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Sirius Black Character Analysis: Personality Traits, Family & Patronus

Sirius Black Character Analysis: Personality Traits, Family & Patronus

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Sirius Black is a pure-blood wizard who was the best friend of James Potter during his time at Hogwarts. He was later accused of being a secret Death Eater and revealing the location of the Potter family to Lord Voldemort. For this, he spent 12 years in the prison of Azkaban.

He later escaped to track down the real culprit. He then lived in hiding, supporting his godson Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, until his death at the hands of his cousin and Death Eater Bellatrix Lestrange.

Sirius was born into the proud, pure-blood Black family, which collectively believed in the supremacy of pure-blood wizards. From a young age, Sirius revolted against his family. This resulted in him being the only member of the Black family to be sorted into Gryffindor, rather than Slytherin, at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

Sirius Black at Hogwarts

Sirius Black and Harry Potter

There he became best friends with fellow Gryffindors James Potter, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew. Upon learning that Lupin was a werewolf, the other three learned to become animagi so that they could keep Lupin company during his transformation. Sirius became a large black dog, and never registered his ability with the ministry of magic.

Becoming a young animagus is only one of the remarkable skills that Sirius showed at school. He and his friends also created the enchanted Maurader’s Map. This reveals all the secrets of Hogwart’s Castle, and the location of everyone within the school grounds.

Sirius and James were considered the most intelligent and talented wizards in the school and were also troublemakers akin to Fred and George Weasley. This made them arrogant, and they did not always treat their classmates well.

They bullied Severus Snape, who became a lifelong enemy of the group. Sirius, in particular, was considered a rebel, making him very attractive to the girls he ignored.

After school, Sirius was best man at James’ wedding to Lily Evans. He was later named the godfather of Harry Potter and gave him his first broom at the age of one. At the time, Sirius, James, and Lily also all joined the order of the Phoenix to fight against the rising power of Lord Voldemort.

Sirius Black and the Death of James & Lily Potter

Sirius Black and James Potter
Sirius Black and James Potter (left)

When it became apparent that Lord Voldemort was after the Potters, Dumbledore recommended that they go in hiding using the Fidelius Charm. This meant entrusting their location to one person, a “secret keeper” so that only the secret keeper could reveal their location. James wanted to use his best friend Sirius.

But Sirius, realizing that he would be the obvious choice, convinced James to entrust the secret to their other friend Peter Pettigrew and not tell anyone, even Dumbledore himself, so that Lord Voldemort would go after Sirius as a diversion.

This plan backfired as it turned out that Pettigrew was a secret Death Eater and revealed the location. This allowed Lord Voldemort to kill James and Lily, but then almost destroy himself while trying to kill Harry.

Arriving in the wreckage of the Potter’s home, Sirius immediately knew what had happened and went after Pettigrew to kill him. But Pettigrew created a distraction, killing 12 muggles with a blasting charm. He then cut off a finger and left it behind as evidence before turning into a rat and going into hiding.

Sirius, the presumed secret keeper of the Potters, was accused of all of Pettigrew’s crimes and thrown into Azkaban without a trial.

Unlike most Azkaban prisoners, who lose their minds due to the influence of the dementor guards who feed on the good feelings and happiness of their charges, Sirius was able to remain sane. This was partly because he knew his innocence, and since this was not a pleasant thought, the dementors could not take it from him. Plus, when things became too much, he could turn himself into a dog to ward off their effects.

Sirius Black Returns

Sirius stayed in Azkaban until 1993 when he saw a picture of Peter Pettigrew in a newspaper passed to him by Cornelius Fudge. Realizing that Pettigrew would be at Hogwarts, near Harry, he escaped from prison to get his revenge. He became known as the only person to escape Azkaban without assistance.

Sirius Black stalked Pettigrew over the course of the year, hunted by the ministry and dementors, who assumed that he was after Harry. He was eventually able to get his hands on Pettigrew and explain what really happened to Harry, Ron, Hermione, and his old friend Remus Lupin.

Unfortunately, thanks to Snape finding Sirius and wanting revenge, Pettigrew was able to escape, and Sirius was unable to clear his name. He had to go into hiding with the Hippogriff Buckbeak, which had also been sentenced to death.

Sirius left Europe and went into hiding, keeping in touch with Harry when he could. He returned to England when Harry told him that his scar was hurting. Sirius then stayed close by in Hogsmeade, in his dog form, when someone entered Harry’s name into the Triwizard Tournament. He supported Harry throughout the tournament, and the following year when Dolores Umbridge took over the school.

Sirius Black and the Order of the Phoenix

When Lord Voldemort announced his return to Harry and his loyal Death Eaters in the closing moments of the Triwizard Tournament, the Order of the Phoenix, which had opposed Voldemort during the first wizarding war, was recalled. Sirius joined their number, and gave the family home that he had inherited, 12 Grimmauld Place, to the order to use.

Sirius was still a wanted man and so was unable to leave headquarters. Snape often taunted him for how useless he had become. This caused him to live vicariously through Harry, encouraging him to do dangerous things, such as start the DA. Many other members of the Order accused him of confusing Harry with his old friend James.

When Lord Voldemort realized that Harry was occasionally seeing his thoughts, he planted the idea in Harry’s head that Sirius was being tortured in the Department of Mysteries. This was a ruse to send Harry there to collect the prophecy about the two of them, which can only be taken by the people that they are about.

Harry went to the Department of Mysteries with Ron, Hermione, Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom, and Luna Lovegood, where they were ambushed by Death Eaters. But Harry had given Snape a cryptic message, alerting him to where they were going. He passed this message on to the Order, who also arrived at the Ministry to help the children.

In the conflict that followed Sirius was struck down by his cousin Bellatrix Lestrange. She used an unknown curse on him which caused him to fall through the Veil in the Death Chamber.

It took Harry a long time to accept that Sirius was really dead, and Harry blamed himself. Sirius was one of the specters that Harry saw using the Resurrection Stone before facing Lord Voldemort.

About Sirius Black

Born1 Nov 1959-18 June 1996
Blood StatusPure-Blood
OccupationStudent, Order of the Phoenix Member, Prisoner, Fugitive
PatronusLarge Dog
Zodiac SignScorpio

Sirius Black Personality Type & Traits

Severus Snape and Sirius Black

Sirius Black is highly intelligent and talented, and also more than a little arrogant. This feeds his belief that the rules don’t apply to him, the ultimate rebel. Nevertheless, he is a brave and loyal person, as shown by the fact that he was placed in Gryffindor House.

Sirius had a naturally rebellious nature. This can be seen from a young age when he pursued an interest in muggles over the objection of his parents. As a result, he was the first and only member of the Black family not to be placed in Slytherin.

But his arrogance made him a bully, and one who often didn’t know limits. More than just taunting Snape, once he tried to send Snape to encounter Lupin while he was in dangerous werewolf form. Snape had to be saved by James Potter, but Sirius’ response was that Snape deserved it for snooping around.

While Sirius could look back on his previous behavior and admit that he had been wrong, he didn’t change much as he got older. This may be because he was placed in Azkaban in his early 20s and spent 12 years there. This did not give him a chance to grow up, but plenty of time to nurse old grudges.

When he left Azkaban, he felt trapped by his notoriety as a fugitive. He would often act out and do dangerous things, and encourage Harry to do the same. It is very likely that being with Harry reminded him of being with his old friend James. Sirius probably blamed himself for James’ death since it was his idea to entrust their location to Peter Pettigrew.

Sirius Black Zodiac Sign & Birthday

Scorpio Zodiac Sign Symbol with Dates

J.K. Rowling revealed on Twitter than Sirius Black was born on November 3rd 1959 which makes him a Scorpio. People born under this sign are highly intelligent, and don’t they know it. They can sometimes lean towards arrogance and self-entitlement, like Sirius.

We see Sirius’ suspicious side during the First Wizarding War, when he started to lose trust in his friend Remus Lupin, despite continuing to trust Peter Pettigrew implicitly. It is also clear that he didn’t trust anyone to help him clear his name in the aftermath of the deaths of James and Lily Potter.

Scorpios also tend towards dark thoughts and depression. When Sirius felt useless because he was unable to leave 12 Grimmauld Place he became depressed. He seems to have taken to drinking, as he smelled a bit like Mundungus Fletcher.

Is Sirius Black Pure Blood?

Sirius Black is a pure-blood wizard from the noble and most ancient house of Black. The family insisted on maintaining their bloodlines and demanded that family members marry people from other pure-blood houses, including their cousins. Blacks that married muggle-borns, or even sympathized with muggles, were often disowned.

Sirius ran away from his family when he was 16 years old and went to live with his friend James Potter. James’ parents Fleamont and Euphemia Potter adopted him as a son.

Sirius’ mother blasted Sirius off the tapestry of the Black family tree. But his uncle Alphard sympathized with him and left him a generous bequest when he died. This made him independently wealthy and freed Sirius from his family.

Sirius Black Animagus & Patronus

Sirius Black Werewolf

While still a student at Hogwarts, Sirius became an unregistered Animagus, along with his friend James Potter and Peter Pettigrew. They learned the skill to keep their friend Remus Lupin company during his werewolf transformation at the full moon. As an Animagus, Sirius turned himself into a large black dog. Sirius’ Patronus probably took the same form as he had an affinity with the animal.

We know that James Potter turned into a stag as an Animagus and that his Patronus was also a stag.

Werewolves are only dangerous to humans, so James, Sirius, and Peter could stay near Lupin when he was a wolf. The friendship they offered also helped Lupin to maintain his humanity while in wolf form. Black became a large dog, which resembled a Grim, and was also big enough to keep a werewolf under control.

Sirius Black Family Tree

Black Family Tree Harry Potter

Sirius, along with his younger brother Reginald, were the last males of the Black family. Both died young and childless. The portrait of Phineas Nigellus Black, their great-great-grandfather, noted this with sadness when he heard the news of Sirius’ death.

Sirius is the great-great-grandson of Phineas Nigellus Black, who was a headmaster at Hogwarts. He was a patriarch who had five children and at least 12 grandchildren. Though he did disown one of his children for supporting muggle rights.

Sirius descended from Phineas Nigellus on two sides. Phineas Nigellus had a son called Sirius who had three children, including Arcturus. Arcturus had two children, including Orion, Sirius’ father. Another of Phineas Nigellus’ sons Cygnus had four children, though he disowned one of them for being a Squib. His son Pllux was the father of Walburga, Sirius’ mother.

Sirius’ brother Regulus died before Sirius, in 1979, drinking the Draft of Despair while retrieving the locket Horcrux, though Sirius never knew this. Regulus pretended to be a Dark Wizard to get close to Voldemort and undermine him. He gave the stolen locket to his house Elf Kreacher to store at 12 Grimmauld Drive until it could be destroyed.

Is Sirius Black a Good Guy?

Sirius Black is ultimately a good guy who believed in standing up for what is right and was loyal to his friends until the end. But he also shows us that no one is perfect. He was arrogant, selfish, and a bully.

Sirius Black bullied Snape relentlessly as a young man and held a grudge for life. He also did not treat his house-elf Kreacher with much respect. This is consistent with how old wizarding families treat other magical creatures. He was reckless and was inclined to put his own desires ahead of what might be best for others.

Sirius Black is far from perfect, but he was willing to sacrifice his life for James Potter, and eventually did sacrifice it for Harry.

Why was Sirius Black after Harry Potter?

In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, it is assumed by the majority of wizards that Sirius Black escaped Azkaban to kill Harry Potter. This would be finishing what he had started earlier when he revealed the location of James and Lily Potter to Lord Voldemort.

But the reality is that it was not Sirius Black, but rather Peter Pettigrew who betrayed the Potters. Sirius escaped from Azkaban because he realized that Pettigrew was at Hogwarts. He was stalking Harry to protect him, and to track down Pettigrew, who was hiding in the form of Ron Weasley’s rat Scabbers.

How did Sirius Black Die?

Sirius Black and Bellatrix Lestrange
Sirius Black and Bellatrix Lestrange

Sirius Black died in a battle with Death Eaters in the Department of Mysteries at the Ministry of Magic. Bellatrix Lestrange, Sirius’ cousin, cast the final curse. It caused Sirius Black to fall through the Veil in the Chamber of Death.

Lord Voldemort lured Harry to the Department of Mysteries with a false image of Sirius being tortured there. Harry was determined to save his godfather and so went there with some of his friends from the DA. But the trap was to get Harry to retrieve the full prophecy about himself and Lord Voldemort. Only the people who the prophecy is about can retrieve them. Lord Voldemort then sent Death Eaters to take the prophecy from Harry.

Fortunately, Harry was able to pass a cryptic message to Snape alerting him to the danger of the Ministry. He passed this on to the Order of the Phoenix, and their members arrived to help the children. Sirius was the only member of the Order to die in the ensuing battle.

The conflict forced Voldemort to appear in the Ministry as well, where he was seen by a variety of witches and wizards. This forced the Ministry to concede that Lord Voldemort was back, something that they denied when Harry reported his return the previous year following the Triwizard Tournament.