The Death Eaters (originally the Knights of Walpurgis) was the name given to followers of Lord Voldemort. The group primarily consisted of wizards and witches who were radical pure blood supremacists and who practised the Dark Arts with reckless abandon and without regard to or fear of wizarding law. Lord Voldemort used this select group of wizards and witches during both the first and second Wizarding Wars, employing them as his elite force. They often wore black hoods and masks with snake-like eye slits to cover their faces. Only the members of the inner circle of the Death Eaters had Dark Marks burned into their left forearms. When Voldemort touched one of them, each of the Death Eaters felt it, signalling for them to Apparate to their leader's side.
Some Death Eaters managed to elude justice by claiming theImperius Curse had been used on them, such as Lucius Malfoy, or by turning in other Death Eaters, as Igor Karkaroff did. Due to many trying to escape by claiming they were bewitched, the Ministry assigned specialists to find out who was lying, although this did not work out to the fullest since Malfoy and several others were determined innocent. Most followers hid their allegiance to Voldemort and therefore did not try to find him, although a handful of Death Eaters, such as the Lestranges and Barty Crouch Jr., remained fiercely loyal to their fallen master and sought him out. They were supposedly rewarded by Voldemort for their loyalty. Some, such as Evan Rosier, chose to resist arrest and fought to the death.