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Harry Potter: Why Death Eaters Don't Constantly Use Avada Kedavra

There are a lot of terrifying spells within "Harry Potter," but the Unforgivable Curses have to be the worst of them all. (It's right there in the name, right?) There's three of them in total, and they're all extraordinarily nasty. The Imperius Curse lets the curse-caster wield complete control over a subject, forcing them to do absolutely anything. The Cruciatus Curse causes good old-fashioned pain, letting the recipient of the spell experience horrible torture for as long as it lasts. Then there's Avada Kedavra, the "Killing Curse," which can't be blocked or stopped in any way, and is frequently wielded by Lord Voldemort and his followers, known as Death Eaters. One Quora user did ask a reasonable question, if you think asking why people don't murder more frequently in the wizarding world: "In Harry Potter, Avada Kedavra can immediately kill. Why didn't the death eaters use this spell only to kill their opponents?"

User Sahil Juneja stepped in right away, quoting Mad-Eye Moody, the Dark wizard-fighting Auror who teaches Hogwarts students about the Unforgivable Curses: "'Avada Kedavra's a curse that needs a powerful bit of magic behind it – you could all get your wands out now and point them at me and say the words, and I doubt I'd get so much as a nose-bleed. But that doesn't matter. I'm not here to teach you how to do it."

Casting Avada Kedavra is a lot harder than you think

"Spells in the Potterverse require varying ranges of power, inherent magical abilities, conviction and concentration," the user said, before backing up their reasoning as to why Death Eaters don't constantly use Avada Kedavra. Their first point is that the spell is incredibly draining and hard to cast, much like the Patronus Charm, so wizards probably wouldn't be able to throw it around whenever it suited them. It would probably weaken after each use, in fact, giving the recipient a "nosebleed" instead of ending their life. Plus, it requires such intense concentration that it probably wouldn't work mid-duel, considering the hectic environment of a wizarding duel, and it also probably wouldn't be your first instinct for that reason alone.

Beyond that, it's possible that not every single Death Eater is skilled enough to even pull this curse off in the first place. As the Quora user says, not every single Death Eater is a rabid follower of Voldemort's pureblood ideals aside from Bellatrix Lestrange, by far his most ardent follower. Essentially, using the Killing Curse all the time is, well, overkill — and probably impossible. "Using the Killing Curse throughout a duel when you aren't exceptionally powerful like Voldemort or even Bellatrix is unreasonable and dangerous," they concluded. "Not everyone's a born killer or wants to be one."

Wizarding World makes it quite clear that there are even worse ways to die than Avada Kedavra

In an article on the official online "Harry Potter" encyclopedia Wizarding World, the site went through some of the very worst curses and spells in the wizarding world — and actually, they don't think Avada Kedavra is the worst of them all. 

"In our eyes, the quick death afforded by Avada Kedavra seems to us a (very slightly) better option than suffering the curses below," the site reads. "At least Cedric Diggory [who was killed using Avada Kedavra in "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire"] had no inkling of what was about to happen and probably experienced little, if any, pain, unlike those left behind." The other curses mentioned include the Cruciatus Curse, the Imperius Curse, Sectumsempra (which mutilates your opponent by cutting and slashing them), and, of course, creating a Horcrux. Making a Horcrux requires one to commit premeditated murder and split off a section of their soul, which is probably the most evil thing a person could do. Voldemort does that seven times. Make of that what you will.