Atlas & Gazetteer Updated for Deathly Hallows

Knockturn Alley

"Skulkin' around Knockturn Alley, I dunno -- dodgy place, Harry -- don' want no one ter see yeh down there --"
    --  Rubeus Hagrid, CS4

Knockturn Alley


Just around the corner from Diagon Alley lies a dark, twisting alleyway devoted to the Dark Arts: Knockturn Alley. It's a place that the Weasley children are not allowed in, and with good reason; not only are the wares sold their a bit dodgy, but the wizards hanging around behave fairly suspiciously as well. From the shops and the street vendors one can purchase, among other things, shrunken heads, poisonous candles, human-looking fingernails, and Flesh-Eating Slug Repellent (CS4).

Borgin & Burkes

Some way down Knockturn Alley at number 13B (JKR) lies Borgin & Burkes, the most notorious of the alley's shops, which specializes in "objects with unusual and powerful properties" (HBP20), and particularly items that are both "unusual and ancient" (JKR). The shop is quite large, dusty, and dimly lit, with a large stone fireplace (CS4), and is known to be frequented by families like the Malfoys (CS4, HBP6). Its proprietors, Mr. Borgin and Caractacus Burke, are smooth talkers known to buy magical objects for much less than they're worth, and sell them for far more (CS4, HBP13).

When Tom Riddle graduated Hogwarts, he surprised his teachers by taking a job at Borgin & Burkes, though they gladly hired him as he was an enchanting young man and able to "persuade" owners of valuable magical objects to sell them to the shop. What his professors didn't know was that Riddle wanted access to these powerful objects, already thinking of his Horcruxes. When Riddle went on one such visit, to the home of Hepzibah Smith, she showed him two valuable objects that she possessed: the cup of Hufflepuff and Slytherin's locket. Upon seeing these, Riddle murdered Hepzibah, framed her house-elf, stole the items, and vanished (HBP13).

Harry has visited the shop twice; first as a twelve-year-old, when he accidentally took the Floo Network to the wrong destination, and watched Lucius Malfoy come in with Draco and sell items to the shop (CS4); and second four years later, when he secretly followed Draco to the shop and overheard him purchasing the vanishing cabinet and threatening Mr. Borgin, though Harry did not figure out what Malfoy had been buying until many months later (HBP6).

items sold in Knockturn Alley

Items listed were on sale at Borgin & Burkes unless otherwise noted.

Primary editor: John Kearns. Original page date 6 January, 2001; Last page update 28 September, 2007.