Lily Potter
Lily Potter
Biographical information

30 January, 1960[1]


31 October, 1981[1]

Blood status


Marital status


Physical information




Hair colour


Eye colour


Skin colour


Family information
Family members
Magical characteristics
  • Willow
  • 10.25 inches
  • Swishy[4]






"Your mother was there for me at a time when no one else was. Not only was she a singularly gifted witch, she was also an uncommonly kind woman. She had a way of seeing the beauty in others even, and perhaps most especially, when that person could not see it in themselves."
Remus Lupin[src]

Lily Violet Potter (née Evans)[7] (30 January, 1960 - 31 October, 1981[1]) was a witch, the wife of James Potter and the mother of Harry Potter. She had a sister named Petunia, who is the guardian of Harry after Lily and James died.


Early lifeEdit


In her earlier life, Lily and her sister Petunia were quite close, frequenting the local playground together[2]. She enjoyed testing the limits of her underage magic, despite her parents warning her not to[2]. On one such incident, a neighbouring boy Severing Snape was watching the two sisters, and informed Lily of her magical powers, of which she had previously not known[2]. After that, they spent a large amount of time together[2].

The night before Lily came to Hogwarts, she and Snape accidentally stumbled upon a letter sent to Petunia from Professor Dumbledore, the new Headmaster of Hogwarts, informing her that she was not allowed because she could not do magic[2]. This upset Petunia, so much so that she called her sister a freak and spat at her when saying goodbye the next day[2]. That made Lily cried on the Hogwarts Express and did not want to talk to Snape because they made her sister cry.

First yearEdit

Lily began attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry on 1 September, 1971, and was sorted into Gryffindor house[2]. She boarded the Hogwarts Express with Snape, crying because of Petunia's earlier insults[2]. Snape cheered her up, reminding her that they were off to learn magic at last, and they found a compartment that was also occupied by James Potter and Sirius Black[2]. When Snape mentioned that he hoped Lily made it into Slytherin house, the two boys began to make fun of him, and she dragged him out[2].

Despite Snape's wishes, Lily was sorted into Gryffindor, and although Sirius recognised her from the train and offered her a spot next to him, she declined, remembering his bullying of her friend[2].

Throughout the year, a large number of the male population at Hogwarts became attracted to Lily, including James[8] and his new friend Remus Lupin, who did not compete with James for her affections[9].

Fifth yearEdit

In Lily's fifth year, she took her Ordinary Wizarding Level exams, and afterwards spent her time with some friends of hers, cooling her feet in the water of the lake[8]. However, she soon was distracted by the shouting caused by the bullying of her friend Snape by James Potter and Sirius Black, and she came over to yell at them[8]. Snape, humiliated that his true love would see him in such a position, called her a Mudblood, and she grew angry[8].

Later that night, she was informed by her friend Mary MacDonald that Snape would sleep outside if she didn't come out to talk to him[2]. Although he tried to apologise, she refused to accept it as she had for years defended accusations against him for his pure-blood supremacy[2]. She also was disgusted by his desire to join the Death Eaters[2] as she herself had already refused to join them[10].

Seventh yearEdit

By Lily's seventh year, she had already refused to join Voldemort's cause[10] and had also refused to date James Potter any number of times due to his continuous bullying of other students[8]. She did, however, approve of James's protectiveness of his friends, and when he finally matured in his seventh year[8], while the two were made Head Boy and Head Girl respectively[11], she finally accepted his request and the two grew to love each other[8].

In December of 1977, over the Christmas holidays, Lily and her new boyfriend James were invited to meet with Petunia and her fiancee Vernon Dursley at a small restaurant[12]. By the end of the evening, in which the two men had continuously joked about each other and insulted one another, the Dursleys stormed out while Lily was left crying[12].


Despite all that Lily had put Petunia through, she was still allowed at the Dursleys' wedding in 1978, on the condition that Lily not be allowed to the position of bridesmaid[12]. This hurt Lily's feelings greatly, as she could not understand what she had done wrong[12].

Although the Dursleys were allowed attending James and Lily's wedding, they chose not to[12]; indeed, the wedding was a very quiet affair, with only the best man Sirius Black attending[13].

Lily became pregnant in September of 1979[14], with the young couple consenting to have Sirius as the godfather[13]. Around that time, Sybil Trelawney, who was trying to be hired as the Divination teacher at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, met with Albus Dumbledore and made a prophecy stating that the boy born in the seventh month to parents who had thrice defied Voldemort would be able to kill said man[15].

Severus Snape, who used to be Lily's friend but at the time of the prediction was merely a Death Eater, heard the first half of the prophecy and loyally reported it to his master[2]. When Snape learned of the threat to Lily, the only one he had ever loved, he immediately informed Albus Dumbledore, who led the Order of the Phoenix, which James and Lily had joined directly after leaving Hogwarts[2].

Lily and James moved into a cottage in Godric's Hollow and put a vast quantity of protective spells on it, the most important being the Fidelius Charm[13]. While Sirius was the original secret keeper, he convinced the Potters to switch him with Peter Pettigrew, a friend of James and Sirius from school, without informing anyone[16].

When Harry was born, Lily sent a letter to her sister Petunia and brother-in-law Vernon announcing Harry's birth, to be her last, and after one look of disgust and contempt, Petunia threw it in the bin[12]. Unfortunately, Pettigrew soon betrayed the Potters to Voldemort out of cowardice, and he came to their cottage, the charms having broken, on Hallowe'en night[17].

Lily had just told James, who had been producing coloured puffs of smoke for their son, that it was time for Harry to go to bed, since he was not trick-or-treating[17]. James left his wand on the couch and went with Lily to put Harry to his cot upstairs[17].

Before they got there, Voldemort came in the front gate, and blasted the door open[17]. James gave Lily the baby and told her to run, while he held Voldemort off; this caused Voldemort mirth, as James did not have his wand[17].

Trapped upstairs, having barricaded herself into the nursery with boxes and chairs, she screamed as she heard Voldemort laughing, heard her husband die, dropping like a marionette whose strings had been cut[17].

When Voldemort came upstairs and blasted the chairs and boxes piled against the door aside, Lily threw her son into the cot behind her and attempted to shield him[17]. Despite Lily having refused to join him and having defied him thrice, Voldemort still displayed mercy, giving her the opportunity to spare her life in exchange for her son's[17]. She did not take her chance, shielding her son and begging for mercy, and although Voldemort thought for a split second of simply pushing her aside, he wanted to finish the whole family off and killed her as well[17].

She consequently did not live to see her son force Voldemort's third curse back at him, did not survive to watch her son grow up, but after her death he saw her in the Mirror of Erised[3], heard her screams whenever a Dementor approached him[18].

A statue had been erected in the middle of the town square at Godric's Hollow, depicting Lily, James and Harry together, a happy family once more[1]. James and Lily were buried together in a small marble grave, the white stone of which glowed in the night, so that the words could be easily read[1].

Physical appearanceEdit

Lily had long, dark red hair and almond-shaped, bright-green eyes[3]. She had pale skin and was described as being very pretty[8]. She was tall, and quite thin[19].


Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Chapter Sixteen - Godric's Hollow)
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Chapter Thirty-Three - The Prince's Tale)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Chapter Twelve - The Mirror of Erised)
  4. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Chapter Five - Diagon Alley)
  5. See this chat transcript
  6. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Chapter Two - Aunt Marge's Big Mistake)
  7. Wizards Challenge at Scholastic Site
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Chapter Twenty-Eight - Snape's Worst Memory)
  9. 2005 Leaky Cauldron Interview with JKR
  10. 10.0 10.1 See here
  11. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Chapter Four - The Keeper of the Keys)
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 Pottermore - New From J. K. Rowling: Vernon & Petunia Dursley
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Chapter Ten - The Marauder's Map)
  14. As a woman is pregnant for nine months before having the baby, and nine months back from July 1980 is September 1979.
  15. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Chapter Thirty-Seven - The Lost Prophecy)
  16. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Chapter Seventeen - Cat, Rat and Dog)
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 17.4 17.5 17.6 17.7 17.8 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Chapter Seventeen - Bathilda's Secret)
  18. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Chapter Five - The Dementor)
  19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (film)