For a fleeting instant, Harry thought he saw a gleam of something like triumph in Dumbledore's eyes. But next second Harry was sure he had imagined it, for when Dumbledore had returned to his seat behind the desk, he looked as old and weary as Harry had ever seen him.

This happens right after...

Dumbledore questions Harry about the events in the graveyard and the coming back of the Dark Lord.

Why would Dumbledore display a "gleam of triumph" in that specific moment? Is there any references in canon explaining what was going on in Dumbledore's mind?

  • 1
    How is this question that was asked on Nov 16 2012 a duplicate of another question that was asked on 2013? If anything it would be the other way around. I also find it concerning that the top answer on that other question happens to be by one of the closers.. Commented Mar 6, 2017 at 17:57
  • Probably because the other one has a bit more detail; in this case age is not as important. This doesn't reflect bad on your answer, it's just that both questions ask the same thing and have the same answer. If, however, you think that should not be the case, there's always Science Fiction & Fantasy Meta. Commented Mar 6, 2017 at 18:52
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    Do not mind for it that much but it raises the question of it being marked as duplicate by one of the posters on the other one and while I've known DVK generally to make an excellent work on all the questions he answers I still feel he (or anyone) should definitively "recuse" himself from judgement in those instances (I care very little as can be gathered by the fact this happened almost 3 years ago, but still...) Commented Mar 6, 2017 at 18:55

1 Answer 1


The answer is in the King's Cross chapter of Deathly Hallows. Therein, Dumbledore explains (or leads Harry to the understanding) that when Voldemort took his blood to regenerate himself, he tied Harry to life; while Voldemort still lived, Lily's protection lived on in Voldemort, tying Harry to life and this is why he didn't die when Voldemort "killed" him.

‘But if Voldemort used the Killing Curse,’ Harry started again, ‘and nobody died for me this time – how can I be alive?’
‘I think you know,’ said Dumbledore. ‘Think back. Remember what he did, in his ignorance, in his greed and his cruelty.’
‘He took my blood,’ said Harry.
‘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!’
‘I live ... while he lives? But I thought ... I thought it was the other way round! I thought we both had to die? Or is it the same thing?’


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