35

So today I found out that my best friend's sister got taken by a beast into a place called the Chamber of Secretions.

I went down there together with my best friend Wazlib to try and rescue her using only two magical wooden sticks (one was broken) and a hysterical teacher. Unfortunately along the way I get separated from them and I'm left with only one wand. Anyways, it gets stolen by a memory-ghost later on and I couldn't be bothered to wrest it back just yet.

No phoenix arrives to save the day. No magical hat containing a sword appears.

Is there another sure-fire way to kill a Basilisk other than using the Sword of Gryffindor (and the help of a phoenix)?

If they're similar to snakes, could I just conjure a few giant mongooses to help me kill it, or alternatively Avada it to death? Does Rowling answer this?


For those with a low sense of humour... read on

So, I was wondering if the Basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets had any other weaknesses other than having to be stabbed by the Sword of Gryffindor. I think it's a bit ridiculous that Harry and Ronald decide to just waltz into the Chamber armed with only two wands, trying to save Ginny from the "likely" Basilisk in there.
If Fawkes didn't come, how else could the Basilisk have been killed?

  • 9
    No. You don't have a wand. – Kreiri Jun 21 '17 at 8:26
  • 13
    I bet smashing its head with a giant rock would help. – Gallifreyan Jun 21 '17 at 8:49
  • 8
    Showing it its own reflection in a mirror may do it. – The Dark Lord Jun 21 '17 at 12:54
  • 5
    If you turn a time-turner enough times, you can stomp the basilisk's egg before it hatches. It's sure-fire as long as there is no paradox-preventing principle in action in your Universe, so your mileage may vary ... – xDaizu Jun 21 '17 at 15:23
  • 8
    +1 for Ronil Wazlib. Love that bloke. – user74421 Jun 22 '17 at 0:54
40

From Chamber of Secrets (emphasis mine):

It was a page torn from a very old library book [...] Spiders flee before the Basilisk, for it is their mortal enemy, and the Basilisk flees only from the crowing of the rooster, which is fatal to it.

So, the Basilisk has no natural enemies other than the rooster (so the mongooses won't be any good). I don't think something like Avada Kedavra would be enough to kill it though, but I can't remember any reference in the books.

  • 7
    the Basilisk has no natural enemies: the giant mongooses as asked in the question wouldn't be natural enemies – user13267 Jun 21 '17 at 9:23
  • 9
    Why wouldn't Avada Kedavra work? It can kill any living creature. And the basilisk is surely a living creature. The fact that Harry was so famous for being the only one who ever survived it, makes it even more clear. Otherwise, Harry would be just another random lucky survivor among lots of others. – vsz Jun 21 '17 at 15:58
  • 9
    @vsz It just seems to me that it wouldn't be such a terrifying monster if it could be killed by a curse that any trained wizard can do. Plus, Harry is the only human that survived the killing curse, I'm not sure that applies to any living creature (for example giants are known to be resistant to attacks). – elrond Jun 21 '17 at 16:15
  • 9
    JKR didn't think this entirely through. If the crowing of the rooster is fatal to the Basilisk, then the Basilisk can't flee it; It should croak on the spot or nearly. Aside from that, if a rooster engages in a staring contest with a Basilisk... who wins? – Iwillnotexist Idonotexist Jun 21 '17 at 17:17
  • 7
    The Killing Curse would probably work on the Basalisk, but like Moody Crouch says, it takes a lot of power behind it to kill even a person with it. What sort of power that is, we don't really get to see, but I think it's assumed that a powerful enough magic-user could kill anything with a Killing Curse. – user74421 Jun 22 '17 at 0:56
14

While the crow of a rooster is a sure-fire way to kill a Basilisk, there is no sense in the books that Basilisks have any special defenses.

After all, Fawkes was able to poke out its eyes, which at least suggests that it would be susceptible to the Conjunctivitis Curse. Though, "susceptible" might be a little strong, since you usually need to be looking at the target of a curse, and that's probably not the best play when taking on a creature that kills you if you see its eyes.

It is also not stated that Basilisks have any special magical defenses the way Giants and Dragons mostly do. After all, most curses involve looking at the target, so the Basilisk's death glare would seem sufficient defense against them.

Given the lack of details, I would say that it's perfectly reasonable to assume that a Basilisk is a very dangerous and large snake. And thus, outside of rooster crowing, they would tend to be vulnerable to things that large snakes are vulnerable to: crushing, chopping, etc. I rather suspect that a sword would not need to be made of Goblin silver to be capable of cutting the head off of a Basilisk.

Though the sword probably wouldn't survive, due to the incredibly destructive Basilisk venom. But it might last long enough to do the job. Though this would involve getting within fang-range of the Basilisk, which also is quite fatal unless Phoenix tears are handy.

Mongooses would likely not be helpful because Basilisks can kill with a look. Also, Basilisks are quite large, and the mongoose is not.

The big problem here is that you posed this as a wand-less fight. That tends to narrow down ones Wizarding options pretty drastically. So unless there were weapons lying around, or one could lure the Basilisk into some kind of trap (and do so while effectively blind), this encounter will probably not end well. While the Basilisk would likely be injured by hurled rocks, hitting targets while blind is quite hard.

  • 1
    RPG. Why waste time with magic when you have perfectly suited mundane tools at your disposal? – GreySage Jun 21 '17 at 18:21
4

Possibly a mirror.

Certainly in the legends about basilisks (and likewise the similar cockatrice, who is also killed by rooster crows and may be a variant on the same original myth), it was often held that basilisks were not immune to their own petrifying gaze, and therefore a direct stare at a mirror would cause it to suffer the same fate as its victims.

One way that Rowling differs from that legend (and of course, like all legends there are variations so there's no "real" version), is that mirrors weaken the force of the attack. That does not mean that it is immune to that weakened attack, so potentially you could use a mirror to put one into a magical coma, and then while it was safely in that state just cut it into nice manageable chunks.

This isn't confirmed or denied canonically, so since Rowling says conventional armies would defeat wizards in a fight, which presumably includes whatever creatures they could recruit to fight with them, I'd recommend a large-caliber machine-gun fired at long-range, or maybe a few grenades.

3

Well, there are a few ways (definitely not foolproof) I can think of:

  1. Thanks to the memory ghost guy, you can talk to snakes. And if you have a good sense of humour, you can crack one or two great rooster jokes and let him DIE laughing.

  2. As the dark lord suggested in comments as well, if you know swimming, jump into water. The basilisk will follow suit and if he sees his own eyes in the reflection, he'll die.

  3. As you can talk to snakes, tell him that we are living in 21st century and slavery is over and the heir is making him a fool by letting him follow thousand years old practice (slavery), he might spare you and beat the crap out of the Slytherin heir.

  4. As its almost 2 years since you have joined school now and there's quite some chance that you have interacted with Cedric Diggory. If he might have told you about Twilight, you can tell the full Twilight story to basilisk. He will automatically die of boredom.

P.S. : Please ignore if you find it odd that I'm using he/him rather than it for Basilisk. I am from India. We don't write animals/birds as non-livings.

  • The reflection would likely only cause it to petrify itself rather than kill it. Sure that opens other options open which may then help cause its death, but a reflection may not be a surefire way of killing it. – gabe3886 Jun 22 '17 at 10:53
  • another way: by snatching the wand from Riddle's memory ghost and then threatening to destroy the diary by Confringo or any other spell, so that Riddle tells a way to kill the beast. Riddle was fully capable of destroying the beast. As a last resort, as the snake listened to Riddle, Riddle could ask the Snake to suicide. – Dheeraj Kumar Jun 22 '17 at 11:29
  • 3
    You could also tell the monster it isn't good enough and play the long game of ruining its self esteem and depriving it of the will to live. – Jack B Nimble Jun 22 '17 at 13:24
  • @JackBNimble xkcd.com/1027 – marcellothearcane Jun 22 '17 at 20:25

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.