From HP Wikia's "Horcrux" article:

J. K. Rowling revealed in Pottermore that Prof. Quirinus Quirrell served as a temporary Horcrux when Voldemort's soul possessed his body during Harry Potter's first year at Hogwarts. (source: Pottermore reveals Professor Quirrell's history & connection to Lord Voldemort)


Seeing how at that point Quirrell was inhabited by the "main" fragment of Voldemort's soul (and that fact was something 100% clear and obvious from "HP&SS" book), does the statement above mean that somehow there actually were *two fragments of it in Quirrell, one "main" and one "Horcrux"?* If not, then what's the "reveal" part?

4 Answers 4


SCREENSHOT - Pottermore - Professor Quirrell Pottermore SPOILERS, obviously. NOTE: To best view this screenshot, you'll want to save it to your computer and view it there. The actual image is 1920x1000 px. Flickr limits the display size of pictures and it's hard to read easily just by viewing it on Flickr.

SPOILERS FOR POTTERMORE Anyhow, here's the reveal in question:

While Quirrell did not lose his soul, he became completely subjugated by Voldemort, who caused a frightful mutation of Quirrell's body: now Voldemort looked out of the back of Quirrell's head and directed his movements, even forcing him to attempt murder. Quirrell tried to put up feeble resistance on occasion, but Voldemort was far too strong for him.

Quirrell is, in effect, turned into a temporary Horcrux by Voldemort. He is greatly depleted by the physical strain of fighting the far stronger, evil soul inside him. Quirrell’s body manifests burns and blisters during his fight with Harry due to the protective power Harry's mother left in his skin when she died for him. When the body Voldemort and Quirrell are sharing is horribly burned by contact with Harry, the former flees just in time to save himself, leaving the damaged and enfeebled Quirrell to collapse and die.

I think your question is open to interpretation, actually. We know that during SS/PS, Voldemort was not corporeal, hence him needing Quirrell's body. I suppose I see Voldemort at that point as some kind of entity that retained Voldemort's essence and his soul. If one were to read the Pottermore text literally, then it's "soul," singular.

However, jumping forward to the later books, we learn that Voldemort rendered his soul very unstable by the sheer amount of Horcruxes he had created. He lost control of his soul (for lack of a better way of putting it) when he attempted to kill Harry, and that rogue piece of Voldemort's soul detached itself and transferred to Harry, making Harry a Horcrux.

Is it possible that what soul that remained in Voldemort was so unstable that perhaps it wasn't all in one piece, or perhaps it was cycling between states of being one unstable piece of soul and being fragmented? Maybe. It might be like taking apart an orange, segment by segment, and then trying to put the orange back together again. The orange may be back in its original shape, but its no longer strong like it was before it was segmented. It's not fully intact and if you leave it sitting there long enough, eventually it's going to somehow fall apart or shift or collapse because it no longer has the connections that held the segments together. No matter how many times you reshape the orange and put it back together, it's going to fall apart again. Sorry if this is a bad analogy.

I think that if Voldemort's soul was unstable enough that it could have been at times fractured, then yes it's possible that Quirrell's body housed more than one Horcrux piece of Voldemort's soul at some point.

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    'If one were to read the Pottermore text literally, then it's "soul," singular.' - uh... are you implying that Quirrell might have house ALL the united pieces of V's soul? I don't think that's the case. Or are you saying it house the remaining chunk BUT it's possible that remaining chunk splintered further INSIDE Quirrell? Jan 6, 2012 at 16:52
  • Sorry I was unclear. I meant the latter. Just an idea, though, a postulation. Waxing philosophical, I suppose :) Jan 6, 2012 at 16:56
  • @Slytherincess Voldermort was unstable (mentally as well as in soul) but I think he was going to make a 7th horcrux out of the murder of Harry, James or Lily anyway (Dumbledore mentions it) so his soul is prepared to break and so when the body was destroyed the soul split. Feb 13, 2016 at 21:42
  • @Bellerophon I don't think he was going to make a 7th horcrux. He was there to kill Harry to make the prophecy not come true. Can you please tell me where exactly Dumbledore mentions that Voldemort would have attempted another horcrux creation after killing the Potter family?
    – Matte
    Apr 13, 2019 at 18:37

No, I'm pretty sure she meant a "horcrux" as in a physical object holding a piece of his soul, in this case it just happened to be the main part.

  • But then, what's the "reveal" part regarding pottermore? In this reading, pretty much anyone with IQ more than Crabbe's would figure out Quirrell was a temporary Horcrux after reading HP7. Jan 6, 2012 at 16:49
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    @DVK I suspect it's more a "pointed out"/"confirmed" than "revealed", and just worded that way because it's a wiki. I can't access the source as I don't have (or particularly want) an account there to see, though.
    – Kevin
    Jan 6, 2012 at 16:57
  • 1
    Crabbe's IQ aside, there was massive debate in HP fandom about whether Quirrell was actually a Horcrux or not, even after book seven was published. I'd call it more a confirmation than a reveal. Jan 6, 2012 at 16:58
  • @Kevin - if you do want to see the source, I put a link to a screenshot in my answer. Just an FYI. :) Jan 6, 2012 at 17:00
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    I guess I must be thicker than Crabbe, because I hadn't considered that Quirrell might have been a Horcrux - it makes sense, but it doesn't necessarily follow since it could be considered a straight possession.
    – HorusKol
    Jan 6, 2012 at 21:42

The whole story with Quirrell happened long before Horcruxes were revealed. I would simply take that as clarification as to how Voldemort and Quirrell were merged.


Quirrell held the Dark Lord’s main soul.

Though there was a piece of the Dark Lord’s soul in Quirrell, it wasn’t a separate split-off piece, it was his main soul - the part that was in his regenerated body and had hidden in the forest.

“But firstly, no, Harry, not seven Horcruxes: six. The seventh part of his soul, however maimed, resides inside his regenerated body. That was the part of him that lived a spectral existence for so many years during his exile; without that, he has no self at all. That seventh piece of soul will be the last that anybody wishing to kill Voldemort must attack – the piece that lives in his body.”
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 23 (Horcruxes)

The Dark Lord possessed Quirrell, meaning his main soul was inside Quirrell, sharing his body.

“Oh, he seemed the very chance I had been dreaming of … for he was a teacher at Dumbledore’s school … he was easy to bend to my will … he brought me back to this country, and after a while, I took possession of his body, to supervise him closely as he carried out my orders.”
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 33 (The Death Eaters)

There’s nothing that implies Quirrell had more than one piece of the Dark Lord’s soul in him - it seems most likely to be just the Dark Lord’s main one that possessed him.

“The servant died when I left his body, and I was left as weak as ever I had been,’ Voldemort continued.”
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 33 (The Death Eaters)

There was nothing that had happened to split the Dark Lord’s soul further between his hiding in the forest and his possession of Quirrell, so it’s very unlikely that he’d have a separate, additional piece of soul in Quirrell as well as his main soul possessing him.

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