‘Harry Potter’: The Real Reason Harry Survived in ‘Deathly Hallows’

Harry Potter, from the series that bears his name, is known for many things. He is known for his lightning bolt scar, for his loyalty and bravery, and for defeating Voldemort and saving the Wizarding World. Though Harry went through a lot, through it all he survived.

From the time when he was a baby, to every time as he grew older, Voldemort was never able to defeat Harry. Some of that was due to help from others while much of it was luck. Yet there’s one particular time that Harry was lucky to survive that might confuse some fans.

In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry goes to the Forbidden Forest to meet Voldemort. He goes willingly, ready to face the man who murdered his parents and tried to kill him numerous times. Voldemort almost succeeds in killing Harry this time, yet in the end, he can’t. Some fans might have wondered why that was.

It is a somewhat complicated explanation, so don’t worry if you didn’t understand it on your first read or watch of the series or even several reads or watches later. We’re here to explain what happened to you in a way you can understand.

Why did Harry survive Voldemort’s curse in the first place?

Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) at Deathly Hallows Part 2 premiere
Daniel Radcliffe at the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 premiere | Jim Spellman/WireImage

Every Harry Potter fan knows why Harry survived the first time Voldemort tried to kill him. It’s all thanks to his mother’s love. Yet that protection wore off once Harry reached the age of 17, which he had by the time he met Voldemort in the forest.

This time things are more complicated. His mother’s protection does play a role, which we’ll get into later. For now, all you need to know is that it had supposedly worn off when Harry met Voldemort again since he had reached the age of maturity in the Wizarding World and was no longer living with his Muggle aunt and uncle.

One of the complicated reasons why Harry survived has to do with the Elder Wand. Though Voldemort had the wand at the time, Harry was its true master. Therefore the wand wouldn’t allow Voldemort to kill Harry. When Voldemort tried, he instead destroyed the Horcrux that he never intended to make in Harry.

What happened when Voldemort tried to kill Harry?

Voldemort was not able to kill Harry because Harry was the true master of the Elder Wand. So, therefore, Harry survived. Instead, Voldemort unknowingly made himself more vulnerable by trying to kill Harry since instead, he destroyed the Horcrux inside Harry. Harry ended up going to a kind of in-between place, where he meets Dumbledore and Voldemort is temporarily knocked out as well.

Harry is also still somewhat protected by his mother’s love for him. And this is all Voldemort’s own doing. When he was rebuilding his body during Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, he used Harry’s blood to do so. Therefore, he took some of Lily’s protection into himself.

How did Harry survive again in ‘Harry Potter’?

Voldemort unknowingly made it so that Harry would always survive any of their encounters. As long as Voldemort himself survived, so would Harry. This is because Lily’s protection extended to Harry through Harry’s blood in Voldemort’s body.

Confusing, right? Yet it makes perfect sense that such a thing would happen. After all, Voldemort doesn’t understand love, having never really experienced it himself. He definitely doesn’t understand the kind of sacrifice that Lily made for her son and that Harry was willing to make for his friends.

Eventually, Harry defeated Voldemort once and for all. Voldemort again tried to kill Harry, not having learned his lesson the first time, and the curse rebounded on the Dark Lord himself due to the Elder Wand refusing to kill its true master. Harry survived yet again and all was well.