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Blood traitor

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The Weasleys, widely regarded as blood traitors, in Egypt

Pansy Parkinson: "Even you think she's good looking, don't you, Blaise, and we all know how hard you are to please!"
Blaise Zabini: "I wouldn't touch a filthy blood traitor like her whatever she looked like."
Pansy Parkinson and Blaise Zabini discussing Ginny Weasley[src]

"Blood traitor" is a derogatory term commonly used by elite pure-blood families to describe witches or wizards who sympathise with the non-magical community and/or willingly associate with other such sympathisers or with Muggle-borns. Other similar terms include "Muggle-lover"[1], "Mudblood-lover"[2], "Dunglicker", "Scumsucker", as well as "Mudwallower"[3], all of which refer disparagingly to those who are comfortable in the company of Muggles and/or Muggle-borns, whom prejudiced wizards and witches believe are dirty and inferior. The most notorious blood-traitor family was the Weasleys.

Types of Blood Traitors

"My whole family are blood traitors! That's as bad as Muggle-borns to Death Eaters!"
Ron Weasley on the Death Eater's opinions on blood traitors[src]
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Members were burned off the Black family tree for being a blood traitors

Among those usually considered to be "blood traitors" are:

Attitude towards "blood traitors"

Lucius Malfoy: "What’s the use of being a disgrace to the name of wizard if they don’t even pay you well for it?"
Arthur Weasley: "We have a very different idea about what disgraces the name of wizard, Malfoy."
Lucius Malfoy and Arthur Weasley in Flourish and Blotts in 1992[src]
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Arthur Weasley with Muggles Mr and Mrs Granger in Flourish and Blotts

Most pure-blood wizards and witches consider themselves to be the elite of the wizarding world, akin to royalty. They look down upon half-bloods, Muggle-borns, and half-breeds, as well as consider the Muggle world to be inferior to their own. Pure-bloods, as well as even half-bloods, who do not share this view are considered traitors to their own kind, hence the term "blood traitor". They are considered disgraces by pure-blood supremacists such as the Malfoys. Even then-Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge tend to ignore the blood-traitor family Weasleys due to the patriarch Arthur being a well-known Muggle-lover, which Fudge considered to be a telltale sign of one lacking in wizarding pride.

Elitist pure-bloods believe that it is a sign of weak magic to enjoy non-magical company[3], as well as seem to believe that some of the supposed dirtiness of Muggles and Muggle-borns will rub off on those who associate with them, thus they consider blood traitors to be "filthy" as well[4].

Some extremists consider blood traitors to be nearly as bad as the Muggle-borns they are prejudiced against. Bellatrix Lestrange, for example, claimed that "blood traitor is next to Mudblood in [her] book"[5], as well as her family often disowned and blasted off the family tree any members who could be considered blood traitors. Blood traitors might also be shunned by their families and acquaintances: for example, Bellatrix and her younger sister Narcissa Malfoy stopped seeing their sister Andromeda after she married a Muggle-born wizard, Ted Tonks.[5]

Lord Voldemort and his Death Eaters targeted blood traitors during the First and Second Wizarding Wars because they opposed their goals. When they were temporarily in control of the Ministry of Magic in late 1997 and early 1998, they kept blood traitors such as Arthur Weasley under surveillance. However, even most Death Eaters were reluctant to kill pure-bloods, even "traitorous" ones, if it could be avoided. The same situation existed at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry while Voldemort was in power.[6]

Examples

Anti-purity ideology

The following individuals were considered “blood traitors” for openly opposing the ideology of pure-blood supremacy.

“Blood Traitor” Reason(s)
Albus Dumbledore Dumbledore was once supremacist towards Muggles, but eventually he decided to give up his beliefs and decided to fight for Muggle rights. He advocated against blood status all his life and founded the Order of the Phoenix to protect Muggles and Muggle-borns from Lord Voldemort.
Beedle the Bard Beedle thought that Muggles were ignorant, but he still had pro-Muggle views which were adopted in his stories. He wrote stories about Muggles marrying pure-bloods which displeased people like the Malfoy family.
Carlotta Pinkstone Pinkstone was an activist who believed that Muggles had rights and they should know all about wizards. She performed magic in front of Muggles which led to imprisonments, presumably in Azkaban.
Charity Burbage Burbage had a strict Muggle-rights curriculum when she was Muggle Studies professor at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, for which Voldemort had her killed.
Godric Gryffindor Gryffindor ended his relationship with Salazar Slytherin because of Slytherin's supremacist views.
Idris Oakby Oakby would have been considered a traitor since she supported Squibs, who elitist pure-bloods also look down upon.
Order of the Phoenix members The Order opposed Lord Voldemort and his Death Eaters, opposed blood status and protected Muggles and Muggle-borns
Phineas Black Disowned for not sharing his family's beliefs in pure-blood supremacy.
Sirius Black Disowned for not sharing his family's beliefs in pure-blood supremacy.Later joined the Order of the Phoenix, a blood traitor organization

Pro-Muggle

Some pure-bloods were considered “blood traitors” for not only being unbiased about blood purity and towards Muggles, but for showing outright fondness and admiration for the Muggle world.

“Blood traitor” Reason(s)
Weasley family The Weasleys are known for not supporting the notion of blood purity and for associating with Muggles and Muggle-borns. Arthur Weasley was openly fascinated by Muggles.

By marriage or association

The following individuals were considered “blood traitors” because of their close association with Muggles, Muggle-borns or other blood traitors.

“Blood traitor” Reason(s)
Andromeda Tonks For marrying Muggle-born wizard, Ted Tonks.
Cho Chang Married a Muggle.
Eileen Prince Married a Muggle, Tobias Snape.
Ernie Macmillan Fought against Lord Voldemort and the Death Eaters during the Battle of Hogwarts.
Harry Potter Fought against Lord Voldemort and the Death Eaters during the Second War to oppose blood purity. Open supporter of Albus Dumbledore. Best friends with blood traitor Ronald Weasley and Muggle-born Hermione Granger. Married a blood traitor, Ginny Weasley.
Horace Slughorn Though he did have some bias, believing that pure-bloods were usually more talented at magic than Muggle-borns, Slughorn’s favourite students included Muggle-born witches Lily Evans and Hermione Granger, as well as he fought against Voldemort himself during the Battle of Hogwarts.
James Potter I Married a Muggle-born witch, Lily Evans.
Lavender Brown Dated Ronald Weasley, a "blood traitor", in 1996. Although they eventually broke up, she still fought against Lord Voldemort and the Death Eaters during the Battle of Hogwarts.
Merope Gaunt Called a “filthy little blood traitor” by her family because of her love for, as well as eventual marriage to, Muggle Tom Riddle Snr
Neville Longbottom Fought against Lord Voldemort and the Death Eaters during the Battle of Hogwarts.
Percival Dumbledore Percival would likely have been considered a blood traitor for his marriage to a Muggle-born witch, Kendra. However, when he was imprisoned in Azkaban for attacking Muggles and refused to reveal the reason, many believed it was because he was a supporter of the notion of blood purity.[5]
Reginald Cattermole Married a Muggle-born witch, Mary Cattermole.
Ron Weasley Married to Muggle-born Hermione Granger
Viktor Krum

Despite attending Durmstrang Institute, a school that does not permit Muggle-born students, Viktor became romantically involved with Muggle-born witch Hermione Granger for a time, as well as later remained her friend.

Appearances

Notes and references

  1. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  2. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 11 (Aboard the Hogwarts Express)
  3. 3.0 3.1 The Tales of Beedle the Bard (real)
  4. The various terms for blood traitors, such as Dunglicker, Scumsucker, as well as Mudwallower, all make associations with uncleanliness. Marvolo Gaunt also called his daughter a "filthy little blood traitor" for admiring a Muggle and Blaise Zabini once declared that he would never so much as touch a "filthy blood traitor" like Ginny Weasley, despite finding her physically attractive.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
  6. Neville Longbottom says of the Carrows in Chapter 29 of Deathly Hallows: "They don’t want to spill too much pure blood, so they’ll torture us a bit if we’re mouthy but they won’t actually kill us.” Given this statement, as well as the fact that the Weasleys were only in direct danger after Ron Weasley's help of Harry Potter was revealed to the Death Eaters, it seems that they were hesitant to kill blood traitors unless they were very rebellious.

See also

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