Why Does Harry Potter Have a Lightning Bolt Scar and How Did He Get It?

Harry Potter has a scar on the right side of his forehead, and the scar is shaped like a lightning bolt which he got as a result of a killing curse that Lord Voldemort attempted to murder him with when he was only 15 months old. That scar bonded him to the dark Lord in a bizarre way and contributed to his eventual defeat of his arch-nemesis.

If you are a fan of the Harry Potter books or the movies, there are a number of things that stand out from the storyline, which was made popular by author J.K. Rawling, including Dumbledore’s cloak or Ron Weasley’s flying car. Another very important and interesting factor in the movies and books is the lightning-shaped scar on Harry Potter’s forehead. Let’s see how he got it.

How Did Harry Potter Get His Scar?

According to J.K. Rawling, on October 31, 1981, Lord Voldemort, also known as the Dark Lord, made an attempt on the life of then 15-month-old Harry Potter by casting the Avada Kedavra Killing Curse. His plot failed miserably in large part due to the ultimate sacrifice of Harry Potter’s mom, who intervened to save her baby from what would have been certain death, leaving baby Harry with a scar that is shaped like a lightning bolt.

The how and the when of the lightning bolt scar on Harry’s forehead have been established, but the answer to a follow-up question, which a lot of fans of Harry Potter might not have a clear answer to, of why did Lord Voldemort want Harry Potter dead in the first place? That will be answered shortly.

Harry Potter Lightning Bolt Scar

According to the books, Lord Voldemort was a very powerful wizard who wielded his considerably more powerful arsenal of magic terrifyingly against his fellow wizards who were in Great Britain. All these happened before Harry Potter was born, and everyone lived in mortal fear of the dark lord.

As events continued to unfold, Voldemort came across a prophecy that predicted his defeat at the hands of a young boy, and like all typical villains, he set about making sure that the prophecy would never be fulfilled. Voldemort, however, had one challenge, and that was the fact that he could never fully understand the full scope of the prophecy. On closer inspection, he finds out that the prophecy could be referring to either Neville Longbottom or Harry Potter.

Whether by a stroke of genius or good old-fashioned fate, Lord Voldemort chose to go after Harry Potter. To his utmost dismay and disappointment, the boy’s mother intervened, and Lord Voldemort was temporarily vanquished in the process. Harry Potter, on the other hand, ended up with just the lightning-shaped scar on his forehead.

What Side is Harry Potter’s Scar On, Left Or Right?

As previously mentioned, Harry Potter’s lightning bolt scar is on the right side of his forehead. Throughout the series, Harry sustained some injuries on other parts of his body, including one on his right hand after an altercation with Dolores Umbridge, a ministry employee. The popular Wizard also sustained an injury on his forearm after he was bitten by the mythical snake, Nagini.

Harry Potter Lightning Bolt Scar

The snake bite reportedly didn’t leave a scar as Hermione had put Dittany, a magical potion, on it. Harry also has a right-cheekbone scar, but we don’t know the origin of that scar. All the scars on Harry Potter’s skin affected him in one way or the other, but none had as much influence as the scar on his forehead, which had been left there by Lord Voldemort’s killing curse.

Harry Potter’s Killing Curse Turned Him into a Horcrux

Harry Potter may have survived the attempt on his life when he was just a 15-month-old baby by the dark lord Voldemort which temporarily destroyed Voldemort in the process. But the dark lord was far from finished with his nemesis. For years, while Harry Potter was ignorant of the magic in his bloodline, the scar was just that, a lightning bolt-shaped scar.

Unknown to him, lord Voldemort had turned Harry Potter into a Horcrux. A Horcrux is simply a host of a fragment of a dark witch’s or a dark wizard’s soul, which allows the dark wizard to live on even if their original bodies had been seriously damaged. It was considered to be the most terrifying part of dark magic.

Being a Horcrux of Lord Voldemort was something Harry fully came to understand when he started accessing his magical abilities. It gave the dark Lord access to Harry Potter’s mind and he had to find a way to combat it. It also twinged and hurt whenever Voldemort was close by or whenever Harry was exposed to danger from him or his sinister disciples.

On a number of occasions, Lord Voldemort tried to lure harry into dangerous situations by sending him false images of his loved ones under attack, only for Harry to show up at those places and end up being attacked by the dark lord himself or his overzealous and equally dangerous followers like the Death Eaters.

Being a Horcrux Came With Some Advantages and Disadvantages For Him

Seeing the trouble and pain being a Horcrux of the dark lord brought to Harry Potter, Dumbledore impressed on him the need to take lessons in Occlumency, an obscure but highly useful branch of magic that helps to prevent one’s mind from external penetration.

Harry didn’t exactly excel at his Occlumency classes because of the mutual dislike between him and his teacher, Severus Snape. The young wizard had to come up with a different way of dealing with and potentially eradicating the access that Lord Voldemort had to his mind.

It must be noted that being a Horcrux was not all bad for Harry Potter because the fragment of the Dark Lord’s soul in him also granted him access to the latter’s thoughts as well. It also prevented him from dying from the fatal consequences of attacks like Nagini’s bite.

Harry Potter Lightning Bolt Scar

As earlier stated, Harry Potter found a way to moderately control the part of the dark lord in him, and he did so by focusing on the grief and love of loved ones like Hermione and Dobby. This brought a lot of distress and pain to Lord Voldemort whenever he did so and gave him a little bit of edge in the deciding battle between them.

Fearing that being a Horcrux of the dark lord was something he had to deal with for the rest of his life, Harry Potter confronts Lord Voldemort for one last showdown. Believing Harry to be vulnerable, Lord Voldemort once again struck him with the killing curse. Harry’s reaction to the killing curse was what neither he nor Voldemort expected as it ended up destroying the portion of soul belonging to the dark lord in Harry Potter.

With the burden of being a Horcrux gone, Harry Potter launched one final assault on Voldemort, and this time, he defeated the dark lord once and for all. Another benefit of no longer being a host to an unwanted dark wizard was that Harry was finally free from the pain and distress associated with the scar.

Hugo Wright
Hugo Wright
Hugo has extensive professional writing experience and has been writing and editing articles on multiple platforms for several years now. Away from work, he is a football addict who loves to catch up on his favourite pastimes.


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