How Wizards Do Money: Luna Lovegood

As soon as you approach Luna Lovegood and Rolf Scamander’s home, which totters over itself as if it were a hollow tree, a nest, and a burrow simultaneously, you know you are about to meet a family who doesn’t quite do things in the usual way.

“We designed our home to represent some of the natural habitats of our favorite research subjects,” Luna says excitedly. “It’s mostly held together by magic… I think.”

Luna is a naturalist; she kept her own name after marriage — “well, it’s mine, isn’t it?” — and spends much of the year traveling and pursuing her now world-famous research.

“I’m like the Horn-Footed Peregriff,” she says delightedly. “The female of the species leaves the nest, and the male cares for the eggs.” A pause, then: “Really a lot of creatures are like that. I don’t see what the fuss is.”

Rolf Scamander writes for the Daily Prophet as its Chief Consulting Magizoologist; the “consulting” aspect of his position means he can perform most of his work at home, sending and receiving copy via owl post. The twins Lorcan and Lysander are just growing out of the toddler stage, and much of the lower third of the home’s walls are covered with their drawings. (The upper two thirds, as well as the ceiling, are covered with Luna’s drawings and Rolf’s poetry.)

“I will give you a poem about how we manage money,” Rolf says, after noticing that I’m twisting my head to read his verses as they traverse a bookcase like creeper vine.

When the moon is like a coin

We spend our coins as well

And yet as the moon wanes

We find our coffers waning still.

At new moon’s time with cupboards bare

We wonder why our funds are spare

And yet we always seem to get paid in the end

So it all works out.

Luna and Rolf’s home does not appear to be a place where anyone worries too much about what’s in the bank account, but despite Rolf’s casual poetry he is quick to add that he does keep track of what they’ve got stored at Gringotts.

“But do you know what’s funny,” Luna said, “the number is the same whether or not it’s observed. Unlike animals. Their behavior changes when you watch them.”

I ask Luna if she doesn’t believe in the adage what gets measured gets managed.

“Muggle culture is so interesting,” she tells me. “The way you believe that if you look at your money every day, you will have influence on it.”

Then she takes me out into the garden to show me the trio of baby owls that Rolf is helping Lorcan and Lysander raise like kittens. Before I leave, she asks if I’d like to take a few extra copies of The Quibbler, to read on the train.

Previously: Bill and Fleur Weasley