Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

by

J. K. Rowling

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Albus Dumbledore Character Analysis

Harry's beloved former headmaster of Hogwarts; Snape murdered him a month or so before the novel begins. The Dumbledore that Harry knew seemed to have always been old, always on the side of good, and was decidedly uninterested in seizing power, despite being one of the most powerful wizards of the age. Harry felt like he and Dumbledore were extremely close, as Dumbledore was both a mentor and a father figure to Harry. All this begins to break down, however, as Harry begins to learn about Dumbledore's early life, thanks to Rita Skeeter's hastily written biography of Dumbledore. Harry struggles with what to believe as he hears and reads that Dumbledore briefly plotted with the evil wizard Grindelwald to subjugate Muggles and that Dumbledore kept his younger Squib sister, Ariana, locked up, just like his mother Kendra did. Harry ultimately chooses to believe that Dumbledore had a plan, that he loved Harry, and that he did fight for good. The Dumbledore that Harry meets when Harry is dead, though he isn't real, suggests that Dumbledore was a far more nuanced character than either Harry or Rita Skeeter gave him credit for. The dream Dumbledore says that he did initially want to seize power for questionable reasons, but was unfit to do anything but possess the Elder Wand and use it for good. Harry is reminded that Dumbledore is both extremely intelligent and a meticulous planner; he planned Harry's entire life down to his self-sacrifice to Voldemort and gives Harry the information and the courage that Harry needs to go on and defeat Voldemort.

Albus Dumbledore Quotes in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

The Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows quotes below are all either spoken by Albus Dumbledore or refer to Albus Dumbledore . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Choices, Redemption, and Morality Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Scholastic Inc. edition of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows published in 2007.
Chapter Two Quotes

He had thought he knew Dumbledore quite well, but ever since reading this obituary he had been forced to recognize that he had barely known him at all. Never once had he imagined Dumbledore's childhood or youth; it was as though he had sprung into being as Harry had known him, venerable and silver-haired and old. The idea of a teenage Dumbledore was simply odd, like trying to imagine a stupid Hermione or a friendly Blast-Ended Skrewt.

Page Number: 21
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Five Quotes

Dumbledore would have believed him, he knew it. Dumbledore would have known how and why Harry's wand had acted independently, because Dumbledore always had the answers; he had known about wands, had explained to Harry the strange connection that existed between his wand and Voldemort's...But Dumbledore, like Mad-Eye, like Sirius, like his parents, like his poor owl, all were gone where Harry could never talk to them again.

Page Number: 84
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Eight Quotes

Harry looked into Doge's earnest, pained face and felt, not reassured, but frustrated. Did Doge really think it was that easy, that Harry could simply choose not to believe? Didn't Doge understand Harry's need to be sure, to know everything?

Page Number: 152-53
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Ten Quotes

The accusations he had heard from Muriel at the wedding seemed to have nested in his brain like diseased things, infecting his memories of the wizard he had idolized. Could Dumbledore have let such things happen? Had he been like Dudley, content to watch neglect and abuse as long as it did not affect him? Could he have turned his back on a sister who was being imprisoned and hidden?

Page Number: 177
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Eighteen Quotes

Dumbledore had left them to grope in the darkness, to wrestle with unknown and undreamed-of terrors, alone and unaided: nothing was explained, nothing was given freely, they had no sword, and now, Harry had no wand. And he had dropped the photograph of the thief, and it would surely be easy now for Voldemort to find out who he was...Voldemort had all the information now...

Page Number: 351
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Nineteen Quotes

He was not being kind or generous. As certainly as he had known that the doe was benign, he knew that Ron had to be the one to wield the sword. Dumbledore had at least taught Harry something about certain kinds of magic, of the incalculable power of certain acts.

Page Number: 373-74
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Twenty Quotes

Ron looked a little embarrassed, but said in a low voice, "Dumbledore...the doe? I mean," Ron was watching Harry out of the corners of his eyes, "he had the real sword last, didn't he?"

Harry did not laugh at Ron, because he understood too well the longing behind the question. The idea that Dumbledore had managed to come back to them, that he was watching over them, would have been inexpressibly comforting. He shook his head.

Related Characters: Ron Weasley (speaker), Harry Potter, Albus Dumbledore
Page Number: 390
Explanation and Analysis:

"Sometimes I've thought, when I've been a bit hacked off, he was having a laugh or—or he just wanted to make it more difficult. But I don't think so, not anymore. He knew what he was doing when he gave me the Deluminator, didn't he?" He—well, [...] he must've known I'd run out on you."

"No," Harry corrected him. "He must've known you'd always want to come back."

Related Characters: Harry Potter (speaker), Ron Weasley (speaker), Albus Dumbledore
Page Number: 391
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Twenty-Eight Quotes

He did not want to express the doubts and uncertainties about Dumbledore that had riddled him for months now. He had made his choice while he dug Dobby's grave, he had decided to continue along the winding, dangerous path indicated for him by Albus Dumbledore, to accept that he had not been told everything that he wanted to know, but simply to trust. He had no desire to doubt again; he did not want to hear anything that would deflect him from his purpose.

Page Number: 563
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Twenty-Nine Quotes

Dumbledore had warned him against telling anyone but Ron and Hermione about the Horcruxes. Secrets and lies, that's how we grew up, and Albus...he was a natural...Was he turning into Dumbledore, keeping his secrets clutched to his chest, afraid to trust? But Dumbledore had trusted Snape, and where had that led? To murder at the top of the highest tower...

"All right," he said quietly to the other two.

Page Number: 583
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Thirty-Three Quotes

"And are you tempted to join him?"

"No," said Snape, his black eyes on Fleur and Roger's retreating figures. "I am not such a coward."

"No," agreed Dumbledore. "You are a braver man by far than Igor Karkaroff. You know, I sometimes think we Sort too soon..."

Related Characters: Severus Snape (speaker), Albus Dumbledore (speaker)
Page Number: 680
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Thirty-Four Quotes

And Dumbledore had known that Harry would not duck out, that he would keep going to the end, even though it was his end, because he had taken trouble to get to know him, hadn't he? Dumbledore knew, as Voldemort knew, that Harry would not let anyone else die for him now that he had discovered it was in his power to stop it.

Page Number: 693
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter Thirty-Five Quotes

"And his knowledge remained woefully incomplete, Harry! That which Voldemort does not value, he takes no trouble to comprehend. Of house-elves and children's tales, of love, loyalty, and innocence, Voldemort knows and understands nothing. Nothing. That they all have a power beyond his own, a power beyond the reach of any magic, is a truth he has never grasped."

Related Characters: Albus Dumbledore (speaker), Harry Potter, Lord Voldemort
Related Symbols: The Elder Wand
Page Number: 709-10
Explanation and Analysis:

"So Voldemort, instead of asking himself what quality it was in you that had made your wand so strong, what gift you possessed that he did not, naturally set out to find the one wand that, they said, would beat any other. For him, the Elder Wand has become an obsession to rival his obsession with you. He believes that the Elder Wand removes his last weakness and makes him truly invincible."

Related Characters: Albus Dumbledore (speaker), Harry Potter, Lord Voldemort
Related Symbols: The Elder Wand
Page Number: 721
Explanation and Analysis:

"Tell me one last thing," said Harry. "Is this real? Or has this been happening inside my head?"

Dumbledore beamed at him, and his voice sounded loud and strong in Harry's ears even though the bright mist was descending again, obscuring his figure.

"Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?"

Related Characters: Albus Dumbledore (speaker), Harry Potter
Page Number: 723
Explanation and Analysis:
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Albus Dumbledore Character Timeline in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

The timeline below shows where the character Albus Dumbledore appears in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter Two
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...on his desk. He finds the issue containing an obituary written by Elphias Doge about Dumbledore and sits down to read it. Doge writes about how he met Dumbledore at Hogwarts... (full context)
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Doge writes that he and Dumbledore planned to tour the world after finishing school, but the death of Dumbledore's mother, Kendra,... (full context)
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Harry turns to the most recent Prophet issue and sees an article titled "Dumbledore—The Truth at Last?" It announces Rita Skeeter's next book, a biography of Dumbledore exploring his... (full context)
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...mirror fragment and sees a flash of a blue eye. He's sure he imagined seeing Dumbledore's eye, as Dumbledore is dead. (full context)
Chapter Five
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...knows they didn't do it on purpose. Harry thinks that Moody was always derisive about Dumbledore's desire to trust people, but Fred and George cheer Harry. Lupin says that Harry is... (full context)
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...a wand doing magic on its own. Harry excuses himself and steps outside, thinking that Dumbledore would've believed him. The pain reaches a peak and Harry hears and sees Voldemort yelling... (full context)
Chapter Six
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...were taken out of the library, but she was able to Summon them out of Dumbledore's office after he died. She pulls the book out. (full context)
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...it can happen when a person gets emotionally close to a Horcrux. Harry wonders how Dumbledore destroyed the ring as Mrs. Weasley bursts in and demands help with wedding gifts. (full context)
Chapter Seven
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...the trio refuse to speak to Scrimgeour individually. He explains that he's here because of Dumbledore's will, and Hermione scathingly says that the Ministry has probably been going through Dumbledore's things... (full context)
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Scrimgeour ignores Hermione and asks Ron if he and Dumbledore were close. Ron says they weren't, and Scrimgeour wants to know why Dumbledore left him... (full context)
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Finally, Scrimgeour says that Dumbledore also left Harry the sword of Gryffindor, which he says wasn't Dumbledore's to give. He... (full context)
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Over dinner, the guests pass around the objects from Dumbledore. They eat quickly and then Harry, Ron, and Hermione meet in Ron's bedroom. Harry puts... (full context)
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...he should be able to figure out the riddle, and that he should know why Dumbledore didn't give him the sword when he had the chance last year. Ron is shocked... (full context)
Chapter Eight
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...Elphias Doge sitting alone, joins him, and reveals his identity. They discuss that Doge knew Dumbledore well, and Harry asks if he saw Rita Skeeter's insistence that Dumbledore was involved in... (full context)
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Muriel insists that the Dumbledore family kept Ariana a secret because of shame, while Doge insists that Ariana was just... (full context)
Chapter Nine
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...Snape?" and the trio's tongues roll up and flatten again. Then, a horrific effigy of Dumbledore flies at them and explodes when Harry says that they didn't kill him. (full context)
Chapter Ten
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...holding hands. He thinks about what will come, and feels as though Muriel's accusations about Dumbledore are poisoning his mind. He resents that Dumbledore never told him anything and wonders if... (full context)
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...writes that Bathilda came for birthday tea and that James is going stir crazy since Dumbledore has his Invisibility Cloak and he can't sneak out. The last half-sentence says that Bathilda... (full context)
Chapter Eleven
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...copy of the Daily Prophet at Harry. The headline reads that they want Harry for Dumbledore's murder. Lupin says that the coup was so quiet that nobody knows the truth, and... (full context)
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...wizards before being allowed to attend. Lupin confirms that Harry is on a mission from Dumbledore, offers to accompany the trio, and insists he doesn't need to know what the mission... (full context)
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...starts to flip through the Prophet that Lupin brought until he finds a photo of Dumbledore's family and an excerpt from Rita Skeeter's book. It talks about how Kendra moved the... (full context)
Chapter Thirteen
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Grief and Coming of Age Theme Icon
...tracked in case "Undesirable No. 1" makes contact. Harry also notices Rita Skeeter's biography of Dumbledore on the desk and opens the book randomly to a photograph of young Dumbledore laughing... (full context)
Chapter Fifteen
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...then says indifferently that the students were punished. They discuss whether or not Snape killed Dumbledore, and both Dean and Ted defend Harry and tell Dirk to read the Quibbler to... (full context)
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...and Hermione celebrate as Hermione shoves the portrait back into her purse. They deduce that Dumbledore planned to use the sword on the locket, but they wonder where Dumbledore hid the... (full context)
Chapter Sixteen
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...at Hogwarts. He never shows up, so Harry fixates on Ginny's dot. They discuss where Dumbledore might have hidden the sword, but Harry keeps thinking that Ron was right: Harry has... (full context)
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...Harry's request to go to Godric's Hollow and surprises him by agreeing. She suggests that Dumbledore might've left the sword there, since he'd know that Harry would want to go there... (full context)
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...Skeeter and Muriel were right about something. Harry feels betrayed and thinks that he and Dumbledore could've come together to the graveyard. He continues on, but returns when Hermione finds a... (full context)
Chapter Eighteen
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...twin cores and places his wand in the moleskin pouch. Harry feels suddenly furious at Dumbledore for not leaving him more clues. Hermione nervously interrupts Harry with tea and asks if... (full context)
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Grief and Coming of Age Theme Icon
...the book and both he and Hermione gasp at the caption: the man is Grindelwald, Dumbledore's "friend." They find the corresponding chapter and read about how Dumbledore returned home after Kendra's... (full context)
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Hermione suggests that Dumbledore was alone and grieving, and when Harry says that he was keeping "his Squib sister"... (full context)
Chapter Twenty
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...using Voldemort's name alerts the Ministry. Kingsley was almost captured this way. Ron asks if Dumbledore might've sent the doe. Harry wants to think that Dumbledore is still alive, but he... (full context)
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They briefly discuss Rita Skeeter's biography of Dumbledore and Ron attempts to defend Dumbledore's friendship with Grindelwald. Harry spits that Dumbledore was their... (full context)
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Hermione insists that the symbol must be important and suggests that Dumbledore wanted them to figure out what it means. Ron supports this, but Harry glares at... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-One
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...Tale of the Three Brothers." Only Ron is, and Hermione pulls out the book from Dumbledore to read it out loud. It tells the story of three brothers who meet Death... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Three
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...Cruciatus Curse on her. Harry starts pulling things out of his moleskin bag and sees Dumbledore's eye in the mirror. He asks for help and says they're at Malfoy manor. Hermione... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Four
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Harry feels like he's back with Dumbledore's body as Bill, Fleur, Dean, and Luna surround him. Dean carries Griphook inside and Harry... (full context)
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...Harry says he needs to speak to them both first. Harry thinks that he saw Dumbledore's eye in the mirror and then Dobby came. He wonders if Dumbledore knew Harry would... (full context)
Knowledge and Power Theme Icon
...the connection with Voldemort. He tells them that Grindelwald stole the wand from Gregorovitch, and Dumbledore won the wand in their famous duel. Ron says they need to go to Hogwarts... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Five
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...choice and believes the Elder Wand is evil. Harry fears that he didn't understand what Dumbledore wanted and Ron continues to wonder if Dumbledore isn't actually dead. While they argue about... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Six
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...Harry thinks that Dobby's grave is in the perfect spot, though he still wonders how Dumbledore sent the elf. (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Seven
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...Harry discovered his secret. He murders the goblin and others, and wonders if Harry and Dumbledore know his secret. He decides to check on his other Horcruxes, and thinks he'll visit... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Eight
Choices, Redemption, and Morality Theme Icon
Grief and Coming of Age Theme Icon
...of Hogsmeade. Harry says he needs to get into Hogwarts and has to do what Dumbledore asked him to do. Aberforth notes that Dumbledore's plans often caused people to get hurt... (full context)
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Hermione says that Dumbledore cared about Harry, but Aberforth spits that lots of people Dumbledore "cared" about suffered. Aberforth... (full context)
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Aberforth says that Grindelwald left and Dumbledore was then free of his burdens. Harry says that Dumbledore wasn't free: the potion Dumbledore... (full context)
Chapter Twenty-Nine
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...what the plan is and Neville asks to help, but Harry refuses. He says that Dumbledore gave them a secret job, which they need to accomplish and then leave. Luna and... (full context)
Chapter Thirty
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...Voldemort realizing that the locket is gone. He tells McGonagall that he has to finish Dumbledore's mission and she needs to get the students out of Hogwarts. She promises to secure... (full context)
Chapter Thirty-One
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...he didn't keep a few Slytherin kids hostage. Harry says that Voldemort wouldn't care and Dumbledore wouldn't have done it. Harry races on and finally finds Ron and Hermione. Ron explains... (full context)
Chapter Thirty-Three
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...Weasleys surrounding Fred's body. He sees Lupin and Tonks's bodies too, and races away to Dumbledore's office. Harry pulls out the Pensieve, pours in Snape's thoughts, and dives in. (full context)
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...Lily apologizing to Petunia on platform 9 3/4. Lily assures Petunia that she'll talk to Dumbledore about letting her come to Hogwarts, but Petunia cries and says she doesn't want to... (full context)
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The scene changes to years later. Dumbledore meets adult Snape and Snape shares that Voldemort thinks that the prophecy refers to Lily... (full context)
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Back in Dumbledore's office, Snape does his best to save Dumbledore's blackened hand. Dumbledore comes to, and Snape... (full context)
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In Dumbledore's office again, he tells Snape that when Voldemort starts keeping Nagini close to him, it... (full context)
Chapter Thirty-Four
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On the floor of Dumbledore's office, Harry feels like he finally has the truth: he's not supposed to survive, and... (full context)
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...home, just as it was home to Voldemort and Snape. Harry remembers the Snitch that Dumbledore left him. He pulls it out and whispers to it that it's going to die.... (full context)
Chapter Thirty-Five
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...child that looks flayed, shuddering under a bench. It scares Harry, but he approaches anyway. Dumbledore walks toward Harry and tells Harry that he can't help and then leads him away.... (full context)
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Harry asks how he's alive if nobody died for him. Dumbledore waits for Harry to realize that Voldemort took Harry's blood, which will keep Harry alive... (full context)
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Harry asks why his wand broke Voldemort's borrowed wand. Though Dumbledore says he's not sure, he guesses that Voldemort strengthened his bond to Harry by taking... (full context)
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Annoyed, Harry asks about the Deathly Hallows. Dumbledore looks guilty, asks for Harry's forgiveness, and suggests that he, like Voldemort, wanted to be... (full context)
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Dumbledore says that, in the years after, Grindelwald acquired the Elder Wand and Dumbledore refused to... (full context)
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Harry asks why Dumbledore made the journey so difficult. Dumbledore admits that he didn't want Harry to seek the... (full context)
Chapter Thirty-Six
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...because of love or because he has better magic. Harry says he has both, defends Dumbledore, and Voldemort insists that he orchestrated Dumbledore's death. Harry calmly explains that Dumbledore orchestrated his... (full context)
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...reach the headmaster's office and the gargoyle lets them up. The headmasters' portraits applaud, and Dumbledore's crying portrait beams at Harry. Harry tells Dumbledore he dropped the Resurrection Stone in the... (full context)