"This school exists for a single and timeless purpose: to reveal your innate abilities and hone them to the highest degree. Now, what you do with it after that is entirely up to you. If you want to take over the world, we don't teach that, but give it a go."
Henry Fogg[src]

Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy, also known as Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, Brakebills Preparatory College of Magic, Brakebills Academy for Magical Pedagogy, or simply Brakebills, is the premier institution for the study of magic in North America and one of two magical universities found in the United States of America.

History

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Early History

Establishment

Brakebills University as seen from Seagrave's lawn.

Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy was established in Upstate New York in 1763 and became the standard-bearer of the American magical society, having given rise to generation after generation of illustrious Magicians. Using enchanted globes to find people with magical potential, the school evaluates all potential students with scouts before sending them an invitation to take the Entrance Exam and determine whether or not they qualify for enrollment. Though the wards surrounding the school keep it hidden from civilians, some have been known to make their way through the forest and onto campus grounds.[1]

By the 1920s Brakebills taught English and American magic almost exclusively, and as such, lacked a diverse student body until a vogue for multicultural spellcasting swept the school in the '30s and '40s, and the school imported professors from all around, including Dean Mayakovsky and Professor Neeny Bigby, a Pixie.[2] The school recruited skirt-wearing shamans from Micronesian dot-islands; hunch-shouldered, hookah-puffing wizards from inner-city Cairo coffeehouses; and blue-faced Tuareg necromancers from southern Morocco.[3]

Banning Battle Magic

In 1879, Brakebills provided training in Battle Magic to its students, and Professor Neeny Bigby led the course during World War II, when Rupert Chatwin attended the school after he was discharged from the war due to his injuries. Neeny Bigby taught Chatwin how to cast the Rhinemann Ultra, a powerful spell that required the strength of a Master Magician to cast, which Chatwin used to win the Battle of the Bulge in 1945 for the Allied Powers. However, due to the high amount of student deaths in the 1970s, the course was banned by the Brakebills Board of Trustees, and Neeny Bigby was fired from the school. Prior to leaving, however, Neeny Bigby left clues in the school's library for how to find her in the future when a Brakebills student would need her help.[2]

Places of Interest

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A Map of Brakebills

Trivia

Behind the Scenes

  • Scenes set at Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy were filmed at:
  • The Magicians producer and showrunner Sera Gamble revealed in an interview with Slate that Brakebills was changed from an undergraduate program to a graduate school due to considerations for practical production: "According to executive producer Sera Gamble, Brakebills was originally an undergraduate campus in the show, just as it is in the books. “Then we took it out into the world to sell it,” Gamble said. One of the first things SYFY pointed out was the practical challenge of depicting characters who would have to age so drastically as the series progressed. Over the course of the three books, the central characters age from their late teen years into their ’30s. “That was sort of our practical production consideration: We want to be able to tell a story that takes place over 10 to 15 years,” Gamble said. And the difference between an actor who looks 17 and one who looks 22, Gamble said, is very dramatic. So, why not swap the college out for graduate school?"[5]

See Also

References

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