The Battle of Hogwarts was the final battle of the Second Wizarding War. It took place on 2 May, 1998, within the castle and on the grounds of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. When Lord Voldemort learned that Harry Potter was in the castle to locate and destroy one of his final Horcruxes, he ordered every Death Eater and creature that had pledged loyalty to him to attack the school. Dumbledore's Army communicated the need to fight to the Order of the Phoenix and their other allies, leading to a large-scale battle. Lord Voldemort led his forces from the Shrieking Shack while Kingsley Shacklebolt and Minerva McGonagall led the defenders of Hogwarts. The battle ended with a decisive victory for the Order and the D.A., with many Death Eaters and Voldemort himself dead. It was the most devastating battle of the war, with casualties including Lord Voldemort and Bellatrix Lestrange, but also Remus Lupin, Nymphadora Tonks, Severus Snape, Fred Weasley, Colin Creevey and at least fifty more who fought against Voldemort and his Death Eaters. It is also assumed to be the final conflict in which the Elder Wand took part.
At the climax of the Battle of the Astronomy Tower the previous year, Albus Dumbledore was killed by then-Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, Severus Snape. Dumbledore, however, had left Harry Potter with a final task: to find, and destroy the remaining Horcruxes that Voldemort created at different points in his life. Over several months, two Horcruxes had been found: Salazar Slytherin's locket which had been destroyed by Ron Weasley in December of 1997 and the cup of Helga Hufflepuff which they had stolen from Bellatrix Lestrange's vault at Gringotts Wizarding Bank the day before the battle. Two other Horcruxes had also been destroyed already: Voldemort's old diary that he had during his school years at Hogwarts was destroyed in 1993 by Harry Potter, and the ring of Cadmus Peverell by Dumbledore sometime in July, 1996. After learning that his Horcruxes were being systematically hunted down and destroyed, Voldemort ordered a massive attack on Hogwarts Castle in an attempt to stop Harry Potter from destroying one of the remaining Horcruxes (Rowena Ravenclaw's Diadem), which was hidden in the Room of Requirement.
- "Well, it’s not really like Hogwarts any more,"
- —Neville about the situation in to Harry[src]
On the First of August, 1997, the current Minister for Magic, Rufus Scrimgeour, and the Head of the Auror Office was captured by Voldemort and interrogated for the whereabouts of Harry Potter. However, in one last brave act for Harry, Rufus Scrimgeour told Voldemort nothing, and was subsequently killed. This placed the Ministry of Magic under the control of Voldemort and his Death Eaters. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry also fell under Voldemort's influence, and he appointed Severus Snape as new headmaster (ironically, Snape had killed the previous headmaster, Albus Dumbledore, just a few months before). The Carrow siblings were also appointed as teachers.
Many school subjects were revised at Voldemort's will; Defence Against the Dark Arts was more or less taught as a Dark Arts class, and Muggle Studies became a compulsory class for indoctrinating hatred against Muggles and Muggle-borns. Snape and the Carrows enforced Voldemort's agenda brutally at Hogwarts. Students given detention were subjected to the Cruciatus Curse - sometimes by other students. As a result of this, a band of students began to fight back very early on in the 1997–1998 school year, led by seventh year Neville Longbottom and sixth years Ginny Weasley and Luna Lovegood. This group stood as the successor to the original Dumbledore's Army, founded by Harry, Ron, and Hermione in 1995.
Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger apparated into the main street of the village of Hogsmeade while wearing Harry's Invisibility Cloak and were immediately detected by a group of Death Eaters due to the fact that they had triggered a Cauterwauling Charm. They all tried to Disapparate but they had been trapped because they had been bound by an Anti-Disapparation Jinx. The Death Eaters tried to reveal their whereabouts by Summoning the Invisibility Cloak, the cloak however refused to be moved due to the fact that it was the Cloak of Legend from The Tale of the Three Brothers. The Death Eaters then sent Dementors to locate Harry, Ron, and Hermione. They agreed that sending Dementors would be a successful capture, as Harry would be given to Voldemort soul-less. Harry repelled them with his Patronus to send them away. They were then pulled into the Hog's Head by Aberforth Dumbledore. He told the Death Eaters that he had produced the Patronus and showed it was a goat, not a stag, and had set off the Cauterwauling Charm by letting his cat out. Aberforth fed Harry, Ron, and Hermione and explained that he had been watching them all throughout their journey hunting Horcruxes by Sirius Black's two-way mirror, purchased from Mundungus Fletcher. Aberforth explained many things to the trio, including Albus's involvement with Grindelwald, Ariana, and Ariana's tragic death due to the three-way duel Aberforth, Albus, and Grindelwald fought. Aberforth then led Harry, Ron and Hermione to a secret passage from his pub to the Room of Requirement where members of Dumbledore's Army had been hiding during the previous few weeks. Neville Longbottom greeted them enthusiastically, and then led Harry, Ron, and Hermione into Hogwarts.
Arrival at Hogwarts and start of the battleNeville, Hermione, Ron, and Harry arrived in the Room of Requirement and were greeted by many members of Dumbledore's Army who were hiding from the Carrows and Severus Snape. Neville had informed many of them to return to Hogwarts to fight and help Harry find whatever it was that he needed. When Harry realised how loyal they were being to him and after Ron's reminder that he didn't need to do everything alone, he accepted help and told them that Voldemort was on the way to Hogwarts. Harry told them that they were in need of something related to Ravenclaw, and Cho and Luna helped him figure out that it could possibly have been the lost diadem. The trio split up after that, Ron and Hermione travelling down into the Chamber of Secrets to obtain basilisk venom filled fangs in order to destroy Helga Hufflepuff's Cup and any future Horcruxes that are found, while Harry went with Luna Lovegood to the Ravenclaw common room to have a look at a statue of Rowena Ravenclaw wearing her diadem. Alecto Carrow, the Muggle Studies teacher and Death Eater, appeared while the two were searching the room, but Luna Lovegood managed to Stun her. Amycus Carrow and Professor McGonagall arrived next, McGonagall wondering why Harry would come back to Hogwarts, least of all Ravenclaw Tower. Amycus spat in her face, and Harry, feeling intense rage at the Death Eater, successfully used the Cruciatus Curse on him for the first time. Harry then told McGonagall that Voldemort was trying to get into Hogwarts.
Minerva McGonagall summoned the other Heads of House, and they all told Harry that they would do everything in their power to slow down Voldemort's arrival. Each of them put up strong defences, although they all knew Voldemort would get through them eventually. Hogwarts was soon fortified for the coming attack, while Order of the Phoenix members arrived, also summoned by Neville Longbottom. Students old enough to fight stayed and younger students were evacuated by Poppy Pomfrey and Argus Filch. Flitwick, McGonagall and Sprout took groups of students to the tallest towers while Arthur Weasley, Remus Lupin and Kingsley Shacklebolt took others onto the grounds. Fred and George Weasley defended the secret passages of Hogwarts. At that same moment, Voldemort ordered his Death Eaters to assault Hogwarts.
First part of battleVoldemort magically amplified his voice so it was heard throughout Hogwarts and Hogsmeade to demand those inside the castle hand Harry Potter over to him or his army of Death Eaters and dark creatures would attack. When Pansy Parkinson suggested that they take the deal, practically every student, excluding the Slytherin students, in the hall threatened to curse her, and she was instructed to leave by McGonagall. Those not willing to fight or not of age (seventeen years or older) were sent out of the school through the Hog's Head, particularly the students of Slytherin (who were sent out first). The Death Eaters stormed Hogwarts with the aid of the Acromantulas, Giants, Dementors, and Ministry officials. It was in this part of the battle that Fred Weasley, Remus Lupin, Nymphadora Tonks and Colin Creevey were killed by Death Eaters. The Hogwarts defenders were able to fend off the Death Eaters using an array of tactics, including mandrakes and magical plants, bewitched suits of armour, and wand duels. Peeves the Poltergeist also aided the defenders by dropping giant worms on the Death Eaters' heads.
Room of RequirementHarry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger found Ravenclaw's Diadem in the Room of Hidden Things transformation of the Room of Requirement. But before they could remove or destroy it, Draco Malfoy, Vincent Crabbe, and Gregory Goyle arrived. Crabbe tried to kill Ron and Hermione with Killing Curses and accidentally destroyed the diadem with Fiendfyre, also killing himself in the process. Harry rescued Malfoy, and Ron and Hermione rescued Goyle, by flying out on broomsticks.
- "Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived, come to die."
- —Lord Voldemort about to kill Harry[src]
Using his connection with Voldemort's mind, Harry Potter uncovered Voldemort's whereabouts in the Shrieking Shack. En route to attack Voldemort, over a hundred Dementors attacked the trio. Harry nearly welcomed an oblivion that would come with a Dementor's Kiss, but the arrival of Luna Lovegood, Seamus Finnigan and Ernie Macmillan roused Harry to produce a Patronus that drove off the Dementors. Upon arriving at the Shack, Harry witnessed Voldemort order Nagini to murder Severus Snape, believing that unless Snape was killed by him, he would not gain mastery over the Elder Wand. Snape's dying act was to pass on several of his memories to Harry. At this point, Voldemort ordered an hour-long ceasefire, with the request that Harry Potter give himself up. If he failed to turn himself over, Voldemort declared he would personally enter the battle.
- "If you continue to resist me, you will all die, one by one. I do not wish this to happen. Every drop of magical blood spilled is a loss and a waste... I command my forces to retreat immediately. You have one hour... I speak now, Harry Potter, directly to you... I shall wait for one hour in the Forbidden Forest. If, at the end of that hour, you have not come to me, have not given yourself up, then battle recommences. This time, I shall enter the fray myself, Harry Potter, and I shall find you, and I shall punish every last man, woman, and child who has tried to conceal you from me. One hour."
- —Voldemort orders the one-hour ceasefire and retreat[src]
After viewing Snape's memories which revealed that Harry himself was, in fact, a Horcrux and that he needed to be killed for Lord Voldemort to die, Harry went into the Forbidden Forest to sacrifice himself. Before doing so, he used the Resurrection Stone to bring back his parents, Sirius Black, and Remus Lupin for emotional support. Due to Voldemort's use of Harry's blood in the process of creating himself a new body in 1995 in the graveyard of Little Hangleton, Harry survived the Killing Curse from Voldemort, although he was briefly knocked unconscious. As an additional result of this, Harry's sacrifice put a protection on the defenders of Hogwarts from Voldemort like his mother had once done for him.
In those unconscious moments, Harry spoke to the spirit of Albus Dumbledore, who explained that the bit of Voldemort's soul inside of Harry was gone, and he could choose to go back to the world of the living or go on into the world of the dead. Harry accepted the choice to return, and feigned death while Voldemort's forces cheered in assumed victory.
Fall of the Dark Lord
After waking, Harry discovered that Voldemort had also been unconscious during those brief moments. Voldemort suffered an additional betrayal when Narcissa Malfoy confirmed that Harry was dead, only wanting to get close enough to him to ask if her son, Draco Malfoy, was still alive. Upon learning of Draco's survival, Narcissa lied to the Dark Lord, saying that Harry Potter was in fact deceased. After Rubeus Hagrid carried Harry's "corpse" back to Hogwarts, guided by the Death Eaters walking in a victory march, Voldemort announced Harry's 'death' to the defenders of Hogwarts. The defenders came out of the castle and upon seeing Harry dead they screamed and shouted at the Death Eaters in anger. Neville Longbottom charged forth and attempted to attack Voldemort, but was quickly subdued. Voldemort then asked Neville to join the Death Eaters since he was of pure blood, but Neville refused. In response to Neville's defiance, the Dark Lord placed a Full Body-Bind Curse on Neville, freezing him to the spot. He then placed the Sorting Hat atop his head and set it aflame.
The centaurs and Grawp then attacked the Death Eaters, giving Harry time to disappear under his Invisibility Cloak in the confusion. Neville broke free of Voldemort's curse, because of Harry's sacrifice, and pulled Godric Gryffindor's Sword from the Sorting Hat. In one stroke, Neville used the blade to behead Nagini, thus destroying the last of Voldemort's Horcruxes and rendering him mortal. Voldemort, alongside his now weakened army, forced his way into Hogwarts.
Additional Hogwarts allies arrived at this time: Legions of knife-wielding house-elves led by Kreacher; the residents of Hogsmeade and the friends and families of every remaining student, all led by Charlie Weasley and Professor Slughorn. A flock of Thestrals led by Buckbeak, and the Centaurs also threw themselves into the battle.In the midst of all the chaos, Harry, hidden under the Invisibility Cloak, was buffeted into the Great Hall. Outnumbered by the defenders and allies of Hogwarts, the Death Eaters are defeated one-by-one. Yaxley is defeated by George Weasley and Lee Jordan. Dolohov is defeated by Flitwick. Walden Macnair is defeated by Hagrid. Greyback is defeated by Neville and Ron. Rookwood is defeated by Aberforth. Thicknesse is defeated by Arthur and Percy. The Malfoys just ran through the battle looking for their son. The rest are stabbed by house-elves, shot with arrows by the centaurs, brought down by spells, or trampled by the charging army until only Bellatrix Lestrange and Voldemort remained.
Whilst the Dark Lord simultaneously duelled Minerva McGonagall, Kingsley Shacklebolt, and Horace Slughorn and became furious at his inability to defeat them, Bellatrix also dueled three opponents; Hermione Granger, Luna Lovegood, and Ginny Weasley. Equal in power to all three, Bellatrix dueled fiercely, before sending a Killing Curse that missed Ginny by a scant inch. Furious at Bellatrix's attempted murder of her daughter, Molly Weasley forced the three girls to step aside and dueled Bellatrix herself; refusing all aid. Bellatrix's refusal to take her opponent seriously ultimately proved her undoing; whilst laughing at Molly, she was hit over the heart by a well aimed curse, killing her. Voldemort was furious at the loss of his best and last lieutenant, and after blasting his three opponents aside, directed his wand at Molly. Fortunately, Harry cast a Shield Charm between Molly Weasley and Voldemort before the latter could raise his wand. Harry then revealed himself to the survivors, giving them hope again.
The cheering crowd retreated to the walls of the hall and watched then as the two great nemeses, Lord Voldemort and Harry Potter, bantered and circled each other. Harry revealed to Voldemort that Snape had always been a spy for Dumbledore, ever since Voldemort threatened Lily Potter's life. Harry also revealed that Snape was never the true master of the Elder Wand. It had been Draco Malfoy that was the rightful master, and that Harry had defeated Malfoy weeks ago, thereby gaining the allegiance of the Elder Wand.
- Harry Potter: " ...Snape never beat Dumbledore! Dumbledore's death was planned between them! Dumbledore intended to die undefeated, the wand's last true master! If all had gone as planned, the wand's power would have died with him, because he never had it won from him!"
- Lord Voldemort: "But then, Potter, Dumbledore as good as gave me the wand! I stole the wand from its last master's tomb! I removed it against its last master's wishes! Its power is mine!"
- Harry Potter: "...Didn't you listen to Ollivander? The wand chooses the wizard...The Elder Wand recognized a new master before Dumbledore died, someone who never laid a hand on it. The new master removed the wand from Dumbledore against his will, never realizing exactly what he had done, or that the world's most dangerous wand had given him its allegiance...The true master of the Elder Wand was Draco Malfoy."
- — Harry revealing the true master of the Elder Wand to Voldemort during their final confrontation.[src]
Harry suggested that Voldemort try to feel remorse, mentioning that he would become less than human if he did not, at which Voldemort was shocked. Moments later, Voldemort cast a Killing Curse with the Elder Wand at Harry, who simultaneously cast his own Disarming Charm using Draco Malfoy's wand. However, because the Elder Wand rightfully belonged to Harry, the Killing Curse rebounded at Voldemort and ended his life once and for all. The Second Wizarding War had ended with a decisive victory for the Order of the Phoenix and Dumbledore's Army.
- "...Fred, Tonks, Lupin, Colin Creevey, and fifty others who had died fighting him."
- —After the battle.[src]
There were many casualties in this epic battle. The first person known to die in the battle was Vincent Crabbe, who tried to use the Fiendfyre curse on Harry Potter, only to have it backfire and kill him. Fred Weasley was killed in an explosion caused by an unknown spell that was possibly cast by Augustus Rookwood. Remus Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks were also killed by Antonin Dolohov and Bellatrix Lestrange, respectively. Colin Creevey was found dead during a lull in the fighting by Neville Longbottom and Oliver Wood, though it is unknown how he died or who killed him. Severus Snape was killed by Nagini on Voldemort's orders.
When the battle erupted into its final stage, more people died on both sides. Neville Longbottom beheaded Nagini with Godric Gryffindor's Sword. Bellatrix Lestrange died at the hands of Molly Weasley after Bellatrix nearly killed Ginny. The final duel saw Harry battle with Lord Voldemort and kill him. There were at least fifty lives mentioned to have been lost on the side of the defenders of Hogwarts that night.
List of known deaths
|Person||Killed by||Cause of death|
|Fred Weasley||Unknown, possibly Augustus Rookwood||Explosion caused by unknown spell (possibly Expulso or Confringo)|
|Remus Lupin||Antonin Dolohov||Duel|
|Nymphadora Tonks||Bellatrix Lestrange||Duel|
|Severus Snape||Nagini (ordered by Voldemort)||Snakebite|
|Vincent Crabbe||Himself (by accident)||Fiendfyre|
|Bellatrix Lestrange||Molly Weasley||Duel|
|Lord Voldemort||Harry Potter/himself||Harry's mastery of the Elder Wand, the destruction of Voldemort's Horcruxes, and his own rebounding Killing Curse, killing him once and for all.|
|Fifty others||Random Death Eaters and other combatants||Various|
Behind the scenes
- It is likely there were other deaths not mentioned. All Death Eaters were defeated; whether they were all killed is unknown, but those who survived most likely went to Azkaban. Few others, for example the Malfoys, did not go to Azkaban due to a change of heart at the end.
- The death of Vincent Crabbe is not in the film; instead Gregory Goyle will be killed, as Crabbe will not appear in the film.
- The death of Colin Creevey is not in the film; instead Nigel Wespurt will be killed, as Colin will not appear in the film.
- Lavender Brown has been reported to die in test screenings. However, it is unknown if this will remain in the film's theatrical release.
- Scabior will also die fighting Neville on the Covered Bridge and falling to his death when the bridge is destroyed.
- The final duel between Harry and Voldemort in the Great Hall is not in the film, instead Harry and Voldemort's final duel is at the Entrance Courtyard.
- In the film, Molly Weasley kills Bellatrix Lestrange with a Killing Curse.
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (video game)
- Harry Potter LEGO Sets
Notes and references
- ↑ Video clip of J.K. Rowling from the documentary J.K. Rowling: A Year in the Life
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 "A transcript of a web chat with J.K. Rowling" from The Leaky Cauldron