19 Truly Sinister Voldemort Facts
How much do you know about his supreme evilness Lord Voldemort? We've got 19 spooky facts about the Dark Lord for you, so get ready to learn about some sinister schemes!
Voldemort's one of the most evil wizards of all time, and one of the biggest villains ever, but how much do you know about him? Here are 19 interesting facts all about the Dark Lord, his history, and how you're really supposed to say his name. And check out more Harry Potter facts here! How about some fun facts about the other Harry Potter villain, Draco aka Tom Felton? Or maybe you're ready for some fun facts all about the books within the wizarding world! You might even want to check out these fun Harry Potter film secrets!
1. He Had A Sad Childhood
If you thought shacking up with the Dursleys was bad, think again! Voldemort was brought up in a rather grim orphanage, where he seemed to spend most of his time bullying the other kids. He never knew his family and no one really seemed to care about him. It was only when he found out he was a wizard that he started to get excited about life!
2. His Family History Is Also Pretty Dark
His parents didn't love each other, his mum's family hated his dad, and the Gaunt family tree is chock full of dark wizards - he's even a descendent of Salazar Slytherin, and if that's not a bad sign, we don't know what is! His dad, a muggle, seemed like a bit of a rude snob, but that's nothing on the actual murderers on his mum's side!
3. His Name Has An Interesting Meaning
'Voldemort' has a few hidden meanings - it's partly from the French for death 'Mort', whilst 'vol' can mean 'flight or 'theft', and 'de' means of - so his name literally names stealing death, which is what he does! His real name, Tom Riddle, also hints that there's more to him than meets the eye.
4. He Was Born on the Last Day of the Year
Voldemort was born on 31st December, the last day of the year, exactly six months after Harry's birthday (although they're obviously not the same age) This makes him the mirror of Harry, who was born in summer. He was born in a gloomy, dying light, and it shows! We get it, it's difficult having your birthday so close to Christmas!
5. He Went to School With Hagrid
As The Chamber of Secrets reveals, Voldemort was actually at School at the same time as Hagrid, which makes them the same age! In his diary memory, which Harry get's sucked into, he's the one who gets Hagrid expelled, for having a pet giant spider. Which is mean, but also...look, would YOU want a big spider running about?
6. He Was Head Boy
He might seem like the sort of person who doesn't follow the rules, but turns out Voldemort at school was a total teachers pet. Not only was he a super high achiever who got great grades and charmed his professors, he was also head boy, which not only made him feel special, it also gave him a little bit too much power for his own good...
7. He's Very Old
According to official sources and the timeline of the book, Voldemort was born in the 1920s, making him a 70-something year old when Harry finally defeats him in the 90s. It's sort of hard to tell to be honest, he doesn't look great for his age, but then who would if you'd been resurrected out of random body parts? This makes him younger than Dumbledore who is about 100 during the time of the books! Wizards seem to age slower, it appears.
8. He's Been Played by Several Different Actors
Although Ralph Fiennes is probably best known for playing Voldemort, he wasn't the first! The first actor was Richard Bremmer, who plays him as the back of Quirrel's head. Then, in the second film, he's played by Christian Coulson as a school boy. In other flashbacks to Voldemort's youth, he's played by Frank Dillane and Hero Fiennes Tiffin, who is a relative of Ralph Fiennes! That's 5 different Voldemorts, phew!
9. He Doesn't Have A Patronus
A Patronus is a magical animal apparition that can be summoned to protect a wizard when they're in danger. Harry's is a stag, Hermione's is an otter, and Ron's is a dog, but apparently Voldemort doesn't have one. Presumably this is because he can't feel enough love and hope to conjure a Patronus, which is kind of sad. What Patronus do you think he would have? A snake? A polar bear? Or maybe something totally random like a toucan!
10. He Has Lots in Common With Harry
Harry and Voldemort share more traits than they'd like to think. They're both orphan boys with half-blood status, and they both got mentored by Dumbledore. They both felt most at home at Hogwarts, and went on to become powerful wizards. They also share a wand core (unicorn hair) which suggests a link between them. However, Harry chooses to be a good person and look out for people, whereas Voldemort only wants power and glory.
11. He Went to the Olympics
Sadly we don't mean he was doing the high jump or pole vault. Voldemort was featured at the 2012 opening ceremony for the London Olympics, as part of a section celebrating children's literature. He appeared as a rather terrifying puppet looming over everyone, until a fleet of Mary Poppinses (Poppinsi?) arrive to defeat him.
12. He Could Have Gone After Neville
Although a prophecy claimed that a boy born in July would be the one to defeat Voldemort, it didn't actually say which boy. In fact, there's one other person it could have been - Neville. Neville also has a similar background to Harry and Voldemort - all three grew up without parents and possessed unusual magical strength. Voldemort decided to go after Harry, other wise it could have been a series all about Neville!
13. He Had A Daughter
According to the plot of the stage play, The Cursed Child, Voldemort actually has a daughter with his follower Bellatrix Lestrange, called Delphini! In the play, she attempts to change history so that she can restore her father to power!
14. His Wand Was Made of Yew
Voldemort's wand is made of yew wood, which is significant for a couple of reasons. Yew trees are a symbol of death, because their berries are poisonous. But they are also symbols of immortality, which is appropriate for Voldemort, who's goal is to defeat death.
15. His Name isn't Pronounced How You Might Think
You've probably been saying Voldemort's name wrong this whole time! Yup, according to JK Rowling, the 't' on the end is silent! That's because Voldemort's name is based on the French word for death! Don't worry, it's probably fine to keep saying the 't'!
16. He Has Links With Albania
For some reason, Albania was the place Voldemort chose to hang out in hiding after Harry destroyed him as a baby. (That's Harry as a baby, not Voldemort). But why? Well, turns out he's got a connection with Albania, because it was here that Helena Ravenclaw decided to hide her mother's diadem for safekeeping, and also where Voldemort found it and turned it into a horcrux. He obviously felt like it was an important place for him, which is why he went back!
17. The Death Eaters Have An Interesting Alternative Name
The Death Eaters weren't actually called the Death Eaters originally! In earlier drafts, JK Rowling called them 'The Knights of Walpurgis', which is a play on Walpurgis Night, a night where demons and devils are said to roam the land, which is mentioned in famous spooky stories like Dracula.
18. His Snake Nagini Has Special Powers
Nagini isn't just a scary giant snake, she also has hidden powers. She's not even actually a snake, she's something called a Maledictus, someone who's cursed to turn into an animal. This is something we find out in the Fantastic Beasts series, as Nagini is only seen in her snake form in the Harry Potter books and films.
19. He is Distantly Related to Harry
The wizarding world is pretty small, so you're probably not that surprised to hear that Harry and Voldemort share a family tree. They are in fact, very distantly related through the Peverell family, who if you remember are the three wizarding brothers from the tale of the Deathly Hallows. Must make family gatherings a bit awkward...