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If the Resurrection Stone is a Useless Hallow

Updated on July 7, 2019
Mamerto profile image

Mamerto Adan is a feature writer back in college for a a school paper. Science is one of his many interests, and his favorite topic.

When you came to possess the three Hallows, one will become the Master of Death. The lethal Elder Wand, the precious Cloak of Invisibility, and the ominous Resurrection Stone. In the Harry Potter universe, the Elder Wand is a coveted piece, with wizards basically killing each other to get hold of the weapon. Though not perfect, it will amplify one’s magical skills. My personal favorite is the Cloak of Invisibility, which will grant the user stealth. Though it won’t conceal you from Dementors, staying invisible from any human adversary is more than enough of an advantage.

But people seem to dismiss the Resurrection Stone as the weakest among the Hallows.

Harry Potter chose the Resurrection Stone over the other Hallows. He never cared about power, and he already had a Cloak of Invisibility. Yet he wanted to bring back many people from the dead. He wanted to bring back his parents, Sirius Black, the other fallen Order of the Phoenix members, and any people closed to him. Having seen so many deaths, it is not surprising how Potter could have desired the Resurrection Stone more than anything else. Hermione is the practical type, and she chose the Cloak. Ron thought that it is alright to gain more power, hence he favored the Wand. But many felt the Cloak and the Wand are more than enough to give you true advantage, while you are better off without the Resurrection Stone.

What the Other Hallows Could Do

The symbol of the three Hallows.
The symbol of the three Hallows.

If you are an avid follower of the Harry Potter book series, you are well informed on what the Hallows are. Powerful magical items fabled to be created by Death himself. I won’t dig into the details on how they came to be. But in the wizarding world, the Hallows are mentioned in the Tales of Beedle the Bard. In the story “The Tale of the Three Brothers,” the Hallows are given by Death to the three Peverell Brothers. But it was the Peverell Brothers themselves who crafted the powerful magical items.

Antioch was the one who gave the wizarding world the Elder Wand, which is basically a high-powered wand. It was always likened to the One Ring in another popular fantasy universe, being an object of utmost power, and an instigator of violence. Wizards killed for it to gain its potent magic, and Antioch himself was murdered for the wand. Nevertheless, the advantage of an object that could amplify your power is obvious. In a duel, a high-powered wand will come in handy. And when you are out to conquer the wizarding world, you will surely need a Deathstick with you.

Zapping your enemy to death is one thing but staying invisible is another. In fact, I could say that by turning invisible, one basically negates the advantage of a high-powered wand. There is not much you can do when you can’t see your enemy.

In the legend of the Hallows, the Cloak of Invisibility is always looked down upon. Many will desire the Elder Wand, and even the questionable Resurrection Stone even more than the Cloak. But on the way I see it, the Cloak is the most effective Hallows in one’s possession. Ignotus was said to have evaded Death for many years thanks to his Cloak. In real life, you could evade murderous enemy, or infiltrate hostile territories (even steal food in the kitchen) with that amazing Cloak. And without question, it is the only Hallow that could be shared with others, or even protect others.

What the Resurrection Stone had Done so Far

Dumbledore putting on the signet ring with the Stone.
Dumbledore putting on the signet ring with the Stone.

Going back to the Tale of the Three Brothers, Cadmus Peverell was said to be highly arrogant and want to humiliate Death even further. Hence, he asked for an object that could bring back the dead. That’s how he ended up with the Resurrection Stone. He would later pay for his arrogance when he was driven mad by the Stone. When he used it to summon his dead lover and ended up with a half dead entity that is sad and cold. In the end he killed himself to be fully reunited with her.

At least that’s what the fable said.

Cadmus Peverell is the creator of the Resurrection Stone, possibly nobler than was mentioned in the story and never committed suicide.

His stone could bring back the dead, as was intended. At least as an unexplained entity, as it was never mentioned anywhere in the Harry Potter lore that it was truly the deceased.

And that’s it.

As what the fans noticed, the Stone never really gave the user any real advantage. In the case of the Wand, you have an increased killing power. And with the Cloak, you got invisibility on your side. Imagine what can you do if you have both?

And it is not clear to some fans what’s the point of having a stone that could only produce shades of dead people. Among all the Hallows, only the Elder Wand and the Cloak did any damage to Voldemort and the Death Eaters (Voldemort was struck by his own curse from the Elder Wand, and the Cloak helped Harry hunt down the Horcruxes).

It might be also possible that Harry could have defeated Voldemort with only two Hallows and without the Stone.

The Real Purpose of the Stone

Harry, with the people resurrected by the Stone.
Harry, with the people resurrected by the Stone.

The Stone never gave Harry Potter any advantage, but to be fair it did have its uses. First, we should consider that the original bad boy Gellert Grindelwald coveted the Resurrection Stone for its alleged power to make inferi. We all know what inferi are, they are basically the zombies of the Potter universe. It will be interesting to see what will happen if Grindelwald succeeded in his venture of making an army of undead. I mean it will change the Potter lore into a form of zombie apocalypse (but it will be another article).

Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.

Going back on the functions of the Stone, it could only produce shades of the dead. Shades that are only temporary. Hence Grindelwald won’t find any use for the Stone if he found it. And an army of Inferi is not exactly a decisive force as it will take a ball of fire to scare them off.

But that doesn’t mean that the Stone is completely useless.

Again, I searched the bowels of the internet to learn more about the Stone, and thankfully several pages provide the answer I seek. For one thing, it helped Harry accept his fate, facing his mortality as he marched towards Voldemort’s lair. Using the Stone, he summoned the shades of his parents and other deceased love ones, which gave him the courage to move on. What’s more, the shades had Patronus like effect, which warded off Dementors.

Overall

By summing it all, the Resurrection Stone might not be so useless at all. The shades of dead people it produced could shield someone from Dementors, and it played a role in making Harry the Master of Death (when he accepted his own death).

But then Harry could have accepted Death on his own without the Stone, and so far, the shades did no lasting damage to Voldemort. The two Hallows alone might be enough and Harry is better off without the Stone.

Hence the fans might have a point when they say that the Stone is useless.

Comments

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    • Mamerto profile imageAUTHOR

      Mamerto Adan 

      6 weeks ago from Cabuyao

      Thanks Jeremy! And I think I missed that one, about reviving murder victims to dolvr crimes.

    • Jeremy Gill profile image

      Jeremy Gill 

      6 weeks ago from Louisiana

      Great read, I wasn't even aware some considered the Stone useless. In addition to the powers you noted, the specters Harry summoned were said to produce a Patronus-like effect and shield him from Dementors.

      You could use the Stone to obtain knowledge; imagine how easy it would be to solve murders by reviving the deceased and simply asking who killed them.

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