We know HP's born on July 31, 1980, there's overwhelming fan-directed and Rowling-based evidence, along with pretty transparent clues.

But then, I reread the chapter of his 11th birthday (here is a timeline), and the text details the Dursley's trip day after day of the week, but as far as I can tell, the only absolute time frame for these events is "one day in July". There's a massive hint in the Hogwarts letter about "awaiting his owl by no later than 31 July" [which happens to be that very day], but that's no knowledge foundation either.

Is his exact birth date ever mentioned explicitly in the books?

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    See this answer.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Jul 24, 2016 at 16:22
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    Doesn't the prophecy say something like "born as the seventh month dies"?
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Jul 24, 2016 at 16:30
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    It does, and that's what I link to under "transparent clues". But that's not evidence (July dies anywhere from 25 to 31st if you ask me, and maybe July is not 7th month either), it's the birth date that makes the prophecy relevant, not the other way around. Commented Jul 24, 2016 at 16:34
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    @Rand al'Thor: One point of the prophecy is that it could have referred to Neville, too, who was born one day before Harry (on July 30). So “as the seventh month dies” is intentionally imprecise.
    – chirlu
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 0:00
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    why is this question on the HNQ while the same question which already has proper answers has 2 downvotes? sciFi SE is so unfair
    – user13267
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 2:38

2 Answers 2



In Philosopher's Stone, Harry is reading the Daily Prophet report on the Gringott's break-in, which occurred on his birthday (bold is my emphasis, italic is from the text):


Investigations continue into the break-in at Gringotts on 31 July, widely believed to be the work of Dark wizards or witches unknown. Gringotts goblins today insisted that nothing had been taken. The vault that was searched had in fact been emptied the same day.


"Hagrid!" said Harry, "that Gringotts break-in happened on my birthday! It might've been happening while we were there!"

Philosopher's Stone Chapter 8: "The Potions Master"

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    Did he remark it was on his birthday in the movie too? I seem to remember that he did because reading that except reminded me of the movie scene
    – Insane
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 3:57
  • @Insane I don't believe so, no. But it's been a while since I saw the film, so I could be misremembering Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 4:05
  • Also the prophecy states that Voldermot's enemy will be born when the "seventh month dies/ends" (can't remember exact quote) but implying last day of July.
    – Zikato
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 10:28
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    @Zikato See the discussion in the comments on the question for why that's insufficient. I particularly like how chirlu puts it Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 13:41

In the beginning of Deathly Hallows we have the following statement:

"The Trace'll break on the thirty-first," said Harry.

On the morning of his birthday we have the following passage (my emphasis):

"I try not to either," said Ron. "Well, happy birthday anyway."

"Wow — that's right, I forgot! I'm seventeen!"

Harry seized the wand lying beside his bed, pointed it at the cluttered desk where he had left his glasses, and said, "Accio Glasses!" Although they were only around a foot away, there was something immensely satisfying about seeing them zoom toward him, at least until they poked him in the eye.

"Slick," snorted Ron.

Reveling in the removal of his Trace, Harry sent Ron's possessions flying around the room, causing Pigwidgeon to wake up and flutter excitedly around his cage.

So, if the Trace breaks on the thirty-first, and the Trace breaks on Harry's birthday, the transitive property tells us that Harry's birthday must be the thirty-first.


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