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"It doesn't have to be a Basilisk fang. It has to be something so destructive that the Horcrux can't repair itself. Basilisk venom only has one antidote, and it's incredibly rare –"
Hermione Granger regarding Basilisk venom[src]

Basilisk venom was an extremely poisonous and corrosive substance generated by the said species.[1][2]


"The basilisk venom had burned a sizzling hole right through it."
T. M. Riddle's Diary destroyed with Basilisk venom[src]

Basilisk venom was extremely powerful, and could kill a person within a little more than a minute at best, making the person drowsy and blurry-visioned before they died.[1] This powerful venom was one of the few substances known to be capable of destroying Horcruxes, causing them fatal damage that could not be repaired.[2] It only had one known antidote: phoenix tears, which happened to be very rare, decreasing the venom's deadliness.[1][2]

The venom's potency was apparently extremely long-lasting, as Hermione Granger was able to use the venom from the fang of a Basilisk that was dead for nearly five years.[3]

Basilisk venom was one of the few poisons that was not curable by bezoars.[2]


"I'm going to sit here and watch you die, Harry Potter. Take your time. I'm in no hurry."
— The memory of Tom Riddle awaiting Harry Potter's death from Basilisk venom in the Chamber of Secrets[src]

In 1993, Harry Potter stabbed the roof of the Basilisk's mouth with the Sword of Gryffindor and ended up getting a fang splintered into his arm. Tom Riddle described the venom as being able to kill Harry in a little more than a minute, though Fawkes's tears healed Harry's arm and cleansed the poison.[1]

After being healed, Harry took the fang and stabbed Riddle's diary, destroying that Horcrux beyond magical repair.[1] Because Harry had stabbed the Basilisk with the sword, it was imbued with Basilisk venom and was therefore able to destroy Horcruxes and poison opponents that it cut through as well.[3]

Albus Dumbledore used the Sword of Gryffindor, which had been imbued with the basilisk's venom three years prior, to destroy Marvolo Gaunt's Ring.[4]

Ron Weasley used the Sword of Gryffindor to destroy Salazar Slytherin's Locket.[5]

In 1998, during the Battle of Hogwarts, Ron and Hermione went down to the Chamber of Secrets and destroyed Helga Hufflepuff's Cup with a Basilisk fang.[3] In the same battle, Neville Longbottom used the Sword of Gryffindor to kill Nagini.[6]


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Chapter 17 (The Heir of Slytherin)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 6 (The Ghoul in Pyjamas)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 31 (The Battle of Hogwarts)
  4. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 13 (The Secret Riddle)
  5. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 19 (The Silver Doe)
  6. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 36 (The Flaw in the Plan)