Harry and Ginny’s sons, James Sirius Potter and Albus Severus Potter have fairly obvious namesakes when it comes to the Potter Universe. But why did the couple name their daughter after Luna Lovegood? Is there more to the story?
Harry and Luna Lovegood had a close friendship during and after Hogwarts, but the namesake could also come from one of Harry’s professors, Remus Lupin. His werewolf persona earned him the nickname “Moony”, therefore it’s possible that Harry was also honoring him with Lily’s middle name.
Let’s take a gander at both sides of the equation – Harry’s long term friendship with Lovegood, and his close familial bond with Lupin. Warning if you’re yet to venture into the world of Harry Potter: Spoilers ahead!
Meeting Luna Lovegood
We were first introduced to Lovegood in Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix, on the Hogwarts Express train heading towards the school for the start of the school year.
Harry found her to be quite odd – not surprising considering she is portrayed as such a quirky character throughout the series.
While she was strange, Potter found common ground with her in that she was one of the few people who believed his account of Lord Voldemort returning. He sympathized with her, as she also lost her mother, and because of her similar reputation as an outsider.
Becoming Close Friends
After meeting, Luna and Harry’s lives continued to intertwine. She was constantly involved in their adventures: She joined Dumbledore’s Army which was created by Harry, Hermione, and Ron, she battled with them against Death Eaters, and also fought in the Battle of Hogwarts to support her friends.
Just before the Battle of Hogwarts, Harry even remarked that he considered Luna one of his dearest friends, hoping that he could see her before his (supposed) impending death.
Those certainly weren’t the only times that we saw Luna and Harry’s friendship grow.
When Harry’s godfather, Sirius Black, was killed, they confided in each other and had a discussion about afterlife. After speaking, Harry expressed that he “found that the terrible weight in his stomach seemed to have lessened slightly.”
Luna even had a portrait of Harry hanging on the roof of her bedroom, which made Harry experience “a great rush of affection” for her.
Another prominent display of their bond came in 1996 when Luna was asked by Potter to go to the Christmas party held by Professor Slughorn. His decision to ask her came following his realization that he “had never met anyone quite like her.”
From these instances, and many others that we can’t fit all in one article, it’s clear to see why Harry and his wife, Ginny Weasley, decided to honor Lovegood with their daughter’s middle name.
Now, let’s look into Harry’s connection with Lupin, and how this could also be an explanation behind the name.
The Effects of Remus Lupin on Harry’s Life
The audience is first introduced to Remus in the third installment to the series, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
While he had first met Harry as a baby, Harry’s first experience with the professor was on the Hogwarts Express. He saved the teenager from an attack by some Dementors.
Later, it was revealed that he would be Harry’s professor for Defence Against the Dark Arts.
Potter instantly liked Lupin, and they formed a strong bond. Following a Boggart class, which served to expose its observer’s worst fears, Harry confided in his professor about the appearance of a Dementor.
Professor Lupin was surprised that Lord Voldemort had not been the form of Harry’s worst fears, and said that he was “very impressed” with the young man.
Watch their full interaction below:
Even when Harry later found out that Lupin was in fact a werewolf, his fondness for the professor remained unscathed.
In the years following the third installment of the story, Remus shared anecdotes with Harry about his parents and godfather, enforcing their close relationship.
Sadly, Remus was killed in the final book during the Battle of Hogwarts.
So, what is the connection between the name “Luna” and Remus Lupin?
Well, “Remus” is derived from a Roman legend, where the founders of Rome – Romulus and Remus – were brought up by a she-wolf. “Lupin” resembles “Luna”, and comes from the Latin meaning of a wolf, “lupus”.
He was also nicknamed “Moony”, due to his werewolf connection to the moon, which is another indicator of the similarity to “Luna”.