In the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Barty Crouch Jr. as Moody tries to get Harry to the cup first by taking out the other champions. He says that he stunned Fleur and then had Krum take out Diggory. This seems illogical, though, because Harry heard Cedric being attacked and tortured and saved him, which almost made Harry not touch the cup first.

Why not stun Krum and Diggory like he did to Fleur?

Why risk the sounds of torture? Why imperius Krum at all? I know that Crouch was evil and sadistic, but he was intelligent and needed the plan to go smoothly. It doesn't make sense.

4 Answers 4


My own belief is quite simple: Barty is a Death Eater. One of Voldemort's most fanatical, crazy followers (one of the top three, behind Voldy and Bellatrix). He does evil for the sake of evil, and he cannot think of evil that is not bombastic, not even if practicality would get him better results.

This is an issue that Voldy himself has, as pointed out by Dumbledore. The best example of course being the plan with the Cup being a PortKey and trying to humiliate Potter via wand duel versus just killing him immediately.

Forcing a person to torture another person is right up their alley.


Fairly sure there is no canon answer, but I can make a guess:

To punish Karkaroff for abandoning Voldemort.

When he’s interrogating Harry, he speaks of his contempt for people like Karkaroff (Death Eaters who abandoned the true cause), and how he wants to see them punished:

“I told you, Harry… I told you. If there’s one thing I hate more than any other, it’s a Death Eater who walked free. They turned their backs on my master when he needed them most. I expected him to punish them. I expected him to torture them.”

He likes taking matters into his own hands – the Dark Mark at the World Cup, or killing Harry when Voldemort failed. I think he’d have hated seeing Karkaroff so gleeful in the Tournament, and wanted to humiliate him. Having Krum use an Unforgivable Curse in the maze is a good way to do so.

Had all gone to plan, only Harry would have reached the Cup and been killed. Then, as a bonus, Cedric would have testified to Krum’s use of the Cruciatus Curse in the maze.

He’d find it difficult to prove he was acting under Imperius, so he’d face a life sentence in Azkaban (or the equivalent punishment in Bulgaria). His actions aren’t out-of-the-ordinary for a Triwizard Champion. As the Durmstrang Champion, it would embarrass Karkaroff, and raise serious questions about the suitability of teaching Dark Arts to teenagers.

  • 5
    But he would have to assume, that Karkaroff would bolt once the Dark Mark burned black - Voldemort resurrected successfully - which he of course did. His teaching days would have been over. On the other hand, it may very well have been the best way to further lay the blame on Karkaroff being the bad guy responsible for it all: His student tortures other champions and he bolts when HP disappears never to be found alive. Knowing Fudge as we do, the Ministry would have started a man-hunt on Karkaroff right away, and Voldy's return would be completely in secret...
    – BMWurm
    Aug 23, 2014 at 7:44

Torture is his thing. Don't forget that he was part of the group that cruciated the Longbottoms to insanity. Stunning was just too gentle for his likings.

And by having Krum do it, he could frame him for it.


There may have been several factors that led Crouch Jr. to not simply stun everyone.


Remember, the champions are inside the maze while Crouch is outside the maze:

"We are going to be patrolling the outside of the maze," said Professor McGonagall to the champions. "If you get into difficulty, and wish to be rescued, send red sparks into the air, and one of us will come and get you, do you understand?"

Presumably, then, he would only have the opportunity to stun a champion who happened to be near the outer wall where he was patrolling. If a champion was deep in the heart of the maze, Crouch would be unable to stun him/her.

This may in fact be supported by a close reading of Crouch's statement to Harry:

"I was patrolling around it, able to see through the outer hedges, able to curse many obstacles out of your way. I stunned Fleur Delacour as she passed. I put the Imperius Curse on Krum, so that he would finish Diggory and leave your path to the cup clear."

The phrase "able to see through the outer hedges" may indicate that even with the magic eye he could not see very deep into the maze. As such he would not have the opportunity to stun someone deep in the maze. The phrase "as she passed" is perhaps the most telling. Crouch may have only been able to stun Fleur because she passed, i.e. he was able to stun her because she entered into his range. If a champion stayed out of his range, though, he would not have been able to stun him/her.

Perhaps, then, Crouch was unable to stun Cedric because he did not get an opportunity to do so. When he got the opportunity to attack Krum he may have realized that it would be possible for Cedric to entirely avoid him and thus beat Harry to the cup. So Crouch had no choice but to use Krum to chase down Cedric, because he was unable to attack Cedric himself.

Thus, he stunned Fleur when he had the opportunity; he did not stun Cedric because he never got the opportunity; and he did not stun Krum because he needed to use Krum to attack Cedric.


The stunning spell is generally associated with a strong visual effect. When Dumbledore stunned Crouch:

"Stupefy!" There was a blinding flash of red light, and with a great splintering and crashing, the door of Moody's office was blasted apart —

When the Ministry wizards stunned Winky:

"STUPEFY!" roared twenty voices — there was a blinding series of flashes and Harry felt the hair on his head ripple as though a powerful wind had swept the clearing. Raising his head a fraction of an inch he saw jets of fiery red light flying over them from the wizards' wands, crossing one another, bouncing off tree trunks, rebounding into the darkness —

When the dragon keepers stunned the dragons:

"Stupefy!" they shouted in unison, and the Stunning Spells shot into the darkness like fiery rockets, bursting into showers of stars on the dragons' scaly hides —

This being the case, Crouch may have wanted to avoid stunning Krum and Cedric because the flashes of light would be very conspicuous. The Imperius Curse is never shown to be accompanied by such visual phenomena so it be much less likely that anyone would notice Crouch casting it. (As for why he stunned Fleur instead of using an invisible spell, perhaps he figured that one Stunning Spell would not be so conspicuous, or alternatively, perhaps he only realized how conspicuous it was because he stunned Fleur.)


If all three of the other champions were discovered stunned, it would be pretty obvious that something was going on, and suspicions would be raised. However, making Krum torture Cedric created a believable scenario where the champions fought each other. When the task would end and Cedric would say that Krum tortured him, suspicion would be deflected away from Crouch onto someone else. (Of course, there is the possibility that Krum would insist that he was Imperiused which might raise suspicions again, but perhaps Crouch considered that less likely.)


As to the point that stunning Cedric would have prevented him from almost touching the cup first, Crouch may not have felt that this was necessary. All Crouch needed was to keep the other champions out of the way for long enough to allow Harry to get to the cup. By the time Cedric was attacked Harry was nearly there. A short altercation would have been enough to ensure Harry's victory. Crouch probably did not count on Harry stopping to help Cedric (despite the fact that Harry stayed behind in the Second Task to save all the hostages).

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