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This question already has an answer here:

If George had stocked on some of his hairs before his ear got cut off by Snape, could he have used polyjuice potion to turn into a version of himself with both the ears?

From Goblet of Fire we know that polyjuice replicates deformities of the target, when Barty Crouch Jr Changes into Moody and has all his scars and fake leg.

We also know it replicates better body conditions from Chamber of Secrets, when Harry no longer needed his glasses after turning into Crabbe.

Would this be true if the body part had been cursed off by dark magic as well?

(In fact, in case of the twins George probably didn't even need to have a stock of his own hair, he could just polyjuice himself into Fred and no one would know the difference.)

marked as duplicate by Alex harry-potter Jul 28 at 21:24

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  • I closed this as a duplicate of the other question since even though this one is coming from a different angle, it seems to be essentially the same question – can you use polyjuice to turn into an earlier version of yourself? There's also this question which I can't add as a duplicate since it has no answer. – Alex Jul 28 at 21:26
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Yes, it probably can.

Moody's amputations are the best proof, the potion mimicked them and restored the limbs when it ran out - and I believe his leg and eye were lost to dark magic, so it's a very close match. Granted this is imposing polyjuiced wounds on healthy flesh, but I don't recall any reason it wouldn't work the other way around. Actually, when Harry polyjuices as Goyle, his scar is covered up, which would be fairly close - hiding the dark magic wound under the polyjuiced feature.

The question is, what would it buy him? The wound wouldn't heal under polyjuice, as far as we know, it puts everything back where it began unless something goes drastically wrong. Even positive benefits like improved vision ran out at the end of the hour. So for the time and trouble of making or buying a very complicated and expensive potion, he can look like his ear isn't missing for an hour at a time. He might be able to do as much with an illusion, or perhaps a transfiguration, or a hat. It doesn't seem to be a long term solution, and a merely missing ear doesn't seem worth it very often.

  • Worked fine as a long-term solution for Croody, though (and George really could just use some of Fred's hair to do it… well, until the Battle of Hogwarts at least). – Janus Bahs Jacquet Mar 19 '16 at 18:41
  • I don't quite follow the reasoning here. The question is asking about restoring cursed off limbs by turning into an earlier version of yourself (i.e. a version that no longer exists), while your examples are of turning into the currently existing versions of people. – Alex Jul 28 at 21:27
  • @Alex - the reasoning is yes, polyjuice can restore them, since it does successfully add and remove cursed wounds, limbs, etc when used in canon, but it won't heal the underlying wound... after one hour it will revert right back to where you started. And with something like a month to brew it, and both expensive ingredients and extremely limited ingredients (one's pre-injury version of said ingredient), it's unlikely to be worth it unless circumstances are extraordinary. – Megha Jul 28 at 21:34
  • But those cases just show that you can turn into someone who is currently missing a limb that you have or who currently has a limb that you don't have. How do we extrapolate from there to a case of turning into a body that doesn't currently exist at all? – Alex Jul 28 at 21:39
  • @Alex - the question as written seems to be asking about the difference with wounds made with dark magic, which the addition/subtraction of cursed wounds does show (especially since the alternative as written was to polyjuice as a twin). The question doesn't really ask about the temporal restrictions of the ingredient, which has some evidence both for and against in canon - on one hand, Moody needed to be alive, so just saved hairs wouldn't seem to work, on the other it didn't seem to replicate the cut hairs or any injuries acquired while imprisoned.. no evidence either way, I think. – Megha Jul 28 at 21:52

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