The reason Harry wasn't killed by Voldemort in the Forbidden Forest was that Voldemort took Lily's sacrificial protection and anchored it to himself by taking Harry's blood in GoF.

"I think you know," said Dumbledore. "Think back. Remember what he did, in his ignorance, in his greed and his cruelty."
Harry thought. ... Then the answer rose to his lips easily, without effort. "He took my blood," said Harry.
"Precisely!" said Dumbledore. "He took your blood and rebuilt his living body with it! Your blood in his veins, Harry, Lily's protection inside both of you! He tethered you to life while he lives!" ("DH", "King's Cross")

Would this still be in effect AFTER Voldemort failed to kill Harry the first time?

In other words, if the Elder Wand didn't refuse to kill its owner (Harry) in the final duel in Hogwarts, would Harry STILL have not died because he was still under Lily's protection and Voldemort with Harry's blood in his veins was still alive?

  • It only protected him from Voldemort, so it doesn't really matter whether it was technically there or not.
    – Kevin
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 22:20
  • Nah, Voldemort essentially killed the only part of him left in Harry at the Forbidden Forest. After that, Harry was free to live or die without Voldemort's help. Conversely though, Voldemort tied Harry to himself at the cemetery - sort of Horcruxified himself for Harry - and in essence making Harry immortal.
    – Möoz
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 22:35
  • @Mooz I think based on your evidence that you mean "yes." Agree?
    – CCHP
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 22:40
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    @kevin I meant in a period of time between sacrifice in forbidden forest and final duel with V. Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 23:31

3 Answers 3


I believe the answer is yes. If we think back to Lily's original sacrificial protection, we know for a fact that it worked more than once.

  1. Lord Voldemort unable to kill baby Harry on Halloween 1981.
  2. Quirrell/Voldemort unable to touch 1st-year Harry in June 1992.

Seeing as how the protection worked twice, we can conclude that Voldemort's blood anchoring of Harry would likewise not expire after one time employment.

A supplemental piece of evidence? In the final showdown, Harry says:

"You won’t be able to kill any of them ever again. Don’t you get it? I was ready to die to stop you from hurting these people—" (Deathly Hallows, The Flaw in the Plan).

  • This confirms once again that sacrificial protection (not to be confused with the familial blood extension charm that DD casts w/ Petunia) does not come with an expiration date.

No, not in Harry's opinion.

Harry says this:

“If it is not love that will save you this time,” said Voldemort, “you must believe that you have magic that i do not, or else a weapon more powerful than mine?”
“I believe both,” said Harry

Which to me reads like he is fighting for love not using it in a magical way. Obviously the weapon would be in reference to his true ownership of the elder wand stated below:

“So it all comes down to this, doesn’t it?” whispered Harry. “Does the wand in your hand know its last master was Disarmed? Because if it does . . . I am the true master of the Elder Wand.”

This is right before his final bout and Harry seems to think that this should make him succeed.

I'm fairly certain that Lily's magic faded once Voldemort took Harry's blood and was then replaced by the Harry to Voldemort blood tether. Effectively linking Harry to the world in the same way that a Horcrux does. So from after the forbidden forest Voldemort should be able to kill Harry.

It seems prudent to note that by allowing himself to be killed Harry instantiated a new instance of sacrificial magic, thereby protecting his Friends from Voldemort.

“You won't be killing anyone else tonight,” said Harry as they circled, and stared into each other's eyes, green into red. “You won't be able to kill any of them ever again. Don't you get it? I was ready to die to stop you from hurting these people - ”
 “But you did not!”
 “ - I meant to, and that's what did it. I've done what my mother did. They're protected from you. Haven't you noticed how none of the spells you put on them are binding? You can't torture them. You can't touch them. You don't learn from your mistakes, Riddle, do you?”

It is unknown whether or not you can protect yourself with sacrificial magic, I doubt the case has ever happened before.

  • 4
    "I'm fairly certain that Lily's magic faded once Voldemort took Harry's blood and was then replaced by the Harry to Voldemort blood tether. Effectively linking Harry to the world in the same way that a Horcrux does. So from after the forbidden forest Voldemort should be able to kill Harry." This doesn't follow to me. If the tether is in effect, why would Voldemort be able to kill Harry? In other words, where does it say the tether expired?
    – CCHP
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 23:16
  • It doesn't state it explicitly, I don't think, but dumbledore may mention it, I can't recall. I have presumed that it faded upon Harry's death. Maybe something to look into. Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 23:27
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    "He took your blood believing it would strengthen him. He took into his body a tiny part of the enchantment your mother laid upon you when she died for you. His body keeps her sacrifice alive, and while that enchantment survives, so do you and so does Voldemort’s one last hope for himself" (Kings Cross chapter). Note the emphasis on "body." As long as LV's body is animated (he is alive), he cannot kill Harry.
    – CCHP
    Commented Nov 24, 2015 at 4:25
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    Later or Earlier in that chapter Dumbledore talks about how he is unsure Harry will stop Voldemort if Harry returns from Kings Cross. If Harry was effectively invincible(in regards to Voldemort) I don't think Dumbledore would be so wary about it. Also Harry is doing everything he can to put doubt into Voldemorts mind yet he doesn't mention his invincibility? Seems odd to me. Commented Nov 24, 2015 at 4:54

Canon doesn't give a direct answer to your question, so I'm going to try and give you a good subjective answer based on canon.

A: No, Lily's enchantment did not extend past the events in the Forbidden Forest.

A Brief Recap

It's important to remember that Lily's sacrificial charm was between her and Harry, until Voldemort took Harry's blood in Goblet of Fire for his resurrection potion. As we know, this bound Voldemort to Lily's enchantment and created the reciprocal bond between Harry and Voldemort. In Order of the Phoenix, Dumbledore confirmed that the only way for either Harry or Voldemort to survive was for one to kill the other. In Half-Blood Prince, we learn that, specifically, Harry would have to die in order for the scrap of Voldemort's soul that had latched onto Harry to die and allow Voldemort to finally be killed.

The Forbidden Forest

In chapter thirty-four of Deathly Hallows, The Forest Again, Harry allows Voldemort to (ostensibly) kill him; Harry enters a state of limbo (Call this state whatever you like; I just happen to use "limbo".). The way I interpret canon suggests that it is at this crucial moment that Lily's charm has to have changed in some way (Or at the moment Voldemort cast Avada Kedavra on Harry in the forest.). Now, the "neither can live while the other survives" portion of Professor Trelawney's prediction is ... I don't want to say it's been rendered moot, but a very important change has occurred, which touches on the prophecy: Whereas he couldn't before, because of his Horcruxes, Voldemort has now, unknowingly, moved into a position where he could possibly be killed.

King's Cross

What struck me about the King's Cross chapter in Deathly Hallows is that Harry is able to choose whether to die or to live. Since Lily's enchantment would not let Harry be killed by Voldemort, the fact that Harry has the option to die indicates to me that Lily's enchantment has been, if not lifted, at the very least changed. Otherwise, Harry's only option would have been to return to life. But he had a choice between life and death (Again, call "on" whatever you like. I think it means death.).

‘I’ve got to go back, haven’t I?’

‘That is up to you.’

‘I’ve got a choice?’

‘Oh yes.’ Dumbledore smiled at him. ‘We are in King’s Cross, you say? I think that if you decided not to go back, you would be able to ... let’s say ... board a train.’

‘And where would it take me?’

‘On,’ said Dumbledore simply.

Deathly Hallows - Page 578 - Chapter thirty-five, Deathly Hallows - Bloomsbury

The Battle of Hogwarts

Adding on to CCHP's answer, I want to go a little further into the quote CCHP provides, because I think it's immensely important. So, Harry and Voldemort are duelling:

‘You won’t be killing anyone else tonight,’ said Harry as they circled, and stared into each other’s eyes, green into red. ‘You won’t be able to kill any of them, ever again. Don’t you get it? I was ready to die to stop you hurting these people –’

‘But you did not!’

‘– I meant to, and that’s what did it. I’ve done what my mother did. They’re protected from you. Haven’t you noticed how none of the spells you put on them are binding? You can’t torture them. You can’t touch them. You don’t learn from your mistakes, Riddle, do you?’

Deathly Hallows - Chapter thirty-six, The Flaw in the Plan - Page 561 - Bloomsbury

Harry, through his willingness to die to save the others in the wizarding world, created a new enchantment, the same kind of enchantment that was created when Lily died to save Harry. It's unclear to me whether the new enchantment was specific to Voldemort, or whether it was more general enchantment and just kept others safe from dangerous spells, no matter who casts them. Perhaps this is better asked as a separate question. It's clear, though, that Harry and Voldemort were not acting under Lily's enchantment as they duelled in the Great Hall -- they were acting under Harry's new enchantment. There's one more bit of info that suggests Lily's enchantment did not extend past the King's Cross chapter in Deathly Hallows.

The Epilogue / Harry's Scar

The last trace of steam evaporated in the autumn air. The train rounded a corner. Harry’s hand was still raised in farewell.

‘He’ll be all right,’ murmured Ginny.

As Harry looked at her, he lowered his hand absent-mindedly and touched the lightning scar on his forehead.

‘I know he will.’

The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.
Deathly Hallows - Epilogue - Page 607 - Bloomsbury

Harry's scar tethered him to Voldemort; this connection occurred when Lily's enchantment was created.

J.K. Rowling: Well, of course the pain he feels [in his scar] whenever Voldemort's particularly active is this piece of soul seeking to rejoin the master soul. When his scar is hurting him so much, that's not scar tissue hurting him. That's this piece of soul really wanting to get back out the way it entered. It really wants to- it entered this boy's body through a wound, and it wants to rejoin the master. So when Voldemort's near him, when he's particularly active, this connection, it was always there. That's what I always imagined this pain was. Yes, so there you go.

J.K. Rowling - Interview with The Leaky Cauldron - 12.30.07

I was unable to find any example of Harry's scar hurting past the King's Cross chapter (But please do correct me if I'm wrong.). I submit that Lily's enchantment is broken at this point -- Harry does not need her protection anymore. As noted above, he has conjured his own protective charm that protects the Hogwarts students and the Order, and, presumably, himself. That Harry's scar ceases to hurt shows that his connection to Voldemort has been broken. Accordingly, Harry's desire to protect others with a new love-based enchantment shows he may have shed Lily's enchantment in an act of altruism to save those who he loved, and who were alive, rather dwelling on enchantments, however loving, of the dead. I think this, or something like this, happened when Harry was at King's Cross in Deathly Hallows.

  • A lot of good info here to hit on, but to start: 1. How can we explain the fact that Lily's protection came into play in multiple instances (if the answer is actually no)?
    – CCHP
    Commented Nov 27, 2015 at 19:14
  • "this bound Voldemort to Lily's enchantment" - I'm not quite sure what you meant by it, but as far as I'm aware, Voldemort was simply a bottle for Harry's blood (and the enchantment was attached to the blood) Commented Nov 30, 2015 at 3:14
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    Hm. Curious. I agree with your conclusion and your thoughts about Limbo and King's Cross. I 100% disagree with the rest of your answer however, since for some strange reason you seem to be assuming that Lily's protection is in some way related to Harry and Voldemort's sould/scar connection - which it in no way is. If you edit that out (and only leave the Limbo) I would be able to accept the answer :) Commented Nov 30, 2015 at 3:18
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    @Slytherincess - Lily's enchantment was what caused Harry to not be killed and bounced off the A.K. That A.K. is what split off a part of V's soul, so the only "relation" Lily's protection has to the soul based connection is that it cause A.K. to reflect back at Voldemort. It's a logical causation, not magical connection. Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 19:07
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    E.g. it's similar to saying there's no deep magical connection between Womping WIllow and Lockhart's memory loss. Even though, logically, Willow breaking Ron's wand was what caused Lockhart's memory charm to backfire at himself. Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 19:13

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