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Rufus Scrimgeour Character Analysis: Minister for Magic

Rufus Scrimgeour Character Analysis: Minister for Magic

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Rufus Scrimgeour was an Auror who eventually replaced Cornelius Fudge as Minister for Magic in 1996, following the acknowledgment that Lord Voldemort had returned. While relations between Scrimgeour and Harry Potter were strained, when tortured for Harry’s location, Scrimgeour refused to say anything. He was killed by Lord Voldemort who then took over the Ministry for Magic.

About Rufus Scrimgeour

BornPre-1960 – 1 August 1997
Blood StatusUnknown
OccupationAuror Minister for Magic
PatronusUnknown
HouseUnknown
WandUnknown
Zodiac SignLeo (speculative)

Rufus Scrimgeour Early Life

As a younger British wizard, Rufus Scrimgeour very likely attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He must have received very good marks to go on to join the Aurors office. By the 1990s, Scrimgeour had been made head of the Aurors office.

In 1996, when Lord Voldemort had returned but the Ministry of Magic was denying this, Scrimgeour was on the lookout for operatives of Dumbledore within the Ministry. He occasionally questioned Aurors Kingsley Shacklebolt and Nymphadora Tonks at this time, who were leading the search for Azkaban escapee Sirius Black. Of course, they were in Dumbledore’s Order of the Phoenix alongside Black.

Scrimgeour Becomes Minister for Magic

When Lord Voldemort’s return was finally exposed following the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, the wizarding community lost faith in the current Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge. Not only had he denied Lord Voldemort’s return, but he had tried to discredit Albus Dumbledore when he and Harry Potter were telling the truth about the Dark Lord.

The much harder Rufus Scrimgeour took over as Minister for Magic. Fudge took Scrimgeour to meet the Muggle Prime Minister and make the transition official.

The Prime Minister’s first, foolish thought was that Rufus Scrimgeour looked rather like an old lion. There were streaks of grey in his mane of tawny hair and his bushy eyebrows, he had keen yellowish eyes behind a pair of wire-rimmed spectacles and a certain rangy, loping grace even though he walked with a slight limp. There was an immediate impression of shrewdness and toughness; the Prime Minister thought he understood why the wizarding community preferred Scrimgeour to Fudge as a leader in these dangerous times.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

Nevertheless, Scrimgeour also seems to have distrusted Dumbledore. He assigned the Auror John Dawlish to follow Dumbledore whenever he was not at Hogwarts.

Scrimgeour Keeping Up Appearances

Scrimgeour’s principal policy for combatting Lord Voldemort seems to have been to make the wizarding community believe that the Ministry was being proactive and had the situation under control.

This included public arrests to show the public that they were finding Death Eaters. But this did lead to miscarriages of justice. For example, Knight Bus conductor Stan Shunpike was arrested as a Death Eater, despite the fact that he was clearly either innocent or a foolish pawn.

Scrimgeour wanted Harry Potter to cooperate with the Ministry as the “chosen one” in showing the wizarding world that everything was under control. In the first instance, he approached Albus Dumbledore, who refused to speak to Harry on his behalf.

One Christmas Day 1996, he visited the Burrow to speak with Harry and asked him to cooperate with the Ministry. Harry refused and Scrimgeour noted that Harry was “Dumbledore’s man” through and through.

Harry was revolted by the Ministry’s tactics and thought that they were doing no better than Fudge’s ministry when they were denying Lord Voldemort’s return.

Scrimgeour Following the Death of Albus Dumbledore

Following the death of Albus Dumbledore, Scrimgeour descended on Hogwarts with a delegation from the Ministry to attend the funeral. He sat in the front row alongside Minerva McGonagall looking “grave and dignified”. He used the opportunity to ask Harry once more to work with the Ministry, but Harry refused.

Rufus Scrimgeour then visited the Burrow again on 31 July to speak to Harry, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger about bequests they received in Dumbledore’s will. He thought it strange that out of all the people Dumbledore knew, he singled these three out in his will.

Scrimgeour had already delayed releasing Dumbledore’s effects for 31 days under the Decree for Justifiable Confiscation in order to examine the items bequested. He questioned each of them about why they thought Dumbledore might leave them these objects. They refused to share information with Scrimgeour, and at the time, were also unsure what exactly Dumbledore’s gesture meant.

Scrimgeour refused to give Harry Gryffindor’s Sword, which Dumbledore had also left him in his will, saying that it was public property and therefore not Dumbledore’s to give. Little did Scrimgeour know, the sword that he removed from the headmaster’s office was a fake.

Harry criticized Scrimgeour for wasting time scrutinizing Dumbledore’s things while he was covering up the recent escape of many Death Eaters from Azkaban. A vicious argument broke out.

Only the arrival of Arthur and Molly Weasley defused the situation and forced Scrimgeour to leave.

Rufus Scrimgeour Assassinated

The following day, on 1 August 1997, Death Eaters staged a successful coup within the Ministry of Magic. They had placed many high-ranking officials under the Imperius Curse.

Scrimgeour was brutally tortured for information on the whereabouts of Harry Potter. Despite the conflict between Scrimgeour and Potter, he refused to reveal any information and was killed.

Pius Thicknesse, the then Head of Magical Law Enforcement who was under the Imperius Curse, was made the new Minister for Magic.

The Death Eaters told the wizarding world that Scrimgeour had resigned, but Kingsley Shacklebolt used his Patronus to inform allies at Fleur Delacour and Bill Weasley’s wedding that he had been killed.

Rufus Scrimgeour Personality Type & Traits

Albus Dumbledore described Rufus Scrimgeour as a decisive, forceful personality and a man of action. He was a realist who would not underestimate the power of Lord Voldemort. But he was also very controlling, and you were either “with him or against him”, and he understood the importance of appearances.

Rufus Scrimgeour Zodiac Sign & Birthday

We do not know Rufus Scrimgeour’s birth date, but he must have been born before 1960. He is described as having the look of a lion, and this, combined with his forceful personality, suggests that his zodiac sign may be Leo. People born under this sign are charismatic and assertive leaders, but they can prioritize appearance over substance.