Many witches and wizards suffered a great deal during both wizarding wars. Neville Longbottom’s parents were amongst the suffering, and although they survived, they could not raise their son.
What Happened to Neville Longbottom’s Parents?
Neville’s parents were captured and tortured by a group of Death Eaters.
Frank and Alice Longbottom were working for the Ministry of Magic as Aurors, a kind of Magical Police catching “bad” witches and wizards.
They were also a part of the original Order of The Phoenix, a secret society fighting against Lord Voldemort and his army of Death Eaters.
A group of Death Eaters that evaded capture after the first fall of Voldemort in 1981 managed to kidnap Frank Longbottom and later his wife, Alice.
They were both tortured with Cruciatus Curse until they were mentally and physically drained and lost their minds.
They were permanently admitted into St. Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries. During holidays when growing up, Neville visited his parents with his grandmother in the Janus Thickey Ward.
Why Were Neville Longbottom’s Parents Tortured?
Neville’s parents were tortured for information about Voldemort’s whereabouts.
When infant Harry defeated Voldemort in Gordc’s Hollow, everyone thought that the reign of terror had ended, and they were finally safe. That was not always the case because some Death Eaters evaded the authorities and were looking for their master.
Death Eaters presumed Longbottoms’ involvement in Voldemort’s disappearance and were looking for some answers. They kidnapped Frank first and tortured him to help locate their master.
Unfortunately, they didn’t believe that Frank didn’t know about Voldemort’s fall. Death Eaters thought the prophecy included the Longbottoms and pressed with the torture.
They tortured him so long until he lost touch with reality. Then they went for his wife, Alice. She was sentenced to the same torture and ultimately shared her husband’s fate.
Who Tortured Neville Longbottom’s Parents?
Four Death Eaters tortured Neville Longbottom’s Parents: Bellatrix, Rabastan and Rodolphus Lestrange, and Bartemius Crouch Junior.
All four were very active and fanatically loyal Death Eaters. After the first fall of Lord Voldemort, they wanted to find their master and restore him to his previous power.
They believed that he was not dead, but they were unsure what exactly happened to him. They knew about a prophecy, and they suspected Longbottoms to be involved somehow.
Shortly after the incident, all four attackers were captured. During a trial in front of Bartemius Crouch Senior, the father of Barty Crouch Jr., they were sentenced to life in wizarding prison, Azkaban.
Did Neville See His Parents Get Tortured?
Neville didn’t see his parents tortured. It would be a terrible thing to witness, even for a grown wizard.
When Neville’s parents were kidnapped and tortured in an undisclosed location, Neville was with other members of his family.
We can assume that after his father, Frank, was kidnapped first, Neville’s mother moved in with Neville’s grandmother, Augusta Longbottom.
At the time of his parents’ torture, Neville Longbottom was only one year old, and more than likely, under constant surveillance of his grandmother, Frank Longbottom’s mother.
Do Neville Longbottom’s Parents Ever Recover?
Neville’s parents never recovered, and there is no hope for them ever to get better. They remain in the Thickey Ward at St. Mungo’s, where they have constant care and protection of mediwtches and -wizards.
The damage done by Death Eaters was so severe that Frank and Alice’s mental health can’t be restored. The prolonged physical pain caused by the Cruciatus Curse was so immense, they turned their minds inwards and lost their contact with reality to escape it.
Even with the advanced potions and spells constantly being invented in the wizarding world, there is no cure for mental illness like this.
Unspeakables from the Department of Mysteries might be working with human minds and what they are capable of (as we witnessed during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries – brains in the tank), but there is still much to learn.
As we know, the human mind can be immensely vast, mysterious, and unpredictable.
Neville Longbottom’s parents were kidnapped and tortured until they lost their minds. It left poor Neville to be raised by his stern grandmother but also suffering from the knowledge that his parents would never know about him or his achievements.
It is a sad and painful story of a brave family torn apart by war. What happened to the Longbottoms was considered the most horrendous crime ever committed by wizards and witches.