Lord Voldemort

Lord Voldemort was a dark wizard and the prime antagonist of the Harry Potter series. He was born Tom Riddle but changed his name to Lord Voldemort as he gained power.

The Definitive Glossary for Harry Potter

Lord Voldemort, also known as Tom Riddle was the villain in the Harry Potter series. Lord Voldemort was born Tom Riddle on 31 December 1926 in Wool’s Orphanage, London, England. He was born to Tom Riddle Sr. and Merope Gaunt both from the village of Little Hangleton. Tom was eventually recruited into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry where he proved to be an exceptionally talented student, excelling in almost everything. He would later go by the name of Lord Voldemort and strike fear in the hearts of the wizarding community enough for them to not speak his name.

Lord Voldemort was the symbol of evil and the major antagonist of the Harry Potter series. His followers were known as Death Eaters and were also usually accomplished dark wizards and witches. Throughout the Harry Potter book series, Voldemort would try to cause trouble for Harry or his loved ones, mostly in Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and Harry would rise up to the occasion, and fight back with the help of his two best friends – Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger. Others like Albus Dumbledore, the teachers of Hogwarts, and the members of the Order of the Phoenix helped Harry in the quest to vanquish evil.

Lord Voldemort Profile


  • Date and Place of Birth: 31 December 1926, Wool’s Orphanage, London, England, Great Britain
  • Parents: Tom Riddle and Merope Gaunt
  • Nationality: English
  • Status of Blood: Half-Blooded
  • Spouse: None; Bellatrix Lestrange, according to Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Lord Voldemort Portrait Fan Art
Lord Voldemort Portrait Fan Art

Magical Specifics

  • Patronus: None
  • Boggart: His own dead body
  • Wand: 13 and a half inches, Yew, Phoenix Feather core.


  • School: Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
  • House: Slytherin House
  • Teams and Groups Allied with: House of Gaunt, Slytherin House, Borgin and Burkes, Ministry of Magic


  • Aliases: Lord Voldemort, You Know Who, He Who Must Not Be Named, The Dark Lord, Heir of Slytherin
  • Possessions: The Gaunt Ring (also containing the Resurrection Stone), the Slytherin Locket, the Hufflepuff cup, the Lost Diadem of Ravenclaw, and the Elder Wand.

Lord Voldemort – The Timeline

December 31, 1926

Tom Marvolo Riddle is born

Merope Gaunt gives birth to her son, names him Tom Marvolo Riddle and dies soon after she gives him to the Wool’s Orphanage in London. His father Tom Riddle had abandoned his mother and him after she stopped giving him the love potion.

December 31, 1926
September 1, 1938

Tom Riddle starts his first year at Hogwarts

Tom Riddle joins Hogwarts after he was recruited by Albus Dumbledore from the Wool’s Orphanage. He is sorted into Slytherin House.

September 1, 1938
September 1, 1942

Tom Riddle is selected as the Prefect of Slytherin

Tom Riddle begins his fifth year at Hogwarts. He is made the prefect of Slytherin house. he intends to open the Chamber of Secrets soon.

September 1, 1942
June 12, 1943

Myrtle Warren is killed by the Basilisk

Tom opens the Chamber of Secrets unbeknownst to everyone, Myrtle Warren is killed after she sees the Basilisk directly in the washroom. Tom then wrongfully accuses Hagrid and his pet Aragog for the murder. Tom is rewarded for his services and Hagrid is expelled from Hogwarts.

June 12, 1943
September 1, 1944

Tom Riddle is made Head Boy

Tom Riddle begins his seventh year at Hogwarts and he is made the Head Boy. He is already known to be gaining a lot of followers among his peers in inner circles but is still keeping up appearances within the school.

September 1, 1944
October 31, 1981

Lord Voldemort kills James and Lily Potter

After killing James and Lily Potter, Voldemort tries to kill their son Harry, but his curse backfires and causes him to disappear thereby causing much rejoicing and celebration in the wizarding world. Voldemort goes into hiding in Albania, powerless and scared.

October 31, 1981
July 31, 1991

Quirinus Quirrell tries to steal the Philosopher’s Stone

Quirinus Quirrell is instructed by Lord Voldemort to steal the Philosopher’s Stone from Gringotts Bank. He is unsuccessful in doing so as the stone had already been cleared from the vault by Hagrid under Dumbledore’s instructions.

July 31, 1991
September 8, 1992

The Chamber of Secrets is opened by Ginny

Ginny Weasley is manipulated by Tom Riddle’s diary to open the Chamber of Secrets and let loose the Basilisk in the school. It ends up petrifying Mrs Norris, Mr Filch’s pet cat.

September 8, 1992
February 14, 1993

Harry starts talking to Tom Riddle through his diary

Harry accidentally spills ink on the diary and it begins writing down messages. Harry is shown through flashbacks, the exact moments of when the Chamber of Secrets was opened 50 years ago. Tom Riddle fools Harry into believing Hagrid opened the Chamber of Secrets.

February 14, 1993
May 29, 1993

Harry Potter kills the Basilisk

Harry Potter enters the Chamber of Secrets with the help of Ron Weasley and then battles the Basilisk and eventually kills it with the Sword of Gryffindor. He then destroys the diary of Tom Riddle thereby killing his spirit form.

May 29, 1993
August 23, 1994

Voldemort is brought to the Riddle home

Voldemort is brought to the Riddle home from the forest in Albania by Peter Pettigrew. He is kept alive with the venom of Nagini. Barty Crouch Jr visits Voldemort to take instructions for their future plans. Frank Bryce, the cook who stayed in the room nearby overhears them and is killed.

August 23, 1994
June 24, 1995

Lord Voldemort returns

Lord Voldemort returns after a long hiatus by instructing Peter Pettigrew to perform a ritual that uses Peter’s hand, Harry’s blood and his father’s bones. Cedric Diggory gets killed. Harry and Voldemort duel, but in the end, Harry manages to escape through the Triwizard Cup Portkey.

June 24, 1995
June 13, 1996

Ten Death Eaters including Bellatrix Lestrange escape from Azkaban

Lord Voldemort helps Bellatrix Lestrange, Rodolphus Lestrange and several other Death Eaters escape Azkaban prison. Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic claims that Sirius Black was responsible for orchestrating this breakout.

June 13, 1996
June 20, 1996

Voldemort publicly appears for the first time after his disappearance

Lord Voldemort appears in the Atrium of the Ministry of Magic building after Bellatrix Lestrange and the other Death Eaters fight in the Battle of the Department of Mysteries. Sirius Black is killed by Bellatrix, and Dumbledore and Voldemort duel in the Atrium until the Minister of Magic and some Aurors arrive.

June 20, 1996
June 30, 1997

Harry and Dumbledore go to the cave to find Voldemort’s Horcrux

After seeing Horace Slughorn’s memory and verifying that Voldemort was indeed making Horcruxes, Harry and Dumbledore go to the cave where Voldemort hid the locket of Slytherin that was made into a Horcrux. Immediately after, when they arrive at Hogwarts, the Dark Mark is seen above Hogwarts and several Death Eaters seem to have gained entry into Hogwarts.

June 30, 1997
July 27, 1997

Battle of the Seven Potters

The Battle of the Seven Potters takes place when the Order of the Phoenix is safely trying to transport Harry Potter from Privet Drive to the Burrow. Voldemort eventually appears mid-air and kills Mad-Eye Moody. George loses his ear from a spell cast by Snape.

July 27, 1997
May 2, 1998

Battle of Hogwarts

The Battle of Hogwarts is fought. Several lives are lost and after all the Horcruxes are destroyed, Harry finally kills Lord Voldemort.

May 2, 1998

Who Is Lord Voldemort?

Lord Voldemort was one of the most skilled and dangerous dark wizards of all time. He was probably the most powerful wizard of his time, with the possible exception of Albus Dumbledore. He was born as Tom Riddle to a muggle father and a mother who was a witch. His father abandoned his pregnant mother when he realized that she had duped him into falling in love with her with the help of a love potion. Tom grew up to hate muggles and muggle-born students, and as soon as he learned of his true heritage and that he was Salazar Slytherin’s descendant, he started digging deeper, and his hatred for muggles found a new motivator. He continued to preach the ways of pureblooded supremacy in the wizarding world and gathered a lot of followers who came to be known as Death Eaters. He continued his opposition to muggle-borns being given an opportunity in the wizarding world and started committing murders and other atrocities to get his way. 

The First Wizarding War was afoot, and somewhere in between, he got word about a possible child that would go on to defeat him. He then tried to kill the child and eventually killed its parents, James and Lily Potter. When he tried to kill the child, the curse backfired and caused him to be ripped off his body. He vanished, and Harry Potter became the cause of major celebrations in the wizarding world.

Once Harry started going to school at Hogwarts, Voldemort reemerged and tried to come back to life, but Harry constantly thwarted his plans. Even after Voldemort returned, he had a very difficult time trying to kill Harry.

Early Life

Tom Marvolo Riddle was born on the last day of the year 1926 at Wool’s Orphanage, London. He later finds out that his mother, Merope Gaunt, died giving birth to him. His mother named him Tom after his father and Marvolo after her father. ‘Riddle’ remained his surname as his father had the same surname. Tom grew up in the orphanage and was always thought to be strange and different from the other kids there. When he was a kid, he had a disagreement with another kid named Billy Stubbs, and after a few days, Billy Stubbs’ rabbit was found hanging from the rafters. Billy also took two other children, Dennis Bishop and Amy Benson, to a nearby cave and did something magical and so horrific that they stopped talking after that incident altogether. Interestingly, Voldemort would go back to the same cave and hide one of his Horcruxes there which Dumbledore and Harry go to retrieve in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood PrinceFurthermore, he also used to steal a lot of items from other kids and hide them in his cupboard.

Eventually, when he turned eleven, Albus Dumbledore came to the Muggle orphanage as a representative of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He talked to Mrs Cole, the head of the Orphanage, and later to Tom, and although Tom was a bit reserved at first, he started showing interest when Dumbledore showed him some actual magic. Tom told Dumbledore that he could make bad things happen to those who hurt him and also claimed to have the ability to talk to snakes. While Dumbledore was a little skeptical about Tom’s attitude, he later claimed to Harry that never would he have thought that this young boy would go on to become one of the most feared dark wizards of all time.

Tom was eventually admitted into Hogwarts and would soon become popular for his magical merit and intelligence.

Hogwarts Years

Tom Riddle studied at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from 1938 to 1945. He was sorted into Slytherin House and was considered a very bright student. He was a favorite student among most of his teachers. However, Albus Dumbledore always seemed to have a watchful eye on him, as Tom Riddle himself claimed. Professor Armando Dippet, the Headmaster of Hogwarts at that time, also really admired Tom. When Tom was in his fifth year, a lot of strange things began to happen in the school. A girl, Myrtle Warren, who was a Muggle-born, died under strange circumstances within the school.

It was suspected that a monster of some sort must have killed her. Tom Riddle confronted Rubeus Hagrid, who was hiding a magical beast in a classroom. The beast happened to be a giant spider known as the Acromantula. It escaped from the castle after Tom caught Hagrid, and he was punished by being dismissed from Hogwarts. However, Dumbledore decided to employ Hagrid as a gamekeeper at Hogwarts. Tom Riddle was awarded a distinguished medal for his services in saving Hogwarts. 

However, it would later be revealed that Tom Riddle was the reason that Myrtle Warren died. Tom had learned of his heritage and that Salazar Slytherin was his ancestor who swore to rid the school of all Muggle-born students. He prophesized that his heir would return someday and finish his work. It was Tom Riddle who was the prophesized Heir of Slytherin. So, Tom Riddle discovered the Chamber of Secrets that lay underneath the castle after he found its entrance at the girl’s bathroom on the third floor. He used his ability to speak to snakes to awaken the Basilisk that had been resting inside the chamber for over a thousand years. The Basilisk is what killed Myrtle and Tom used Hagrid and Aragog as a cover-up for his original intentions.

Interestingly, Draco Malfoy claimed confidently that the heir of Slytherin is coming for all Mudbloods, a derogatory term used by pure-blood supremacists for Muggle-born witches and wizards like he knew about the Chamber of Secrets, but it was later found out that it was only because he was told by his father about the opening of the chamber fifty years ago.

Tom was elected head boy in his sixth year. He was very cunning and extremely intelligent. He would use his skills to get his way, as illustrated by the memory of Horace Slughorn that Harry and Dumbledore see in the Pensieve. Tom Riddle was adamant about researching Horcruxes and therefore used his influence with Professor Slughorn to speak him through it. He even got Slughorn’s favorite sweets, a box of Crystallized Pineapples which he must have figured out using Legilimency. After Slughorn was assured by Tom that his question about Horcruxes was purely for academic purposes, Slughorn told him about it. He claimed that Horcruxes were made with dark magic by trapping parts of one’s soul within some object by committing heinous acts. Tom hypothesized the possibility of making seven, to which Slughorn responded with fear and surprise. Tom convinced Slughorn that he was just curious, and Slughorn admitted that making seven Horcruxes was possible theoretically.

The Origins of Lord Voldemort

After Tom Riddle graduated from Hogwarts, he went to Professor Dippet asking for a job as Professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts. Dippet rejected the offer claiming that Riddle was too young. He was offered several posts in the Ministry of Magic as well, given his reputation as one of the brightest students. However, he chose to stay away from all these opportunities and most of his peers and teachers were surprised when they found out that Tom had started working in Borgin and Burkes, a novelty and antique shop situated in Knockturn Alley. However, Tom had a very important reason to be at Borgin and Burkes. 

Since he was already in the process of secretly making Horcruxes, he was hunting down important artifacts that befit his dignity to be converted into a Horcrux. The Slytherin locket was one such relic that his mother had long ago sold to Mr Borgin for a very small price. Furthermore, he researched Helga Hufflepuff’s cup and decided to find out where it was. One of the clients of Borgin and Burkes, Hepzibah Smith, seemed to have it, and eventually, Tom Riddle went to her house and, using his charm, convinced the witch to show him the cup. After he saw it, he was also shown Salazar Slytherin’s locket, which Hepzibah Smith had bought from Mr Borgin long ago. Tom then killed Hepzibah Smith, framed the House-Elf Hokey for the murder, and vanished with the two relics. He converted them to Horcruxes. He kept the locket of Slytherin in the cave that he had taken the kids from his orphanage to, and he eventually gave the cup to Bellatrix Lestrange, who would store it in her vault.

His name Lord Voldemort was pronounced Vol-duh-mort where the ‘t’ is almost silent. His name Lord Voldemort is a part of an anagram of his old name, “Tom Marvolo Riddle.” The whole anagram is “I am Lord Voldemort” as is shown in the movie adaptation of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

The Rise Of Lord Voldemort

After he was denied the post of the Defense Against the Dark Arts Professor by Albus Dumbledore, he is said to have gone underground. It was rumored that he started collecting a lot of followers and supporters who were called Death Eaters. He also started traveling extensively and meeting with other Dark Wizards and learning from them. For around ten years, he is said to have continued his incognito until he resurfaced again when he went to meet Albus Dumbledore.

He went to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, seeking a job as the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher for the second time. It is believed that he met Dumbledore at his office and asked for the job. Sensing that something was fishy, Dumbledore humbly refused to give him the job. It is believed that Tom jinxed this job, and ever since, till the Battle of Hogwarts eventually caused the death of Voldemort, that post was cursed and could not keep the teacher for Defence Against the Dark Arts for more than a year. On his way back, Voldemort also hid another one of his Horcruxes, the Lost Diadem of Ravenclaw, in the Room of Requirement.

What Did Lord Voldemort Look Like?

Lord Voldemort looked nothing like his previous self. In his teenage years, Tom Riddle was considered a very handsome young man with a promising future. However, after making several Horcruxes and ripping his soul apart several times, he looked very strange and nothing like a normal human being would. He had a very snake-like appearance. He had very pale skin, almost as if he were a corpse. He had red eyes, his nostrils were just slits, and there was no nose. He wore a tattered black robe that magically covered most of his body. He was capable of flying in the air, and as is shown in the movies, his robe would dissolve slightly into the background when he flew into the air.

First Wizarding War

The First Wizarding War was marked to have begun when Lord Voldemort started recruiting several members of the magical community who had long been ostracized by the wizarding community. Voldemort met with giants in the mountains and in other parts of the world and asked them to join his cause. He also recruited the werewolves, who were outcasts from wizarding communities because of how often they would bite and infect wizards and witches, including children. Voldemort, being a Dark Wizard, was also capable of creating an army of Inferi at his disposal. He used many of them to guard one of his Horcruxes in the cave he hid it in.

Voldemort did not parlay with the goblins, although it was considered a possibility by many. Instead, he murdered a goblin family and possibly closed all gates of striking a partnership with goblins. He then started commanding his Death Eaters to kill and kidnap several important people who posed a threat to his cause. This is when the Ministry started paying special attention to the problem. Barty Crouch Sr, who was the head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement at that time, took a very brave and ruthless approach. He commanded his Aurors to use the Unforgivable Curses on Death Eaters without showing any mercy. This was justified because the Death Eaters used these curses almost at every turn, and several fatalities were recorded around that time.

Around the same time, Voldemort started strengthening the defenses of his Horcruxes. He gave the diary that he made his first Horcrux to Lucius Malfoy, one of his most trusted Death Eaters. He gave the Hufflepuff cup to Bellatrix Lestrange, another one of his trusted and important Death Eaters. He went back to the Gaunt Shack and strategically placed the Gaunt Ring in a box under the floorboards, making it difficult to be found. Finally, he hid the locket of Slytherin in the cave where he had once terrorized the kids of his orphanage at. 

Furthermore, he asked Regulus Arcturus Black, a Death Eater at that time and the brother of Sirius Black, to lend his house-elf Kreacher to him. He then used Kreacher to test the defenses he had placed around the Slytherin locket in the cave. This included an army of Inferi in the still lake inside the cave and drinking a very dangerous potion that made its drinker feel the worst possible emotions and memories. He then left Kreacher in the cave. However, Regulus found out about this and took Kreacher back to safety. Eventually, he came back to the cave with Kreacher, went through those defenses himself, drank the potion and stole the Horcrux from its place, and placed a fake locket there. He also kept a note inside that locket revealing that he had stolen the original one. Harry and Dumbledore would go to this cave several years later and retrieve this locket, thinking it was a Horcrux, and Harry would find this note in the fake locket.

The Prophecy that Started it All

Perhaps one of the most crucial and significant moments in the Harry Potter series is when Sybill Trelawney appears at the Hog’s Head Inn around July 1981 to meet Albus Dumbledore. Dumbledore happens to be recruiting her for the post of Divination professor at Hogwarts. When asked to make a prophecy for him, she suddenly makes a prophecy about a child who would have the power to vanquish the Dark Lord. This prophecy was partially overheard by a Death Eater who eavesdropped on their conversation, and he made a dash for it and eventually told Voldemort about this prophecy. This Death Eater is eventually revealed to be Severus Snape.

However, this prophecy was taken very seriously by Voldemort. When he started taking the contents of the prophecy into question to identify the child who was known to possess the power to defeat him, two names stood out. Since Sybill Trelawney claimed that the child was born on the seventh month of the previous year, making the child one year old. One was the child of James and Lily Potter, Harry Potter, and the other was the child of Frank and Alice Longbottom, Neville Longbottom. The prophecy clearly maintained that the Dark Lord would choose the child as his equal, which implied that his choice gave the child these powers. However, Snape didn’t inform this in the detail that was needed, and therefore, Voldemort decided to kill Harry Potter.

Killing Harry Potter’s Parents

Voldemort started gathering information about James and Lily Potter and their whereabouts. As soon as Albus Dumbledore was alerted of this, he advised Lily and James Potter to go into hiding with their one-year-old son Harry Potter. He also suggested that they perform the Fidelius Charm on the house they stayed in at Godric’s Hollow, thereby making it impossible for them to be found by anyone. The Fidelius Charm required a secret keeper who would know where the house was. Everyone in the Order of the Phoenix was told that Sirius Black was their secret keeper since those were testing times in terms of trusting people. 

However, to prevent any possible mole in the Order of the Phoenix from telling Voldemort where their house was, they decided to eventually make Peter Pettigrew their secret keeper, adding an additional layer of defense. However, it was proved to be futile as Peter Pettigrew was the mole who went on to leak information to Voldemort, and on the night of Hallowe’en, 31 October 1981, Voldemort went to Godric’s Hollow and located the house. He first killed James Potter as he was trying to protect Lily and Harry by fighting Voldemort. Then, he entered the room where Lily hid Harry and told her to move aside. When she refused, he killed her too. 

Eventually, he tried to kill Harry too, but strangely, the curse backfired and instead, hit Voldemort. However, Voldemort didn’t die that day, and one-year-old Harry was left with a scar in the shape of lightning. It was later revealed that Voldemort survived because he had created seven Horcruxes for himself by trapping his soul, making it impossible for him to die without all seven of them being destroyed. The reason Harry lived through this encounter is that his mother Lily sacrificed herself for him, and he was protected by ancient magic that valued love. 

Gaunt Family

The Gaunt family were the descendants of Salazar Slytherin. The family lived in a shack near the house of Tom Riddle in Little Hangleton. Marvolo Gaunt lived with his two children, Morfin and Merope, in the shack. They were said to have a strange appearance, possibly due to generations of inbreeding, and their eyes were pointed more peripherally than most humans, indicating their similarity with snakes. When Bob Ogden, a Ministry official, went to their shack, he saw that there was a dead snake attached to their doorway, and Morfin spoke only in Parseltongue. Marvolo was a very mean old man who was very proud of his rich heritage and was also very proud of owning the ring that contained the Resurrection Stone within it. Both this ring and a locket that Merope Gaunt sold in Borgin and Burkes would become Horcruxes of Lord Voldemort eventually.

Merope Gaunt fell in love with Tom Riddle when she saw him around their house a few times. She then used a love potion to make him fall in love with her. However, when the effects of the potion wore off, Tom Riddle was furious and wanted nothing to do with her and the baby that had been growing in her womb. He abandoned them and returned to his house. Merope escaped from her house and came to London. She then sold the Slytherin locket that was worth a fortune to Borgin. However, she was unaware of its value and got very little compensation for it. In the end, she reached the doorsteps of Wool’s Orphanage and gave birth to the child. She eventually died there. Tom Riddle Jr was brought up in that orphanage until Dumbledore recruited him to stay at Hogwarts to study magic.

Tom Riddle Jr eventually went back to the Gaunt Shack and met his uncle Morfin Gaunt. When Morfin saw Tom, he exclaimed that he looked a lot like the muggle man living in the house nearby. Tom was able to put it all together and figured out that Morfin was talking about his father. He then stunned Morfin, took his wand, and went on to kill his father, Tom Riddle Sr, and his parents. He then altered Morfin’s memories and made him believe that he was the murderer. Morfin would be sentenced to life imprisonment in Azkaban. In the muggle world, Frank Bryce, a cook who stayed in the nearby quarters, was accused of the three murders. Tom also stole the ring of Cadmus Peverell that belonged to his maternal grandfather Marvolo Gaunt.

Re-emergence of Lord Voldemort

Voldemort was said to be hiding in Albania after he lost his powers and a material body. His attack on Harry Potter at Godric’s Hollow had rendered him powerless. After some attempts to gain his powers, first through Professor Quirrel and then through the diary, he eventually came back to life with the help of Barty Crouch Jr and Peter Pettigrew. Barty Crouch Jr disguised himself as Alastor Moody throughout the school year and deliberately put Harry’s name in the Goblet of Fire, forcing him to compete. At the end of the Triwizard Tournament, Harry and Cedric Diggory both got transported to an old graveyard as Barty Crouch Jr had converted the Triwizard Cup into a Portkey. 

The graveyard is eventually revealed to be that of Tom Riddle Sr, Voldemort’s father. Peter Pettigrew killed Cedric Diggory on Voldemort’s advice and hoisted Harry atop the tombstone of Tom Riddle Sr. He then performed an elaborate ceremony and eventually brought back Lord Voldemort in the flesh. Voldemort summoned his Death Eaters to the cemetery and then dueled with Harry. Harry’s wand performed magic known as Priori Incantatem, which, instead of hurting him, protected him from Voldemort’s spells, and eventually, he escaped with the help of his parents, Cedric, and the other people that Voldemort’s wand had killed, who came back temporarily in a magical form to save Harry.

Once Harry came back, he warned everybody in the magical community that Voldemort had returned. While some of them, including Dumbledore and his close friends, believed him completely, some others, like the Ministry of Magic, seemed to ignore his claims completely. It would take an entire year for them to admit that Lord Voldemort had, in fact, actually returned.

It is believed that the graveyard in this scene is inspired by a real graveyard called the Greyfriars Kirkyard in Edinburgh, Scotland, which has a tombstone for one, Thomas Riddel.

Battle At The Ministry Of Magic

The Battle at the Ministry of Magic, also known as the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, took place on 18 June 1996 in the Ministry of Magic building. It started after Harry and his friends Ron, Hermione, Ginny, Neville, and Luna went to the Department of Mysteries, suspecting that Sirius Black was in grave danger at the hands of Voldemort. The source of this doubt was Harry’s visions which were connected to Voldemort’s mind. Harry had saved Arthur Weasley from getting killed by Nagini before, which is why he probably assumed that this vision was a real-life incident too. When they reached the Department of Mysteries, they were surrounded by Death Eaters, and it turned out that this was an ambush orchestrated by Voldemort to lure Harry into the Ministry of Magic building. Harry and his friends fought the Death Eaters bravely and were eventually joined by the Order of the Phoenix, including Sirius, who seemed to be doing fine. However, during the Battle, Sirius was killed by Bellatrix Lestrange, and as she ran away, trying to flee the scene, Harry followed her in hot pursuit. 

This is when Voldemort made his appearance at the Atrium of the Ministry of Magic building. But before he could attack Harry, Dumbledore too reached there. What followed was an epic battle between Dumbledore and Voldemort. Voldemort conjured a lot of Dark Magic out of his wand, but Dumbledore continued to protect Harry, and eventually, some Aurors and the Minister of Magic, Cornelius Fudge, appeared in the Atrium and saw Voldemort in the flesh. This is when his appearance became public after a year of the Ministry denying Harry’s claims that Voldemort was back.            

Battle Of Hogwarts

The Battle of Hogwarts is probably one of the most gruesome battles fought in the wizarding world. It was fought between Lord Voldemort and Harry Potter. However, the implications of the battle were not restricted to these two. In summation, the battle was fought between the Pure-blood supremacists and everybody else who stood up against them. It started when Harry, Hermione, and Ron were spotted in Hogsmeade and then went to Hogwarts. Once Snape escaped from Hogwarts, Voldemort decided to send his troops to capture the people who were in the Hogwarts castle. He sent several of his Death Eaters and large ranks of his followers, including dementors, giants, werewolves, and many others.

The students, teachers, and members of the Order of the Phoenix defended the castle against these intruders. Professor McGonagall, along with the others, decided to use protective charms to wade them off for a while to buy Harry some time to find the Horcrux he was looking for. However, eventually, the fight ensued. As the fight went on, Harry was able to locate the Lost Diadem of Ravenclaw and destroy it. Ron and Hermione also destroyed another Horcrux, the Hufflepuff cup. 

The battle took away many lives. Remus Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks both died in the battle. Harry was named godfather a while ago to their only son Ted Lupin. Fred Weasley was also killed in the battle. As Harry, Ron, and Hermione realized that Voldemort was in the Shrieking Shack, they went there and witnessed Voldemort murdering Severus Snape due to his conviction that Snape was the master of the Elder Wand as he had killed Dumbledore. After Voldemort left, they went to Snape, who was dying, and he gave them his memories which Harry took to the Pensieve. In the Pensieve, Harry saw that the plan all along was for him to die at the hands of Voldemort, as he himself was a Horcrux Voldemort accidentally made when he tried to kill Harry.

Harry then went to the Forbidden Forest, where Voldemort shot the killing curse at him. However, Harry still didn’t die. Instead, the part of Voldemort’s soul that was trapped in Harry’s body did. Unbeknownst to everyone except Narcissa Malfoy, who lied to Voldemort about Harry being dead, Hagrid was made to carry Harry’s “apparent” corpse and paraded all the way to Hogwarts. Voldemort asked the remaining witches and wizards to join ranks with him and support his cause. Suddenly, Harry jumped out of Hagrid’s hands, and another part of the battle ensued. Neville destroyed the final Horcrux, the snake Nagini. Harry and Voldemort faced off, but strangely, none of the spells that Voldemort cast seemed to work because the magic that saved Harry all these years seemed to save everyone else as well. Eventually, Voldemort lost and was finally killed by Harry, thereby putting an end to the Battle of Hogwarts.


Lord Voldemort was keen on making Horcruxes as he had been fascinated with the possibility of being immortal since an early age. He had asked Professor Horace Slughorn about it and was told that Horcruxes are made with Dark magic by committing heinous acts. He also claimed that a Horcrux would rip one’s soul into two parts, and even if the person were killed, a part of his soul would live in the Horcrux and could be resurrected with some more Dark Magic. Voldemort intended to make seven Horcruxes and eventually succeeded. The first Horcrux he made was a diary he had when he was sixteen years old. This diary was eventually destroyed by Harry Potter fifty years later in the Chamber of Secrets with the help of Basilisk’s fangs. The second Horcrux he made was most likely the Gaunt Ring which he obtained from his uncle Morfin Gaunt when he visited him. It was destroyed by Albus Dumbledore after he found it abandoned in the Gaunt Shack. However, since the ring was cursed, and Dumbledore touched it directly, it began to infect his hand and would eventually kill him.

The third and the fourth Horcrux were probably made together as they were both collected by Tom Riddle from Hepzibah Smith. They were Slytherin’s locket Horcrux and the Hufflepuff cup Horcrux. The locket was destroyed by Ron using the Sword of Gryffindor, and the Hufflepuff cup was destroyed by Hermione in the Chamber of Secrets during the Battle of Hogwarts. The fifth Horcrux was the Lost Diadem of Ravenclaw, which Tom Riddle found out about from Helena Ravenclaw, who was a ghost in Hogwarts. She was the daughter of Rowena Ravenclaw. Voldemort found it in a forest in Albania and converted it into a Horcrux. He then placed it in the Room of Requirement at Hogwarts when he came to ask for a job as the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. The last Horcrux he made was an unintentional one in that he had no idea that he made it. It was created when after he killed James and Lily Potter, he tried to kill Harry. The killing curse backfired on him, and whatever part of his soul was left latched onto Harry. That was the reason that Harry had several skills that Voldemort did, like speaking Parselmouth. 

The last Horcrux that Voldemort made is believed to be Nagini, the snake. She was killed by Neville during the Battle of Hogwarts. 


Voldemort had a very strong connection with snakes. This is because of his ancestral ties with the famed Salazar Slytherin, who had a proclivity for talking to snakes. Wizards and witches with this ability were known as Parselmouths. The language of the snakes was known as Parseltongue. The Gaunts, who were descendants of Salazar Slytherin, also were Parselmouths. They even spoke to each other in Parseltongue. To an onlooker, it sounded like hissing noises. When Harry became a Horcrux immediately after he was attacked with the Killing Curse by Voldemort, he too developed the ability to speak Parseltongue. 

Voldemort’s connection with snakes continued to exist till the day he died. When Dumbledore came to recruit Tom Riddle to Hogwarts, Tom claimed that he had the ability to talk to snakes. Tom used his ability to speak Parseltongue to open the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets and command the Basilisk to hunt down Muggle-born students and kill them. Even after he was rendered powerless and went into exile after his Killing Curse intended for Harry Potter backfired at him, it is believed that he hid in forests and possessed animals as he had no discernible body of his own. Most of the animals he possessed in his time in the forests of Albania happened to be snakes. After he came back from this state, he continued to keep his pet snake Nagini with him almost at all times. It was also because he had converted that snake into a Horcrux.

Voldemort In The Movies

Lord Voldemort was played mostly by Ralph Fiennes, the famous British actor known for his role as Amon Goeth in Schindler’s List (1993) and László von Almásy in The English Patient (1996). The face of Voldemort that protruded out of Professor Quirrell’s head was played by the English actor Richard Bremmer in the first film, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s StoneIan Hart played the role of Professor Quirrel. The role of young Tom Riddle was played by Christian Coulson in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. The role of eleven-year-old Tom Riddle in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was played by Ralph Fiennes’ nephew Hero Fiennes Tiffin. The sixteen-year-old Tom Riddle in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was played by Frank Dillane.

Ralph was born Ralph Nathaniel Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes on 22 December 1962 in Ipswich, England. He was trained in acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. He went on to bag several important roles in movies, including Schindler’s List (1993), for which he was nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category. Fiennes is the eldest among six siblings. One of Fiennes’ nephews, Hero Fiennes Tiffin, is also an actor and plays the role of young Voldemort in the movie Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Ralph Fiennes played Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Parts 1 and 2).

Lord Voldemort – Portraying Evil through Seven Books

The task of portraying a character that is the epitome of evil is no easy task. That too, doing it in a children’s book is even harder as impressionable children are bound to learn a lot from how evil is portrayed in a book they read. However, Rowling does a great job of masking the subtleties of the nature of evil in earlier books and then eases into it in the later books. In Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, very little is discussed about Lord Voldemort’s past, and he is portrayed as every bit an evil Dark Wizard who killed Harry Potter’s parents. He is also seen as one that would go to great lengths to come back to life, like killing a unicorn for its blood and trying to steal the Philosopher’s Stone. However, in later books, more is shown of Tom Riddle, his human self that once was probably just human. His mother was abandoned when pregnant by his father, and he was left in an orphanage as she died soon after giving birth to him. His early childhood, devoid of love, shaped who he would become. This in-depth understanding of Voldemort’s psyche adds more layers to an otherwise two-dimensional representation of evil. But doing it tactfully by easing into it in later books makes it more fruitful for a slightly grown-up audience to understand the depths of the human condition.


How did Voldemort lose his nose?

While it is not explicitly stated in the books, it is believed that Voldemort must have lost his nose after he started using Nagini’s venom to keep himself alive. Nagini was a woman but a Maledictus with a blood curse that made her eventually become a snake forever. It is possible that her venom too was affected by this curse and therefore when Voldemort used this venom extensively, it transformed him into his strange appearance with snakelike traits including the lack of a nose, red eyes and pale skin. It may also have something to do with him ripping his soul apart several times to make Horcruxes and that the last Horcrux he made happened to be Nagini herself.

How did Tom Riddle become Voldemort?

Tom Riddle was always in need of updating himself ever since he found out that his father was a Muggle and that he abandoned his mother. It is also believed that Tom was addressed as Lord Voldemort even during his school years in his inner circle. However, the defining moment where the actual transformation occurred is believed to be after Tom killed the widow Hepzibah Smith and then went underground for several years. This was the period he spent a lot of time dabbling in the Dark Arts and it is believed that he had significantly changed in appearance and attitude when he was next seen.

Who called Voldemort by name?

It was a known fact that almost everybody in the wizarding world feared Lord Voldemort and never called him out or spoke of him by name. Most people just called him He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named or You-Know-Who. His Death Eaters referred to him as the Dark Lord. However, there were some people who called him by his name. Albus Dumbledore had always called him Tom Riddle and continued to do so. When he spoke of him, he referred to him as Voldemort. Harry too called Voldemort Tom and when he spoke of him, he called him Voldemort. In the movie adaptations, Hermione eventually began calling him Voldemort and so did Professor McGonagall and a lot of other people.

Are Lord Voldemort and Harry Potter related?

Yes, Lord Voldemort and Harry Potter are related. They are very distant cousins. The second and third Peverell brothers, Cadmus and Ignotus Peverell are the ancestors of Lord Voldemort and Harry respectively. Cadmus Peverell’s Resurrection Stone was passed on to generations through Salazar Slytherin and ultimately ended up in the hands of the Gaunts which eventually got into the hands of Voldemort. Similarly, Harry got his Invisibility Cloak as an inheritance from his father which came through generations all the way from Ignotus Peverell.

What is Lord Voldemort’s Patronus?

Lord Voldemort has no Patronus. It is believed that since Lord Voldemort had already ripped his soul apart several times, there was no way the Dementors could sense anything remotely resembling a soul in him. Furthermore, it may also be the case that he has never really had a happy memory, at least not the type that is essential to conjure a Patronus. It is not known if Tom Riddle had a Patronus either but it is possible that there was never a need to find out as conjuring Patronuses were not as common in the school curriculum.

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