Bellatrix Lestrange was clearly a villain. She was cruel, she was known to kill and torture, she followed Voldemort and truly believed in his odious vision of how the wizarding world should look. In short, Bellatrix was about as evil as they come and had no redeeming features. Yet what went on inside her mind? While there is no excuse for any of her behaviour, we thought it would be interesting to rummage around that poisonous mind of hers and see what came to light…
We would be willing to gamble that Lord Voldemort took up most of the space in Bellatrix’s mind. Out of all of Voldemort’s Death Eaters, she was the most loyal and stayed with him right until the very end. In fact, she was the last Death Eater standing at the Battle of Hogwarts. While we’re not sure you could say she loved the Dark Lord (we don’t think she was capable of such an emotion), we would say that she was obsessed with him. We’re sure she spent hours and hours thinking about what she could do to make Voldemort happy – whether that was torturing Frank and Alice Longbottom into insanity, trying to retrieve the prophecy from the Department of Mysteries for him, risking the Dementor’s Kiss to break out of Azkaban or taking care of the supposed sword of Gryffindor for him.
If there is one person that Bellatrix tried not to waste time thinking about, it was her sister Andromeda. Unlike her other sister Narcissa, who married a respectable pure-blood and Death Eater, Andromeda brought disgrace to the Black family by daring to marry Muggle-born Ted Tonks. As a result, she was obliterated from the family tapestry that hung on the walls of Grimmauld Place and we’re sure Bellatrix tried to obliterate her from her mind too. She certainly made a point to never see her again. The same disdain she had for her sister extended to other ‘blood traitors’ in her family, like her cousin Sirius. Though we imagine Bellatrix liked to pretend that these shameful members of her family didn’t exist at all, they probably crept into her thoughts – even if it was just to think about destroying them for daring to betray their fellow pure-bloods. It was Bellatrix that killed Sirius, and we doubt she felt any remorse.
There’s no doubt about it, Bellatrix was one terrifying witch. The maniacal cackle, the breathy baby voice, her wild appearance – everything about her was unpredictable and a little disturbed. Remember the way she delighted in the death of Dumbledore and rampaged through Hogwarts? Or the way she gleefully tortured Hermione at Malfoy Manor? Bone chilling. We wouldn’t be surprised to find that she revelled in her ability to terrify others. While she didn’t put as much thought into her outward appearance as some, like her fellow Death Eater Lucius Malfoy, we would wager that she put a lot of time and effort into making her personality as scary as possible. Well… you can’t be Voldemort’s right-hand woman if your disposition is as soft and fluffy as a Pygmy Puff.
Now we all know that no witch, wizard or Muggle is inherently superior to another – and so did plenty of the wizarding world. However, for some like Bellatrix they were utterly enthralled with the idea that those who were considered pure-blood were better than everyone else. They were so confident in their belief that they dedicated their lives to following Voldemort and tried to change the world to fit their hideous vision. Bellatrix was no exception. We think her pure-blood mania was the other thing that took up most of the space in her mind (only just coming second to her fanatical devotion to Voldemort). Even her marriage was an example of her dedication. She didn’t marry Rodolphus Lestrange for love – it was to further the cause of blood-purity. And in her twisted mind, we can imagine that she thought it made their union all the more honourable.
Though we do know that this warped vision of the world was in part thanks to her family. On the whole, the Black family were also pure-blood purists – listen to the portrait of Sirius’s mother and you’ll soon learn that. Consequently, Bellatrix had been exposed to awfully prejudiced views from birth. Yet, as we’ve mentioned before, some family members dared to disagree, proving that just because you happen to be born into a certain family you don’t have to share their beliefs. So, while Bellatrix was raised to be bigoted – she still had a choice. And she chose to embrace insidious and twisted views with open arms and dedicated her life to upholding them.
What can we say? She was obsessed…