God doesn't want you to be happy. He wants you to be strong.
— Daphne to her children
Daphne Ulyana Sevchenko (Ukrainian: Дафна Ульяна Севченко) (b. 16 July — 19 November) was a Ukrainian pure-blood witch of the old and privileged Sevchenko family, the only child of Mr and Mrs Sevchenko. Her family were infamous for their strict views on Dark magic and blood supremacy, as well as having once been former followers and advocates for Gellert Grindelwald.
Upon attending Durmstrang Institute from the age of eleven, Daphne was Sorted into Molokov House, the House of strength and endurance. During her sixth year, Daphne was among the delegation that travelled to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for the annual Triwizard Tournament. While there she first met her later husband Xanthas Jordan, with whom she shared a cruel and sadistic nature; the pair bonded over the pleasure they gained from inflicting pain in others, as well as being Beaters on their own respective House teams. She was also a participant in the attempted intimidation of Daya Devdhar, although her motives were borne from jealousy, and led her efforts to ultimately fail.
After completing her education, Daphne moved to Britain and married Xanthas, with whom she lived in the Jordan House. Her family disapproved of the union and her decision to leave Ukraine, thus cutting all ties with her. She and Xanthas later had four children: Archie, Gregory, Jamie and Amy. Despite the wealth and splendour the family lived in, Daphne fell into a deep depression and committed suicide partway through Jamie's first year as a result. This tragedy would have a profound impact on those she left behind — Xanthas became the sole carer for their children, a role which he resented. He became abusive and later died while facing lifelong incarceration in Azkaban, leaving the children orphaned.
Through her four children, Daphne would posthumously gain a number of grandchildren, all of whom were raised without the prejudicial ideals their own parents had dealt them; Amy and her husband also named their only daughter Daphne Garnett in her memory. In addition, her youthful form was also memorialised through the form of her very own portrait, which was kept on the walls of the portrait room in the Jordan House.
Death and post-mortem
Personality and traits
- "I wasn't much older but everybody was already afraid of me. She wasn't, though. She was fearless. There was nothing she wouldn't do."
- —Xanthas regarding Daphne's bold and striking personality
Magical abilities and skills
- Dark Arts:
- Unforgivable Curses:
- "They didn't really approve of her coming here, so..."
- —Daphne's estrangement from her family
- Xanthas: "My loyalty to my name is how I measure myself."
- Daphne: "What about your loyalty to me?"
- — Daphne and Xanthas arguing over his lack of constancy and devotion
- Jamie: "Do you honestly think she cared about us? She left us, Amy. She was selfish."
- Amy: "That's not true. She was sad. She was depressed!"
- — Amy and Jamie disagree over Daphne's suicide
The name Daphne means "laurel" in Greek. It is derived from the nymph Daphne in Greek mythology, who was pursued by the god Apollo. She prayed to her father, the river god Peneus, to change her body in order to escape the love-struck Apollo and Peneus then transformed her into the laurel tree, which Apollo then claimed as one of his sacred symbols. In Ancient Greece, a wreath of laurels was given as a prize and considered a symbol of prosperity, fame, and victory.
Ulyana is the Russian form of the name Julia or Juliana, meaning "youthful" or "downy".
Sevchenko is a variant of the name Shevchenko (Ukrainian: Шевченко), a family name of Ukrainian origin. It is derived from the Ukrainian word shvets (Ukrainian: швець), meaning "cobbler/shoemaker", and the suffix -enko, denoting descent.