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The Phoenix Lament

- Chapter 29
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The Harry Potter Canon

"I feel that if a single pupil wants to come, then the school ought to remain open for that pupil." -- Pomona Sprout


Ginny leads Harry to the hospital wing, where the Order discusses Bill, Dumbledore, Snape, and the events of the evening. We also learn that Fleur still wants to marry a disfigured Bill, and Tonks is in love with Lupin. McGonagall takes Harry to her office (formerly Dumbledore’s) and asks where he was, but Harry refuses to say; the heads of houses then arrive and discuss closing the school. Finally, as Scrimgeour arrives, Harry leaves to Gryffindor Tower, where he updates Ron on the Horcrux.

Calendar and Dates

The chapter takes place the same evening as the previous three and continues into the early morning hours of an evening in June.

Interesting facts and notes

"We all wondered ... but he trusted ... always ... Snape ... I can't believe it ..."

So McGonagall , along with some of the other professors and members of the Order, were sceptical of Snape's allegiance.

"And then - Harry did not quite see how it happened - both women were crying and hugging each other."

It seemed like Mrs. Weasley needed Fleur to give an emotional declaration of love to Bill in order to accept their engagement.

She let out a wail and, without waiting for the password, swung forwards to admit him.

It appears that the Fat Lady can let students to enter the Common Room without the password (at least when a tragic incident has occurred at the school).



Exceptional character moments

Minerva McGonagall shows great strength of character during this chapter. She has just heard of the murder of one of her closest friends and confidantes, yet she takes control of the situation; she asks Harry for details of the events, arranges a meeting with the Heads of the Houses to discuss the future of Hogwarts and meets with the Minister of Magic.

Memorable lines

"Dumbledore believed Snape was sorry James was dead? Snape hated James...."

"Well, I'm stayin'," said Hagrid, fat tears still leaking out of the corners of his eyes and trickling down into his tangled beard. "It's me home, it's bin me home since I was thirteen. An' if there's kids who wan' me ter teach 'em, I'll do it."

And he knew, without knowing how he knew it, that the phoenix had gone, had left Hogwarts for good, just as Dumbledore had left the school, had left the world ... had left Harry.

Words and phrases

Other Canon Notes



Characters Introduced

HBP 29 — The Phoenix Lament
Abbreviation HBP29
Canonicity Primary Canon


Harry's first reactions after Sirius and Dumbledore are murdered are quite similar. In both cases, he chases after the murderer and tries to harm them/stop them from escaping. His first thought is to avenge the person who was killed. The sharp contrast is the way in which Harry mourns after the battles end.

After Sirius died, Dumbledore tried to speak with Harry, but he was so angry about what happened, he screamed at Dumbledore and broke several of his possessions. He blamed Dumbledore for Sirius's death. Harry also blamed Dumbledore for keeping information from him and for keeping Sirius trapped at Grimmauld Place. Harry then blamed himself for being tricked by Kreacher and Voldemort. He only gains comfort  and acceptance after his conversation with Luna.

After Dumbledore is murdered, Harry shows anger and hatred when Snape is escaping, but once he is gone, Harry seems to be more in shock than anything else. Ginny brings him inside and back to present concerns. He is finds out how everyone else is doing. He tells everyone how the murder happened and who is to blame. He explains to McGonagall how the Death Eaters got into the castle, so she can prevent them from entering that way again. Harry also is given the chance to go to Dumbledore's funeral and mourn along with everyone else, something he is not able to do after Sirius dies. Being with Ginny, Ron and Hermione gives him comfort, but it is also the job Dumbledore gave him that leads him on. He mourns Dumbledore, but he realizes the best way to honour him is to finish what he started. Harry looks forward rather than backwards and choses a path forward with the hope his actions will prevent more innocent lives from being lost. - C.M.

Pensieve (Comments)

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The Harry Potter Canon