21

I’ve found him!’ [Harry] whispered. ‘I’ve found Flamel! I told you I’d read the name somewhere before, I read it on the train coming here – listen to this: “Professor Dumbledore is particularly famous for his defeat of the dark wizard Grindelwald in 1945, for the discovery of the twelve uses of dragon’s blood and his work on alchemy with his partner, Nicolas Flamel”!’

Philosopher's Stone - page 160 - Bloomsbury - chapter 13, Nicolas Flamel

Are any of the twelve uses of dragon's blood known? If so, what are they?

I'm looking for a canon-based answer (Harry Potter novels, the three supplemental books, JKR interviews, or Pottermore) and do not prefer an answer from the HP Wikia or the Wikipedia.

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    Yes. (The inherent problem with yes or no questions). – Jack B Nimble Oct 18 '12 at 16:47
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    @JackBNimble - May I offer you a glass of lukewarm unicorn blood? (This is also a yes or no question) ;) – Slytherincess Oct 18 '12 at 17:52
16

As @Dason said, from an interview we know one use is an "oven cleaner", and another is apparently "spot remover" (these seem similar enough to maybe be grouped into one "use" as "cleaner")

Another use that we know of from The Order of the Phoenix is to aid in healing:

“You’re not going to eat that, are you, Hagrid?” said Ron, leaning in for a closer look. “It looks poisonous.”

“It’s s’posed ter look like that, it’s dragon meat,” Hagrid said. “An’ I didn’ get it ter eat.”

He picked up the steak and slapped it over the left side of his face. Greenish blood trickled down into his beard as he gave a soft moan of satisfaction.

“Tha’s better. It helps with the stingin’, yeh know.”

A third use from The Half Blood Prince is apparently to mimic human blood:

"What kind of blood was that, incidentally?" asked Dumbledore loudly over the chiming of the newly unsmashed grandfather flock.

"On the walls? Dragon," shouted the wizard called Horace, as, with a deafening grinding and tinkling, the chandelier screwed itself back into the ceiling.

This last one is less obvious as to whether dragon blood itself has any properties that make it particularly useful for mimicking human blood, or whether it just happened to be what Horace had on hand at the moment. However, seeing as how disappointed he was in its loss due to it being so expensive, we can presume that it had some properties that made it useful for this particular task.

Another "use" is possibly as a means of channeling magic. Dragon heartstrings are used as the core of wands. While this isn't necessarily showing a use for dragon blood, the fact that the "heartstrings" are so close in proximity to the heart, and would presumably have similar properties to dragon's blood indicates that this could be a "use".

  • Another great answer! Thanks very much :) +1 – Slytherincess Oct 18 '12 at 17:49
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    Also, people sometimes put steak, from cows, on their faces to treat a black eye. So dragon blood may not be special in that regard. But good find either way. – psr Oct 18 '12 at 18:57
  • @psr Thanks for the reminder of Sandlot :). True, but in this case he specifically buys it for that reason, and says that it "helps with the stingin', yeh know", and the book specifically mentions the blood. – NominSim Oct 18 '12 at 19:32
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    Interesting to say the least that dragon blood is used to mimic human blood when in an earlier paragraph is said to be green. Not very "human-like". – Mainstroke Aug 21 '17 at 9:38
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The 12th use is "Oven Cleaner"

Q: What are the 12 uses for dragon's blood? -- Kelsey Biggar, age 9

A: I have a very good reason for not telling you -- the movie script writer wants me to give him that information for the film. But I can say that the 12th use is oven cleaner.

(Accio Quote Source)

Apparently one of the screenwriters for the movies, Steve Kloves, asked JKR about the 12 uses and let another one slip in the Los Angeles Times:

LAT: Do tell. She’s only mentioned “oven cleaner” in interviews.

SK: One is an oven cleaner, yes. Another is a spot remover. . . . It was really amazing.

(Source)

So at the moment it appears that "oven cleaner" and "spot remover" are the two known uses. This is not nearly as impressive as I was hoping for...

  • 3
    "409" has that wussy Dragon's blood beat by 397 uses – DVK-on-Ahch-To Oct 18 '12 at 16:16
  • Ooo, nice answer! Thanks :) +1 – Slytherincess Oct 18 '12 at 17:48
0

None of the twelve uses of dragon's blood are mentioned in the books. It also seems that no much thought went into dragon's blood

“It’s s’posed ter look like that, it’s dragon meat,” Hagrid said.

He picked up the steak and slapped it over the left side of his face. Greenish blood trickled down into his beard as he gave a soft moan of satisfaction. (OotP)

Later dragon's blood is supposed to look like human blood.

"What kind of blood was that, incidentally?" asked Dumbledore

"On the walls? Dragon," shouted the wizard called Horace (HBP)

So unless wizard's blood is the same green as the dragon's, it seems to be just an exotic element without much thought behind it.

It seems that the twelve uses of dragon's blood was just one of three item in Dumbledore's chocolate frog card, and the least important of the three. His defeat of Grindelwald is what makes him famous and influential, the reference to Flamel is essential for the stone, and dragon's blood seems to be just a filler.

Professor Dumbledore is particularly famous for his defeat of the Dark Wizard Grindelwald in 1945, for the discovery of the twelve uses of dragon's blood and his work on alchemy with his partner, Nicolas Flamel. (PS)

In the interview where the oven cleaner is mentioned, Rowling says

the movie script writer wants me to give him that information for the film. interview

So it seems someone asked exactly this question, what are the twelve uses of dragon's blood, and she invented twelve uses, although they weren't mentioned in the movies.

We know about oven cleaner and spot remover. Both are not spectacular uses, and as it is illegal to raise dragons, dragon's blood should be too rare to use it for such mundane tasks.

what might happen to Hagrid if anyone found out he was hiding an illegal dragon in his hut. (PS)

I haven't seen the other ten usesmentioned, but the most important use of dragon's blood should be to keep dragons alive.

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