The Death Eaters obviously had no problems with murdering people, and based on the dialogue in TGOF when Voldemort returns, they knew what Horcruxes were. So why then, did none of them create their own Horcrux, even if only one? Even if Voldemort did not want them to, they still could have done it behind his back. One of his Death Eaters even went as far as to get one of his Horcruxes behind his back.

Voldemort says:

"And then I ask myself, but how could they have believed I would not rise again? They, who knew the steps I took, long ago, to guard myself against mortal death?"

Note he does not say "They who knew I took steps..." which could imply that they didn't know what steps he took. How it's worded strongly suggests that the steps he took were known to his Death Eaters (certainly at least to Regulus).

  • 2
    Given that most Death Eaters were Hogwarts alumni and there was little to no information on horcruxes there, I would assume most did not possess the knowhow...
    – Hans Olo
    Jul 24, 2018 at 15:00
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    Are you sure they actually knew what Horcruxes were? They just saw the Dark Lord coming back (thunder strikes), they were probably just nodding freneticallyto whatever he had to say not to get killed on the spot for "abandoning" his cause. Horcruxes aren't that known (even Hermione had a hard time getting info about them!), and it's not just about murdering people, it's about wanting your soul to be torn apart and all. Most Death Eaters are followers with delusions of grandeur rather than actual dark-magic theorists as Voldy was.
    – Jenayah
    Jul 24, 2018 at 15:01
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    It's unclear how much they knew - even Lucius Malfoy, an inner circle Death Eater, thought the diary was a weapon. This implies that they didn't know how to recognise a Horcrux, so at least means that Voldemort didn't show them the actual products of his work or teach them any of the magic. Hell, it would fit his character to repeatedly boast about the Horcruxes while insisting that none of his followers would have the skill to make one. Oh, as for Regulus - didn't he find out about the Horcruxes through Kreacher (when Voldemort used him to test the cave defenses)?
    – DavidS
    Jul 24, 2018 at 15:39
  • 3
    How do we know they didn't? Jul 24, 2018 at 16:04
  • 2
    @BenSandeen I like the books, but it's not like there aren't other plot holes in the books. For example: even though we later find out that Basilisk venom destroys Horcruxes, and Harry is a Horcrux, Harry is still a Horcrux after being bit by the Basilisk in Chamber of Secrets. (I know JKR has since offered an explanation on Twitter, but it feels like a ret-con to fix a plot hole rather than a planned part of the story). Plus she has admitted some regrets over introducing Time Turners and letting Harry keep the Marauders Map.
    – kuhl
    Jul 25, 2018 at 12:32

3 Answers 3


Simply put, they didn't know how to and (probably) didn't have the skill to do it without seriously injuring themselves.

Per Pottermore;

Creating a Horcrux

And so we arrive at creating a Horcrux, one of the – if not the – most difficult and extreme pieces of magic the wizarding world has to offer, for various reasons.

A Horcrux is created when a wizard takes an object and binds a piece of their soul to it. The purpose is immortality, with the logic going that as long as a piece of your soul survives within the object, then you can never truly die. It’s magic so Dark, so heinous, that it was kept a secret from most of the wizarding world. Yet despite many trying, there are only two known wizards to have discovered how to perform it: an Ancient Greek Dark wizard called Herpo the Foul, who created one Horcrux; and Voldemort, who mastered the spell and created seven. Again, as with flight, it’s an example of how Tom Riddle’s exceptional talents were twisted into evil.

Pottermore: The Hardest Wizarding World Spells

JKR herself describes this magic as something that's both dangerous and, frankly highly inadvisable.

JKR: Yeah, but I would imagine that other people, you know, other people are going to have tried. I think it would be naive not to think that people have been trying for a long time, and thought they succeeded and hadn't, or else, or else you know maim themselves or kill themselves in the attempt. It's such a dangerous thing to do.

PotterCast Interviews J.K. Rowling, part one

On top of which, Voldemort, having discovered the secret of successfully creating Horcruxes, didn't categorically tell his followers what he'd learned. This presumably was out of fear that they might divulge to his enemies that he has them.

“Then you told me, two years later, that on the night that Voldemort returned to his body, he made a most illuminating and alarming statement to his Death Eaters. “I, who have gone further than anybody along the path that leads to immortality.” That was what you told me he said. “Further than anybody.” And I thought I knew what that meant, though the Death Eaters did not. He was referring to his Horcruxes, Horcruxes in the plural, Harry, which I do not believe any other wizard has ever had.”

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 23 (Horcruxes)

He did, however drop the occasional hint in the belief that his followers were simply too dense to understand the importance of his idea. This ultimately proved his downfall.

J.K. Rowling: "Horcrux magic was not Voldemort’s own invention; as is established in the story, other wizards had done it, though never gone as far as to make six."


"Voldemort dropped oblique hints; in his arrogance, he did not believe anybody would be clever enough to understand them."

J.K. Rowling and the Live Chat, Bloomsbury.com, July 30, 2007

  • 5
    @Abless - They knew he took steps. Presumably they didn't know what steps, noting that his return is largely a myth until it actually happens
    – Valorum
    Jul 24, 2018 at 15:17
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    @Abless Voldemort is back from the (simili-)dead, and he's pissed at his guys not having put much more faith into looking for him. At this point, he's more throwing blames to scare them off, bragging about how he was always above actual death. This is your boss saying "We both know I screwed up, but you're only a minion hence the fault is yours even if you had no idea in the world how to prevent it."
    – Jenayah
    Jul 24, 2018 at 15:18
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    @Abless you should put the details from your comment here into your question, it would make a stronger argument.
    – miken32
    Jul 24, 2018 at 15:25
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    @Abless A quirk of the English is in the interpretation. "The steps I took" could mean "Step 1: Created Horcrux #1" or "Step 1: I began by preparing X,Y, Z so that when I killed a guy . . .", it could even be "Step 1: I did a thing to not die" So in that spirit, this answer is most likely correct.
    – Jake
    Jul 24, 2018 at 16:50
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    @Abless It might mean that he told the inner circle "I have made preparations that prevent my death, but I might need a new body creating. Malfoy, you get this diary - give it to a victim, and the diary will do the rest. Crouch, here's an obscure ritual to remake my body." etc - they all know he has taken steps, and that those include giving out items and instructions, but they don't necessarily know all the steps. Jul 25, 2018 at 7:23

I believe that many of his follower did not even know about horcuxes. Voldemort himself did not share this information and on the wikia it states that very few books even mentioned horcruxes and it was kept secret from the wizarding world. Dumbledore was especially adamant about this within Hogwarts

The wikia also states then when you die with a horcux you enter into a non-corporeal form and that few would live like that and most would rather die than do it. There were also side effects to creating Horcruxes the wiki states,

One of these such side-effects is the "dehumanising" effect the mutilation of one's soul is said to have. The more Horcruxes one creates, the less human they become, both emotionally and physically

I would assume that most people simply did not know about them and those that did would not want to deal with the side effects.

  • 8
    I mean look at the face... You have to be really committed to do that to yourself...
    – Nelson
    Jul 25, 2018 at 2:20

It is extremely difficult to create a Horcrux. Even Grindelwald did not make one, and he is regarded as the second darkest wizard of all time. Also, it is almost as difficult to find out how to create a Horcrux then to actually do it. I found that information from this:

The nature and concepts of Horcruxes were so terrible, they were kept secret from most of the wizarding world, and very few people were ever made aware of their nature. Hogwarts banned any study of the subject of Horcruxes; Albus Dumbledore was particularly adamant in enforcing this rule.

Very few books, even those revolving around the Dark Arts, would mention Horcruxes even in the slightest detail: Magick Moste Evile, a book that contained much information of advanced dark arts, barely skimmed the subject of Horcruxes as an evil subject that will not be spoken of. In fact, only one known book, Secrets of the Darkest Art, had detailed information on the method and consequences of creating a Horcrux.

So even if they knew of Horcruxes' existence, they would have to track down a probably illegal book that would be very difficult to find. If they managed to find the book, it would most likely be filled with highly complex magic that they might not be capable of doing. And then there were the other effects of the Horcruxes; mental instability, a less human physical form, and a variety of other things. As Slughorn states:

Few would want to live in such a form and death would be preferable to most.

  • 4
    It's a nice thing from you to quote your sources, but just so you know, the wikia for Harry Potter is often full of idle guesses and rumors, so it's not the best source of information - Pottermore for instance, as well as the books and interviews of course, are more trustworthy. And I'll repeat what someone already told you - if you're interested in contributing here, you might want to register your account. You'd be welcome :)
    – Jenayah
    Jul 30, 2018 at 21:48
  • 1
    I know that, but Pottermore had nothing on Horcruxes in general. And this article seems to fit with the information I already had. Pottermore is my 1st source, but it wasn't helpful this time.
    – Smartie
    Aug 2, 2018 at 14:54
  • 1
    Define "Horcruxes in general"? This page and this query show good results.
    – Jenayah
    Aug 2, 2018 at 14:58
  • 1
    Both of those are only giving info on Voldemort's Horcruxes.
    – user103390
    Aug 15, 2018 at 21:58

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