Why must Voldemort's body be killed last?
Why should the Horcruxes be destroyed first?

Clearly duplicates, one much older than the other, both with good answers.

I'm not sure which way to vote, so please advise:

Which one should be marked the duplicate?


2 Answers 2


In these situations, just pick the question you think will be most useful in the future and use it as the target for dup-closure.

Then flag the other question and request that it be merged!

In this way, good answers are not lost or overlooked - instead, they're eventually combined under one question.

I've gone ahead and done this for the questions you reference.

  • 2
    Just to be clear to those not familiar with merging: when you (well, a moderator :) merges 2 questions, they become one single question that combines the existing answers from both previous questions (unlike a duplicate closing where the closed dupe's answers are relegated to being second class citizens). blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/06/improved-question-merging Oct 25, 2014 at 13:43

Generally you'd look at:

  • the age of the questions
  • whether or not the questions have answers (you can't close a question as a duplicate of another question that has no answers)
  • the quality of the questions
  • the quality of the answers

One question is considerably older, they both have at least one good answer, but I'd say the newer question is slightly better written. I don't think there's an obvious closure candidate here, because they're ultimately about the same level of quality.

They also have two (sort of) contradictory answers. DVK presents two possible theories on how Horcruxes function, one which agrees with Beofett's answer and another that would completely contradict that answer. I'd be slightly wary of implying that one answer is more correct by voting a particular way.

All of that to end up saying that I really couldn't decide between the two. Flip a coin? Or leave them both open, nothing bad is happening with them right now.

  • Even after closing they can still be merged to not lose the answers (albeit the acceptance status of one of them).
    – TARS
    Oct 24, 2014 at 10:46
  • @SkyCaptain I'm not familiar enough with the exact mechanics of merging so I didn't want to suggest it as an option. Does it just transfer the answers across, leaving the other question intact (but now apparently unanswered)? Oct 24, 2014 at 10:49
  • There first has to be closure of one of the questions. Then the answers of the closed one get merged (by a moderator) into the open one. This only transfers the answers, but the moved accepted answer becomes unaccepted. And it effectively locks the closed question (though, even closure already prevents further answers). I also only discovered this feature recently as a useful way of handling duplicates that already have valid answers. I haven't yet delved so much into what the broader SE policy for merging is, but if both questions really are exact duplicates this should be the way.
    – TARS
    Oct 24, 2014 at 10:54
  • Just because one is closed as a dupe, does not mean the questions/answers have to be merged. In fact, it's very rarely done.
    – phantom42
    Oct 24, 2014 at 12:44
  • @phantom42 Sure, but when the questions are perfectly equal, I can't see a non-benefit in merging.
    – TARS
    Oct 24, 2014 at 13:19

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