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"Apparently Moody’s magical eye could see through solid wood, as well as out of the back of his head."
— Description[src]

Alastor Moody's magical eye acted as a replacement eye for him after he lost his original one in battle.[4]


Moody's magical eye

The device was a round, electric-blue eye that he placed into his empty eye socket. It could rotate 360 degrees in Moody's head and allowed him to see through anything, whether it be wood, invisibility cloaks, or even the back of his own head. It was this eye that earned Moody his nickname "Mad-Eye".[2][3]

It seems the eye was made particularly for Moody, since after Barty Crouch Jnr wore it, the eye began to malfunction, being stuck in mid-rotations when it returned to Moody's socket.[4]


First Wizarding War

Sometime during the First Wizarding War, Moody lost his eye during a clash with Death Eaters, and had the magical glass eye inserted as a replacement.[7]


In the 1989–1990 school year, Moody spotted Jacob's sibling under an invisibility cloak using his magical eye.[8]


Moody's magical eye zooming in on Harry Potter

"Damn it, it keeps getting stuck — ever since that scum wore it."
— The damage the eye suffered from Crouch Jnr wearing it[src]

During summer 1994, before Moody was able to take his one-year post as Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he was attacked and captured by Peter Pettigrew and Bartemius Crouch Jr. Using Polyjuice Potion, Crouch disguised himself as Moody and then took Moody's eye and leg as his own. Crouch was able to make good use of the eye himself throughout the year.[5]

After Moody was freed and regained his eye, the eye tended to get stuck in mid-rotations at times, due to Barty Crouch Jnr having worn it. Moody had to put the eye in water and clean it to get it to function properly once more.[4]


On 18 June 1996, Moody participated in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries. In the Death Chamber he duelled Antonin Dolohov, but was injured. Harry Potter accidentally stepped on his eye, which was rolling on the floor.[9]

Some days later, when meeting Harry Potter at King's Cross Station, Moody hid the magical eye with a bowler hat. When, however, he and the other members of the Order of the Phoenix issued a warning to the Dursleys regarding their treatment of Harry Potter, and Vernon Dursley asked if he looked like he could be intimidated, Moody pulled back the hat to reveal the eye, and Vernon leapt backward in horror, proving that he could indeed be intimidated.[10]


"There in its shadow he buried Mad-Eye Moody’s eye and marked the spot by gouging a small cross in the bark with his wand. It was not much, but Harry felt that Mad-Eye would have much preferred this to being stuck on Dolores Umbridge’s door."
— Harry burying Moody's eye out of respect[src]

Moody's Eye in the Ministry

In July 1997, Moody was killed by Lord Voldemort during the Battle of the Seven Potters.[11] Moody's corpse was recovered by the Death Eaters, and his magical eye was somehow taken by Dolores Umbridge, who used it to keep track of her subordinates in the British Ministry of Magic.[6]

When Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and Ron Weasley broke into the Ministry, Harry found the eye and he was revolted by how it was being used in Umbridge’s office.[6] He took it off its wall, which raised alarm.[6] After the trio fled from the Ministry and to the forest in Dartmoor near where the 1994 Quidditch World Cup was held, Harry buried the eye under the oldest, most gnarled and resilient-looking tree he could find, and marked the grave with a small cross. With this, Moody was given a proper burial, as far as was possible.[12]

Behind the scenes

  • In the novels, the magical eye replaced Moody's right eye. In the films, it replaced his left.
  • In the books, the eye has been depicted to be simply to be inserted into his empty eye socket. In the films, it requires some special holder strapped around the socket, making it look like an eye patch.
  • In the fourth film, the eye has shown to also have zoom-in capabilities.
  • In the fourth film, Moody is wearing his magical eye during Harry's trip into Albus Dumbledore's Pensieve, but in the fourth book during Harry's trip into the Pensieve, Moody does not have his magical eye, but two normal ones.
    • Furthermore in the film, Moody mentions that he lost his eye in a duel with Evan Rosier, while in the book Rosier instead cursed a piece of his nose off.
  • It's possible that Moody lost his eye to either Barty Crouch Jnr, Bellatrix, Rodolphus, or Rabastan Lestrange. Notably he still has both eyes during both Igor Karkaroff and Ludovic Bagman's trials which took place after Voldemort's downfall, yet he is said to have lost his eye battling Death Eaters. He isn't present during the trial of Barty Crouch Jnr and the Lestranges, making it possible that he participated in their arrest and was injured in the process.
  • It is unknown if this eye is unique to Moody, or if anyone can get one if they needed an eye-replacement, although the fact that it is powerful enough to see through the Cloak of Invisibility, one of the Deathly Hallows, suggests that it may be a rare artefact or, at least, not commonly found or produced.
  • It's interesting to note that Moody's eye had the ability to see through even Harry's Cloak of Invisibility, which according to legend granted the owner "true" invisibility. It's possible however that this particular ability of the Cloak remained inactive for generations, since knowledge of the Deathly Hallows is scarce at best, and only activated once Harry realised his heirloom's true power. It is possible that this was merely part of the legend.
    • As the origin of the Magical Eye was never clarified, it is also possible that the eye is itself an ancient and very powerful artifact, matching the Deathly Hallows in power if not in fame or symbolism.
    • Alternately, it may be that the cloak itself was not necessarily more powerful than others of its kind, though its magic was undeniably more resilient, and its powers were exaggerated in legend. This may be supported by the other times Harry was detected while wearing the cloak, such as Albus Dumbledore being able to see Harry through the cloak with a (silently cast) Homenum Revelio spell, and Harry's icon being shown on the Marauder's Map.
  • Although the magical eye was seen as a cameo on the door of Dolores Umbridge's office following Moody's death in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, there is no indication of Umbridge receiving it as a gift. Additionally, several parts were omitted- including Umbridge using the eye to spy on the Ministry workers, Harry learning it was there and retrieving it, as well as Harry burying the magical eye out of respect for the late Moody.
  • In LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4, Moody's eye is like his normal eye in colour, though larger than his normal eye and held up by a strap.
  • In LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7, Moody's eye is much larger and Harry and Ron as Cattermole and Runcorn must make a violin with the Severing Charm and lull the eye to sleep, then sneak in.


Notes and references

  1. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 5, Chapter 33 (Bye-Bye Bill)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 14 (The Unforgivable Curses)
  3. 3.0 3.1 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 25 (The Egg and the Eye)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 3 (The Advance Guard)
  5. 5.0 5.1 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 35 (Veritaserum)
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 13 (The Muggle-Born Registration Commission)
  7. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 30 (The Pensieve)
  8. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 6, Chapter 12 (Now You See Me)
  9. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 35 (Beyond the Veil)
  10. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 38 (The Second War Begins)
  11. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 5 (Fallen Warrior)
  12. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 14 (The Thief)