As referenced here, Kreacher was commissioned to drink the "drink of despair" in the Horcrux cave so Voldemort could put the locket in there. Why was the basin already filled with the drink of despair, and if that is known, who filled it? Obviously very few people knew of this cave besides Voldemort.

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    Is there a reason you don't think Voldemort filled it himself? I was under the impression the only reason he brought Kreacher was to test his defenses.
    – Dason
    Commented Jan 30, 2013 at 3:32

2 Answers 2


It was Voldemort himself who had filled the basin with magic potion. He wasn't clearing out the basin with Kreacher. He was merely testing his defenses.

As I have recalled, Kreacher was saying, "... and, he filled the potion AGAIN."

  • Seems reasonable, but isn't he just proving the defense is beatable?
    – scott.se
    Commented Jan 30, 2013 at 3:59
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    @scott.se Yes, it was beatable but only by Dumbledore type wizards. Here's the setup: After drinking the potion, you'll become thirsty. And, when you touch the water, you'll be dragged by Inferni to death (the same thing happened to Regulus Black, the original master of Kreacher)..
    – user931
    Commented Jan 30, 2013 at 5:49
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    Also when Voldemort goes to check-up on the Locket in DH, there was a line like (paraphrasing) 'the liquid turned clear... and he saw the locket was gone'. So he had full power over the liquid.
    – Möoz
    Commented Mar 20, 2014 at 20:30

The Dark Lord would have filled the basin with potion himself.

It’s almost certainly the Dark Lord himself who’d originally filled the basin with the potion, before bringing Kreacher to the cave. When Kreacher tells Harry how the Dark Lord took him to the cave, Harry figured this was how the Dark Lord had tested his defenses around his Horcrux.

“This, then, was how Voldemort had tested the defences surrounding the Horcrux: by borrowing a disposable creature, a house-elf …

‘There was a b – basin full of potion on the island. The D – Dark Lord made Kreacher drink it …”
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 10 (Kreacher’s Tale)

The Dark Lord is able to refill the basin with the same potion after Kreacher drank it. This at least indicates that he knew exactly what potion was in the basin so he could put the same thing back. It’s also unlikely that there would have just happened to be a potion in the basin already in the cave that was coincidentally so useful to protect the Dark Lord’s Horcrux that he chose to put it back.

“Kreacher drank, and as he drank, he saw terrible things … Kreacher’s insides burned … Kreacher cried for Master Regulus to savealready in the cave him, he cried for his Mistress Black, but the Dark Lord only laughed … he made Kreacher drink all the potion … he dropped a locket into the empty basin … he filled it with more potion.”
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 10 (Kreacher’s Tale)

The Dark Lord already had set up the other defenses around his Horcrux in the cave when he took Kreacher into it - he’d already put the Inferi in the lake.

“Kreacher needed water, he crawled to the island’s edge and he drank from the black lake … and hands, dead hands, came out of the water and dragged Kreacher under the surface …”
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 10 (Kreacher’s Tale)

Therefore, it’s almost certainly the Dark Lord himself who put the potion in the basin when building the defenses around his Horcrux.

  • Maybe bold the part about “he filled it with more potion” to draw attention to the key part? Commented Sep 8, 2018 at 13:38

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