Toward the end of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Barty Crouch Jr is forced to reveal his entire story, under the influence of Veritaserum. At one point, he tells everyone:

"My master sent me word of my father's escape. He told me to stop him at all costs. So I waited and watched. I used the map I had taken from Harry Potter. The map that had almost ruined everything."

The book doesn't explain this any further. How did Voldemort "send word" to Crouch Jr? And frankly, why aren't more people concerned that the Dark Lord is able to get messages to potential traitors within the highly-guarded and highly-protected fortress of Hogwarts?

  • "why aren't more people concerned that the Dark Lord is able to get messages to potential traitors within the highly-guarded and highly-protected fortress of Hogwarts?" It's the least worrying thing he's done during Harry's time there, to be honest. Jun 23, 2016 at 14:09

2 Answers 2


They used owls to communicate. Harry actually sees the moment when Voldemort receives a letter from Crouch Jr. in one of his dreams.

He was riding on the back of an eagle owl, soaring through the clear blue sky toward an old, ivy-covered house set high on a hillside. Lower and lower they flew, the wind blowing pleasantly in Harry's face, until they reached a dark and broken window in the upper story of the house and entered. Now they were flying along a gloomy passageway, to a room at the very end… through the door they went, into a dark room whose windows were boarded up…


"You are in luck, Wormtail," said a cold, high-pitched voice from the depths of the chair in which the owl had landed. "You are very fortunate indeed. Your blunder has not ruined everything. He is dead."

The night Crouch arrives at Hogwarts, Harry also sees an eagle owl flying around the grounds.

Pigwidgeon was much too small to carry an entire ham up to the mountain by himself, so Harry enlisted the help of two school screech owls as well. When they had set off into the dusk, looking extremely odd carrying the large package between them. Harry leaned on the windowsill, looking out at the grounds, at the dark, rustling treetops of the Forbidden Forest, and the rippling sails of the Durmstrang ship. An eagle owl flew through the coil of smoke rising from Hagrid's chimney; it soared toward the castle, around the Owlery, and out of sight.

Since these are the only two mentions of an eagle owl in the book, the implication is that its same owl. Likely, Voldemort sent the owl warning that Crouch would appear, and then Crouch Jr. used the same owl afterwards to tell Voldemort the deed was done.

  • 1
    Only problem with this theory is that Voldemort "sent word" to Crouch Jr. one week before Crouch Sr. arrived. From three paragraphs after the one I quoted: "For a week I waited for my father to arrive at Hogwarts".
    – Paul L
    Jun 23, 2016 at 14:15
  • 1
    timing aside, it's got to be owls - Harry is able to communicate with a Ministry-convicted murder on the run via owls to and from Hogwarts, so this makes the most sense
    – NKCampbell
    Jun 23, 2016 at 14:52
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    @PaulL True, but that would be far from the first time JK Rowling made a glaring time/date/math error. Jun 23, 2016 at 15:23

Only speculations here.


They use the Dark Mark. We know Voldemort can summoned all the Death Eaters, and Death Eaters can... Do something with it, exemple:

During the T7, in the Malfoy's Manor, they want to call Voldemort because they captured Harry. We don't know if they want to send a message "Potter captured" trough the mark or if they can just summoned Voldemort.

Only depend of the Mark powers. Don't know all of it. (very few info in the books about Dark Mark powers)


Crouch go for a specific place all the week for obtain crypted message and send news to Voldemort.


Pettigrew use a secret passage and rat form for enter the castle and deliver message. Sirius did it the last year, he can do the same.


Take a few of three others, and obtain this one.

Voldemort use the mark of Pettigrew for "summon" Crouch. It's a code for "problem, go here and take news instructions". Crouch go for a specific place defined during summer, meet Pettigrew and obtain the message from Voldemort.

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