The Most Heartbreaking Moments In The Harry Potter Franchise

In “The Sorcerer’s Stone,” we learn that Harry is no ordinary boy, but is the Boy Who Lived -– the only known person to survive an attack from Lord Voldemort. When he is just a baby, Harry’s parents, Lily and James Potter, stand up to Voldemort and are killed, which leaves Harry an orphan.

On his eleventh birthday, Harry is picked up by the gentle giant Hagrid and taken to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to begin his magical education. After a difficult upbringing with his aunt, uncle, and spoiled cousin, it is at Hogwarts that Harry finds his chosen family in his close-knit group of friends.

While wandering the castle at night, Harry finds a mysterious mirror, which he later learns is the Mirror of Erised. When he looks into the mirror, Harry can see his parents standing beside him. Later on, Dumbledore finds Harry staring into the mirror again and offers some sage advice, telling him, “It does not do to dwell on dreams, and forget to live.” 

This is a crushing thing to learn for the young Harry, but Dumbledore is right. No amount of longing or magic can bring his parents back. The honesty of this moment somehow makes it even more tragic, and it helps to cement what it is that drives Harry after this point -– the desire to make his parents proud and defeat the evil that took them.

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