Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

by

J. K. Rowling

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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince Characters

Harry Potter

The novel’s protagonist, a teenaged wizard studying at Hogwarts and fighting the evil Lord Voldemort. Harry has been an orphan since his parents, Lily and James, were murdered by Lord Voldemort during his… read analysis of Harry Potter

Albus Dumbledore

The Headmaster of Hogwarts, the leader of the Order of the Phoenix, and one of the most accomplished wizards of all time. Dumbledore has long made it his mission to lead the combat against Voldemortread analysis of Albus Dumbledore

Lord Voldemort / Tom Riddle

Also known as the Dark Lord, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, or You-Know-Who, Voldemort is the novel’s antagonist, a Dark wizard who has recently returned to his full strength and is now marshaling his army to wreak havoc on… read analysis of Lord Voldemort / Tom Riddle

Ron Weasley

One of Harry’s best friends. A member of the large and gregarious Weasley clan, Ron welcomes Harry into his family, providing the home and security his orphaned friend lacks, lacks despite Harry’s superior wealth… read analysis of Ron Weasley

Hermione Granger

One of Harry’s best friends. Hermione is indisputably the smartest witch in her class at Hogwarts, as well as the hardest working. Nevertheless, because of her Muggle heritage she’s often exposed to prejudiced comments… read analysis of Hermione Granger
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Severus Snape

The Potions professor at Hogwarts, and a longtime member of the Order of the Phoenix. Cold and enigmatic, Snape is still nursing his resentment for being bullied by James Potter during his time at Hogwarts… read analysis of Severus Snape

Ginny Weasley

Ron’s sister and the youngest member of the Weasley clan. Ginny is a tough and talented witch, as well as an excellent Quidditch player. In Half-Blood Prince Ginny begins to step out from her… read analysis of Ginny Weasley

Horace Slughorn

Hogwarts’s new Potions professor, whom Dumbledore recruits at the beginning of the novel. While he seems to be a kindly and gregarious old man, Slughorn is also cowardly, more concerned with his own safety and… read analysis of Horace Slughorn

Professor McGonagall

The Deputy Headmistress of Hogwarts, Head of Gryffindor House, and Transfiguration professor. Stern and formidable, she expects hard work and exemplary behavior out of all her students and never hesitates to reprimand those of her… read analysis of Professor McGonagall

Draco Malfoy

Harry’s longtime nemesis, now a Death Eater charged with murdering Dumbledore. Although he’s outwardly cruel, prejudiced, and completely committed to Voldemort’s service, inwardly Draco is confused and reluctant to take on this new… read analysis of Draco Malfoy

Molly Weasley

Ron’s mother and the matriarch of the Weasley clan. Assertive and resourceful, Mrs. Weasley manages to care for her family on a tiny budget and acts as a surrogate mother to Harry, who… read analysis of Molly Weasley

Arthur Weasley

Ron’s father and Mrs. Weasley’s husband. Humble and unassuming, Mr. Weasley is a minor Ministry employee with little standing in the outside world; however, he’s also a devoted father and a trusted mentor… read analysis of Arthur Weasley

Percy Weasley

Ron’s older brother and a Ministry employee. The most conventionally successful Weasley, Percy broke with his family in Order of the Phoenix because of their allegiance to Dumbledore and defiance of the Ministry’s official… read analysis of Percy Weasley

Fleur Delacour

Bill’s fiancée, one of the competitors in the Triwizard Tournament of Harry’s fourth year. Because she’s part veela, Fleur exercises a supernatural attraction over many men, while her somewhat smug and self-satisfied behavior… read analysis of Fleur Delacour

Hagrid

The Hogwarts groundskeeper and Care of Magical Creatures teacher, and Harry’s longtime friend and ally. While many people look down on Hagrid for his giant blood and unmannerly demeanor, Harry values his loyalty and… read analysis of Hagrid

Narcissa Malfoy

Draco’s mother and Lucius’s wife. Although she’s a member of a prominent Death Eater family, Narcissa is much more concerned with preserving Drcao’s well-being than serving Voldemort. When Voldemort forces Draco to… read analysis of Narcissa Malfoy

Uncle Vernon

Harry’s uncle and Aunt Petunia’s husband. Grumpy, uncommunicative, and occasionally violent, Uncle Vernon has always mistreated and undervalued Harry while spoiling his own son, Dudley. He’s also overly interested in money –… read analysis of Uncle Vernon

Aunt Petunia

Harry’s aunt and Uncle Vernon’s husband. A deeply conventional and uptight woman, Aunt Petunia has always disliked and feared Harry for his tendency to say and do odd things. Because of this, she’s… read analysis of Aunt Petunia

Dudley Dursley

Harry’s cousin, Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon’s son. For most of their lives Dudley has bullied Harry with impunity, as his parents spoil him and deeply dislike their nephew. However, while Harry has… read analysis of Dudley Dursley

Cornelius Fudge

The Minister of Magic who has governed the Wizarding world since Harry’s childhood, but who is replaced at the beginning of Half-Blood Prince by Rufus Scrimgeour. Pompous, indecisive, and generally self-serving, Fudge typifies the… read analysis of Cornelius Fudge

Rufus Scrimgeour

The new Minister of Magic, who replaces Cornelius Fudge at the beginning of Half-Blood Prince. Because of his tough demeanor and background as an Auror, the Wizarding community believes that he’s prepared to combat… read analysis of Rufus Scrimgeour

Sirius Black

Harry’s godfather and James Potter’s best friend. A member of a prominent Death Eater family, Sirius defected to the Order of the Phoenix and was disowned by all of his relatives – like… read analysis of Sirius Black

Remus Lupin

One of James Potter’s best friends, a werewolf and member of the Order of the Phoenix. Like Sirius, Lupin is a link to Harry’s father – but he’s more thoughtful and less… read analysis of Remus Lupin

Neville Longbottom

A fellow Gryffindor and Harry’s increasingly close friend. Usually considered clumsy and uncool, Neville has recently proved himself by battling alongside Harry at the end of Order of the Phoenix and enjoys a measure… read analysis of Neville Longbottom

Luna Lovegood

A Ravenclaw student and one of Harry’s friends. Because she dresses oddly, behaves eccentrically, and has a habit of telling uncomfortable truths, Luna is considered an oddity at school and has few friends. However… read analysis of Luna Lovegood

Cormac McLaggen

A fellow Gryffindor who becomes a fixture at Slughorn’s parties and suppers as a result of his prestigious family and connections to Rufus Scrimgeour. Blustering and arrogant, Cormac tries out for Ron’s… read analysis of Cormac McLaggen

Cho Chang

A Ravenclaw student and Harry’s former love interest. After the failure of their relationship, both Harry and Cho are too embarrassed to speak to each other; this awkward state of affairs convinces Harry that… read analysis of Cho Chang

Marietta

Cho Chang’s best friend, who betrayed Dumbledore’s Army to Professor Umbridge in Order of the Phoenix. In her brief appearance in Half-Blood Prince, her face is still scarred by pimples spelling out… read analysis of Marietta

Marvolo Gaunt

Voldemort’s grandfather. Marvolo is the scion of the Gaunt family, which was once wealthy and prestigious but has now lost its status and developed a reputation for inbreeding and insanity. Despite the squalor in… read analysis of Marvolo Gaunt

Morfin Gaunt

Marvolo’s son and Voldemort’s uncle. Encouraged by his father, Morfin attacks Muggles living in the village near the family’s home and is sent to Azkaban for his behavior. As a young man Voldemort… read analysis of Morfin Gaunt

Merope Gaunt

Voldemort’s mother. A member of the ancient but now impoverished Gaunt family, Merope is physically and emotionally abused by her father, Marvolo, and brother, Morfin. When they are sent to Azkaban, she’s… read analysis of Merope Gaunt

Tom Riddle, Sr.

Voldemort’s father, a wealthy Muggle. The sparse information Dumbledore gathers about him testifies to a selfish and unsympathetic character: in Ogden’s memory he drives by the Gaunt’s filthy cottage and laughs at the… read analysis of Tom Riddle, Sr.

Kreacher

A house-elf who once belonged to Sirius. While Harry feels no affection for the house-elf, who passed information about Sirius to the Death Eaters and helped bring about his death, he’s careful not to… read analysis of Kreacher

Fenrir Greyback

A werewolf and Death Eater. Unlike Lupin, who strives to overcome his disability and live a normal life, Greyback embraces his status and actively tries to bite children, attempting to create an army of… read analysis of Fenrir Greyback
Minor Characters
Bill Weasley
Ron’s oldest brother, who works as a curse-breaker for Gringotts bank. He is engaged to Fleur Delacour. In the final battle of Half-Blood Prince he is bitten by the werewolf Fenrir Greyback and severely mutilated, although he does not actually become a werewolf.
Fred Weasley
Ron’s older brother and George’s twin. Using Harry’s winnings from the Triwizard Tournament, Fred and George have just opened a wildly successful joke shop. Although they’re given to teasing and practical jokes, Fred and George are deeply loyal to their family.
George Weasley
Ron’s older brother and Fred’s twin. Using Harry’s winnings from the Triwizard Tournament, Fred and George have just opened a wildly successful joke shop. Although they’re given to teasing and practical jokes, Fred and George are deeply loyal to their family.
Professor Trelawney
One of Hogwarts’ professors of Divination. Although she’s largely incompetent and has taken to drinking, Trelawney also made the famous prophecy that named Harry or Neville as Voldemort’s greatest enemy, and led Voldemort to kill Harry’s parents.
The Muggle Prime Minister
The Prime Minister of Muggle England, whom Fudge and Scrimgeour visit briefly to inform of Voldemort’s return. Like his Wizarding counterparts, the Muggle Prime Minister seems more concerned with preserving his power and reputation than protecting his constituents; also like them, he emerges as completely unequipped to fight Voldemort.
Lily Potter
Harry’s mother, who was killed by Voldemort during Harry’s infancy. In Half-Blood Prince, Slughorn frequently mentions that her gift for Potions made her one of his favorite students, despite her Muggle ancestry.
James Potter
Harry’s father, who was killed by Voldemort during Harry’s infancy. Although Harry treasures his father’s memory and wants to emulate his bravery and loyalty, he’s recently caught a glimpse of his flaws by entering Snape’s memories and watching James bully him mercilessly during their time at Hogwarts.
Nymphadora Tonks
Sirius’s cousin and a member of the Order of the Phoenix. Like Sirius, she is alienated from most of her family because of her mother’s decision to marry a Muggle and abandon Voldemort’s side. She is in love with Remus Lupin.
Wormtail / Peter Pettigrew
One of the four Marauders – James Potter’s clique at Hogwarts – who later betrayed Harry’s father and now works for Voldemort. Pettigrew appears only briefly in Half-Blood Prince, as a servant to Severus Snape.
Dean Thomas
A Gryffindor in Harry’s class and Ginny’s boyfriend for much of the novel. As Harry’s feelings for Ginny become stronger, he’s disturbed to find himself disliking Dean, with whom he’s always been friendly.
Lavender Brown
A fellow Gryffindor and Ron’s girlfriend for much of the novel. Lavender’s sappy and sentimental behavior alternately flatters and disconcerts Ron; meanwhile, their relationship hurts Hermione and annoys Harry. Ron’s relationship with Lavender represents the ways in which romance can disrupt pre-existing friendships.
Katie Bell
A seventh-year student and Chaser on the Gryffindor Quidditch team. Katie falls victim to the Imperius Curse and is forced to deliver a cursed necklace to Hogwarts. When she accidentally touches the necklace the plot is discovered and stopped, but she almost dies as a result.
Hokey
A house-elf working for Hepzibah Smith. Through the elf’s memory, Harry and Dumbledore witness the elderly witch show a young Voldemort her two treasures, the cup of Hufflepuff and locket of Slytherin. Shortly after this visit Voldemort murders her, steals her valuable possessions, and frames Hokey for the crime.
Hepzibah Smith
A rich and elderly witch who, besotted by the young Tom Riddle, reveals two ancient relics that she owns: the cup of Hufflepuff and the locket of Slytherin. Subsequently, Riddle kills her and turns the artifacts into Horcruxes.
Dobby
A house-elf Harry has known for years, who once belonged to the Malfoy family and has lived at Hogwarts since his emancipation. Dobby helps Harry by tracking Draco’s movements, although he’s unable to uncover much information.
Bob Ogden
A Ministry employee who visits the Gaunts and apprehends Morfin for attacking Muggles. Through Ogden’s memory, Harry and Dumbledore gain some insight into the nefarious behavior and values of Voldemort’s family.
Caractacus Burke
One of the owners of Borgin and Burkes, the infamous purveyor of sinister secondhand goods. Burke gives Dumbledore his memory of buying Merope’s valuable locket and paying far less than the valuable antique was worth.
Borgin
One of the owners of Borgin and Burkes, an infamous purveyor of sinister secondhand goods.
Mundungus Fletcher
A conman, thief, and half-hearted member of the Order of the Phoenix. In Hogsmeade, Harry encounters Mundungus selling items pilfered from Sirius’s house and is enraged by this betrayal of his godfather’s memory.
Aragog
A giant spider living in the Forbidden Forest. A friend of Hagrid’s, he becomes ill and dies during Half-Blood Prince. It’s during his funeral that Harry manages to persuade Slughorn to reveal a critical memory about Voldemort’s time at Hogwarts.
Eileen Prince
Snape’s mother, from whom he derives the moniker “Prince.”
Pansy Parkinson –
A Slytherin student and Draco’s love interest, who takes particular pleasure in bullying Hermione.
Dolores Umbridge
A Ministry employee and former professor of Defense Against the Dark Arts, who used her position to suppress news of Voldemort’s return. Like many people associated with the Ministry, she is much more preoccupied with maintaining an official narrative than actually fighting Death Eaters.
Kingsley Shacklebolt
An Auror working for the Ministry of Magic, who is currently embedded in the Muggle Prime Minister’s office. He’s also a member of the Order of the Phoenix.
Viktor Krum
A professional Quidditch player and one-time competitor in the Triwizard Tournament. During his time at Hogwarts he briefly dated Hermione, a relationship Ron is still jealous of two years later.
Mrs. Cole
The manager of the orphanage where Voldemort grows up.
Crabbe
One of Draco’s sidekicks, who disguises himself as a young girl in order to keep watch while Draco uses the Room of Requirement.
Goyle
One of Draco’s sidekicks, who disguises himself as a young girl in order to keep watch while Draco uses the Room of Requirement.
Susan Bones
A Hufflepuff student, and the niece of Amelia Bones.
Madam Pomfrey
Hogwarts’ resident Healer, who runs the hospital ward and cares for students and teachers who suffer injuries and ailments.
Armando Dippet
Dumbledore’s predecessor as Headmaster of Hogwarts. Like many other teachers, he was taken in by the young Voldemort’s combination of talent and flattery. Only on Dumbledore’s advice did he refrain from hiring the young man as a Hogwarts teacher.
Demelza Robbins
A Chaser on the Gryffindor Quidditch team.
Madam Rosmerta
The proprietress of the Three Broomsticks. At the end of the novel Dumbledore discovers that Draco has placed her under the Imperius Curse and forced her to assist in his various plots, like passing the cursed necklace to Katie Bell and poisoning a bottle of mead intended for Dumbledore.
Leanne
Katie Bell’s best friend.
Jack Sloper
A Beater on the Gryffindor Quidditch team.
Parvati Patil
A Gryffindor student.
Zacharias Smith
A Hufflepuff student whom Harry dislikes for his smug and biased commentary during Quidditch matches.
Blaise Zabini
A Slytherin student who becomes a fixture at Slughorn’s parties and suppers, as a result of his famous mother.
Bellatrix Lestrange
Narcissa Malfoy’s sister, a prominent Death Eater. Unlike Narcissa, Bellatrix cares little about family ties and is obsessed with Voldemort to the point of mental derangement. In Order of the Phoenix she kills her cousin, Sirius Black.
Lucius Malfoy
Draco’s father, currently in Azkaban for supporting Voldemort during the battle at the Ministry of Magic at the end of Order of the Phoenix.
Igor Karkaroff
A former Death Eater and headmaster of the Durmstrang Institute, another Wizarding school that Viktor Krum attends. When Voldemort returns to life and summons his minions, Karkaroff tries to resist rejoining the Death Eaters and is murdered.
Mr. Ollivander
The owner of Diagon Alley’s wand shop and a prominent member of the Wizarding community. Early in the novel he’s kidnapped by Death Eaters, showing that Voldemort’s return will disrupt the most essential aspects of Wizarding life.
Florian Fortescue
The beloved owner of an ice cream shop in Diagon Alley. Early in the novel he’s kidnapped by Death Eaters, showing that Voldemort’s return will disrupt the most essential aspects of Wizarding life.
Madam Malkin
The owner of a robe shop in Diagon Alley.
Professor Flitwick
The Head of Ravenclaw House and Charms professor.
Professor Sprout
The Head of Hufflepuff and Herbology Professor.
Stan Shunpike
The conductor of the Knight Bus, who is falsely accused of being a Death Eater and imprisoned by the Ministry. Shunpike’s unjust detention reflects the Ministry’s desire to seem competent at any cost.
Argus Filch
The deeply unpleasant caretaker at Hogwarts.
Romilda Vane
A fourth-year Gryffindor, who tries to slip Harry a love potion in a box of chocolates.
Helga Hufflepuff
One of Hogwarts’ original founders.
Salazar Slytherin
One of Hogwarts’ original founders.
Rowena Ravenclaw
One of Hogwarts’ original founders.
Godric Gryffindor
One of Hogwarts’ original founders.
Moaning Myrtle
A ghost who haunts the Hogwarts bathrooms. In Half-Blood Prince Myrtle befriends Draco, taking pity on his growing anxiety and paranoia over his task from Voldemort.
The Fat Lady
An enchanted portrait who guards the entrance to Gryffindor Tower.
Nearly Headless Nick
One of Hogwarts’ resident ghosts.
Hannah Abbott
A Hufflepuff in the same year as Harry, and a member of Dumbledore's Army. She has to leave school when her mother is murdered by Death Eaters.
Amelia Bones
The Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. She is killed by Death Eaters.