Harry Potter exhibit on magic marks 20th anniversary of 1st book

A new British Library exhibition is tracing the history of magic to mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

More than 30,000 tickets bought so far from London's British Library

A gallery technician poses during a media preview of the 'Harry Potter: A History of Magic' exhibition at The British Library on Wednesday. (John Phillips/Getty Images)

A new British Library exhibition is tracing the history of magic to mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

With the orphaned boy wizard as guiding force, the exhibit opening Friday has broken records for advance sales at the London library. More than 30,000 tickets have been snapped up so far.

Harry Potter fans can see images of items featured in the British Library exhibit inspired by the series launched 20 years ago in public libraries across the United Kingdom, starting Friday.

The exhibit, "Harry Potter: A History Of Magic," looks at magic and the nature of belief, revealing that many of the things fans of the series thought were imaginary were actually based in fact — or folklore.

The show features rare books and manuscripts from around the world, together with cauldrons, broomsticks, crystal balls and potion manuals that offer insights into Rowling's inspiration for the Harry Potter books.

The exhibit will be at the British Library until Feb. 28.

With files from CBC News