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Old August 16th, 2008, 3:11 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Originally Posted by The_Green_Woods View Post
What makes these three (DD, Snape and voldemort) formidable is their application of their skills, more than anything else IMO.

I agree we don't have others back stories, but we have to go with what we have. I am sure there were others who were just as brilliant if not more brilliant than Dumbledore or Voldmeort or even Snape.

Aong those whom we see, I think Snape was in no way less capable than Dumbledore or Voldemort. Ironically he became the most trusted person of the leader of the 2 sides. He was able to command the trust from them, knowing about Voldemort's plan of killing Dumbeldore and Dumbledore's plan of killing Harry. Both very 9important to the war and the final result.
I would respectfully disagree. Dumbledore kept many secrets from Snape. Most of what Harry was doing and what he discussed with Harry and Snape was not privy to any of the private conversations that Dumbledore had with other Order members. Despite Snape's excellence at Occulmency, Dumbldore did not trust Snape's skill enough to divulge everything to Snape because he had more faith in Voldemort's skill at Legilimency and feared he might be able to get the truth out of Snape. So I am not sure why you feel Snape was the most trusted - it seems to me, Dumbledore had equivalent faith in everyone, and trusted Snape as much as the others; he simply told each person all that he felt they needed to know. Volemort too divulged nothing to Snape that we know of that he had not divulged to others about his plans. We know he taught Snape magic, but he also taught Peter and Lucius magic - and I would guess Bella as well seeing as she was in a higher position than either Peter and Lucius.

But even if we argue that Snape was in the position of a spy and because of that he was aware of what he was, no other member of the Order knew what he did and no DE knew Voldmeort's plan. He was able to inspire confidence because of his skills and capabilities from the 2 leaders.
What plan of Voldemort's are you referring to that Snape knew and no one else did? To my recollection, all of the DEs knew Voldemort's plan with respect to Harry - both as an infant and as an adult.

Snape was Master of potions, DADA, Dark Arts and he had enough knowledge of Charms to craft spells.
Snape was a potions master and he definitely was good at the subject. He was also well versed in the dark arts. But many, many others had equivalent skills, both in these arts and others. There is no evidence that he was a better potions master than Slughorn, for instance. There was also no evidence that he had more mastery over the dark arts than Voldemort. On the contrary - Voldemort seemed to know much more about the subject than Snape did. I would respectfully disagree that Snape mastered DADA, but I respect your view.

I think combined with his courage and reflexes (he exhibits them with Minerva in DH)
I believe that numerous wizards showed courage and quick reflexes in canon - including McGonagall in that very encounter. Dumbledore's against Voldy; Voldy's against Dumbledore's; Lupin's against Lucius'; Hermione's against the DEs in the battle and more. I don't think this serves to show Snape standing out among others in the series in as far as ability.

and his presence of mind and his ability to remain calm under pressure (the whole of 6th year must have been terrible),
I am not certain what this has to do with skill or fighting expertise as a wizard. Could you clarify?

GOF: going back to Voldemort a couple of hours late and convincing him that he was indeed a DE, all come under skill, capability and proper application of knowledge IMO.
Again, I am not certain why this would apply to Snape's skill as a wizard. This speaks to his ability to be convincing, imo. Lucius did the same, managing to talk his way out of torture in GoF and convince Voldemort to accept him back. Other DEs were not so lucky.

Brilliance unless applied properly IMO would be useless. I am sure there were brilliant witches and wizards more than even Albus Dumbeldore, better in logic and everything; Nicholas Flamel springs to mind and there must have been others also. But it was Dumbeldore who applied his intelligence and his skill in such a way that he stood out. In that way, I feel Snape too was brilliant; brilliant in the application of his skills, brains and knowledge in a way that made him formidable. More than others IMO.
I agree that Dumbledore stood out with respect to his skills, but I feel that you have failed to provide any canon evidence that Snape also did so. I respect your view if this is your belief, but I don't feel that we are shown that Snape had any type of extraordinary skill as a wizard that would place him in a class with the greatest wizards of all time. I don't feel that the creation of spells (in line with the Marauders youthful efforts with the amazing Map) nor courage alone places Snape (or the Marauders) in a class with wizards like Dumbledore and Voldemort - or the creators of the Hallows, the Perevells. It is possible that some of these younger wizards like Snape might one day grow into greatness; but since most of them died early, we cannot know.

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