If the ChekhovsArmory in ''Literature/HarryPotter'' were an actual army, it would curbstomp everyone in a massive ZergRush. Also, there may be unmarked spoilers. Please list examples by book:
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone]]
* The Mirror of Erised [[spoiler:is used to hide the titular stone.]]
* Harry's scar [[spoiler:alerts him to Voldemort's presence, lets him see what Voldemort is seeing, and eventually is revealed to be from Voldemort's accidental Horcrux in Harry.]]
* The flash of green light from [[spoiler:the Killing Curse, Avada Kedavra]].
* The bezoar mentioned briefly in Harry's first Potions class is later used in ''Book 6'' for Harry to circumvent an antidote challenge, and [[spoiler: to save Ron after he accidentally drinks a bottle of poisoned mead.]]
** Also used in ''Book 6'' as a clue to the identity of [[spoiler: the eponymous Half-Blood Prince.]]
* The tongue-tying curse mentioned in Harry's first visit to Flourish and Blotts, which keeps [[spoiler:Snape]] from telling the location of [[spoiler:Grimmauld Place to the Death Eaters]] in Book 7.
* Probably the one that holds the record for longest intro-to-relevance time is Dumbledore's deluminator, aka the "Put-Outer". Introduced in the first chapter of this book, it gets a throwaway cameo in Book 5, then becomes critical to the plot about halfway through [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheDeathlyHallows Book 7]].
* The Snitch from Harry's first Quidditch match sat around for six-nearly-seven books before being useful for more than just being, well, an awesome catch. And the fact he caught it in his mouth is used to stretch it out a few extra pages.
* In the scene where Harry goes to buy his wand, Olivander comments rather offhandedly that Harry's father, James, "favored a mahogany wand. Eleven inches. Pliable. A little more power and excellent for ''transfiguration''." Well, good for him, because that surely must have come in handy later when [[spoiler:he undertook becoming an Animagus, as is revealed in the third book.]]
** In the same scene, he reveals that Harry's wand and Voldemort's share their core's source, which becomes important at the end of [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheGobletofFire Goblet of Fire]].
* Hagrid mentions that his flying motorbike belongs to Sirius Black; [[spoiler:Sirius isn't mentioned again until Book 3, and the motorbike itself doesn't come back until Book 7]].
* Ron's spell to turn Scabbers yellow. Maybe Fred and George weren't wrong about it working on rats. They hadn't tried it on an [[spoiler:Animagus.]]
* ChekhovsBoomerang: The Dumbledore card from the Chocolate Frog, functioning in this book [[spoiler:to inform the characters about Nicolas Flamel]] and in ''Deathly Hallows'' [[spoiler:about Grindelwald]].
* ChekhovsGift: The InvisibilityCloak passed down from James, which Harry gets for Christmas, not only helps him throughout the series but turns out to be [[spoiler:one of the age-old, titular Deathly Hallows]] in Book 7.
** Rather [[HilariousInHindsight hilariously,]] there was a book released a short time before the book that discussed Chekhov's Guns from the books. It concluded that, since so many people knew about it at this point (reasoning that Snape told Voldemort), the cloak had no more bullets left to fire. Boy was it wrong.
*** There is a scene in ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheOrderOfThePhoenix'' where Moody mentions that ''his'' Invisibility Cloak is starting to lose its powers [[spoiler:(hinting that Harry's cloak is special in some way, because it isn't losing its at all despite being handed down from his father, at the very least).]]
* Hagrid mentioning that he was expelled from Hogwarts. We find out why in Book 2.
* Hagrid explaining how secure Gringotts is, that dragons guard the high security vaults, and also how unwise it is to try double-crossing Goblins (or otherwise pissing them off).
* ChekhovsGunman / ChekhovsArmy: Numerous characters, including:
** Nicolas Flamel.
** Mrs. Figg is introduced as Harry's babysitter, and we hear very little of her afterwards. In Book 5, [[spoiler:she's revealed to be a Squib, and is the lone witness in Harry's Ministry hearing]].
*** She is also mentioned at the end of Book 4: [[spoiler:When Dumbledore discovers Voldemort's return, he orders Sirius to contact old members of the order. He mentions Remus Lupin, Mundungus Fletcher, and ''Arabella Figg!'']]
** [[spoiler:Grindelwald]], mentioned in passing on [[spoiler: Dumbledore's chocolate frog card]], and not mentioned again until Book 7, where he's critical to the plot.
** Petunia Dursley. While she's established as an important character, a reader may wonder why Dumbledore took Harry to live with his horrible, abusive relatives or why Harry in the later books even bothers to return to the Dursleys' home at the end of each school year. In Book 5, it's revealed that [[spoiler:because she has Lily's blood in her, her presence protects Harry from Voldemort until he comes of age]].
** Sirius Black, mentioned in passing by Hagrid at the beginning of the book, and not mentioned again until he ends up being the [[spoiler:perceived villain]] for most of Book 3.
** Snape is introduced and is a major character, but it takes a few more books before we realise just how important he is.
** Others include Griphook, Olivander and Scabbers.
** FirstGirlWins: ''Two'' cases. The first girl we see Ron meet to whom he isn't related is Hermione. Likewise when Harry first was on his way to Hogwarts, the very first girl we're shown with him is Ginny shyly trying to get a peep at him. Both of these come to fruition so late in the books that they definitely qualify.
** The ''Wingardium Leviosa'' levitation charm [[spoiler:is used to knock out the mountain troll. In Book 7, Trelawney uses it on a crystal ball during the Battle of Hogwarts to take out Fenrir Greyback.]]
** Ron's skill at wizard chess also comes in handy.
** Harry's ability to talk to snakes is assumed by Harry and the readers to be [[spoiler:a manifestation of his wizard abilities]], but we later learn [[spoiler:it's Dark Magic accidentally granted to Harry by Voldemort.]]
*** Much later on in Book 6, [[spoiler:we see that a young Tom Riddle assumed the same thing.]]
** The ability of Animagi to change themselves from human to animal form. Shown being done in this book only by [=McGonagall=], but then turning out to be very important when done by other characters in the later books.
** "Could Snape possibly know they've found out about the Philosopher's Stone? Harry didn't see how he could, yet he sometimes had the horrible feeling that [[spoiler:Snape could read minds.]]"
*** [[spoiler:Snape is not actually that good at reading minds (Dumbledore and Voldemort are the masters of that). His main talent is that he is a master of preventing people who are skilled at reading minds, including Voldemort, from reading his mind, making him the perfect double agent.]]
* This gets more attention in the film than anything, but the first part of Harry that Snape looks at is his eyes, not the scar. The seventh book reveals why.
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets]]
* Many things in this book ([[spoiler:Tom Riddle, his diary, Ginny's feelings for Harry]]) come back and play an important role in book six.
** Some examples: [[spoiler: the Basilisk's fangs, which turns up again in book seven; the diary, which we later learn is a Horcrux; Ron's malfunctioning wand; the damaged Vanishing Cabinet that becomes important in book six.]]
*** Basilisk Fangs. [[spoiler: Turns out Basilisk venom is one of a very few ways to destroy a Horcrux. When Harry uses the sword of Gryffindor to kill the basilisk, he imbues it with said venom. Dumbledore later uses the sword to destroy the ring horcrux, Ron then uses it to destroy the locket horcrux, and [[TookALevelInBadass Neville]] uses it to destroy Nagini, the last remaining horcrux at the time. Hermione and Ron later return to the Chamber and Hermione uses a fang to destroy the Hufflepuff Cup horcrux.]]
** ChekhovsSkill: "[[ThePhoenix Phonixes]] can carry enormous weight, [[spoiler: their tears have healing powers...]]"
*** They also regularly die and then return to life, which allows Fawkes to [[spoiler: intercept Voldemort's ''Avada'' in book 5, TakingTheBullet for Dumbledore.]]
* Harry winds up on Knockturn Alley, at Borgin and Burkes' dark antique shop. There he hides in a dark cabinet and sees Lucius Malfoy sell Borgin an opal necklace that kills people. [[spoiler:In the sixth book, Harry tracks Draco Malfoy to see him arrange the repairs of the Vanishing Cabinet, implied to be the same one he hid in. Also, the opal necklace almost killed Katie Bell, courtesy of Malfoy]].
* Ginny kindles her affection for Harry. [[spoiler:They finally get together in his sixth year.]]
* The trio spend the year suspecting Malfoy of scheming. [[spoiler:In the sixth year, Harry suspects him again and he's right]].
* [[ItMakesSenseInContext The plaque Ron barfs slugs all over during his detention]]. Ron ends cleaning it so much that the name Tom Riddle ends firmly recorded in his mind. Harry and Ron deduce that Tom Riddle was a Head Boy when the Chamber was opened and must have known about it. [[spoiler:They search for the Half-Blood Prince there in book 6, but find nothing.]]
** Also the curse that Ron tried to cast on Malfoy [[HoistByHisOwnPetard but backfired on him]] was the reason he barfed a slug in the first place.
* Dobby is introduced, shown to be capable of potent magic such as apparition without the limitations that human wizards have, and freed. All of those are crucial elements in the final book.
* Draco mentions that the Malfoys have a secret chamber in which to hide their Dark artefacts in their home, but the Ministry agents do not find it. In Book Six, this room is mentioned again.
* Lucius Malfoy uses a dark artifact to his own ends in an intricate plot. [[spoiler:The destruction of said artifact [[SpannerInTheWorks backfires on him and his master]] in the sixth and seventh book, where it turns out to be a SoulJar belonging to Voldemort.]]
* After Dumbledore's expulsion, Malfoy suggests to Snape that he applies for Headmaster. [[spoiler:This is where he winds up in the seventh book]].
* [[spoiler:The Basilisk venom that destroyed the diary and Gryffindor's sword come in handy for the destruction of the other Horcruxes as well. Also, Ron and Hermione reopen the Chamber of Secrets specifically to obtain the Basilisk's fangs and destroy the remaining Horcruxes]].
* Draco Malfoy calls Hermione "filthy little Mudblood" and it is stressed upon how highly offensive the term is to Muggleborns. [[spoiler:Three books later we learn that, in the past, Snape called Harry's mother that, which was the catalyst for half the events in the series]].
* Dumbledore points out that only a true Gryffindor can pull Godric Gryffindor's sword out of the Sorting Hat. Neville Longbottom, TheUnchosenOne, does so when he finally proves [[TheSoCalledCoward that he's not a coward]] and [[spoiler:destroys Voldemort's last Horcrux. Also, the sword again kills a snake]].
* Dumbledore tells Harry that he suspects a part of Voldemort may live inside him. [[spoiler:This proves true and Harry turns out to be an unintentional Horcrux]].
* According to Dumbledore, [[NotSoDifferent Harry shares some Slytherin traits whit Voldemort]], such as "certain disregard for the rules". [[spoiler:This very disregard for the rules allowed Harry to get acquainted with the Room of Requirement, where Riddle had hidden a Horcrux. Dumbledore, having been a model student, never thought of it.]]
* Mundungus Fletcher is mentioned in passing by Arthur for having tried to hex him during a raid. Mundungus becomes important in books five through seven.
* Hagrid tells the trio that the [=DADA=] position is rumored to be jinxed in this book. Sure enough, no [=DADA=] teacher in the subsequent books lasts longer than a year, either [[spoiler: because Voldemort cursed the job when ''he'' was denied it.]]
* At Borgin and Burkes, Malfoy notices the HandOfGlory, a magical artifact that gives light only to the holder. [[spoiler:He eventually uses it in Book 6 for his plan to let Death Eaters into the school.]]
** The same scene also mentions the [[spoiler:cursed necklace and, though it's presented as no more than a regular cupboard in this scene, the Vanishing Cabinet, both of which also become major plot-points in [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheHalfBloodPrince The Half-Blood Prince]].]]
* ChekhovsBoomerang: The Whomping Willow. Harry and Ron crash into it when they first arrive at Hogwarts. In book 3, [[spoiler:Harry's Nimbus is blown into the Willow when he falls off it thanks to the Dementors during the Hufflepuff match, and is smashed to bits by the tree. It's revealed a chapter later to have been planted the year Lupin arrived at Hogwarts, and later still, that the tree was planted ''because'' he had come to Hogwarts, and planted over one of the tunnel mouths (also described below) to stop anyone coming across Lupin as a werewolf.]]
** The flying car is used to take Harry from the Dursley's house. Then again to fly to Hogwarts and [[spoiler: then to escape from the Forbidden Forest later.]]
** Book-only. Fred and George's Filibuster Fireworks. George forgets the box of them when they are leaving to go to Hogwarts, then he and Fred attempt to feed one to a Salamander at Halloween, and then [[spoiler:Harry uses one to create a diversion in Potions class so Hermione can obtain the last two ingredients they need for the Polyjuice Potion.]]
** Godric Gryffindor's sword. [[spoiler:It's used to kill the Basilisk at the end of the book, and, as mentioned above, is then used to destroy three of Voldemort's Horcruxes.]]
** Moaning Myrtle's bathroom. Mrs Norris, the Basilisk's first victim, is found outside the bathroom on Halloween, Harry, Ron and Hermione brew the Polyjuice Potion in there, Harry and Ron discover Riddle's diary in the bathroom shortly afterwards, [[spoiler:and later it turns out to be where the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets is. It also is mentioned in book 7, when Ron and Hermione enter the Chamber of Secrets so they can destroy the Hufflepuff cup Horcrux.]]
* [[spoiler: Movie-only. When Riddle is showing Harry his capture of Hagrid, he uses the spell ''Arania exumai'' to beat back Aragog after letting him out of Hagrid's trunk. When Aragog later sets the other spiders on Harry and Ron in the Forbidden Forest, Harry remembers the spell and uses it to beat back some of the spiders as they make their escape in the car.]]
* Socks. [[spoiler:Dobby tells Harry that if he can only be freed if his masters present him with clothes, and that if he was presented with even a sock, he would be free to leave his masters' house for ever. At the end, Harry tricks Lucius Malfoy into doing just that, releasing Dobby from servitude.]]
* Harry's letter from the Improper Use of Magic Office was sent by Mafalda Hopkirk, who makes a reappearance in book 7, when [[spoiler:Hermione uses her hair in Polyjuice Potion to infiltrate the Ministry.]]
** Polyjuice Potion itself. It ends up becoming [[spoiler: a method by which a Death Eater is able to infiltrate Hogwarts in Book 4. In Book 6, it turns out Draco has been having Crabbe and Goyle disguise themselves using it to act as his watchmen incognito while he works on his plans in the Room of Requirement, and in Book 7, it's part of the plan to safely relocate Harry from the Dursleys', as well as how the Trio infiltrate the Ministry of Magic.]]
* The Ghoul, who Ron mentions lives in the attic, shows up in book 7 [[spoiler: when he's transfigured into Ron so Ron can go with Harry and the family avoids suspicion by the Ministry]]
* Riddle's diary first appears in Chapter Five when Ginny realizes that she forgot the diary at the Burrow.
* ChekhovsClassroom: The Herbology lesson on mandrakes establishes their curative effects before anyone at Hogwarts actually needs them. The fact that fantastic creatures' death-inducing powers can be rendered non-lethal under the right circumstance (mandrakes too young) is also slipped into the lesson: a fact that will save a lot of lives that year. And said death-inducing powers become part of the defensive measures by the Hogwarts students in the Battle of Hogwarts.
* ChekhovsGunman: Tom Riddle.
** Penelope Clearwater, the Petrified Ravenclaw prefect. When Percy finds this out, he is left in shock. Fred tells Harry he thinks it's because Percy didn't think the monster would dare attack a prefect, [[spoiler:but the real reason is because, as we find out at the end, she is actually Percy's girlfriend]].
** Moaning Myrtle. She first appears at the Deathday Party (book-only), then makes a few more appearances while the Polyjuice Potion is being made in her bathroom. [[spoiler:Near the end, Harry and Ron realise (thanks to Aragog) that she was the student killed by the Basilisk the last time the Chamber was opened.]]
* ChekhovsSkill: Ron, while convincing Harry to take the Ford Anglia, mentions apparation, which he and Hermione formally learn in book 6 and becomes very important in book 7.
** Also, Harry learns his "signature" spell Expelliarmus (from Snape, of all people!) at the Dueling Club that occurs in this book, which ends up being a gift that keeps on giving. The idea of Snape as a StealthMentor (sometimes unintentionally) comes up ''big time'' in Book 6. Also, the idea of an informal group learning dueling skills ends up becoming a big deal in Book 5 when Harry becomes the leader of one. And guess what the first spell is that he teaches his group? [[spoiler: Also, the group is reborn in Book 7 and really gets a lot of mileage out of all the stuff Harry taught them...]]
* When life at the Burrow is first described, we are told that "small explosions from Fred and George's bedroom were considered perfectly normal." Two books later, it turns out that the explosions were a side effect of the twins working on products for the joke shop they wanted to (and eventually do) open.
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban]]
* The newspaper photo of the Weasley family's vacation [[spoiler:is used by Sirius Black to realize Pettigrew is alive.]]
* The Firebolt. Harry sees it first in Diagon Alley, and later gets one for Christmas [[spoiler:from Sirius after his Nimbus is smashed by the Whomping Willow.]] He uses it in book 4 for the first task in the Triwizard Tournament, and in book 5 to get from the Dursley's house to 12 Grimmauld Place.
* The tunnels leading out of Hogwarts, and the Marauder's Map. Harry uses the tunnels to get to Hogsmeade twice, using the map, and the one under the Whomping Willow is used to get to the Shrieking Shack [[spoiler:built to smuggle Lupin out of the castle at the full moon.]] After the map is confiscated by Lupin [[spoiler:he learns from it that Pettigrew is alive (in the film, Harry tells Lupin that he saw Pettigrew on the map, arousing his suspicion in the first place). The map turns out to have been written by Lupin himself, along with Sirius, Pettigrew and James Potter,]] and after Lupin returns it at the end of the book, it goes on to help Harry and the others throughout the rest of the series.
* Crystal balls. Mentioned first by Trelawney in her first Divination class, then it turns out to be part of the Divination exam later in the same book. [[spoiler:Trelawney uses crystal balls as weapons in the battle of Hogwarts in book 7, where she uses one to take out Fenrir Greyback.]]
* ChekhovsGunman: Sirius was mentioned in passing way back in the first chapter of the first book. This is when the reader really starts to realize just how much planning went into these books, and [[EpilepticTrees kicked off the frenzied search for what other hints and clues might pay off later]].
** Also [[spoiler: Scabbers, AKA Peter Pettigrew]], and to a much lesser extent Crookshanks.
** Professor Trelawney, at the end of the book, Dumbledore casually mentions that he should give her a raise, since the prediction she made about Wormtail turned out to be true, and that it was the second accurate prediction she had ever made. At the end of [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheOrderOfThePhoenix OotP]], it's revealed what the first one was.
* Snape seemed to be the only teacher zealously trying to find Sirius. He's even willing enough to kill him and eager enough to watch the dementors suck out his soul. [[spoiler: We find out that Sirius was a bully in the fifth book, and that Snape, like most people, thought that Sirius had led Voldemort to James and Lily. The seventh book reveals Snape's [[UnrequitedLove feelings for Lily]].]]
* Also, quite a few of the predictions done in the Divination Classroom turn out to be truer than one would've thought!
** Ron: So...you're gonna suffer...but you're gonna be happy about it...
** Just a few sentences later we also know that [[spoiler:Harry will work for the ministry (As an auror, no less), get unexpected fortunes (from winning the Triwizard tournament the next year) and die. Even if it happens a lot later (and under different circumstances) than expected]].
** Trelawney also predicts that Hermione drops out of Divination class by Easter. Even if she probably did not know it herself at the time. [[labelnote:*]] She predicted that "One of our number will leave us forever". She misinterpreted it as a DeadlyEuphemism.[[/labelnote]]
** Trelawny continues to predict a grim in Harry's life. A Grim resembles a large black dog according to this book...and boy howdy does a large black dog [[spoiler:(Sirius Black's animagus form)]] play a part in Harry's life by the end of this book and through book 5.
** Furthermore, she claims the grim is an omen of death. [[spoiler:It is. Just not for Harry.]]
** Trelawny also tells Parvati Patil to beware a red-haired man. Ron goes out with her sister the next book...
* The spy who tipped Dumbledore off that Voldemort was going after the Potters [[spoiler:was Snape]].
* The sneakoscope that Ron thought to be broken because it kept spinning [[spoiler: when Scabbers was near it]].
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire]]
* Mad-Eye Moody gives Neville a book on magical water-plants at the beginning of the year. [[spoiler:This is actually Barty Crouch Jr., and he gave it to Neville hoping that Harry would be willing to ask anyone for help and would learn about gillyweed from him.]]
* ChekhovsGunman: Bertha Jorkins, Bellatrix Lestrange, Barty Crouch, Jr.
** A more specific example related to Bertha Jorkins, her having been traveling in Albania when she was caught, [[spoiler:her Memory Charm broken, and she was forced to divulge the truth about Barty Crouch, Jr]]. Why? [[spoiler:Albania is where Helena Ravenclaw hid her mother's diadem, and where Voldemort later found it so as to take it to the Room of Requirement. ''And'' it's highly likely this is where Quirrell was traveling when he encountered Voldemort's spirit and became corrupted/possessed; he was supposed to have been in the Black Forest, which shows he was already moving around Europe.]]
* [[ChekhovsGunman Chekhov's Gunsnake]]: Nagini is introduced in the seemingly [[AndNowForSomethingCompletelyDifferent unrelated]] first chapter and is not featured significantly until the next book, when Voldemort orders her to attack [[spoiler:Arthur Weasley]] and Harry [[spoiler:is able to see the scene not only through Voldemort's eyes, but through Nagini's, possibly because ''[[FridgeBrilliance they're both Voldemort's Horcruxes]]''.]]
* Dumbledore's brief look of triumph when he is told that Voldemort used Harry's blood to resurrect himself. [[spoiler: Dumbledore just realized that Voldemort had just made it possible for Harry to survive the Killing Curse again.]]
* ChekhovsSkill: The Unforgivable Curses.
** The flash of green light Harry kept remembering in the first book. Revealed in this book to be [[spoiler: the killing curse]].
** Neville reacting badly to the Cruciatus Curse. Later in that book, we find out why...
** Accio spell. Taught in Flitwick's class earlier in the book. Harry struggles with it and then finds out it's the only way to get his broom to him to survive the first task. He eventually gets it right and uses it successfully not only in the tournament but to call the Tri-Wizard cup to him in the graveyard allowing him to take [[spoiler: Cedric's body]] and himself back to Hogwarts.
* Trelawney says she has seen the death descending over Hoggwarts in the crystal ball and looks preoccupied at Harry while saying so. [[spoiler: At the end of the year Cedric dies. In front of Harry.]]
* Harry and Ron seem to be great seers themselves. When to made up prophecies for their Divination assignment, quite a few seem to be accurate:
** Harry predicts he is in danger of burns; the first Triwizard task is to outsmart a dragon.
** Ron predicts Harry would be disappointed by someone he thought was his friend, which could either mean Ron's behavior toward Harry after he was chosen as a Triwizard champion, or [[spoiler: Mad-Eye Moody actually being a Death Eater in disguise]].
* During the Yule Ball, Dumbledore makes mention of having a PottyEmergency and discovering a room with "a really rather magnificent collection of chamberpots. When I went back to investigate more closely, I discovered that the room had vanished". Perhaps, Dumbledore theorizes, the room only appears when somebody really, really needs it...
* After Hagrid is embarrassed by Rita Skeeter, and wishes to resign because of the public disgrace, Dumbledore tells him that his brother Aberforth had been convicted for practicing inappropriate charms on a goat. This is the first mention of Aberforth, but he becomes vitally important in Book 7.
* A throwaway line from Amos Diggory at the beginning, when he meets Harry, Hermione and the Weasleys to go to the Quidditch World Cup: "The Lovegoods have been there for a week already." We think these are just random people they know until meeting Luna in the next book and her father in Book 7.
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix]]
* [[spoiler:The once-mentioned locket that nobody could open when Number 12 Grimmauld Place was being cleaned out, which became important in book seven]].
* Harry begins having dreams early on in the story about locked doors and winding passages.
* A portrait at St Mungo's insists Ron must have spattergroit; Ron retorts he's just freckled. In ''[[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheDeathlyHallows Deathly Hallows]]'', [[spoiler: Ron fakes being near death with spattergroit to follow Harry on the quest for Horcruxes and buy time to avoid Death Eaters coming after his family for helping Harry]].
* The thestrals, and Harry being able to see them.
* Hermione makes a list containing the names of all the people agreeing to be in the DA. It's mentioned it that signing it feels unusually binding. [[spoiler:Hermione cursed the list so that anyone who revealed the DA to the Ministry would break out in a rash. Not just any rash, either. It (permanently, per WordOfGod) writes 'Sneak' across their face.]]
* In ''Chamber of Secrets'', a passing mention was made to Peeves breaking a cabinet, preventing Harry from getting into trouble. It's mentioned here again, when the Weasley twins push one of Umbridge's hench-students in, and he gets trapped there for months because it's magical. [[spoiler: In the next book, it's revealed to be linked with another cabinet outside the school, and Draco fixes it to let the Death Eaters in.]]
* "Snape's Worst Memory". It involves Snape being publicly humiliated by Siruis, James and Peter, and provides an interesting AlternativeCharacterInterpretation to James Potter (JerkJock, specifically). It's pretty bad on the surface... [[spoiler:but in Book 7, we learn why it was his ''worst'' memory: it was the day he lost Lily forever (due to his own behavior, not really anything James did).]]
* ChekhovsGift: Near the middle of the book, Sirius gives Harry a magic mirror [[spoiler:which is part of a pair that can enable the two holders to communicate magically. Sirius has the other one.]] Made horrifying when you realize that the driving point of the climax of the book is that [[spoiler:Harry is trying to communicate with Sirius, but can't find a means to; only after Sirius has been murdered does he find the mirror in his school trunk.]] It's thrown away and broken, [[spoiler:but a fragment of it becomes important in ''Deathly Hallows'']].
* ChekhovsGunman: Mrs Figg, introduced in Book 1 as Harry's baby-sitter, and then not mentioned again until briefly in ''Goblet'' and this book, which [[spoiler:reveals her to be a squib and is the witness at Harry's trial who gets him acquitted]].
** The barman of the Hog's Head Tavern, identified two books later as [[spoiler:Albus Dumbledore's younger brother Aberforth, who had been mentioned in passing by Dumbledore earlier]]. It was even noted that he "looked vaguely familiar"; this was because Harry had ''already seen him before'', in the photograph of the original Order Of The Phoenix that Moody showed Harry during dinner at Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place.
** Regulus Black, Sirius's brother who is mentioned in passing and the becomes important to the plot in Book 7.
** Kreacher, a seemingly minor character who, in true JK Rowling style, ends up being important to both this book's plot and that of Deathly Hallows. [[spoiler:When screenwriter Michael Goldenberg suggested writing him out of the movie adaptation, Rowling admitted, "If you do that, adapting Seven's going to be ''really'' difficult..."]]
** [[FortuneTeller Professor Trelawney]]. In [[Literature/HarryPotterAndThePrisonerofAzkaban Book 3]] Dumbledore casually mentions that he should give her a raise, since the prediction she made about [[spoiler: Wormtail]] turned out to be true, and that it was the second accurate prediction she had ever made. At the end, it's revealed what the first one was.
** This is also the book where we start to see Neville's emerging combat skill, along with his determination, both of which become of great importance in ''Deathly Hallows''.
** This book also contains an example of what happens when you overuse Chekhov's Gunmen. Harry refers in passing to a Mark Evans while speaking to Dudley. This is a throw-away character who is never mentioned again, but many assumed he would have some importance in the future because he shares a same last name with Lily Potter (née Evans) and Petunia Dursley (née Evans). JK Rowling ''publicly apologised'' for it.
* ChekhovsSkill: Occlumency. [[spoiler:Harry never masters it, but Snape's talent in it is vital to his role as a spy.]]
* ''The Quibbler'', and the fact that Luna Lovegood's father is the editor. We meet him in Book 7.
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince]]
* When Harry [[spoiler:hides his potions book in the Room of Requirement]] he marked the spot with a bust of a warlock wearing a wig and [[spoiler:an old, battered tiara. Said tiara becomes immensely important in Book 7 when it's revealed to be the Lost Diadem of Ravenclaw, one of Voldemort's Horcruxes.]]
** To add to that, the [[spoiler:Room of Requirement itself. Draco was using it, specifically the Room of Hidden Things, to try and find a way to kill Dumbledore. The room is revealed in Book 7 to be the location of one of the Horcruxes, and Draco comes close to foiling Harry there because of how much experience he has with that room - as he says, "I virtually lived in the Room of Hidden Things last year." He knows how to get in.]]
* Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder. [[spoiler:Fred and George show it to Harry when he and the other Weasleys visit their joke shop in Diagon Alley, and mention how it could come in handy if one needs to make a quick escape. Come the end of the book where the school is infiltrated by Death Eaters thanks to Malfoy, and it does exactly that.]]
* ChekhovsBoomerang: Felix Felicis. Harry acquires it from Slughorn during one of the Potions classes. [[spoiler:Hermione thinks Harry spiked Ron with it for one of the Quidditch matches - he hadn't, he just wished them to ''think'' he had - and then Harry uses it to get the true memory from Slughorn where Tom Riddle asked him about Horcruxes.]]
** [[spoiler: Harry gives the ''Order of the Phoenix'' the rest of the potion when he and Dumbledor leave Hoggwarts, thinking that is when Malfoy is going to make his move. It gives ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy to the attacking Death Eaters]].
* Tonks' Patronus changing its form. The fact that it's supposed to represent [[spoiler:Lupin shows that the Patronus often represents someone the caster loves... much like Snape's.]]
* During this years' only Hogsmeade trip, the trio encounter Mundugus again, [[spoiler:selling things he stole from Grimmauld Place. The Hog's Head barman (Aberforth) was talking to him as they approached, and most likely acquired Sirius' mirror at that time, which becomes quite significant in the next book.]]
* Romilda's love potions. [[spoiler:Ron takes them on his birthday, and he falls in love with her, so naturally, Harry takes Ron to Professor Slughorn for a cure, but Prof. Slughorn ends up giving him poison....]]
[[folder:Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows]]
* [[spoiler:Harry's snitch, Dumbledore's Deluminator (aka the Put-Outer), Godric Gryffndor's [[SwordOfPlotAdvancement sword]], dragons at Gringotts, the poem [[TooDumbToLive warning thieves at Gringott's]] entrance, the eye Harry sees in Sirius's mirror, the tiara Harry put on a bust to mark a spot in the Room of Requirement, the locket in the House of Black, Wormtail's hand, Voldemort's claim about Wormtail's loyalty, Wormtail's debt to Harry, Harry's invisibility cloak, and the Basilisk's fangs.]]
** Not to mention [[spoiler:the protection charm cast by Lily which protect Harry from Voldemort. Harry's HeroicSacrifice fuels the same charm, protecting ''all the students and staff of Hogwarts''.]]
* ChekhovsBoomerang: Sirius's mirror.
* ChekhovsGunman: Kreacher, Dobby, Aberforth, Grindelwald.
* ChekhovsGag: Movie-only. In the movies, Seamus had a RunningGag where he'd blow things up accidentally (usually in the [[FunnyBackgroundEvent background]]). Come the Battle of Hogwarts [[spoiler: and [=McGonagall=] knows exactly who to turn to for the demolition of the Hogwarts bridge.]]
** Trelawney's [[spoiler: continued obsession with Harry's death]] finally comes to fruition in this book, though it's the one year where they don't interact until the very end [[spoiler: and [[NotQuiteDead it doesn't take]] anyway]].