The Gryffindor Common Room is located in one of the castle's towers (Gryffindor Tower), the entrance to which is located on the seventh floor and is guarded by an oil painting of the Fat Lady, who is garbed in a pink silk dress. She permits entry only after being given the correct (regularly changing) password. Behind her is a large common room, with a fireplace, and two staircases leading up to the boys' and girls' dormitories. It is very comfortable and members of the Gryffindor house meet there for study groups, celebrations, or relaxation.
Gryffindor emphasises the traits of courage as well as "daring, nerve, and chivalry," and thus its members are generally regarded as brave, though sometimes to the point of recklessness. Notably, Gryffindor house contributed many members to Dumbledore's Army and the Order of the Phoenix. According to Phineas Nigellus Black, members of other houses, particularly Slytherin, sometimes feel that Gryffindors engage in "pointless heroics." Another Slytherin, Severus Snape, considered many Gryffindors to be self-righteous and arrogant, with no regard for rules.
However, this may be taken with a grain of salt, as Gryffindors and Slytherins have shared a fierce house rivalry since their founders, Godric Gryffindor andSalazar Slytherin, respectively, had a severe falling out over Slytherin's emphasis on blood purity. There might also be an element of jealousy;as Harry and his fellow Gryffindors tend to win in a lot of circumstances which, when viewed from a Slytherin's point of view, may be considered unfair. Examples of this include the last-minute points awarded by Headmaster Dumbledore at the Leaving Feast, which conveniently put Gryffindor ten points ahead of Slytherin in the 1991–1992 school year, and Harry being permitted by Professor McGonagall to have his own broomstick for the Gryffindor Quidditch team, even though first-years are not normally permitted their own broomstick.
Even members of other houses might have felt that Gryffindor received favouritism, considering that many saw Harry being chosen as the fourth competitor in theTriwizard Tournament as stealing Hufflepuff student Cedric Diggory's thunder unfairly.
Overall, however, the houses of Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff tended to side with Gryffindor in its rivalry with Slytherin. This was particularly notable during the Second Wizarding War — the members of Dumbledore's Army were from Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, and Ravenclaw, but lacked any Slytherins, and during the Battle of Hogwarts, the Slytherin students left while many students from the other three houses remained behind to fight against Lord Voldemort.
"Before Harry could speak, there was a massive movement. The Gryffindors in front of him had risen and stood facing, not Harry, but the Slytherins. Then the Hufflepuffs stood, and almost at the same moment, the Ravenclaws, all of them with their backs to Harry, all of them looking toward Pansy instead, and Harry, awestruck and overwhelmed, saw wands emerging everywhere, pulled from beneath cloaks and from under sleeves."
J.K. Rowling was once asked in an interview into which House would she Sort British politician and former Prime minister Gordon Brown, were she the Sorting Hat. She jokingly responded that she would sort him into Gryffindor, because of the red colours of his political party, which match the colours of Gryffindor.
Rubeus Hagrid stated in the first book that all the wizards who went bad were from Slytherin, however, the Gryffindor Peter Pettigrew disproved this. Hagrid, however, didn't know that Pettigrew was still alive and working for Voldemort. Another reason why this is odd is that, at the time, Sirius Black was believed to have gone bad (Hagrid's comments in the Three Broomsticks prove that he knew nothing of the truth in this instance), and he was also a Gryffindor. So Hagrid would have known of at least one Gryffindor who had 'gone bad'. He most likely did not mention this so that Harry did not try to find out more about his godfather, or it could have been 'Gryffindor propaganda', since Slytherin and Gryffindor are known rivals.
Gryffindor could possibly be derived from griffin, which is a creature in mythology with the body of a lion and the head of an eagle.
In Old English and Old High German dor means gate or door.
In French "d'or" means "of gold," one of the Gryffindor House colours, though it can also come from the Greek word "dora" meaning "gift".
A combination can be assumed; "Golden Gift of the Lion".
"Griffe" is the French word for "claw", which could refer to the claw of the lion.
"Gryffindor" could very well be explained by heraldry: "Gryffin" would then stand for the griffin beast, and the "[d]or" would refer to the metal tincture "[d'] or" (Middle English for "[of] gold", derived from French; corresponds to yellow).