"They were there, they had found the place: high as a church and full of nothing but towering shelves covered in small, dusty, glass orbs. They glimmered dully in the light issuing from more candle brackets set at intervals along the shelves. Like those in the circular room behind them, their flames were burning blue. The room was very cold"
—Description of the Hall of Prophecy[src]

The Hall of Prophecy was a chamber within the Department of Mysteries, on Level 9 of the Ministry of Magic in London, England. It featured shelves containing records of prophecies,[1] though many of these records, if not all, were destroyed when part of a battle between Death Eaters and Dumbledore's Army members occurred in the Hall in 1996.[2] Its existence was long rumoured within the general wizarding community, but never confirmed by the Ministry itself until 1996.[3]

Description

The Hall of Prophecy in 1996

The Hall of Prophecy, which was entered through the Time Room, was described as a vast, cold chamber with a ceiling as high as that of a cathedral. It was filled with row upon row of towering shelves. On these shelves were hundreds of small, dusty, glass orbs (Prophecy Records), each with a yellowed and dusty label affixed below. Candle-brackets set at intervals along the shelves held blue-flame candles.[1]

The row of shelves directly in front of the door from the Time Room was number 53. Number 54 was to the right of that, then 55, and so on. The light was very dim in the Hall. The candles were located on either end of each row, which meant that from one end, the far end of each row was lost in darkness. Some of the orbs glowed with a faint inner light, but others were cold and dark. The prophecy regarding Harry Potter was located a short distance down row 97.[1]

Prophecies

A prophecy

Each glass orb that contained a record of a prophecy was labelled with the name of the person who made the prophecy, the person whom the prophecy concerned, and the year the prophecy was made. A few of these prophecies glowed a dim, "weird," liquid white from within and were warm to the touch, while others remained "dull and dark as blown light bulbs."[1]

The orbs were also magically protected so that the only people who could lift them off their stand were the Keeper of the Hall of Prophecy, and the subject or subjects of the individual prophecy. Anyone else who attempted to inspect the orb with their hands would be afflicted with instant madness,[4] which is what happened to Broderick Bode when he was forced to attempt to steal one by Death Eaters while under the Imperius Curse.[5]

Known Prophecies

"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies... and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..."
—Extract of the prophecy[src]

During the height of the First Wizarding War, Sybill Trelawney made a prophecy predicting the birth of a person who would have the power to defeat Lord Voldemort. Two couples in the Order of the Phoenix had infant sons that fit the description, but Voldemort targeted Harry Potter after learning part of the prophecy's contents from Severus Snape, then one of his Death Eaters. After his return to power, Voldemort sought to learn the entire prophecy, but was thwarted.[4]

The first prophecy to be destroyed during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries was made by a male seer, and it was about something "new" that would come at the Solstice.[2]

The second one was made by a female seer, and it was about "none will come after" something unknown.[2]

Battle of the Department of Mysteries

The Hall of Prophecy being destroyed during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries

In an attempt to obtain the prophecy, Voldemort sent Harry a false vision of his godfather being tortured in the Hall of Prophecy, predicting that Harry would rush to his rescue. Harry did, and was accompanied by five friends and fellow D.A. members: Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Neville Longbottom, Ginny Weasley, and Luna Lovegood. Once inside the Hall of Prophecy, Harry picked up the orb that had his name on it, and twelve Death Eaters emerged from the shadows, demanding that Harry turn it over. On Harry's signal, all six D.A. members used Reductor Curses. These knocked over the shelves while the students fled and were pursued. At least one Death Eater, Nott, was injured by the collapsing shelves, since he had been stunned by Hermione.[2]

It is possible that as a result, all of the prophecies in the hall were destroyed.

Behind the scenes

  • In the film the prophecies were Orbs of many different sizes, varying from some small enough to fit in one hand to others large as basket+balls.
  • The shelves in the movie were seemingly stacked, instead of proper shelves, but panels supporting each other, as the shelves collapsing actually dismantled themselves with the many orbs of prophecies.

Appearances

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 34 (The Department of Mysteries)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 35 (Beyond the Veil)
  3. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 3 (Will and Won't)
  4. 4.0 4.1 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 37 (The Lost Prophecy)
  5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 26 (Seen and Unforeseen)


Department of Mysteries
Level 9, Ministry of Magic
Hall of Prophecy · Death Chamber · Brain Room · Time Room · Space Chamber · Love Chamber
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