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Complete, detailed, and amazing Reader's Guides
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Chapter Twenty-Seven:
The Lightning-Struck Tower

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Notes by Steve Vander Ark and Michele L. Worley
Synopsis and links by John Kearns

U.S. hardcover edition: pages 579-596
U.K. hardcover edition: pages 541-556
Timeframe: an evening in June, 1997 [Y17]

In which Harry and Dumbledore return to Hogsmeade and see the Dark Mark over Hogwarts. They fly to the top of the Astronomy Tower, where Draco appears and disarms Dumbledore, but can't bring himself to kill him and Dumbledore tries to convince Draco to come to the good side.  Before Malfoy can decide, though, other Death Eaters show up - including Snape, who kills Dumbledore himself, blasting the body off of the tower.

The Lightning-Struck Tower

Interesting facts and notes about the text of this chapter:

"The Lightning-Struck Tower", also known as "The Tower", is the name of one of the cards of the Major Arcana in a Tarot deck.

You almost killed Katie Bell and Ronald Weasley.

So it was Draco who arranged for the opal necklace to be planted on Katie and for the poisoned mead to be planted on Slughorn.

I had to mend that broken Vanishing Cabinet that no one's used for years.

Peeves broke a Hogwarts Vanishing Cabinet during Harry's (and Draco's) second year, at Nearly Headless Nick's request, to distract Filch from punishing Harry (CS8). This may be the same one; Draco probably would have known about that one.

Characters introduced in this chapter:

Characters returning in this chapter:

Characters mentioned in this chapter:

Settings and locations introduced or returning in this chapter:

Settings and locations mentioned in this chapter:

Exceptional character moments:

  • Still to come....

Spells and Potions:

Links and Resources:

Memorable lines:

  • "No, Draco," said Dumbledore quietly. "It is my mercy, and not yours, that matters now."

    Mercy by Marta T.

Strictly British:

  • afters

  • battlements

  • crenellated

  • pub

  • ramparts

Timelines/Calendar:

This chapter continues where the previous one left off, on an undetermined evening in June.

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