Harry was never a Horcrux of Voldemort  

I have heard this line on SE a lot & also vaguely read about that discussion.

My question is if Harry was not Voldemort's Horcrux & if all the other 6 (5 inanimate objects & Nagini) were destroyed beyond repair & Harry tries to Avada Kedavra Voldemort, would he die? What would happen to Voldemort's soul inside Harry.

I've asked this question keeping in mind Harry isn't a technical Horcrux but only a part of Voldemort's soul is in him. So can Voldemort resurrect from this soul?

If its a duplicate, please mention the relevant discussion link in the comments

4 Answers 4


It's important to note that a Horcrux isn't a method of resurrection. It is instead a method of preventing death in the first place. This is what Professor Slughorn tells a young Voldemort about Horcruxes in Half-Blood Prince:

"Well, you split your soul, you see," said Slughorn, "and hide part of it in an object outside the body. Then, even if one's body is attacked or destroyed, one cannot die, for part of the soul remains earthbound and undamaged. But of course, existence in such a form..."
Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 23 - Horcruxes

Harry isn't a true Horcrux, but he does have some of the characteristics of one. Most importantly he's a vessel that contains a part of Voldemort's soul, keeping it "earthbound and undamaged." I suspect that for as long as that were the case Voldemort would not be able to die, even if the other six Horcruxes he intentionally created were destroyed; Dumbledore certainly seemed to think so, at the very least.

  • I didn't imply that the soul in a horcrux takes a body form after the death of its owner. The original soul resurrects if a horcrux is made. So, since Harry isn't a technical horcrux(no magic performed), if all 6 horcruxes are destroyed, but a part is still inside Harry as a parasite, will the original Voldemort's soul resurrect after he's Avada Kedavra-ed? Or he's gone for good? Sep 20, 2013 at 16:24
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    @KharoBangdo There is no death of a horcrux's owner, that's the point. Your body is destroyed, but you do not die. In order to be resurrected you have to be dead, the word means "restore (a dead person) to life". Sep 20, 2013 at 17:34
  • 1
    By death i mean death of the body. By resurrection, i mean resurrection of the destroyed body. I wasn't talking about soul Sep 21, 2013 at 4:28
  • "A vessel that contains part of Voldemort's soul" is a horcrux. How is harry not a horcrux?
    – anduril
    Jul 3, 2014 at 20:15
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    @anduril Not exactly. Slytherincess' answer has the relevant quotes from JK Rowling on this. There are additional requirements that are required to truly be a Horcrux which Harry doesn't meet. Jul 3, 2014 at 20:22

The relevant answer is just the last sentence of Anthony Grist above:

While the fact of whether or not Harry was something called a Horcrux has not been made clear in the books and had to be explained later by JKR, we can be (or rather JKR has made it) 100% sure that Voldemort could have "resurrected" from that part of his soul in Harry (if he could realise this in limbo later and get someone to perform the necessary magic). Dumbledore would not have risked Harry letting himself killed just for the sake of making sure this part of soul is gone, unless he was pretty sure of that. He expresses his conviction in the most certain terms in his message to Harry he delivers to Snape:

"And while that fragment of soul, unmissed by Voldemort, remains attached to and protected by Harry, Lord Voldemort cannot die.” - Deathly Hallows, Chapter 33, The Prince's Tale.

That Harry is tethered to life by Voldemort's body is one of Dumbledore's most educated inferences based on his deep understanding of magic; he has no precedences or recorded theory to be sure, unlike the case for Horcruxes.

In my opinion, the whole integrity of (at least the final part of) Book 7 shall be questioned if we question this strategic importance of the piece of Voldemort's soul in Harry. The whole series has been, in a sense, planned to culminate in Harry's self-sacrifice amounting to his being the Master of Death, and all this would be pointless, if Voldemort could not have resurrected from the part of soul in Harry (though he doesn't know that at any point of his life).


Harry is not a Horcrux in the traditional sense, because he was not created with the traditional spell and process used to create one. But he does seem to have the same function as one: the unique circumstances of his first encounter with Voldemort created what amounts to a Horcrux by unorthodox means.

I'm speculating here, but it may be that Avada Kedavra always works this way. Doubtless it is as harmful to the caster's soul as any other act of murder, but it may in fact transfer a small bit of the caster's soul to the victim as a side effect of the process. The reason this was never noticed before is that under ordinary circumstances, the newly-Horcruxed victim dies, so the soul fragment just goes right back to its owner, and it all happens so fast that the caster never feels anything amiss. But Harry lived, so the soul-fragment stuck.


Yes, the piece of soul in Harry should still tie the Dark Lord to life.

The point of a Horcrux is to keep a piece of the soul earthbound, so the rest of the soul would be tethered to life even if the body is killed. Usually, removing the piece of soul requires a spell, but there’s no reason that an unintentionally removed piece wouldn’t work the same way - it’s having the soul piece outside the body that tethers the rest of the soul to life.

“Well, you split your soul, you see,’ said Slughorn, ‘and hide part of it in an object outside the body. Then, even if one’s body is attacked or destroyed, one cannot die, for part of the soul remains earthbound and undamaged. But, of course, existence in such a form …”
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 23 (Horcruxes)

The additional enchantments on Horcruxes, other than the spell to seal the soul into the object, are to protect it from being destroyed. These spells aren’t what makes the Horcrux tie its creator to life. They don’t have anything to do with the function of the Horcrux, they’re just to strengthen it.

“So does it say how to destroy Horcruxes in that book?’

‘Yes,’ said Hermione, now turning the fragile pages as if examining rotting entrails, ‘because it warns Dark wizards how strong they have to make the enchantments on them.”
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 6 (The Ghoul in Pyjamas)

Harry being a living person rather than an inanimate object like Horcruxes typically are wouldn’t stop the piece of soul in him from tying the Dark Lord to life, either. Living creatures can be used as Horcruxes, so the piece of soul being in a person wouldn’t stop it from working.

“The snake?’ said Harry, startled. ‘You can use animals as Horcruxes?’

‘Well, it is inadvisable to do so,’ said Dumbledore, ‘because to confide a part of your soul to something that can think and move for itself is obviously a very risky business.”
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 23 (Horcruxes)

In addition, Dumbledore is sure that piece of soul in Harry would ensure the Dark Lord couldn’t die.

“Part of Lord Voldemort lives inside Harry, and it is that which gives him the power of speech with snakes, and a connection with Lord Voldemort’s mind that he has never understood. And while that fragment of soul, unmissed by Voldemort, remains attached to, and protected by Harry, Lord Voldemort cannot die.”
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 33 (The Prince’s Tale)

With the research Dumbledore has done into Horcruxes, it seems very unlikely he’d be wrong about this, and it’s supported by what’s known about Horcruxes and how they work.

While it’s there, ’killing’ the Dark Lord would just disembody him.

Since it would likely keep the Dark Lord tied to life, any attempt to kill the Dark Lord while his soul piece was still in Harry would likely just rip him from his body, like the rebounding Killing Curse did. He’d still be alive, though without a body and in spirit form again - but he wouldn’t truly be dead.

“Aaah … pain beyond pain, my friends; nothing could have prepared me for it. I was ripped from my body, I was less than spirit, less than the meanest ghost … but still, I was alive. What I was, even I do not know … I, who have gone further than anybody along the path that leads to immortality. You know my goal – to conquer death. And now, I was tested, and it appeared that one or more of my experiments had worked … for I had not been killed, though the curse should have done it.”
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 33 (The Death Eaters)

Therefore, once the soul piece remained alive in Harry, it’d be impossible to truly kill the Dark Lord.

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