In the 5th book/movie, Harry and other students made a secret organization. They signed their names on a paper titled "Dumbledore's Army".

When the paper was discovered by Inquisitorial Squad and Umbridge, Dumbledore lied to Minister for Magic to save students. He said that he instructed Harry to build this army and the paper clearly says Dumbledore's Army, not Harry's Army.

But, did Dumbledore know about this secret organization prior to this event?

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    We know that the trio hadn't told him. We can be sure no one else did as well, because otherwise Hermione's jinx would've given them away. Whether Dumbledore knew, though, is impossible to answer. Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 20:00
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    @Gallifreyan We know that no member of the group told Dumbledore due to Hermione's jinx. That wouldn't (and indeed didn't) prevent somebody who overheard plans for such a group from telling anybody they liked, though, since they would have never signed the jinxed piece of parchment. Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 20:08

2 Answers 2


Unknown. But probably.

Remember that Albus's brother, Aberforth, owned and ran The Hog's Head, where the first Dumbledore's Army meeting was held. Aberforth Dumbledore was in the room when the meeting was held.

The barman sidled towards them out of a back room. He was a grumpy-looking old man with a great deal of long grey hair and beard. He was tall and thin and looked vaguely familiar to Harry.
(Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 16, In the Hog's Head).

We know that Aberforth was in the habit of slipping his brother information about his customers.

"Then if I were to go to the Hog's Head tonight, I would not find a group of them - Nott, Rosier, Mulciber, Dolohov - awaiting your return? Devoted friends indeed, to travel this far with you on a snowy night, merely to wish you luck as you attempted to secure a teaching post."
There could be no doubt that Dumbledore's detailed knowledge of those with whom he was travelling was even less welcome to Voldemort; however, he rallied almost at once.
"You are omniscient as ever, Dumbledore."
"Oh, no, merely friendly with the local barman," said Dumbledore lightly.
(Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 20, Lord Voldemort's Request).

As Anthony Grist says, Mundungus Fletcher was an Order member who was also at the same meeting so Dumbledore could have heard it from him. Or from both Mundungus and Aberforth.

We know that when he was confronted with the group's existence by Fudge that he was very open about the fact that Harry held a DADA meeting in The Hog's Head.

"Cornelius, I do not deny - and nor, I am sure, does Harry - that he was in the Hog's Head that day, nor that he was trying to recruit students to a Defence Against the Dark Arts group. I am merely pointing out that Dolores is quite wrong to suggest that such a group was, at that time, illegal."
(Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 27, The Centaur and the Sneak).

I think it's doubtful that Dumbledore would've been so forceful in making that statement if he had been completely oblivious of the group's existence before that point.

We can't be sure whether or not Dumbledore was aware of the DA meetings that took place in Hogwarts. But we do know that Dumbledore was aware of most things that go on at Hogwarts and that he was keeping a close eye on Harry, so he probably knew about those meetings too.


It's never explicitly stated in the books, but he was more than likely aware of the existence of the group, even if he wasn't aware of the name chosen.

We know that Mundungus Fletcher overheard the original plans for a secret Defence Against the Dark Arts group in the Hog's Head, and that he then told Sirius.

"Not that good," said Harry, as Hermione pulled Crookshanks back to stop him singeing his whiskers. "The Ministry's forced through another decree, which means we're not allowed to have Quidditch teams —"
"— or secret Defense Against the Dark Arts groups?" said Sirius.
There was a short pause.
"How did you know about that?" Harry demanded.
"You want to choose your meeting places more carefully," said Sirius, grinning still more broadly. "The Hog's Head, I ask you..."
"Well, it was better than the Three Broomsticks!" said Hermione defensively. "That's always packed with people —"
"— which means you'd have been harder to overhear," said Sirius. "You've got a lot to learn, Hermione."
"Who overheard us?" Harry demanded.
"Mundungus, of course," said Sirius, and when they all looked puzzled he laughed. "He was the witch under the veil."
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter Seventeen

It's possible that Mundungus only ever told Sirius, who didn't share that information with anybody else, but this seems unlikely. For a start, Mundungus doesn't seem particularly good at keeping secrets, and Sirius is likely to share this information with Dumbledore, since it would likely be relevant information in order to keep Harry safe.

  • Forgot about that part.Good answer! Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 20:17
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    Don't forget Molly Weasley knew which must imply that Mundungus didn't just tell Sirius on the hush hush
    – Au101
    Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 20:55
  • Mundungus was also in the order due to his loyalty to Dumbledore, if i recall right, so Dumbledore was most likely his first contact or at least notes left for him.
    – Himarm
    Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 22:10
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    @AnthonyGrist It's about a page after your quote. Commented Jul 27, 2017 at 9:26
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    @Au101 I haven't read the books for a couple of years (due for a re-read soon!), and only read far enough to get a quote for the part I did remember. If only I'd kept on reading a little further I would have seen that part! Commented Jul 27, 2017 at 13:33

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