At least some content in this article is derived from information featured in: Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore & Harry Potter: Puzzles & Spells & Harry Potter: Magic Awakened & Harry Potter: Wizards Unite & Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery.
- "Albus Dumbledore was never proud or vain; he could find something to value in anyone, however apparently insignificant or wretched, and I believe that his early losses endowed him with great humanity and sympathy. I shall miss his friendship more than I can say, but my loss is as nothing compared to the Wizarding world’s. That he was the most inspiring and the best loved of all Hogwarts headmasters cannot be in question. He died as he lived: working always for the greater good and, to his last hour, as willing to stretch out a hand to a small boy with dragon pox as he was on the day that I met him."
- — Albus Dumbledore's obituary by Elphias Doge[src]
Professor Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, O.M. (First Class), Grand Sorc., D. Wiz., X.J. (sorc.), S. of Mag.Q. (c. Summer 1881 – 30 June, 1997) was an English half-blood wizard. He was the Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor, later the Transfiguration Professor, and later the Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He also served as Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards (?–1995) and Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot (?–1995; 1996–1997). A Muggle-supporting wizard, he was considered to have been the greatest wizard of modern times, perhaps of all time.
He was the son of Percival and Kendra Dumbledore, and the elder brother of Aberforth and Ariana. His father died in Azkaban when Albus was young, while his mother and sister were later accidentally killed. His early losses greatly affected him early on, even at his death, but, in turn, made him a better person.
While initially unable to directly act against Gellert Grindelwald due to their past Blood pact, the Ministry's surveillance of him, his love for Grindelwald, and his lingering guilt over his sister's death, Dumbledore sent Newt Scamander to New York to release the Thunderbird Frank, and later sent Newt to Paris to rescue Credence Barebone. After the tragic death of Leta Lestrange in Paris, Dumbledore became determined to contribute helpful advice to the resistance against Grindelwald, notably Newt, Theseus, Tina, Jacob, Yusuf, and Nagini in the Global wizarding war. Initially unbeknownst to Dumbledore, however, Grindelwald intended to use the former's alleged Obscurial relative, Aurelius Dumbledore, as a weapon against him.
Following the Global wizarding war and the end of the For the Greater Good revolution, regardless of Aurelius's fate, Dumbledore became most famous for defeating Grindelwald in arguably the most epic duel of all time. He also gained much more recognition with his involvement in the discovery of the twelve uses of dragon's blood and his work on alchemy with Nicolas Flamel.
It was through Dumbledore that resistance to the rise of Lord Voldemort was formed. He founded and led the Order of the Phoenix during the First Wizarding War. Following Voldemort's return and the start of the Second Wizarding War after the resignation of Cornelius Fudge, Dumbledore swiftly formed and led the second Order of the Phoenix. He would also support Jacob's sibling in the latter's quest for the Cursed Vaults, and consistently aid Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger during their first six years at Hogwarts, thus leading them to name Dumbledore's Army after him.
Due to the fact that he had a keen mind and legendary figure, Dumbledore became the only wizard that Voldemort ever feared. He was the wielder and the master of the Elder Wand from 1945 until 1997, and considered by many as the greatest Hogwarts Headmaster. As he was about to die by a cursed ring, Dumbledore planned his own death with Severus Snape. Per the plan, Dumbledore was killed by Snape during the Battle of the Astronomy Tower.
Though he was no longer alive at the time, it was through Dumbledore's manipulations that Voldemort was ultimately defeated, and lasting peace finally restored to the wizarding world. Dumbledore is the only Headmaster who was laid to rest at Hogwarts. A portrait of him still remains at Hogwarts. Harry Potter later named his second son Albus Severus Potter after him.
- 1 Biography
- 1.1 Early life (1881–1892)
- 1.2 Hogwarts years (1892–1899)
- 1.3 Tragedy and romance (1899)
- 1.4 Early career at Hogwarts (1910s–1925)
- 1.5 Global wizarding war (1926–1945)
- 1.6 Aftermath (1946–1969)
- 1.7 First Wizarding War (1970–1981)
- 1.8 Between the wars (1981–1995)
- 1.9 Second Wizarding War (1995–1997)
- 1.10 Post-mortem and legacy
- 2 Physical appearance
- 3 Personality and traits
- 4 Possessions
- 5 Magical abilities and skills
- 6 Career accomplishments
- 7 Relationships
- 7.1 Family
- 7.2 Gellert Grindelwald
- 7.3 Newt Scamander
- 7.4 Tom Riddle (Lord Voldemort)
- 7.5 Patricia Rakepick
- 7.6 Harry Potter
- 7.7 Rubeus Hagrid
- 7.8 Minerva McGonagall
- 7.9 Severus Snape
- 7.10 Elphias Doge
- 7.11 Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger
- 7.12 Weasley family
- 7.13 James and Lily Potter
- 7.14 Dursley family
- 7.15 Sirius Black
- 7.16 Remus Lupin
- 7.17 Alastor Moody
- 7.18 Fawkes
- 7.19 Order of the Phoenix
- 7.20 Hogwarts staff
- 7.21 Dumbledore's Army
- 7.22 Other friendships
- 7.23 Death Eaters
- 8 Etymology
- 9 Behind the scenes
- 10 Appearances
- 11 Notes and references
Early life (1881–1892)
- "You know the secret of my sister’s ill-health, what those Muggles did, what she became. You know how my poor father sought revenge, and paid the price, died in Azkaban. You know how my mother gave up her own life to care for Ariana. "
- — Dumbledore retells his early years to Harry[src]
Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore was born to Kendra and Percival Dumbledore in the summer of 1881, in the mainly wizarding village of Mould-on-the-Wold. The early years of Dumbledore's life were marked by tragedy when his younger sister, Ariana Dumbledore, was attacked by a group of Muggle boys, who saw her performing magic and were frightened by what they saw.
Ariana was left mentally and emotionally scarred by the event and her magical powers were left severely altered and would manifest themselves on rare occasions usually in random or destructive ways. Albus' father, Percival Dumbledore, was heartbroken and set out in search of his own brand of justice. He located the Muggle boys and attacked them, as they had his daughter. For this, Percival was sentenced to Azkaban where he later died, choosing the sentence over explaining why he had attacked the boys as it would have meant Ariana being taken away.
To escape the accusing eyes of the local community, Kendra Dumbledore moved her young family to the village of Godric's Hollow which, like Mould-on-the-Wold, was a part-wizarding village. Fearing - like her husband - that the ousting of her daughter's inability to control her magical ability would see her confined indefinitely to St Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries, Kendra rebuffed all her neighbours, with the eventual exception of Bathilda Bagshot, preferring to be left alone: and Albus learned not to mention his sister or father in public.
Hogwarts years (1892–1899)
- "By the end of his first year, he would never again be known as the son of a Muggle-hater, but as nothing more or less than the most brilliant student ever seen at the school."
- — Elphias Doge on Dumbledore's years as a Hogwarts student[src]
Dumbledore began attending Hogwarts in the autumn of 1892 and was Sorted into Gryffindor house. Dumbledore's first year was met with much whispering about his father's crime. Many of Albus' fellow students mistakenly believed that, like father like son, Albus too hated Muggles. Some praised his father's actions, hoping to gain his trust, but they would not find favour with the young Dumbledore this way. Though later in his young life, under the influence of his love for Gellert Grindelwald, some anti-Muggle prejudice did develop, but he soon saw the error of his intent.
He befriended a young Elphias Doge on his first day at Hogwarts; Doge was suffering from the aftermath of Dragon Pox at the time (greenish skin and pockmarks), which discouraged most from approaching him. Dumbledore, however, demonstrated his uncommon kindness and willingness to look past the surface and find inner beauty in people. Dumbledore also became very well-connected during his Hogwarts years, making notable friends such as Nicolas Flamel, Bathilda Bagshot, and Griselda Marchbanks, who marked him in his N.E.W.T.s for Charms and Transfiguration and later recalled that he did things with a wand that she had never seen before. He also had several of his papers published during his studies and exchanged letters with theoretician Adalbert Waffling. In his third year, Dumbledore presumably took Study of Ancient Runes and at least one other subject, which was known not to be Divination. During his fourth year, Dumbledore "accidentally" set the bed-curtains in his dormitory on fire (although he admitted that he had never liked them anyway).
Albus was made a prefect during his fifth year and was made Head Boy in his seventh year. At some point over the course of his school career, Dumbledore also won the Barnabus Finkley Prize for Exceptional Spell-Casting, became the British Youth Representative to the Wizengamot, and received the Gold Medal for Ground-Breaking Contribution to the International Alchemical Conference in Cairo, and was considered by his friend Elphias Doge to have been the most brilliant student to have ever attended the school.
Tragedy and romance (1899)
- "So that, when my mother died, and I was left the responsibility of a damaged sister and a wayward brother, I returned to my village in anger and bitterness. Trapped and wasted, I thought! And then, of course, he came."
- — Dumbledore discussing his harsh past[src]
After graduating from Hogwarts in June 1899, Dumbledore planned to take the traditional "Grand Tour" of the world with his friend Doge. However, tragedy ensued on the eve of the departure when Kendra Dumbledore was killed by an outburst of Ariana's uncontrollable magic, leaving Albus the head of his own broken family and now in charge of his younger siblings. Albus returned to Godric's Hollow full of bitter resentment at his situation, feeling trapped and wasted, although he refused to let Aberforth quit school and insisted he complete his education first before taking care of Ariana. Fortune finally appeared to shine on Dumbledore, however, when a foreigner arrived at their little village, by the name of Gellert Grindelwald. A young man around Albus's age, he lived for the next two months with his great-aunt, the celebrated magical historian and family friend of the Dumbledores, Bathilda Bagshot, who introduced the two soon after Grindelwald crossed her doorstep. Thrilled to realise that the newcomer was every bit as brilliant as himself, the two young men took to each other right away and quickly struck up a close friendship, unified by the revelation of Grindelwald's research into the existence and whereabouts of the fabled Deathly Hallows. Dumbledore also quickly became fascinated by Grindelwald's ideas of wizarding domination, obviously considering Grindelwald an unexpected new chance to show his own brilliance and come out of the local misery. Over the course of the two months Grindelwald stayed in Godric's Hollow, the two young men’s friendship became romantic, with Albus ignoring any misgivings he had about Gellert's dark intents by convincing himself the revolution they were planning to embark on was truly For the Greater Good, and that any harm caused would be repaid a thousandfold after its conclusion.
Albus's brother Aberforth, however, was disgusted with Albus for his plans and concerned over the fact that he and Ariana would have to be dragged along for the ride. Aberforth angrily confronted Albus over his neglect of Ariana over the past few weeks, bluntly telling him that he couldn't carry out his plans with Grindelwald, as he would have to take her with him. This brought Albus back to reality despite not wanting to hear the truth of the words his younger brother shouted at him. Grindelwald, however, was furious with Aberforth's intervention, and used the Cruciatus Curse on him in a fit of anger. Albus moved to defend his brother and a violent duel erupted between the three teenage boys. Ariana herself tried to intervene in the fight but she couldn't due to her erratic abilities, and in the ensuing chaos was hit by a stray curse and died. No one knew whose curse it was that killed her, but Grindelwald fled immediately, as he already had a bad record back home, leaving the devastated Albus and Aberforth behind. Aberforth resented Albus and they had a strained relationship, with Aberforth punching Albus and breaking his nose at Ariana's funeral. Aberforth never knew of the great guilt and regret Albus would feel for the rest of his life about his part in Ariana's death.
Early career at Hogwarts (1910s–1925)
Shortly thereafter, Albus, who had been exchanging owls with the famous researcher as far back when he had been a student at Hogwarts, travelled to France and spent some time in Paris studying the ancient art and science of alchemy under the tutelage of Nicholas Flamel. He presumably did so in order to both give his brother some space, as well as to get away for a bit and spend his time grieving more productively than he otherwise would have done simply wallowing in his own misery. It is unknown when exactly he returned to Britain, but around the time he did, Albus had become intrigued with the study of dragon's blood, and was ultimately credited with the discovery of no less than twelve new uses for it; (even though a wizard by the name of Ivor Dillonsby would later claim that he had already discovered eight of them when Dumbledore "borrowed" his notes,)) an accomplishment that earned him widespread recognition and ultimately played no small role in the subsequent offer he received of a teaching position at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Having always had a deep fondness for the old school and felt drawn towards teaching even as a student, Albus was happy to accept.
And so it was that Albus Dumbledore returned to Hogwarts Castle, not to learn this time, but to teach. Burdened by the secret knowledge of Grindelwald's imminent rise to power and wanting to rectify past mistakes, it was natural, perhaps, that he felt drawn towards the job of Defence Against the Dark Arts instructor, a position in which he could most easily prepare his charges for the dangers he knew one day would come. Albus, who would henceforth come to be known to successive generations of students as ‘Professor Dumbledore’, was granted Classroom 3C on the third-floor and an office. Around the same time, the bookish young educator also procured and read a copy of The Predictions of Tycho Dodonus.
At some point early on in his teaching career, Albus became aware of the existence of an ancient magical artefact of unknown origin within the school; a looking-glass with a grim history that was far more revealing than most. Having once been kept out in the open where hundreds of people could discover the apparent delights of the Mirror of Erised, it had since been given a new home after a large number of them had become so entranced by what they had seen as to waste away before it. Some had reportedly even gone mad; not knowing if what it showed them was real or even possible. He eventually found it, however, safely tucked away in a hidden room on the uppermost floor of the castle that would only reveal itself to someone if they were in great need of it. The device, however, which upon closer examination turned out to have been bewitched with the tantalising power of showing those who stared into its surface a vision of their heart's deepest desire, proved interesting rather than useful. Intrigued by the mirror as a fascinating piece of magical ingenuity, Albus was nevertheless painfully aware that his greatest yearning at the time was for something impossible, and that clinging on to a wish that could never – and for obvious reasons ought never – to be fulfilled could only hurt him, Dumbledore eventually decided to leave the mirror where it was, covered by a curtain of black velvet. It would take many years before he went to visit it again.
Even though the freshly hired instructor would henceforth largely busy himself with the training of young witches and wizards, Albus would continue to keep in touch with Nicolas Flamel, alongside whom he would eventually achieve a number of advancements in the field of alchemy over the years as their relationship blossomed from that of student-and-mentor, to that of an equal partnership and near life-long friendship. At some point after this, Albus would visit his old friend and pose for a photograph in Flamel's workshop alongside his celebrated mentor, with many of his alchemical tools and equipment being visible in the background, as well as crystal ball and a book with a phoenix on the cover.
In the 1910s, Dumbledore taught Hufflepuff Newton Scamander and Slytherin Leta Lestrange. One of his lessons involved confronting a Boggart and learning the spell to banish it. When Newt's Boggart turned into a desk, Dumbledore commented on its unexpected nature and kindly inquired why it took this form: Newt confessed that his greatest fear was being stuck working in an office. After Newt successfully dispatched the Boggart, Dumbledore encouraged Leta to take her turn, reassuring her that being afraid of something wasn't shameful; everyone was afraid of something. The form of Leta's Boggart surprised both Dumbledore and the entire class: a white sheet containing an undistinguishable, slight form floating through a dark blue glow. The event badly shook Leta.
In 1913, one of Leta's experiments with a Jarvey went too far endangering the life of another student. Newt decided to take the blame and was sentenced to expulsion. Dumbledore, however, argued strongly on his behalf. Whether Newt's expulsion was enforced or not is unknown, but Dumbledore succeeded in at least allowing Newt to keep his wand.
During his time at Hogwarts, Dumbledore also developed close relationships and friendships with wizards and witches throughout the world. Among these friends, he counted the French alchemist Nicolas Flamel and Ilvermorny Charms Professor Eulalie Hicks. He maintained close contact with these friends in the form of enchanted books they all possessed which allowed them to speak despite the distance. The British Ministry of Magic, which was already suspicious of Dumbledore because of his past connection to Grindelwald, was wary of these relationships, believing that he used these contacts as spies to allow him to act as an independent authority to theirs, and maintained a close watch on Dumbledore and his allies. Chief among Dumbledore's rivals within the Ministry was Torquil Travers, the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, who never tried to hide his dislike for the Hogwarts teacher.
Global wizarding war (1926–1945)
Throughout the early days of the global wizarding war, a series of devastating attacks was perpetrated by Gellert Grindelwald and his cadre of followers across Europe, and rumours begun circulating that his former friend had procured a wand of immense power, which Albus, who was privy to the aspiring revolutionary's Quest for the Deathly Hallows, understood to mean that he had successfully obtained the Elder Wand. Sometime afterwards, word reached Albus through his extensive contacts that Grindelwald had had another vision: He had seen a powerful Obscurus kill the man he feared above all else; and even though the pact they had made all those years ago not to fight one another had ultimately worked in Grindelwald's favour by effectively preventing Albus from coming after him, it was clear that he still harboured fears that Dumbledore might still find a way to overcome it and move against him. Only too aware that he was quite possibly the only wizard alive capable of bringing a definitive end to Grindelwald's reign of terror, however, Dumbledore continued to monitor and to try to anticipate Grindelwald's activities in the hopes of intercepting the attempted recruitment of the Obscurus.
It was only years later, around December of 1926 that Dumbledore's patient monitoring of Grindelwald's movements through second-hand accounts paid off; when he heard about the series of magical disturbances that were causing severe devastation throughout the city of New York that risked the exposure of the wizarding world. Having correctly guessed that the mysterious attacks to be the work of a powerful Obscurial and, forever mindful of the fact that if he could figure out where the prophesied entity was located, so could Grindelwald. Hence, Albus decided to arrange for his plans to be thwarted. To this end, he contacted his old student, Newt Scamander, who had become a Magizoologist in the employment of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures at the Ministry of Magic in London and had been travelling throughout the world, locating and rescuing magical creatures from his fellow wizards; whether it was because they were greedy poachers seeking to profit off of them, or otherwise targeted them for the perceived threat they posed to the Statute of Secrecy.
Dumbledore told Newt of a Thunderbird that was being held captive in Egypt, knowing he would not stand for such an injustice and would not only rescue him but also return him to his native Arizona. To accomplish this, Newt would have to pass through the Muggle customs in New York; where his visit would co-concur with both the Obscurial attacks and Grindelwald's scheme to locate, identify and ally himself with the culprit. Trusting Newt to do the right thing and protect the Obscurial from Grindelwald, it turned out that his confidence in Newt's character and ability was well placed: Newt's involvement resulted not only in the discovery of Credence Barebone, the most powerful Obscurus ever recorded (the only one to survive into adulthood), but also in the capture of Grindelwald, who had been disguised as a high-ranking official at MACUSA by the name of Percival Graves to find the Obscurus. While there, however, Newt got in trouble when a number of the magical creatures his case escaped and ran loose in areas of the city inhabited mainly by Non-magical people.
For his role in the incident in New York, as well as his reluctance and evasiveness in providing his superiors at the Ministry details about why he had been in New York in the first place, Newt was banned from travelling internationally by the Ministry, a ban they offered to lift if he confessed that Dumbledore had been the one to send him to New York. Although he realised that Dumbledore had covertly sent him to New York, Newt remained loyal to his old teacher and refused to confess his role in the affair. Even in later years, when the rumours were published by Rita Skeeter in a biography of Newt called Man or Monster? The TRUTH about Newt Scamander, he continued to deny that Dumbledore was responsible for his trip to New York in the foreword of a new edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
Moving against Gellert Grindelwald
In 1927, when Grindelwald had escaped, Dumbledore, knowing that he would not be able to fight him due to their blood pact, met with Newt in London to ask him for help. He sent his former student to Paris to find Credence Barebone, who had survived his supposed destruction in New York.
Albus told Newt who it was thought that Credence's true identity was. He then gave Scamander a card which directed straight to a 'safe house' in Paris, where he could go if he needed to hide for a time.
The rumours of Newt's potential travel to France reached the British Ministry of Magic, and a delegation of Aurors, including Newt's brother Theseus Scamander and Torquil Travers, was sent to Hogwarts Castle to question Dumbledore. Travers demanded that Dumbledore fight Grindelwald for him, but Albus refused, which angered Travers to the point that he cuffed Dumbledore into Admonitors and forbade him from ever teaching Defence Against the Dark Arts again. Dumbledore turned to Theseus, who was last in leaving the classroom, and warned him that if he'd ever trusted him, he should not let Travers send him to Grindelwald's rally.
Moments later, in one of the classrooms, he met Leta Lestrange, who was also in the delegation, but had separated herself from the group of Aurors. Leta accused Albus of being the only one who did not consider her bad in her youth and stated that he was wrong about this. Dumbledore mentioned that rumours about her brother Corvus Lestrange, who was now believed to be Credence Barebone, must have been painful for her, which angered the witch, who interrupted his statement and added that he could not understand her, because he did not lose his brother. Dumbledore only replied that years ago he lost his sister, Ariana. Ending the conversation, Albus advised her to get rid of regret because it was his inseparable companion since the death of his sister.
One night, Dumbledore went to the Room of Requirement, where the Mirror of Erised was stored. At first, to his joy, he saw an old memory he still valued of himself and Grindelwald from the time when their friendship was at its peak that led to them sealing their bond with a blood pact in a barn, swearing to never fight each other. Dumbledore also saw Grindelwald himself from the present. Albus was longing for this meeting, while at the same time being very afraid of it, because he knew that he was the only person who could stop Grindelwald, and he could face the truth about who Ariana's killer was.
After the Battle of the Lestrange family Mausoleum, Dumbledore was waiting for Newt at Hogwarts. Albus expressed his sadness over Leta's death at Grindelwald's hands. Then, the magizoologist gave him an object stolen by Newt's niffler. It was the pendant of his former teacher's blood pact with Grindelwald, leaving Albus to ponder if he could destroy it, which would allow him to finally participate in the war and defeat the Dark Wizard once and for all. Dumbledore asked Newt if his niffler would like a cup of tea and they went off to talk about what must be done.
Sometime in the 1930s, Albus knew the dangers of Gellert Grindelwald and were growing, he enlisted Newton Scamander to assemble an army, filled with intrepid wizardkind, while also trying to figure out a way to destory the Blood pact created by his lover and him in their youth.
Meeting Tom Riddle
- Tom Riddle: "Who are you?"
- Albus Dumbledore: "I have told you. My name is Professor Dumbledore and I work at a school called Hogwarts. I have come to offer you a place at my school — your new school, if you would like to come."
- Tom Riddle: "You can’t kid me! The asylum, that’s where you’re from, isn’t it? ‘Professor,’ yes, of course — well, I’m not going, see? That old cat’s the one who should be in the asylum. I never did anything to little Amy Benson or Dennis Bishop, and you can ask them, they’ll tell you!"
- Albus Dumbledore: "I am not from the asylum. I am a teacher and, if you will sit down calmly, I shall tell you about Hogwarts. Of course, if you would rather not come to the school, nobody will force you —"
- — Dumbledore offering a young Tom Riddle a place at Hogwarts[src]
At some point in his career, Albus also became involved with the recruitment of students for Hogwarts, becoming a special messenger for the school whose job it was to visit the young witches and wizards whose names appeared in the Book of Admittance and came from Muggle families in order to explain to their parents that magic existed and to deliver the acceptance letter in person. Most prominent among the students he recruited was Tom Riddle in 1938, who resided at Wool's Orphanage in London. For the purposes of fulfilling his duty as the school's messenger, Dumbledore wrote to the matron, Mrs Cole, to schedule a meeting with her to discuss arrangements for the boy's future. As the custodian of an institution, however, rather than the child's legal guardian, she was not rendered exempt from the Statute of Secrecy, and so Albus were purposefully vague in his reasons for wanting to meet the boy. Thinking he might be a family member wanting to claim him, she accepted the preposition, and at the agreed upon time and date, Professor Dumbledore presented himself at the establishment in question. Shown in by one of the employees, Albus was formally introduced to Mrs Cole, who invited him to join him in her office to talk about the reasons for his visit. The news that Tom had been accepted to attend the school where Albus taught came as a surprise to Mrs Cole, who at Dumbledore's request recounted Tom Riddle's history at the orphanage, mostly notably the circumstances of Tom’s birth, his anti-social behaviour and his extraordinary bad influence on the other children; including some very nasty incidents that resulted in the death of a pet rabbit and a gathering with several of his peers in a cave that left them traumatised.
Once it became clear that Albus would not be dissuaded from his mission, however, Mrs Cole agreed to let him meet the prospective student and escorted him to the upper floor to the boy's room, where the two were formally introduced. Initially suspicious and hostile towards him, Albus found himself having to assure the boy that he was not, in fact, a doctor that had come to lock him up at the asylum; showing his awareness of the matron's suspicions about his behaviour, and was finally able to extend the invitation to Hogwarts and inform him that he was, in fact, a wizard. And though he was impressed to hear, as Mrs Cole's testimony suggested, how well-developed his powers were for such a young wizard, as well as how his degree of control over them was such that he had already begun to use them intentionally. It was also during this encounter that Albus first learned that the boy was a Parselmouth; a fact that he did not find nearly as concerning as the boy's "obvious instincts for cruelty, secrecy and domination". Upon discovering that Riddle had stolen from the other children at the orphanage, Dumbledore admonished him for his behaviour and instructed him return the items to their rightful owners and apologise for taking them, warning him that he had exercised his abilities in a manner that would be unacceptable at Hogwarts, should he agree to attend. Thereafter, Dumbledore provided him with enough information to find Diagon Alley and Platform Nine and Three-Quarters, as well as a stipend from school funds so that he could purchase his books and other equipment. On account of his conduct around his peers, Dumbledore became immediately suspicious of and resolved to keep a close eye on him during his studies at the school.. At some point after this, Dumbledore partook of Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans, at which point he had the unfortunate experience of tasting one flavoured like vomit. Ever since then, he lost his liking for them.
Professor of Transfiguration
- Albus Dumbledore: "What are you doing, wandering around this late, Tom?"
- Tom Riddle: "I had to see the headmaster, sir."
- Albus Dumbledore: "Well, hurry off to bed. Best not to roam the corridors these days. Not since…"
- — Dumbledore speaking to a young Tom Riddle at Hogwarts[src]
At an unknown point in or before 1943, Dumbledore became the Professor of Transfiguration. In 1943, several Muggle-born students were mysteriously petrified by a beast rumoured to have been released by the Heir of Slytherin from the mythical Chamber of Secrets. Indeed, the final victim of the beast, Myrtle Warren, was actually killed; this act seemed likely to ensure the permanent closure of the school, forcing Riddle to go back to the orphanage. While Dumbledore rightly suspected Riddle was behind the attacks, the aspiring Dark Wizard expertly framed Gryffindor student Rubeus Hagrid as the perpetrator.
Riddle was able to pass off Hagrid's tamed Acromantula, Aragog, as the beast attacking students, resulting in Hagrid's expulsion and ensuring that Hogwarts remained open. Dumbledore was never able to uncover hard evidence implicating Riddle, however, he nonetheless kept a very close watch over Riddle, preventing him from opening the Chamber of Secrets again during his remaining years at Hogwarts. He was also able to convince the Headmaster to allow Hagrid to remain at the school as the groundskeeper-in-training.
Defeat of Gellert Grindelwald
As Dumbledore was educating young wizards and witches, Gellert Grindelwald was still at large in Europe, building up his army, and had already found one of the Deathly Hallows, the Elder Wand, which he used to continue terrorising the continent. Initially prevented from opposing Grindelwald directly because of the Blood pact they once made, even once that was destroyed, Dumbledore still felt conflicted about going after his old friend. In spite of himself, he still felt a lingering love for the man Grindelwald had been, or rather, the man he had once convinced himself Grindelwald was and/or could be. More than anything, however, Dumbledore feared facing Grindelwald. While secure in his ability to defeat him in battle if it came to it, more than anything, Dumbledore was afraid Grindelwald could reveal to him that it had in fact been he himself who had cast the curse that killed Ariana. Having delayed pursuing him as long as he could, however, at the height of Grindelwald's power, in 1945, Albus could no longer in good conscience turn a blind eye to the many atrocities of Grindelwald and his followers, and so he finally tracked his old friend down. Upon finding Grindelwald, Dumbledore engaged him in what would later be widely considered the greatest duel ever fought between two wizards. Dumbledore defeated Grindelwald and then brought him before the authorities of the magical world, and Grindelwald was imprisoned in the uppermost cell at Nurmengard, while Dumbledore kept the Elder Wand for himself. Celebrated worldwide as the hero who put to rest the Global wizarding war and ended Grindelwald's For the Greater Good revolution of wizarding dominance over Muggles, Dumbledore was awarded the Order of Merlin (First Class), by Leonard Spencer-Moon's administration.
Turning down power
Resuming his career following this legendary event, Dumbledore taught several other students over the years, some of whom would become staunchly loyal to him and what he stood for, whereas others would become enemies, allying themselves with Lord Voldemort in the latter's rise to power. Among these students were future Order of the Phoenix members Arthur Weasley and Molly Prewett, Death Eaters-to-be Bellatrix Black and Lucius Malfoy, as well as neutral parties, such as the one-day world-famous Curse-Breaker Patricia Rakepick. During this time, he was offered the position of Minister for Magic several times, but he turned down the offer every time, remembering how his quest for power had been his weakness in the past. It was around this time that he encountered a house-elf named Hokey. Before she died, he took a memory from her, in which Tom Riddle showed his interest towards the magical antiques of a recently deceased Hepzibah Smith. This memory was not sufficient evidence to show Hokey's innocence, as it only proved that Riddle was aware of the artefacts' existence.
Becoming Headmaster of Hogwarts
By the mid-1960s, the amount of Dark magical activity across the country was growing steadily, and while few knew what was behind the mounting attacks and sightings, this was but the precursor to Lord Voldemort's first rise to power. Aware that it was only a matter of time before his former student made his presence and intent known to the wizarding community as a whole, and already preparing to oppose him, by the time the Death Eaters began recruiting Dark creatures to help them overthrow the Ministry of Magic, Dumbledore already had spies in their midst reporting to him. It was through these contacts that Dumbledore first learned of the attack on a young boy by the name of Remus Lupin, who had been infected with lycanthropy by a Fenrir Greyback. Rather than trying to manage his condition, however, the attacker had instead made it his mission in life to infect as many people as possible and was harbouring grand plans of raising an army of werewolves big enough to take over the wizarding community; and even earned quite a bit of notoriety for targeting children with the intent of raising them away from other witches and wizards in order to teach them to despise regular humans. Knowing how this would have had to have impacted the Lupin family, the old Transfiguration teacher could not help but be sympathetic to their predicament. As fortune would have it, however, a blessing in disguise presented itself when the Hogwarts Board of Governors was faced with the decision of finding a suitable candidate to succeed Armando Dippet in the post of Headmaster and concluded that Professor Dumbledore was the best man for the job.
This, in turn, granted him the authority to properly accommodate the Lupins when the time came for Remus to attend school. Shortly after Dumbledore assumed the position, by which time he had already relocated to the Headmaster's Tower and filled his new study with a number of curious magical instruments that had formerly been housed in his old classroom, Tom Riddle, now known exclusively as Lord Voldemort, approached him with the same request he had made to Dippet before him, to be allowed to return to Hogwarts as a teacher. Dumbledore, who knew of Voldemort's illicit activities since he left Hogwarts and suspected that he might have meant to use the position as means of recruiting more followers, turned down his application. This led Voldemort to angrily jinx the position of Defence Against the Dark Arts instructor, preventing anyone from holding the position for more than a single school year. What was more; while being entrusted the stewardship of the school was, in and of itself, an honour and a privilege, it also meant that he was henceforth expected to shoulder the responsibility of making all the difficult decisions that came with leadership.
On such occasions, Dumbledore would step out into the Clock Tower Courtyard, where he found the quiet, starry night and the crisp air helpful in regard to putting one's troubles in perspective, and developed a habit of pacing around his new office a lot, especially in times when the security of the castle was breached. On occasion, he would also see students in his office, be it because of a misdemeanour that had to be addressed, or because one of the pupils sought redress during conflicts with their peers, such as Bertha Jorkins. At some point following his appointment, Professor Dumbledore began to offer to help students with their homework, whom he would meet every Friday in Classroom E-13. Fond of festivities in general, he would also usually stand for the entertainment during the annual Hallowe'en Feast in the Great Hall.
As the day neared when young Remus Lupin would be of an eligible age to begin his magical education, Dumbledore wasted little time in making the necessary preparations for the young man's arrival: To this end, Dumbledore arranged for a house to be built a little way above the rest of the nearby Hogsmeade; perched atop a hill overlooking the village. Once finished, the Headmaster applied the appropriate spells to provide Remus with a safe and secure place for his transformations that could contain even a fully grown werewolf, if necessary. Next, he arranged for an underground passage to be made on the school grounds to give Remus an easy and discreet way of accessing the building when necessary and had a Whomping Willow planted over the opening; both to hide it from view, and as a security measure to stop anyone from coming across the future pupil whilst he was dangerous. Shortly before 10 March 1971, Dumbledore showed up unannounced at the doorstep of Lyall and Hope Lupin to invite their son to attend school. Well aware that their initial reaction, namely to try and keep him from entering their home, stemmed from fear more than anything else, the Headmaster took the liberty of finding his own way into the house. Five minutes later, Dumbledore was sitting on their living room floor by the fireplace, eating crumpets and playing Gobstones with Remus.
After explaining to the three of them that he was aware of their situation and, more importantly, that as far as he was concerned, there was no reason why Remus should not be able to attend Hogwarts, as long as special precautions were taken to ensure the safety of both Remus and the other students, a mutual understanding was reached, and it was eventually agreed that young Mr Lupin would indeed present himself at Hogwarts Castle for the Start-of-Term. This would forever earn Dumbledore Remus' gratitude, as most others would simply have forbidden the boy from even setting foot in the school. When Severus Snape found out Remus' secret, Dumbledore forbade him from repeating it to anyone.
First Wizarding War (1970–1981)
After Lord Voldemort started his first rise to power in 1970, Dumbledore founded the Order of the Phoenix, a secret organisation of witches and wizards willing to risk their lives to fight Voldemort and his Death Eaters. As the only wizard Voldemort was ever truly afraid of, Dumbledore was the perfect leader of the organisation and was a significant contributor to the war effort.
Later on in the war, Dumbledore was approached by another person who also wanted a job at Hogwarts: Sybill Trelawney, who applied to become the new professor of Divination, a subject Dumbledore disliked and barely considered a part of necessary education for young wizards and witches. Dumbledore gave her a chance because she was the great-great-granddaughter of the celebrated Seer Cassandra Trelawney. To his disappointment, when he was interviewing Sybill at the Hog's Head, he came to the conclusion that she was not a real Seer. However, as Dumbledore was about to leave, Trelawney fell into a real trance and made a prophecy about the birth of the one that would have the power to vanquish the Dark Lord, who would be born to those "who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies". This astonished Dumbledore, but as it turned out, the Death Eater Severus Snape had overheard most of the prophecy but had been caught in the act of spying and ejected from the tavern by Aberforth Dumbledore. Dumbledore hired Trelawney in order to protect her from the Death Eaters.
The Cursed Vaults and R
In the 1970s, a secretive dark organisation known as R was actively in the persuit of "enlightenment and immortality". Three Hogwarts students, Jacob, Duncan Ashe and Olivia Green were recruited and involved in their plot of breaking into the Cursed Vaults for the supposed treasure inside. Throughout the students' quest, several curses were unleashed within Hogwarts Castle, including the cursed ice, which disappeared when the Vault of Ice was broken into.
Dumbledore recognised the talents of Jacob, including him being a Legilimens, and worked hard to protect him, as well as Hogwarts students in general, from R. Unfortunately, at one point, Duncan Ashe attempted to brew a particularly potent Erumpent Potion, which led to his death. During an interrogation, Jacob falsely admitted that he had pressured his friend into doing so. In light of Jacob's confession, Dumbledore had no other choice but to expel him from the school.
The students' zealous search for the Cursed Vaults also led Dumbledore to discovering R, but before he could make an effective move against the organisation, Jacob went mysteriously missing and rumours came in that he had even joined the Death Eaters. Dumbledore subsequently tasked Alastor Moody, an Auror, with investigating R.
Between the wars (1981–1995)
Fall of the Dark Lord
- Minerva McGonagall: "As I say, even if You-Know-Who has gone —"
- Albus Dumbledore: "My dear Professor, surely a sensible person like yourself can call him by his name? All this ‘You-Know-Who’ nonsense — for eleven years I have been trying to persuade people to call him by his proper name: Voldemort. It all gets so confusing if we keep saying ‘You-Know-Who.’ I have never seen any reason to be frightened of saying Voldemort’s name."
- Minerva McGonagall: "I know you haven’t. But you’re different. Everyone knows you’re the only one You-Know- oh, all right, Voldemort, was frightened of."
- Albus Dumbledore: "You flatter me. Voldemort had powers I will never have."
- Minerva McGonagall: "Only because you’re too — well — noble to use them."
- — Albus Dumbledore and Minerva McGonagall discussing Voldemort's downfall in Privet Drive[src]
Still, the wizarding war raged beyond the walls of Hogwarts: Shortly before the Potters' deaths, Dumbledore discovered that James's Cloak of Invisibility was, in fact, one of the Deathly Hallows. Although Dumbledore had long given up his desire to unite the Hallows and become Master of Death, he could not resist the thought of studying the Cloak. To that end, he borrowed it from James while James and Lily were in hiding. Later, Severus Snape approached Dumbledore, having already told Voldemort about the Prophecy. Snape was shocked by the fact that Voldemort had concluded that the prophecy was about Harry Potter, the son of James Potter, and Snape's own beloved childhood friend, Lily Evans. Dumbledore agreed, on the basis that Snape worked as a double agent for the Order. Dumbledore made arrangements to ensure the safety of the three; he advised them to stay hidden in their house in Godric's Hollow, which was protected by a Fidelius Charm. However, their Secret-Keeper (believed by Dumbledore and everyone else to be Sirius Black, but was in truth Peter Pettigrew) betrayed them, resulting in James and Lily's deaths at Voldemort's hands. However, as Voldemort attempted to murder Harry the curse backfired due to the protection provided by Lily Potter's love for her son and destroyed his body. This unfortunate occurrence provided Dumbledore with ownership of two of the Hallows, having already confirmed James' old cloak was indeed the one of legend.
Presumably well aware that Lord Voldemort wasn't truly vanquished, Dumbledore made sure that Harry would be kept safe with his family, the Dursleys, despite them not being selected as his guardians in the event of James and Lily's death, as his spells ensured that Voldemort could not harm Harry there as long as he could have a home with those with whom he was related by blood. He convinced Snape to help him protect Harry, although years later Dumbledore secretly planned to allow Voldemort to kill Harry in the end, which would destroy the piece of Voldemort's soul inside Harry. However, he also hoped to influence Harry into such a person who would willingly sacrifice his life for the greater good, allowing him the chance to choose between life and death in the end, guessing correctly the significance of such an act. Shortly thereafter, Dumbledore gave Snape employment at Hogwarts as the Potions master, and later defended Snape against the Ministry of Magic, who were rounding up and arresting remaining Death Eaters. Dumbledore attended many Death Eater trials, including that of the Lestranges and Barty Crouch Jnr. He was also a witness to Igor Karkaroff's testimony which secured his release from Azkaban in return for the names of fellow Death Eaters. With Harry safe and certain members of the Order of the Phoenix and allies of their cause keeping watch over him and reporting back to Dumbledore, he continued his work as the brilliant if eccentric Headmaster of his beloved school.
At the Start-of-Term Feast during the 1984–1985 school year, Professor Dumbledore witnessed the Sorting ceremony of first-year students, including Charlie Weasley, Nymphadora Tonks, and Jacob's younger sibling, after which he stood behind the Owl Lecturn and gave a traditional welcoming speech.
At some point during the school year, Dumbledore was informed by Professor Severus Snape about cursed ice resurfacing in Hogwarts Castle, and a Locked Room which possibly contained the source of it.
After Jacob's sibling and Merula Snyde duelled in the Courtyard without permission or supervision, Dumbledore introduced the students to the Hogwarts Duelling Club in the Dungeons, where duelling could be practised safely. He made certain to impress on the students how the destruction caused by these duels was left there so other students who wanted to duel could see how dangerous duelling could be, and consider the implications of casting unfriendly spells.
Before this year's Hallowe'en Feast, several students volunteered to help Dumbledore with decorations, such as the carving of jack-o'-lanterns and crafting hats for a troupe of dancing skeletons. Near the end of the feast, however, the school was under attack by a pack of werewolves, and after Dumbledore successfully removed five that had almost overran Hagrid's Hut, he came back to the Training Grounds in time to save Jacob's sibling and another unconscious student from three more, including Fenrir Greyback, who caught the scent of Dumbledore and left. The Headmaster examined the unconscious student, who was Chiara Lobosca, and concluded that she had not been bitten. He then informed the Ministry of Magic about the incident, and as a result, Cecil Lee was sent to investigate.
A month later, the castle was under another attack by Greyback's army, during which Chiara fought as a werewolf to protect Jacob's sibling. The Headmaster came to know this identity of Chiara, and extended her the same offer he had done Remus Lupin years before. When this whole incident was over, Dumbledore held another Hallowe'en Feast to finish what had been left out.
Before Rubeus Hagrid's birthday, Dumbledore decided to throw him a surprise birthday party. He first contacted Jacob's sibling, who was already a friend of Hagrid, and then went to find Amos Diggory, who agreed to drop by the castle with a selection of magical creatures for them to pick from as a birthday gift. In order to distract Hagrid, Dumbledore asked him to meet at the Training Grounds and help take care of some "urgent business" in Hogsmeade, while Jacob's sibling stayed behind and babysat Fang. When they returned, Dumbledore instructed Jacob's sibling to invite Professor Snape next, even if they had to bribe him with a gift. The birthday party was held as scheduled and turned out to be a huge success.
Around Christmas, students continued to help Dumbledore with festive decorations. This tradition would be continued for the following few years.
When Dumbledore found out Jacob's sibling and their friends had broken into the Locked Room, he talked to Jacob's sibling in the Courtyard. Instead of handing out punishment, Dumbledore awarded them 100 House points for their brave acts. Nevertheless, he reminded them that the impact on others should be kept in mind in their coming years.
He was present at the Start-of-Term Feast, delivering his welcoming speech while also offering a word of caution. Ben Copper was soon found missing, and Dumbledore was possibly paid a visit by Professor McGonagall, who informed him the secret message Jacob's sibling had found in the Locked Room. After Dumbledore was gone, he possibly received an owl from one of the professors alerting him to the activities of R.
When he was back at Hogwarts, he found that the Vault of Ice had again been broken into by Jacob's sibling and their friends, which led to the disappearance of the cursed ice. He required to see them in the Headmaster's Office and rewarded them another 50 points, but warned them never to go near the Cursed Vaults again.
At some point while he was at Hogwarts, the Headmaster presided over this year's Teacher Appreciation Celebration, with the Guest of Honour being McGonagall. At another point, Dumbledore arranged for Olympe Maxime, the Headmistress of Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, to visit Hogwarts to discuss school matters, and Maxime brought Aurélie Dumont, a student of her who came to search for Nicolas Flamel's chalice. When Dumbledore met Aurélie, he talked about his own experience of learning Alchemy with Nicolas Flamel and denied the existence of such item at Hogwarts, but nevertheless encouraged her not to give up on her goals.
Before the Start-of-Term Feast of the 1986–1987 school year, Professor Dumbledore spoke to the students, confirming the existance of the Cursed Vaults and imposing a blanket ban on all future attempts to look for the rest of them. It was most likely also Dumbledore who instructed Jacob's sibling's Head of House to not permit them to go on Hogsmeade trips due to them breaking school rules and not focusing on their studies.
During a third-year Herbology class, a Boggart manifested in one of the greenhouses, assuming the form of a werewolf and terrifying students. Professor Pomona Sprout reported the incident to Dumbledore immediately after taking care of the Boggart.
At some point during the school year, Dumbledore was approached by Merula Snyde, who showed him the Wit-Sharpening Potion she had allegedly been working on. He also spoke to Jacob's sibling, who was disguised as Professor Snape, about various businesses. During the conversation, he even indirectly revealed the identity of the Curse-Breaker he had been finding in the past year, who had some school years overlapping with Snape's. Though he wasn't aware of who he was actually talking to, he still figured something was off. When "Professor Snape" asked Merula to come forward and admit her wrongdoing of claiming credit for the potion actually brewed by Penny Haywood, Dumbledore invited Penny up on the podium to receive the credit she deserved. It was also at this moment that he realised the true identity of "Snape". He awarded them 10 House points for their loyalty and cheerfully advised them to leave before the effects of the Polyjuice Potion wore off.
Before Dumbledore left Hogwarts again to search for Rakepick, he gave Rita Skeeter "periodical permission" to visit Hogwarts Castle to observe the students, and to invite them to partake in a "friendly competition" where the winner would receive a first-page article in the Daily Prophet. During this search, Dumbledore was finally able to track down Rakepick, who was investigating some ancient ruins that had recently been discovered beneath Castelobruxo. Unable to leave Brazil until her work there was finished, an arrangement was made where she would instead come to Hogwarts at the beginning of the next term. Dumbledore doubted whether the elusiveness of Rakepick indicated problems regarding her trustworthiness, but eventually chose to give her the benefit of the doubt due to the lack of real evidence.
When Dumbledore was back, he paid Jacob's sibling and their friends a visit in the Three Broomsticks Inn, where they were celebrating their success regarding the break-in of the Vault of Fear. Back at his office, Dumbledore listened to Jacob's sibling's vault-breaking story and talked about his own adventure. Despite them breaking the rules again, Dumbledore still awarded Jacob's sibling 100 House points, but warned them never to do it again.
At the start of the 1987–1988 school year, Professor Dumbledore introduced Madam Patricia Rakepick to the entire school, charging her with everything related to the Cursed Vaults and making her an official non-teaching staff member capable of docking House points. Soon, it was found that Tulip Karasu and a couple of other students were inflicted with a sleepwalking curse, which was inevitably caused by someone tampering with another Cursed Vault.
Despite the difficulty the school was experiencing, Dumbledore and the rest of the faculty decided it needed distraction and some happy memory, so they arranged an Astronomy-themed social gathering for the students in the Great Hall known as the Celestial Ball. Dumbledore was able to persuade Madam Pince to allow the election for the head of a student committee that would be in charge of the decorations to take place in the Library. He then summoned the students to the Great Hall and announced the event, encouraging students to partake in the election for the decorating committee. Dumbledore attended the Celestial Ball with other faculty members, at the start of which he gave a short speech commending the decorating committee's success.
After Jacob's sibling and their friends got out of the Forest Vault which they had successfully broken into, Dumbledore and Filch greeted them in the Forbidden Forest. Dumbledore told Jacob's sibling they continued to exhibit little respect for Hogwarts's rules and himself, and gave them detention in the Kitchens under Pitts's supervision for the next school year.
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Dumbledore's decision to appoint Rakepick proved a costly one as Rakepick turned out to be one of R's members and nearly managed to kill Jacob's sibling and their friends before being defeated by a Garroting Gas and forced to flee but left Merula Snyde traumatised with the betrayal and use of the Cruciatus Curse when they went to the Cursed Vault. Dumbledore was away at the time and unable to stop it and was left responsible with what had happened, admitting regret for being outside to deal with threats and promising to prioritise capturing Rakepick.
It is requested that this article, or a section of this article, should be expanded. Please help the Harry Potter Wiki by expanding this article to give more complete coverage of its subject.
The next year was by no means any less troublesome than the previous year, with Jacob's sibling and their friends more determined than ever to stop R and find the last Cursed Vault, despite Dumbledore's attempts to make them focus on their studies. He was even more disturbed with how Ben Cooper and Merula Snyde had become different due to the events of last year and that an Azkaban escapee who turned out to be an expelled student of Mahoutokoro School of Magic was working with R. When Rowan Khanna was killed by Rakepick, Dumbledore led a huge memorial to their noble sacrifice.
- Harry Potter: "But why couldn't Quirrell touch me?"
- Albus Dumbledore: "Your mother died to save you. If there is one thing Voldemort cannot understand, it is love. He didn't realise that love as powerful as your mother's for you leaves its own mark. Not a scar, no visible sign... to have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever. It is in your very skin. Quirrell, full of hatred, greed, and ambition, sharing his soul with Voldemort, could not touch you for this reason. It was agony to touch a person marked by something so good."
- — Dumbledore and Harry discussing the power of love[src]
Ten years after Dumbledore left Harry Potter with his uncle and aunt, the Dursleys, Harry started attending Hogwarts, not as happy as Dumbledore might have hoped, considering the neglect he had faced at the hands of his intolerant aunt and uncle, but alive and well. That year, Lord Voldemort formulated a plan to regain human form. Dumbledore and his friend Nicolas Flamel (the only known maker of the Philosopher's Stone) began to suspect that the disembodied Dark Lord was plotting to steal the invaluable object, which would be capable of restoring him to full power. Dumbledore had the stone moved to a medium security vault at Gringotts Wizarding Bank, but later had it moved to Hogwarts itself; coincidentally, on the same day that an attempted break-in was made upon the vault. It was retrieved by Hagrid, who was also taking Harry to buy his school supplies.
Dumbledore and several teachers (McGonagall, Flitwick, Sprout, Snape and, dubiously, Quirrell) at Hogwarts planted magical security methods to protect the stone. Dumbledore was behind the final, and most powerful protection placed upon the stone. He enchanted the Mirror of Erised to contain the Philosopher's Stone, only to be removed by someone who did not intend to use or possess it, but only to keep it from the hands of evil. Dumbledore suspected that the Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor Quirinus Quirrell was behind the plot to steal the Philosopher's Stone, while working for the weakened Lord Voldemort, and as such he asked Snape to keep an eye on him. He also anonymously returned James's Cloak of Invisibility to Harry as a Christmas present.
Over a series of nights, Harry Potter proceeded to visit the Mirror of Erised as often as he could to see his parents' faces. Dumbledore found Harry visiting the mirror one night, and after explaining to Harry what the mirror was all about, told him that the mirror was to be moved and requested that Harry not go looking for it. Before heading back to bed, Harry asked Dumbledore what he saw when he looked into the mirror. Dumbledore claimed to see himself holding a pair of thick, woollen socks, telling Harry that "one can never have enough socks." However, Dumbledore was joking — the matter being a very personal one. At first, still yearning for Grindelwald’s love, Albus saw himself with his former lover in the Mirror. However, after Grindelwald’s defeat and having come to terms with his past guilt over his sister’s death, later in his life Dumbledore would see his family whole and intact, free of any pain or suffering. It is unknown if Grindelwald, as a redeemed man, was included in these later reflections.
In the end it was Harry who protected the Philosopher's Stone from Quirrell and Voldemort. Voldemort failed for the same reasons he had failed to murder Harry previously: due to Lily Potter's love for Harry. When Voldemort, who had possessed the body of Quirrell, ordered his servant to attack the young boy, the sacrificial protection instilled within him at the point of his mother's death killed him and forced the Dark Lord's spirit to flee. When Harry recovered from the ordeal in the hospital wing, he questioned Dumbledore about why Voldemort had tried to murder him as a baby. Dumbledore did not believe that Harry was ready to know the truth about the Prophecy Sybill Trelawney had made and told him he would know when he was older (although this would actually later turn out to be a mistake).
At the end-of-year feast, Dumbledore awarded an extra 170 house points to Gryffindor students, Harry Potter (60), Ron Weasley (50), Hermione Granger (50) and Neville Longbottom (10), respectively for bravery and logical skills, prompting Gryffindor to win the House Cup, ruining Slytherin’s chance of the cup for the seventh year in a row. This may have shown an amount of bias towards Gryffindor to announce their win in such unusual circumstances.
Sometime before the next year began, Dumbledore, having never been fooled by Gilderoy Lockhart's tall tales, figured out the truth soon when Lockhart erased the memories of two wizards that Dumbledore personally knew. He realised that Lockhart had gone too far in his desire for fame and decided to track him down and make him pay for his crimes. Having the position of the Professor of the Defence Against the Dark Arts vacant proved to be useful for Dumbledore, as he offered Lockhart the job and although Lockhart was reluctant as his career as an author was progressing very well, successfully convinced him by slyly hinting that Harry Potter was a second-year student in Hogwarts, causing Lockhart to accept.
Having intended for Lockhart to show his ineptitude and fraudulence to the students and thus expose him to the public secretly, Dumbledore's decision was shocking to take by the other staff members as they never forgot Lockhart as the obnoxious attention seeker back then despite his achievements, with McGonagall saying what the students could possibly learn under a man as vain and celebrity-hungry as Lockhart. Dumbledore, however, skilfully talked himself out by pointing out that Lockhart was the only one who was willing to take it and also saying that there was a lot to learn from even a bad teacher: what not to do, how not to be.
- "It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."
- — Dumbledore's advice to Harry Potter[src]
Shortly into the school year of 1992, students again fell under attack from a beast allegedly released from the Chamber of Secrets. Under the influence of Lucius Malfoy, the Hogwarts board of governors voted to remove Dumbledore from his position as Headmaster when he proved unable to uncover the culprit; Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge also had the groundskeeper Rubeus Hagrid taken to Azkaban, acting under the theory that it had been he who opened the Chamber in 1943.
It was later revealed that first year student, Ginny Weasley, had come into possession of Tom Riddle's Diary, a bewitched object capable of interacting with whoever wrote in it. The diary slowly drained the life force from Ginny, and when the memory it contained was nearly strong enough to take physical form, it had her journey into the heart of the Chamber. However, Harry Potter was able to find the Chamber himself, and there, defeated the beast that dwelt within; Salazar Slytherin's basilisk. He also destroyed the diary with one of the basilisk's fangs, saving Ginny and defeating the nearly fully formed memory of Riddle. Harry was only able to achieve these feats by displaying an extreme amount of loyalty to Dumbledore; for only someone truly loyal to the Headmaster would be capable of summoning his pet phoenix Fawkes, who provided the tools needed for Potter to defeat Riddle and the basilisk.
Dumbledore mysteriously returned to his position as Headmaster after the memory of Riddle was revealed as being behind the attacks. He commended both Harry and Ron for solving the mystery with the Special Award for Services to the School and two hundred points each for them. This secured Gryffindor for the House Cup for the second year running and again ruined Slytherin's chances, fuelling the hatred and rivalry between the two houses. He also secured Hagrid's release from Azkaban by having Ron deliver his release papers via owl and cancelled exams as a special treat, much to the delight of the students and the dismay of Hermione Granger. Lucius Malfoy was also sacked from his position as a governor of Hogwarts, much to Draco's dismay and Harry's satisfaction.
However, Dumbledore was privately concerned by the phenomena that Harry described; a mere memory capable of taking physical form was unheard of. Dumbledore then began to suspect that Riddle's diary was in fact a Horcrux, and furthermore, considering the lack of care the Dark Lord had taken in protecting the diary, that he had created more than one.
During his final talk with Harry in his office, Dumbledore came close to telling Harry about his connection with Voldemort but refrained from doing so as he felt that twelve years old was still too young to learn the truth and he wanted Harry to enjoy this night of triumph.
- "Now, pay attention. Sirius is locked in Professor Flitwick's office on the seventh floor. Thirteenth window from the right of the West Tower. If all goes well, you will be able to save more than one innocent life tonight. But remember this, both of you: you must not be seen. Miss Granger, you know the law — you know what is at stake... I am going to lock you in. It is — five minutes to midnight. Miss Granger, three turns should do it. Good luck."
- — Dumbledore giving instructions to save Sirius[src]
The year after, the Ministry of Magic took it upon itself to increase security around Hogwarts. Sirius Black, who had been sentenced to life in Azkaban for murdering Peter Pettigrew and twelve Muggles with a single curse, had escaped from the wizarding prison. The Ministry, afraid that he was going after Harry Potter, placed a large number of Dementors at Hogwarts to try to recapture him. Dumbledore reluctantly tolerated the Dementors on school grounds but refused to allow them within the school itself.
However, the Dementors violated Dumbledore's decree when they entered the Quidditch match between Gryffindor and Hufflepuff, causing Harry to fall unconscious and fall from the sky. Dumbledore was able to prevent Harry from hitting the ground and repelled the Dementors with a Patronus.
As the school year drew to its close, it became clear to Harry and his friends that Sirius Black had been framed for his crimes, committed by Pettigrew, who has been disguised as Scabbers for twelve years. But Sirius was captured, locked in the highest tower, and sentenced to the Dementor's Kiss. Dumbledore instantly believed Harry and his friends about Sirius's innocence, but the Minister did not. Dumbledore was incapable of over-ruling the Ministry's decision despite him being Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot.
Instead, Dumbledore told Hermione Granger to use her Time-Turner to save Sirius and in the process Buckbeak as well. Harry and Hermione's rescue mission was a success, Sirius escaped on Buckbeak. The Dementors were removed from the grounds for their attack on Harry and the attempted removal of his soul. During the rescue Harry also conjured a powerful corporal Patronus, that Dumbledore later commented on.
Dumbledore saw Remus Lupin (the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher) off after Snape leaked his identity as a werewolf to the school. Harry was also seeing Lupin off too and Dumbledore could tell that Harry was troubled. Harry explained how guilty he felt allowing Pettigrew, the real culprit who had framed Sirius, to escape, which coincides with a prediction Trelawney made. Therefore, he feared that he may have indirectly given Voldemort a servant to return him to power. Dumbledore assured Harry that he did a noble thing in saving Pettigrew's life, forging a deep, magical bond between them, and he promised Harry that one day he'd be glad he spared Pettigrew.
At the end of the year Dumbledore began to feel uneasy about concealing the truth of Sybill Trelawney's prophecy because even though Harry was still young, he had proven himself to be exceptional, and he would have to be told soon.
- "It is my belief — and never have I so hoped that I am mistaken — that we are all facing dark and difficult times. Some of you in this Hall have already suffered directly at the hands of Lord Voldemort... A week ago, a student was taken from our midst. Remember Cedric. Remember, if the time should come when you have to make a choice between what is right and what is easy, remember what happened to a boy who was good, and kind, and brave, because he strayed across the path of Lord Voldemort. Remember Cedric Diggory."
- — Dumbledore giving respect to Cedric Diggory[src]
Before the beginning of the new school year, the first Death Eater activity in years broke out at the Quidditch World Cup, causing Dumbledore to suspect that the second rise of Lord Voldemort was near. Later, Hogwarts played host to the first Triwizard Tournament since 1792. It was decided that only students of age would be allowed to enter their names to the Goblet of Fire, because of the dangers the tournament represented and its high death toll. Dumbledore personally drew an Age Line around the magical artefact to ensure that this rule would be impossible to break. During this year, Dumbledore employed his old friend, Alastor Moody, an ex-Auror, as the new Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor. Moody took this position only as a personal favour to Dumbledore.
However, unknown to anybody, a day before Moody was set to arrive at Hogwarts, he was overpowered by Death Eaters Barty Crouch Jnr and Peter Pettigrew. On the orders of Voldemort, Crouch brewed Polyjuice Potion, which he used to impersonate Moody and take his place at Hogwarts. Crouch, in the guise of Moody, successfully fooled the Goblet of Fire and ensured that Harry Potter was chosen as the fourth champion of the Triwizard Tournament. Crouch secretly aided Potter throughout the tournament, so that in the final task it would be him to touch the Triwizard trophy first, which he had bewitched to become a Portkey.
When Harry and fellow champion Cedric Diggory touched the trophy at the same time, they were transported to the graveyard of Little Hangleton. There, Diggory was killed on the orders of Lord Voldemort, and Harry's blood was taken as the final ingredient in a potion the Dark Lord used to turn to full power. Using the Portkey, Harry was able to escape Voldemort and return to Hogwarts.
It was when Crouch, still in the guise of Moody, took Harry from out of Dumbledore's presence (something the real Moody never would have done in such a traumatic situation) that the headmaster realised that it was not Moody who had been at the school the whole year. Dumbledore, Snape and Minerva McGonagall quickly overpowered the Death Eater. It was in that moment that Harry realised exactly why Dumbledore was the only wizard that Voldemort ever feared. Barty then truthfully revealed the entirety of Voldemort's plot and his participation in it under the influence of Veritaserum.
Despite all evidence to the contrary, Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge refused to believe that Lord Voldemort had returned to power and had Crouch subjected to the Dementor's Kiss before he could be forced to stand trial before the Wizengamot. Despite this, Dumbledore knew that Voldemort's return was real and, in response to Fudge's failure to act, reformed the Order of the Phoenix, an alliance brought together during the First Wizarding War to fight against Voldemort and his followers. Dumbledore chose to reform the Order as he feared that the start of the Second Wizarding War was lingering and inevitable to happen.
Again, Dumbledore was reminded of Harry's exceptional skill and knew that he would surely have to be told of the prophecy soon, but again he chose not to, out of a desire to spare Harry an additional burden.
Second Wizarding War (1995–1997)
Evading Cornelius Fudge
- "They're trying to discredit him. Didn't you see the Daily Prophet last week? They reported that he'd been voted out of the International Confederation of Wizards because he's getting old and losing his grip, but it's not true; he was voted out by Ministry wizards after he made a speech announcing Voldemort's return. They've demoted him from Chief Warlock on the Wizengamot, and they're thinking of removing his Order of Merlin, First Class too."
- — Dumbledore's discredit at the hands of the Ministry[src]
The Ministry immediately began to deny Dumbledore and Harry's claims that the Dark Lord had returned, starting a smear campaign designed to slander and vilify them; in particular, Dumbledore was removed from his positions as Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot and Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards as punishment for his refusal to stay in line with Ministry propaganda. However, Dumbledore professed not to care, so long as the Ministry did not eliminate him from Chocolate Frog Cards. He confessed that he believed that Fudge's persecution of him was of his own free will and not due to the Imperius Curse, though this was small comfort.
Before the beginning of the school year, Dumbledore was made Secret-Keeper of the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix and ensured that Harry Potter's friends did not divulge any information about the Order to him, as he did not want the Order to be compromised in anyway.
Dumbledore attended Harry's trial at the ministry, arriving three hours early at five a.m. by a handy mistake. He presented Arabella Figg for Harry's defence and offered to call Dobby to testify that Harry had not used a Hover Charm in 1992 and reminded Fudge that he himself had pardoned Harry's accidental inflation of Marjorie Dursley. He also commented on the unusual behaviour of the court holding a full criminal hearing for a simple case of underage magic. After the Wizengamot had ruled in Harry's favour Dumbledore left without having so much as spoken to Harry or looked at him.
When the time came to choose the Prefects from the fifth year Dumbledore considered Harry, but out of sympathy for the ordeals he had faced and the ones still to come, he chose to spare him the added responsibility and passed it on to Ron Weasley. This decision confused some people who had assumed Harry would naturally receive it and would have shown solidarity with the young wizard.
Dumbledore had come to fear the connection that existed between the Dark Lord and Harry, and purposely avoided him throughout the school year. When signs of this connection became increasingly obvious, Dumbledore had Severus Snape attempt to teach Harry the art of Occlumency, rather than himself, as he feared that Voldemort may have been able to peer into his mind through his connection to Harry. The Ministry also began to interfere heavily at Hogwarts. They appointed Fudge's Senior Undersecretary (Dolores Umbridge) to the post of Defence Against the Dark Arts professor.
Umbridge started her reign at Hogwarts by rudely interrupting Dumbledore's Start-of-Term Feast. Things got progressively worse from there. Umbridge and Fudge slowly passed rules and regulations that syphoned the powers of the Headmaster, while increasing those of Umbridge herself. Until finally Umbridge was granted the new position of High Inquisitor of Hogwarts. In response to Umbridge and the Ministry's refusal to teach practical defensive magic, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and Ron Weasley created a group of students that met secretly to learn defence against the Dark Arts. With Harry acting as the leader and teacher, this organisation was known as Dumbledore's Army, in order to frighten the Ministry.
When this illegal society was uncovered, Dumbledore willingly took the blame; pointing out that it was named "Dumbledore's Army, not Potter's Army." While Fudge ordered his arrest, Dumbledore stated that he would not come quietly and easily overpowered his would-be captors with a single spell and went underground, working to aid the Order full-time. In Dumbledore's stead, Umbridge was named Headmistress of Hogwarts and took full advantage of her position and authority over students and staff alike.
Duel with Lord Voldemort
- Albus Dumbledore: "It was foolish to come here tonight, Tom. The Aurors are on their way —"
- Voldemort: "By which time I shall be gone, and you dead!"
- — Dumbledore and Voldemort preparing to duel[src]
Unfortunately, as Dumbledore had feared, Voldemort finally acted to use the connection between himself and Harry Potter. Using Legilimency, Voldemort created a vision that indicated that his beloved godfather, Sirius Black, had been captured by Voldemort personally and was being tortured by him within the Department of Mysteries. Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny Weasley, Luna Lovegood, and Neville Longbottom all rushed to the Ministry in the hopes of saving Sirius. However, the six students were ambushed by a group of Death Eaters, who hoped to force Harry to recover the record of the prophecy made about him and the Dark Lord. Voldemort perceived that it was too dangerous to enter the heart of the Ministry of Magic himself. Fortunately, Severus Snape was able to alert the Order to this and several members arrived in the Ministry where they battled with the Death Eaters.
Near the end of the battle, Dumbledore himself arrived and swiftly captured all the Death Eaters personally; except Bellatrix Lestrange, who murdered Sirius and evaded a spell cast at her by the revered wizard. After binding the Death Eaters with an Anti-Disapparition Jinx, Dumbledore went to the atrium of the Ministry where Lestrange had been joined by Voldemort himself, who attempted to kill Harry.
Voldemort's curse, however, was prevented; Dumbledore quickly animated a golden statue to cover Harry and shield him from the curse. He animated the other statues from the Fountain of Magical Brethren to immobilise Bellatrix and alert Ministry officials. With Voldemort having arrived in the Ministry, Dumbledore took this chance to give undeniable evidence to Fudge that the Dark Lord truly had returned and fought him both to protect Harry and hold him at bay. Dumbledore displayed his extraordinary magical capabilities as he calmly countered or dodged Voldemort's attacks and returned with his own assault that steadily forced Voldemort to go on the defensive, yet Dumbledore was not fighting to kill, a fact which surprised Voldemort. Soon enough, Dumbledore managed to trap the Dark Lord within an orb of water just after having been saved by Fawkes, who intercepted a killing curse Voldemort had shot at Dumbledore while the latter was countering the strike of a fiery serpent that Voldemort had conjured. Though Dumbledore had failed to capture or defeat Voldemort, the Dark Lord realised himself that he could not overpower his former teacher, and so abandoned his effort and disapparated.
Before Voldemort fled the Ministry however, he briefly possessed Harry, hoping that Dumbledore would sacrifice the teenager in an attempt to kill him. However, Dumbledore did not take the bait as he cared for Harry too much to do it. Fortunately, Dumbledore did not have to resort to whatever means he would’ve needed to remove Voldemort from Harry himself, as the tremendous power of Harry's love, dwelt on his grief for his late godfather, inflicted great pain upon Voldemort and the Dark Lord was forced to remove himself and block his connection. With his failure to retrieve the prophecy and his attempt on Harry’s life foiled, Voldemort fled the Ministry with Bellatrix, but not before he was seen by Ministry officials, including Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge. With Dumbledore's credibility realised once more, Fudge's was permanently lost. Henceforth, Dumbledore successfully ensured that Fudge removed Umbridge, pardoned Hagrid so he could return to Hogwarts and he himself would be reinstated as headmaster.
Once he was back at Hogwarts, Dumbledore consulted with a distraught Harry, explaining the meaning of his connection with Voldemort and asserting the meaning of the prophecy. Before the end of the year, he also had the Inquisitorial Squad disbanded and reverted any damage they did.
Training Harry Potter
During the summer of 1996, Dumbledore tracked one of Voldemort's Horcruxes to the house of the Gaunts. Dumbledore journeyed to Little Hangleton, where he found the remains of the shack hidden behind weeds and bush. Voldemort had placed many powerful enchantments around the former home of his ancestors; however, Dumbledore proved skilful enough to pass through them unharmed. When he found the Horcrux, a ring formerly owned by Marvolo Gaunt, he saw that the stone in the ring was one of the Deathly Hallows, the Resurrection Stone.
This stone, according to legend, had the power to revive the dead (but in reality, a spiritual form of the person was brought back instead, much like an echo). His desire to see his family overrode his common sense for just a moment and he placed the ring on his finger, forgetting that the ring had been cursed by Voldemort. The curse quickly spread, and were it not for his own prodigious talents, he would have died within moments. Despite this injury, Dumbledore proceeded to destroy the ring, and with it, a piece of Voldemort's soul, bringing Voldemort that much closer to defeat.
Dumbledore quickly returned to Hogwarts, where the skills of Severus Snape managed to trap the curse in Dumbledore's hand. However, both Snape and Dumbledore knew that it would eventually spread to the rest of his body. Knowing that the curse would kill him, Dumbledore asked Snape, that when the time came, that he be the one to end Dumbledore's life, rather than Draco Malfoy. Malfoy had been given the task of assassinating the headmaster, in order to spare Draco's soul from being torn Snape had to be the one to do it. Snape later objected to the plan but was reminded by Dumbledore that it was the only way to spare him from great suffering. During this time, Dumbledore also shared his insights on Voldemort with Harry by showing him the various memories he had collected, giving Harry a greater knowledge of Voldemort's psychology that would help him in his future conflicts.
Throughout the 1996–1997 school year, Dumbledore passed on certain pieces of information to Harry Potter that would be important for the boy in his quest to destroy the Dark Lord. Dumbledore held private lessons with Harry, revealing in them much of what he had learnt about Voldemort's past, life and Horcruxes. Dumbledore revealed to Harry that he made it his business to try and find out about Lord Voldemort's past. He did this by questioning people who had known him as a child and a teenager and obtained Voldemort-related memories from them.
He collected memories from Bob Ogden, Morfin Gaunt, Horace Slughorn, and the house-elf Hokey. Using these memories, along with some of his own, he discovered that Voldemort had created six Horcruxes, an unheard-of event, been guilty of murders that he framed others for, and also figured out what the Horcruxes could be based on Voldemort's ego and his long interest in Hogwarts: Tom Riddle's Diary, Gaunt's Ring, Hufflepuff's Cup, Slytherin's Locket, Nagini, and an object of Rowena Ravenclaw's (later revealed to be her lost diadem). They dismissed the idea of a Gryffindor artefact as unlikely as only the Sorting Hat and the Sword of Gryffindor remained as items from Gryffindor himself and Voldemort did not have access to them.
Hunting for Horcruxes
- "I would like you to wear your Cloak, please. Very good. Shall we go?"
- — Dumbledore to Harry, before their journey to the cave[src]
After much searching, Dumbledore eventually tracked another of Voldemort's Horcruxes to a cave that as a young orphan, he had once visited. As he had promised, Dumbledore allowed Harry Potter to accompany him to the cave and help destroy the Horcrux. Setting off from Hogwarts on an evening in late June 1997, he and Harry Apparated to just outside the cave, being unable to enter directly due to its protective enchantments. Once inside, Dumbledore located the Horcrux's second line of defence; a hidden doorway which only opened when it received an offering of blood.
They next found themselves in a vast chamber containing an underground lake, with a solitary island at its centre from which a faint green light was visible. After a failed attempt by Harry at Summoning the Horcrux, Dumbledore located a carefully concealed boat that would allow them safe passage across the lake. During the crossing, Harry learned of the Horcrux's third line of defence; the lake was filled with Inferi, which would attack anyone who touched the lake's water. Dumbledore instructed Harry on the use of fire as the weapon of choice against the Inferi, should it become necessary.
Arriving at the small island, they found a basin filled with glowing green potion. This last defence could not be removed by Vanishing it or scooping it out; someone would have to drink it to get to the Horcrux that lay within. Dumbledore ordered Harry to help him drink all of the potion, no matter what effects it caused, even if Harry had to force it down Dumbledore's throat.
Dumbledore drank and he saw a vision of the duel between him, Gellert Grindelwald and Aberforth Dumbledore and Ariana's death. The drink also was weakening him and made him extremely thirsty as well and caused him great pain (the whole purpose of the potion). He couldn't bear it, but Harry succeeded at getting it down his throat by telling him it would be over soon. On his last drink he fell unconscious. After a failed attempt by Harry to revive him with Rennervate, Dumbledore woke up after his period of unconsciousness wanting water.
Harry then attempted to summon water for Dumbledore with the Water-Making Spell, but this proved ineffective as the cavern was enchanted to vanish summoned water. In desperation, Harry filled a cup with water from the lake. Harry was only able to tip the water over Dumbledore's face before the Inferi climbed up out of the lake and attacked them. Harry panicked and attempted to fight back with a multitude of spells and curses, including the Impediment Jinx and Sectumsempra curse, but none of them worked since the Inferi were too numerous and had no blood to spill. Dumbledore, having regained consciousness, created a ring of fire around them that repelled the Inferi, driving them back into the lake while he and Harry escaped in the boat with the Horcrux. Harry used a small cut on his arm to reopen the hidden doorway, and once outside the cave they Disapparated back to Hogsmeade.
Battle of the Astronomy Tower
- "A jet of green light shot from the end of Snape’s wand and hit Dumbledore squarely in the chest. Harry’s scream of horror never left him; silent and unmoving, he was forced to watch as Dumbledore was blasted into the air: for a split second he seemed to hang suspended beneath the shining skull, and then he fell slowly backwards, like a great rag doll, over the battlements and out of sight."
- — Description of Dumbledore's death[src]
They would find no rest there, however, as the Battle of the Astronomy Tower had already begun. Harry and Dumbledore took brooms from behind Madam Rosmerta's bar and flew to the Astronomy Tower. Once at the Astronomy Tower, Dumbledore and an invisibility-cloaked Harry were confronted by Draco Malfoy. Before Harry could reveal himself, Dumbledore immobilised him with a silent Full Body-Bind Curse, making it so he could only watch the upcoming event.
Malfoy disarmed Dumbledore, and admitted that he, Draco, was behind the series of attacks on Hogwarts students, and that Voldemort had ordered him to kill Dumbledore. Dumbledore revealed that he knew of Draco's mission and of the attempts on his life with the Opal Necklace and poisoned mead but allowed him to remain in Hogwarts for knowing Voldemort would kill him if he was exposed and expelled. Dumbledore offered Draco protection, and promised to hide Draco and his mother where Voldemort would never find them. Draco ultimately could not bring himself to kill the Headmaster, even after the arrival and encouragement of several Death Eaters, who were smuggled into the castle by Draco.
However, Snape — who had been called by Filius Flitwick to assist the Order of the Phoenix, sometime previously — arrived at the Tower and, after Dumbledore pleaded with him, in a way that did not expose Snape's true intentions, killed the Headmaster, blasting his body off the tower and falling to the ground below.
- "After all, to the well-organised mind, death is but the next great adventure."
- — Albus Dumbledore regarding the afterlife[src]
A while later after the battle was over, Harry found Dumbledore’s body lying dead on the ground in front of hundreds of staring people, his body broken from the fall. Harry found the locket and read a letter written by R.A.B. and realised that it was not a Horcrux, meaning the locket was a fake. Harry neither knew nor cared what this message meant, and he felt that he and Dumbledore had accomplished nothing that night and that the latter had weakened himself by drinking the potion for nothing. Harry started crying over Dumbledore’s corpse as well as straightening his half-moon spectacles upon his crooked nose and Harry wiping a trickle of blood from the dead Headmaster’s mouth with his (Harry’s) own sleeve.
Sometime in early July, a funeral was held for him, attended by Hogwarts students and staff, Ministry of Magic officials (including Cornelius Fudge, Rufus Scrimgeour, Dolores Umbridge and Percy Weasley), centaurs, members of the Order of the Phoenix (except Severus Snape, due to his covert status, and Mundungus Fletcher, due to his imprisonment in Azkaban), Hogsmeade residents including Dumbledore’s brother Aberforth, Fawkes, Hagrid’s half-brother Grawp, Merpeople, Tom the landlord of the Leaky Cauldron, Madame Maxime from Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, Bass player of the Weird Sisters Donaghan Tremlett, driver of the Knight Bus Ernie Prang, Madam Malkin of the robe shop in Diagon Alley, the lady who pushed the trolley on the Hogwarts Express, as well as many other witches and wizards.
Post-mortem and legacy
After his death, Dumbledore's reputation was smeared somewhat by Rita Skeeter, who wrote an insulting biography called The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore. This depicted him in a highly unfavourable light, including suggesting that he delayed his attack on Gellert Grindelwald because he still held lingering affection for him.
In 1998, shortly prior to the start of the Battle of Hogwarts, Lord Voldemort attempted to force the whereabouts of the Elder Wand out of its previous owner, the same Gellert Grindelwald. Despite Grindelwald's refusal to disclose its location, Voldemort deduced that it would have been won by Dumbledore after he defeated Grindelwald in the 1940s. He broke into the White Tomb and stole the Wand in hopes of gaining access to its full power.
- Albus Dumbledore: "Harry. You wonderful boy. You brave, brave man. Let us walk."
- Harry Potter: "But you’re dead."
- Albus Dumbledore: "Oh yes."
- Harry Potter: "Then ... I’m dead too?"
- Albus Dumbledore: "Ah. That is the question, isn’t it? On the whole, dear boy, I think not."
- — Dumbledore greeting Harry Potter in Limbo[src]
As it turned out, the night of Dumbledore's death was not the last time Harry saw him. After finding out he was one of Voldemort's Horcruxes (Voldemort having accidentally made him one the night he tried to kill him), Harry bravely walked into Voldemort's camp to be killed, just as Dumbledore had (reluctantly) planned. But Voldemort's Killing Curse once again failed to kill Harry. Instead, Harry entered a limbo state, where he spoke with Dumbledore's spirit. Dumbledore explained to Harry everything he had not told him when he was alive: the nature of the Deathly Hallows, his friendship with Gellert Grindelwald and a number of other things.
Most significantly, he revealed that Harry was not dead because, when Voldemort had used Harry's blood to restore his body, he had unintentionally linked Harry's life to his own, with the result that Voldemort's curse had "killed" only the fragment of his soul that had remained in Harry all these years. Harry also attempted to console Dumbledore when his old teacher asked if he had been any better than Voldemort in his quest for power; Harry pointed out that Dumbledore had never killed if he could avoid it, and argued that Dumbledore's search for the Hallows, as opposed to any attempts to create Horcruxes, made him completely different from Voldemort.
After he had finished his talk, Dumbledore and Harry parted ways: Harry returned to the mortal world and Dumbledore moved, as he would put it, "on". He was the only Headmaster to be laid to rest on the Hogwarts grounds, after Hagrid argued that no other Headmaster had ever given as much to the school as Dumbledore had. His portrait also remained at Hogwarts. After Voldemort's death and Harry revealing that he was the true master of the Elder Wand, he said to Dumbledore's portrait that he was going to return the wand to his tomb where it would remain until he died and should he be undefeated, he would be the wand's last master which would break its power. He only used the wand for one feat: to repair his own wand which had been broken earlier.
After his son, Albus Potter, got injured due to using a prototype Time-Turner to save Cedric Diggory, Harry visited the portrait of Dumbledore. He gave Harry advice of trying to see his son the way he is rather than make him be something he cannot be and later departed.
Harry approached him again after hearing Albus and Scorpius Malfoy, the son of Draco Malfoy, are kidnapped by Delphini, the daughter of Lord Voldemort, where he asked Harry what he was doing and answered Harry's questions. Feeling like he was left "cleaning after the messes" Dumbledore left after he died, Harry asked him to leave. In response, Dumbledore tried to justify his actions. He stated that he wanted to fight Voldemort on his behalf but he "felt like he loved Harry too much to not realise that he should have trusted Harry more". He later gave Harry advice and left his portrait once more.
Dumbledore's reputation was so significant that even years after his death, the only reason Albus and Scorpius avoided contacting him for help when they found themselves stuck in 1981 was because they were concerned that even the knowledge of their existence would taint Dumbledore's future plans, as it was agreed that he had always known enough to know what to do or not to do and awareness of details such as Harry's future son might impact his plans.
- "He was tall, thin, and very old, judging by the silver of his hair and beard, which were both long enough to tuck into his belt. He was wearing long robes, a purple cloak that swept the ground, and high-heeled, buckled boots. His blue eyes were light, bright, and sparkling behind half-moon spectacles and his nose was very long and crooked, as though it had been broken at least twice."
- — Dumbledore's physical appearance[src]
Albus Dumbledore was tall and thin, with silver hair and beard (auburn in his youth) so long that they could be tucked into his belt. He had a very long and crooked nose that looked as if it had been broken at least twice. (It appears and is implied that his brother's punch during their sister's funeral played a role in shaping his nose.) He was also said to have long and skilful fingers. His eyes were described to be a brilliant, soul-piercing shade of blue, and usually twinkled with kindness and mischief.
When he became genuinely angry, however, Dumbledore would transform from a benign-looking, bright-eyed old man into a wizard even more terrifying than Lord Voldemort himself, with a face that was a classic portrait of cold fury and an aura of power that made him seem as if he was giving off burning heat. Indeed, Harry had — after witnessing a rare moment of Dumbledore's furious rage — confessed to fully understanding why people always said that Dumbledore was the only wizard Voldemort had ever feared.
Dumbledore wore half-moon spectacles and a colourful array of robes, ranging from purple to crimson-red. He once claimed to have a scar above his left knee in the precise shape of a map of the London Underground, but whether or not he actually did is unknown. His demeanour was often — if not always — serene and ethereal, and he usually spoke in a calm, pleasant voice even when Harry thought that he was actually furious.
During the last year of his life, Dumbledore's right hand was scarred when he donned the cursed Marvolo Gaunt's Ring. Had Severus Snape not intervened with a counter-curse, Dumbledore would have died within minutes. Regardless, the curse left his hand blackened and dead-looking, and no amount of healing could repair the appearance. According to Snape, the curse would eventually spread itself from the contained hand and Dumbledore was doomed to die in no more than one year's time. Whether this means the blackening dead-look appearance would spread throughout the entire body is unknown. Death, however, served to restore him to full health and strength: his spirit was described as walking sprightly and upright, with hands that were both whole and white and undamaged, and looking exactly how Harry remembered him to be.
Personality and traits
- Albus Dumbledore: "Welcome! Welcome to a new year at Hogwarts! Before we begin our banquet, I would like to say a few words. And here they are: Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak! Thank you!"
- Harry Potter: "Is he — a bit mad?"
- Percy Weasley: "Mad? He's a genius! Best wizard in the world! But he is a bit mad, yes."
- — Harry Potter and Percy Weasley about Albus Dumbledore[src]
Considered by many to be the most powerful wizard of all time, Dumbledore was benevolent and wise, a great wizard in the vein of Merlin. He had an almost unearthly calm and relaxed demeanour and almost constantly gave off an aura of serenity and composure, rarely displaying intense emotions of anger or fear. He was known for typically speaking in a calm, collected voice, and being firm, but reasonable and kind. He was always courteous, even to people who he found rude or in the case of Fenrir Greyback, disgusting. However, despite his benign nature, it is said that Dumbledore was the only wizard Lord Voldemort ever truly feared.
Dumbledore was notably eccentric. He was quite fond of knitting patterns and frequently wore flamboyant clothing (at one point, he is seen wearing a flowered bonnet that he received from a Wizard Cracker). In particular, he had a somewhat odd taste in sweets: he enjoyed Muggle sweets relatively unknown in the wizarding world (particularly sherbet lemons) and the password to his office, supposedly that of his current favourite sweet, was often peculiar choices such as Acid Pops and Cockroach Clusters. In addition, he had a liking for chamber music as well as ten-pin bowling. He often used humour to make people feel comfortable in his presence. In fact, his noted eccentricity may have been at least partly his using humour to appear less threatening. Dumbledore has been known to be quite philosophical; often, very few people have the understanding (or patience) to comprehend his philosophies.
As a supremely talented wizard, Dumbledore showed numerous examples of extraordinary abilities. His capabilities as a wizard were combined with his extraordinary intellect and extremely cunning and subtle mind that allowed him to comprehend human nature and turn the better aspects of humanity (trust, love and friendship) to Voldemort's disadvantage in particular. Due to this, Dumbledore wielded extraordinary powers of deduction that allowed him to be completely unfooled by any charades who could fool even the entire wizarding world and recognise instantly any deception that may have initially fooled him at the slightest of slip-ups, as shown repeatedly when he quickly figured out Quirrell was distracting him with a letter he faked was from the Minister of Magic, was never fooled by Lockhart's books due to having knew what he truly was and quickly realised the truth, and deduced that Moody was actually Crouch Jnr the moment he asked Harry to be brought to his office.
During his Hogwarts career, especially as Headmaster, Dumbledore always maintained his composure, even in situations that would terrify others. Being attacked by Ministry officials, the opening/reopening of the Chamber of Secrets, having Dementors at the school, being surrounded by a plethora of Inferi and soon thereafter, staring death in the face (although they may have made him uneasy for the safety of others) did not frighten him. This was shown best at his duel with Voldemort, when he engaged in small talk with him in a calm, almost sardonically humourous way, despite Voldemort's tremendous duelling prowess and his attempts to murder him. Dumbledore was verbally and utterly unafraid of death and was obviously never scared of Voldemort himself, but rather what he may/could do to those he cared for, and he was also not afraid of being exposed to great torment.
An example of this was in The Cave, when knowing that the Potion would cause him severe pain and distress without knowing exactly what would happen to him, Dumbledore did not hesitate to drink it. Despite this, Dumbledore was capable of fear and feared, above all else, that he had actually cast the spell that ended his sister Ariana's life. However, he was capable of facing his fears, as shown by how he indirectly confessed his guilt to Leta Lestrange, and by how he later ultimately mustered the strength to confront Grindelwald and end the Global wizarding war after years of watching Grindelwald's rampage. Therefore, Dumbledore's Boggart is said to be his sister's corpse.
While Dumbledore (at least in his later years) never displayed arrogance or conceit, he had no use for false modesty either, and if a situation warranted it, was perfectly willing to acknowledge his virtually peerless intelligence and power. He once told Harry that he was fairly confident in his ability to defeat Gellert Grindelwald despite the latter's own great skill and possession of the Elder Wand. Dumbledore's portrait also professed to Harry that he had considered personally fighting Voldemort for Harry, further showing Dumbledore's self-confidence. However, Dumbledore also understood that he had his weaknesses and blind spots just as any other man and worked hard to keep them in check.
- "As I have already proven to you, I make mistakes like the next man. In fact, being — forgive me — rather cleverer than most men, my mistakes tend to be correspondingly huger."
- — Dumbledore talks to Harry about his Horcrux theory, and the possibility of his making a mistake[src]
More than anything else, Dumbledore was motivated by his belief in the power of the human spirit. He also had a deep capacity for love, frequently reminding Harry that love was the greatest magic of all. Dumbledore believed in the good in everyone and insisted on giving second chances. He notably argued strongly against the expulsions of Newton Scamander, and later Rubeus Hagrid, as well as refraining from expelling Jacob's sibling, despite the latter repeatedly breaking school rules. Dumbledore also allowed Remus Lupin to be a pupil at his school and later a professor, despite the fact that Remus was a werewolf. He had a great friendship with Hagrid, despite many not trusting the half-Giant. The greatest example of this, however, is Dumbledore's relationship with Severus Snape, in whom Dumbledore was willing to hold a considerable amount of faith after Severus had shown remorse. Dumbledore even saw a possibility for good in Tom Riddle as a child, and was open to giving him a second chance, despite the fact that Tom had already revealed himself to be a cruel sociopath and bully even at a young age, though he kept a careful eye on Tom Riddle during his Hogwarts career rather than simply hoping for the best.
Although he was devoted to Riddle's defeat after he became Voldemort, Dumbledore was genuinely regretful on how the days he could have easily intimidated Riddle into admitting his wrongdoings and taking responsibility for them were long gone, proving he felt a level of remorse for never managing to do anything significant to change Riddle. In addition, Dumbledore also believed the rumours of Grindelwald showing remorse for his crimes during his time in prison and showed a level of respect and gratitude for Grindelwald's concealment of the true location of the Elder Wand for a shred of redemption even if it was in vain.
Dumbledore was highly perceptive and emotionally intelligent; his knowledge of people's true personality went beyond being simply a good judge of character. This is never more apparent than in his complex insights into Voldemort's psyche, which he pieced together with Harry to deduce where the Horcruxes were hidden. However, this insight also made him extraordinarily good at manipulating people, which he was perfectly willing to do if he thought it necessary. Perhaps the most blatant example of this was with regard to Severus Snape, as he used Snape's love for the late Lily Evans to manipulate him into helping him protect Harry Potter, her son, despite all the risks it entailed and despite Snape's bitterness and hatred towards Harry's father. Another note worth mentioning in this area, is Dumbledore conjured a bottle of gin to help ease Mrs Cole during their conversation. He did not offer her a glass, but simply produced it, knowing she would drink it. A lesser note of his emotional insight was with Gilderoy Lockhart: despite Lockhart having fooled every inhabitant in the wizarding world with his books, Dumbledore, having knew what he truly was, was completely unable to be tricked by Lockhart and he was able to effortlessly manipulate Lockhart into taking the job of DADA Professor by slyly hinting Harry Potter was in Hogwarts attending his second year so he can expose him.
In spite of Dumbledore's many extraordinary qualities, he was also a somewhat Machiavellian figure. He could be stoically pragmatic and was extremely prone to secrecy. He spent a short portion of his youth concocting plans with Gellert Grindelwald for global domination over Muggles, in the process treating his ill sister with neglect. Whilst Dumbledore was never a deliberately cruel man, at times, he was too far-sighted, making choices that he believed to be for the benefit of humanity even if it deeply hurt some of the people around him. For example, he placed Harry Potter with the Dursley family despite knowing that they would be unlikely to treat him well, as pointed out by Professor McGonagall, all for the sake of keeping him alive.
- "I knew my brother, Potter. He learned secrecy at our mother's knee. Secrets and lies, that's how we grew up, and Albus... he was a natural... How can you be sure, Potter, that my brother wasn't more interested in the greater good than in you? How can you be sure you aren't dispensable, just like my little sister?"
- — Aberforth Dumbledore bitterly describes his brother's inner nature[src]
Dumbledore's greatest personality flaw, which he explained to Harry in 1998, was his desire for power. Particularly in his younger days, he acknowledged that he had been quite selfish and that because of his extraordinary abilities, he had wanted fame, power, and glory for himself. When he and Gellert Grindelwald were in school, they made plans to enslave Muggles and re-establish wizards as the natural rulers of the world. However, when his sister Ariana Dumbledore was killed during a duel between himself, Aberforth Dumbledore, and Grindelwald, any desire to accomplish this goal left him. The incident led to him declining any attempts by others to offer him positions of great political authority, and he refused to take the post of Minister of Magic at least three times.
Dumbledore, while often kind and calm, did have a very serious side of himself and was capable of a terrifying wrath. This was rarely seen but appears to be well known and combined with his exceptional magical abilities, made very few of his allies willing to cross him and almost all of his enemies feared him, to the point that even Lord Voldemort and Gellert Grindelwald were known for fearing him, despite their own incredible magical powers, wrath and status as the two most dangerous dark wizards in history. Even a slight exertion of Dumbledore's serious side and anger could intimidate the likes of Harry Potter, and even the Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge, evidenced when they both were shocked when Dumbledore made it clear quite firmly that Hagrid did not open the Chamber of Secrets, despite Dumbledore not openly showing anger. Additionally, rather than shouting when Harry entered Hogwarts with the Ford Anglia, and when Harry failed to get Slughorn's memory, just an expression of calm disappointment on both occasions was enough to make Harry feel ashamed to the point that he found it preferable if Dumbledore shouted at him.
At the apex of Dumbledore's wrath, which happened extremely rarely, such as when he apprehended Barty Crouch Jnr, who impersonated Moody and almost killed Harry, Dumbledore was described as "being struck with cold, ancient fury". In fact, during this rare moment of intense anger (caused by Dumbledore's realisation that, not only had Voldemort been resurrected, but also that he had been expertly deceived for an entire year), Dumbledore was so terrifying, that even Minerva McGonagall and Severus Snape, both extremely powerful and stern wizards who rarely displayed emotions, were clearly uneasy. Harry himself (who was also slightly terrified of his reaction) fully understood then why Dumbledore was the only wizard that Voldemort ever feared. In addition to being completely unintimidated but rather saddened by Harry's profound bursts of rage regarding Sirius, in all the other times Harry unleashed his anger, Dumbledore proved himself capable of quelling even Harry's anger with just a slight exertion of his dark side, as he silenced Harry's questions regarding his judgement of Draco and Snape and even silenced Harry's anger with just indicating he had crossed the line, showing even Harry's rage could not match the seriousness and fury the old but extraordinarily powerful wizard was capable of.
- "Regret is my constant companion. Do not let it become yours."
- — Albus Dumbledore on the nature of regret[src]
Dumbledore was haunted by his traumatic family history. In particular, he was riddled with guilt over the circumstances surrounding the death of his sister. He felt enormous remorse for his selfishness and was tortured for the rest of his life by the possibility that he might have been the one who cast the spell that killed his sister, to the point that he delayed facing Grindelwald until there was no other choice, due to him fearing what his former friend might have known about the death of Ariana. However, he had enough sense to realise that he will inevitably have to duel Grindelwald and therefore he took the position as the Professor of DADA to prepare students for the upcoming dark times. Additionally, Dumbledore's own guilt allowed him to comfort Leta Lestrange over her own guilt in the role she had in her brother Corvus' death. Indeed, it was Dumbledore's advice to Leta that induced her to save Credence Barebone from Yusuf Kama's revenge.
Dumbledore wasn't afraid of death as he believed "to the well organised mind, death is but "the next great adventure." Even during his short time in Limbo, he expressed his excitement to Harry for what awaits him. At times, Dumbledore could feel the pressure of his role in the world acutely and relied on his Pensieve to deal with them. He kept vials of memories which he could view in his Pensieve, some of which were his own. He often used this to find connections he might have missed before, and also when he felt he had "too many memories".
Dumbledore's office housed "a number of curious... instruments." Among them was a Pensieve, a stone receptacle used to store and review memories, which witches and wizards are able to extract from their heads as a type of fluid. Harry first discovered this device to witness Dumbledore's memory of Igor Karkaroff's trial before the Wizengamot, and also used it to view Severus Snape's memories of childhood. During the private lessons between Harry and Dumbledore, the Pensieve was used to view a variety of memories about Tom Riddle's past.
Dumbledore was also seen using the Deluminator, a device for removing and later returning light, and for use as a homing device. It was confirmed when the object was inherited by Ron that the Deluminator was of Dumbledore's own design. Dumbledore was the possessor and master of the Elder Wand, an extremely powerful wand known also as the "Wand of Destiny" or the "Deathstick", and one of the Deathly Hallows, until he was disarmed by Draco Malfoy at the top of the Astronomy Tower. The wand's allegiance was then transferred to Harry Potter nearly a year later. Unlike many of the wand's previous owners, Dumbledore kept its identity a closely guarded secret.
He also owned a pet phoenix named Fawkes, who left Hogwarts Castle after Dumbledore's death. It was revealed in that two of Fawkes' feathers form the magical cores of both Harry's and Voldemort's wands. This was another testament to his skill as phoenixes were notoriously difficult to domesticate, although they have been long associated with the Dumbledore family. His great-great grandfather was said to have owned a phoenix, as did his alleged relative Credence Barebone/Aurelius Dumbledore. According to legend, a phoenix will appear to anyone of the Dumbledore Family in dire need.
Magical abilities and skills
- "Albus Dumbledore is the greatest sorcerer in the world."
- — Harry Potter regarding Dumbledore's magical skill[src]
Dumbledore was an outstandingly talented wizard, even while still only a student of Hogwarts, excelling in many fields of magic to the point of being recognised by his friend Elphias Doge as the most brilliant student to ever attend the school, possibly rivalled only by the prodigiously brilliant Tom Riddle, and attaining many awards and prizes that required incredible magical capability to obtain. As an adult, Dumbledore had become an extraordinarily powerful and accomplished wizard of nearly unrivalled abilities and powers, to the point that he was admired and feared by even others of outstanding magical talent, considered to be the greatest wizard of all time by many. Indeed, Dumbledore was the only wizard capable of defeating Gellert Grindelwald and later forcing Lord Voldemort himself on the defensive.
- Magical mastery: After his first year at Hogwarts, Dumbledore was already known to be outstandingly talented and prodigiously accomplished in the magical arts and seen by some as nothing less than the most gifted student the school had ever seen, winning many awards and prizes that required magical capability beyond his age. As an adult, Albus Dumbledore was considered by many to be the greatest wizard in modern history, if not in all of wizarding history, and he lived up to this assessment on many occasions with his exemplary mastery of magic. He returned to the school to teach first Defence Against the Dark Arts, excelling to the point that he was considered by many of his pupils as the best teacher in Hogwarts. During the earlier stages of Gellert Grindelwald's rise to power, even former Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, Torquil Travers, begrudgingly admitted that he considered Dumbledore the only wizard with the skill and power needed to defeat Grindelwald, despite his own personal dislike of the Professor. Indeed, even Grindelwald himself acknowledged that Dumbledore posed a bigger threat to his cause than any other living wizard and believed that only the extremely powerful Obscurial Credence Barebone could possibly be capable of killing him. Ultimately, it was Dumbledore's own, direct involvement that ultimately ended the Global wizarding war when Albus engaged Grindelwald and ultimately prevailed despite Grindelwald's mastery of the Elder Wand, with their legendary duel being such an amazing display of power and skill that, according to the eyewitnesses, it was as the greatest wizarding battle ever fought between two wizards, with Albus admitting that he had ultimately been a "shade more skilful” than Grindelwald. Later in his teaching career, he taught Transfiguration, a notably complex and difficult branch of magic, and soon rose to the position of the Head of Transfiguration of the school. He would eventually become the Headmaster of the highly prestigious wizarding school and soon established a well-deserved reputation as the most capable headmaster to ever lead Hogwarts, with even Tom Riddle acknowledging Dumbledore as being a worthy choice of the title of Headmaster and going so far as to ask why he would not take the position of the Minister for Magic, which he openly admitted Dumbledore to be fully capable of excelling in, with his ability to uphold the defences of the school being such that not even Voldemort could have ever breached the school or even dared to attempt to do so while it was under Dumbledore's protection, as Dumbledore was the only wizard that the Dark Lord ever feared, with Hogwarts being considered the only safe place left in the wizarding world that was safe from the most powerful dark wizard of all time. When they faced each other in magical combat, Dumbledore proved capable of pressuring Voldemort's overwhelming magical skill and powers with his own while, in Voldemort's own admission, not even fighting to kill, forcing Voldemort on the defensive and to eventually disapparate. Dumbledore also expressed full confidence that he could easily break out from the notoriously secure Azkaban even if he was imprisoned. When everything was said and done, Dumbledore had such a profound understanding and knowledge of how magic worked, even at his younger days, that he stood above nearly every other wizard alive, and earned the respect of many famously accomplished wizards, such as the magical theoretician Adalbert Waffling and the magical historian, Bathilda Bagshot. and the alchemist, Nicholas Flamel. Throughout his life, he greatly contributed to the advancement of magical knowledge in modern times and became a famous contributor to many magical scholarly journals. Dumbledore also proved capable of overcoming the powerful dark wards placed by Voldemort on the hiding place of his Horcruxes, effortlessly bypassing the enchantments he placed on the Gaunt Shack and doing the same to all but the enchantment on the Potion of Despair in the Horcrux Cave. In the latter, he showed the currently unmatched ability to detect and analyse magic seemingly upon merely touching or laying his hands, which he used to pass through all of Voldemort's defences.
- Intellectual genius: Dumbledore was not only a great wizard, but also possessed a tremendous intellect, being considered to be among the most brilliant students to ever attend Hogwarts (rivalled only by Tom Riddle), and, as an adult, was regarded by many as being cleverer than almost any other wizard alive. His intelligence was especially evident through his tactical and strategic genius, proving himself capable of devising elaborate master plans to defeat the most powerful Dark wizards seen for centuries and oppose their seemingly unstoppable ascensions to power. Particularly good at guessing, hypothesising, and predicting, Dumbledore informed his former student Newt Scamander about where he could find an illegally trafficked Thunderbird, knowing that Newt would make haste to save it and take it to America to set it free once it was nursed back to health, and, aware of Grindelwald's intention of infiltrating MACUSA while looking for the Obscurial in New York, hoping his former student would find a way to thwart him. The results of this ploy ultimately culminated in the capture of Gellert Grindelwald and the nine months-delay in Grindelwald getting his hand on Credence Barebone, and the prevention of the exposure of wizardkind to the non-magical world following the Obscurial attack on New York of 1926. Following this, he was also able to follow Grindelwald's train of thought in regard to how he would go about recruiting his followers and guessed correctly that his old friend would set up the International Statute of Wizarding Secrecy to be this tool of suppression and offer people freedom from it. Despite his Blood pact with Grindelwald limiting Dumbledore's ability to get directly involved, as well as the constant Ministry surveillance of him, Dumbledore's tactical advice to then Head of the Auror Office, Theseus Scamander, that if he and his men resorted to excessive force to deal with Grindelwald and his followers during the latter's rally, it would only serve to reinforce the point Grindelwald was making about the supposed totalitarian regime of the International Confederation of Wizards and the magical governments that supported it in the minds of those who chose to follow him. Dumbledore continued to play an important, if indirect, role throughout the Global wizarding war, with his tactical expertise granting the wizarding world the ability to hold against Grindelwald for sixteen years, buying him enough time to destroy the Blood Pact and finally defeat Grindelwald. When Lord Voldemort rose to power one generation later, Dumbledore's strategic brilliance successfully lead the Order of the Phoenix against Lord Voldemort's forces for eleven years during the First Wizarding War. This was seen quite predominantly again during the events surrounding the Second Wizarding War, when Dumbledore, through various strategic plans and an almost Machiavellian manipulation of key persons (such as Severus Snape and Harry Potter) before his death, was able to set the path for Harry Potter to locate Lord Voldemort's Horcruxes, and defeat the Dark Lord. Dumbledore's intellect, his strategic thinking in particular, is one of his key talents. A lesser but still very remarkable testament to his strategic aptitude was his ability to come up with a master plan to save Sirius immediately after learning of his innocence by giving subtle hints to Hermione Granger regarding the Time Turner and later effectively avoiding capture from the Ministry while doing jobs for the Order. His genius was also noticeable even after his death, through his will. Dumbledore displayed himself to be immensely foresightful, as he was able to accurately predict the possibility of Ron Weasley initially walking out on the Horcrux hunt and understand that he would be just as likely to return to it and gave him his Deluminator to help him find his way back to Harry and Hermione and use Hermione Granger's thirst for knowledge to lead her to becoming curious about the symbol of the Deathly Hallows by drawing it in the copy of that he left her, which ultimately led to Harry not only learning of the Deathly Hallows and finally having inserted the Resurrection Stone into the Golden Snitch that Harry first caught, learned on how to remove it, thus giving Harry the emotional support he needed to sacrifice himself to the Dark Lord. Dumbledore also possessed an exceptional amount of emotional intelligence, deductive abilities and immense intellectual perception, as he was able to completely see through Voldemort's charismatic mask of being a model student and had a considerable understanding of Voldemort's nature, something that allowed him to accurately deduce the location of his Horcruxes. In addition, he was intelligent enough to keep such a watchful eye over Riddle ever since his first opening of the Chamber of Secrets that he effectively kept the Heir of Slytherin from opening the Chamber the second time. He was also the only wizard who was not fooled by Gilderoy Lockhart's tall tales and was able to easily work out that Lockhart was a fraud from his personal knowledge of him and of two wizards whose memories had been modified by Lockhart. Dumbledore was also not fooled by Quirinus Quirrell's timid guise, correctly deducing that he had been working for Voldemort ever since he finished his journey, and although he was initially fooled by Quirrell's false letter that said the Ministry needed him, Dumbledore was able to quickly figure it out and return to Hogwarts in time to save Harry. He managed to eventually see through Bartemius Crouch Junior's disguise as Alastor Moody when he took Harry from him, which he said the real Moody never would have done, whereas Snape and McGonagall couldn't see through the disguise, and only followed Dumbledore when he ordered it, coming up with a clever plan to overpower the latter's Occlumency by first heavily weakening him with his Stunning Spell before having him exposed to Veritaserum and also swiftly deducing the pieces of the simple but brilliant plan Crouch used to disguise himself by keeping Moody alive but Imperiused and very weakened in order to ensure he couldn't overpower him and also insert the Polyjuice Potion inside his flask to drink without suspicion. He could easily identify whatever form Jacob's sibling took using the Polyjuice Potion, even if said disguise could fool the likes of McGonagall and Snape and was able to easily help them get away unpunished by slyly revealing his knowledge of their disguise and even rewarding as well as warning them without any suspicion. He was also able to easily outwit the notoriously famous hack journalist Rita Skeeter, having easily caught up with all her escapades at Hogwarts and quickly luring her into a position where he could have easily had her arrested by revealing his knowledge of her Animagus power, therefore leaving Rita effectively at his mercy and preventing her from writing anything directly antagonising towards him, doing so much faster than the also highly intelligent Hermione Granger. Additionally, even Cornelius Fudge admired Dumbledore's genius, and thus bombarded Dumbledore with letters asking for advice early into his Minister of Magic career.
- Charisma: While not famous for his abilities as a manipulator, due to Dumbledore's exceptional amount of emotional intelligence, he was nevertheless exceptionally adept at manipulating others, which he was perfectly willing to do for the greater good, and displayed an immense amount of charisma, able to effectively use a person's characteristics to his advantage to get them to do what must be done and inspire loyalty in others. Unlike Voldemort, Dumbledore always sought and used the best within people to get them to do his good-intended bidding and used his charisma to get many to the side of good instead of evil. He was able to effortlessly manipulate Newton Scamander into believing his intentions when telling him about the illegally trafficked Thunderbird were purely to just safe the poor creature while actually, he was also intending for Newt to stop Grindelwald from discovering the Obscurial's identity. He could also successfully convince the people he met to tell him about Voldemort and his time outside school despite the fear Voldemort inflicted upon them. The most notable display of his masterful manipulating abilities was when he was able to effectively manipulate Severus Snape into agreeing to protect Harry Potter and act as a spy in Voldemort's ranks for Dumbledore despite Snape's bitterness and hatred towards Harry's father and full knowledge of the risks his job had by using Snape's love for Lily Evans. Another display of his consummate manipulation skills was when he effortlessly manipulated Gilderoy Lockhart into becoming a teacher at Hogwarts by just slyly hinting that Harry Potter was a second-year student at the school, and being a teacher to the "famous Harry" would propel Lockhart's fame into the stratosphere, notably taking advantage of Lockhart's hunger for more fame and ego to get him to agree to take the job so he could expose him, despite Lockhart not being eager to take the job due to being more interested in his career as an author. Dumbledore's charisma garnered him so much respect and loyalty from his allies that most of them still proved loyal to Dumbledore even after his death and valiantly fought in the Battle of Hogwarts for him. Indeed, Dumbledore was able to quickly befriend Harry Potter and inspired so much loyalty from his protégé that he was able to successfully get him to continue the hunt for Horcruxes, despite Harry's resentment of Dumbledore's secrecy, and even eventually sacrifice himself as Dumbledore had planned.
- Teaching skills: Having apparently always been highly interested in teaching, from a young age, Dumbledore already displayed the ability to be a good mentor-like figure and model to his fellow student friends, as noted by Elphias Doge, and as an adult, Dumbledore's teaching talents coupled with his extraordinary magical capabilities made him fully capable of managing the position of the Professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts and of Transfiguration at Hogwarts so well as to be considered the greatest teacher at Hogwarts during his time as an instructor. Indeed, his status on the staff was such that he even earned the confidence of his predecessor as Headmaster, Professor Armando Dippet, and was able to persuade him to allow Rubeus Hagrid to stay at Hogwarts as an assistant to the Mr Ogg, the Groundskeeper of the day, thus henceforth earning the undying respect and loyalty of his former student. Dumbledore also successfully guided Minerva McGonagall into becoming an Animagus, which was known to be very difficult to do, by the age of 17. He also noted that he was fully confident that had he been the one who taught Harry Potter Occlumency, he would have been able to mould Harry into a successful enough of an Occlumens to resist Voldemort. Hermione and Ron were also sure that when Dumbledore gave Harry private lessons, he wanted to teach Harry the most advanced martial magic and was confident that Harry would have learned enough from Dumbledore to be capable of fulfilling the Prophecy. Due to his emotional wisdom and ability to show compassion to all, Dumbledore was also highly adept at offering emotional guidance and also teaching certain people how to perceive the emotional state of others to the point of making even some of the most reclusive students opening up to him, as displayed by his ability to get Leta Lestrange to open up about her brother's death by revealing his own mistakes of not loving Ariana enough, which ultimately allowed Leta to save Credence Barebone from Yusuf Kama's revenge, and gave her the mental fortitude to resist Gellert Grindelwald's persuasive speech, and also effectively teach Harry into understanding Voldemort from their private lessons together, which was undoubtedly helpful in Harry's victory over the Dark Lord, as well as grant him the fortitude needed to remain steadfast against Voldemort no matter what happened. As Headmaster, Dumbledore even agreed to admit werewolf Remus Lupin to Hogwarts, taking the necessary precautions to avoid Remus' monthly transformations from endangering the other students, and forbidding Severus Snape to reveal Remus' secret, which made Remus fully loyal and highly respectful to him. Dumbledore was also partly responsible (along with some other Hogwarts staff) for teaching and training Lord Voldemort himself, who, while at Hogwarts was considered the most brilliant student to ever attend the school (by Dumbledore) and who later, despite his evil, grew up to be the most powerful dark wizard of all time, and was considered to be the one of the most powerful wizards in history, rivalled only by Dumbledore himself.
- Leadership skills: Even during his youth, Dumbledore was already an excellent leader, having been good enough to be appointed the British Youth Representative to the Wizengamot and he and Grindelwald were confident they would be fully capable of quickly starting the For the Greater Good revolution to conquer the wizarding world and put down the Muggles. However, he quickly learned his lesson from this mistake and while he had acquired the understanding of what being a leader truly was, he still acknowledged the potential of Newton Scamander and Harry Potter as being greater than his, as they quickly proved themselves to be more qualified from the beginning due to their lack of lust for power and their willingness to accept any responsibility given to them no matter how large. Nevertheless, the lessons he had learned from his youthful mistakes made him an extraordinarily skilful leader indeed and he was well-respected and feared by many and with his uncanny ability to quickly get his followers to trust him, to the point his skills as a leader was held in such a high regard that he was even offered the position of Minister for Magic many times and would have most definitely greatly excelled, with Harry adamantly acknowledging that Dumbledore would have been a far better Minister than Cornelius Fudge and Rufus Scrimgeour without hesitation, despite his great anger at Dumbledore at the time, therefore acknowledging his inferiority to Dumbledore as a leader despite Dumbledore's own acknowledgment of Harry being more gifted than he was. Fudge himself held Dumbledore's leadership brilliance in such a high regard to the point that he would often ask for his advice. During the Global wizarding war, Dumbledore was able to give useful leadership advice to both Head Auror Theseus Scamander, and Head of Magical Law Enforcement Torquil Travers concerning how to best combat Gellert Grindelwald, though Travers would disregard it but his advice allowed Theseus and most of his allies to survive unscathed Grindelwald's rally in Paris and it was his leadership expertise giving advice to the wizarding authorities that allowed the wizarding world to be not conquered by Grindelwald long enough for Dumbledore to abolish the Blood Pact and defeat Grindelwald personally. It was around this time that Dumbledore also personally taught the prodigious young Tom Riddle, who would ironically grow up to be the most powerful dark wizard of all time, and Dumbledore's greatest rival. After Dumbledore's promotion to Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he led the school so effectively, that many considered him the greatest headmaster Hogwarts would ever see. Dumbledore's leadership expertise also allowed him to handle the responsibilities of the Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot and Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards with such effectiveness as to be well-respected for it by many, according to his friend Elphias Doge. Later on, a more experienced Dumbledore was able to found and effectively lead the Order of the Phoenix against Lord Voldemort and the latter's Death Eaters in both the First and Second Wizarding Wars, in secret. His leadership allowed Dumbledore to stand against the overwhelming forces of darkness at both the First and Second Wizarding War, despite also having to avoid the Ministry of Magic's eyes, inspiring enough loyalty into his allies to make them be fearless and determined that the cause they were fighting for was right even with the massive losses of their loved ones. Due to Dumbledore's leadership skills, many high-ranking Ministry officials, such as Torquil Travers, Dolores Umbridge, and Cornelius Fudge, were shown to fear what would happen if Dumbledore was plotting to overthrow the Ministry, implying that had Dumbledore wanted to, he could easily have overthrown the British Ministry of Magic, but he never had any intention of doing so.
- "Dumbledore flicked his own wand. The force of the spell that emanated from it was such that Harry, though shielded by his stone guard, felt his hair stand on end as it passed, and this time Voldemort was forced to conjure a shining silver shield out of thin air to deflect it. The spell, whatever it was, caused no visible damage to the shield, though a deep, gonglike note reverberated from it, an oddly chilling sound...."
- — Dumbledore duelling Lord Voldemort[src]
- Duelling: Albus Dumbledore was a duellist of extraordinary, almost unrivalled skill. Even at a young age, Dumbledore was already a highly proficient duellist, as he held his own against Grindelwald and Aberforth in their three-way duel. As an adult, in addition to having achieved great success in teaching the Hogwarts students in the art of martial magic during his time as the Defence Against the Dark Arts professor, as displayed by the level of ability shown by his students Newt, Theseus and Leta, all of whom became seasoned Ministry magical combatants during the Global Wizarding War, Dumbledore was acknowledged by even the abrasive Torquil Travers to be the only one skilful enough to fight and bring Grindelwald in. Even Grindelwald himself acknowledged Dumbledore would be easily capable of overpowering any of his followers, which made him a threat to his revolution even though at the time they could not fight each other directly due to their blood pact and noted that only Credence Barebone's Obscurus form would be capable of slaying Dumbledore in magical combat. Even at the height of Grindelwald's power, where the Dark Wizard had killed so many, the whole wizarding world still acknowledged Dumbledore could defeat him and indeed, despite Grindelwald's mastery of the Elder Wand, Albus ultimately proved capable of beating him in what many considered to be the greatest duel ever to be fought, with him describing himself as being a "shade more skilful" than Grindelwald. Prior to his injury and consuming the Drink of Despair in 1996, it remained a fact that any witch or wizard would, regardless of skill, would be no match for him, to the point that even the extraordinarily powerful Lord Voldemort strongly preferred to refrain from a face to face confrontation with Dumbledore: Even when the latter was extremely angry over Dumbledore's rejection of his proposal to become DADA'S Professor, despite coming close to, he refrained from drawing his wand and attacking Dumbledore. During the First Wizarding War, when confronting Severus Snape, who was a very accomplished wizard even then, over the Prophecy, Dumbledore instantly disarmed and grounded him before his adversary could react. During the time when Patricia Rakepick was present in Hogwarts, Snape noted that Dumbledore was the only one who could certainly defeat the extremely deadly curse-breaker and even Rakepick appeared to be unwilling to confront Dumbledore directly. Jacob's sibling, perhaps the best student duellist, noted that it would be tantamount to suicide to try to infiltrate his office. He swiftly dealt with five werewolves that attacked Hagrid's hut during Fenrir Greyback's attack on Hogwarts without a single scratch. Following the Return of Lord Voldemort, upon discovering that one of the teaching staff were in fact a Death Eater impersonating ex-Auror Alastor Moody, Dumbledore quickly blindsided and subdued Bartemius Crouch Junior with a single Stunning Spell of such power that it blasted apart the magically sealed door to the Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor's office and immediately floored said Azkaban escapee, knocking him unconscious. During his attempted arrest by the Ministry of Magic during the 1995–1996 school year, Dumbledore, with a single spell, instantly defeated Cornelius Fudge, Dolores Umbridge, Kingsley Shacklebolt, and John Dawlish when they attempted to arrest him (though Kingsley was secretly on Dumbledore's side) and escaped. During the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, Dumbledore soundly rounded up all of the Death Eaters who had earlier managed to avoid capture from the other Order members just before the following Duel in the Ministry Atrium took place, during which he swiftly incapacitated the extremely powerful Bellatrix Lestrange, one of Lord Voldemort's most dangerous followers. He subsequently calmly duelled Voldemort himself, countering his attacks and responding with such powerful assault as to force the Dark Lord into constant defence before eventually trapping him in an orb or water, forcing him to disapparate and to try and possess Harry to get Dumbledore to mercy kill the boy. Even with his wand hand irreparably injured, he still remained an extremely skilful duelist, as he noted he was fully confident he could repel any attack attempted on him and Harry by Voldemort's followers in case it happened while they travelled to find Slughorn and escort Harry to the Burrow and effortlessly defeated Dawlish again, showing he still could overpower even a seasoned Auror in his weakened condition rather easily. Dumbledore's duelling style was extremely versatile and dexterous, effortlessly capable of flawlessly adapting to the situation shown during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, where while fighting the lesser threats posed by the Death Eaters, Dumbledore would simply immediately use powerful magic to incapacitate them, but when fighting the tremendously powerful Dark Lord himself, Dumbledore not only used some of his most powerful spells but also manipulated the environment into securing Bellatrix was out of the fight and Harry was safe, used Fawkes by taking advantage of the latter's immortality to block Voldemort's Killing Curse, and apparating at times to dodge Voldemort's spells before swiftly counter-attacking, a method of duelling that proved considerably efficient when used against the Dark Lord.
- Defence Against the Dark Arts: With the subject apparently being his most prominent expertise out of his many magical abilities, Albus Dumbledore held the position of Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for more than twenty years and excelled to the point of being deemed the best teacher in the whole school during his time teaching the subject, showcasing his expertise in fending off Dark Forces, up until Torquil Travers banned Dumbledore from teaching the subject. The full extent of Dumbledore's abilities in this field were perhaps best shown during the uprisings of Gellert Grindelwald and Lord Voldemort, who were both regarded at the time of their respective rebellions as the most dangerous Dark Wizard of all time. Not only did popular opinion quickly grow during both conflicts that Albus Dumbledore would be the only one who could possibly put an end to their respective and seemingly unstoppable reigns of terror, but also that both of the aforementioned dark wizards both feared and acknowledged him as the single greatest threat to their respective causes, and reluctant to challenge him directly. For this reason, those who opposed said dangerous criminals were often quick to rally at his side. Even during peacetime, between the First and Second Wizarding Wars, when a nefarious cabal of Dark Wizards became active in Britain and sought to unlock the secrets of the fabled Cursed Vaults at any cost, said group tried very hard to keep their operations secret from Dumbledore out of fear that he might decide to stop them if he became aware of their activities. His knowledge and ability where protective enchantments was concerned was perhaps best shown during his time as Headmaster of Hogwarts, when he was personally responsible for upholding the magical protections around the school, and many felt that there was no safer place in the world than Hogwarts Castle, which was even said to be more secure than Gringotts Wizarding Bank, as the castle's defences were of a standard the likes of which, most likely, no other previous Headmaster had achieved. Indeed, Dumbledore's defensive spellwork was so powerful and sophisticated that not even Voldemort himself could find a way through them. In addition, Dumbledore was apparently the primary leader of the staff's efforts in containing the damage unleashed by the opening of the Cursed Vaults and the staff noted repeatedly that had Dumbledore not been absent, he could have succeeded, where they had trouble, easily. Dumbledore was also highly accomplished and knowledgeable in fending off Dark creatures, as shown by him successfully mentoring his students, including the unique Newt Scamander, on how to overcome a Boggart, only failing with Leta Lestrange due to the tremendous guilt she had over her brother's death, and later by his ability to produce an extremely powerful Patronus Charm capable of single-handedly chasing away all of the Dementors that Cornelius Fudge had ordered stationed around Hogwarts without it even being a corporeal one. Dumbledore was also highly familiar with the concept of Inferi and how to defend against them using fire and in addition to thoroughly explaining to Harry Potter how they were created by Voldemort, he was able to swiftly force off the large army of Inferi in the Horcrux Cave with a single Firestorm. Dumbledore was also aware that an Obscurus can be potentially healed by replacing the feelings that made that person an Obscurial with a sense of love and belonging, hence he gave such advice to Newt Scamander concerning Credence. Dumbledore's knowledge and ability to counter the effects of various spells of dark origin was exceptional, to the point where even Severus Snape, a long-serving Potions Master, eventual successor in the post of Defence Against the Dark Arts instructor and former Death Eater with a profound understanding for Dark Magic, repeatedly admitted that Dumbledore's expertise exceeded his own. One such example was when he and Professor McGonagall had to free Ben Copper from the Cursed ice that resulted from someone tampering with the fabled Cursed Vaults and noted that Dumbledore would have been able to do so far easier than themselves had he been present, and again four years later when he failed to break the curses put on a collection of dark artefacts belonging to Patricia Rakepick and handed them over to Dumbledore; whom he judged to be the only wizard capable of properly handling them. Years later, he was quick to recognise the attack of Mrs Norris as a case of petrification rather than murder after a quick examination of the cat, and knew the only way to undo the attack was to use a Mandrake Restorative Draught after trying to undo it with a spell that should have normally reversed petrification, as well as to quickly identify that the real Moody was under the Imperius Curse and lifted it from him after discovering Crouch had been disguising himself as the seasoned Auror. He also knew that the Killing Curse cannot pass through solid objects, nor truly destroy a Phoenix, and therefore used the Fountain of Magical Brethren's statues and Fawkes to effectively shield himself from Voldemort's Killing Curses during their only known duel. He was also quickly capable of identifying the exceptionally powerful curse on Marvolo Gaunt's ring and effectively suppress its effects long enough to return from the village of Little Hangleton in Yorkshire to Hogwarts, in spite of his injuries, for further treatment from Severus Snape, with him having previously managed to successfully penetrate the many powerful dark defences set up by Voldemort around the Gaunt Cottage without being harmed and doing the same to all but the enchantment on the Potion of Despair when he invaded the Cave. Uniquely, Dumbledore was even capable of ripping out the piece of Voldemort's soul from the ring in order to destroy it without destroying the Resurrection Stone. His understanding of human nature also allowed him to understand and effectively take advantage of the functions of ancient magic that wards from any treat that few witches and wizards even knew about: taking advantage of the magical protection that lingered over Harry due to his mother's sacrifice, Dumbledore was even able to effectively ensure that for the next sixteen years he would be safe from both Voldemort and his followers as long as he lived where a blood relative of his mother resided, highlighting his knowledge and proficiency in the subject. To further exemplify Dumbledore's exceptionally skill with the understanding and repelling of dark creatures, he was very skilful in dealing with werewolves, as he effortlessly dispatched five werewolves in Hagrid's Hut, and simply arriving to Jacob's sibling's aid sent the notoriously powerful Fenrir Greyback running from Hogwarts. Regardless of his resentment of dark creatures such as Dementors due to their untrustworthy nature, Dumbledore was still extremely knowledgeable and skilful in their nature and how to deal with them, as he thoroughly explained to Jacob's sibling on Boggarts and why they cannot be destroyed and can only be banished by Boggart-Banishing Spell.
- Dark Arts: While not an active practitioner of the Dark Arts, and seldom ever known to have used dark spells of any kind, Dumbledore was nevertheless exceptionally talented in the field of magic, with Minerva McGonagall, a long-time colleague of Dumbledore who knew him for most of her life, even insinuating at one point that Dumbledore was fully capable of utilising the same destructive dark powers that Lord Voldemort wielded, but that he chose not to do so, being "too noble to use them". Dumbledore's extensive knowledge on the topic of Dark Magic allowed him to fully understand the scarcely known and extremely advanced magic used to create Horcruxes, and he was able to quickly identify that Mrs Norris had been petrified upon a brief inspection, whereas others incorrectly believed the cat to be dead when they found her lifeless body. Even while limited by his good nature, Dumbledore still proved to be quite capable of casting powerful hexes and jinxes, as shown when he swiftly incapacitated Fudge, Umbridge, Dawlish, and Kingsley with a powerful hex that emitted a streak of silver light and was described as having the force of a gunshot and caused the floor to tremble when they tried to arrest him and later easily jinxed Dawlish once again when tailed by him. He seemed to have the capability to perform the Killing Curse, as Severus Snape feared Dumbledore was going to kill him after he had been disarmed and brought to his knees by the headmaster when straying too close to the school during his time as a Death Eater.
- Occlumency and Legilimency: Dumbledore was also impeccably adept in both Occlumency and Legilimency. Capable of using Legilimency without needing to use his wand or speak the incantation, many people, particularly Harry Potter, often noted that Dumbledore sometimes seemed to see right into their mind and correctly decipher what they were thinking. However, some of Lord Voldemort's followers, such as Barty Crouch Jnr, and his staff members, such as Horace Slughorn, proved to be excellent Occlumens capable of effectively hiding their thoughts from him. His skill in Legilimency was great enough that he was capable of extracting the true version of modified memories even if it was powerfully done, coaxing out from Morfin Gaunt and later Hokey the true version of the memories that Voldemort used powerful magic to falsify, something which he said needed a "great deal of skilled Legilimency" to accomplish, although he did admit that he was not able to do so without difficulty. He also trained Jacob, a natural Legilimens, in the art. Dumbledore's skill in Occlumency was so great that he was among the very few (together with Gellert Grindelwald and Severus Snape) skilled enough in the art to conceal thoughts from Voldemort himself, who was the most powerful Legilimens of all time. At one point, he noted to Harry that he was confident that he was capable enough in Occlumency to train him to successfully to resist Voldemort but due to his fear of Voldemort's reaction to their closeness, he made the ill-fated decision of appointing Snape to train Harry. He could also lower his staunch mind defence enough to allow a lesser Legilimens to enter his mind but still limiting what they could see, enabling Jacob's sibling to enter his mind but preventing them from seeing too much.
- "He clapped his hands. In an instant, the green hangings became scarlet and the silver became gold; the huge Slytherin serpent vanished and a towering Gryffindor lion took its place."
- — Dumbledore nonverbally and wandlessly changing the colours of Hogwarts house banners[src]
- Wandless and non-verbal magic: Albus was highly proficient at both non-verbal and wandless magic, both of which were highly advanced and difficult to perform; his prowess was great enough for him to be fully capable of using both simultaneously. While some people, such as Antonin Dolohov, as seen during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, seemed to produce lesser magic when using it non-verbally, Dumbledore was capable of extraordinary feats such as conjuring hundreds of squishy purple sleeping bags to accommodate the students of Hogwarts, without saying a word. During the Ending Feast in 1992, he only had to clap his hands to transform the banners of the Great Hall from Slytherin to Gryffindor. In addition, during the Welcome Feast in 1993, he extinguished and lit a candle with a mere wave of his hand. While in The Cave, Dumbledore easily foiled the defences set up by Lord Voldemort using only wandless and nonverbal magic. He later cast the Freezing Charm nonverbally to keep Harry unable to intervene in his death. He could cast the Human-presence-revealing Spell wandlessly and nonverbally. He also duelled Voldemort and defeated the Death Eaters during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries without ever uttering any incantation. He was also able to dim the Great Hall's light sources and summon the names of the Champions of the Triwizard Tournament to his hand. He even set Riddle's Wardrobe to fire without bothering to look. With sheer will, while having his Admonitors vanished by Theseus, Dumbledore kept the blood pact vial levitated without even having to look or wave his hand.
- Spell creation: Dumbledore was known for his ability to create unique magical spells and devices and modify already existing spells. He was the inventor of the Deluminator, which was considered to be unique. Not only could it remove light sources from the Deluminator's immediate surroundings, as well as bestow them, after it had been bequeathed to Ron Weasley, he discovered that he could sometimes hear Harry and Hermione's voices through it, and that it also allowed him to Apparate to their location, a function that Dumbledore likely added before his death. He also developed a method to communicate using Patronus Charms, which he taught to the members of the Order of the Phoenix.
- "Dumbledore was on his feet again, pale as any of the surrounding Inferi, but taller than any too, the fire dancing in his eyes; his wand was raised like a torch and from its tip emanated the flames, like a vast lasso, encircling them all with warmth. The Inferi bumped into each other, attempting, blindly, to escape the fire in which they were enclosed..."
- — Dumbledore fighting the Inferi with a firestorm[src]
- Elemental magic mastery: Dumbledore was extremely capable in using magic to manipulate the elements, especially fire, water and wind, although he seemed to prefer the former, for both combative and supplementary purposes, as it seems that when straying away from more conventional combative spellwork, Dumbledore would skilfully use the power of the elements to attack his adversary. In order to converse secretly with Newt Scamander, Dumbledore combined both water and wind to form a thick mist and easily dispersed it after he had finished. He displayed particularly incredible skill in controlling fire, as shown when he easily set ablaze Riddle's wardrobe without actually burning anything in order to display his wizarding powers to him and was able to generate a ring of fire to hold off a throng of Inferi in the Horcrux Cave, which was potent enough to remain unquenchable by the vast ocean that surrounded them. He was also capable of conjuring the everlasting Gubraithian Fire, an incredibly advanced piece of magic that extreme few could accomplish, greatly impressing Hermione Granger. In his duel against Voldemort, he used a fiery rope that managed to overshadow the silver shield Voldemort had conjured, forcing him to transfigure it in order to repel the attack, and easily manipulated the considerable amount of water contained inside the Fountain of Magical Brethren to rise up and cover Voldemort "like a cocoon of molten glass".
- Magical multilingualism: Dumbledore had an uncanny expertise in mastering many foreign magical languages, as not only could he speak Mermish and Gobbledegook, but he was even among the very few able to recognise and understand Parseltongue, the language of snakes, as while he and Harry were inside Bob Ogden's stored memory, he instantly recognised that Marvolo was speaking Parseltongue whereas Harry didn't even realise until Dumbledore pointed it out; he was able to quote verbatim a Parseltongue phrase uttered by Morfin Gaunt in a later stored memory, implying at least a level of ability to speak it.
- Transfiguration: Dumbledore was known to be highly accomplished and knowledgeable in the incredibly complex art of Transfiguration even before graduating, as his knowledge and proficiency on the subject was already sufficient for him to be allowed to submit some papers to the Transfiguration Today, all of which, particularly his pages on Trans-Species Transformation, were of a remarkably high standard, to the point that Bathilda Bagshot was impressed enough to contact him and his N.E.W.T. Examiner Professor Marchbanks was so impressed by his display during his Transfiguration N.E.W.T. Exam, that she would note that Dumbledore had performed transfiguration magic that "[she] had never seen before." As an adult, Transfiguration had become one of Dumbledore's most prominent areas of expertise, as ever since he was banned from teaching Defence Against the Dark Arts by Torquil Travers, Dumbledore chose Transfiguration as his next subject to teach and did so magnificently enough to quickly be promoted to the Head of Transfiguration department of the school, holding the position up for many years to come until his ascending to the position of Headmaster of the School. He was seemingly deemed the greatest teacher of the field in Hogwarts's history, as Harry Potter stated Dumbledore had been the best while only aware of Dumbledore's career as Professor of Transfiguration and having also trained the especially talented Minerva McGonagall into becoming an excellent master of the field and his successor later on. In addition, Dumbledore had been a famously regular and successful columnist to the Transfiguration Today to the point his contribution was deemed good enough to be published among the news of Daily Prophet. He was quite knowledgeable in the field of Animagus Transformation, having successfully guided Minerva McGonagall into becoming one at the age of seventeen, despite the notorious difficulty and known dangers of that ability. Dumbledore was particularly proficient in Conjuration and also accomplished in Vanishment, as he could effortlessly and non-verbally conjure a stretcher to transport the unconscious Harry, several hats for the charmed skeletons he enchanted for Hallowe'en Feast Entertainment that he easily vanished upon finishing, hundreds of squishy purple bags to accommodate the Gryffindor students in the Great Hall when Sirius Black broke into the Castle, two armchairs for Mrs Figg and himself to sit on during Harry's disciplinary hearing, at one instance quickly vanishing the container of the Goblet of Fire, a tea tray when the trio came to visit Hagrid, several glasses and a bottle containing Rosmerta's mead, which he later on easily vanished, a bottle of gin and several glasses to accommodate Cole, and a goblet to drink the Emerald Potion. His mastery of Transfiguration allowed him to make very good use of it in combat, as shown when Dumbledore seamlessly cast the Piertotum Locomotor spell to animate the statues of the Fountain of Magical Brethren to subdue Bellatrix, protect Harry and repel Voldemort's curses and conjured a large rope of fire that Voldemort had to transfigure into a snake to repel the attack, which Dumbledore easily vanished, during his duel with the Dark Lord. He also effortlessly transformed the banners of the Great Hall from representing Slytherin to Gryffindor with a mere clap of his hands. Dumbledore also had an uncanny knack for immediately figuring out and countering Transfiguration spells done by others, as shown by how he quickly deduced Horace Slughorn had turned himself into a chair and easily undid it with a simple jab of his wand and later on casually figured out the beetle watching over him and Jacob's Sibling as being Rita Skeeter using her Animagus power and called her out on it to make her revert back to her true form. He presumably also undid the transfiguration spell that McGonagall used on the Chessboard Chamber to quickly pass through them and get to Harry on time. In order to sing the school song, Dumbledore conjured and animated a ribbon that he twisted to form the lyrics into the air.
- "He raised his wand into the air and pointed it in the direction of Hagrid’s cabin. Harry saw something silvery dart out of it and streak away through the trees like a ghostly bird."
- — Dumbledore conjuring his Phoenix Patronus[src]
- Charms: Albus was known to be extremely accomplished in Charms even as a young man as articles that he wrote about the branch of magic were published in the scholarly journal Challenges in Charming and his N.E.W.T examiners Professor Marchbanks was so impressed by his display during his Charms N.E.W.T Exam that he said that Dumbledore "did things with a wand that [she] had never seen before". He also earned the Barnabus Finkley Prize for Exceptional Spell-Casting and could already cast such a strong Disillusionment Charm that he was effectively able to render himself invisible without needing an Invisibility Cloak, which was a tremendous feat. As an adult, Dumbledore's mastery of Charms was sufficient to earn him the illustrious title of Grand Sorcerer. His proficiency in the incredibly complex Patronus Charm was so advanced that he was able to devise new uses for this charm, allowing it to be used as a form of communication (with the caster speaking with their own voice through the Patronus). Dumbledore was also capable of effectively performing the extremely complex Fidelius Charm, acting as the Secret Keeper to 12 Grimmauld Place after it was made the Headquarters of the Order of Phoenix. He was even capable of performing the extremely powerful and ancient bond of blood charm to further ensure Harry's protection from Voldemort for 17 years while he lived with his aunt, Petunia Dursley. He could easily perform the Portus Charm successfully to create Portkeys, using it to turn a black kettle in his office to a Portkey that sent Harry and the Weasley children to Grimmauld Place and later the head of the golden wizard statue into a Portkey that took Harry back to Hogwarts. Even without the Deluminator, Dumbledore could easily put out light sources with an unknown charm, which he could do twice while in his office and also while announcing the Triwizard Champions with a mere gesture and seemed to have been the one who enchanted the device with such ability. He also was responsible for the additional charm cast on the Deluminator that allowed it to guide Ron back to Harry and Hermione after he left. He could cast a variety of powerful and unique enchantments, shown when he enchanted the Mirror of Erised to only give the Philosopher's Stone to a person who wished to find it but not to use it, which held firm even against Quirrell when he had both the knowledge of Voldemort and his own experience, which had allowed him to easily bypass the other enchantments put in place to protect the artefact, manifested a hand to Newt's location capable of taking Newt to Dumbledore's location and conjured a thick mist capable of hiding him and Newt from magical detection in order to prevent the Ministry from locating them. Dumbledore's mastery and knowledge of all forms of defensive charms was unparalleled, as while he was Headmaster of Hogwarts, Dumbledore was in charge of controlling the protective measures of the castle and the standard of his magic was so strong that not even Voldemort could breach them, with Hogwarts thus being considered the safest it had ever been with Dumbledore in charge. He could easily lift and recast them, evidenced when he temporarily lifted the Anti-Apparition Charm to allow the students to learn how to Apparate. He was also capable of locking doors to prevent them from being opened by seemingly any means apart from Dumbledore himself undoing the enchantment, as he did to further made it look like Harry and Hermione had not done anything to help Sirius escape and Hermione feared the idea of Dumbledore locking the doors of the Hospital Wing before they could get there after succeeding, with Snape and Fudge only able to access the door, despite Snape's rage and Fudge's exasperation, when Dumbledore calmly let them in, and later enchanting the entrance door to Hogwarts to be impenetrable to the Unlocking Charm and making the walls reject any attempt of anyone to climb up. He also was able to cast a powerful Age Line around the Goblet of Fire to ensure no one under the age of 17 could cross, with it being such a flawless enchantment that in addition to being humorously enchanted to both repel Ageing Potions and cause those who had used them to cross the line to grow beards, McGonagall adamantly defended that the Age Line Dumbledore had put had no flaws in it when the under-aged Harry Potter became Hogwarts's second champion, with Barty Crouch, while disguised as Moody, therefore being forced to risk exposure by putting Harry's name into the Goblet of Fire personally. He also understood the nature of the Goblet of Fire perfectly, acknowledging that there was no way for them to prevent Harry from competing after he had been chosen, and was able to easily unlock the chest containing the magical object by tapping it three times. As Headmaster, he was also able to control the protective spells around the school, such as when he lifted some of these spells so he and Harry Potter could breach the perimeter on a broomstick. Dumbledore often extracted his memories and put them inside his Pensieve and was able to project the image of his memory regarding the Prophecy of the Chosen One from it for Harry to see. In order to entrance the sharp Mrs Cole, Dumbledore non-verbally cast the very complex Confundus Charm with ease to successfully confound her into believing the blank paper was sufficient to allow a talk between them, a noteworthy feat as even the very skilled and powerful Severus Snape had trouble using the advanced charm. He also was capable of inserting the Resurrection Stone into the Snitch he gave Harry and enchanting it to only reveal itself when Harry was about to make the ultimate sacrifice, preventing any attempt from Harry to open it. His mastery of the Human-presence-revealing Spell was very potent, having been the only wizard seen thus far capable of penetrating the powerful magic of the Cloak of Invisibility, henceforth successfully sensing the presence of Harry Potter and Ron Weasley while they had the Cloak on. He was proficient enough in the Slowing Charm to perform it quickly and without his wand to slow down Harry Potter's swift descent after he was knocked off his broom by the Dementors effectively enough to make him land without any injuries, not even breaking his glass, which Harry's friends commented on, and was able to levitate and carry the stretcher holding Harry's unconscious body all the way back to school without strain for further treatment from Madam Pomfrey. He also effortlessly summoned the names of the Champions of the Triwizard Tournament with a simple gesture, showing he could easily cast simple charms without needing his wand but preferred to do so with it. This was also shown years before, where Dumbledore levitated the vial containing the blood pact between him and Gellert without even needing to gesture, simply through sheer will. In addition, Dumbledore swiftly summoned the sofa in the house of the Dursleys in order to force them to sit on it, enchanted the glasses he filled with Rosmerta's mead to stay suspended in mid-air and repeatedly knock over the Dursleys, and transported the belongings of Harry Potter to the Burrow with ease. In the film, Dumbledore unleashed such a powerful Disarming Charm to blast down the door to Crouch's office while he was disguised as Moody and send the fake Moody flying a considerable distance away, the impact of him hitting the nearby chair being enough to make the chair stumble backwards and stun him long enough for Dumbledore to breach the distance between them. He simultaneously disarmed and grounded Severus Snape when meeting with him with a single Disarming Charm. He was also able to cast an unknown charm that effortlessly pulled back a fleeing Death Eater during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries. Dumbledore could cast a seemingly modified version of the Silencing Charm that instead of silencing a target, made the surrounding environment's natural events happen without causing any sound and seemingly rendered any sound coming from the area unable to be heard by all but the ones standing in said place, as he did to ensure he and Severus Snape were not disturbed when they conversed about Snape relaying the Prophecy to Voldemort. In addition to making normal use of the Wand-Lighting Charm for light in the dark areas of the Horcrux Cave and Forbidden Forest, Dumbledore was also able to throw the light created by the charm at the centre of the ocean to light the whole cave up. Dumbledore was also very accomplished with the Piertotum Locomotor Charm, as he was able to do so seamlessly and in an instant with ease to animate and manipulate the statues of the Fountain of Magical Brethren during his duel with Voldemort. Dumbledore was also able to skilfully perform the Reviving Spell, as he instantly un-stunned Viktor Krum after Barty Crouch Jnr knocked him out and even managed to partially revive the latter from an extremely powerful Stunning Spell he had unleashed while taking care to not revive him enough to allow Crouch any chance to resist. He warmed up Harry and dried his clothes upon noticing the latter was shivering with a single spell. When playing the Hoggy Warty Hogwarts song, Dumbledore was capable of simultaneously making the entire school rumble.
- Potions: Dumbledore was also considerably knowledgeable and accomplished in Potions, even while still young, as while still a student, he published good papers in The Practical Potioneer, an academic journal regarding Potions, according to Elphias Doge. He showed thorough knowledge and understanding of the properties of Love Potion, as he understood that Love Potion merely brought upon the sensation of obsessive love rather than true love, and also the Mandrake Restorative Draught's potent healing properties, which allowed him to have Sprout and Snape begin producing it as the only way to reverse the Petrification caused by the Basilisk inside the Chamber of Secrets. He instantly recognised the drink inside Moody's hip-flask that Crouch used to drink unsuspected as the Polyjuice Potion and knew about Veritaserum's inability to overcome the defences of expert Occlumens, thus first stunning Barty Crouch Jnr before having him exposed to the Truth Potion in order to ensure he could not resist it, with Dumbledore notably requesting the strongest batch of Veritaserum in order to further maximise Crouch's inability to overcome it. Dumbledore expressed confidence he could brew the Truth Potion for himself if he desired to use it against Horace Slughorn to make him confess the real memory but Horace's Occlumency and ability to make an antidote for it made it null. He also was able to easily recognise the Ageing Potion as being the primary method under-aged students would use to submit their names to the Goblet of Fire by physically ageing themselves to overcome his Age Line and therefore seamlessly created counters to it to seemingly increase the potion's effects to the point of ageing youngsters enough to make their hair white and give them magnificent beards. In addition, it was quite likely that Dumbledore was the one who instructed Minerva McGonagall on how to brew the complex Animagus potion that was needed to become an Animagi and may have even been the one who brewed it for her. He also quickly measured the quality of the Wit-Sharpening Potion Merula presented before him and Snape as being the best one he had ever seen and should Jacob's sibling disguise himself as Potion Master Snape to expose Merula's lies as it was actually Penny Haywood who made the potion, Dumbledore would calmly level with them regarding the Potions curriculum and could detect that by the time they had exposed Merula's lies, the Potion had begun to wear off and thus allow them to leave before they could be caught for it. It was likely that when he went to the Underground Chambers, he had no trouble figuring out which one was the Fire Protection Potion needed to pass through the Black flames Snape had conjured up unharmed and save Harry.
- Alchemy: Apparently having always been highly gifted in the ancient magical science art of Alchemy since his youth, as a student, Dumbledore was already capable enough to earn the interest of Nicolas Flamel, who was considered to be the greatest Alchemist in history, being henceforth famous for his correspondence with the famous Alchemist while still a student, and having also won the Gold Medal for Ground-Breaking Contribution to the International Alchemical Conference during his participation of the event in Cairo. By the time he was an adult, Alchemy was one of Dumbledore's most famous areas of expertise and he contributed considerably to the advancement of the subject alongside his old friend Flamel.
- Magical chemistry: Dumbledore also had a great deal of knowledge on magical substances, particularly the substance of Dragon's blood, as he was considered the foremost expert of it and managed to discover twelve ways to use it practically, among them as a spot remover, as an oven cleaner, and for a potion ingredient. His knowledge and experience in the study of Dragon Blood also allowed him to easily distinguish it from human blood by tasting a small amount of it.
- Magical Law expertise: Dumbledore displayed outstanding knowledge of the laws of the wizarding world, owning several books in his office concerning it. His expertise in the law allowed him to successfully clear Harry Potter of all charges during his trial for underaged magic when he used a Patronus to defend himself. He also managed to give a convincing enough defence of Morfin Gaunt's innocence in the murder of Tom Riddle Senior and the rest of the Riddle family after acquiring the memory that proved it that he would have successfully convinced the Ministry into letting out Morfin had Morfin not died first in Azkaban. He also displayed his knowledge when taking Harry with him to persuade Slughorn in which he showed full confidence his permission would be enough to allow Harry to use underage magic should there be an attack and lectured Harry on how they could not just apparate to his old friend's house due to the laws banning it.
- Care of Magical Creatures: Dumbledore's knowledge and understanding of many magical creatures was very thorough, even being sufficient to be comparable to outstanding masters of the subject of the level of Newton Scamander and Rubeus Hagrid. This was shown when he was aware of the old Dumbledore family legend of a Phoenix coming to any one of them in desperate need being true, and quickly understood how Newt's pet Niffler had stolen the Blood pact vial from Grindelwald. He alongside Hagrid were aware of how to get past Fluffy, something that not even Severus Snape or Lord Voldemort, both highly intelligent and knowledgeable wizards, knew about, with Quirinus Quirrell, who had knowledge and experience in handling dangerous magical creatures, having to get it from the drunk Hagrid under Voldemort's orders. Dumbledore was also extremely adept at communicating with all sorts of magical creatures, such as Phoenixes, Thestrals, Merpeople, Centaurs, and gained much respect from them as a result. His pet Phoenix Fawkes was extremely loyal to him, and even managed to use him in combat in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries to fight Voldemort. He successfully communicated with the Merpeople of the Black Lake to learn the progress of the Second Task of the Triwizard Tournament. He was also notably one of the few wizards that the Forbidden Forest Centaur colony respected and trusted, enough that Dumbledore was able to convince them to return Umbridge safely without any harm done to him. Both the Centaurs and the Merpeople later paid their respects during Dumbledore's funeral, showing their immense respect for him. Dumbledore also was a famous contributor to the defence of Giants from wizarding violence, with his reputation being enough to make Karkus consider aiding the Order of the Phoenix and his ability to give Hagrid the gifts and instruction necessary to steadily convince the giant colony, up until Golgomath killed Karkus, with his advice still managing to convince the surviving giants who didn't join Golgomath to not join the Death Eaters. He also was one of the few wizards and witches who interacted with house-elves with kindness and compassion, giving Dobby and Winky jobs at Hogwarts and encouraging Harry to treat Kreacher kindlier. When Hagrid and Kettleburn unleashed a large number of creatures upon Hogwarts, Dumbledore easily dealt with the many Bowtruckles in the faculty seats of the Great Hall, showing he was also able to proficiently deal with small magical creatures, as well as large ones.
- History of Magic: Dumbledore had excellent knowledge of magical history and lore, having been well-known for his correspondence with the famous historian Bathilda Bagshot while still young, with particular specialisation in the portions of it that pertained to powerful magical artefacts, such as the Deathly Hallows, from his time studying them with Gellert Grindelwald due to their shared obsession of the Hallows. As such, Dumbledore was able to identify James Potter's Invisibility cloak as the legendary Cloak of Invisibility of the Hallows and could see that the Gaunt Ring was the Resurrection Stone. In addition, Dumbledore was able to easily correctly recite the contents of the historical divination poetic book The Predictions of Tycho Dodonus, when questioned by Torquil Travers. He also had thorough knowledge of the history of the Triwizard Tournament, henceforth effectively explaining the reason why it was initially decided the Tournament would no longer be held. Having been one of the few to ever acquire the first-edition copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard and also having translated and read its runic contents, Dumbledore was fully aware of the real stories out of the many changed tales in the world-wide famous Wizarding Storybook and the historical background behind it, therefore publishing notes regarding said topic.
- Astronomy: Dumbledore appeared to be quite knowledgeable and adept in Astronomy, as he owned a special pocket watch that contained moving planets around the edge of seemingly unique astronomy composition, with which he could apparently translate the meaning off to know the current time.
- Divination: Although not having taken the subject and admitting to disliking it, Dumbledore displayed decent knowledge of Divination, as he was shown to be fully familiar with The Predictions of Tycho Dodonus, a Divination book, correctly answering all of Travers's questions regarding the book. His knowledge of the subject also allowed him to effortlessly identify the difference between real and false Seers as well as quickly recognise the usage of the gift, as he was not fooled by Sybill's attempts to impress him as it didn't truly contain any trace of the gift, whereas apart from Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley and Harry Potter, most of the students believed her prophecies were real, but immediately saw her as a genuine Seer once Sybil delivered the Chosen One Prophecy. He was also capable of somehow accurately deciphering the contents of Prophecies, having successfully figured out that the Chosen One prophecy about one with the power to defeat Voldemort was about Harry Potter, not Neville Longbottom, despite both being born almost on the same day, and also that the unique Chosen One power Harry possessed was love. He apparently had a level of skill in the practical aspect of the subject, owning at least a single silver device containing the ability to tell him of events happening elsewhere, which he used to recognise Arthur Weasley had truly been attacked by Nagini and his wounds were severe.
- Muggle Studies: Dumbledore's knowledge regarding Muggles and ability to interact with them was considerable, with him often employing many Muggle sweets as passwords for the Headmaster's office and at one point managing to effectively interact with the Muggles controlling Wool's Orphanage to successfully go to the young Tom Riddle, quickly convincing one of the employers into calling the matron Mrs Cole, who he calmly levelled with and convinced to trust him, needing little aid of his magic against the admittedly sharp woman. He was also well-known for his great contribution to the support of Muggles of wizardkind.
- Healing magic: Dumbledore was accomplished in healing magic as he managed to temporarily control the immensely powerful curse on Marvolo Gaunt's ring long enough to destroy it and return to Hogwarts to receive further treatment from Severus Snape, and easily healed his wound with a healing spell after using his blood to open the passageway in The Cave when searching for Salazar Slytherin's Locket. He also appeared to be accomplished in treating magical creatures, as Cecil Lee took Chiara Lobosca in her wolf form to his office for treatment after she was wounded by Greyback and he appeared to have succeeded in treating her.
- Apparition: Dumbledore was extremely skilled in Apparition, as he was the only known wizard apart from Lord Voldemort capable of Apparating silently. He could transport himself from one place to another with pin-point precision, even when locked in combat, as shown by how he dodged some of Voldemort's spells during their duel by teleporting away before quickly counter-attacking.
- Flying: Dumbledore was an excellent broomstick flyer, as, despite being considerably weakened from having drunk the Emerald Potion, he was able to fly from Hogsmeade to the Hogwarts Astronomy Tower at great speed and was even able to cast a spell while en route to undo the protections around the Castle. He also managed to fly back from "midway" to the British Ministry of Magic to Hogwarts fast enough to still have the time needed to save Harry from Quirrell. In addition, he apparently effortlessly managed to capture the right key out of the Winged Keys to unlock the door to McGonagall's real Wizard Chess obstacle.
- Love: Dumbledore was extremely learned and knowledgeable in the nature of love along with the magic associated with it and showed a remarkably powerful capability to feel true love. This was shown when Dumbledore advised Newt Scamander on how to potentially heal the Obscurial Credence of the latter's Obscurus - by replacing the feelings that made Credence an Obscurial with a sense of love and belonging. Later, he also advised Leta Lestrange to not torture herself over her brother's death, since he himself had not loved his own late sister Ariana enough. Furthermore, Dumbledore was able to understand the true magical power behind a loving sacrifice, telling Harry Potter about the magical protection the latter had inherited when his mother sacrificed herself to protect him from Voldemort, and was also able to inform Harry that his own ability to love allowed him to close the connection between him and Voldemort and repel Voldemort's attempted possession of Harry by focusing on grief when he was unable to perform Occlumency. Due to this, he was also the only person who understood that Voldemort's act in using Harry's blood to help in restoring him to full power actually strengthened the magical protection within Harry to the point that Voldemort could not kill Harry while he himself was still alive. Dumbledore's understanding of love and sacrificial protection also made him cast the bond of blood charm upon Harry to ensure he had further protection from Voldemort for 17 years alongside his mother's sacrifice while living with his aunt, Petunia Dursley. Dumbledore was also able to distinguish between pure, unconditional love which most people felt for each other, and the obsession which was caused by Love Potions. While Dumbledore became "quite asexual" in his older years, after the disaster following his romantic interest in teenage friend Gellert Grindelwald, he evidently cared greatly about his family, close friends, students, allies and the wizarding community. His ability to love gave him the strength to overcome his selfishness and obsession for power and stand up to Grindelwald in order to protect his brother Aberforth when Grindelwald attacked him. His ability to love also allowed Dumbledore to eventually overcome his fear of learning who really killed Ariana and duel Grindelwald again at the heights of the latter's power and defeat him when Grindelwald was threatening to take over both wizarding and Muggle worlds. Dumbledore's ability to love was his most redeeming quality, as it allowed him to become a far better person by protecting many people he cared about, especially when Voldemort rose to power. His ability to love also made him concerned about Harry Potter's safety, to the point that he kept the Prophecy a secret from him earlier on and distanced himself from Harry during the latter's fifth year, hoping it would reduce the connection between Harry and Voldemort, along with protecting Harry several times.
- Study of Ancient Runes: Dumbledore was also proficient in Ancient Runes, as he was able to perfectly understand the contents of his first-edition copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard, which were written completely in Runes. His ability to read and understand the runic language the book was shown by the fact that he had written a series of extensive notes on the book's various stories, providing his own interpretations of the stories' events, as well as recording significant historical background to how the stories had been changed or adapted over the years from this first edition.
- Herbology: Dumbledore had a fair share of knowledge on magical plants and their properties, as he knew of the healing properties of Mandrakes and therefore began the production of the Mandrake Restorative Draught to cure the petrification done when the Chamber of Secrets was opened. Although he was never shown directly handling magical plants, he had no problem bypassing the Devil's Snare of the Philosopher's Stone Chambers to reach Harry in time, showing he was at least adequately skilled in the field.
- Wandlore: From his correspondence with Gellert Grindelwald in their youth over the Elder Wand as it was one of the three fabled Deathly Hallows, Dumbledore became highly knowledgeable of wandlore. Henceforth, he was not only able to easily recognise that the effect that happened during Harry's confrontation with Voldemort was Reverse Spell and explain the reason behind its occurrence to Harry, but he was also capable of understanding the reason of the unique effect Harry's wand had when confronted by Voldemort and its activation only happening when around Voldemort so as to explain to Harry the reason why he was able to break Lucius's wand, but Hermione could break his wand. Finally, Dumbledore was aware that should the master of the Elder Wand die a natural death, he would remain undefeated, and the wand's powers will be destroyed, henceforth attempting to do so by having Severus Snape kill him with the Killing Curse, although it failed due to Draco Disarming him first.
- Indomitable willpower: Dumbledore, in true Gryffindor fashion, had tremendously strong willpower, most prominently shown by his ability to overcome strong emotional attachments and desires and recover from horrendous losses from a young age, and become even stronger from the experience, as shown by Dumbledore immediately standing up to Grindelwald, despite his crush for the latter and desire to complete the For the Greater Good revolution they planned when Grindelwald attacked Aberforth, later showing determination to find a way to terminate the Blood pact he had made with Grindelwald, and later still, after the blood pact was somehow overcome, mustering up the willpower to confront Grindelwald when the latter was at the height of his power in the Global wizarding war, despite his strong fear of Grindelwald knowing who had really killed Ariana, all of which instead of breaking Dumbledore, made him the benevolent wizard respected by most of the Wizarding World. Dumbledore was also confident that he would be able to resist the effect of the Dementors long enough to easily escape Azkaban and was known for having entered Azkaban at least once to recover Morfin Gaunt's memory and left without any effect on him. Additionally, Dumbledore was never intimidated when questioned by high-ranking Ministry of Magic officials, such as Torquil Travers, Dolores Umbridge, Cornelius Fudge, or Rufus Scrimgeour, even when Travers forced him to wear two admonitors, or when Fudge tried to send him to Azkaban, nor was he ever intimidated by Voldemort, not only willing to speak the name his former student had used to terrorise the wizarding Britain but he would even casually refer to Voldemort as Tom in direct confrontation. A lesser display of Dumbledore's extreme willpower was his complete mastery of Occlumency and non-verbal magic, both of which required high amounts of mental strength. Additionally, Dumbledore's encouragement aided his allies in developing a similar willpower, with Leta Lestrange and Theseus Scamander notably resisting Grindelwald's persuasive speech, and Harry Potter being encouraged by Dumbledore's example to be steadfast against Lord Voldemort numerous times.
- Intimidation master: Despite Dumbledore's benevolent personality and famous standing as a well-meaning and good man, he proved himself to be an extraordinarily effective intimidator if necessary. With his unmatched magical power and skills as well as his well-concealed and barely unleashed dark side, Dumbledore was capable of striking fear even into the heart of the extremely powerful Lord Voldemort and Gellert Grindelwald, despite them being, perhaps, the closest individuals to matching him in power and skill, to the point that it was a widely known fact that both feared Dumbledore and refrained from attacking Hogwarts while he was there. Dumbledore's mere presence was so overwhelmingly intimidating that a group of Death Eaters outright ran from him when he arrived during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, with even the intensely sadistic and extremely powerful Bellatrix Lestrange fleeing from him as soon as she was able to. In addition, Severus Snape was quick to plead with Dumbledore not to kill him out of fear of what Dumbledore could do to him despite his own tremendous skills and powers and concern for Lily driving him to contact Dumbledore, and Harry noted that Dumbledore was more intimidating than Minerva McGonagall, a notably strict individual. Dumbledore's experience in intimidation tactics was such that he could effectively intimidate others while remaining calm with just a single sentence, as shown when he not only visibly unnerved Cornelius Fudge and Harry Potter, despite Fudge's standing as the Minister for Magic and Harry's bravery, while just seriously defending Hagrid and not outright angry but he even silenced Harry's own anger at him for trusting Snape despite Harry's tremendous rage over Snape's involvement in his parents death while only indicating Harry had crossed the line and still remaining calm. Additionally, just an expression of calm disappointment was enough to make Harry feel ashamed of his attempt to enter Hogwarts with the Ford Anglia, and his failure to get Slughorn's memory, with Harry on both occasions finding it preferable if Dumbledore shouted at him. At the peak of Dumbledore's wrath, when he was furiously interrogating Barty Crouch Jnr, Dumbledore was capable of exerting such a massively fearsome appearance that Snape and McGonagall were visibly wary of the Headmaster and left Harry visibly terrified and he even described Dumbledore as being more fearsome than Voldemort, acknowledging he knew why Voldemort feared the old but still extraordinarily powerful wizard.
- Conducting: Dumbledore was fully capable of single-handedly leading the singing of the Hoggy Warty Hogwarts song, showing he had apt musical abilities.
- Social networking: Due to his vast reputation, Dumbledore had a vast network of followers and international contacts around the whole Wizarding World, to the point that he was known for knowing all that happens. Indeed, even the abrasive Department of Magical Law Enforcement Head Torquil Travers showed begrudging admiration of Dumbledore's international contacts network while questioning the Defence Against the Dark Arts professor. Later, during his job application meeting with Dumbledore, even Lord Voldemort himself was impressed by how well-informed the new Hogwarts Headmaster was. This was what allowed Dumbledore to be aware of his old friend Gellert Grindelwald being disguised as Percival Graves and his search of the Obscurial that terrorised New York, of Credence Barebone being considered by many to be the long-lost Corvus Lestrange, of the feud between the Kama family and Lestrange family, of Nicolas Flamel being urgently needed at Grindelwald's rally in Paris (communicating with Nicolas via the latter's phoenix-embossed book), of Leta Lestrange's death at Grindelwald's rally, of several Death Eaters being at Hogsmeade waiting for Voldemort's return, of Lord Voldemort hiding in Albania, of Frank Bryce's disappearance (from Muggle newspapers), of Harry Potter's arrival at the Burrow, and, thanks to Severus Snape, of the majority of Voldemort's plans in the Second Wizarding War. Additionally, Dumbledore's contacts allowed him to provide safe-houses for his allies, such as Nicolas Flamel's house for Newt Scamander, the Potter cottage for the endangered Potter family and Sirius Black's 12 Grimmauld Place house for the Order of the Phoenix's headquarters. He was somehow aware of Rita Skeeter's Animagus ability too. However, while this did usually made Dumbledore well-informed, his contacts network was not always a perfect source of information, since in 1927 he was unaware that his relative Aurelius Dumbledore had allegedly survived a shipwreck and was now called "Credence Barebone", in 1981 he was unaware of Sirius Black's innocence, and in 1995 he was unaware of Bartemius Crouch Junior's infiltration of his school in the guise of Alastor Moody.
- Physical aptitude: Despite his advanced age and rather skinny build, Dumbledore was in superbly good physical condition, as he has been seen to be capable of physically performing feats that should be far beyond someone of his age and body, rivalling that of a much younger, fit man: his strength was great enough to raise Harry Potter forcibly off the ground away from Cedric Diggory's body with one hand, which shocked Harry. Dumbledore was also astonishingly fast and agile for someone his age, as shown during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, describing as having sped past Harry and Neville when they blinked away from his arrival, and he displayed sufficient swimming ability to quickly swim with a "perfect breaststroke" and speed surpassing Harry, in the churning sea to reach The Cave, with a considerably large tolerance to climate weathers to be entirely unfazed from the coldness of the waters, whereas Harry was left shivering upon emerging to the grounds of the cave. He also effortlessly jumped to the seventh trunk of Moody, which was used by Crouch to hold the real Moody while disguised as him, and landed gracefully on his feet, with his landing being only of light impact, before climbing back up with Moody on hand without issue. He also was capable of overpowering the weakened and injured Quirinus Quirrell to forcibly and quickly remove him from his struggle with Harry. Dumbledore also displayed considerable endurance and stamina, as after only a brief moment of rest from being incapacitated by the Emerald Potion, he was able to cast a firestorm to fend off the Inferi in The Cave, and quickly afterwards fly from Hogsmeade to Hogwarts. In addition, he had a strong tolerance for pain, as shown when slicing his hand with a knife to use his blood to unlock the Cave, he did not even flinch and went as far as to soberly say the reason why to the shocked Harry.
In a long career, Albus Dumbledore served as teacher of at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, first as its Defence Against the Dark Arts instructor and later as a Transfiguration Professor, (and eventual promotion to Head of the Transfiguration department), making contributions to such learned, scholarly publications as Transfiguration Today, Challenges in Charming, and The Practical Potioneer, ultimately rounding his career off by becoming arguably the finest and most revered Headmaster the school had ever seen. He was also a famous alchemist who worked with Nicolas Flamel, the only known maker of the Philosopher's Stone, and was credited with discovering the twelve uses of dragon's blood.
Dumbledore became the Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot, and Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards. He was removed from these posts during his conflict with the Ministry of Magic under Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge but was reinstated when the Ministry was forced to acknowledge that he had correctly warned that Voldemort had returned. He held the Order of Merlin, First Class, for Grand Sorcery.
- "Do not misunderstand me. I loved them. I loved my parents, I loved my brother and my sister, but I was selfish"
- — Albus Dumbledore[src]
Albus' relationship with his parents was not very clear. However, it can be theorised that he most likely did not hold his father in high regard, as he was imprisoned in Azkaban for magically attacking three Muggle boys who had inflicted permanent psychological damage on Ariana. According to Aberforth, their mother taught Albus secrecy. Given that she read stories to him, it can be assumed that Albus had a good relationship with her, or at least a better one than the one she had with Aberforth. Her death made Albus feel angry and bitter, as it left him with the responsibility of a damaged sister and a wayward brother, and he thought himself trapped and wasted.
Later on, during his conversation with Harry in limbo, he confessed that he truly loved each and every one of his family but was blinded by his ambition and his madness. He had originally intended to use the Resurrection Stone to bring back his parents, so that the heavy responsibility on his shoulders would be lifted. After Ariana's tragic and unexpected death, he planned, instead, to use the stone (if he ever found it, that is) to bring back his parents and his sister to apologise to them. This desire, however, ultimately caused his death: the Resurrection Stone had become part of a ring whose curse infected him the instant he put it on and slowly killed him.
Albus Dumbledore was Ariana Dumbledore's eldest brother and was not nearly as close to his younger siblings as they were to each other. Although he loved his younger sister, Albus was resentful when he had to take responsibility for her after their mother's death, which forced him to stay at home, and thus abandon his ambitious plans. When he and Gellert Grindelwald made plans to subjugate Muggles and take power in the wizarding world, Albus planned to bring Ariana with them, but Aberforth pointed out that she was in no state to go. This launched a three-way duel between the brothers and Grindelwald, and Ariana was accidentally killed in the fray. Albus was devastated by his sister's death and for the rest of his life, Albus never forgave himself for the part he played in her death and always felt tremendous guilt and remorse over it. While he hardly ever spoke of this guilt to anyone, Dumbledore admitted it to Leta Lestrange in an effort to get her to open up about her own guilt and admitted that he had not loved Ariana enough during her life. Dumbledore was also haunted with the fear that it had been him to kill Ariana, to the point that he delayed facing Grindelwald for years.
- "They were not alike: Aberforth was never bookish and, unlike Albus, preferred to settle arguments by duelling rather than through reasoned discussion... In fairness to Aberforth, it must be admitted that living in Albus' shadow cannot have been an altogether comfortable experience."
- — Description of the Dumbledore brothers[src]
Aberforth Dumbledore was Albus' younger brother. Although Albus loved him, the two brothers were not close to each other, as they were very different persons in personality, with Aberforth resenting being in Albus's shadow. Despite not being close, it cannot be doubted that Albus loved and cared for him dearly, evidenced by the fact that even though he resented having to stay at home, Albus still refused to allow Aberforth to stop his education out of concern of his brother's future. While Albus likely alienated him, along with Ariana, during his obsession with Gellert Grindelwald, when Grindelwald attacked Aberforth, Albus immediately came to his brother's aid and fought against his lover, clearly displaying that even at the height of his worst years, Albus still cared for Aberforth's well-being immensely. After Ariana's death, Albus and Aberforth's relationship became very estranged, as Aberforth blamed Albus for the death of the sister he and his mother spent so much time caring for. Although they eventually established a cordial relationship with each other, with Aberforth joining the Order of Phoenix when Albus founded it and attending Albus's funeral, Aberforth and Albus still remained distant as Aberforth was not able to forgive Albus. Albus himself made no attempts to change his brother's opinion about him, apparently acknowledging that he deserved it and accepting it as his punishment for their tragic family past, which Albus had a hand in. However, Albus was nevertheless saddened that he and Aberforth never could reconcile, and he did have a strong desire to make peace with him, as whenever he looked into the Mirror of Erised later in his life, Albus would see himself and Aberforth reconciled, and all of his family returned to him. Albus also came to believe that Aberforth was a better person than he was due to his much greater devotion to Ariana, which Harry Potter disagreed with. Aberforth himself however, eventually changed his opinions of his brother when Harry Potter helped him realise what Albus' intention really was and had forgiven him, as he chose to participate in the Battle of Hogwarts, helping the students and faculty of Hogwarts and the Hogsmeade residents to protect the school where Albus served as Headmaster for almost half of his lifetime, from Lord Voldemort, as well as to allow Harry time to find what he thought to be the last Horcrux.
- "Did I know, in my heart of hearts, what Gellert Grindelwald was? I think I did, but I closed my eyes."
- — Albus Dumbledore to Harry Potter, about his friendship with Gellert Grindelwald[src]
Dumbledore first met Gellert Grindelwald when he was seventeen. They were introduced by Grindelwald's great aunt, Bathilda Bagshot. They got along almost instantly, according to Bagshot. They were ultimately united by their desire to have the Deathly Hallows. They also made a blood pact, and they swore an oath never to fight each other. It is also known that the two were romantically involved. It is said that their relationship was intense and passionate. This was so much so that Dumbledore would, for a time, see Grindelwald in the Mirror of Erised as his greatest desire.
- "Gellert —
Your point about Wizard dominance being For the Muggle's own good — this, I think, is the crucial point. Yes, we have been given power and yes, that power gives us the right to rule, but it also gives us responsibilities over the ruled. We must stress this point, it will be the foundation stone upon which we build. Where we are opposed, as we surely will be, this must be the basis of all our counterarguments. We seize control for the greater good. And from this it follows that where we meet resistance, we must use only the force that is necessary and no more. (This was your mistake at Durmstrang! But I do not complain, because if you had not been expelled, we would never have met.)
- — One of Albus Dumbledore's letters to Grindelwald in their school years as they plotted Muggle domination[src]
They got along for two months until Aberforth, Dumbledore's brother, confronted them over the neglect of Ariana Dumbledore. Grindelwald lost control during the argument and attacked Aberforth. Dumbledore rushed forward to defend his brother, and during the duel his sister, Ariana was killed. Grindelwald fled and Dumbledore ended their friendship, although his romantic desires did not subside.
- "Oh we were closer than brothers."
- — Albus Dumbledore to Torquil Travers, about his bond with Gellert Grindelwald[src]
Grindelwald spent a number of years gaining power in Europe while Dumbledore spent his time teaching young wizards at Hogwarts. While Grindelwald and his army terrorised Europe, Dumbledore remained in Britain and refused adamantly to face Grindelwald. While this was partially due to the Blood Pact, which also kept Britain safe as Grindelwald couldn't attempt an attack as it would mean a duel with Albus, which would violate the Pact, Dumbledore showed he still had lingering affection for Grindelwald, as when he looked at the Mirror of Erised at this time in his life, he saw Grindelwald. Nevertheless, Dumbledore tried to indirectly participate in Grindelwald's defeat, and he used Newt to do it by sending him to America with the injured Thunderbird Frank, knowing somehow Grindelwald had infiltrated America in search for the Obscurial there, which Dumbledore knew he intended to use against him. However, after the death of Leta Lestrange, Dumbledore put aside whatever affection he had for Grindelwald and was determined to break the Blood Pact.
While not having the vial destroyed, he made sure that the wizarding world would survive Grindelwald's reign of terror by providing whatever intellectual and possibly magical assistance he could. After finally succeeding, Dumbledore directly tracked down Grindelwald. Upon finding each other, Dumbledore and Grindelwald initiated a legendary duel of 1945, unleashing all of their extraordinary magical capabilities on each other, the display being so amazing that it remains among the greatest magical battles ever in history. Dumbledore eventually triumphed in the end, despite Grindelwald's mastery of the Elder Wand, becoming the wand's new master and he then brought in Grindelwald to the authorities of the magical world, who imprisoned him in his own prison Nurmengard.
Years later in 1998, Grindelwald refused to give any information to Lord Voldemort about the Elder Wand despite the fact that he was imprisoned, wandless and face-to-face with the only Dark Wizard ever considered greater and more powerful than himself. This seems to indicate that Grindelwald no longer held the views of those who practised the Dark Arts and had contemplated and felt remorse over his actions and that his lie was a last act to repent for his sins, something which Dumbledore acknowledged to be true, implying despite Grindelwald's crimes, Dumbledore still retained some fondness for him and believed that he truly had felt remorse over his crimes during his imprisonment in Nurmengard. It was speculated by Harry Potter that Grindelwald had given his life to prevent Voldemort from desecrating Dumbledore's tomb, possibly indicating Grindelwald still respected and cared for Dumbledore despite all that happened.
Dumbledore's relationship with the famous magizoologist was very close. During Newt's time at Hogwarts, Dumbledore was his Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor. When one of Leta Lestrange's experiments involving a magical beast went too far, endangering the life of another student. Newt did not want to see a friend thrown out of school, so he took the blame for Leta's actions, and was thus sentenced to be expelled from Hogwarts in her place. Albus developed unending trust and loyalty to him after he argued strongly against his expulsion. It is unclear whether the expulsion was enforced or not, or if it was temporary or permanent. However, Newt was allowed to keep his wand. After school Newt probably was in regular contact with his teacher. Newt respected his mentor enough to do tasks for him. Dumbledore told him where to find one ill-bred Thunderbird and later sent his former student to New York to release this beast, whose natural environment was Arizona. At this time Newt helped capture Gellert Grindelwald, who was trying to convince Obscurial Credence Barebone to join his ranks. Newt was extremely loyal to Dumbledore, because when he appealed to his travel ban, he lied to the committee members that he had gone to the United States on his orders. When Grindelwald managed to escape, Albus felt that he would not be able to fight the dark wizard, so he asked Scamander for help. Dumbledore admired him, because he didn't care about power or popularity, which is quite ironic as Dumbledore once craved at least one of these things. He sent Newt to Paris to rescue Credence, who survived battle in New York, but Newt was reluctant, nevertheless he was willing to accept the address of a safe-house. The rumours of Newton's potential travel to France reached the British Ministry of Magic, and a delegation, including Newt's brother Theseus Scamander, Leta Lestrange and Torquil Travers, was sent to Hogwarts Castle to question Dumbledore. Albus only pretended that he did not know anything about it and said that Newt was not a great follower of orders. During the Battle in Lestrange family Mausoleum, a vial of Dumbledore's and Grindelwald's blood pact was stolen from Grindelwald, however, without his knowledge by a Niffler belonging to Newt Scamander. Shortly thereafter, Scamander brought it to Dumbledore at Hogwarts. Dumbledore expressed regret at Leta's death in the mausoleum. Newt in turn did not ask Dumbledore why he would form a blood pact with Grindelwald but simply asked him to destroy it, showing respect for his privacy. Although it apparently took years, Dumbledore clearly managed to abolish the blood pact, allowing him to finally defeat Grindelwald in a legendary duel.
Tom Riddle (Lord Voldemort)
- Voldemort: "You do not seek to kill me, Dumbledore? Above such brutality, are you?"
- Dumbledore: "We both know there are other ways of destroying a man, Tom. Merely taking your life would not satisfy me, I admit."
- Voldemort: "There is nothing worse than death, Dumbledore!"
- Dumbledore: "You are quite wrong. Indeed your failure to understand that there are things much worse than death has always been your greatest weakness."
- — Lord Voldemort and Dumbledore during their Duel in the Ministry Atrium, as part of the Battle of the Department of Mysteries[src]
Dumbledore personally approached Mrs Cole, the caretaker of the orphanage in which Tom Riddle resided to enrol the latter in Hogwarts. Dumbledore met Tom Riddle for the first time there and was unaware at the time that he had just met the person who would become the most powerful and dangerous Dark Wizard of all time. He was however intrigued by Tom Riddle as his powers were surprisingly well-developed by such a young wizard who had begun to use them consciously. Dumbledore was also disturbed by the fact that Tom was a Parselmouth, a rare ability supposedly connected with the Dark Arts, although not as much as the fact that Tom had obvious instincts for cruelty, secrecy and domination which was proved by the fact that Tom had used his magic to hurt the other children in the orphanage. Dumbledore then returned to Hogwarts intending to keep an eye upon Tom Riddle, as he was alone and friendless, a dangerous situation, but at that point Dumbledore, ever the man who staunchly believed in second chances and redemption, still considered Riddle as being not a lost cause and could repent
When then-headmaster Armando Dippet confided in Dumbledore about Tom Riddle approaching him about staying on after graduation to teach Defence Against the Dark Arts — which he only refused due to Tom's age, suggesting he ask again in a few years — Dumbledore advised him against it. Though he explained none of his reasons to Professor Dippet, for the headmaster was just as charmed by Tom as the other professors, Dumbledore felt uneasy about the request and did not want Riddle back at Hogwarts in a position of power.
- "The time is long gone when I could frighten you with a burning wardrobe and force you to make repayment for your crimes. But I wish I could, Tom, I wish I could..."
- — Albus Dumbledore[src]
While Dumbledore was aware of Tom Riddle's transformation and rise to power, he still maintained contact with the latter, even allowing him to visit the school for a supposed job interview. When Tom, or Lord Voldemort as he began calling himself, visited the school, Dumbledore was courteous. However, Dumbledore suspected that Voldemort wanted more than a job, likely wanting to raise an army. He was troubled at some of the rumours about Tom, these were true of course. When Dumbledore turned down Voldemort's request, this sealed the deep resentment Voldemort would continue to feel towards him and he cursed the Defence Against the Dark Arts post out of spite.
It was clear that while many who followed Dumbledore's cause both feared and despised Voldemort greatly, Dumbledore did not share such views as he had known Tom Riddle personally, and although he was committed to defeating him, Dumbledore held no personal resentment nor fear towards the Dark Lord and continued to see him as his former student worthy of being pitied for his childhood and complete inability to understand love, as he had never received any. He even appeared to feel some deep-rooted guilt and remorse over his inability to change Riddle, as he noted with great sadness in his face and tone that he sincerely wished he could have forced Voldemort to repent for his sins in a peaceful manner. Dumbledore understood the evil in Riddle as a result of a string of unfortunate events and performed intensive research on him, eventually discovering his Horcruxes. After Riddle's transformation into Lord Voldemort, contrary to the rest of the wizarding community's fear of saying the Dark Lord's name, Dumbledore, as the only person Voldemort (secretly) feared, refused to be intimidated by the Dark Lord, referring to him as "Voldemort" to others and as "Tom" in conversation with Voldemort himself, a subtle but steadfast refusal to allow Lord Voldemort to dictate the terms of their relationship and a trait that would later be inherited by Harry Potter.
In 1996, Dumbledore and Voldemort met face to face in the Ministry of Magic. Voldemort started a dangerous duel during which he used all of his tremendous magical capabilities in an attempt to murder Harry Potter along with his former teacher. Fortunately for Dumbledore, he proved himself to be worthy of his title as the only wizard who was ever feared by Voldemort and maintained the offensive in the battle, eventually forcing Voldemort to flee. A short while later, Dumbledore became aware of Voldemort's plan to use Draco Malfoy to kill him, possibly as Voldemort realised from their previous altercation that he would lose a duel with Dumbledore head on and thus used Dumbledore's empathy for Draco to give Draco a greater chance to kill him. Dumbledore requested to Snape that he should be the one to kill him instead of Malfoy. Despite dying to Snape in 1997, Dumbledore's legacy allowed Harry Potter to defeat Voldemort once and for all in 1998.
Albus Dumbledore was, at the time of Patricia Rakepick's arrival at Hogwarts, the school's Head of Transfiguration under then Headmaster Armando Dippet, until he eventually succeeded the latter in said post at some point during her magical education. Unlike all of the other staff members, Dumbledore did not let her rebellious streak, a trait for which, seen as it went beyond mere mischief-making, many of his colleagues came to distrust and dislike her for, cloud the fact that she was an exceptional student and spoke highly of her abilities even after her graduation. He welcomed her warmly back to Hogwarts upon inviting her back to the castle to help the staff in their efforts to put a stop to the threat posed to the security of the school and those who dwelled therein by the fabled Cursed Vaults, though it is unknown if he shared Severus Snape's suspicions about her ulterior motives, the latter of whom believed, quite correctly, that Dumbledore trusted her.
After Rakepick revealed herself to be a traitor working for R, Dumbledore did not seem too surprised, showing that he did suspect her but just didn't take it to extreme levels. Regardless, Dumbledore didn't seem to resent her too much for having ruthlessly tortured Merula Snyde, as although he considered it a major priority to neutralise her, Dumbledore openly suggested against Merula Snyde being too focused to kill her.
- "I cared about you too much. I cared more for your happiness than your knowing the truth, more for your peace of mind than my plan, more for your life than the lives that might be lost if the plan failed. In other words, I acted exactly as Voldemort expects we fools who love to act."
- — Dumbledore explaining his feelings for Harry[src]
Dumbledore was well known for the care and steadfast championing of Harry Potter. It was Dumbledore who planned and wanted the infant Harry to be taken from the cottage at Godric's Hollow where Harry's parents had been murdered, taking him away from his godfather and rightful guardian. He then left Harry in the care of Harry's Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon in Surrey, Little Whinging, placing Harry on the doorstep of their home, despite them not being named guardians in the event of James and Lily's death. Despite being aware of the criminal abuse Harry had suffered while living with the Dursley family through a contact, Arabella Figg, he did not step in to prevent the abuse Harry suffered as a child, leaving him to suffer with his magical hating Aunt and Uncle and bullying cousin Dudley. Throughout Harry's years at Hogwarts, Dumbledore provided him with protection and guidance, and supplemented Harry's schooling with additional information about Lord Voldemort.
- "You are protected, in short, by your ability to love! The only protection that can possibly work against the lure of power like Voldemort’s! In spite of all the temptation you have endured, all the suffering, you remain pure of heart, just as pure as you were at the age of eleven, when you stared into a mirror that reflected your heart’s desire, and it showed you only the way to thwart Lord Voldemort, and not immortality or riches. Harry, have you any idea how few wizards could have seen what you saw in that mirror? Voldemort should have known then what he was dealing with, but he did not!"
- — Dumbledore telling Harry about his uncommon nature as a wizard[src]
After the Rebirth of Lord Voldemort, Dumbledore, in an effort to prevent Voldemort from learning certain details through his link to Harry, refused to disclose certain details to Harry. This caused some friction between the two. When Dumbledore explained to Harry that he had done so because he cared a great deal for him and wished to avoid Voldemort learning the true nature of their relationship, Harry was still angry but was more understanding.
By Harry's sixth year, Albus Dumbledore took on the role of providing Harry with additional insights into the origins of Lord Voldemort, as Voldemort's power was growing enormously stronger. He did this largely through the use of the Pensieve. He entrusted Harry with the task of getting a final, crucial memory from Horace Slughorn regarding Voldemort's knowledge of Horcruxes. When Dumbledore was killed, Harry was devastated.
- "You are talented, famous, and powerful — everything Horace values."
- — Albus Dumbledore's opinion of Harry Potter[src]
Harry and Dumbledore forged a strong Student — Headmaster bond, comparable to that between two close family members (most likely the case of a great-grandfather — grandson), in spite of the century in age difference. Harry felt comfortable enough around the impressive, intimidating figure of Dumbledore to shout at him in frustration, cry out of grief, admit to his fears, and entrust him with his life. Dumbledore in return considered Harry to be a talented and powerful wizard who had inherited his parents' best qualities, noting that Harry was a leader of superior quality to himself, as Harry led because others looked to him to lead them rather than because he had ever sought power or authority for himself. He also had great faith in Harry as shown when Dumbledore was in a weakened state and Harry, who had never Apparated beyond a few feet, had to Apparate them both back. Dumbledore told Harry that he wasn't worried because he was with Harry.
Before the final event of the Battle of Hogwarts, after Harry sacrificed himself and was struck by Voldemort's Killing Curse and nearly died back in the Forbidden Forest, his soul went to a place resembling King's Cross Station, where Dumbledore was waiting to speak with him. The fact that Dumbledore himself was there to meet Harry in a place between life and death attests to the bond of fellowship between them. After the war, Harry also named his second son after Dumbledore.
- "I would trust Hagrid with my life."
- — Albus Dumbledore's trust in Hagrid[src]
Dumbledore displayed an innate trust of Rubeus Hagrid in every situation starting from when Hagrid attended Hogwarts. Dumbledore believed that Hagrid did not open the Chamber of Secrets and asked the former Headmaster Armando Dippet to train Hagrid as the gamekeeper so he could stay. Since that time Dumbledore has shown many examples of his faith in Hagrid. For example, Hagrid is the one tasked to protect Harry Potter as he is brought to live with the Dursleys, in addition he is asked to bring the Philosopher's Stone back from Gringotts. Dumbledore also sent Hagrid on other important missions, such as attempting to persuade the giants to join the side of the Order of the Phoenix. Dumbledore additionally was the only one who supported Hagrid's decision to bring his giant half-brother Grawp with him back to Hogwarts after his mission to recruit the giants failed, allowing Grawp to stay in the Forbidden Forest and later having him sent to the mountains near Hogsmeade. Hagrid was also devastated by Dumbledore's death in 1997. He was also right about telling Harry that Snape was on Dumbledore's side. Hagrid in return greatly admired and trusted Dumbledore and took extreme offence to anyone who dared insult the Headmaster.
- Minerva McGonagall: "Professor Dumbledore is a very great wizard, Potter, he has many demands on his time —"
- Harry Potter: "But this is important."
- — Minerva McGonagall regarding Dumbledore's feelings towards Harry[src]
Minerva McGonagall knew Dumbledore for the majority of her life. She attended Hogwarts as a student during Dumbledore's time as the Transfiguration Professor and later went on to replace him when he took the position of Head of the school. She served for many years as his Deputy Headmistress, standing in for him and even replacing him as standing Headmistress on several occasions.
Minerva had great faith in Dumbledore, placing great stock in the differences between him and Voldemort. However, she did not hesitate to disagree with him when she felt the need to do so. She was extremely opposed to his decision to place Harry Potter with his narrow-minded Muggle aunt and uncle, saying that "You couldn’t find two people who are less like us." She also served more than once to bring Dumbledore back on track when he became distracted from the matter currently at hand.
Dumbledore discovered Minerva in tears in her classroom late one evening, after she found out about the marriage of a young love to another woman. She confessed the whole story to him and Albus Dumbledore offered both comfort and wisdom, telling Minerva some of his own family history, previously unknown to her. The confidences exchanged that night between two intensely private and reserved characters were to form the basis of a lasting mutual esteem and friendship.
Minerva had no qualms about displaying her loyalty to Dumbledore. When Cornelius Fudge brought Aurors to arrest Dumbledore in 1996, she boldly stepped forward and announced her intention to fight the Aurors on his behalf. She only stepped back at Dumbledore's insistence when he reminded her that Hogwarts and her students would need her in his absence.
Minerva was devastated when Dumbledore was killed in 1997 during the Battle of the Astronomy Tower and attended his funeral. A year later, when Harry Potter returned to Hogwarts on a mission given to him by Dumbledore, she did not question the decision of her dead friend, but immediately sought to provide whatever assistance she could.
- Albus Dumbledore: "I prefer not to put all my secrets in one basket, particularly not a basket that spends so much time dangling on the arm of Lord Voldemort."
- Severus Snape: "Which I do on your orders!"
- Albus Dumbledore: "And you do it extremely well. Do not think that I underestimate the constant danger in which you place yourself, Severus. To give Voldemort what appears to be valuable information while withholding the essentials is a job I would entrust to nobody but you."
- — Dumbledore and Snape on the latter's espionage[src]
Snape's relationship with Dumbledore was one of close, but not indefinite trust. After indirectly and accidentally sending Voldemort after Lily, Snape turned to Dumbledore to keep her safe. Dumbledore chose to capitalise on Snape's remorse and initiated him into the Order of the Phoenix as a double agent.
As a spy for the Order, Snape silently kept his place within the ranks of the Death Eaters, while informing Dumbledore about their movements. He also adopted the role of secret agent for Voldemort and supplied him with strategic scraps of information about the Order. The content of these reports was often dictated by Dumbledore. It is implied that Snape withheld little, if any, information from Dumbledore that was relevant to the Order's success, while Snape deliberately did the opposite for Voldemort.
- Albus Dumbledore: "Severus... please..."
- Severus Snape: "Avada Kedavra!"
- — Dumbledore asking Snape to end his life[src]
It is notable that Dumbledore did not confide completely in Snape, thereby minimising the potential damage that might occur if Snape was compromised. Snape resented Dumbledore's secrecy, and was offended by this lack of faith in his abilities. However, when Snape discovered that he had been used as a pawn in Harry's own destruction, he was horrified, seeing it as a calculated betrayal of Lily's memory.
Dumbledore clearly underestimated Snape's capacity for love, and years later was very surprised to learn that Snape still maintained his devotion. Furthermore, he complimented Snape's bravery, stating he was far braver than Igor Karkaroff and that sometimes they sorted too soon, leaving Snape dumbstruck. But in contrast to this, Dumbledore overestimated Snape's feelings to get over "old grudges" and therefore assigned him to tutor Harry in Occlumency, which ended badly between the two parties.
- "I am fortunate, extremely fortunate, that I have you, Severus."
- — Dumbledore's gratitude towards Snape[src]
In 1996, Dumbledore was cursed by putting on Marvolo Gaunt's Ring, which was a Horcrux (he put it on when he was distracted by finding out that it was the Resurrection Stone, hoping to talk to his dead family). He managed to contact Severus who was able to contain the curse in his right hand. However, Snape knew and told Dumbledore that the curse would get stronger and stronger and eventually kill him painfully, giving him a prognosis of about a year. By this time, Dumbledore was aware of Voldemort's plan to kill him through assigning Draco Malfoy by threatening to kill his parents. Knowing that he was going to die in a year and to save Draco Malfoy's safety and his soul, he ordered Snape to give him a quick and painless death when the time came. Snape, although resistant at first to killing Dumbledore, carried it out at the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, when Draco Malfoy had managed to bring Death Eaters into Hogwarts. Dumbledore also entrusted Snape with protecting the students once Hogwarts fell into Voldemort's control.
It is notable that despite trusting Snape had reformed, Dumbledore never allowed him his coveted position of professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts, ostensibly under the concern that it would cause him to revert to "old habits". However, it is more likely that he did it out of a desire to protect Snape from the jinx he believed Lord Voldemort had put on the job after failing to acquire the position himself. This same jinx prevented any teacher from lasting more than twelve months at the post, sometimes with fatal results. After being cursed by Marvolo Gaunt's ring and ordering Snape to kill him, Dumbledore finally granted him the Defence Against the Dark Arts post, knowing that if Snape were to kill him, he would be vilified by the wizarding public and forced to abandon the post.
- "Thought the sun shone out of my brother's every orifice, he did."
- — Aberforth Dumbledore on Elphias Doge[src]
Elphias Doge became a close friend of Dumbledore's during their first day at Hogwarts. Elphias suffered from Dragon Pox, and everybody avoided him. Elphias thought Dumbledore was a very great wizard, and a very great person, and believed that his many early losses endowed him with great humanity and strong sympathy, as he stated in an obituary he wrote for Albus Dumbledore, after his death.
Elphias pitied Dumbledore about his father, mother, and sister, and had a highly opinion of him. Elphias soon became a member of the Order of the Phoenix, an organisation that Dumbledore had led. He also attended Albus Dumbledore's funeral.
Elphias also told Harry to never believe Rita Skeeter and Muriel's slanders about Albus Dumbledore's family life, including that Ariana was a Squib. It is possible that Elphias Doge fought in the Battle of Hogwarts.
Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger
Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger were Harry Potter's best friends and, like Harry, they thought Dumbledore was a great wizard. Dumbledore liked them too, despite that he wasn't as close to them as he was to Harry.
After his death, he left Ron his Deluminator (a unique artefact created by Dumbledore himself) and Hermione his copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard. These gifts were proven very useful, as Ron abandoned Harry and Hermione formerly to find his family, and, when he wanted to come back to Harry and Hermione, the Deluminator showed him the way. The trio also read the Tales of Beedle the Bard and learned about the Deathly Hallows. Harry, Ron and Hermione also visited Dumbledore's portrait, after the Battle of Hogwarts.
Apart from Ron, Dumbledore was respected greatly by the rest of the Weasley family. They considered him as the greatest wizard of all time and supported him through everything (except Percy who disbelieved him about Voldemort's return) and was even the Hogwarts Headmaster during the times in which all the Weasleys attended Hogwarts.
Arthur and Molly Weasley always respected Dumbledore and were very loyal to him. Arthur, like Dumbledore, believed in the equality of all witches, wizards and Muggles while Molly considered him a great wizard who doesn't make mistakes. When the Ministry of Magic began to disbelieve Dumbledore and Harry, they supported the two famous wizards rather than the Ministry and became members of the second Order of the Phoenix.
Dumbledore's relationship with Bill happened to be a friendly one since they were both Gryffindors and liked each other. It is very likely that he also had a good relationship with Charlie.
Percy also thought of Dumbledore as a great wizard, but sometimes odd. In 1995, Percy's relationship with Dumbledore became antagonistic when he and Harry claimed that Voldemort had returned, Percy was loyal to the Ministry and participated in discrediting Harry and Dumbledore altogether. When the truth was revealed, Percy learned he had made a mistake and in 1997, attended Dumbledore's funeral.
Fred and George appeared to respect Dumbledore very much. Dumbledore also appeared to like the twins, despite their mischief-making, but knew they were good people at heart. They even joined the second Order of the Phoenix and even Dumbledore's Army.
Ginny Weasley admired Dumbledore a lot and became his student in 1992. Dumbledore comforted and reassured Ginny after she was possessed by a fragment of Voldemort's soul and manipulated into opening the Chamber of Secrets during the 1992–1993 school year. Ginny was one of the first people to learn about Dumbledore's death, and the only one able to console Harry afterwards. Ginny also named her younger son, Albus Severus Potter after Dumbledore.
James and Lily Potter
- "James had shown it to me just a few days previously. It explained much of his undetected wrongdoing at school"
- — Albus Dumbledore to Harry Potter[src]
Dumbledore first met James Potter and Lily Evans during their first year at Hogwarts, where he was the Headmaster. Dumbledore had a good relationship with both of them, knowing them both to be pure souls. James had lent Dumbledore his Invisibility Cloak one of the three Deathly Hallows. After James's death Dumbledore returned the cloak to James's son, Harry.
When the Potters became Voldemort's targets due to a prophecy made about their son and the Dark Lord, Dumbledore attempted to protect them by casting the Fidelius Charm and offering to be their Secret Keeper, but the role of Secret Keeper went instead to Peter Pettigrew, which turned out to be a fatal mistake, as Peter turned out to be a spy, and he betrayed Lily and James to Voldemort, who killed them. Dumbledore was very saddened by their deaths and dedicated the rest of his life to protecting their son, Harry, without giving him any happiness in his childhood. He often told Harry about the great goodness of his parents, and repeatedly consoled him with the assurance that his parents would never ever truly leave him because of their love for him. Dumbledore also believed that Harry's love for his parents was his greatest power.
- "Remember my last, Petunia"
- — Albus Dumbledore's Howler to Petunia Dursley, reminding her of the protection that she gave Harry[src]
Dumbledore had been known to have at least some correspondence with the Dursley family before the birth of their nephew. In 1971, Petunia Evans wrote a letter to Dumbledore asking if she could attend Hogwarts along with her sister. Dumbledore kindly rejected her request due to her being a Muggle, which had likely contributed to Petunia's already growing hatred of magic. Ten years later, Dumbledore illegally dropped Petunia's nephew at her doorstep shortly after the murders of her sister and brother-in-law, despite the fact they were not named guardian candidates of Harry in the events of James and Lily's death. Dumbledore had hoped that doing so would ensure an ancient form of magic that Lily's wilful loving sacrifice for her son had created. However, Petunia and her own husband both resented Harry's presence for the next ten years.
After Harry had received his letter from Rubeus Hagrid, Vernon had denounced Dumbledore as a "crackpot old fool" and refused to pay for Harry's school funds. In response to this irreverent outburst, Hagrid gave a pig's tail to Vernon's son, Dudley Dursley. In the summer of 1995, Vernon was about to throw Harry out of the house when Petunia received a Howler from Dumbledore simply stating, "Remember my last, Petunia." Less than a year later, Harry and Dumbledore were talking about why the former had to stay at the Dursley house despite his miserable existence he endured there.
A couple of months later, Dumbledore met with the Dursleys for the final time in his life. During his visit to their house, Dumbledore went over the protection that the Dursleys were affording Harry, Harry's inheritance of Sirius Black's possessions, and current updates in the wizarding world. In addition, Dumbledore chastised the Dursleys for their indulgence of their son, Dudley. Vernon and Petunia were likely indignant at Dumbledore's remarks.
Dumbledore had also a good relationship with Sirius Black, James Potter's best friend and Harry Potter's godfather, as well as a member of the Order of the Phoenix, an organisation that Dumbledore led to oppose Voldemort and his followers. Like the rest of the wizarding world, Dumbledore initially believed that Sirius was the one who betrayed Lily and James to Lord Voldemort (and helped to condemn him in Azkaban with unproven statements and lack of evidence about his supposed betrayal), but, in 1994, he learned that it was actually Peter Pettigrew. As he had no way to prove Sirius' innocence, despite being Chief Warlock and having the power to give him a trial, Dumbledore compensated by helping Hermione and Harry save Sirius from the Dementor's Kiss, and to escape from his Ministry captors, by means of a Time-Turner and Buckbeak.
The two resumed their friendship, and Sirius helped Dumbledore to recall the Order of the Phoenix an hour after Voldemort returned. However, their relationship was soon strained: Dumbledore forced Sirius to stay at 12 Grimmauld Place on account of his being a wanted convict, and because he had a tendency to act rashly, which could lead him to put himself in great danger. Though his intentions were noble, Sirius could not bring himself to appreciate Dumbledore's thoughtfulness, as he utterly despised the home which brought him many bitter, unhappy memories, and the fact that he was to be alone in the house most of the time made it all the more intolerable. Nevertheless, he still trusted Dumbledore enough to confide in him about how Harry felt Voldemort awaking inside him the night that Mr Weasley was attacked. Dumbledore was devastated when Sirius died, believing that it was mostly his fault and comforted Harry to the best of his ability, and expressed his belief that Sirius was a lively man of wit and courage, with a deep and genuine concern for his loved ones, and would not hesitate to come to their rescue even if it meant putting himself in danger. Sirius' death was also a factor that led to Dumbledore confessing to Harry several things that had been kept secret from him, mainly about the true power of his mother's sacrificial protection, and the prophecy about him and Voldemort.
Another good friend of Dumbledore was Remus Lupin, one of James's and Sirius's dearest friends, and a werewolf. It was Dumbledore who, by several special precautions, ensured that Remus was able to come to Hogwarts to receive a proper magical education despite his werewolf status. He became a member of the Order of the Phoenix after his graduation. Later on, in 1993, Dumbledore gave him the post of teaching Defence Against the Dark Arts, a decision some considered questionable. He even helped Remus control his werewolf-side by having Snape brew the Wolfsbane Potion for him on a regular basis. On his part, Remus confessed that Dumbledore's trust and exceptional kindness towards him meant everything to him, given that the vast majority of the wizarding world shunned him because of the deep prejudice towards werewolves, and Remus felt guilty for betraying this kindness by allowing his three Marauder friends illegally become Animagi and roaming wild during their schooling years. Despite this, after learning of Sirius's innocence, Dumbledore forgave Remus for his supposed betrayal, understanding his Marauder friends only became Animagi to help Remus in his werewolf form and considered it an extraordinary achievement. He re-joined the Order of the Phoenix when Dumbledore reinstated it in 1995, and they both fought in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, where Remus suffered a devastating loss: Sirius died in the hands of Bellatrix Lestrange. Later on, upon overhearing a conversation about Harry's misgivings of Snape, he told Harry that to doubt Snape would be to doubt Dumbledore. In 1997, Remus was devastated by Dumbledore's death after the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, and later demonstrated his faith and loyalty to Dumbledore by fighting in the Battle of Hogwarts.
Alastor Moody was a prominent Auror and Dumbledore's close friend. They fought together in many battles, and the intimacy of their friendship can be demonstrated by an instance where the usually formidable, no-nonsense Moody actually teased Dumbledore for his hatred of the Dementors. In 1994, Moody accepted Dumbledore's offer to teach Defence Against the Dark Arts, but was captured and imprisoned by Barty Crouch Jnr, who impersonated him during the 1994-1995 school year, in order to send Harry Potter to Lord Voldemort.
Dumbledore and Moody fought along in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, where they suffered a devastating loss: Sirius, one of their dear friends, was killed by Bellatrix Lestrange. Moody turned out to be the next member of the Order to die after Dumbledore.
- Harry Potter: "Professor. Your bird — I couldn’t do anything — he just caught fire"
- Albus Dumbledore: "About time, too. He’s been looking dreadful for days; I’ve been telling him to get a move on."
- — Dumbledore regarding Fawkes to Harry Potter[src]
Albus Dumbledore had a very strong bond with Fawkes, his pet phoenix, who served as a messenger and close companion. Dumbledore always looked after Fawkes when he was reborn after his countless deaths and in return Fawkes was extremely loyal to him. Fawkes was willing to take a Killing Curse in order to protect Dumbledore and did so in order to defend him from Lord Voldemort. He also helped Albus escape from several members of the Ministry of Magic when they tried to arrest him. When Dumbledore died Fawkes mourned him by singing a lament and then left Hogwarts and was apparently never seen again.
Order of the Phoenix
The Order of the Phoenix was an organisation Dumbledore formed to oppose Voldemort and his forces. He had good relationships with most of the members, such as his brother Aberforth, Elphias Doge, Minerva McGonagall, Rubeus Hagrid, Severus Snape, James and Lily Potter, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Alastor Moody.
He was also friends with Kingsley Shacklebolt, who believed in equality and fairness for all wizards and witches and Muggles; Arabella Figg, whom he trusted to watch Harry Potter during his years at the Dursleys' house (and heard about the abuse Harry suffered while doing nothing); Nymphadora Tonks, an Auror; Dedalus Diggle; Hestia Jones; Emmeline Vance; Sturgis Podmore; Mundungus Fletcher; and the Weasley family. Emmeline Vance was killed by Death Eaters during the Second Wizarding War.
Other possible Dumbledore's friends who were killed or seriously injured during the First Wizarding War were Edgar Bones, Caradoc Dearborn, Benjy Fenwick, Marlene McKinnon, Dorcas Meadowes, and Fabian and Gideon Prewett, and Alice and Frank Longbottom, who were tortured into insanity by Bellatrix Lestrange and Barty Crouch Jnr
Dumbledore was also friend of many allies of the Order, including Olympe Maxime, the headmistress of Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, whom he met during the Triwizard Tournament, his co-workers Filius Flitwick, Pomona Sprout and Horace Slughorn, Augusta Longbottom, Ted and Andromeda Tonks. Other allies of the Order were Dumbledore's students, Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom, Luna Lovegood, Lee Jordan, and Percy Weasley. He also liked the house-elf Dobby, and pitied the house-elf Kreacher, asking them to work at Hogwarts kitchens.
It is possible that all the members and allies of the Order who were neither killed nor imprisoned, fought in the Battle of Hogwarts (except Arabella Figg, who was a Squib, and couldn't fight. However, she might have helped in another way.)
- Minerva McGonagall: "No other headmaster or headmistress has ever been —"
- Rubeus Hagrid: "No other headmaster or headmistress ever gave more to this school."
- Filius Flitwick: "Hogwarts should be Dumbledore’s final resting place."
- Pomona Sprout: "Absolutely."
- — Hogwarts professors showing their respect for Dumbledore shortly after his death[src]
Except the already mentioned Minerva McGonagall, Rubeus Hagrid, Severus Snape, Remus Lupin, and Alastor Moody, Dumbledore had many co-workers during his career at Hogwarts. Some of his earliest co-workers were: Armando Dippet, the previous Headmaster, Dumbledore being notably among the very few Dippet trusted apparently due to his teaching efficiency; Herbert Beery, the Herbology Professor, who later resigned his teaching post at Hogwarts to go teaching at the Wizarding Academy of Dramatic Arts, who Dumbledore was apparently on good terms with as despite Herbert being such an enthusiast, he trusted Dumbledore enough to confide in him the personal fact that his first act made all his other performances ruined; Galatea Merrythought, the Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor, who retired before Dippet's death; Silvanus Kettleburn, the Care of Magical Creatures Professor; and Horace Slughorn, the Potions master, who was hired twice, and gave Harry Potter his memory, helping him and Dumbledore find and destroy Voldemort's Horcruxes.
After Dippet's death, he became the new Hogwarts headmaster. He also had a friendship with Filius Flitwick, the Charms Professor and Head of Ravenclaw House, Pomona Sprout, the Herbology Professor and Head of Hufflepuff House, and Poppy Pomfrey, the nurse.
Every Hogwarts staff member, with the exception of Dolores Umbridge, both respected and held a high opinion of Dumbledore. Other staff were Argus Filch, the caretaker; Wilhelmina Grubbly-Plank, the Care of Magical Creatures Substitute Professor; Firenze, a centaur and the Divination Professor; Rolanda Hooch, the Flying Instructor; Aurora Sinistra, the Astronomy Professor; Bathsheda Babbling, the Study of Ancient Runes Professor; Septima Vector, the Arithmancy Professor; Irma Pince, the librarian; Cuthbert Binns, a ghost and the History of Magic Professor; Charity Burbage the Muggle Studies Professor.
Dumbledore also knew Gilderoy Lockhart, the Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor (1992-1993), when he was still a student. It's unknown how Dumbledore viewed him, but he apparently found Lockhart's antics to be amusing instead of irritating unlike many of the other professors, as he kindly denied Lockhart's proposal of starting a school newspaper rather than punishing him as many, if not all, of the other staff members have been known to do out of dislike of Lockhart's vanity seeking. Due to his optimistic personality and tendency to see the good in people in order to try to give them another chance, it can be assumed that he may have once thought that Lockhart can overcome his love for vanity and become a great wizard due to his talents. However, when Lockhart erased the memories of two wizards that Dumbledore knew, Dumbledore, having never been fooled by Lockhart's tall tales, easily found out the truth and immediately decided to appoint him as a Hogwarts professor to expose Lockhart's fraudulence, and because Lockhart at the time was the only person willing to apply for the cursed Defence against the Dark Arts post. While he apparently disliked Lockhart's deeds, he nevertheless did not seem to truly hate Lockhart, as he was cordial and polite to him whenever they interacted and after the Memory Charm completely wiped out Lockhart's memories, Dumbledore was compassionate enough that he decided to leave Lockhart in peace and did not expose his crimes, likely as he pitied Lockhart and saw that having completely lost all of his popularity and with the remnants of his magical brilliance now lost to him and his cunning now harmless, to condemn him to being eternally despised by the wizarding community would be unnecessarily cruel, not to say that if he did reveal what Lockhart had did, he would likely be either sentenced to Azkaban or heavily secured in St Mungo, both fates that he seemingly deemed too cruel of a punishment for what Lockhart did.
Another Professor was Sybill Trelawney, who taught Divination. Dumbledore planned on discontinuing Divination but went to her job interview out of politeness, by the end of the interview however, he has summed her up as a fraud. When he heard her conceiving Sybill Trelawney's first prophecy, he hired Trelawney to protect her from the Death Eaters. In 1995, when Dolores Umbridge sacked Trelawney and tried to banish her from Hogwarts, it was Dumbledore who stepped in and told Umbridge he wished that Trelawney would remain at Hogwarts.
Quirinus Quirrell was the Muggle Studies Professor, before he started to teach Defence Against the Dark Arts. It was unknown of Dumbledore's feelings towards him at the time, but he likely saw Quirrell as being a gifted wizard from his academical performances during his time as a student, considering that he had been the Headmaster by the time Quirrell came to Hogwarts and appointed him in first Muggle Studies before having him teach Defence Against the Dark Arts. It was unknown how he felt about Quirrell's frailty or if he knew of Quirrell's bitterness over his bullying, making him desire to be noticed, but it was likely that although he was concerned about it, ever the optimist, he had hoped that Quirrell could overcome this with time. However, when Quirrell met Voldemort when he travelled around the world, and shared his body with him and since then, he served him faithfully, trying to steal the Philosopher's Stone and kill Harry Potter, Dumbledore quickly saw through Quirrell and after he was killed by Harry Potter in 1992, being burned by Harry's touching, Dumbledore openly noted that Quirrell's fate was well-deserved, noting on how Quirrell's hunger for power, hatred and ambitions made him allow Voldemort to possess him and incapable of understanding love, fell victim to it, showing his disgust at his former professor.
In 1995, Dolores Umbridge was appointed the Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor by the Ministry of Magic. She was a sadistic woman who enjoyed punishing students. Umbridge became High Inquisitor of Hogwarts, and later Headmistress. At the end of the year, she was chased by centaurs, and left Hogwarts.
- Albus Dumbledore: "Well, the game is up. Would you like a written confession from me, Cornelius — or will a statement before these witnesses suffice?"
- Cornelius Fudge: "Statement? What — I don't —?"
- Albus Dumbledore: "Dumbledore's Army, Cornelius. Not Potter's Army. Dumbledore's Army"
- — Albus Dumbledore and Cornelius Fudge discussing Dumbledore's Army[src]
Its members were Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom, Luna Lovegood, Fred and George Weasley, Cho Chang, Dean Thomas, Seamus Finnigan, Parvati and Padma Patil, Lavender Brown, Hannah Abbott, Ernie Macmillan, Susan Bones, Justin Finch-Fletchley, Michael Corner, Terry Boot, Anthony Goldstein, Katie Bell, Alicia Spinnet, Angelina Johnson, Colin and Dennis Creevey, Zacharias Smith and Marietta Edgecombe.
All of the members of Dumbledore's Army were devastated by Dumbledore's death, and it is possible that all of them fought in the Battle of Hogwarts. Three of the members were killed: Fred Weasley, Lavender Brown and Colin Creevey. The two defectors, Marietta Edgecombe and Zacharias Smith, are the ones who did not believe in Dumbledore from the beginning and did not participate in the final battle.
During his life, Dumbledore became friend of many famous wizards and witches, such as Nicolas Flamel and his wife, Perenelle, Bathilda Bagshot and Griselda Marchbanks. Nicolas Flamel and Perenelle were over 650 years of age, when they agreed to destroy the Philosopher's Stone to thwart Lord Voldemort's return. Bathilda Bagshot died a few months after Dumbledore, being killed by Voldemort.
- "...or dear Bellatrix, who likes to play with her food before she eats it..."
- — Dumbledore regarding Bellatrix Lestrange's sadistic personality[src]
Bellatrix Lestrange was a Death Eater who fought in both Wizarding Wars. She was fanatically loyal to Lord Voldemort who was her only true love and so, although reluctantly acknowledging Dumbledore as a very powerful wizard, considered her master as the superior wizard. Bellatrix was among the few people who knew of the plan to assassinate Dumbledore, and that Draco Malfoy had been assigned the task of murdering him. Bellatrix did not live to discover that her initial suspicions of Snape's loyalty had been correct, dying during a ferocious duel with Molly Weasley. Dumbledore recognised Bellatrix as an incredibly dangerous and sadistic Death Eater, commenting to Severus Snape that, given the choice, he would prefer to die a quick and clean death rather than fall prey to Bellatrix who tended to "play with her food". Bellatrix also killed many of Dumbledore's friends, such as Sirius Black, Dobby the house-elf, and Nymphadora Tonks.
- "On the other hand, I would advise you, Lucius, not to go giving out any more of Lord Voldemort’s old school things. If any more of them find their way into innocent hands, I think Arthur Weasley, for one, will make sure they are traced back to you..."
- — Albus Dumbledore dismissing Lucius Malfoy[src]
Lucius Malfoy was a prefect during Dumbledore's early years as Hogwarts Headmaster, and was among the Death Eaters who avoided Azkaban after First Wizarding War. In 1991, Lucius's son, Draco, started attending Hogwarts. The Malfoys had a strong dislike of Dumbledore due to his love and acceptance of Muggle-borns and belief in Muggle rights. In 1992, Lucius manipulated Ginny Weasley into reopening the Chamber of Secrets by giving her Tom Riddle's Diary in order to stigmatise her father Arthur and kick Dumbledore out of Hogwarts. This failed because Dumbledore was able to guess the truth, when Harry Potter saved Ginny from the Basilisk. Dumbledore thus let Harry decide Lucius' punishment, which was giving the Malfoy house-elf Dobby his freedom as a reward and let Lucius himself get stripped from his position on the Hogwarts Board of Governors. In 1996, Dumbledore and Lucius fought in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries. Lucius was stunned and imprisoned in Azkaban, failing to give Voldemort the Prophecy about the Chosen one, so Voldemort became angry and made Draco a Death Eater and ordered him to kill Dumbledore, otherwise he would kill his family. During a discussion about Horcruxes, Dumbledore expressed to Harry a certain sympathy to Lucius, as he believed that Lucius was secretly glad to be imprisoned for accidentally getting rid of his master's Horcrux diary and the debacle of the prophecy retrieval. Draco attempted to kill Dumbledore, on Voldemort's orders, telling him that the Dark Lord would kill him, if he didn't do so. Dumbledore showed kindness and sympathy to Draco's plight, sensing he wasn't capable of murder and suggested him to abandon Voldemort, and that he and his mother would be hidden by the Order of the Phoenix. Draco would most likely have accepted but was interrupted by Death Eaters. A year later, the Malfoy family changed sides.
Peter Pettigrew was a member of the Order of the Phoenix and another close friend of James Potter. It is possible that he was a friend of Dumbledore. However, in 1981, Pettigrew betrayed James and Lily to Voldemort in his role as their family Secret-Keeper and faked his own death by cutting off his finger in a crowded London street which he blew up with the Blasting Curse in order to frame Sirius Black. Like the rest of the wizarding world, Dumbledore initially believed that it was Sirius who was behind the Potters' betrayal, and that Pettigrew died confronting him about their deaths. He learned the truth in 1994, when Harry Potter saved Pettigrew's life from Sirius' and Remus Lupin's attempt to extinguish it for his crime. After Harry saved Sirius from the Dementors, Dumbledore congratulated him by saying that as long as Pettigrew was a Death Eater in a life-debt with the last Potter, he would requite. Dumbledore's observation was proven true: Pettigrew attempted to strangle Harry during the Skirmish at Malfoy Manor, but he hesitated when Harry reminded him of the debt, causing the silver hand that was given to him by Voldemort to strangle and kill him.
- Igor Karkaroff: "Dumbledore! How are you, my dear fellow, how are you?"
- Albus Dumbledore: "Blooming, thank you, Professor Karkaroff."
- — Karkaroff and Dumbledore greeting each other upon the arrival of Durmstrang delegation to Hogwarts[src]
Igor Karkaroff was a Death Eater in the First Wizarding War. Dumbledore participated in his trial and saw him betraying many Death Eaters to avoid imprisonment in Azkaban. After his release, he abandoned Voldemort and became the Headmaster of Durmstrang Institute. He met Dumbledore in 1994, when he visited Hogwarts during the Triwizard Tournament. At first, the two headmasters greeted each other as old friends, seemingly showing no animosity. However, Karkaroff would later denounce Dumbledore as a fraud who put Harry Potter's name in the Goblet of Fire and was even more angry to learn about Barty Crouch Snr's attack on Durmstrang champion Viktor Krum, suggesting that the British Ministry of Magic was tainted with corruption. He left Hogwarts after Voldemort's rebirth, and was killed by Death Eaters in either 1995 or 1996. Despite public appearances, Dumbledore thought Karkaroff was a coward.
Barty Crouch Junior
- Albus Dumbledore: "Can you hear me?"
- Barty Crouch Junior: "Yes."
- Albus Dumbledore: "I would like you to tell us how you came to be here. How did you escape from Azkaban?"
- — Dumbledore interrogating Barty Crouch Junior after having exposed him[src]
Another very loyal Death Eater was Barty Crouch Jnr, who was imprisoned in Azkaban by his father, but escaped with the help of his mother. Crouch played a key-role in Voldemort's rebirth, after he captured and imprisoned Alastor Moody, and took his form, to teach at Hogwarts, while Dumbledore thought he was dead. Crouch put Harry's name in the Goblet of Fire and helped him with the tasks of the Triwizard Tournament, sending him to Voldemort. When Harry escaped, Crouch attempted to kill him, but was stopped by Dumbledore. Barty Crouch was given the Dementor's Kiss in 1995. Dumbledore showed cold fury and disgust at Crouch Jnr's actions but was still disappointed and revolted when Cornelius Fudge sentenced him to Dementor's Kiss as it both meant that Voldemort's return could no longer be testified and that the Crouch family blood line had permanently ended. This showed that despite his disgust of Crouch Jnr's actions, he still had some pity for what Crouch Jnr had become.
- Albus Dumbledore: "Am I to take it that you are attacking even without the full moon now? This is most unusual... you have developed a taste for human flesh that cannot be satisfied once a month?"
- Fenrir Greyback: "That’s right. Shocks you, that, does it, Dumbledore? Frightens you?"
- Albus Dumbledore: "Well, I cannot pretend it does not disgust me a little. And, yes, I am a little shocked that Draco here invited you, of all people, into the school where his friends live..."
- — Dumbledore expressing his disgust for Fenrir Greyback[src]
Fenrir Greyback was a savage werewolf who seemed to have had dealings with Dumbledore in the past, as Dumbledore was shocked that he, of all people, had come to Hogwarts the night that the Death Eaters entered the Astronomy Tower. He was also disgusted that Greyback had started to attack outside the full moon and enjoyed the taste of human flesh. Greyback offered to 'do Dumbledore for afters', indicating that he would, possibly, maul him to death after attacking children within the castle. In fact, Dumbledore seemed somewhat disappointed when he incorrectly believed that Draco would invite Greyback into the castle.
Other Death Eaters
It is likely that Dumbledore knew and fought other Death Eaters during the Wars and attended their trials if caught. It is certain that the Death Eaters both hated and yet feared Dumbledore.
Dumbledore's given names could be interpreted as representing the four primary divisions of the British Isles:
- Albus may be the masculine form of "Alba", the Gaelic name for Scotland or an Italian word meaning "sunrise", possibly alluding to the rebirth symbols associated with him (see Phoenix). It is also a Latin word for white, and thus could be meant to invoke Good as traditionally associated with white, or merely to refer to his long white hair and beard.
- Percival is a legendary Arthurian knight from Wales involved in the Grail quest. In Le morte d'Arthur by Thomas Mallory, Percival is both hero of the quest for the Grail and narrator of the tale, as is the case for Dumbledore in parts of the story. It is a name which presumably comes from his father.
- Clodius Albinus was a Roman usurper proclaimed emperor by the legions in Britain and Hispania upon the murder of Pertinax in 193. After Pertinax was assassinated, the praetorian prefect Aemilius Laetus and his men, who had arranged the murder, "sold" the imperial throne to wealthy senator Didius Julianus, effectively crowning him emperor, but a string of mutinies from the troops in the provinces meant the next emperor was far from decided. Immediately afterwards, Pescennius Niger (possibly Phineas Nigellus Black) was proclaimed emperor by the legions in Syria; Septimius Severus (Severus Snape) by the troops in Illyricum and Pannonia; and Albinus by the armies in Britain and Gaul.
- Wulfric is an Anglo-Saxon name found in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and could be representative of England. Wulfric translates literally as "wolf-power", and is reminiscent of another similar name, Beowulf, which means "powerful wolf-bear". The legendary hero Beowulf slew the monster Grendel as a youth, a name similar to Gellert Grindelwald, the dark wizard Dumbledore defeated in his own youth. Beowulf was fatally wounded by a dragon in a sea cave, and the only one who would help him was his squire, an orphaned son of some loyal followers. Dumbledore was also severely wounded by the potion in The Cave and the orphaned follower is obviously Harry.
- Brian is the name of the legendary Irish high-king and hero Brian Boru who defeated the Vikings at the Battle of Clontarf near Dublin. Dumbledore himself was a veteran of many wizarding battles against Dark wizards. However, this name was probably chosen because of its comic mundanity compared to his other four names.
- Dumbledore is an old 18th century English word for 'bumblebee'. It is still used in Newfoundland, Canada, to refer to a bumblebee. Rowling stated she imagined him flitting about the castle humming to himself.
- "Albus Dumbledore" may be inspired from JK Rowling's old school headmaster, Alfred Dunn.
- The name Albus can also come from Latin origins and means pure or white. Albus can also be associated with the Greek Goddess Aphrodite (the Goddess of Love) and viewed as having been "graced" by her. According to Rowling herself, the first names of Albus Dumbledore and Rubeus Hagrid were chosen based on "the white" and "the red", which were considered essential mystical components of alchemy. Dumbledore was given the white for asceticism, "a spiritual theoretician, brilliant, idealised, and somewhat detached".