Dobby was a house-elf who served the Malfoy family. His masters were Dark Wizards who treated him cruelly. In 1992, he tried to warnHarry Potter of the plot to have the Chamber of Secrets reopened. At the end of that school year, after Harry had vanquished the spirit ofTom Riddle and the basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets, he trickedLucius Malfoy into freeing Dobby.
After a period of unemployment, Dobby went on to work in Hogwarts, in the kitchens, Albus Dumbledor told Dobby that he was free to call him a "barmy old codger" if he liked, and was later joined by Winky. In 1997, Dobby helped Harry spy on Draco Malfoy with Kreacher. In1998, he went on Aberforth Dumbledore's orders to save the lives of Harry and his companions Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Luna Lovegood, Dean Thomas, Mr. Ollivander, and Griphook from Death Eaters at Malfoy Manor and was fatally wounded by Bellatrix Lestrange's knife as he successfully carried Harry and Griphook to safety in the Shell Cottage. Harry dug Dobby's grave in the gardens of Shell Cottage without using magic and placed Dobby's body inside. After Harry finished burying one of his most loyal friends, he carved a rock saying Here lies Dobby, A Free Elf. placing it where Dobby was buried. 
- "Dobby is used to death threats, sir. Dobby gets them five times a day at home."
- —Dobby on his time with the Malfoys.[src]
Dobby was the resident house-elf of Malfoy Manor, serving Lucius Malfoy, his wife Narcissa, and their son Draco. They treated Dobby with unkindness and cruelty, often reminding him to perform extra punishments on himself when he did something disagreeable to them. Dobby also toldHarry Potter that he was accustomed to death threats, because he received them 'five times a day' from the Malfoys. Though he always did as he was told, he longed to be free of them.
- "Harry Potter must NOT go back to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry this year!"
- —Dobby warning Harry not to return to Hogwarts[src]
Dobby knew of the plan to reopen the Chamber of Secrets during Harry Potter's second year at Hogwarts. Presumably, this was, because the Malfoys saw Dobby as an insignificant slave, and because they knew thathouse-elves were not able to break the commands of their masters. Dobby went to the Dursley House to warn Harry not to go back to school, revealing that he had been intercepting his mail. Harry adamantly refused to comply, so Dobby performed a Hover Charm on Aunt Petunia's pudding, which was detected by the Ministry of Magic through the Trace.
Mafalda Hopkirk of the Improper Use of Magic Office sent Harry a warning letter for the apparent transgression by an underage wizard, informing the Dursleys that Harry was not allowed to use magic outside of school. Harry was then locked in his room; however Ron, Fred and George Weasley came in their father's enchanted flying car to free him. Unfazed, Dobby covertly watched Harry Potter and magically sealed the barrier to Platform Nine and Three Quarters, preventing Harry and Ron from reaching the Hogwarts Express. This too failed as the two used the flying car again. Lastly, Dobby tried his most risky and dangerous plan by making a Bludger attack Harry during a Quidditch match, hoping to send him back to Privet Drive injured, but alive. This plan could not have been too well thought-out, because under normal circumstances Madam Pomfrey, the school nurse, would have been able to mend Harry's injuries instantly. However, an unfortunate blunder by Professor Gilderoy Lockhart resulted in Harry losing all the bones in his right arm. Madam Pomfrey was able to regrow the bones, but it took an entire night. While Harry was in the hospital wing recovering, Dobby appeared and admitted his acts, enraging Harry to the point that he threatened to strangle him. Dobby implored Harry to leave, accidentally admitting that the Chamber of Secrets had been opened before. Harry demanded to know who had opened it last time, but Dobby refused to reveal any more information and Disapparated when he heard someone.
- "Dobby has no master. Dobby is a free elf!"
- —Dobby to the Malfoy family[src]
Near the end of the year, Lucius Malfoy came to the school with Dobby to see if it was true that Headmaster Albus Dumbledore had returned. Here, realising that Dobby belonged to the Malfoys, Harry tricked Lucius into giving Dobby one of his soiled socks in Tom Riddle's Diary, freeing him. When Lucius tried to attack Harry in retaliation, Dobby blasted him backwards down a flight of stairs. Harry's only request in return was for Dobby never to try to save his life again.
After becoming a free elf, Dobby struggled to find work, as he wanted to be paid. Eventually, he was hired byAlbus Dumbledore to work in the kitchens of Hogwarts for a Galleon a week and one day a month off. Hermione Granger was initially indignant at the amount of pay, but Dobby explained that he requested that amount as Dumbledore had offered more (10 Galleons a week, and weekends off). It was around this time that Hermione formed the organisation called S.P.E.W (spew as Ron Weasley called it).
When Winky, Barty Crouch Sr's house-elf, was given clothes and freed of her servitude, she did not accept it as a reward, as Dobby had, but rather as punishment and a shameful failure in the fashion of most house-elves.She took up work at Hogwarts as well, but she became a heavy drinker ofButterbeer, and Dobby took care of her. For a time, Dobby was the only Hogwarts' house-elf who would clean Gryffindor Tower, because Hermione had hidden woolen hats and socks in with the rubbish with the intention of freeing them. The Hogwarts house-elves refused thereafter to clean the common room, as they viewed the hidden clothes to be insulting. This was a delight for Dobby, though, because it allowed him to see Harry Potter and his friends, including Ron Weasley, who he called Harry Potter's"Wheezy."
Dobby talking with his friends.Added by Pol 871During the second task of the Triwizard Tournament, Bartemius Crouch Jr., who was disguised as Alastor Moody, tricked Dobby into stealing a helping ofgillyweed to give to Harry Potter. This allowed Harry to breathe underwater and retrieve Ron Weasley and Gabrielle Delacour from the lake.
Dobby continued to work in the kitchens at Hogwarts, but was an outsider among the other elves in the castle. Over the course of his employment at Hogwarts, Dobby became close friends with Aberforth Dumbledore and spent much time at Aberforth's home in Hogsmeade.
- "Dobby knows the perfect place, sir! Dobby heard tell of it from the other house-elves when he came to Hogwarts, sir. It is known by us as the Come and Go Room, sir, or else as the Room of Requirement!"
- —Dobby telling Harry Potter of the Room of Requirement.[src]
In 1995, when Dolores Umbridge banned all clubs at Hogwarts, Harry Potter asked Dobby if he knew of a secret place in which they could have meetings for Dumbledore's Army, halfheartedly. Dobby, however, told him of theRoom of Requirement and how to get into it. He knew of this secret room, because he had used it frequently to hide Winky after she became drunk. Harry Potter successfully made use of the room and thus was able to start holding Dumbledore's Army meetings.
When Marietta Edgecombe betrayed Dumbledore's Army to Professor Umbridge, Dobby immediately warned Harry that the Inquisitorial Squad was going to attack even though the house-elves had been forbidden to tell anyone. When he heard, Harry ordered Dobby not to punish himself.
Dobby along with Kreacher, formerly the House of Black's house-elf who now belonged to Harry, tailed Draco Malfoy and helped Harry learn that Draco was using the Room of Requirement. Kreacher insulted Harry and stated that Draco would be a better master. Dobby fought him and knocked out several of his teeth and tearfully told him that Harry was a great wizard and that the Malfoys were not good masters for a house-elf.
- Main article: Skirmish at Malfoy Manor
- "Dobby never meant to kill! Dobby meant only to maim or seriously injure."
- —Dobby after he dropped a chandelier on Bellatrix[src]
Captured by a group of Snatchers led by Fenrir Greyback, Harry, Ron,Hermione, Dean Thomas, and the Goblin Griphook were taken to Malfoy Manor. There, Bellatrix Lestrange saw that they were carrying the Sword of Gryffindor, and she stopped Lucius Malfoy from summoning Voldemort, afraid they had been in her Gringotts vault. Keeping Hermione upstairs for interrogation and torture, Bellatrix had the others imprisoned in the locked cellar, where they encountered Luna Lovegood and Ollivander who were also being held there. Though the new arrivals were tied up, Luna found a nail with which she was able to cut their bonds.
Desperate at hearing Hermione's cries of pain from above, Harry frantically fidgeted with the fragment of the two-way mirror Sirius had given him years before and saw a sky-blue eye looking out of it at him. Harry pleaded for help from the owner of the eye, Aberforth Dumbledore, and shortly Dobby, sent by Aberforth, Apparated into the cellar. As he was able to Disapparate to and from the Manor, Harry instructed him to first take Luna Lovegood, Dean Thomas, and Mr. Ollivander from the cellar, then return. He did so, bringing the three to Shell Cottage, the home of Bill Weasley and his wife Fleur Delacour. From upstairs, where she was now questioning Griphook about whether or not the sword was the real one, Bellatrix heard the noise of Dobby Disapparating and sent Peter Pettigrew to investigate. Harry and Ron managed to overpower Pettigrew when he hesitated, reminded of his life debt to Harry, and his own magical silver hand strangled him to death.
- "Such a beautiful place, to be with friends. Dobby is happy to be with his friend, Harry Potter."
- —Dobby's last words, said to Harry Potter.[src]
Attempting to rescue Hermione and Griphook, Harry and Ron were forced to surrender when a disarmed Bellatrix threatened to cut Hermione's throat with a silver knife. Dobby announced his return by causing a chandelier to fall on Bellatrix. Harry seized the wands Draco Malfoy was holding and used a stunning spell on Greyback. Ron grabbed Hermione and they Disapparated to Shell Cottage. Meanwhile Harry similarly grabbed Griphook and Disapparated.
As Harry Disapparated, Bellatrix threw her knife at him. Harry, not knowing where he was heading, was relieved to find, in the midst of his Disapparation, that he could feel Dobby alongside. Arriving at Shell Cottage, Harry discovered that Dobby had been fatally wounded by Bellatrix's thrown knife. Dobby died moments later, his final words being "Dobby is happy to be with his friend Harry Potter".
- "HERE LIES DOBBY, A FREE ELF."
- —Epitaph on Dobby's grave marker, written by Harry Potter.[src]
Harry, deeply grieving, decided to dig Dobby's grave by hand without using magic. Ron Weasley and Dean Thomasjoined Harry and laboured with him in digging the grave. They placed Dobby's body in the grave and gave him socks, shoes, and a hat. Standing over Dobby, Luna Lovegood gently closed his eyes and thanked him for rescuing her and the others. Bill Weasley filled in the grave, while Harry used his wand and carved "HERE LIES DOBBY, A FREE ELF" on a flat rock he placed on the burial mound.
Griphook was positively affected by Harry's display of humility and love for the house-elf, aiding him in his decision to help Harry Potter retrieve a horcruxfrom Gringotts Wizarding Bank. His death also helped close Harry's mind from Voldemort and gave him greater control over when he could access the Dark Lord's thoughts.
Dobby was a house-elf, much shorter in stature than humans, standing only about 3 and a half feet (1.06 m). He had large, tennis-ball-like green eyes, a pencil-like nose and long, bat-like pointed ears. Before he was given freedom, he wore a body-covering pillowcase. Later at Hogwarts, he wore a mismatched variety of sweaters, shorts, and socks. Socks became his favorite clothing after he was freed by Harry's sock. He preferred colorful, mismatched socks. When Hermione Granger began hiding clothes she made around the Gryffindor Common Room in an attempt to free the Hogwarts house-elves, Dobby kept the clothes and began wearing them, as the other elves thereafter refused to clean Gryffindor Tower.
Dobby was a brave, loyal house-elf, willing to put himself in dangerous situations when he knew it to be the right thing to do. He was also very loyal to the few friends he had. He considered himself to be a good house-elf, though other house elves seemed to find his desires and proclamations of being a free house-elf to be shameful. Despite this, he was still a hard worker. When he went to work at Hogwarts he refused Dumbledore's original offer of ten Galleons a week and weekends off, opting instead for one Galleon a week and one day off per month. He explained to Harry, Ron, and Hermione that he liked freedom very much, but he liked work better. Dobby thought of Harry as his best friend.
Despite (or perhaps because of) his loyalty to his friends, Dobby once attempted to seriously injure Harry Potter, hoping that if he was hurt badly enough he would be sent home. He did not make the rogue bludger chase Harry out of malicious intent, but because he was trying to save him from Lucius Malfoy's plot to open the Chamber of Secrets. When Harry found out he was furious but Dobby explained why he had tampered with the bludger and by the end of the year Harry had forgiven him.
One most noticeable trait was how he punished himself every time he believed he had done something wrong, usually using something to hit his head or going as far as to iron his own hands.
Dobby's favourite gift to receive was socks, likely because he was freed from his enslavement to the Malfoys with a sock. He would get confused when he would get two of the same style and would often give socks as gifts as well.
Dobby referred to himself in the third person and tended to get his verb conjugation mixed up. Examples of his strange speech pattern include "I has seven now sir" or "Dobby must punish himself most grievously for coming sir". Dobby referred to Ron as Harry's "Wheezy."
He was extremely devoted to Harry Potter after Harry freed him in 1993, helping him out on several occasions, ultimately at the cost of his own life. He also tried to help Winky after she was dismissed by Crouch, getting her a job at Hogwarts as well, and looking after her whenever she became drunk on butterbeer.
- "Dobby has no master, Dobby is a free elf, and Dobby has come to save Harry Potter and his friends."
- —Dobby while standing up against Bellatrix Lestrange and his former masters[src]
- Apparition: Because he was a house elf, Dobby was able to apparate even inside places that normally forbade apparation such as Hogwarts. Even after being stabbed by Bellatrix Lestrange's knife, Dobby still managed to take Harry to their intended destination just before he died.Dobby disapparatingAdded by Franz1286
- Levitation: Dobby displayed the ability to levitate a cake when trying to stop Harry from returning to Hogwarts.
- Tampering magic: Dobby also displayed a talent for tampering with objects. This was shown when he tampered with a bludger forcing it to chase Harry hoping that if it hurt him badly enough he'd be sent home. Naturally Dobby was not intending to kill Harry; in fact he was trying to save him from Lucius Malfoy's plan to open the Chamber of Secrets.
- Magical Blasts: By clicking his fingers, Dobby was able to blast Lucius Malfoy across a corridor shortly after being freed by Harry Potter. He later used his magical blasts during the skirmish at Malfoy Manor.
- Harry: "Dobby, no don't die, don't die -"
- Dobby: "Harry... Potter..."
- — Dobby's last words, said to Harry.[src]
Dobby and Harry Potter had a very strong relationship. When Harry first meets Dobby he is a bit confused. Near the end of the1992–1993 school year, Harry freed Dobby from the slavery of theMalfoy family. Lucius became angry and intended to attack Harry but Dobby protected him by using a defensive spell. In 1995, Dobby told Harry about the Room of Requirement and how to get inside. It is a secret room inside Hogwarts castle and cannot be seen even on the Marauder's Map. Harry and his friends used the room in Dumbledore's Army's meetings and practices.
- "Such a beautiful place... to be with your friend... Harry Potter..."
- —Dobby to Harry just before his death.[src]
In 1996, Dobby had a fight with, another house-elf, Kreacher after Kreacher insulted Harry. In 1998, when Harry, Ron, Hermione, Luna, Dean Thomas, Mr. Ollivander and the goblin Griphook were captured and taken hostage at the Malfoy Manor, Dobby Apparated there to rescue them. As they attempted to Disapparate to Shell Cottage,Bellatrix Lestrange threw her silver dagger, mortally wounding Dobby in the chest. Arriving at Shell Cottage, the house of the newly-wed Bill Weasley and Fleur Delacour, Harry discovered Dobby's wound and cried out for help as Dobby died in Harry's arms. Harry was devastated by the death of Dobby. He dug a grave without using magic and held a small funeral for him in the garden of Shell Cottage. Dobby's epitaph reads "HERE LIES DOBBY, A FREE ELF".
- "You've lost me my servant!"
- —Lucius Malfoy to Harry Potter, after he freed Dobby.[src]
Dobby was the house-elf of the Malfoy family. Lucius, Narcissa and Draco Malfoy treated Dobby with cruelty and were very sadistic with him. Dobby feared them, but did everything they ordered him to. In 1993, Harry Potterfreed Dobby by tricking Lucius into unknowingly giving Dobby a sock. Lucius became angry and attempted to attack Harry, but Dobby blasted him down a flight of stairs. The last time Lucius saw Dobby was in 1998, when Dobby came to Malfoy Manor to rescue Harry Potter and his friends. Dobby was eventually killed by Bellatrix Lestrange. It is unknown how the Malfoys reacted when they learned it.
Dobby first met Ron Weasley in 1994 at Hogwarts Kitchens, where Dobby worked. Ron was a close friend of Harry Potter. When Dobby talked with Harry and Ron about his life as a free elf, Ron started to like Dobby, and offered him a maroon sweater his mother had made, making the house-elf excited. They were met again three years later, in1997, when both Harry and Ron were at the hospital wing; Harry wanted Dobby to spy on Draco Malfoy because he believed he was a Death Eater. However, Ron didn't agree with this. In 1998, Harry, Ron, Hermione Granger and others were imprisoned at Malfoy Manor and Dobby came for their rescue. However, he was killed during the battle by Bellatrix Lestrange. Ron then respected Dobby very much and thanked him for saving his life.
Hermione Granger also met Dobby for the first time at the Hogwarts kitchens, where the latter worked. Hermione appeared to like Dobby, because he loved his freedom and because he wanted to make the other house-elves want freedom, too. During her fifth year at Hogwarts, Hermione spent most of her time making clothes and hiding them in many places of the Gryffindor Common Tower. However, the house-elves didn't clean those places, as they didn't want to take the clothes, and thus, Dobby took them all. Dobby and Hermione didn't meet again until 1997, when Harry had sent Dobby to spy on Draco Malfoy. When Dobby came to the Malfoy Manor to rescue them, Hermione was being tortured by Bellatrix Lestrange. Dobby then brought them to Shell Cottage but was killed by Bellatrix by her throwing a knife and stabbing Dobby. Hermione was very sad during and after his slow, upsetting death.
Dobby first met Winky, a female house-elf in 1994. Winky was given clothes by her master, Barty Crouch. Unlike Dobby, who loved his freedom, Winky was depressed and thought she was useless. When Dobby expressed his opinion, that his life as a free elf was better than as a servant, he made her believe that he was a “bad house-elf”. So, Dobby tried in vain to convince her that she could live without serving the Crouch family. However, it is possible that they became friends later, and it is known that Winky managed to get over the fact that she was fired, although Dobby had died since then.
Dobby and Kreacher, another house-elf, didn't have a good relationship. Firstly, Kreacher strongly disliked Harry Potter, because he was a friend of many Muggle-borns and “blood-traitors." Dobby loved and respected Harry very much, because he freed him; this was also the reason why the two house-elves often fought with each other. In 1996, they fought in the Hospital wing. Harry attempted to make them stop, but then Peevesappeared and encouraged them to hit each other. Furthermore, Harry told both Dobby and Kreacher to go and spy on Draco Malfoy; even then, they argued. However, Kreacher later started to respect Harry and not be prejudiced against Muggle-borns and Half-bloods. It is possible that, since Kreacher had contact with the Hogwarts kitchen house-elves, he had contact with Dobby, too, but it is unknown if Dobby learned about Kreacher's change before he was killed in 1998.
Dobby started his work at the Hogwarts Kitchens in 1994, a year after he was freed by Harry Potter. He loved his life as a free elf, something that the other house-elves who worked at the kitchens did not. They believed Dobby was mad and there was a great difference between their ideology and Dobby's, about a house-elf's life. Thus, he didn't have such a good relationship with his co-workers, as they believed that a house-elf should not have any personal life when they had to work and serve their masters. However, their opinion about Dobby might have changed during their later years at Hogwarts. During the Battle of Hogwarts all the house-elves, with Kreacher as a leader, fought against the Death Eaters, without anyone ordering them to do so. This indicates that they learned a house-elf can have a personal opinion, and that they should have as many rights as the humans. Unfortunately, Dobby had died by then.
Albus Dumbledore, the Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, was considered by many people (including Dobby) as the greatest wizard of all time. Dobby always admired Dumbledore, because he was kind to everyone, even to the house-elves, and because he opposed Lord Voldemort. Dumbledore met Dobby in 1993, when he was still the servant of the Malfoy family. In 1994, Dobby asked Dumbledore for a job at the Hogwarts Kitchens and the headmaster gave him the job, offering a much higher salary than Dobby expected and gaining the house-elf's respect. He also permitted Dobby to call him as he wanted (such as "a barmy old codger"). Dobby was very fond of Dumbledore and knew he would never insult him, but he was awed by Dumbledore's gift of freedom of speech. Dumbledore died in 1997; it is unknown how Dobby reacted, or whether he attended his funeral.
Over the course of his employment at Hogwarts, Dobby became close friends with Aberforth Dumbledore, and spent much time at Aberforth's home in Hogsmeade, getting to and from the school through a secret tunnel. As Aberforth was an old and grumpy person, he didn't have a good relationship with many people. However, Aberforth himself stated that he liked Dobby. In 1998, Harry Potter and his friends were captured by Snatchers and imprisoned at the Malfoy Manorcellar. Harry asked for help while looking at a two-way mirror; Aberforth had the other mirror. He sent Dobby to rescue them; the house-elf did so, but was killed by Bellatrix Lestrange. After that, Aberforth told Harry, Ron and Hermione that he was really sorry, as he liked Dobby.
- "Thank you so much, Dobby, for rescuing me from that cellar. It's so unfair that you had to die, when you were so good and so brave. I'll always remember what you did for us. I hope you're happy now."
- —Luna Lovegood at Dobby's funeral.[src]
After Dobby's death, those whom he saved showed their respect and admiration for his bravery, and lamented his death sorrowfully. Griphook was also astonished that Harry buried Dobby's body with such feeling.
According to the OED, a "dobby" is an old English word for a benevolent elf that would perform household tasks secretly in the night, like the elves in tales of the elves and the shoemaker. However, just as those elves disappeared when the shoemaker made them shoes, so the dobbies were said to disappear when offered clothing. Also called a Brownie. A dobby is also a small mechanical part in a loom that enables the weaver to create small geometric patterns.
- Dobby appears in the movie adaptations of Chamber of Secrets and Deathly Hallows: Part 1, being voiced by Toby Jones in both films. He appears in a flashback in Deathly Hallows: Part 2.
- Perhaps not coincidentally, in the films adaptations of Goblet of Fire and Order of the Phoenix, Neville Longbottom does everything important that Dobby did in the books (giving Harry the gillyweed and informing him of the Room of Requirement).Dobby as a Lego minifigure.Added by Pol 871
- Dobby shares his birthday with Mark Russell.
- Dobby's favourite article of clothing appears to be socks. This may be because Dobby was freed when Harry tricked Lucius Malfoy into giving Dobby a sock.
- The magic Dobby used to fend off Lucius Malfoy to protect Harry resembles the Knockback Jinx.
- In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, it appears that instead of a rock to mark Dobby's grave, there is a more conventionally-shaped tombstone.
- In Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4, Dobby throws Harry's school books in the bin, because he thinks Harry will not return to school.
- It is possible that the knife that Bellatrix Lestrange had thrown was meant for Harry to stop him from Apparating from the Malfoy Manor and Dobby took the knife for Harry to save him. Either that, or Bellatrix missed her target of Harry and accidentally hit Dobby.
- In the film version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Dobby's eyes are green. However, in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, Dobby's eyes appear to be some darker blue-like sort of green; however this can possibly be during the years and he simply is grown older.
- In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, Dobby is still wearing his pillow case instead of the clothes he wears in the books.