"All right. Fred, George, go and get your bats and a Bludger."
-- Angelina Johnson, Gryffindor Quidditch Team captain (OP14)
Beaters’ bats, which are also called “clubs”, are enchanted wooden bats used in the game of Quidditch by Beaters. Beaters hit the Bludgers with the bats in an effort to affect their flight (away from fellow team members and/or toward opposing team members).
The enchantments are necessary because of the weight and composition of the Bludgers. When Bludgers used to be made of rock, the Beaters’ bats were able to smash them into gravel because of their magical reinforcement (QA6).
Although Beaters have been called “thugs with bats”, the pinpoint precision and creative flair exhibited by Beaters Shingo and Hongo from Japan and Okoye and Ojukwu from Nigeria during their 2014 Quiddtich World Cup quarter-final match was described as being the work of artists (QWC).
The first mention of using clubs to hit an early form of Bludger (the “Blooder”) is in a letter from Goodwin Kneen to his cousin in Olaf in Norway (QA3).
The bats are described as being heavy (PA8).
Using the Beaters’ bat to backhand a Bludger is a tactic called “Bludger Backbeat“. Another tactic is for both the Beaters to use their bats together for extra power hitting a Bludger, the “Dopplebeater Defence” (QA10).
Beaters’ bats at Hogwarts
In spite of the danger, Hogwarts students use the same Beaters bats as professional players.
Oliver Wood explained what the bats do before Harry Potter joined his first practice session for the Gryffindor Quidditch team (PS10). Harry, in turn, gave Colin Creevey a more concise summary of their purpose the following year (CS7).
Beaters’ bats (clubs) were used against players by both Gryffindor and Slytherin during the match that took place during Harry’s third year. Both teams were penalised (PA15). The same behaviour was exhibited by the Bulgarian Beaters, Volkov and Vulchanov during the final of the 1994 Quidditch World Cup (GF8).
The Beaters' bats are interchangeably referred to as "clubs" - this may be a better description of how they are sometimes used.
"No foul! German referee Herman Junker concludes that Rafael Santos did not mean to hit Viktor Krum around the back of the skull with his Beater's bat."
-- Ginny Weasley's commentary for the Daily Prophet at the 2014 Quidditch World Cup (QWC)
Lexicon lists of:
From the Web
Writing by J K Rowling on WizardingWorld.com (Pottermore): The Daily Prophet
Screenshots of the Daily Prophet coverage of the 2014 Quidditch World Cup (originally from Pottermore), written by J.K. Rowling, and saved on Imgur:
- History of the Quidditch World Cup
- Quidditch World Cup 1990-2014
- Match reports and articles from the 2014 Quidditch World Cup
WizardingWorld.com (Pottermore) features:
Harry Potter Wiki: Beater's bat