I know that House Elves can Apparate inside Hogwarts, but this comment made me question whether they could Side-Along Apparate a human to/from Hogwarts. From what canon tells us, it is impossible for humans to Apparate within the grounds of Hogwarts, which seems to indicate that this should be a simple question, but the events that took place in the Malfoy's cellar in The Deathly Hallows made me curious.

Ron was now trying to Disapparate without a wand.

“There’s no way out, Ron,” said Luna, watching his fruitless efforts. “The cellar is completely escape-proof. I tried, at first. Mr. Ollivander has been here for a long time, he’s tried everything.”

According to this answer from Slytherincess, somewhat of our resident expert on Harry Potter, a wand does not seem to be required to Apparate. The fact that Ron was unable to Disapparate, as well as Luna's assurance to him that "the cellar is completely escape-proof" seems to indicate that some sort of enchantment was put over the cellar to prevent people from Disapparating out of there.

Further evidence for the enchantment happens when Dobby arrives, and Harry asks;

“You can Disapparate out of this cellar?” he asked Dobby, who nodded, his ears flapping. “And you can take humans with you?

The fact that an enchantment seems to be present, and that despite this Dobby is still able to Side-Along Apparate them out, to me indicates at least some evidence that it should be possible within the grounds of Hogwarts (assuming that the same enchantment was used). So my question is, is there canonical evidence (other than listed above) that either backs up this theory, or that refutes it?

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    Just to clarify in case it's not obvious from the wording: OP is asking whether house-elves can side-along apparate someone in Hogwarts who can't apparate on their own; he is not asking whether they can apparate themselves (which is answered in linked question). Commented Aug 22, 2012 at 1:04

5 Answers 5


I don't recall any canonical evidence that house-elves can or can not side-along apparate others inside Hogwarts.

However, it seems likely that they can:

  • We know that side-along apparating inside Hogwarts is possible for magical creatures as a concept: Fawkes flashed out of Dodge City with Dumbledore.

  • We know from canon in general that you can side-along apparate without participation of the other person (e.g. they don't have to be able to apparate).

  • There is no mention that there are different versions of Anti-Apparation Charm. Therefore we can reasonably assume that the one used in Malfoy Manor was identical to the one use in Hogwarts. And Dobby can side-along apparate in the first case as you noted.

Not quite a proof, but seems to be more supportive of the idea than not on balance.

  • @DavidStratton - while you are correct, i think that your logic is inapplicable here. As OP explicitly noted, we already ARE assuming (actually knowing) that houseelves can apparate inside Hogwarts. The question is, can they side-along apparate someone with them who can't apparate on their own. The Horcrux Cave and Kreacher don't shine any light there since it was not a side-along with a wizard (and we don't need any extra proof that elves alone can apparate in Hogwarts since one exists in canon - see the Q linked by OP). Commented Aug 22, 2012 at 1:00
  • I have just listened to the chapters about the battle of Hogwarts and was appalled by the fact that nobody has even mentioned the possibility of evacuating people with house elves. There is no conclusive proof of that being possible, true, but why in the world don't the characters even contemplate the idea?! We have plenty of mentions of elves being capable of apparating under protective charms in and out, and we even have an instance of side-along apparition with Dobby in that very book... And the trio remembers hundreds of elves are there right before the battle. Well... That's just weird. Commented Apr 13, 2016 at 9:35

I must disagree with DVK here.

While there are arguments showing that this might be a possibility, I strongly think that they cannot.

Here is my only argument: if it was possible, Draco wouldn't have had to work on the wardrobe for a whole year to repair it to find a way to get into Hogwarts.

I mean, if it was possible, surely the Death Eaters would have thought of it. They are not that stupid. And Draco was desperate to find a way to let the Death Eaters enter Hogwarts.

And they come from wealthy families with house elves of their own, it's not as if getting house elves is impossible for them.

So this is really it: if it was possible, I think this would make a major plot hole regarding the question "Why didn't the DEs apparate with house elves in HBP ?"

If you can prove me wrong though, I'd gladly discuss.

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    Throughout the series it's been discussed how wizardkind in general were woefully ignorant of the ways and magic of house elfs (e.g. Voldemort's expecting Kreacher to die in the cave). It seems perfectly logical to me that even if it was possible for house elves to help, it would never occur to the death eaters to ask/order them to.
    – chama
    Commented Jul 10, 2013 at 13:43
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    That is indeed a good argument... I always underestimate the pride of people in general. Yet, seeing how desperate is Drago, one would think he would try everything, wouldn't he ?
    – Kalissar
    Commented Jul 10, 2013 at 13:52
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    The house elves were such non-entities in the wizarding world, that it's possible that he wouldn't think of it even in his desperation.
    – chama
    Commented Jul 10, 2013 at 13:57
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    Forget "underestimating" - they (including Draco) most likely simply wouldn't know. Remember that Harry only found out because Dobby did it in front of him. Commented Feb 19, 2014 at 15:58
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    Also don’t forget that the Trio (who in general view house-elves rather kindly) were not even aware of the fact that Hogwarts has house-elves until their fourth years. Someone like Draco who grew up with a house-elf and treated him as though he weren’t there would not be all that likely to know of their presence unless someone happened to have told him at some point. Commented Apr 28, 2016 at 19:41

They cannot.

‘Dobby must go!’ breathed the elf, terrified; there was a loud crack, and Harry’s fist was suddenly clenched on thin air. He slumped back into bed, his eyes on the dark doorway to the hospital wing as the footsteps drew nearer. - Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

As we can see, Harry was clutching Dobby as Dobby Disapparated from Hogwarts - and yet, Harry did not Side-Along Disapparate with him. The charms on Hogwarts must be much stronger than the ones cast on the Malofy's basement.

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    This is spot on !!
    – Anu7
    Commented Dec 21, 2016 at 11:08
  • Or maybe Dobby didn't go directly to Hogwarts, or simply chose not to take Harry with him? He could bewitch the passage to Platform 9.75, after all. This is not evidence, this is simply an effect. Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 12:52
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    Seems to me that Dobby was trying to escape from, not only the situation, but also Harry. As @Gallifreyan said, he chose not to tale Harry with him. Why would he take Harry? I can't see a reason for him to have done so. Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 13:50
  • Humans can't choose who apparates with them, and there seems to be no indication that house-elves are different, beyond bypassing wards (and more power). Also, JKR wrote on her website that some creatures can't be moved by apparition, so it's reasonable that spells can make a human unable to be side-along apparated.
    – user71425
    Commented Sep 25, 2021 at 22:58

I would assume that the answer here is that wizard's magic isn't strong enough to prevent elves apparating where and when they want to, but there may be very powerful, and difficult to perform, charms that specifically prevent side-along apparition of wizards. Yes, the Malfoys are rich, etc, but that doesn't necessarily make them capable of the most difficult of magic. The defences of Hogwarts have been created and applied by the best minds over a thousand years.

In the three cases of Elf side-along apparition (Kreatur in HBP, Dobby in DH from the Manor and Kreatur from Grimauldin DH), they were current (in the case of Hogwarts and Grimauld) or former (the Manor) "employees". This may, like the Fidelious charm, have provided a loop-hole.

  • Good Answer @Adie! One improvement I'd suggest: I'm not very quick with the names of characters in Harry Potter; could you put those in full form, instead of using those abbreviations? Commented Jul 9, 2014 at 13:20

Also, other house elves may be able to detect that sort of apparition, possibly even block it. So the Hogwarts house elves may be able to block Death Eater's house-elves from bringing their masters. Not to mention they would raise an alarm immediately, completely ruining the effect of surprise.

The unofficial reason is probably that elf magic being absurdly powerful would completely unravel every single plot-line in the HP universe. After all, why not send a house-elf commando to abduct Harry from Hogwarts ?

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