The Fundamental Laws of Magic were a number of principles about the general nature of magic. They were formulated by the magical theoretician Adalbert Waffling, the first of which is quoted above. It was unknown how many Laws Waffling outlined.
In essence, the first Fundamental Law of Magic states that, as a rule, the further somebody goes towards meddling in the deepest underlying laws of magic, the more drastic and terrible the consequences will be. As this is only a general principle, the exact consequences may vary, with different consequences for different violations. For example, those who deliberately split their soul in the making of a Horcrux will be doomed to eternal suffering in Limbo, unable to move on or return as a ghost.
During Albus Dumbledore's discussion of the first law in his notes on the well known fairytale "The Warlock's Hairy Heart" (in The Tales of Beedle the Bard ), he mentions that "in seeking to become super-human this foolhardy young man renders himself inhuman".
Likewise, Dumbledore also notes that the creation of a Horcrux evokes the first law, tampering with the essence of self or rather "dividing what was clearly not meant to be divided...body and soul".
Evokers of the first law
Behind the scenes
- Voldemort created the number of Horcruxes he did solely in order to fulfil his perennial goal of evading death. Therefore, when he was finally killed the result is almost as karmic as the aforementioned warlock's: in seeking to fix himself immutably to one plane forever he renders himself eternally removed from all of them, save "the between-space".
- It may be that the consequences of the first Fundamental Law of Magic (when evoked) mimic Newton's Third Law of Motion: For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
- In this light, it has been suggested that Merope Gaunt may also have been a victim of this law - she is suspected by Dumbledore of having been using Amortentia to tamper with affairs of the heart, which appear to be inextricably linked with the essence of self in the Warlock's Hairy Heart (and indeed, love is counted amongst the deepest mysteries of magic).
- This theory is supported even further by the grave and ironic consequences that Merope is seen to have incurred in her quest to magically manufacture true love, e.g. driving away forever the very person she sought to be eternally bonded with, as well as rendering herself devoid of all positive feeling (depressed) in her attempt to reproduce one particular emotion above all others. Likewise, the only tangible thing her struggle for a union of true love ever produced was a being completely incapable of even comprehending the notion, who would go on to preach a campaign of hatred long after her death.
- The Tales of Beedle the Bard (Mentioned only)