No two wizards are created equal, and this means that each of them has a power level all their own. Although we meet many of them throughout the Harry Potter series, it’s sometimes a little difficult to distinguish who’s more powerful than who. Some may be adept at certain types of magic while others have abilities that give them the edge - but when it comes down to it, who are the ten most powerful wizards? Who would win above all others in a duel to the death?
It took some thought, but we’ve established a list of the ten most powerful in the Harry Potter series.
10 Harry Potter
It seems unfair to rank the main character of the series last, but it’s only fair. Although Harry is an extremely powerful wizard, there are some more powerful than him. Harry’s whole point is that his magical prowess isn’t necessarily the most important thing about him. He can love very deeply, he has incredible courage and daring, and he’s willing to do the right thing regardless of the personal consequences.
Having said that, he is also pretty powerful; he could produce a Patronus charm at thirteen, which is some seriously advanced magic. So he does make this list, but he’s not super far up on it. Sorry, Harry.
9 Sirius Black
Next comes Sirius Black. We rarely get to see Sirius using his magic, since he was stuck in Azkaban for most of the books until his death (rest in peace), but he’s said to have been extremely intelligent at school and he’s an Animagus. This means he can transform into a dog said to be the size of the bear, and it’s an extremely difficult process to go through.
We also know that Dumbledore invited him into the original Order of the Phoenix during the first war even though he was barely out of school, so this is another sign that Sirius is a seriously talented wizard.
8 Bartemius Crouch Jr.
Barty Crouch Jr. played a key part in the resurrection of Lord Voldemort, managing to disguise himself as Alastor Moody convincingly for a year; even fooling Dumbledore. He also had his father placed under an extremely powerful Imperius curse. Barty Sr. managed to break it eventually, but it shouldn’t make you underestimate Barty Jr. He was a very powerful, if deranged, Death Eater.
And don’t forget, the Death Eaters in the inner circle were very few in number, meaning he must have been trusted very much by Voldemort to get there. Do we need any more evidence that he was an extremely powerful wizard?
7 Kingsley Shacklebolt
Kingsley was an Auror, which is your first clue as to how powerful this man is. Aurors require extensive training and, not only that, the job itself is extremely difficult and it’s very easy to get hurt. Kingsley seemed to be very capable and also fought in the war against Voldemort and survived. To top it all off, he became Minister For Magic for a while.
All of this combined and the fact that he came out of the war relatively unscathed means we can draw the conclusion that he’s a fairly powerful wizard. After all, if he wasn’t, he probably wouldn’t have survived the situations he was put in.
6 Mad-Eye Moody
Mad-Eye Moody, or Alastor Moody as his real name is, was another Auror. Sadly, he died in the final installment of the series, but in his prime we can assume he was a seriously powerful wizard. Harry is told that half of the cells in Azkaban are full thanks to Moody, because he was a very talented and fearless dark wizard catcher.
Of course, he was pretty old by the time we met him in the series, and he was caught off-guard more than once; eventually resulting in his death. But we can only imagine what it would have been like to face off with him ten years before the series began.
5 Bartemius Crouch Sr.
Barty Crouch Sr. was very high up in the Ministry and had been in talks to become the next Minister For Magic. He spoke literally over a hundred languages. He pushed to make it legal for Aurors to use Unforgivable curses against the dark wizards they were trying to catch.
He was ruthless and in many ways, awful, but he was clearly a very powerful wizard.
It’s sad that we didn’t get to see more of Barty Sr. in his prime. Much like Moody, he was beyond it by the time the books rolled around, and caught off-guard when it came to his death.
4 Severus Snape
Severus Snape is a very controversial character for most. Although J.K. Rowling seems to defend him and is convinced he was a hero deep down, many can’t look past the abuse he put his students through for years on end - even if he did do the right thing in the war.
But what no one can deny is that he was very powerful.
He had a talent for potions, literally invented spells (Sectumsempra, Levicorpus) and he was a very powerful Occlumens; so much so that he fooled Voldemort into thinking he was on the Dark Lord’s side. That takes skill.
3 Gellert Grindelwald
The Big Bad before Voldemort, being explored in the Fantastic Beasts movies. Grindelwald had similar beliefs to Voldemort (magic is might, people of pure blood are better than those who don’t have it, etc), but was a little more political in the way he went about it. Although his reign of terror never got quite as dark as Voldemort’s, his forces spread all across Europe and he was powerful enough that he was a worthy duel partner for Dumbledore. That takes a lot.
He doesn’t quite get ranked above Voldemort for the simple reason that he was brought down a lot more easily, but he deserves a high place in this list nonetheless.
2 Lord Voldemort
Lord Voldemort: the most powerful dark wizard in the world, formerly known as Tom Marvolo Riddle.
Voldemort’s magical skill was almost unparalleled. No one was a match for him (aside from one person, who we’ll get to) and the strength of his spells and abilities were insane. As well as this, he managed to split his soul into seven pieces, making him briefly, seemingly, immortal.
It seemed an impossible task to defeat him at one point and it took the combined forces of a lot of people to do so; Harry wasn’t powerful enough on his own.
He was evil, but he was brilliant.
1 Albus Dumbledore
The only man who could have dueled Voldemort and won, the only wizard the Dark Lord ever feared: Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore.
Dumbledore seemed pretty harmless when first introduced - a kindly old man, the Headmaster of Hogwarts who just wanted the best for everyone. But we saw flashes of his power as the series went on, learned of a dark past, and learned of magical skill that surpassed even Voldemort’s. It was really due to Dumbledore’s planning that Voldemort died, even if Harry was the one to cast the killing blow - because Dumbledore is the most powerful wizard in the entire series.