Licorus Black[2] (18081872[1]) was a pure-blood wizard, as well as the earliest known member of the pure-blood House of Black. He married a pure-blood witch, Magenta Tripe, and is the earliest known ancestor of the Black family, being depicted on the Black family tree tapestry that hangs in the ancestral home of 12 Grimmauld Place[3]. It is possible that he was the brother of Hesper, Alexia Walkin, Phoebe and Eduardus Limette Black.


Licorus was born to the House of Black in 1808, to unknown pure-blood parents. He possibly seems to have had four siblings: Alexia Walkin, Phoebe, Hesper and Eduardus Limette Black.

Mr Black was raised in a household that strongly believed in the importance of blood purity, and as such likely carried a grudge against Muggle-borns, whom most of the family called Mudbloods. His brother Eduardus was disowned for unknown reasons, which likely had an effect on him.

At the age of eleven, Black presumably began his schooling at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he may have been Sorted into Slytherin House.

Sometime after completing his schooling, Black married a pure-blood witch, with whom he seems to have had several children: a daughter, Misapinoa, who married into the Blishwick family by being wed to Jimbo Blishwick, and two sons, Arcturus, and Cygnus Black. It is likely, after Cygnus's death, that Licorus and Magenta helped Ella Max raise Cygnus's children: Sirius, Phineas Nigellus, Iola and Elladora.

Licorus died in 1872.


Licorus is a form of the name Lycorus.

In Greek mythology, Lycorus was a son of the god Apollo.[4] After him a city was named Lycoreia.[5]

Behind the scenes

  • Based on a statement by Horace Slughorn, Licorus may have been a member of Slytherin house. However, Black attended Hogwarts in the 1810s, long before Slughorn was even born.[6]
  • This character appears only on the version of the Black family tree shown in the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. He was not included on the version of the tree which J. K. Rowling gave to a charity auction in 2006[7]. However, according to director David Yates, Rowling provided the filmmakers with a copy of the Black family tree going back eight generations[8]. The filmmakers presumably received a more complete version of the tree than the one auctioned off, which only goes back six generations.
  • Except for the colour of his hat, this character's picture on the family tree bears a striking resemblance to that of Pollux Black. This was likely done by the film-makers to save time, as other characters, such as Elladora and Callidora Black also have images that are remarkably similar[9].
  • His name is similar to the name of his relative, Lycoris Black.
  • He is the first known member of the Black family.


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 See this image.
  2. On the Black family tapestry in the Order of the Phoenix film, only Blacks by birth have portraits, and only their given names are listed on the scrolls beneath these portraits. This indicates that this character was a Black, not the husband of a female Black.
  3. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (film)
  4. Hyginus, Fabulae, 161
  5. Pausanias, Description of Greece, 10. 6. 3
  6. ''Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
  7. "Black Family Tree" on The Harry Potter Lexicon
  8. "'Empire' Magazine Feature on OotP" from The Leaky Cauldron
  9. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (film)
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