I've read a bunch of different answers here on the site already that are somewhat related to the question but I can't seem to find one that specifically addresses the question of why the "anchor" of Voldemort's blood connection with Harry (his blood containing the sacrificial protection bestowed upon Harry by Lily Potter) was even necessary in the first place in order to ensure Harry's survival against the Avada Kedavra curse that Voldemort hit him with in the Forbidden Forest in Deathly Hallows?

In the Forbidden Forest when Harry was facing Voldemort, didn't Harry's blood already contain Lily's sacrificial protection that already protected Harry once from Voldemort previously (at Godric's Hollow)? Wouldn't the blood that was already inside him be enough to protect him, once again, from any wrath that could have been thrown at him by Voldemort? Why, now, did he need some extra "tether" to life that would connect him to the mortal plane when his blood still contained Lily's protection against Voldemort?

Did the sacrificial protection in his blood somehow wane or weaken over time, or did it already serve its purpose once before and wasn't as strong as it was in the beginning when Voldemort first struck Harry with the Avada Kedavra curse at Godric's Hollow when Harry was a baby, therefore Harry now required "extra" protection via the existence of the blood protection in Voldemort?

  • @ carina, it was, but there was an extra bunch of mistakes that Voldy did to ensure his death. Dec 28, 2020 at 3:41
  • Mind elaborating on that? :)
    – carina
    Dec 28, 2020 at 5:05
  • @Randal'Thor eh I think that's kinda unrelated because the user in that post is asking about the 'anchor' of Voldemort rather than Lily's original sacrificial protection that lives on in Harry. But I suppose if that magic associated with the 'anchor' is long-lasting, then maybe Lily's original protection residing in Harry is long-lasting as well.
    – carina
    Dec 28, 2020 at 7:36
  • @carina, Lily's protection was still inside Harry, and the Dark Lord as well, but the part of the Dark Lord that was in Harry (the piece of his soul) was protecting him against any major harm. This includes the Killing Curse. When Voldemort tried to kill him, the Horcrux should theoretically have healed Harry, but I think 2 factors changed that, the first being that Voldemort was quite a skilled wizard. He did not hesitate at all to use the Killing Curse on Harry, and if we follow what Bella said, it could have been much more powerful. Dec 28, 2020 at 10:26

2 Answers 2


Theoretically, the original Sacrificial Protection would've been enough to shield Harry from that specific Killing Curse — the one cast by Voldemort in the Forbidden Forest. That protection never faded, and was still active in Harry's blood.

When Voldemort cast the Killing Curse in the Forbidden Forest, it didn't work — again — due to Lily's original protection. But apparently, the Killing Curse is so powerful that it has some effect, even with the Sacrificial Protection, thus destroying Voldemort's soul inside Harry and sending him to the "limbo".

  1. Did Harry die?

Rowling wrote this very carefully, so it could be read two ways. "Did he just go into a state of unconsciousness in which his subconscious tells him everything he needs to know? Dumbledore doesn't tell him anything he couldn't have figured out with some educated guesses." But in her mind, Harry entered a limbo between life and death, and faced a choice about which way to go.

She explains on her website that this encounter involves some very deep laws of magic, which Voldemort himself did not understand: "Having taken Harry's blood into himself, Voldemort is keeping alive Lily's protective power over Harry — except that the power of Lily's sacrifice is a positive force that not only continues to tether Harry to life, but gives Voldemort himself one last chance ... Voldemort has unwittingly put a few drops of goodness back inside himself; if he had repented, he could have been healed more deeply than anyone would have supposed. But of course, he refused to feel remorse." Also, since Voldemort is using the Elder wand, which actually belongs to Harry, neither the Cruciatus or the killing curse work properly. "The Avada Kedavra curse, however, is so powerful that it does hurt Harry, and also succeeds in killing the part of him that is not truly him, in other words, the fragment of Voldemort's own soul that is still clinging to his. The curse also disables Harry severely enough that he could have succumbed to death if he had chosen that path."

Rowling Answers 10 Questions About Harry

About Voldemort taking the blood... When Voldemort took onto him Harry's blood, he also took onto him the Lily's sacrifice. Thus, he tethered Harry to life as long as Voldemort was alive. He acted as a sort of Horcrux for Harry, allowing him to come back if Harry somehow was about to die or close to death.

‘Precisely!’ said Dumbledore. ‘He took your blood and rebuilt his living body with it! Your blood in his veins, Harry, Lily’s protection inside both of you! He tethered you to life while he lives!’

Rowling, J.K.. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (p. 579). Pottermore Publishing. Kindle Edition.

It is a bit confusing, to be fair, but it seems that the original Sacrificial Protection shielded Harry to some exent, but the Killing Curse is so powerful that it sent him to the limbo, and because Voldemort still had Lily's protection in his blood, Harry was able to come back to life.

  • I think that clears it up a bit more... so what you’re saying is that if Voldemort didn’t have Harry’s blood, then after Harry was hit with the killing curse in the forbidden forest, Harry would have been stuck in a limbo unable to come back to life even if wanted to? but that also leaves me with more questions because why wasn’t Harry stuck in a limbo the first time he was ever hit with the killing curse when he was a baby? what made the killing curse that much more powerful the second time around? it couldn’t have been the elder wand because it actually belonged to Harry, right...?
    – carina
    Dec 28, 2020 at 5:05
  • I don't have the answer for that. As you say, it doesn't make a lot of sense since the Elder Wand would refuse to harm Harry.
    – IloneSP
    Dec 28, 2020 at 22:40

I asked myself the same for a long time and I might have an answer now: it was essential, that Harry let himself be killed VOLUNTARILY. He wanted Voldemort to kill him. Maybe because of that, the blood protection wasn't "activated". If Voldemort would have killed Harry during the battle, and Harry would have fought back, the blood protection would have protected him. This could be the reason why it was so important that Voldemort had the blood protection of Harry inside him as well, almost like a "good Horcrux" for Harry that kept him alive as long the blood protection was alive in Voldemort.

  • Hi, welcome to SF&F. Do you have any evidence of this? Please note that answers are expected to have support, not just be personal theories.
    – DavidW
    Sep 5, 2021 at 12:18

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