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Florean Fortescue was said to be captured and subsequently killed by Death Eaters during the Second Wizarding War (the capture happened in 1996, as mentioned in Half-Blood Prince).

A few windows were boarded up, including those of Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor.

What was the reason for the Death Eaters capturing and later killing Florean Fortescue?

  • 32
    Tom Riddle must have really hated ice cream as a child. – maguirenumber6 Jun 6 '17 at 14:25
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    @maguirenumber6 Or loved it. Maybe he captured him so he could have his own private supply. – The Dark Lord Jun 6 '17 at 16:53
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    @TheDarkLord, Now we know why they're called Death Eaters. – user1717828 Jun 6 '17 at 17:43
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    Perhaps the Dark Lord and the Death Eaters just wanted some ice cream. – Bellatrix Jun 6 '17 at 19:45
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    Ice cream headaches drives him to do bad things. – eshier Jun 6 '17 at 20:19
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It's a left-over bit from a dropped plot point. The following quote from Rowling I found at the Harry Potter wiki, originally from Pottermore:

Florean is a descendant of Dexter, and I originally planned Florean to be the conduit for clues that I needed to give Harry during his quest for the Hallows, which is why I established an acquaintance fairly early on. At this stage, I imagined the historically-minded Florean might have a smattering of information on matters as diverse as the Elder Wand and the diadem of Ravenclaw, the information having been passed down in the Fortescue family from their august ancestor. As I worked my way nearer to the point where such information would become necessary, I caused Florean to be kidnapped, intending him to be found or rescued by Harry and his friends.

The problem was that when I came to write the key parts of Deathly Hallows I decided that Phineas Nigellus Black was a much more satisfactory means of conveying clues. Florean's information on the diadem also felt redundant, as I could give the reader everything he or she needed by interviewing the Grey Lady. All in all, I seemed to have had him kidnapped and killed for no reason. He is not the first wizard whom Voldemort murdered because he knew too much (or too little), but he is the only one I feel guilty about because it was all my fault

  • 36
    @Edlothiad I don't see that at all. It explains what he was intended for that would have gotten him taken and killed (a conduit of information that Harry needed) and why he was not used that way, leading to the fact that he was taken and killed, but we never (in the book) discovered why. – eshier Jun 6 '17 at 15:28
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    I disagree - I think it answers the question perfectly. What is wrong with pasting a block of text? It's literally the author's answer to the asked question... – Korthalion Jun 6 '17 at 15:37
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    @Edlothiad This answers the question perfectly. It explains the issue and why it exists. – SethWhite Jun 6 '17 at 15:52
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    @Himarm The question doesn't ask whether the issue was covered in the book. – Wlerin Jun 6 '17 at 16:28
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    @Himarm It pretty clearly indicates that the issue is not covered in the book: "a dropped plot point", "[Rowling] had him kidnapped and killed for no reason".... – Kyle Strand Jun 6 '17 at 16:34
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We don't know Voldemort's/Death Eaters' motivation.

‘Did you hear about Florean Fortescue, Remus?’ asked Bill ‘Dragged off, by the look of his place.’

‘Why?’ asked Ron, while Mrs Weasley pointedly glared at Bill.

‘Who knows? He must’ve upset them somehow. He was a good man, Florean.’
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

From Pottermore - Rowling decided to kill him off for no reason.

All in all, I seemed to have had him kidnapped and killed for no reason. He is not the first wizard whom Voldemort murdered because he knew too much (or too little), but he is the only one I feel guilty about, because it was all my fault.
By J. K. Rowling on Pottermore

  • 34
    In your quest to avoid your "wall of text" as you put it, stating that "Rowling decided to kill him off for no reason" seriously undersells her actual reasoning. She had a reason originally. That reason eventually evolved. That context is important in understanding why Fortescue died "for no reason." As it is, your answer sounds like Rowling just decided the character needed to randomly die, when that wasn't the case at all. It eventually was the result, but that wasn't the intent. And the question is asking why that is. – Ellesedil Jun 6 '17 at 18:52
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    @Ellesedil the question isnt asking about why Rowling decided to not go forward with the Florean, its asking for the Death eaters motives. The answer is, we dont know the motives. as an aside, we know out of world that she simply wanted a random "named" person to die to the death eaters, and Florean fit the bill. the rest of the quote is superfluous as it has no effect on answering the question, as asked. – Himarm Jun 6 '17 at 18:56
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    Then why include Rowling's quote at all? – Ellesedil Jun 6 '17 at 18:58
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    Since when is giving too much of an answer a bad thing? Your answer is just as long as the other one, yet cuts out vital information that many (most?) readers would appreciate. – methuseus Jun 6 '17 at 21:43
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    Your first quote is pretty useless - all it says is that a few characters in one scene don't know why FF was kidnapped, not that we the readers never find out. Your second quote doesn't make much sense without the surrounding context as supplied in the other answer (and any JKR quote is dubious anyway). – Rand al'Thor Jun 7 '17 at 10:48

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