What would the Harry Potter series have been like without prejudice? We may remember the novels for giving us a gateway to the fantastic world of magic, but the wizarding world was filled with corruption, bigotry, and extremism. It wasn’t apparent up until perhaps Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, but the issue of blood supremacy had been mentioned right from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
Certain families were acknowledged as purebloods and while Harry’s social circle always played down the importance of being a pureblood, even those people agreed there was something worth mentioning about being one. This was a mentality engrained within every witch and wizard who was raised among magic, and what family is better to promote such bigotry than the Malfoys and the Lestranges? Both families were connected closely, both my marriage and by blood. While the Malfoys were bigoted, they weren’t crazed and over-the-top as the Lestranges.
There’s something purely vile about this family. The Malfoys displayed doubt, love, and humane qualities, while the Lestranges only ever showed loyalty toward the insane ideologies of Voldemort. These ideologies had existed long before Voldermort’s birth even. The Fantastic Beasts series has given us further insight into the family history of the Lestranges, and all of it is awful at best. It’s a wonder how such a family was held in high regard purely due to their status as purebloods.
Spoiler Alert! We’re either assuming you’ve watched Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, or you don’t mind having the plot spoiled for you.
Here are 20 Things You Didn’t Know About the Lestrange Family.
20 The Lestrange Vault
The vault we saw the golden trio infiltrate in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows wasn't just any vault handed out to secure Voldemort's Horcrux; the vault had belonged to the entire Lestrange family.
Although Bellatrix is the one credited as the owner of this vault, it was only hers due to marriage rather than her own possession. It's clear Voldemort trusted the family to guard his most prized possession. Along with the Horcrux, the vault also displayed the wealth the family had accumulated over the last several decades, or even centuries.
19 The Sham Marriage
Although it wasn't much common knowledge Bellatrix was a Black by birth, her status as a Lestrange was also only due to a marriage of convenience. Bellatrix never held any love for her husband, in fact, the only reason she even married the man was because it was expected of her to marry into a pureblood family.
This is also the reason why we never saw Bellatrix interact with her husband; they just never had a connection with one another save for sharing the name. It’s also a testament to how much she didn’t care for him seeing as she was unwilling to have children with him to carry on the pureblood gene.
18 The Sacred Twenty-Eight
In the wizarding world, there are certain families that are etched into history due to their status as being completely pureblood. As the population grew and more wizards began marrying Half-Bloods, or Muggles and Muggle-Borns, the purebloods became more and more scarce. Due to this, Twenty-Eight families remained, and they were known as the Sacred Twenty-Eight.
These families had defied continuing their lines as anything other than pureblood and were known for this. The Lestrange family is among these families. As of current times, a few of these twenty-eight families have eventually filtered out, and the Weasleys whose pureblood status has been tarnished after the marriages of Harry and Hermione into them.
17 Leta's Parentage
The Lestranges have a twisted sense when it comes to bringing children into the world. While Bellatrix had the consent of her husband to have Voldemort’s daughter, Leta Lestrange was conceived in even worse conditions.
Her father imperiused the already married Laurena Kama and then took her. To top it all off, Lestrange ended up marrying the woman. Despite technically not being married (considering Laurena was married to someone else at the time), it was considered as such. This is something similar to Voldemort’s own conception where his mother had kept his father under a love potion; except that Voldemort’s mother never married an already married person.
16 Bellatrix And Snape's Gang
Although Bellatrix grew to loathe Snape as seen in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Bellatrix and Snape initially had a very amicable relationship. At Hogwarts, the two had been part of a Death Eater squad.
Lily wasn't wrong when she chided Snape for hanging out with the wrong crowd. Bellatrix was one of the influences for Snape to fully join the Death Eaters after graduating. It's not known whether Bellatrix and Snape were close to the degree that he had attended her wedding into the Lestrange family, but it wouldn't be a surprise if he did seeing that he was especially close to Voldemort.
15 The Family Dates Back Centuries
The earliest known ancestor in the Lestrange clan, Radolphus, was born in the early 1800s. This makes the family at least around two hundred-years-old as of now. The ancestry didn’t begin there, however, as Pottermore reveals that the Lestrange family, being part of the purebloods families, went as far back as the Middle Ages.
The family is descended all the way from Salazar Slytherin, although it’s not known when the Lestrange name began, thus making them trace several centuries in the past. Slytherin’s awful views also lasted these centuries and the Lestranges were more than happy to embrace them.
14 Disinheriting Family Members
Like the Black family, the Lestranges didn't take kindly to being associated with anything other than purebloods. The Blacks were notorious for burning off faces from their family tree if even one of them was born a squib or married into a Muggle household.
The same way, the Lestranges practiced this too as Mr. Weasley pointed out that pureblood families were all notorious for disowning or not acknowledging any Muggle heritage. It’s a good thing too considering Bellatrix’s personality, the crazy witch might just have tracked down every non-pureblood member of the extended family if she learned the existence of any one of them.
13 Lestranges Are Related To Longbottoms And Weasleys
Speaking of burning family members off the map, the Lestranges also don't brag about the fact they have an extended family of purebloods. Why don't they do that? That would be because they are also related to well-known blood traitors. As mentioned above, the sacred twenty-eight make up the pureblood bloodline and it hasn't been possible to keep this up without some families being related.
To this end, the Lestranges are also related to pureblood families like the Weasleys, Malfoys, Blacks, and Longbottoms. Perhaps someone should have mentioned this factoid to Draco before he chose to insult Ron and Neville.
12 The Only Female Death Eater From The Family
While the Lestranges have been known to be among the Death Eater clan, they haven't gone headfirst into it. The Lestrange women weren't known to be Death Eaters, although they did support their men being initiated into the faction.
The only woman to defy this is, of course, is our most well-known bag of crazies, Bellatrix Lestrange. She was also notable for being the only general in Voldemort's army. Bellatrix's 'honor ' is also noteworthy as she is only one of two Death Eaters to be women - the other being the female Carrow twin.
11 Meaning Of The Name
Lestrange is a French name, and this carries a meaning with it. It might sound regal and a cut above the rest, but the name's meaning translates to 'The Strange One'. It's befitting of this family too as all the people we have seen thus far affiliated with it haven't exactly been sane in the head. Bellatrix isn't even a Lestrange by birth and she amped up her craziness after getting married.
Leta Lestrange, while not being insane, definitely showed aspects of being a strange and mysterious person. Meanwhile, Bellatrix's husband was the strangest of them all considering the guy was never seen and didn't even mind his wife having someone else's child.
10 Inherent Evil
The Lestrange family's only known trope is of them being villainous and supporters of Voldemort. But that still doesn't mean it's the name or family that has to blame for evil actions.
Bellatrix was simply an insane woman who happened to fall madly in love with the evilest wizard in creation. She didn't become evil because of marrying into the Lestrange family, Bellatrix was inherently evil as the wand she chose attested to being 'unyielding', a perfect one for the person with no remorse or empathy. Bellatrix's actress also termed her with a sadistic personality disorder.
9 Leta Lestrange's two loves
As it happened, it seems as if another Lestrange is a 'good' person. Leta Lestrange completed her sacrifice in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, thereby redeeming herself for the treatment she had doled out on Newt Scamander where the young fellow had been expelled from Hogwarts because of her.
Before she sacrificed herself, Leta said 'I love you' to either one of the Scamander brothers. As of yet, we do not know if she was referring to Newt or his elder brother. But we do know a Lestrange is capable of genuine love.
8 The Great Aunt
While the pureblood families are connected in some way for sure, this is generally accepted to usually be through marriage rather than by blood. However, Zoe Kravitz, the actress who plays Leta Lestrange, has claimed that Leta and Bellatrix are definitively related.
Apparently, Leta is meant to be the great-great aunt of Bellatrix. However, this is ambiguous as Bellatrix is a Black by birth rather than a Lestrange. It's possible that Bellatrix may very well be related to Leta by blood (read on further to know how) but it's unlikely this relation will ever be explored seeing that Leta predeceased Bellatrix's birth by several decades.
7 The Minister Of Magic
The Lestranges penchant for being glory hounds most likely comes from their lineage of which at least one ancestor who had a position of absolute power. Rodolphus Lestrange, the known patriarch of the family, held the position of Minister of Magic.
As we saw the Minister ruling with complete power, a lot of which was abused in the Harry Potter novels, it can be reasonably understood that Radolphus had the grip on the wizarding world in his time back in the late 1800s. Without a doubt, the family held their esteemed Minister ancestor in absolute regard.
6 Absolute Loyalty
The Lestranges seem to exist only to serve Voldemort, or at least that's what it appears to be like seeing that we only ever hear of them when a Voldemort matter is in question. In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Bellatrix and her husband were seen for the first time in Dumbledore's pensive during the trial flashback.
In this scene, it became clear the Lestranges never minded going to Voldemort because they believed they were doing their rightful duty to the Dark Lord. It's also known that the Lestranges were the only Death Eaters to even look for Voldemort after he fell to Baby Harry, while the other Death Eaters dispersed.
5 Voldemort’s Classmate
Although she remains the most famous Lestrange associated with the Dark Lord, Bellatrix was far from the first person from the family to be under his command. This may seem kind of gross considering Voldemort and Bellatrix had a child, but it would appear that Voldemort was actually the classmate of Bellatrix's father-in-law or someone close, as a student with the name was mentioned by Horace Slughorn to be part of Voldemort's gang at school.
These boys would be the Proto-Death Eaters and would bring forward the legacy that Bellatrix and others carried on. Thus, it can be assumed this student Lestrange was the first Death Eater in the family.
4 Leta's Unforgivable Act
Some might remember Leta Lestrange as the first love of Newt Scamander's life or as the person who sacrificed herself for the person she loved, but she was responsible for an act that was both vile and had far-reaching consequences.
As it turned out in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Leta substituted her baby brother for another boy in a nearby crib on a ship when she'd had enough of the child's crying. When the ship sank, the poor Lestrange child met his demise and drowned while the substituted child lived on. Who was that child? Credence, or as he is now known: Aurelius Dumbledore.
3 The Correct Pronunciation
Like mentioned already, the Lestrange name is of French origin meaning that its pronunciation isn't quite how we've accustomed ourselves to pronouncing it. Although the usual pronunciation of Les-Strange sounds very well phonetically speaking, the actual manner of uttering the name is Le-Strawnge.
This goes well with its French origins despite the sound of the name not sounding half as good as the usual, incorrect one. We're pretty sure that a lot of people don't bother with the correct pronounciation anyhow.
2 The End Of The Line
After Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, all the Death Eaters were rounded up and carted off to Azkaban prison. This meant the Lestranges weren't free to roam about and further their family name by marrying on.
It appears as if the family was already on its last legs as the only active Death Eaters with the Lestrange name were Bellatrix and her husband. As we know, Bellatrix didn't care for her husband and instead had a child with Voldemort, thereby naming that child 'Riddle'. It seems the entire family has ceased to exist now that no one remains to carry forward that name. Then again, no one's complaining about this either.
1 Marrying Within The Family
This was a given seeing that the purebloods had limited options to keep their bloodline that way, but the Lestranges never minded marrying their own. Like the Malfoys and Blacks, the Lestranges engaged in breeding within their own families as a last resort to maintain their blood status as pure.
This doesn't consider the fact that members of the family disowned non-magical or Muggle related cousins, but those who could claim to be completely pureblood had to live with being conceived from within their own families. It seems as if in the wizarding world, being married to your first cousins isn't something that raises eyebrows.
Are there any other facts about the Lestrange family from Harry Potter that you want to share? Let us know in the comments!