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Ronald Weasley splinched on 2 September, 1997

"Splinching, or the separation of random body parts, occurs when the mind is insufficiently determined. You must concentrate continually upon your destination, and move, without haste, but with deliberation…"
— Apparation instructor Wilkie Twycross explains splinching[src]

Splinching was what occurred when a witch or wizard Apparated or Disapparated unsuccessfully, leaving part of his or her clothes or body behind in their former location. The degree of splinching could range from minimal, such as loss of hair, to life-threatening, such as loss of flesh or muscle, though the damage was usually repairable.[1][2]

Splinching was obviously painful and dangerous, therefore some wizards choose other methods of transportation.[3] Harry Potter admitted to both Professor Dumbledore and Ron Weasley that he preferred traveling by broom.[4]

Known cases of splinching

"There was a horrible screech of pain and everybody looked around, terrified, to see Susan Bones of Hufflepuff wobbling in her hoop with her left leg still standing five feet from where she had started. "
— Description of Susan Bones being splinched[src]

In 1994, Arthur Weasley told Harry, Ron and Hermione about two wizards who tried apparation without a licence and splinched themselves, leaving half of themselves behind.[5]

Susan Bones splinched herself during an Apparition lesson

Susan Bones splinched herself during her first Apparition lesson, losing a leg. Her leg ended up separated from the rest of her body, but it was reattached. The Heads of House put her back together with "a great bang and a puff of purple smoke".[1] The incident, however, left her shaken. It was said to be the first "exciting thing happening" during the lesson.[1]

Hermione and Harry help Ron into Perkins' tent after the latter's Splinched

Ron Weasley failed his Apparition test due to leaving half of an eyebrow behind.[6] Having left school in his Seventh year without ever having passed the test, he was badly injured after splinching away part of his upper arm while escaping from the Ministry of Magic and Grimmauld Place in 1997.[7] He was saved through the quick first-aid work of Hermione Granger, who applied Essence of Dittany to the wound in Perkins's tent in the countryside, where they arrived in and resided for refuge.[2] When he briefly abandoned Harry Potter and Hermione, he ended up losing a pair of fingernails.[8]

Apparating across great distances to other countries was illegal, due to fears of "extreme splinching" according to WOMBAT Test 3.

Previously splinched people

  • Two wizards detained by the Ministry[3]

Behind the scenes

  • According to W.O.M.B.A.T., it may be possible to prevent bad luck by turning on the spot three times and deliberately splinching one's thumbs. According to Wilkie Twycross, the splinched body parts are random, meaning it is not possible to deliberately splinch the thumbs.


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 18 (Birthday Surprises)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 14 (The Thief)
  3. 3.0 3.1 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 6 (The Portkey)
  4. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 4 (Horace Slughorn)
  5. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 6 (The Portkey)
  6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 22 (After the Burial)
  7. 7.0 7.1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 13 (The Muggle-Born Registration Commission)
  8. 8.0 8.1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 19 (The Silver Doe)