In the last battle between Harry and Voldemort, I remember something like,

The wand soared in a high ark, towards a master it would not hurt (or kill?)

So my question is, what would happen if someone directed their wand toward themselves and cast a spell, like some minor hex (e.g. Petrificus Totalus), or even if they did the Killing curse? Would the spell work?

  • 6
    Well you can certainly transfigure yourself, you can perform the bubble-head charm on yourself, it's implied you can perform healing magic on yourself. I think you'd struggle to make avada kedavra work on yourself, but perhaps someone in a truly horrible frame of mind could manage it
    – Au101
    Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 4:21
  • That's why I wrote the term minor hex.. I know the you could transfigure and charm yourself, but what about hurting yourself a little? And what if one wants to suicide by a spell (:P)... Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 4:22
  • I have this vague idea someone stunned them-self to act innocent in a scene or someone suggested they do that.
    – Himarm
    Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 4:36
  • 2
    Would you consider changing the title to something like "what happens if you try an offensive spell on yourself?" - you're probably more likely to get the answers you want that way. I'd happily do it myself, but I don't want to narrow your question down further than you were intending
    – Au101
    Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 4:43
  • 2
    Me: Ooh, a Harry Potter question! This sounds fun! (reads question and comments) Me: Well that got dark and disturbing real fast :(
    – RedCaio
    Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 5:58

5 Answers 5


Technically, although without meaning to, Ronald Weasley cast a slug vomiting curse on himself.

Ron plunged his hand into his robes, pulled out his wand, yelling, “You’ll pay for that one, Malfoy!” and pointed it furiously under Flint’s arm at Malfoys face.

A loud bang echoed around the stadium and a jet of green light shot out of the wrong end of Ron’s wand, hitting him in the stomach and sending him reeling backward onto the grass.

Presumably as long as the spell is performed correctly the spell will act correctly no matter what way the wand is pointing. In this case the magic happened to shoot out the wrong end of the wand.

Near enough the same thing happened to Lockhart when he tried to Obliviate Harry and Ron in the Chamber

He raised Ron’s Spellotaped wand high over his head and yelled, “Obliviate!”

The wand exploded with the force of a small bomb.

I think under normal circumstances the problem would be performing the spell properly whilst pointing the wand at yourself.

  • @N_Soong Himarm actually reminded me with his comment above. Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 5:26
  • I think these are some wand defects.... Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 5:36
  • I would still say the spell is being performed on the user @prakharlondhe Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 5:39
  • The answers good :)... can you look at my answer and suggest if it can be a possible explanation? Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 5:40
  • Also Barty Crouch Jr. Stunned himself in GOF... Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 5:46

while a hypothetical situation, Ron has said this

"Okay...hows this for a theory," said Ron excitedly. "Krum attacked Crouch - no, wait for it - and then Stunned himself!"

"And Mr. Crouch evaporated, did he?" said Hermione coldly.

"Oh yeah..."

Now a misstep in how magic works is almost ALWAYS caught by Hermione, especially when its by Ron and she can shove it in his face. Remember at this time she is also fairly fond of Krum which is why she responds so coldly towards Ron.

So while hypothetical at the time the 3 of them at least accepted that you can stun yourself.

  • Exactly the point: Hermione is at that moment not thinking with her analytical mind for a change, (being worried about her Vicky getting stunned and Harry in the midst of yet another mysterious attack, so she could be missing the fact that it might not be possible to selfstun. It might be even be so out there she doesn't dignify it with an answer.... or it could actually be a real possibibility, yet I see no strong evidence either way...
    – BMWurm
    Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 15:29

It would probably work and even kill the caster.

Luna Lovegood's mother died because a spell of her own backfired, therefore it is certainly possible to die because of one's own spell, at least accidentally.

Moreover, the main requirement to cast the Killing Curse(and, for that matter, the Cruciatus) is intent, so I guess that -keeping aside issues related to the wand core or wood- a sufficiently motivated wizard could intentionally torture or even kill himself.


In addition to the examples given in the other answers, don’t forget that we do actually have two completely certain examples of Avada Kedavra working as intended on the caster of the spell. In both cases, the caster is Voldemort and the intended victim is Harry.

Granted, Voldemort wasn’t trying to kill himself, and he wasn’t pointing the wand at himself; but in both his first attempt when Harry was a baby and his final attempt during the Battle of Hogwarts, the spell basically acted as though it had been reflected off a mirror and then went back to hit Voldemort himself.

There doesn’t seem to be any reason to suspect that the outcome would have been any different if he had done away with the ‘mirror’ and just pointed it straight at himself.


Remember that in the 7th Harry Potter Book (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, portrayed in the eight movie, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2) Voldemort killed his own horcrux which at the time was resident in Harry Potter’s body. Unless, of course, you would say the Elder wand which he used at the time did not belong to him, but then, he pronounced the curse and it killed his own horcrux in Harry Potter, which was a part of his soul. Technically, if you could kill your soul (seat of the mind, emotions and conscience) then you’ve killed you.

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