We all know that the harry potter deaths were a significant factor, especially the deaths of parents, including Harry’s parents and Voldemort. Loss of parents is an important theme of the book, along with the love of a mother. It is also well-known that JK Rowling has struggled with depression and suicidal ideation.
She is a strong advocate of mental health awareness, and dementors are her magical version of depression. But how much more of her experience with depression is depicted in the novel? However, there are much darker aspects of her thoughts that JK Rowling has shared in Harry Potter books, one of which is suicide. Did you know Rowling sneaked in not 1 or 2 but 7 suicides in the Harry Potter plot? Let’s read about them all.
1. Cadmus Peverell
This is one of the most romantic yet sad deaths in harry potter. The second brother in “the tale of three brothers” asks for death for a resurrection stone. Or, according to Dumbledore’s version of the story, he was an extraordinary wizard who created the stone himself. Nevertheless, he used the stone to attempt to bring his love of life back to life. Unable to fully revive her back to life, finding her sad, cold, and frustrated, he ended his own life so he could be united with her. Here I will like to point out that the Resurrection stone is a “death trap” in a very literal sense.
Only those who want to be united with their deceased loved ones are attracted to it, and it can escalate depression real quick, leading the bearer toward suicide. This is backed up by the scene where Harry Potter revives his deceased elders (or death’s version of them all). They all encourage him towards death (which they would never have in reality), making it seem convenient and desirable.
2. Bloody Baron
He was the first generation of Hogwarts students who fell in love with Helena Ravenclaw, daughter of Rowena Ravenclaw. Helena rejected all the advances of Baron. Later Helena steals her mother’s wreath, which was believed to enhance wisdom, and escapes to Albania. Baron is sent after her by Rowena, who fell ill, to bring her back. After Baron successfully traces her, the two have a heated argument as Helena does not intend to go back. Still, Baron is insistent on taking her along with him.
In a fit of rage, he stabs her, and she dies. He is horrified at his action, and grief and remorse overcome him. He stabs himself with the same weapon he used on Helena Ravenclaw. Two later returned to Hogwarts as ghosts; we knew them as Bloody Baron, the ghost of Slytherin house, and The Grey Lady.
3. Warlock (The Warlock’s Hairy Heart)
You will know about this one only if you are a hardcore Potterhead. Warlock was the protagonist of the story ‘The Warlock’s Hairy Heart’ in the children’s storybook ‘The Tales of Beedle the Bard.’ Warlock was a rich and talented wizard who lived in his castle alone and believed that love is a humiliation and weakness, which can drain a person emotionally and materially. Obsessed with this belief, he employed Dark Arts and physically removed his own heart and kept it in a casket.
Detached from his owner, the heart gained a beastly appearance, and Warlock found comfort in solitude. His servants ridiculed him so no maiden would take him despite his riches. This wounded his ego, and he set upon himself to find himself a maiden. He found a maiden he fancied, but she demanded proof that he had a heart. Thus he takes her to the dungeons, where he keeps his heart locked. The maiden is horrified to see the shriveled and hairy heart and insists that he put his heart back in his chest.
Determined to win the maiden, he places the monstrous heart in his chest, but the heart has grown wicked and compels him to kill the maiden. After the maiden is dead, determined not to let the heart overpower him, he cuts upon the maiden’s chest and attempts to swap his heart with hers. He proceeded to cut his chest and rip his own heart. He died holding a heart in each hand. A crazy story, I know! Not a good choice for a bedtime story for young children, but hey, wizards are a little off if you ask me.
4. Albus Dumbledore
Some might argue that Dumbledore was murdered, but that’s what it only appears to be. In reality, it was a well-planned and rather dramatic suicide (just like everything about him, seriously, Dumbledore and Sirius Black are the biggest contestants for the drama queen title). Knowing fully well that Marvalo Gaunt’s ring was a Horcrux he unwittingly wore it upon discovering it was a Resurrection stone. This cost him dearly, and he was injured badly, had it not for his extraordinary magical powers and Severus Snape’s mastery of the magic he would have died right there.
After destroying the Horcrux, Dumbledore decided to keep the ring on himself and was seen wearing it too. Was it a new style statement? I don’t think so. We have already established that the resurrection stone attracted those who wished to be reunited with the deceased loved one and escalated depression.
Undoubtedly it had the same influence on Dumbledore, who later requested Severus Snape to kill him as his days were already numbered. It would have looked humiliating if he was killed by young Draco Malfoy, who was no match for his skills and wouldn’t have managed to kill him even after disarming him. Escaping the gang of Death eaters or defeating them would have been no problem.
He has done that before. Everyone knows Dumbledore was capable of doing powerful magic even without a wand. He could have easily escaped the situation; instead, he chose to die at the hands of Severus Snape because his days were already numbered, and being killed by Snape would earn him some serious trust points in Voldemort’s ranking system. A self-planned death like this is no different than assisted suicide (mercy killing or, if you prefer, euthanasia) for terminally ill patients. Subsequently, Dumbledore’s death must be considered suicide. I rest my case here.
Ah! We all know this one. Peter, aka Wormtail and Scabbers, sold out his friends in exchange for his safety and switched sides quicker than you can say Quidditch. He was a member of the Order of Pheonix during the first wizarding war. Still, he later became a Death Eater. He ratted out Potters, which led to them getting killed and Sirius Black being sent to Azkaban.
At the same time, he managed to kill 12 innocent muggles just for the sake of creating a scene and framing Sirius Black. Later he spends 12 years as a mouse, a pet owned by the Weasley family. Still, when Sirius Black and Remus Lupin expose him, he pleads to Harry saying his father would never want his best friends to become killers.
Harry intervened on that note and planned to hand him over to the dementors, but instead, taking the chance, Peter escaped. However, this created a life debt, meaning Petter owed his life to Harry, which is strong impenetrable magic. Therefore when Harry and his friends are imprisoned in the cellar of Malfoy’s Manson, and Peter is sent to check on them, he cannot kill him.
When Peter is about to choke Harry, he envokes that life debt. A brief moment of hesitation causes his silver hand (a gift from Voldermort in exchange for his services) to turn on and strangle him to death. It is unclear if the silver hand did so due to life debt or because it was a tool of Voldemort, and Peter betrayed him momentarily by letting Harry go, but I will regard it as suicide.
6. Pandora Lovegood
This is one of the deaths that emphasizes the theme of parental deaths in Harry Potter. Pandora Lovegood was the mother of Luna Lovegood and the wife of a little eccentric but loving Xenophilius Lovegood. Now I know you are saying, hey, we know how she died. Luna told Harry that her mother died when one of her spells backfired! But that’s what Luna told Harry, and there is nothing else to confirm. We do not know much about her, and Jk Rowling never talked much about her. Still, we know that Qubiler was never doing well, and Lovegoods struggled financially.
Considering their circumstances and Xenphilius’ odd outlook towards life, it is also very likely that their marriage was also going through a rough patch. She was likely struggling with depression. Drawing on those assumptions,
I believe that Pandora Lovegood committed suicide or had one of those magical outbursts (similar to emotional outbursts in muggles leading to heart attacks), which led to her death. But what do you tell a 9-year-old who witnessed such a horrific scene? You tell her that her mother was a very intelligent and extraordinary witch, and one of her experiments backfired. Luna believed everything and anything her father told her without questioning it, no matter how bizarre.
7. Regulus Arcturus Black
Yes, the famous R.A.B. younger brother of Sirius Black, is probably one of my favorite death eaters, and that’s why I saved him for the last. Now I will not cut him slack for his choices, excusing that he was influenced by the upbringing of his parents, extended family, and Slytherin peers. Sirius had the very same parents and extended family. Still, he had a mind of his own and therefore was sorted in Gryffindor, which made all the difference. But just like Dumbledore said for Severus Snape, ‘we sort too soon,” this stands true for R.A.B too.
He showed a lot of wit and courage, going against Voldermort and sacrificing his own life to give a better chance to someone else to take the Dark Lord down. When Voldermort asked Regulus to borrow his house elf, Regulus and Kreacher agreed eagerly. However, Voldermort tested the security of the cave that contained his Horcrux, forcing Kercher to drink the potion, causing him to be tortured, and leaving him to die. Luckily, unbeknown to Voldermort, Kreacher escaped due to his house-elf magic and told everything to Regulus Black.
This new knowledge made Regulus rethink his loyalties as he discovered that Dark Lord had created a Horcrux. He asked Kreacher to take him back to the cave and drank all the potion emptying the sink to get the locket. He gave the Horcrux to Kreacher, replaced it with a fake one, and told Kreacher to leave while he embraced death bravely. While this may not count among the top three heroic deaths in Harry Potter, it is the no.1 heroic suicide and deserves some applause.
What do you think about these suicides? Were you aware of them all? Since the Harry Potter series influenced an entire generation, do you think these deaths in Harry Potter might have left a mark somehow? Please let me know in the comment section.