They are corpses, dead bodies that have been bewitched to do a Dark wizard’s bidding. Inferi have not been seen for a long time, however, not since Voldemort was last powerful. He killed enough people to make an army of them, of course."
- – Albus Dumbledore on Inferi
An Inferius (plural: Inferi) is a dead body, reanimated by a Dark Wizard, similar but intrinsically distinct from a zombie. They are created through the magical branch of the Dark Arts called Necromancy.
In 1899, it was mentioned that the Dark wizard, Gellert Grindelwald, sought to create an army of Inferi, and believed that the Resurrection Stone could grant him such powers. It is unknown whether he succeeded, though his conception on the stone’s abilities were in fact incorrect.
First Wizarding War (1970 – 1981)
During the First Wizarding War, Voldemort was known to have created an army of Inferi from the large amount of people he killed. These were mostly vagrant, homeless Muggles murdered by Voldemort, but some of them were the earthly remains of wizards and witches who “disappeared” without explanation.
2014 Quidditch World Cup
In 2014, rumors that the Haiti was using Inferi to intimidate other teams were dismissed by the ICWQC as untrue. The rumors, however, proved true when Inferi attacked crowds in the opening ceremony of the 2014 Quidditch World Cup, leading to 300 casualties.
Inferi are gaunt, skeletal beings that closely resemble zombies. Being human corpses, they have individual appearances based on the humans they were created from.
Inferi have no free will, and cannot think for themselves; their purpose is merely to serve as puppets of the Dark Wizard who reanimated them. The spells required to reanimate dead bodies are much more complex than those used to make inanimate objects fly. As no spell can bring back the dead, the Inferi are not alive, just corpse puppets. Despite this, they can apparently speak.
Due to their status as being unfeeling dead, the Inferi are immune to bodily damages such as slashing , and have great physical strength, enough to kill a human or drag them away. Due to this superior strength, they are especially dangerous en masse.
Defense Against Inferi
Because Inferi are creatures of the Dark, they dislike light and heat (no spell has been found to render dead flesh impervious to burning. The most effective spell against them is therefore a fire-summoning spell, such as Firestorm. Because of this, the Inferi are enchanted by their master to avoid flames. Other spells might work against a few Inferi, but might not be useful against a whole army of them. It must be noted that Inferi are resistant to most spells: they cannot feel pain, and thus are unaffected by many attacks whose main effect is pain, such as the Cruciatus Curse.