Which of J.K. Rowling’s Characters Will Die?

In ten days, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, seventh and final book of the series written by J.K. Rowling, will be released. Miss Rowling has said that two of her characters will die in this book. Which will they be?

Those to be offed could be a couple of the villians, such as Voldemort and Bellatrix Lastrange. The character I expect to be killed, though, is Molly Weasley. There are nine people in the Weasley family–a lot of targets and all of them in mortal peril according to Mrs. Weasley’s clock. Eight of them are aligned in the battle against Voldemort and his followers, and the estranged son Percy, with his taste for blowing with the wind, could land in trouble as well.

Thus far, Molly’s husband, Arthur Weasley, was gravely injured by a Voldemort-possessed snake; their daughter Ginny was imperiled by one of Voldemort’s horcruxes surreptiously given her by the Death Eater Lucius Malfoy; their son Bill was disfigured by a werewolf aligned with Voldemort.

Since Voldemort’s return, Mrs. Weasley protectiveness of her family has been a passion. Anyone attacking her children or husband, if she is anywhere near, will have to go through her first. The very first chapter of the first Harry Potter book showed what the consequence of that is. Maybe the series will end where it began: Mrs. Weasley will sacrifice herself to deflect death from one of her family and in so doing will loose a power that will vanquish the Dark Lord. While Harry Potter is off chasing horcruxes, the real action will be in the Burrow.

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About John Mansfield

Mansfield in the desertA third-generation southern Nevadan, I have lived in exile most of my life in such places as Los Alamos, Baltimore, Los Angeles, the western suburbs of Detroit, and currently the northern suburbs of Washington, D.C. I work as a fluid dynamics engineer. I was baptized at age twelve in the font of the Las Vegas Nevada Central Stake Center, and on my nineteenth birthday I received the endowment in the St. George Temple. I served as a missionary mostly in the Patagonia of Argentina from 1985 to 1987. My true calling in the Church seems to be working with Cub Scouts, whom I have served in different capacities in four states most years since 1992. (My oldest boy turned eight in 2004.) I also currently teach Sunday School to the thirteen-year-olds. I hold degrees from two universities named for men who died in the 1870s, the Brigham Young University and the Johns Hopkins University. My wife is Elizabeth Pack Mansfield, who comes from New Mexico's north central mountains and studied molecular biology at the same two schools I attended. We have four sons, whose care and admonition, along with care of my aged father, require much of Elizabeth's time. She currently serves the Church as Mia-Maid advisor, ward music chairman, and choir director, and plays violin whenever she can. One day, I would like to make shoes.

36 thoughts on “Which of J.K. Rowling’s Characters Will Die?

  1. My daughter has a theory that Neville will die. She had done a lot of thinking about the seventh book and made me buy advance copies as well as advance tickets to the movie, which opens today.

    We agree your Molly scenario may make sense also — the parallelism of Molly dying to protect her family and the Potters’ death in the beginning is interesting.

    My daughter and I disagree on the situation with Dumbledore — I think he may still be alive, and she definitely feels he is dead and gone but maybe like Yoda his “spirit” will reappear.

  2. Re 2:

    Has she really? Because the death seemed a little anticlimactic. I assumed that was because it was a fake death worked out by Snape and Dumbledore. Where can I go to find out where she said that? It could very well ruin my day.

    As for the question in the post, I think Harry dies largely because Rowling doesn’t want anyone else writing sequels.

  3. With regard to Dumbledore’s possible return to life, I think Rowling doesn’t want to cheapen the notion of death. If Dumbledore can come back to life, then so can Diggory (killed by Voldemort at the end of “Goblet of Fire”) or even Harry’s parents. I think she’s highly reluctant to mess with the finality of death. There must still be rules in works of fantasy, and I think this is probably one of hers: dead is dead (not that she has followed that rule in the case of Voldemort, however). Maybe her rule is more along the lines of “good people can die, but evil lives forever”.


  4. Clearly, Harry himself is the last horcrux. If Rowling wants to save Harry alive, she has to come up with a plausable way to remove the chunk of Voldemort’s soul from Harry, without destroying that horcrux. IMO, it will be tough to do that without being pathetic.

    I’ve thought perhaps Mr. Weasley will be killed, but I like your reasoning about Mrs. Weasley, John.

    As I was watching a rebroadcast of the “Chamber of Secrets” film a few days ago, it occurred to me that Draco Malfoy (who showed some hints of conflicted conscience in book 6) could be forced into a showdown with his father, Lucius, and sacrifice himself for the cause.

  5. It was in an interview when she was with Stephen King and someone else where she said Dumbledore is really dead. There is a link to it at http://www.mugglenet.com. Click on the link that says “Everything you wanted to know about book seven”.
    Also, something people never pay attention to, when she did the interview in England that everyone got worked up about, she did not say that only two people would die. SHe said two people died that she did not originally plan to die. That means that there are probably others who will die.
    She has alluded to the afterlife so much that I think she is trying to bring out the point Dumbledore tried to teach Voldemort: There are worse things than death!!

  6. #11:
    Well, there you go. A muggle nuclear weapon is accidentally launched(probably as a result of Mr. Weasley’s careless fascination with muggle inventions…), scoring a direct hit on Hogwarts during that year’s huge billion-wizard-attended event. 90% of the wizarding world is instantly killed, with the few survivors becoming mutants and being forced to live underground. Within a few years, they’re all wearing facemasks, and the surface world is ruled by talking apes. 😉

  7. Clearly, Harry himself is the last horcrux.

    I have considered this, as well. However, having re-watched “Chamber of Secrets” the other day, it doesn’t make much sense to me that Voldemort (in the form of Tom Marvolo Riddle) would be so anxious for the basilisk to kill Harry if Harry really is a horcrux (as was Ginny’s book).

    Only a few more days until we know for sure.

  8. Many people bring up the “Harry is a Horcrux” theory. If you truly believe that, then tell me why Voldemort would keep trying to kill Harry? Why would he want to destroy part of himself?

  9. Re 13:

    JK Rowling is going to kill off John Irving in the last book? This *is* big news!

  10. I see your point, maren, but realize that horcrux or not, Harry is the single biggest threat Voldemort faces. Maybe Voldemort has thought he could spare one of seven, if the benefits of destroying Harry outweigh the risk.

  11. I honestly and truly think it would be awful if she has written Harry Potter’s death. I really would be concerned about all the kids who read those books. I think they might have a hard time with that.

  12. A theory I follow is that Harry is a Horcrux, but HWMNBN doesn’t know it.

  13. I think children have to face death in life, and I trust that if Harry dies, JK will have written it in such a way as to help people understand death. IT may be hard for them, but a good learning experience. There are plenty of children’s movies and books where people die. Read the last book of the chronicles of narnia. I personally do not think she will kill Harry, but if she does, I do not think it would be so horrible. There are worse things than death.

  14. Here’s the real big question. Is Dumbledore really dead? I reread the last two books last month. I think Dumbledore and Snape planned Dumbledore’s death and Snape isn’re really bad.

    Will Harry die? That’s what everyone thinks for the obvious reasons. I don’t think it will be the case though. I do think Ginny, Harry’s girlfriend will die. And I think Neville may die.

  15. The finality of death seems to be an important concept that Rowling is trying to communicate, and also that evil does real harm. Although there is evidence against it, I think Snape is the Dark Lord’s now.

    One thing I’ve wondered: At the end of Half Blood Prince, Harry Potter is completely outclassed by Snape, can’t do a thing to him, while Snape brushes off Potter with little effort. So, I don’t see how Potter will have any chance in his next encounter with Voldemort.

  16. One of the big three, Harry, Ron or Hermione is my guess. They would be the most climatic.

  17. Neville’s a goner. I’d put money on it.

    It’s going to be hard to get through the book before hearing about it somewhere though.

  18. Also remember that Harry saved Ron’s life in book 6 with the goat stomach stone thing.

    I think she will kill off Harry. Will keep someone from trying to write future books. Hero dead – series dead.

    I think Ginny will play a more role in this book, given the 7 generations without a girl and she’s the 7 kid in that generation thing…

    If Harry is a horcrux and LV doesn’t know it…then there would be 8. 7 is the powerful number – I don’t think that makes sense.

    Dumbledore is dead, but I think he’s painting will offer some insights to Harry in this book.

    Harry’s eyes (like his mothers) will pay an important role and someone who has not shown powers will suprise us (but not Petunia)…

    I get most this from MuggleNet – great site. Leaky Cauldron is a good one too.

  19. i personally don’t snape has any chance at all. if he’s on harry’s side LV will kill him if he’s on LVs side harry will kill him. actually i think harry might kill him either way!

  20. i also have wondered if dumbledore helps harry in the 7th book. He can’t come back to life but maybe he could give him advice by useing his portait in the headmasters office in hogwarts to talk him.

  21. With regard to Dumbledore’s possible return to life, if I recall correctly, and you guys can help me with this, didn’t Dumbledore twice tell Harry that nothing can bring people back from the dead? In book one, I thought Dumbledore told Harry that when Harry was in front of the mirror that showed him with his parents. Later, in book four, I thought Dumbledore told Harry that again when Harry was recovering in the hospital.

    With regard to both Harry and Voldemort dying, in book 5, when Harry fetches the prophecy, it says that neither can live while the other is alive. Not only does that seem to indicate that one can live quite fine without the other, if Voldemort and Harry’s “souls” are so intertwined that killing one would kill the other, why on earth would Voldemort seek to kill Harry?

    With regard to who may die, I’ve thought since book one that Dumbledore and Hagrid would eventually die. First, these are the two adults with whom we’ve bonded the most, so emotionally it would be the most powerful thing to do. Second, if Voldemort is vanquished in the end, it has to be Harry that does it, and how can he do it if Dumbledore is still around? And Hagrid, as Harry’s closest protector, will likely be on hand to be in the way of Voldemort vanquishing Harry. Also, once Ron, Hermione and Harry leave Hogwarts, doesn’t Hagrid’s character seem awfully lonely? I think Hagrid is the most likely death in book seven. The other major character who will likely die will be Voldemort.

    Keep in mind though, that J.K. Rowling never said two characters will die in book seven. She said AT LEAST 2 will die.

    With regard to Snape, no, he isn’t really bad. At Dumbledore’s urging, Snape killed Dumbledore so that Snape would be trusted enough by Voldemort to be in position to bring him down later.

    Dumbledore allowed himself to be martyred for the cause, believing that Harry had it in him (and was destined?) to defeat Voldemort in the end. The only life Dumbledore has now is the same as the previous headmasters: to hang out in paintings in the headmaster’s office.

  22. I think she will kill off Harry. Will keep someone from trying to write future books. Hero dead – series dead.

    Anybody who is really determined to write additional HP stories will find a way to do so: “Adventures With the Dursleys: The Lost Harry Potter Chronicles” (everything you ever wanted to know about what went on during the summers away from Hogwarts).

    Of course, given the prohibition against using magic away from Hogwarts, the summer chronicles might not end up being all that interesting…

  23. I agree with Mark. That is a pretty lame reason to get rid of Harry. The series could easily be continued without Harry. People would love to see Harry Potters world without him. What about following Ron and Hermione’s children? (assuming they live of course). Tons of people would read that.

    I’m personally banking on Snape being good, and that he had to kill dumbledork due to the circumstances, like Tom7 suggested. What I really would like to see however, is Draco helping Harry in some way. That would be cool too.

    I really hope they don’t kill one of the big three, or Ginny. Anyone else but those for, I’m cool with.

    I guess it won’t be long…

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