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I find it odd, and maybe it's more for the how the story was meant to play out, but surely once Harry knew his parents did not die in a car crash he would want to visit their graves? Not once in the 6 books before Deathly Hallows did he ask anyone about where they were laid to rest. Not even Hagrid after he gave Harry the photo album, not Sirius/Lupin/Weasleys/Dumbledore. Even if they had died in an accident surely there would be some burial place for them, although somehow I don't think the Dursley's would have let him visit.

Is there anything in canon/interviews that explain this and does anyone else find it strange?

  • But Harry did visit his parents graves? – Izumi-reiLuLu Mar 27 '14 at 10:13
  • thanks @Simon, yes i meant before Deathly Hallows___Edited now for that :D – BP_Phoenix Mar 27 '14 at 10:26
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    I'm pretty sure a lot of it had to do with the fact that before he was at Hogwarts he was living at the whims of the Dursleys. I doubt they made it a very high priority to visit, or even mention the Potters outside of how much of a burden they had put on Vernon and Petunia with leaving Harry to them. – Monty129 Mar 27 '14 at 12:21
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    For some people, graves don't mean much meaning. I have no interest in visiting the graves of my friends/relatives who have died. It's not a reflection of how I feel about those people, just that I can "speak to them" regardless of where I am, without traveling to some grave. – phantom42 Mar 27 '14 at 13:37
  • fair comment @phantom42, see my comment below :-) – BP_Phoenix Mar 27 '14 at 17:05
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They would have had graves however they died. It's probably a mixture of the Dursley's abject performance as guardians, keeping a key reference point for the right moment in the story, and Harry not needing to go from a personal point of view. Graves are just a marker. Harry had better sources of comfort once he realised the truth, such as their friends' memories and pictures that Hagrid gave him. Sorry I have no canon source for my opinion.

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    you make some valid points there @PomPom78, I think in the beginning it had more to do with the Dursleys but after going to Hogwarts and especially as he got older I would have thought he would've wanted to go to the place they were buried or at least his old house? from a plot point it doesn't work sure, but as a child who didn't know his parents (i am not counting his 12 months) I personally would be champing at the bit to know/see more after being told for 11 years they died in a car crash? – BP_Phoenix Mar 27 '14 at 17:02
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    I accept that but also Harry is still in danger so I suppose there may have been good reason I keep him away from places where he may be vulnerable...he has a rather busy term each year and when at the Durlseys during summer hols he is a virtual prisoner. It may have been a practical issue more than not 'wanting' to go on his part? – Pompom78 Mar 28 '14 at 9:43
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Protective magic

I think had he visited his parents before he would not be under the influence of the protective magic that had kept him safe all of those years prior, and it would have been harder to protect him form Voldemort had he visited his parents grave.

The protective magic that he had against Voldemort lasted under two condition.

  1. He was underage (<17)
  2. He continued to live at a place he c

an call home which belonged to a blood relative of his mother. (aka he was under his sister's protection)

When he is at Hogwarts he is under the protection of the school and Dumbledore along with the other professors (give or take a few).

Had he gone to his parents grave before the last book then I presume that he would have had difficulty getting there because:

  1. It would have been difficult, since his Aunt and Uncle were certainly not going to let him go out of the house. Or rather they certainly weren't going to accommodate him any further than they had to.
  2. The order would have probably not allowed him to.

And chances are he would have been out in the open and may have been vulnerable to attack by visiting his parents grave.

From a plot standpoint

Having never visited his parents grave before this point, builds up Harry's desire to visit his parents grave more and more. Leaving it as a possible destination that Dumbledore, or the Death Eaters wanted him to eventually end up in, in the hopes of passing on a message or capturing him.

From my perspective of Harry

The thought just hadn't occurred to him until now.

Up until he got to Hogwarts, he just thought his parents died in a car accident and he was fairly young. At that age I wouldn't have thought of visiting a grave.

And throughout the series he gets glimpses of their lives.

Philosophers Stone - Sees them in the mirror

Chamber of Secrets - He's more focused on his own self discovery, how is he like/unlike the dark lord

Prisoner - Spends the summer with his surrogate family (Weasley's) | He discovers his parent's killer/ oh no wait his parent's best friend and gets a figure in his life which can serve as his surrogate father. | Believes his father saved him from the dementor's kiss

Goblet - He is thrown into a situation in which Black helps harry potter along at times and he sees his parents at the end of the book again


Before this point he probably could have visited his parents. But the Dudsleys wouldn't have allowed it.

After the attack by the dementors at Pivot Drive however it's clear he would become much harder to protect, from there on out.

Order of the Phoenix - Feels left out and starts his own DA classes and creates a kind of new "family" with other students. See's his father as he was as a young man. and Looses his godFather

Half Blood Prince - Develops a sort of parent/son relationship with Dumbledore

Deathly Hallows - He lost a lot of his "family" ties, and ran out of resources. What is there left that he has yet to see. He didn't have to care so much about visiting his parents grave before because he had many new memories, new discoveries of who they were before he ever had to visit them.

His desire to see his parents now more than any other time is a culmination of how the events transpired. He didn't have the time to care before. He most certainly had the thought of visiting them before, but it wasn't until now where he is not taking classes, he has a lot of time where there is seemingly no progress being made in his quest, no hint as to where to go next. Where else does he have to go?

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    Can you give any kind of reference to where this idea comes from? – Monty129 Apr 10 '14 at 20:48

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