Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

by

J. K. Rowling

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Petunia Dursley Character Analysis

Harry’s aunt, Vernon’s husband, and Dudley’s mother. Petunia is also Lily’s sister, and she has a deep resentment towards Lily, which carries over into her treatment of Harry. Thinking that wizards (like her sister) are “freaks,” Petunia is cruel to Harry and essentially makes him a servant in the home, while totally spoiling her own son, Dudley.

Petunia Dursley Quotes in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

The Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone quotes below are all either spoken by Petunia Dursley or refer to Petunia Dursley. 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

Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you’d expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn’t hold with such nonsense.

Page Number: 1
Explanation and Analysis:

“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 2 Quotes

The problem was, strange things often happened around Harry and it was just no good telling the Dursleys he didn’t make them happen.

Page Number: 24
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:
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Petunia Dursley Character Timeline in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

The timeline below shows where the character Petunia Dursley 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
...normal” lives. Vernon Dursley is a large, “beefy” man who works at a drilling firm. Petunia Dursley is thin and blonde and tall. Mrs. Dursley has a sister, Lily Potter, whom... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Petunia, by contrast, has had a “nice, normal day.” Vernon tries to act as though his... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
Dumbledore tells McGonagall that Harry will be entrusted into the care of his Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon. McGonagall is appalled, saying she has been watching them all day, and... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Humility and Self-Sacrifice Theme Icon
...the best place for Harry, and he will leave a letter so that Vernon and Petunia can explain everything to Harry about what’s happened when he’s older. McGonagall wonders why Dumbledore... (full context)
Chapter 2: The Vanishing Glass
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
Ten years later, on Dudley’s birthday, Petunia raps on the door to Harry’s tiny room in the cupboard under the stairs. Harry... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...unique scar in the shape of a lightning bolt on his forehead, which, according to Petunia, is from the car crash in which Harry’s parents died. (full context)
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
...has only thirty-seven—one less than last year. He is about to throw a tantrum when Petunia tells him that they’ll buy him two more presents when they go out later in... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...can’t take Harry for the day while the rest of the family celebrate Dudley’s birthday. Petunia, Vernon, and Dudley are all furious. Dudley starts to cry, saying that Harry spoils everything.... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
...though he understands why Vernon doesn’t believe him: strange things often happen around Harry. Once, Petunia had cut his hair to be almost bald, but his hair had miraculously grown back... (full context)
Chapter 3: The Letters from No One
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
...straw hat, and a walking cane. Harry tries to stifle his laughter as Vernon and Petunia beam with pride at their son. The next day, Harry finds Petunia dyeing Dudley’s old... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...a letter, and Vernon promptly snatches it away. He reads it, his face turning red. Petunia then reads it and nearly faints. They yell at the boys to get out, though... (full context)
Magic, Difference, and Belonging Theme Icon
...and Dudley out into the hall and slams the door. Harry listens to his and Petunia’s conversation, as they worry how someone might know where Harry sleeps in their house. Petunia... (full context)
Power, Greed, and Desire Theme Icon
Humility and Self-Sacrifice Theme Icon
...Instead, Vernon tells Harry that he’s getting too big for his cupboard, and he and Petunia want Harry to move into Dudley’s second bedroom, which Dudley has been using to store... (full context)
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
Vernon, Petunia, Harry, and Dudley arrive at a gloomy hotel outside of a big city, but the... (full context)
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...one can deliver mail to this house in the middle of a storm. Vernon and Petunia claim the single bed in the shack, Petunia makes Dudley a bed on the sofa,... (full context)
Chapter 4: The Keeper of the Keys
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Petunia flies into a rage, saying that Lily had been a “freak.” She explains after Lily... (full context)
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...of violet light erupts, and Dudley grows a pig’s tail, poking through his trousers. Vernon, Petunia, and Dudley quickly flee into the other room in fear. (full context)
Chapter 6: The Journey from Platform Nine and Three-Quarters
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Harry spends a final month with Vernon, Petunia, and Dudley. They no longer torment Harry, but they have also stopped acknowledging his existence... (full context)
Chapter 12: The Mirror of Erised
Love, Family, and Friendship Theme Icon
...first is a wooden flute that Hagrid has whittled. The second is from Vernon and Petunia: fifty pence, which he promptly gives to Ron once he sees how excited Ron is... (full context)