Why Did Voldemort Kill Harry’s Parents? What Motivated This Tragic Act?

Why did Voldemort Kill Harry’s parents? Learn the truth behind Lord Voldemort’s ruthless act as we unravel the mystery of why he targeted and killed Harry Potter’s parents, James and Lily. 

Why Did Voldemort Kill Harry’s Parents?

The Harry Potter story begins with Voldemort murdering Harry’s parents, James and Lily Potter. However, the reason behind this isn’t revealed until “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.”

Harry Potter, the famous wizard of the series, became well-known for his distinctive lightning bolt scar. This scar became a symbol both in the Wizarding World and in popular culture.

He acquired this scar on the night when he miraculously survived an assassination attempt by one of the most evil wizards in history.

What sets Harry apart is that he’s the only person known to have survived the deadly Avada Kedavra spell that Lord Voldemort used against him that fateful night. This extraordinary event earned him the nickname “The Boy Who Lived” and made him famous in the magical community.

Not only did Harry manage to survive, but on that same night, the 15-month-old infant also brought an end to Voldemort’s reign of terror. Sadly, Harry’s parents were killed by Voldemort before he targeted Harry.

So, why did Voldemort target Harry and murder his parents? The answer is both simple and complex: it was all because of a prophecy.

The Prophecy that Motivated Voldemort to Kill Harry’s Parents

Severus Snape informed Voldemort about a prophecy that predicted his downfall. Before Harry was born, Albus Dumbledore, the headmaster of Hogwarts, interviewed Sybill Trelawney for the Divination professor position at The Hog’s Head Inn. 

Initially unimpressed, Dumbledore witnessed something extraordinary as Trelawney had a true vision of the prophecy that revealed the cause of Lord Voldemort’s defeat. 

However, Snape, who was once a Death Eater in Voldemort’s inner circle, overheard part of the prophecy and shared it with his master before joining Dumbledore’s side. 

Voldemort, having heard only the final part of the prophecy, believed that Harry was destined to destroy him. As a result, he embarked on a mission to find and kill the baby Harry, considering him to be no threat yet. 

The prophecy contains important details: it states that Voldemort’s downfall will be brought about by a person born in July, whose parents had defied him three times. 

This individual possesses a power that Voldemort cannot comprehend. Additionally, it is Voldemort himself who will choose his adversary, and one of them will ultimately kill the other.

Why Voldemort Wanted to Kill Harry Potter

The prophecy is complex because it requires a unique form of self-fulfillment. Voldemort will personally designate the chosen one as his equal, which means that for the prophecy to come true, Voldemort himself will select his greatest adversary.

This holds great significance because it implies that Harry’s destiny is not determined by some external force, but rather by Voldemort’s own decision. Voldemort held a certain respect for the skills of Harry’s parents and considered their son to be a more formidable threat than Neville.

Harry’s parents were betrayed by Peter Pettigrew, who revealed their whereabouts to Voldemort. In response, Voldemort swiftly killed James Potter but offered Lily the choice to spare her own life. 

Lily’s selfless sacrifice shields Harry from the deadly Avada Kedavra curse, and in doing so, Voldemort inadvertently fulfills the prophecy by marking Harry as his equal with the iconic lightning-shaped scar. Moreover, this act bestowed upon Harry the abilities necessary to eventually overcome Voldemort.

Voldemort chose Harry because he recognized in him a reflection of the traits that were absent in Neville. Voldemort harbored a deep disdain for his parents due to his father being a Muggle and his mother being an unremarkable, in his eyes, pitiful individual. 

While Voldemort concealed his half-blood heritage from his acquaintances and followers, he saw in Harry’s Muggle-born mother a parallel to his power stemming from his shared half-blood status.

Final Thoughts

Voldemort picked Harry instead of Neville, convinced that Harry would be his ultimate downfall. As a result, James and Lily lost their lives while bravely trying to protect their son, who would ultimately bring an end to Lord Voldemort’s reign.