We’ve been mispronouncing Voldemort’s name all this time

The title is really He Who Must Not Be Named (Correctly).


Aja Romano

Internet Culture

Published Sep 10, 2015   Updated May 28, 2021, 12:19 am CDT

If you’re a huge Harry Potter nerd, you’ve probably wondered before why Voldemort is pronounced “Vol-deh-mort” instead of “Vol-deh-mor.” 

The Dark Lord’s name is obviously based on the French word for death, mort, which has a silent ‘t’ at the end. So why do the movies and fans all say the ‘t’?

If this conundrum describes you, then today is your day to feel validated: J.K. Rowling confirmed the ‘t’ should have been silent all along.

Her Highness has actually mentioned the pronunciation issue before, in earlier interviews that predate the movies. Apparently by the time the first film came out in 2001, she’d given up the battle and let the fans decide Voldemor(t)’s linguistic fate.

We have to say, though, that we think Voldemort is much scarier with the ‘t.’ Even if Lord Voldemort himself apparently doesn’t agree:

Maybe we should all return to calling him He Who Must Not Be Named. Fear of a name only increases fear of the name itself, sure, but mispronouncing it? 

Even Dark Lords deserve better.

H/T Tech Insider | Photo via museled/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)

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*First Published: Sep 10, 2015, 12:33 pm CDT