The variations of Harry Potter books

Throughout the Harry Potter books, there are some variations between the Bloomsbury (British) and Scholastic (American) editions. Below the first section on "Philosopher's vs. Sorcerer's" is a section on other different terminologies used.

Philosopher's vs. Sorcerer's

When Scholastic was publishing Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone in America, they decided to rename the book Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. They claimed that the American and British uses of the word philosopher were a bit different, so therefore sorcerer was a more appropriate word. Any true Harry Potter fan, American or British, Australian or Hungarian, I'm sure will agree with MuggleMix when we say that decision should not have been made the reasons are:

  1. J.K. Rowling said so, therefore it must be true. She says that if she was in a better position, she would have disagreed at the time.
  2. It belittles Americans, making it seem as if they do not understand what the word "philosopher" means. Americans are smarter than that.
  3. Sorcerer is unspecific. The stone could have belonged to anybody with magical powers in the book. But the British name defines who the stone belongs to and gives the name an entirely different meaning. Sorcerer is a very different word to philosopher.
  4. The stone is referred to as the "Philosopher's Stone" throughout J.K. Rowling's original version, never the "Sorcerer's Stone", so why should the most central object of the book be labelled something completely different in the book title, even if its just being published in a different place?
  5. How is the word "philosopher" in Britain different from the word "sorcerer" in America?
  6. Philosopher's Stone is actually a historical object that people used to search for, while the Sorcerer's Stone has no factual background in real life

Ah well...

Other Terminology

There are some other minor changes that occurred in case Americans got confused. Some ones, such as turning "mum" into "mom" and "trainers" into "sneakers", J.K. Rowling refused to let happen. However, she allowed some changes to be made that, if they were not made, would befuddle the reader:

Skip Dumpster
Minister for Magic Minister of Magic
Sybill Trelawney Sibyll Trelawney
Car park Parking lot
shan't won't
sherbet lemon lemon drop
dustbin trashcan
roundabout carousel
jumper sweater
comprehensive public school
holidaying vacationing
crisps chips
football soccer
lavatory seat toilet seat
barking off his rocker
tinned soup canned soup
wellington bookts rubber boots
tank top sweater vest
nutter maniac
cupboard closet
torch flashlight
letter boxes mailboxes
sack fire
matron nurse
biscuits cookies
while whilst
leaned leant
schedules timetables
walnut satsuma
Augustus Algernon
review revise
shagpile carpet shag carpet
humph hmpf
pants briefs
silver silvery
pinny apron
Pekinese Pekingese
afterwards afterward

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