ByMichelle Siouty, writer at

There are countless words that can be used when describing Sirius Black. As one of the most dynamic characters in the Harry Potter series, Black's character was under constant scrutiny. From being a Gryffindor born to a house of Slytherins, to having his public image besmirched by a wrongful murder accusation, he faced trials and tribulations paralleled only by those of Harry Potter.

Despite the many obstacles he faced, his faith in the goodness of the world never wavered and his accusers only strengthened his resolve. That's why the character Sirius Black, the eternal "Black" sheep, deserves a post dedicated to his honor.

The Family Pariah

A young, shaggy Sirius with Lily and James
A young, shaggy Sirius with Lily and James

Black had unfortunately been misunderstood from day one. Raised in a Slytherin, pure-blood obsessed household that Walburga and Orion Black ruled over with much scrutiny and high expectations, a young Sirius grew to abhor his dark family.

The Black Family Tree
The Black Family Tree

Whereas the majority of Blacks were placed in Slytherin, Black was sorted into Gryffindor in 1971. Much to his family's disdain, Black purposely hung Gryffindor posters in his room which he bewitched to permanently stick to the walls, along with pictures of Muggle girls in bikinis and motorcycles.

We all go through a rebellious phase, but Sirius truly had a point to prove to his parents.

Hogwarts, A Home

At Hogwarts, however, Sirius finally felt he truly belonged as he found his best mates for life in Gryffindor. Along with James Potter, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew, Black and his friends referred to themselves as "The Marauders." Finally, a place Sirius felt he could truly belong.

Padfoot, Prongs, Moony, and Wormtail
Padfoot, Prongs, Moony, and Wormtail

Black's care and love for his friends was evident upon the group discovering a grave secret of Lupin's. Instead of de-friending Lupin once they learned he was a werewolf, the three friends became unregistered Animaguses and transformed into animals to ensure that Lupin didn't hurt anyone while out of control.

A Brother From Another Mother

When tension with his family burst, Sirius Black left his parents' home at age sixteen, and was thankfully welcomed with open arms into the Potters' household where he and James grew up like close brothers.

Sirius' parents were so infuriated, they blasted a hole where his face was on the family tree, as well as his uncle Alphard, who felt for his nephew and left him a large fortune.

Fighting For Good

Post graduation from Hogwarts, Sirius Black joined the Order of the Phoenix to help fight against Lord Voldemort along with his fellow "Marauders." As times grew dark and treacherous, Black began to suspect Remus Lupin as a spy and continued to heavily confide in Peter Pettigrew, a decision he would regret for the rest of his life.

Peter Pettigrew
Peter Pettigrew

It is astounding that a man as phenomenal as Black, fighting to take down evil, could even have any relations to a family whose values lined up so well with Lord Voldemort's.

A Fateful Night

Upon hearing that Lord Voldemort had targeted the Longbottom's and the Potter's, Sirius asked Peter Pettigrew at the last minute to be the Potter's secret-keeper for the Fidelius Charm, as he would be a less obvious choice.

One night, Sirius found Pettigrew missing from his hiding spot and James and Lily murdered by Voldemort. An enraged Sirius finally hunted down Peter Pettigrew with the intent to kill.

Lily protecting a baby Harry
Lily protecting a baby Harry

Sirius underestimated Peter Pettigrew who quickly proclaimed Sirius as the killer in front of a group of witnesses, before killing 12 Muggles with an explosion, and transforming into a rat, leaving behind a severed finger as evidence to frame Sirius for the crime.

12 Years A Prisoner

Sirius was sent to Azakaban for the murders of Pettigrew, the Muggles, and for assisting Lord Voldemort. While in Azkaban for twelve years, Sirius kept a clear mind from the Dementors by reminding himself of his innocence and transforming into a dog to lessen their effect on him.


Imagine being locked away in a tortuous prison for over a decade when really not guilty. I know it would drive me mad to know the entire wizarding world, and even the Muggle world, thought of me as a Death Eater when I was nothing of the sort.

The Great Escape

When Sirius spotted a picture of Peter Pettigrew as a rat on the front of the newspaper sitting on Ron Weasley's shoulder, Black became obsessed with tracking him down and killing him.

With nothing to lose, Sirius transformed into his Animagus dog form and became the first person to escape Azkaban.

The Wizarding World's Reaction

I could never imagine trying to correct a situation where an entire world hated me and believed I was an insane, villainous monster. If we thought living in the Black household was bad, this was a million times worse.

The Big Reveal

Finally, Sirius Black was able to snatch Peter Pettigrew, disguised as the pet rat Scabbers, in the Shrieking Shack; dragging along Harry, Ron, Hermione, Lupin, and Snape.

After years of being marked a traitor and a Death Eater, Sirius finally revealed Pettigrew to be the back-stabbing, two-timing dark accomplice to Voldemort. What a relief it must have been to get the truth off his chest.

Lupin transforming into a werewolf
Lupin transforming into a werewolf

They decided not to murder Pettigrew and take him to the Ministry to confess the truth. Sadly, just as Black was asking Harry if he'd like to live with him, Lupin, who had forgotten to take his Wolfsbane Potion, transformed into a werewolf as the full moon appeared, causing Pettigrew to escape.

Sirius' Second Escape

Sirius and Buckbeak escape
Sirius and Buckbeak escape

Still heralded a malevolent Judas, Harry and Hermione were able to help Sirius escape from the Dementors and go into hiding, until the day they could gather the proof of his innocence again.

It was probably slightly shocking and beautiful for Sirius Black to see his best friends' son not only help him survive, but fully believed his story when the entire wizarding world had been feeding wrong information into his ears.

Sirius In Hiding

Being forced to go into hiding seems bad enough. But being forced to watch over the dark house you grew up detesting is even worse. As the Order of the Phoenix used the foreboding house on Grimmauld Place as headquarters, Sirius was reminded of his unpleasant family, their elitists beliefs, and he felt useless in aiding the Order.

Being out in pubic was hardly an option when the wizarding world considered him a criminal, so Sirius sulked and felt restless and trapped, while many witches, wizards, and Muggles slowly disappeared or turned up dead.

The Second Wizarding War

Voldemort, aware of the bond between Harry and Sirius, implanted a fake vision of Sirius being tortured in the Department of Mysteries, causing Harry, Ron, Hermione, and a few friends to look for him. After dueling on their own for a while, the Order plus Sirius was finally called in by Snape to support the young ones.

Excited for some action, paired with the ability to finally help the Order properly, Sirius proved to be a valiant fighter. Ultimately, Sirius was hit with a spell by his own cousin, Bellatrix Lestrange, causing him to fall into behind the Veil in the Death Chamber. Harry always felt guilty for his death, as he fell for Voldemort's trap and had dragged everyone into the Ministry in the first place.

Post-Mortem Redemption

It is true that Sirius died the way he would have wanted to: fighting evil and surrounded by his friends. It is heartbreaking that no matter how hard Sirius tried to prove his innocence, he wasn't pardoned for the crimes he didn't commit until after his death. He wasn't able to be just a normal man without being a target for the vast majority of his life on Earth.

Although Sirius Black was the outcast of his family, and later society, he never lost sight of his focus to defeat Voldemort and protect his friends and Harry. His strength, bravery, and tenacity shows that Gryffindor blood ran through his veins.

[Source: Harry Potter Wikia]


Latest from our Creators