Kendra Dumbledore (c. 1851 – Summer 1899) was a Muggle-born witch, the wife of Percival Dumbledore. She was also the mother of Albus, Aberforth, and Ariana Dumbledore. When her daughter Ariana was fourteen years old she lost control of her magic, causing an explosion that killed Kendra. After her death, Albus (her oldest son) was left to care for his younger siblings.
After her daughter was attacked by Muggle boys who saw her perform magic, Kendra moved the family to Godric's Hollow, while her husband was imprisoned in Azkaban for taking revenge upon the Muggles who hurt Ariana Dumbledore. Percival Dumbledore did not reveal his reasons to the Ministry of Magic, and both he and Kendra kept the attack a secret, out of fear that Ariana would be considered a threat to the International Statute of Wizarding Secrecy and confined to St Mungo's, as the attack left the young witch mentally disturbed and unable to control her magic.
While her husband was imprisoned and her sons attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Kendra took care of Ariana. Rumours, spread by people such as Muriel and her cousin Lancelot, suggested that Kendra was keeping her "Squib" daughter locked up in a cellar. When Ariana was fourteen years old, she lost control of her magic, and the explosion killed Kendra.
After Kendra's death, the cause of which "nobody ever seemed sure" (according to Muriel), Ariana was taken care of by her older brother Albus. She was eventually killed in a three-way duel between Albus, Aberforth, and Gellert Grindelwald.
Kendra had jet black hair which she tended to wear in a high bun, dark eyes, high cheekbones, and a straight nose. Harry Potter, upon seeing a photograph of her, thought she looked Native American, possibly indicating her heritage. He also thought her face had a "carved quality", and noted her expression as being "formally composed".
Personality and traits
- "I knew my brother, Potter. He learned secrecy at our mother's knee. Secrets and lies, that's how we grew up..."
- — The manner in which Kendra raised her children[src]
Little is known about Kendra Dumbledore, but much was said about her in gossip. Muriel deemed her a proud, terrifying woman who cared a great deal for her reputation and pretended not to be Muggle-born, apparently aspiring to higher social status; Muriel also stated that she was ashamed by her "Squib" daughter Ariana and she kept her locked in a cellar. However, Muriel gossiped maliciously about many people, thus her opinion was not necessarily reliable.
Statements made by her son Aberforth Dumbledore suggest that Kendra made keeping the secret of her daughter's condition her priority, and was strict with her children about following her example. She seems to have kept herself isolated from other people. Given her manner of death and Aberforth's claim that he was able to get Ariana to eat and to calm down when Kendra could not, she may have had a difficult relationship with her daughter, as well as her sons.
- "...my father went after the bastards that did it, and attacked them. And they locked him up in Azkaban for it. He never said why he'd done it, because if the Ministry had known what Ariana had become, she'd have been locked up in St Mungo's for good... We had to keep her safe and quiet. We moved house, put it about she was ill, and my mother looked after her, and tried to keep her calm and happy."
- — The Dumbledore family's latter life[src]
Kendra was devastated by her daughter's attack. Percival Dumbledore, her husband, retaliated against the Muggle boys who assaulted Ariana, and was sent to Azkaban. He never told the Ministry of Magic his reasons, knowing that if her condition were discovered, Ariana would be permanently confined to St Mungo's as a threat to the Statute of Secrecy. To maintain this secrecy, Kendra moved her family to Godric's Hollow and looked after Ariana. However, they may not have been very close, as Ariana's brother Aberforth was the only one able to keep her calm. Eventually, Ariana accidentally killed her mother in an explosion of uncontrollable magic.
Kendra's relationship with her two sons, Albus and Aberforth Dumbledore, is largely unknown. She read The Warlock's Hairy Heart from The Tales of Beedle the Bard to Albus at least, implying she at least tried to have a good relationship with them. However, while he was devastated by his mother's death, Aberforth resented her secretive nature and bitterly stated that they learnt lies and secrets from her. When Albus looked into the Mirror of Erised, he saw his family alive and whole, showing that even if Kendra's relationship with Albus was not so good, altough it can be assumed to be better than the one she had with Aberforth and despite being bitter at her mother for dying and leaving him as head of the family, Albus still loved her truly.
- Kendra is a name of disputed origin. It may come from Anglo-Saxon meaning "understanding, knowledge". It may be a variation of the English name Kenda, meaning "water baby", or Dakota, meaning "magical power". Alternatively, it may come from the name Kendrick, which is either derived from Welsh for "greatest champion" or Anglo-Saxon for "family ruler".
Behind the scenes
- Harry Potter Film Wizardry and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (video game) incorrectly states Kendra's death date as 18 November.
- In a The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore prop for the first part of the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Kendra's name is poorly transcribed as "Canard".
- The epitaph on Kendra and Ariana Dumbledore's gravestone, which was made of granite, as recorded in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is Matthew 6:21 from the Christian Bible: "Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." This epitaph, chosen by Dumbledore, is curiously similar to the function of one of Dumbledore's inventions, the Deluminator.
- If Kendra was in fact Native American, she may have studied magic at Ilvermorny.
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (First mentioned)
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (Appears in photograph)
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (video game) (Mentioned) (Name appears on gravestone)
- The Tales of Beedle the Bard (Mentioned only) (Unnamed)
Notes and references
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (see this image)
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 18 (The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore) - It is stated that Albus Dumbledore received an owl informing him of Kendra's death shortly after he left Hogwarts in mid-June 1899.
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 8 (The Wedding) - "“Dumbledore’s mother was a terrifying woman, simply terrifying. Muggle-born, though I heard she pretended otherwise —”"
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 11 (The Bribe) - "The mother, Kendra, had jet-black hair pulled into a high bun."
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 11 (The Bribe) - "Harry thought of photos of Native Americans he’d seen as he studied her dark eyes, high cheekbones, and straight nose, formally composed above a high-necked silk gown."
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 28 (The Missing Mirror) - "“Then, when she was fourteen . . . See, I wasn’t there,” said Aberforth. “If I’d been there, I could have calmed her down. She had one of her rages, and my mother wasn’t as young as she was, and . . . it was an accident. Ariana couldn’t control it. But my mother was killed.”"
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 28 (The Missing Mirror)
- See this image.