It is explained here that Prof. Dumbledore tried to use the Resurrection Stone to see his family again. Albeit in his haste, he gets struck by the curse.

Later, Dumbledore still wears the ring, with the Resurrection Stone still on it:

and Harry noticed a ring on his uninjured hand that he had never seen Dumbledore wear before: It was large, rather clumsily made of what looked like gold, and was set with a heavy black stone that had cracked down the middle. Slughorn’s eyes lingered for a moment on the ring too, and Harry saw a tiny frown momentarily crease his wide forehead.
-Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter Four (Horace Slughorn).

There are other references to Dumbledore still possessing the ring/Stone.

We know also that the Stone seems to work fine, since Harry uses it in Deathly Hallows.

So, is there any evidence anywhere that Dumbledore did use the Stone after the Curse and before bequeathing it to Harry?

3 Answers 3


I don’t think this is stated explicitly in the books, but there are fairly strong hints that Dumbledore didn’t try to use the Stone again.

When he explains the Hallows to Harry in the “limbo” at the end of the final book, he talks about how he was “unworthy” to use the Stone. This is the passage:

After another short pause Harry said, “You tried to use the Resurrection Stone.” Dumbledore nodded.

“When I discovered it, after all those years, buried in the abandoned home of the Gaunts — the Hallow I had craved most of all, though in my youth I had wanted it for very different reasons — I lost my head, Harry. I quite forgot that it was now a Horcrux, that the ring was sure to carry a curse. I picked it up, and I put it on, and for a second I imagined that I was about to see Ariana, and my mother, and my father, and to tell them how very, very sorry I was…”

“I was such a fool, Harry. After all those years I had learned nothing. I was unworthy to unite the Deathly Hallows, I had proved it time and again, and here was final proof.

Deathly Hallows, chapter 35 (King's Cross)

This seems to be genuine contrition and regret on Dumbledore’s part. Unlike many people, Dumbledore seems to set store by one’s “worthiness” to use the Hallows, and if he really recognised that he was unworthy to use it, then he would not do so.

Then later, he talks about using the Stone as a potential action, rather than something he actually did:

“Maybe a man in a million could unite the Hallows, Harry. I was fit only to possess the meanest of them, the least extraordinary. […] The stone I would have used in an attempt to drag back those who are at peace, rather than to enable my self-sacrifice, as you did. You are the worthy possessor of the Hallows.”

Deathly Hallows, chapter 35 (King's Cross)

Both of these suggest to me that he didn’t try to use the Stone again.

As you point out, the Stone worked normally after it was detached from the ring, so I think it was self-control that kept him from using it, rather than any magical defence.

  • 1
    He should have dislodged the Stone from the ring before using it; in any case the stone would have to be turned over three times for it to work - simply putting on the ring wouldn't have done anything.
    – cst1992
    Apr 4, 2016 at 11:25

He realized he was unworthy to posess the Hallows. This is why he gives Harry the invisibility cloak. Also reference the mirror of Erised sequence, when he shows empathy for Harry wanting to see his family, but says he sees himself with socks... So either he is now truly seeing that (after abandoning the ring-as-hallow power after his run-in wih the ring-as-Horcrux) and the desire is gone, or he is dissimulating.

  • The fact that dumbledore could also potentially "see" his sister in the mirror, if that desire was still primary, means he did not have a lingering need to use the ring. He was finally able to bury his ghosts. He died knowing that arianna's death was not his fault, but embraced the fact that his early decisions mapped the person he became, and could not be responsible for too much power.
    – Drangiana
    Jan 11, 2015 at 9:14

Dumbledore used the Resurrection Stone and put it in the snitch that Harry first caught at Hogwarts against Slytherin. Dumbledore knew that this would be given to Harry in his will and that no-one would know of its huge importance! He did not use the Resurrection Stone to bring anyone back from the dead that he loved like his sister Ariana ,for example, because he already knew that it turns the dead crazy when they're brought back to life (reference in HP and the Deathly Hallow part 1) he only gave it to harry because he knew that Harry was to die at the hands of Voldemort and that it must be Harry to kill Voldemort in the end! Dumbledore didn't use the stone on himself either he decided to 'move on' in limbo and go to the dead distant land of no return! He did not use the Resurrection stone! The only 2 I know who did was the Perverell brother and Harry. I may be wrong?

  • 1
    Quite wrong. See the question linked in the OP's question. Also, AFAIK, the stone didn't turn anyone crazy, and it doesn't return anyone to life anyway - just makes the incorporeal copies of a dead person.
    – Izkata
    Jul 24, 2014 at 23:42

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