- "Alecto, Amycus's sister, teaches Muggle Studies, which is compulsory for everyone. We've all got to listen to her explain how Muggles are like animals, stupid and dirty, and how they drive wizards into hiding by being vicious toward them, and how the natural order is being re-established."
- —Neville Longbottom on Alecto's teachings.[src]
Professor Alecto Carrow was a witch, sister of Amycus Carrow and a Death Eater. Alecto fought in the First Wizarding War along with her brother. They did not search for Lord Voldemort after his first downfall, but were forgiven after Voldemort's return in 1995, and joined the Death Eater ranks in the Second Wizarding War. After the fall of the Ministry of Magic in 1997, she was made Muggle Studies professor, which became a course on how Muggles "are like animals, stupid and dirty". She was also appointed Deputy Headmistress, alongside her brother. She liked to punish and torture the students who opposed them. In the evening of 1 May, 1998, shortly before the Battle of Hogwarts, she was Stunned by Luna Lovegood when she summoned Lord Voldemort's Death Eaters. She was then magically tied up in Ravenclaw Tower by Professor McGonagall. After the battle, she was likely sent to Azkaban along with her brother.
First Wizarding War
Alecto and her brother Amycus supported Lord Voldemort and became Death Eaters during the First Wizarding War. After Voldemort's downfall in 1981, they did not search for their master, believing that Voldemort was gone forever, and managed to avoid imprisonment in Azkaban.
Despite all this, the Carrows were among those who, after Voldemort's return, resumed their Death Eater activities. The two siblings were fairly active during the Second Wizarding War. Like Bellatrix Lestrange she admired Voldemort and detested blood traitors.
Second Wizarding War
Rebirth of the Dark Lord
Alecto and her brother were, most likely, among the Death Eaters that were summoned by Lord Voldemort to the churchyard at Little Hangleton on 24 June, 1995, as their absence wasn't noted by Voldemort himself.
Battle of the Astronomy Tower
In the evening of 30 June, 1997, Alecto and her brother participated in the assault on Hogwarts Castle, orchestrated by Draco Malfoy, that resulted in the death of Albus Dumbledore. When the Death Eaters arrived at the top of the Astronomy Tower, where Dumbledore was trapped, Alecto gave "wheezing giggles", as her brother made fun of the Headmaster. When Severus Snape arrived on the scene, he cast the curse that ended the Headmaster's life.
On Snape's orders, she and her brother quickly left the Tower, panting excitedly. In the corridors below, Alecto and Amycus retreated after Snape with their arms over their heads, under attack from blasts by Minerva McGonagall. As the brother and sister descended the Marble Staircase, Harry took a shortcut and arrived in the grounds before them.
As the two Death Eaters closed in after him, one of them cast a spell that sent Harry to the ground. Harry hit one of them, who stumbled and fell, tripping up the other, with another Impediment Jinx. The two siblings then ran to the gates, and Disapparated beyond the school boundaries.
Appointment at Hogwarts
- Neville Longbottom: "It's been… Well, it's not really like Hogwarts anymore. Do you know about the Carrows?"
- Harry Potter: "Those two Death Eaters who teach here?"
- Neville Longbottom: "They do more than teach. They're in charge of all discipline. They like punishment, the Carrows."
- Harry Potter: "Like Umbridge?"
- Neville Longbottom: "Nah, they make her look tame. The other teachers are all supposed to refer us to the Carrows if we do anything wrong. They don't, though, if they can avoid it. You can tell they all hate them as much as we do. […] I got this one for asking [Alecto] how much Muggle blood she and her brother have got."
- — Neville Longbottom tells Harry Potter about the Carrows, and his own recently acquired scars.[src]
On 1 August, 1997, the Death Eaters managed to stage a coup within the Ministry of Magic, thus gaining influence over all of wizarding Britain. A month later, on 1 September, Amycus and Alecto were made Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher and Muggle Studies teacher, respectively, as well as Deputy Headmasters under newly appointed Headmaster Severus Snape.
The Muggle Studies classes were made compulsory core classes. The curriculum was changed so that it now covered the Ministry of Magic's anti-Muggle propaganda; that Muggles were stupid and dirty, how they threatened the Wizarding world and how the "natural order" was being reestablished, instead of covering aspects of Muggle culture and science.
As Deputy Heads, the Carrows were put in charge of all punishment. The members of faculty were obliged to report any rule-breaking student to them, although they didn't if they could avoid it. Punishments given out by the Carrows included torture, via the Cruciatus Curse, as well as chaining students, and corporal punishment in the form of beatings and slashes with knives.
Dumbledore's Army, led by Neville Longbottom, spearheaded the resistance against the Carrows. Alecto made a slash on his face after he asked her how much Muggle blood she and her brother had. The group, now made illicit after the reenactment of the Educational Decree Number Twenty-Four, used to sneak into the corridors at night and put up graffiti on the walls with messages like "Dumbledore's Army, Still Recruiting". Michael Corner was caught releasing a first year the Carrows had chained up, and was violently tortured.
Once the Carrows realised they had no hold over Neville, they planned to kill him or send him to Azkaban. As the Carrows chased him, Neville chose the Room of Requirement as a hideout, and the rest of Dumbledore's Army soon followed in his footsteps, and moved into the room as the Carrows tried to hunt them all down.
By the evening of 1 May, 1998, news of Harry Potter, Ronald Weasley and Hermione Granger's break-in of Gringotts Wizarding Bank reached the student body; Terry Boot was beaten up by the Carrows for yelling about it in the Great Hall over dinner.
That same day, as Lord Voldemort became aware that Harry Potter, Ronald Weasley and Hermione Granger were hunting down and destroying his Horcruxes, he instructed Amycus and Alecto that Harry might try to get into the Castle and Ravenclaw Tower. At the Carrows' urgent request Professor Flitwick, Head of Ravenclaw House, let Alecto into the common room, where she stood guard and was tied up.
Alecto was keeping watch when Harry arrived with Luna Lovegood. She immediately touched her Dark Mark, letting Voldemort and all the Death Eaters know that they had got him. Alecto was immediately stunned by Luna, but Amycus demanded Minerva McGonagall to let him into the Tower. Once inside, he saw his unconscious sister but no sign of Harry, as both he and Luna were hidden beneath Harry's Invisibility Cloak. Aware that they were going to feel Voldemort's wrath if they did not hand him Harry, Amycus planned to pass it off on the students, and when Professor McGonagall objected calling Amycus and Alecto cowards in the process, he spat in her face. This caused Harry to use the Cruciatus Curse on him, which knocked him out. Minerva McGonagall used a spell to conjure a net, and the two siblings were tied up and hoisted into the air, where they were left dangling beneath the ceiling.
Neither Alecto nor her brother fought in the Battle of Hogwarts as both of them were kept tied-up at Ravenclaw Tower. It is likely that after the battle and the end of the Second Wizarding War they both were imprisoned in Azkaban for their crimes under Kingsley Shacklebolt's de-corrupted Ministry of Magic.
Alecto Carrow was a stocky little woman like the Weasley twins, with a wheezy giggle, much like her brother. Sloping-shouldered, she had stubby fingers and, as a Death Eater, she was branded with the Dark Mark on her forearm.
Personality and traits
Alecto was a sadistic woman who enjoyed punishing and torturing students, and did not hesitate to make a deep slash on Neville Longbottom's face when he insulted her. Alecto had strong pro-wizard beliefs, as she taught that Muggles were filthy, like animals. Apparently she was not very bright, as she needed Filius Flitwick to let her into Ravenclaw Tower. She was however somewhat more intelligent than her brother Amycus. Alecto also seemed to enjoy making fun of others, as she giggled at Albus Dumbledore during his last moments and called Harry Potter "witless" when he and Luna Lovegood fell for Lord Voldemort's trap. This also demonstrates her arrogance, since if she had stood quietly at Ravenclaw Tower, she could have Stunned an oblivious Harry and summoned Voldemort, thus preventing the Battle of Hogwarts and making the Death Eaters win the Second Wizarding War.
Magical abilities and Skills
"They're in charge of all discipline. They like punishment, the Carrows."
-Neville Longbottom, on the Carrow's love for punishing students.
Alecto Carrow was a Death Eater , making her a naturally skilled witch particularly in the dark arts. Alongside her brother Amycus, the Carrows have gained a nasty reputation within the wizarding world. Particularly during their stint as joint Deputy Headteachers at Hogwarts, as they severely punished students for any rule-breaking within the school.
Dark Arts: Being a Death Eater Alecto was a natural when it came to the dark arts. She showed particular skill in utilizing the Cruciatus Curse, as she used it as a common form of punishment during her time as a teacher at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. It can be assumed that Alecto was efficient in using the other Unforgivable Curses aswell although this is not certain as she is not shown to use either the Imperius Curse or the Killing Curse during any of the battles she participated in. It can also be assumed that Alecto was able to summon the Dark Mark , having it branded on her forearm like most Death Eaters. She used this same mark to summon Lord Voldemort when she found Harry Potter in the Ravenclaw Common Room.
Dueling: Alecto must have been a somewhat skilled duelist as she was an active participant in both the first and second wizarding wars and survived them both. She participated in the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, however, she was no match for the extremely powerful Minerva McGonagall, as she was forced to retreat with her arms over her head. She also wasn't quick enough to block Luna Lovegood's Stunning Spell upon discovering her and Harry Potter in the Ravencalw Common Room (although it should be noted she was attempting to summon Voldemort at the time and her focus seemed to be soley on Harry Potter).
Teaching Skills: Alecto was a Professor at Hogwarts, were she taught Muggle Studies. Her teachings conformed to the ministry propaganda that Muggles are filthy, stupid and like animals that have violently forced wizards and witches into hiding and that the natural order of things was being restored with wizards having supreme dominance over all muggles. Most of the students likely ignored her anti-Muggle teachings and some such as Neville Longbottom verbally opposed them, however these students would find themselves being severely punished if they did.
- The name, "Alecto", means "unceasing in anger". "Alecto" is known to have been derived from the earlier male name; "Alektos".
- In Greek mythology, Alecto was one of the Erinyes, also known as the Furies; they were the personifications of vengeance and pangs of conscience, and are known for being cruel and bloodthirsty towards wrongdoers.
- In English, the word; "Carrow", can refer to two places. "Carrow" in Norfolk, or "Carraw" in Northumberland. The first is assumed to have its name derived from the Old English word "carr", meaning "rock", and a word of Celtic origin; "hoh", meaning "spur of a hill". While the second appears to have been named either after the plural of the Old English word "carr", or after a mixture of a form of "carr", and another Old English word; "raw", meaning "row".
- It is also possible, that the surname was originally a shortnened version of the Cornish surname; "Nancarrow".
Behind the scenes
- Alecto is portrayed by Suzie Toase in the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and the first and second part of the film adaptations of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
- Actress Vanessa Stevenson doubled Suzanne Toase in the film adaptations of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
- "Carrow" is a harsh-sounding name and is reflective of "marrow", within the bone, possibly hinting at their bloodlust. It seems to have the same sound as "Voldemort," a fearmongering cold sound.
- Alecto's role in the films is diminished to a background one, with no speaking lines. In the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince she takes no active part during the Battle of the Astronomy Tower; she merely witnesses Dumbledore's death without a word and flees with the Death Eaters. In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, she only appears during the Meeting at Malfoy Manor, one of the first scenes in the film. In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, Alecto and Amycus are stunned during McGonagall and Snape's duel. Snape deflects two of McGonagall's curses at the Carrows, knocking them unconscious. Although, its almost certain that Snape intended for this to happen whilst making it look like an accident.
- In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (video game), she appears to be one of the enemies Harry has to fight. Suzie Toase also did the voice of the character for this game.
- A girl bearing a strong resemblance to Alecto was shown in the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince to have been a member of the Slug Club during Horace Slughorn's first tenure as Potions teacher.
- David Yates mistakenly called the Carrow siblings "the Carrow Twins", even though they were not.
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (First appearance)
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (film)
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (video game)
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (video game)
- LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - Chapter 2 (Spinner's End)
- ↑ On Pottermore - "New from J.K. Rowling: Pure-Blood".
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Chapter 12 (Magic is Might)
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - Chapter 27 (The Lightning-Struck Tower)
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (film)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Chapter 30 (The Sacking of Severus Snape)
- ↑ See this interview; "Samantha: Was snape the only death eater who could produce a full patronus J.K. Rowling: Yes, because a Patronus is used against things that the Death Eaters generally generate, or fight alongside. They would not need Patronuses."
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Chapter 28 (The Missing Mirror)
- ↑ "Are Alecto and Amycus (the two sibling Death Eaters) the Carrows mentioned by Snape in Spinner's End?" on J.K.Rowling Official Site
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - Chapter 33 (The Death Eaters)
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - Chapter 28 (Flight of the Prince)
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Chapter 11 (The Bribe)
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 14.2 14.3 14.4 14.5 14.6 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Chapter 29 (The Lost Diadem)
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - Chapter 12 (The Patronus)
- ↑ Suzie Toase to reprise Alecto Carrow role in Deathly Hallows
- ↑ See this picture
- ↑ "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -- Part 2" The Story of Snape
Alecto Carrow | Amycus Carrow | Antonin Dolohov | Augustus Rookwood | Avery (I) | Avery (II) |
Barty Crouch Jr. | Bellatrix Lestrange | Crabbe | Evan Rosier | Gibbon | Goyle |
Jugson | Lestrange | Mulciber (I) | Mulciber (II) | Nott | Rabastan Lestrange | Rodolphus Lestrange | Rosier | Selwyn | Thorfinn Rowle | Travers | Walden Macnair | Wilkes | Yaxley
|Death Eaters who Defected:|
|Death Eaters' allies:|
Vincent Crabbe | Golgomath | Gregory Goyle | Fenrir Greyback | Narcissa Malfoy (defected) |
Quirinus Quirrell | Scabior | Dolores Umbridge
Dementors | Giants (Golgomath's control) | Muggle-Born Registration Commission | Snatchers | Werewolves
|Professors: Quirinus Quirrell · Male Teacher · Charity Burbage · Alecto Carrow|
|Classrooms: Muggle Studies Classroom · Muggle Studies showroom · Fifth Floor classroom|
|Textbooks: Cooking the Muggle Way · Home Life and Social Habits of British Muggles · Moronic Muggles · Muggles Who Notice · My Life as a Muggle · The Philosophy of the Mundane: Why the Muggles Prefer Not to Know · When Muggles Attack|