As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. We also participate in other affiliate programs and are compensated for referring traffic and business to them.
By the sixth book of the Harry Potter series (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince), fans were unfortunately already used to their favorite characters starting to die. After grieving over the death of Sirius Black, Harry Potter’s godfather, they had to face another unexpected loss – about the most important and greatest wizard of all time, Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore. He was killed by Severus Snape, but why did Snape kill Dumbledore? You can find the answer in this article.
Severus Snape killed the Hogwarts Headmaster because he was asked to do it by Dumbledore. Along with this, the Hogwarts Headmaster was about to die and with this act, he would prove his loyalty one more time.
If you decide to stay with us, you will find out (some will just remember it) what were the real reasons Professor Snape killed Dumbledore, what’s behind the whole story of Dumbledore–Snape relationship, and why Dumbledore trusted Severus so much. Let’s go!
Why did Snape kill Dumbledore?
There were two main reasons why Snape killed Dumbledore. First of all, the Hogwarts’ Headmaster was already dying and with this act, he would show him mercy and loyalty for the last time.
Why did Dumbledore let Snape kill him?
Upon learning that he had no more than a year to live, and in an attempt at preventing a humiliating and agonizing death, Dumbledore requested Snape to kill him when the time came. He wanted Snape to remain a trusted member of the Death Eaters, as well as to prove Lord Voldemort his loyalty and show him that he hadn’t failed.
Also, being familiar with the fact Lord Voldemort has ordered Draco Malfoy for killing him, Dumbledore wanted to protect Draco’s soul. He knew Draco wouldn’t be capable to fulfill the task. As a good teacher, he has always been, he didn’t want to allow the committed murder affects one of his students in any way.
Why was Dumbledore already dying?
He was already dying because of the curse of the Marvolo Gaunt’s ring.
Marvolo Gaunt’s Ring was the inheritance of Salazar Slytherin and Cadmus Peverell. It was a gold ring inset with a black stone, which was actually the Resurrection Stone, the symbol of the Deathly Hallows.
For years, the signet ring had passed from father to son until Tom Riddle stole it from Morfin Gaunt (Marvolo Gaunt’s son and Tom’s uncle), and framed him for murders of the Riddle family.
As the only heir, Tom Riddle decided to make the Ring into his second Horcrux, instead of wearing it. Tom placed a powerful curse upon the Ring – anyone who dared to wear it, would have been killed at once.
When Dumbledore found the Marvolo Gaunt’s Ring, he immediately recognized it as the Resurrection Stone, one of the Deathly Hallows. Wishing to use it to redeem his family and make amends for his past mistakes, Dumbledore put on the Ring. It began to take effect almost immediately and nearly killed him.
Thanks to his amazing skills, he had been able to contain the curse from spreading any further. Anyone else in his place would die instantly.
Dumbledore returned to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to find Snape. As the Potion Master, Severus was able to manage this issue, with a thick golden potion and a few incantations. As well, he didn’t miss to rebuke Dumbledore for his act – that kind of wizard must not be foolish in any way.
Although Snape’s knowledge of the Dark Arts enabled him to slow the spread of the curse, it would have ultimately killed Dumbledore within a year.
Besides the Ring, another thing that contributed to Dumbledore’s death.
Searching for Horcruxes, Dumbledore finally found one in a cave on the small island. As he promised, he took Harry Potter with him, who would help him to destroy the Horcrux.
The Horcrux has been protected with The Emerald Potion and if someone wanted to get it, he would have to drink the potion.
The Emerald Potion, also known as the Drink of Despair is the potion that causes fear, delirium, and extreme thirst. The potion will not kill the victim, it just makes them very weak and vulnerable.
No matter what happened, Dumbledore ordered Harry to help him drink it. Despite Dumbledore being in great pain, Harry managed to get him to drink it all before he fell unconscious.
Why did Dumbledore trust Snape so much?
Dumbledore’s relationship with Snape was open and close but he didn’t trust Snape completely. Snape felt responsible for Harry Potter’s mother, for her death caused by Lord Voldemort. He had no one else to turn to, except Dumbledore, to keep Lily safe.
This was the right reason and a proper time for Dumbledore to take advantage of Snape’s sense of guilt and initiated him into the Order of the Phoenix.
So, Snape became a double agent. As a spy for the Order of the Phoenix, he continuously updated Dumbledore about the movements and acts of the Death Eaters.
On the other hand, Snape did a great job in the role of Lord Voldemort’s spy, supplying him with all of the information about the Order. He provided only the information received from Dumbledore.
As we said before, Dumbledore’s confidence in Snape was not unconditional. Dumbledore did not fully trust Snape to reduce any damage that could occur if Snape was somehow compromised.
Snape did not like Dumbledore’s secrecy and was offended by his lack of faith in his abilities. What bothered him the most is the fact he had been used in Harry Potter’s destruction, whose mother was the love of his life.
Despite Dumbledore having faith in Snape’s abilities, he refused to offer him the post of professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts. Lord Voldemort failed to obtain the position, and therefore Snape has to be protected from his curse. Dumbledore finally agreed to give him the post, as Marvolo Gaunt had put a deadly ring on his finger, knowing that he would be widely regarded as a sorcerer.
After the Marvolo Gaunt’s curse and the agreement he made with Snape to kill him, Dumbledore finally granted him the post of the future Professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts.
Dumbledore was aware of the fact that after Snape killed him, the whole wizarding world would condemn him and force him to step down as the Professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts.
Despite the fact Snape killed Dumbledore, it was agreed that he would do so. When Professor Snape died, we found out that his deep love for Lily Evans caused his redemption with the magnificent result – to protect the precious boy destined to kill the biggest enemy of the wizarding world, Lord Voldemort.
What did Dumbledore say to Snape before he died?
“Severus… please…” These were the last words Dumbledore said to Snape before he used the Avada Kedavra curse and killed the Headmaster of Hogwarts.
In the beginning, we thought the phrase meant, “Please, Severus, help me!” but the truth was different. The ending of book seven “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” revealed that Dumbledore was dying and that he had arranged that Snape would administer the final kill.
Finally, when the time came for Snape to actually kill Dumbledore he hesitated, regardless of their previous agreement, so Dumbledore had to beg Severus to end his life.
So, the real meaning of the phrase was: “Severus, please kill me… right now.”
How did Snape feel about killing Dumbledore?
Snape was angry at Dumbledore for being tempted by the Ring, knowing it contained a curse.
Actually, he didn’t want to kill Dumbledore but he had to do it. Firstly, because he had to keep a promise he had given Dumbledore earlier. As well, it was an act of mercy, as Dumbledore was already dying, from the curse he received because of the Ring.
So, Snape killed Dumbledore but he didn’t cause his death. The curse and the potion did it. Nobody forced Dumbledore to put on the Ring neither to drink the potion.
Dumbledore caused his own death and Snape just finished his life.
Snape’s motivation was merciful, intending to spare Dumbledore from a humiliating and painful death in the future.
The Battle of the Astronomy Tower and the death of Albus Dumbledore had a major impact on the wizarding world. The only wizard Lord Voldemort had ever feared and who had the power to oppose him was finally dead. The battle showed that there was no longer a place safe from the Death Eaters, as one of the Hogwarts’ students allowed them to enter and one of the teachers betrayed the school. Teachers were unsure if the school would remain open, so some parents dropped their children out of Hogwarts.
Unfortunately, this one was a little bit sad topic to write about (we believe to read as well).
The Headmaster of Hogwarts knew that he had to leave because of his visions of the future wizarding world and the curse we have already mentioned. He also knew that hard times were coming for Hogwarts but that there were people who would fight for, until their last breath.