Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

by

J. K. Rowling

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James Potter Character Analysis

Harry’s father and Lily’s husband. Like Harry, James had black hair and a troublemaking streak when he was in school, aided by the fact that he was in possession of the Invisibility Cloak. James and Lily were both killed when Harry was just a baby, defending Harry from Voldemort. His and Lily’s love is vital to Harry, and Harry’s deepest desire is to see them again, which is why he sees their reflection in the Mirror of Erised. It is also revealed later in the story that James and Snape maintained a fierce rivalry when they were at school together, which is why Snape hates Harry so passionately.

James Potter Quotes in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

The Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone quotes below are all either spoken by James Potter or refer to James Potter. 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:
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Scholastic edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone published in 1997.
Chapter 1 Quotes

“He’ll be famous—a legend—I wouldn’t be surprised if today was known as Harry Potter Day in the future—there will be books written about Harry—every child in our world will know his name!”

“Exactly,” said Dumbledore, looking very seriously over the top of his half-moon glasses. “It would be enough to turn any boy’s head. Famous before he can walk and talk! Famous tor something he won’t even remember! Can’t you see how much better off he’ll be, growing up away from all that until he’s ready to take it?”

Related Symbols: The Sorcerer’s Stone
Page Number: 13
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 4 Quotes

“Then she met that Potter at school and they left and got married and had you, and of course I knew you’d be just the same, just as strange, just as — as — abnormal— and then, if you please, she went and got herself blown up and we got landed with you!”

Page Number: 53
Explanation and Analysis:

“See, there was this wizard who went…bad. As bad as you could go. Worse. Worse than worse. […] This wizard, about twenty years ago now, started lookin’ fer followers. Got ’em, too — some were afraid, some just wanted a bit o’ his power, ’cause he was gettin’ himself power, all right. Dark days, Harry.”

Page Number: 54
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 8 Quotes

“I don’t know, sir,” said Harry.
Snape’s lips curled into a sneer.
“Tut, tut — fame clearly isn’t everything.”

Related Characters: Harry Potter (speaker), Professor Snape (speaker), Albus Dumbledore, James Potter
Page Number: 137
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 12 Quotes

“It shows us nothing more or less than the deepest, most desperate desire of our hearts. You, who have never known your family, see them standing around you. Ronald Weasley, who has always been overshadowed by his brothers, sees himself standing alone, the best of all of them. However, this mirror will give us neither knowledge or truth. Men have wasted away before it, entranced by what they have seen, or been driven mad, not knowing if what it shows is real or even possible.”

Related Symbols: The Mirror of Erised
Page Number: 213
Explanation and Analysis:
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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone PDF

James Potter Character Timeline in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

The timeline below shows where the character James Potter appears in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1: The Boy Who Lived
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
...exist, because she and her husband are as “unDursleyish” as possible. Lily and her husband, James, have a small son who is about the same age as the Dursley’s toddler, Dudley,... (full context)
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
Professor McGonagall explains to Dumbledore that Lily and James Potter are dead, and that Voldemort tried to kill their son, Harry, as well, but... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
...forehead from Voldemort’s curse. Hagrid gives a tearful goodbye to Harry, howling in sorrow over James and Lily’s deaths. (full context)
Chapter 4: The Keeper of the Keys
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
...into a rage, saying that Lily had been a “freak.” She explains after Lily met James and they had baby Harry, Petunia knew that he would be just as “abnormal.” And... (full context)
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...year old, You-Know-Who went to Harry’s home—maybe because he thought he could persuade Lily and James to join him, or perhaps he just wanted them out of the way. You-Know-Who killed... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...be something strange about Harry, a good beating could cure him. As for Lily and James, he says, they were “weirdos,” and the world is better off without them. He also... (full context)
Chapter 9: The Midnight Duel
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
Rules and Rebellion Theme Icon
...hard, otherwise she may change her mind about not punishing him. But, she tells Harry, James would have been proud of him—he was an excellent Quidditch player, too. (full context)
Chapter 12: The Mirror of Erised
Rules and Rebellion Theme Icon
...no signature, Harry wonders who could have sent it, and if it really belonged to James. (full context)
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
...has glasses and untidy black hair. Harry realizes that these are his parents, Lily and James, and that the people around them are his extended family. They smile at him. Harry... (full context)
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
That night, Ron and Harry return to the Mirror. Harry once again sees Lily and James. But Ron can’t see anything, so Harry places him alone in front of the Mirror.... (full context)
Chapter 17: The Man with Two Faces
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
Humility and Self-Sacrifice Theme Icon
...not to be a fool, or he will meet the same end as Lily and James, who died trying to save Harry from Voldemort. He warns Harry not to let their... (full context)
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...for Harry: a leather-bound book of wizard photographs, all of which are of Lily and James. Hagrid had asked all of their school friends for photos, knowing that Harry didn’t have... (full context)