply dismiss his concerns.
Garrick Ollivander INTP MBTI
Garrick Ollivander is another curious INTP mind who learned everything he could about wand lore and was able to make logical yet creative decisions to invent new wand combinations. He stood back from judging people, which is why he does not necessarily seem to disapprove of dark wizards.
ESTP MBTI – The Persuader
People with ESTP personalities are naturally gregarious and charismatic and find it easy to navigate life’s social situations. They are quietly confident within themselves.
Ginny Weasley ESTP MBTI
Ginny Weasley is a good example of an ESTP, someone who is naturally gregarious and attracts others to her. She has strong social skills, and rarely second-guesses herself (except when she was being controlled by the memory of Tom Riddle of course).
She is good at making quick decisions, which is why she is often the person who comes up with the best idea in a tense moment. But Ginny and other ESTPs can also be impulsive, which is why Ginny might throw a Bat-Bogey Curse without necessarily considering the consequences.
Persuaders are adaptable and resourceful, but also like a good thrill. We see this in Ginny’s passion for flying. She also makes almost as much mischief as her older brothers Fred and George, but her social skills mean that she is better at avoiding consequences.
Cedric Diggory ESTP MBTI
Cedric Diggory is also an ESTP persuader who moves through life easily with his good looks and social skills. He was adaptable and resourceful and good at making decisions under pressure. There is a reason that the Goblet of Fire considered him the Hogwarts student most prepared for the Triwizard Tournament.
Jacob Kowalski ESTP MBTI
Jacob Kowalski is another ESTP with a naturally likable personality that attracts others to him. He also appreciates risk and danger and was excited rather than terrified to discover that there was magic in the world.
ESTJ MBTI – The Director
People with an ESTJ personality like to be in command and control. But they are also among the most reliable and hardworking people that you will meet.
Dolores Umbridge ESTJ MBTI
Dolores Umbridge displays the worst qualities of an ESTJ Director personality. She is very strong in her convictions and sure of herself and can be aggressive when it comes to forcing those ideas on others. Umbridge craves leadership and will do anything to get it.
ESTJs value tradition and orthodoxy, which is one of the reasons that Umbridge favors pure-blood mentalities. It is also why she lied about her own blood lineage and pretended that a locket she found belonged to her pure-blood family.
Like many others with this personality, she is stubborn and unyielding, as seen in her classes at Hogwarts. She wanted to control everything and would release a new Educational Decree every time she identified something beyond her control.
Barty Crouch Snr ESTJ MBTI
Barty Crouch Snr is a more balanced example of an ESTJ Director personality, as he continued to be hardworking and dependable after he lost his position of power. But he did allow his Aurors to use Unforgiveable Curses when hunting Death Eaters in his fanaticism to catch them. He let his leadership ambitions tear his family apart.
Kendra Dumbledore ESTJ MBTI
Kendra Dumbledore is another ESTJ character that needs to be in control, though she did this for the altruistic cause of helping her mentally scarred daughter. But she still moved her family to a place where they were unknown and maintained a façade of secrets and lies.
ESFP MBTI – The Performer
People with the ESFP personality are the fun-loving jokers of the personality spectrum that never take life too seriously. But they are intelligent and creative and can be quite ambitious.
Fred & George Weasley ESFP MBTI
Performers are fun-loving and quite enjoy the spotlight, just like Fred and George Weasley, who couldn’t wait to put on their dragon skin suits and make a display of themselves as Weasleys Wizard Wheezes.
While ESFPs don’t tend to have the patience for book learning, they are intelligent and resourceful and extremely good at learning through doing. This makes them highly creative and excellent problem solvers, just like inventors Fred and George.
They live in the here and now and they are always looking for fun and adventure. Life is meant to be enjoyed and should never be taken too seriously.
Bellatrix Lestrange ESFP MBTI
Bellatrix Lestrange also displays this ESFP personality, and she always put on a show wherever she turned up. She enjoyed the dark arts and relished the excitement and adventure that came along with being a Death Eater. She lived for the here and now, rather than having a plan like her master.
James Potter ESFP MBTI
James Potter is another ESFP Performer, who was more interested in having a good time at school than learning but was resourceful enough to do well. He liked to show off on the Quidditch Pitch, and by bullying fellow students with innocent jinxes.
ESFJ MBTI – The Caregiver
People with an ESFJ personality love looking after other people, but this does not mean that they are all hearts and roses. They have a tough and angry side if they think they are being treated unfairly.
Molly Weasley ESFJ MBTI
Molly Weasley is a classic example of an ESFJ Caregiver who is very sensitive to the feelings and needs of others and finds fulfillment through helping. She was quick to take Harry under her wing and was also the first to notice and take action when she realized that Tonks was having difficulties.
However, she also expects her kindness to be noticed and appreciated and can get upset when this is not the case. This would explain at least in part her initial dislike of Fleur Delacour. She can be quick to anger when she feels crossed, as her sons often experienced.
ESFJs also care what other people think. This is part of the reason that Molly was so happy when her children were made Prefects and Head Boy. This kind of recognition meant a lot to her.
Lucius Malfoy ESFJ MBTI
Lucius Malfoy is also an ESFJ Caregiver, with his sense of value derived from how he is perceived by others, whether that be the Dark Lord, Ministry, or fellow Death Eaters. He is sensitive to the feelings of others and uses this to press their buttons. Lucius is easily angered when things don’t go his way.
Lavendar Brown ESFJ MBTI
Lavender Brown is another ESFJ who wants to care for others, but also wants recognition for that care. She can turn angry quickly when she feels like she is being ignored or unappreciated, something one-time boyfriend Ron Weasley learned quickly.
ENFP MBTI – The Champion
People with an ENFP personality genuinely enjoy life and aren’t ashamed to get excited about things. They care about their nearest and dearest and would sacrifice themselves for them, but they imagine a bright future.
Ron Weasley ENFP MBTI
Ron Weasley is a champion. The group is called this because they have a genuine enthusiasm for life and care deeply about other people. Ron was always a good friend, and also always the first of the trio to get excited about anything. He was also ready to sacrifice himself for his friends on various occasions, from the chessboard in the first book to the torture of Bellatrix Lestrange in the last.
People like Ron tend to have big ideas, but struggle to see them through. This is because they are easily distracted, and tend to be disorganized and procrastinators. This is why Ron could never get his homework done.
Despite not being good at long-term planning, Champions think about the future. We see Ron doing this when he looks in the Mirror of Erised and sees himself several years in the future as Head Boy and with the Quidditch House Cup.
Nymphadora Tonks ENFP MBTI
Nymphadora Tonks is another ENFP who is enthusiastic and friendly but can be easily distracted and forget things. She lives in the here and now, as seen through her desire to marry a werewolf, and her decision to participate in the Battle of Hogwarts rather than stay with her newborn baby son.
Xenophilius Lovegood ENFP MBTI
Xenophilius Lovegood is another ENFP Champion who has big ideas, but talking with him can feel disjointed as he gets distracted and jumps from one thing to another. He always planned on proving the existence of Crumple-Horned Snorkacks, but never managed to do it.
ENFJ MBTI – The Giver
People with ENFJ personalities are natural leaders because others want to follow them. Their authentic genuine nature and giving attitude engenders trust.
Albus Dumbledore ENFJ MBTI
Albus Dumbledore is an excellent example of an ENFJ Giver, a group that are natural leaders and good at getting diverse people to unite behind a cause. They like spending time with other people, are naturally warm and affectionate, and desire great personal satisfaction from helping others.
However, ENFJs tend to carry the weight of the world on their shoulders and always feel like there was more that they could have done. They can also be very hard on themselves when it comes to their own shortcomings. We see this character trait of Dumbledore only after his death.
Lily Evans ENFJ MBTI
Lily Evans is an ENFJ similar to Dumbledore in that she was naturally caring and accepted people for who they were, and could see the value in people with different backgrounds and ideologies. She also had a sense of responsibility, which drove her to do things such as join the Order of the Phoenix.
Poppy Pomfrey ENFJ MBTI
Poppy Pomfrey is a different kind of ENFJ personality, who found a calling helping people without ever wanting anything in return. She always wanted to do more to help the people in her care and felt it deeply when she was unable to do so.
ENTP MBTI – The Debater
People with the ENTP personality are constantly observing and questioning the world around them. But they also like to talk about and share their thoughts with as many people as possible.
Alastor Moody ENTP MBTI
Alastor Moody is called an ENTP Debater because he was willing to work outside the box to get things done. He was an Auror during the first wizarding war, but still joined the rogue organization the Order of the Phoenix to bring down Lord Voldemort.
People with this personality enjoy interacting with other people, and even shocking them. While it was Barty Crouch Jnr and not Moody who showed students the Unforgiveable Curses, this behavior did not seem out of place for the old Auror.
ENTPs often focus more on the big picture rather than the details, which is why they often do well in leadership roles. Moody became the leader of the Order of the Phoenix after the death of Dumbledore.
Sirius Black ENTP MBTI
Sirius Black is also an unconventional ENTP type. He was willing to become an unregistered Animagus in order to support his friend Remus Lupin, a werewolf. He enjoyed the company of many different people, and not just pure-blood wizards, much to the distaste of his family. He always had a dissenting opinion that he was happy to share.
Rita Skeeter ENTP MBTI
Rita Skeeter is an ENTP Debater who knows that the story itself is more important than the details (and the truth). While she rubbed people up the wrong way, she still enjoyed the sense of social adventure that this provided.
ENTJ MBTI – The Commander
People with the ENTJ personality tend to be quite stern and serious, but also naturally commanding. They are wordsmiths who know exactly what to say to get others to fall in line.
Minerva McGonagall ENTJ MBTI
Minerva McGonagall is a natural ENTJ commander with her strict but fair approach to teaching. Students never questioned her, and she was respected by all her colleagues, even grudgingly by Dolores Umbridge.
ENTJs have strong verbal skills, which allow them to get their point across without having to resort to more drastic action. McGonagall was able to control a classroom full of students with just a look!
They tend to prefer to keep their emotions in check, as McGonagall does about her lost love. They rely on logic to make decisions rather than letting emotions steer them off course.
Salazar Slytherin ENTJ MBTI
Salazar Slytherin was a similarly commanding ENTJ figure, highly respected by his colleagues even after he suggested limited Hogwarts education to pureblood wizards. He had a cool head that allowed him to play the long game and create the Chamber of Secrets.
Draco Malfoy ENTJ MBTI
Draco Malfoy is also a naturally authoritative ENTJ, which is why he quickly became the leader of his fellow Slytherins. His sharp tongue meant that he always knew exactly what to say. He did a better job than most of controlling his emotions while he and his family were being threatened by the Dark Lord.
What do you think, based on these Harry Potter characters, which Myers-Briggs personality type seems most like you? Why not take the test and find out if you are right.