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The reminder that first years are not allowed broomsticks is a play off the fact that some colleges do not allow freshman to have cars.
The Leaky Cauldron’s Dedalus Diggle is the same wizard whose excessive fireworks show was discussed by Dumbledore and Professor McGonagall at the book’s beginning.
Warning: spoiler material ahead. Quirrell is in the Leaky Cauldron because he is about to attempt to steal the Sorcerer’s Stone from Gringotts Bank.
Vault 713 incorporates both lucky numbers used in these books: 7 and 13. See Numbers under the Other Elements Section for more detail.
Draco’s statements represent what Harry and Rowling hate most: bullies, spoiled children, arrogance, snobbism, and “racism” (against Muggles).
Bullies - “I think I’ll bully father into getting me one [a racing broom] and I’ll smuggle it in somehow.”
Spoiled children - “Harry was strongly reminded of Dudley. ‘Have you got your own broom?’ the boy went on.”
Arrogance - “Father says it’s a crime if I’m not picked to play for my house, and I must say, I agree.”
Snobbism - ” ‘He’s [Hagrid] sort of servant, isn’t he?”
Racism (against Muggles) - “But they were our kind, weren’t they? ...I really don’t think they should let the other sort in...”
The Curses and Counter-Curses book is by Vindictus Viridian. Vindictus is a play off the word “vindicate,” which can mean “to avenge.”
Mr. Ollivander’s passing comments about Voldemort (“ “After all, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named did great things-- terrible, yes, but great.”) highlights the book’s theme about good and evil. At the book’s end, Quirrell tells Harry “There is no good and evil, there is only power, and those too weak to seek it.” Needless to say, Harry, Dumbledore, and Rowling hold the opposite opinion.
Hagrid’s canary yellow circus tent (on page 65 of the hardcover) remains a mystery to me.