What exactly is a horcrux?  In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, what exactly is a horcrux?

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brendawm eNotes educator| Certified Educator

A horcrux is basically a piece of a person's soul stored in an object to keep it alive; therefore making the person more than mortal. Horcruxes are extremely evil objects, however, as it takes an ultimately evil act to create one--the act of murder--most wizards would never dare even speak of them. That is the reason Harry and Dumbledore have such a difficult time gaining any information about them. Tom Riddle had great aspirations to make himself immortal; therefore he not only created one horcrux, he set out to divide his soul into seven parts, believing that seven was the most magically powerfully number. With this in mind, he committed numerous evil acts in an effort to insure his immortality.  Hope this helps. Brenda

Wiggin42 | Student

A horcrux is a piece of your soul that you rip apart from your whole soul and place it in an object. The way to make a horcrux is through murder. Slughorn explains this process to Tom when Tom was a student at Hogwarts. Voldemort wishes to create seven so as to ensure his mortality. 

msnewbooklover | Student

"Of the Horcrux, wickedest of magical inventions, we shall not speak nor give direction–"


Horcrux is a powerful object in which a Dark wizard or witch has hidden a fragment of his or her soul for the purpose of attainingimmortality.[1] Creating one Horcrux gives one the ability to resurrect oneself if the body is destroyed; the more horcruxes one creates, the closer one is to true immortality. Creating multiple Horcruxes is suggested to be costly to the creator, by both diminishing their humanity and even physically disfiguring them.

boryung | Student

A horcrux is an object in which a piece of one's soul is stored. The only creator of Horcruxes mentioned in the series is Voldemort, who created six Horcruxes. Horcruxes are created by murder, which tears the soul apart. The only way to piece the soul back together is remorse for one's crimes. Not all murder creates Horcruxes, however; for example, Severus Snape's murder of Albus Dumbledore was a mercy killing and would not damage his soul. Voldemort, in order to make himself immortal, planned to divide his soul into 7, but actually divided it into 8 pieces when he attempted to murder Harry. His soul had become so frayed that a piece of it became a part of Harry when Voldemort attempted to cast the Avada Kedavra spell on him. The Horcruxes that Voldemort intentionally created were the diary, the ring, the locket, the cup, the diadem, and his snake Nagini. The final piece of Voldemort's soul was in his body.

michaellong | Student

It is an object that a person has hidden a part of their soul inside of. To create one, murder must be performed, and also a horriffic, unknown act must be commited. The only way to reattach the part of the soul is to feel true remorse for what you have done. Voldemort created seven to ensure immortality. They were:

  1. Tom Riddle's diary
  2. Marvolo Gaunt's ring
  3. Salazar Slytherin's locket
  4. Helga Hufflepuff's cup
  5. Rowena Ravenclaw's diadem
  6. Harry Potter
  7. Nagini
xxalannahxx | Student

A horcrux is a piece of a persons soul that is stored in an object to keep the person alive. Horcruxes are evil objects and it takes something really evil to create one the best way to create one would be murdering someone. Voldemort did not only create one but seven and he stored seven pieces of his soul into objects that meant something to him ranging from a diary to a snake. He split his soul into seven pieces because he believed seven was the magic number. Every time Harry destroyed one a piece of Voldemort died. For example in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets when Harry stuck the Basilisk's fang into the diary, Voldemort's memory as a sixteen year old was destroyed. Does that explain it?.

lostinthought | Student

 A horcruz is a piece of a person's soul that the person then chooses an item to place it in.  The item may be of value or a trinkit of somekind.  They are dark magic and tears a persons soul apart. In order for you to make one you have to kill a person, therefore ripping your soul in half. They are rarely brought up or mentioned for this reason. Tom Riddle wanted to know about them to be immortal.  Later as he becomes Voldemort he tears his soul 7 times b/c it is the most magical number.  So does that explain it enough?

leaannw1 | Student

A horcrux is an object (can be animate or inanimate) in which a part of a person's soul can be saved to help protect them from death.  It is evil and the is considered  very dark magic and most wizards don't speak of it.  Tom Riddle used 7 objects to try to protect his soul, ranging from a diary to a snake.  Each had to be destroyed seperately.  When it was destroyed, the part of the person's soul inside of it, died.