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We'll teach just those whose ancestry's purest.
~ Slytherin's opinion regarding the running of Hogwarts.

Salazar Slytherin is the overarching antagonist of the Wizarding World franchise. He was one of the four founders of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry who founded the House of Slytherin and the ancestor of Lord Voldemort.

Slytherin wanted Hogwarts to only accept pure blood students; when this proposal was rejected by the other founders he became estranged and resorted to an extreme method to secure his vision for the school; murder all Muggle-borns in Hogwarts to keep the blood purity from Pure-blood wizards intact. Slytherin's scheme to purge Hogwarts and his world views directly influenced the actions of Lord Voldemort and his Death Eaters hundreds of years later.



Salazar Slytherin was one of the first recorded parselmouths (wizards that have the extremely rare ability to speak to snakes). When he founded Hogwarts with the other three founders: Godric Gryffindor, Helga Hufflepuff and Rowena Ravenclaw, he chose students who displayed traits of resourcefulness, leadership, ambition, cunning, shrewdness and determination.

He also had a friendly and harmonious relations with the other three founders, and all four coexisted peacefully.

Disillusionment, Construction of the Chamber of Secrets and Departure from Hogwarts[]

Despite everything, Slytherin became disillusioned as time passed, wanting to be more selective of the students admitted to Hogwarts. He believed that the school should only accept pure blood witches and wizards, as he distrusted Muggle-borns, possibly of the great conflict between Wizardkind and Muggles. He tried to sway the other founders to agree with him but they refused, especially Godric Gryffindor. This caused Slytherin's friendship with Godric Gryffindor to break and resulted in him leaving the school. Before leaving, Slytherin built a secret hidden hall deep underneath the castle where he placed a Basilisk egg without the knowledge of the other founders.

Slytherin planned to have his "heir" eventually find that hidden room and unleash the Basilisk in order to purge Hogwarts of all Muggle-born students. This secret room came to be known as "The Chamber of Secrets" after the other founders heard rumours of its existence but were unable to find it.


Future Hogwarts headmasters conducted multiple attempts to find Slytherin's Chamber of Secrets, but all proved to be futile, leading the Chamber to be dismissed as mere myth. As time passed and the castle was expanded, the Chamber was flooded by the addition of plumbing systems while a girl's bathroom was built over the original secret entrance, making the said bathroom the new entrance.

It is unknown when or how he died, but it is known that his portrait is still at Hogwarts and his locket was made into a horcrux by Voldemort. While there is little evidence to support it, there is a popular historical theory that Slytherin reconciled with the other founders and returned to Hogwarts in his later years, where he remained for the rest of his life.

Slytherin's wand was passed down by his descendants, the Gaunt family. While under the possession of Gormlaith Gaunt, it was stolen by her niece, Isolt Sayre when she fled to America, where she used it following her founding of Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, inspired by her wishes to attend Hogwarts during her youth that went unfulfilled due to Gormlaith's descision to homeschool her. When Gormlaith tracked down Isolt to seek revenge, she deactivated the wand with a single word of Parseltongue; unable to seak the language herself, Isolt was unable to reactivate the wand and buried it, where it grew into a snakewood tree. The tree continues to stand to this day, with the leaves being found to contain powerful medicinal properties.


Slytherin's bloodline was passed down through the female line for generations. The Gaunt family, who practised inbreeding by marrying their own cousins, in order to keep their bloodline pure and their ability to speak Parseltounge, were the last known family to possess Salazar Slytherin's blood. Among the last of the Gaunts included Marvolo Gaunt and his two children Morfin and Merope. Merope fell in love with a Muggle named Tom Riddle and eloped with him, while her father and brother were in Azkaban. Eventually Tom and Merope's marriage resulted in the birth of Tom Marvolo Riddle, later known as Lord Voldemort.

Riddle discovered that he was the heir of Slytherin during his time as a Hogwarts student, as such he found the Chamber of Secrets and initially followed Slytherin's plan. However, after the Basilisk killed Myrtle Warren, the school was threatened to be shut down. As such, Riddle was forced to stop accessing the Chamber and instead left one of his Horcruxes behind so that he could continue using the Basilisk through someone else in the future.

After Voldemort's death, everyone thought that Slytherin's bloodline had ended.

However, in The Cursed Child, it was revealed more than 20 years after Voldemort's death that the Dark Lord had a daughter with Bellatrix Lestrange, her name was Delphini. As of 2020, Delphini is the last known survivor of the Slytherin bloodline.


  • As stated previously, it was Salazar's belief in blood purity — which fiercely opposed by Godric Gryffindor who wanted every young Wizardkind to attend Hogwarts regardless of their blood status — that sparked the rivalry between Hogwarts houses they represented. That, coupled with his action of breeding a Basilisk called Serpent of Slytherin for his heir (who later revealed to be Lord Voldemort), and many villains in the franchise came from the very Hogwarts house Salazar represented saw Slytherin attained unfair reputation as the most untrustworthy of four. The fact that heroes and protagonists of the series came from Gryffindor by contrast and rivalry in question more than often akin to the conflict between good and evil on the first glance didn't help either.
    • It must be stressed that Slytherin harbored good people such as Slughorn and, to Harry's shock, Severus Snape beneath his vengeful nature. As the two demonstrated, Slytherins have the choice to reject the belief in blood purity and importantly, capable of channeling their ambition, resourcefulness, determination, and cleverness for a noble cause as much as Gryffindor with daring, nerve, and chivalry. But the social stigma resulted by actions of pure-blood elitists among Slytherins made it hard for others to trust them.
    • To further drive such point, Harry Potter decreed Slytherin to be excluded from ever joining Dumbledore's Army despite the fact that some of them chose to be neutral to Death Eaters and their allies from the corrupt Ministry of Magic. Rionach Steward, one of Slytherin's descendants, deemed the gift of Parseltongue she inherited from Salazar as abomination and vowed to never marry to end her bloodline, unaware with the existence of her kin at Great Britain.


           HarryPotter Villains

Death Eaters
Lord Voldemort | Barty Crouch Jr. (Warner Bros.) | Bellatrix Lestrange | Corban Yaxley | Peter Pettigrew (Warner Bros.) | Alecto Carrow | Amycus Carrow | Antonin Dolohov | Augustus Rookwood | Walden Macnair | Thorfinn Rowle | Evan Rosier | Cedric Diggory (Alternate Timeline) | Rodolphus Lestrange | Avery II

Death Eater defectors
Severus Snape | Regulus Black | The Malfoys (Lucius Malfoy & Draco Malfoy)‡ | Igor Karkaroff | Peter Pettigrew

Death Eater Allies
Quirinus Quirrell | Dolores Umbridge | Fenrir Greyback | Pius Thicknesse | Albert Runcorn | Snatchers (Scabior) | Vincent Crabbe | Gregory Goyle | John Dawlish | Kreacher | Stan Shunpike

Hogwarts Staff
Severus Snape | Barty Crouch Jr. (Warner Bros.) | Alecto Carrow | Amycus Carrow | Quirinus Quirrell | Dolores Umbridge | Gilderoy Lockhart | Argus Filch | Salazar Slytherin

Ministry of Magic
Cornelius Fudge | Pius Thicknesse | Corban Yaxley | Muggle-Born Registration Commission (Dolores Umbridge & Albert Runcorn) | John Dawlish | Damocles Rowle

Gellert Grindelwald's Alliance
Gellert Grindelwald | Credence Barebone | Vinda Rosier | Queenie Goldstein | Gunnar Grimmson | Abernathy | Krall | Carrow | Nagel | Krafft | MacDuff | Helmut | Anton Vogel | Karl

Other Wizards & Witches
Morfin Gaunt | Marvolo Gaunt | Merope Gaunt | Herpo the Foul | Merwyn the Malicious | Ekrizdis | Delphini | Rita Skeeter | Peregrine | Verucca Buckthorn-Snyde | Patricia Rakepick | Merula Snyde | Ismelda Murk | Emily Tyler | Gormlaith Gaunt | Corvus Lestrange | Raczidian | Erkstag Warden | Mundungus Fletcher | Isidora Morganach

New Salem Philanthropic Society
Mary Lou Barebone | Credence Barebone

Ranrok's Loyalists
Ranrok | Pergit | Belgruff the Bludgeoner | Grodbik | Ogbert the Odd

The Serpent of Slytherin | Acromantula (Aragog & Acromantula Colony) | Dementors | Centaurs‡ | Giants | Inferi | Nagini | Mountain Troll | Gnarlak | Griphook | Kreacher | Manticores (Manticore Queen)

Tales of Beedle the Bard
Charlatan | Death | Warlock

The Dursleys(Marge Dursley) | Tobias Snape