In magic theory, dark magic is magic that is affected by the caster's intent, whereas a charm is a spell that is not.[1]

This can run counter to the general vernacular which usually associates dark magic with evil. For instance, the Patronus Charm is very dark magic (and thus not a charm) in the academic sense, as opposed to the Levitation Charm (canon) (wingardium leviosa) which will indeed have the same effet whatever the caster intends it to do.

The charm/dark magic distinction is somewhat blurry as many charms have dark qualities and all dark spells have charm-like qualities.

In the canonEdit


  1. GWSI, Ch. 6