Why the Name Voldemort Is Not Spoken in the World of Harry Potter

Video why can't you say voldemort's name

There’s no shortage of evil wizards and witches in the wizarding world of Harry Potter, but none inspire as much fear as Lord Voldemort. Even his Death Eaters pale in comparison to the terror he instills. It’s no wonder that Voldemort’s name is rarely uttered in wizarding society. However, is there more to it than meets the eye? Let’s dive in and uncover the real reason behind the silence surrounding Voldemort’s name.

Who is Lord Voldemort of ‘Harry Potter’?

Born on December 31, 1926, Tom Marvolo Riddle was a frightening figure from an early age. His mother, Merope Gaunt-Riddle, passed away shortly after giving birth to him and naming him. Consequently, he grew up in a Muggle orphanage in London. It was there that he discovered his magical abilities, using them to strike fear into the hearts of the other orphans.

At the age of eleven, Riddle enrolled at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Although he reluctantly returned to the orphanage every summer, he delved into his family history while at school. He learned that his mother was a witch and a member of the Gaunt family, descendants of Salazar Slytherin. During his time at Hogwarts, he also uncovered the Chamber of Secrets and utilized its basilisk to harm Muggle-born students. It was during this period that he became obsessed with creating Horcruxes and dividing his soul into seven fragments.

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When Did Tom Riddle Become Feared as Voldemort?

During his time at school, Riddle successfully fooled most of his teachers into believing he was a brilliant and moral young boy. Upon graduating, he approached the headmaster at the time, Armando Dippet, with a request to teach at Hogwarts, unwilling to leave the castle. Deeming him too young, Dippet declined Riddle’s offer, but encouraged him to reapply in the future.

Afterwards, Riddle journeyed to Albania to find Ravenclaw’s lost diadem, the location of which he obtained from Helena, Rowena Ravenclaw’s daughter and the house ghost of Ravenclaw. Upon his return to Britain, he was offered various positions in the Ministry of Magic, but instead chose to work at Borgin and Burkes. It was there that he encountered Hepzibah Smith, a descendant of Helga Hufflepuff, who showed him Slytherin’s locket and Hufflepuff’s cup. To obtain them, Riddle killed her.

Following Hepzibah Smith’s murder, Tom Riddle vanished, leaving his superiors at Borgin and Burkes clueless about his whereabouts. During this ten-year absence, he traveled the globe, studying the Dark Arts and openly adopting the name Lord Voldemort. He also made another unsuccessful attempt to secure a teaching position at Hogwarts, this time asking Albus Dumbledore.

Naturally, Dumbledore refused, knowing full well that Voldemort had no genuine interest in teaching. Subsequently, Voldemort began recruiting additional Death Eaters in the lead-up to the First Wizarding War. It was during this conflict that Voldemort’s name became feared, with wizards resorting to referring to him as “You Know Who” or “He Who Must Not Be Named.”

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However, it wasn’t until the Second Wizarding War that the true reason for avoiding Voldemort’s name came to light.

Why Shouldn’t You Say Voldemort’s Name?

Consider this: Voldemort is cunning. He understands that most wizards and witches fear him, and as a result, they refrain from uttering his name. But who might still use it?

Could it be Harry Potter and his friends? Or members of the Order of the Phoenix? If you guessed either of these, you’re correct. And during the Second Wizarding War, Voldemort decides to exploit that vulnerability.

In the final book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry, Ron, and Hermione are captured by Snatchers and taken to Malfoy Manor. The reason for their capture? One of them dared to speak Voldemort’s name. You see, Voldemort had cast a curse known as the Taboo, which alerted his Death Eaters and allies anytime his name was mentioned.

According to Screen Rant, this revelation was supposed to appear in a scene from the movie Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part One. However, it was left out of the final edit. While book readers were aware of this plot point, some movie-only fans may have been puzzled as to how Harry, Ron, and Hermione were located so easily after spending an extended period in hiding. Nonetheless, clever fans likely figured it out, and the information has now become common knowledge.

In conclusion, the fear surrounding Voldemort’s name in the wizarding world of Harry Potter goes beyond superstition. It is a calculated strategy implemented by Voldemort himself, exploiting the fear and silence of those who oppose him. The name Voldemort is synonymous with darkness, reminding us that sometimes, even a simple name can hold great power.

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