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Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6



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  #541  
Old April 4th, 2012, 7:06 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

By that logic Harry should have been practicing how to fly a broom before he even came to Hogwarts to be so good at it.

Do we ever see anyone but Voldemort or Snape use legilimency/occlumency? I've always had the impression that those were dark magic. Something which Snape had an affinity for. In fact Harry often complained because Snape just wanted Harry to DO it. He never showed Harry how to do it though. My guess is that occlumency came very easily to Snape.


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  #542  
Old April 4th, 2012, 7:41 pm
Charlotte_Snape  Female.gif Charlotte_Snape is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by StarryVeil View Post
That's a thought! I always just thought that his "I'm just trying to show you they're not as wonderful as everyone seems to think they are" comment sort of implied that he'd caught on to her crush on James and she understood his implication, hence the blush. But when he was only sixteen? That'd be a great accomplishment. My vote is still on the 'hidden implication' explanation, though.
You’re probably right I thought about it some more, and I can only think of a couple other ideas that might support legilimency:

One would be that the intensity of his gaze is what made her blush, so maybe it was something like the unintentional magic that happened with Petunia, where his intense emotion triggered a spark of unexpected legilimency. In that case, the blush would be a bit more than just realizing he suspected her crush on James, it would be a sudden realization that she had potentially just confirmed it to him with her own thoughts.

The other one would be Dumbledore mentioning Harry’s nature to be much more like his mothers, and the fact that Snape never had any trouble seeing into Harry’s mind. Maybe Lily was the same as Harry in this respect, and maybe occlumency & legilimency are things that Snape was naturally talented at?

In Harry’s first occlumency lesson, Snape berated him for not being able to shut down his thoughts and feelings, and warned Harry that a skilled legilimens (Voldemort) would be able to peer "with absurd ease" into the minds of such “fools who wear their hearts proudly on their sleeves”. It's slightly reminiscent of the scene in TPT, towards the end of the argument, when he says to Lily "I just don't want to see you made a fool of".

Now, I don’t think he actually looked down on her and thought of her as “foolish” in a judgmental way (like he did with Harry), but I think he sort of thought she was being a “fool in love” (kidding herself about James, because I think Snape knew on a gut-level that she genuinely admired James for saving his life, but he was convinced somehow that James attraction to her was totally superficial.). Lily was "proudly" defending her housemates = "proudly wearing their hearts on their sleeves". So maybe this incident was on his mind during that first occlumency lesson with Harry.

It might also explain the oddly nice comment he made to Harry that it wasn’t too bad of an effort for his first try Legilimency & Occlumency weren’t taught at Hogwarts, but as advanced learners, it may have been something that Snape & Lily practiced on their own together (this would also be cause for James to feel jealous towards Snape, I would think, if he got to spend one-on-one time with Lily studying some advanced magical art. jmo).


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  #543  
Old April 4th, 2012, 8:48 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by StarryVeil View Post
Oh yes, I know that. In the broad sense, it is love and there's no other way of coining it. Even I refer to it as "love" when I speak about it. But, looking deeper, I think Snape's feelings for Lily were slightly different from your regular romantic love. To me, it felt like there was a slightly obsessive, Heathcliff-ish vibe to it.
I guess I see Severus' love for Lily quite differently. There is nothing that I saw in the books that indicates Severus "obsessing" over Lily. After they parted company, if he'd had an obsession for her IMO, he would have tried to follow her and win her back or maybe even stalk her and James. But he doesn't. He goes about his own life and doesn't really try to get involved in her life until he learns she is in danger.

"Obsessive" also implies that he would have wanted to spend every possible moment with her. But, as we see in SWM he was satisfied with going off to himself and reviewing his OWLS rather than approaching Lily and asking her to join him, which, as a "best friend," you'd think he be entitled to do -- or at least to expect her to notice him and join him on her own. And, even when he's finished he is headed back to the castle and has paid little or no attention to Lily until the encounter with the Marauders. So, there are no signs, that I could see, of Severus being "obsessed" with Lily.

When JKR describes nine-year-old Severus' look as being "greedy" I think that is because, being the only other magical child in the area, Severus was so anxious for company that he wanted to spend time with Lily with no distractions...kind of like a starving person wants to dive into a meal without having to be distracted by socializing while eating. He was desperate for companionship and there was a beautiful little girl who was extremely talented in magic. What a feast for a starving soul.

One statement that is often used to show Severus' obsession or attempt to control Lily is when the says "I won't let you..." But he doesn't get to finish that statement because Lily, as she often did, drew her own conclusions and assumed he was trying to stop her from doing something. I read that passage as his starting to tell her he wouldn't let her be made a fool of by the Marauders. I know there are those who interpret that totally opposite. But, as we don't see any other attempts to "control" Lily, I think I'll stick with my interpretation.

I don't think it would be expected that a nine-year-old would have the same type of feelings of "love" that an adolescent, and then and adult, would have. But, IMO, Severus fell in love with Lily when he first saw her and his love for her grew and adapted as he grew up. But, I've never seen his feelings for her as "obsessive"...tragic, but not obsessive.


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  #544  
Old April 4th, 2012, 10:45 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by flimseycauldron View Post

Do we ever see anyone but Voldemort or Snape use legilimency/occlumency?
Yes Dumbledore. He used Legilimecy on Morfin.

HBP, A Sluggish Memory"But he had this real memory in him all the time!"
"Yes , but it took a great deal of skilled Legilimency to coax it out of him," said Dumbledore.


And we know he was also an Occlumens.

OotP,The Lost Prophecy"Snape stopped giving me Occlumency lessons!" Harry snarled. " He threw me out of his office."
"I am aware of it," said Dumbledore heavily. " I have already said that it was a mistake for me not to teach you myself, though I was sure, at the time, that nothing could have been more dangreous than to open your mind even furthr to Voldemort while in my presence-"


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I've always had the impression that those were dark magic.
Hmmm...I don't think Dumbledore would have wanted Harry to learn Dark Magic.

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Something which Snape had an affinity for. In fact Harry often complained because Snape just wanted Harry to DO it. He never showed Harry how to do it though. My guess is that occlumency came very easily to Snape.
Yes, I think Snape may have possibly had a natural talent for Occlumency. I have always thought that maybe his home life was a factor, and that by the time he was a teenager he began to learn to shut down his emotions when his parents were arguing, as a sort of coping mechanism.



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  #545  
Old April 4th, 2012, 11:05 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by TreacleTartlet View Post
Yes Dumbledore. He used Legilimecy on Morfin.
And he uses it on Kreacher too.


I don't think Lily had a crush on James prior to seventh year when they got together. In SWM James asked her out and she dissed him pretty good.


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  #546  
Old April 5th, 2012, 4:41 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by Melaszka View Post
As I understood it, Goddess_Clio's point is that he must have mastered Occlumency prior to that, because it would be impossible for him to master Occlumency overnight, so he could start keeping Voldemort out of his mind the day after visiting Dumbledore.
Yes, that is what I meant.

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Originally Posted by flimseycauldron View Post
By that logic Harry should have been practicing how to fly a broom before he even came to Hogwarts to be so good at it.
Not necessarily. I think you can have a natural affinity for something (in Harry's case it was flying, in Snape's case it might be occlumency) but I don't think by any means that either or both were dab hands at those activities from the start. I think Harry's ability to fly well was instinctual but that he improved from being a good natural flier to an excellently skilled flier just as I think Snape improved from being a good natural occlumens to be so skilled he could even keep the most talented legilimens out of his mind and that legilimens wouldn't even know it. You don't get that level of talent at magic from a week of trying, it's a honed skill he must have been working on for a long time for Voldemort not to have any inkling Snape was practicing occlumency against him.

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I guess I see Severus' love for Lily quite differently. There is nothing that I saw in the books that indicates Severus "obsessing" over Lily.
I wouldn't really call it "obsessing" either, really, but I do think he took an unnatural interest in her and I think there was certainly some level of unhealthiness in their relationship as evidenced by his blurt about "not letting her" do thing. I think he wanted more control over her than she would allow him to have and I think that was a sticking point between them and a source for a lot of friction.

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After they parted company, if he'd had an obsession for her IMO, he would have tried to follow her and win her back or maybe even stalk her and James. But he doesn't. He goes about his own life and doesn't really try to get involved in her life until he learns she is in danger.
(My underlining)

We don't know if they ever had contact after Snape tried to apologize at the end of their fifth year. We don't know if Snape left her alone and tried to go about his own life. We don't know if he never tried to get involved again. We don't know if they tried to mend their friendship or if Lily dumped him flat on his butt and never even looked at him again. We don't know if she tried to ever appeal to him to leave the Death Eaters if they came across each other in a Death Eater v. Order battle. We don't know because SWM is the last interaction we see of them in canon and there are at least five years of Lily's life after that memory that are unaccounted for.

Personally, with how in love with Lily Snape is presented to be, I have an extremely hard time imagining him just walking away from her after his failed apology and never trying again. I feel like he probably spent his last two years attempting apologies at various times to see if he could in some way win her back.

I never got the impression that Lily would, likewise, just give up on Snape and adpot the attitude of "if he wants to ruin his life than let him get on with it." I think he hurt her immensely in SWM and I don't think she would ever forget that he did that or said that but I don't feel like she would just let him join a group like the Death Eaters if she at all felt like she could do something to stop him.

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"Obsessive" also implies that he would have wanted to spend every possible moment with her. But, as we see in SWM he was satisfied with going off to himself and reviewing his OWLS rather than approaching Lily and asking her to join him, which, as a "best friend," you'd think he be entitled to do -- or at least to expect her to notice him and join him on her own. And, even when he's finished he is headed back to the castle and has paid little or no attention to Lily until the encounter with the Marauders. So, there are no signs, that I could see, of Severus being "obsessed" with Lily.
Obsessed doesn't necessarily mean he wanted to spend every waking moment with with her; to me it means that he was overly preoccupied with her, that he thought about her a lot, maybe too much: what she was doing, where she was going, who she was going with, who she spent her time with, what she was working on, etc. He wouldn't even need to be having these thoughts about her all the time to be considered obsessive about her, and I think, based on some of the memories we are shown of their interactions, that he might have been a little obsessive about her.

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When JKR describes nine-year-old Severus' look as being "greedy" I think that is because, being the only other magical child in the area, Severus was so anxious for company that he wanted to spend time with Lily with no distractions...kind of like a starving person wants to dive into a meal without having to be distracted by socializing while eating. He was desperate for companionship and there was a beautiful little girl who was extremely talented in magic. What a feast for a starving soul.
I totally agree with this; his desire to have someone his own age with the same abilities and probable future as himself as his friend was too enticing.

Quote:
One statement that is often used to show Severus' obsession or attempt to control Lily is when the says "I won't let you..." But he doesn't get to finish that statement because Lily, as she often did, drew her own conclusions and assumed he was trying to stop her from doing something. I read that passage as his starting to tell her he wouldn't let her be made a fool of by the Marauders. I know there are those who interpret that totally opposite. But, as we don't see any other attempts to "control" Lily, I think I'll stick with my interpretation.
The examples I would use to highlight Snape's possible obsessive tendancies would be more his preoccupation with her thoughts about James and her feelings about the Marauders and their all being saintly little gentlemen. Admittedly this is presented as jealousy but I feel like since Snape and Lily's relationship is presented as pretty unhealthy that it's not too much of a stretch to insinuate his jealousy as a bit of obsession.

You're also right about the "I won't let you" line (that it can be interpreted differently) but I personally feel like he was trying to stop her from doing something because just as we have no other evidence of Snape attempting to "control" Lily, neither do we have evidence of the Marauders trying to make a fool of Lily. Also, the tenor of the conversation immediately preceding the "I won't let you" line doesn't really have anything to do with Lily potentially being made a fool of, if anything he's not wanting to let her think well of James. Here's a bit of the exchange:

DH, The Prince's Tale"They don't use dark magic, though." She dropped her voice. "And you're being really ungrateful. I heard what happened the other night. You went sneaking down that tunnel by the whomping willow and James Potter saved you from whatever is down there."

Snape's whole face controted and he spluttered, "Saved? Saved? You think he was playing the hero? He was saving his neck and his friend's, too. You're not going to--I won't let you--"


"I won't let you-- be made a fool of by the marauders" doesn't really fit as the end of that statement to me and while you might not personally think that stopping Lily from thinking well of James is Snape "stopping" her from doing something I think it's a statement more fitting to the conversation going on between them and I do think it shows Snape trying to exercise some undue amount of control over Lily as he has no right to tell her what to believe or what not to believe.

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Originally Posted by mirrormere View Post
I don't think Lily had a crush on James prior to seventh year when they got together. In SWM James asked her out and she dissed him pretty good.
What about her almost smile at him in SWM? What about her blush at Snape's insistance that "They're not as noble as people seem to think they are"? As with my belief that Snape was at least beginning to learn occlumency while still in school I believe that Lily likely had romantic feelings for James prior to their seventh year.

Sorry for the brief foray into OT-land. I know this isn't the James/Lily thread...


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  #547  
Old April 5th, 2012, 6:11 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
Yes, that is what I meant.

Not necessarily. I think you can have a natural affinity for something (in Harry's case it was flying, in Snape's case it might be occlumency) but I don't think by any means that either or both were dab hands at those activities from the start. I think Harry's ability to fly well was instinctual but that he improved from being a good natural flier to an excellently skilled flier just as I think Snape improved from being a good natural occlumens to be so skilled he could even keep the most talented legilimens out of his mind and that legilimens wouldn't even know it. You don't get that level of talent at magic from a week of trying, it's a honed skill he must have been working on for a long time for Voldemort not to have any inkling Snape was practicing occlumency against him.
If we remember, Harry was "zooming around" on a toy broom as an 18-month-old, so he had an affinity for flying from the time he was very young.

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I wouldn't really call it "obsessing" either, really, but I do think he took an unnatural interest in her and I think there was certainly some level of unhealthiness in their relationship as evidenced by his blurt about "not letting her" do thing. I think he wanted more control over her than she would allow him to have and I think that was a sticking point between them and a source for a lot of friction.
I don't see his not wanting her to be made a fool of by the Marauders anymore "unhealthy" than her wanting him to get away from Mulciber and Avery. Each was showing concern for the other. IMO, Severus was intelligent enough to put one and one together about Lupin's monthly disappearances and had concerns for Lily because he knew the Marauders hung out together at those times...he'd followed them. They assumed it was to get them expelled. I think it was to verify that Lupin really was a werewolf. What would he have done with that knowledge? Gone to Dumbledore? If he had, we know it would have ended there. I don't see him going over Dumbledore's head unless Dumbledore did not offer a reasonable explanation/solution.

Lily tried to control Severus's friendships, as well. Her concerns were well-founded, but she was still trying to exert control over him. His concerns about the Marauders was well-founded, too (even Lupin admits to some "close calls" during their adventures), so, sometimes trying to "control" a friend's actions isn't negative, it is a matter of wanting to spare the other physical or emotional harm.

Quote:
(My underlining)

We don't know if they ever had contact after Snape tried to apologize at the end of their fifth year. We don't know if Snape left her alone and tried to go about his own life. We don't know if he never tried to get involved again. We don't know if they tried to mend their friendship or if Lily dumped him flat on his butt and never even looked at him again. We don't know if she tried to ever appeal to him to leave the Death Eaters if they came across each other in a Death Eater v. Order battle. We don't know because SWM is the last interaction we see of them in canon and there are at least five years of Lily's life after that memory that are unaccounted for.

Personally, with how in love with Lily Snape is presented to be, I have an extremely hard time imagining him just walking away from her after his failed apology and never trying again. I feel like he probably spent his last two years attempting apologies at various times to see if he could in some way win her back.
IMO, this is something that would be important enough that JKR would have mentioned it somewhere. She seems to indicate that he went his own way and joined the DEs, so I'd guess the only contact they had was in classes they had together. Also, if he'd been chasing after her and making a pain of himself I'm sure Lupin would have mentioned something about that in some of his conversations with Harry. No one knew that Severus loved Lily the way he did, so he, IMO, had just stayed away from her as much as he could once she kissed him off.

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I never got the impression that Lily would, likewise, just give up on Snape and adpot the attitude of "if he wants to ruin his life than let him get on with it." I think he hurt her immensely in SWM and I don't think she would ever forget that he did that or said that but I don't feel like she would just let him join a group like the Death Eaters if she at all felt like she could do something to stop him.
I think she was just glad for an opportunity to get out of the "friendship" because I think it had become more of a burden to her social status and image with her new friends. She never mentions anything about her concerns for Severus' welfare in any of the memories (other than asking briefly about his home life). When she rails about Avery and Mulciber it's because of what they do to others, not what effect she's afraid they're having on Severus. She seems to have the idea that he is already into Dark Magic, but doesn't seem to express worries that they will pull him further into that, only about what they've done to her Housemate.

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Obsessed doesn't necessarily mean he wanted to spend every waking moment with with her; to me it means that he was overly preoccupied with her, that he thought about her a lot, maybe too much: what she was doing, where she was going, who she was going with, who she spent her time with, what she was working on, etc. He wouldn't even need to be having these thoughts about her all the time to be considered obsessive about her, and I think, based on some of the memories we are shown of their interactions, that he might have been a little obsessive about her.
Is there canon that states how much time he spent being "preoccupied" with her or thought about her "too much"? Being "in love" makes people think a lot about the person they love and want to be with them. But, as I pointed out with SWM, after coming outside from his OWLS, a stressful time when I'd think one would seek the company of their "best friend," Severus walked over and sat alone by a bush. He didn't ask Lily to join him, he didn't try to distract her from her other friends, and he didn't try to get her to accompany him back into the castle. He was just going about his own business. Hardly the actions of an "obsessed" person.

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I totally agree with this; his desire to have someone his own age with the same abilities and probable future as himself as his friend was too enticing.
It's sad that a child is so desperately lonely.

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The examples I would use to highlight Snape's possible obsessive tendancies would be more his preoccupation with her thoughts about James and her feelings about the Marauders and their all being saintly little gentlemen. Admittedly this is presented as jealousy but I feel like since Snape and Lily's relationship is presented as pretty unhealthy that it's not too much of a stretch to insinuate his jealousy as a bit of obsession.
Severus told Lily that James "fancied her." James didn't seem to make a secret of it. We see him writing Lily's initials on a picture of a Snitch after he finishes his OWLS. (We know he stole a Snitch, and IMO, this was one of JKR's little hints that he considered Lily a thing to be stolen.) Jealousy may not be a positive emotion, but I'm sure just about any teen age boy in Severus' position would be jealous if a "jock" was after the girl he loved. I don't find his concerns about James attention to Lily "obsessive" or "unhealthy," just normal for a boy his age.

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You're also right about the "I won't let you" line (that it can be interpreted differently) but I personally feel like he was trying to stop her from doing something because just as we have no other evidence of Snape attempting to "control" Lily, neither do we have evidence of the Marauders trying to make a fool of Lily. Also, the tenor of the conversation immediately preceding the "I won't let you" line doesn't really have anything to do with Lily potentially being made a fool of, if anything he's not wanting to let her think well of James. Here's a bit of the exchange:

DH, The Prince's Tale"They don't use dark magic, though." She dropped her voice. "And you're being really ungrateful. I heard what happened the other night. You went sneaking down that tunnel by the whomping willow and James Potter saved you from whatever is down there."

Snape's whole face controted and he spluttered, "Saved? Saved? You think he was playing the hero? He was saving his neck and his friend's, too. You're not going to--I won't let you--"


"I won't let you-- be made a fool of by the marauders" doesn't really fit as the end of that statement to me and while you might not personally
think that stopping Lily from thinking well of James is Snape "stopping" her from doing something I think it's a statement more fitting to the conversation going on between them and I do think it shows Snape trying to exercise some undue amount of control over Lily as he has no right to tell her what to believe or what not to believe.[/quote]

He might have been getting ready to say "be lied to" or "fooled like that" or some other thing that had nothing to do with controlling Lily, but with trying to alert her to something that was happening.

Yes, we do know that James lied to Lily about stopping his hexing of Severus after he told her he would, and that, IMO, is a type of control. Unfortunately, we are not shown enough of their interactions after SWM. So, it could be the same as you said about Severus making attempts to patch up his friendship with Lily. It might or might not have happened. We just don't know.

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What about her almost smile at him in SWM? What about her blush at Snape's insistance that "They're not as noble as people seem to think they are"? As with my belief that Snape was at least beginning to learn occlumency while still in school I believe that Lily likely had romantic feelings for James prior to their seventh year.
If he was learning Legilimency at that age wouldn't he have been able to know what James' intentions toward Lily were when they were facing off? Wouldn't he have been able to learn that Lupin was werewolf by just talking to him? I don't think it took Legilimency to figure out that James had set his cap for Lily. He wasn't all that subtle about it. Lily may have had those feeling and not acknowledged them to herself until it was pointed out by Severus that James "fancied" her.

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Sorry for the brief foray into OT-land. I know this isn't the James/Lily thread...
IMO, there are times that analyzing one character takes delving into some of actions of others and the impact of those actions on the character being analyzed. There is bound to be some crossover, especially when the actions of the characters are so interwoven as those of Severus, Lily, and James. I think we are trying to keep the discussion about Severus feelings and actions, but, there are other actions that cause him to react so intensely that it's hard not to touch on them.


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  #548  
Old April 5th, 2012, 7:57 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

I think Snape spent his whole life hiding his true feelings about everything. He probably learned how to hide his feelings at home. of course, this is just my opinion, but, sometimes when children are growing up in a unhappy home, they would find it is easier to pretend that everything is o.k. even when it isn't.


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Old April 5th, 2012, 8:29 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
If he was learning Legilimency at that age wouldn't he have been able to know what James' intentions toward Lily were when they were facing off? Wouldn't he have been able to learn that Lupin was werewolf by just talking to him?
I think you're confusing Clio & me The legillimency thing was my idea, Clio's idea is about occlumency.


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Old April 5th, 2012, 10:31 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I guess I see Severus' love for Lily quite differently. There is nothing that I saw in the books that indicates Severus "obsessing" over Lily. After they parted company, if he'd had an obsession for her IMO, he would have tried to follow her and win her back or maybe even stalk her and James. But he doesn't. He goes about his own life and doesn't really try to get involved in her life until he learns she is in danger.
We don’t have any canon to say that he never tried to win her back or stalk her. From the intensity of his feelings for her, I can’t imagine him not gazing at her when she’s in the same room or maybe doubling back in the corridor once or twice to get to walk closer to her. And since you mention James, we actually do have a line from Remus in OoTP that suggests that Snape intentionally brought out his anger on James by initiating hex wars with him. And, no, I don’t feel his statement should be disqualified as “biased” just because he’s James’s close friend. If every statement that Sirius and Remus make about James is coined thus, I don’t see why JKR would even have included those lines.

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"Obsessive" also implies that he would have wanted to spend every possible moment with her. But, as we see in SWM he was satisfied with going off to himself and reviewing his OWLS rather than approaching Lily and asking her to join him, which, as a "best friend," you'd think he be entitled to do -- or at least to expect her to notice him and join him on her own. And, even when he's finished he is headed back to the castle and has paid little or no attention to Lily until the encounter with the Marauders. So, there are no signs, that I could see, of Severus being "obsessed" with Lily.
Meh, I don’t want to go too deep into this – again - so I’ll just reiterate that I don’t feel Snape and Lily were “best friends” like one would refer to the James-Sirius or Harry-Ron pairs. From the scene you mention, it is clear, IMO, she has her own group of girlfriends and those are who she hangs out with generally. Which is why I don’t think Snape was “entitled” to expect her to join him.
As for the whole “obsessive” thing, I simply said “slightly obsessive, Heathcliff-ish vibe” not that his feelings for her were a full-on obsession.

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When JKR describes nine-year-old Severus' look as being "greedy" I think that is because, being the only other magical child in the area, Severus was so anxious for company that he wanted to spend time with Lily with no distractions...kind of like a starving person wants to dive into a meal without having to be distracted by socializing while eating. He was desperate for companionship and there was a beautiful little girl who was extremely talented in magic. What a feast for a starving soul.
I did say in one post (maybe it wasn’t the one you quoted?) that Snape’s behavior was understandable for someone in his circumstances. However, IMO, it doesn’t nullify the fact that his feelings for her engendered an unnatural amount of possessiveness that lasted well into their teenage years.

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One statement that is often used to show Severus' obsession or attempt to control Lily is when the says "I won't let you..." But he doesn't get to finish that statement because Lily, as she often did, drew her own conclusions and assumed he was trying to stop her from doing something. I read that passage as his starting to tell her he wouldn't let her be made a fool of by the Marauders. I know there are those who interpret that totally opposite. But, as we don't see any other attempts to "control" Lily, I think I'll stick with my interpretation.
I honestly don’t think there’s any good way of finishing that statement. “I won’t let you…be made a fool of” firstly, doesn’t fit very well as Clio pointed out, and also remains rather overly protective for a friend of the same age. Plus, that bit went like this:
The Prince’s Tale, DHSnape’s whole face contorted and he spluttered, “Saved? Saved? You think he was playing the hero? He was saving his neck and his friends’ too! You’re not going to—I won’t let you—”

So when he said that, he was concerned about Lily’s opinion of James being heroic, not about her plans of accepting any proposal James might pop on her and, in Snape's opinion, opening herself up for ridicule. It’s only after this that Snape “backtracks” because, IMO, he realizes he has revealed too much of his possessiveness and tries to cover it up by saying he doesn’t want to see her made a fool of. JMO, of course.

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
I wouldn't really call it "obsessing" either, really, but I do think he took an unnatural interest in her and I think there was certainly some level of unhealthiness in their relationship as evidenced by his blurt about "not letting her" do thing. I think he wanted more control over her than she would allow him to have and I think that was a sticking point between them and a source for a lot of friction.
Yes, that’s exactly what I feel about Snape’s feelings for Lily.

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I never got the impression that Lily would, likewise, just give up on Snape and adpot the attitude of "if he wants to ruin his life than let him get on with it." I think he hurt her immensely in SWM and I don't think she would ever forget that he did that or said that but I don't feel like she would just let him join a group like the Death Eaters if she at all felt like she could do something to stop him.
After the break-up scene, I actually think she did sort of give up on him. That is why that’s the last memory he gives of him and Lily in school. If she continued trying to talk him out of becoming a DE, I feel like we would have seen a scene of that sort. She’d been fighting for him for years and he never got the message. How long could she keep repeating the same thing? As for forgetting…can anyone forget something like that? I doubt Hermione would ever forget about Malfoy calling her Mudblood in their second year, let alone Lily forgetting that her first magical friend had thrown the same racial slur at her. I think she simply decided he was a lost cause after some time and moved on with her own life.

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
Yes, we do know that James lied to Lily about stopping his hexing of Severus after he told her he would, and that, IMO, is a type of control.
That would be like saying Ron was controlling Hermione by lying to her about Confunding his driving instructor to get his license. Plus, it wasn’t James’s “hexing of Snape” – it was reaction to Snape’s initiation, as Remus points out. I doubt DD would have let James retain the Head Boy post if he continued to pull more SWMs. And, as Harry mentioned, DD seems to know everything that goes on in the castle so I doubt even secretly held hex wars could have been kept secret from him.

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We see him writing Lily's initials on a picture of a Snitch after he finishes his OWLS. (We know he stole a Snitch, and IMO, this was one of JKR's little hints that he considered Lily a thing to be stolen.)
IMO, his unconscious comparison of Lily to the Snitch implied that he thought her as elusive as the Snitch. His opinion is confirmed by the disdainful telling-off he receives from her a few minutes later. But I'm straying from the thread's topic...


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  #551  
Old April 5th, 2012, 11:02 pm
Goddess_Clio  Female.gif Goddess_Clio is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
If we remember, Harry was "zooming around" on a toy broom as an 18-month-old, so he had an affinity for flying from the time he was very young.
I don't think this is proof of Harry's extraordinary ability on a broomstick manifesting itself at 18-months old. As said in the name of the thing itself it's a toy and not a real broomstick. I imagine there is a lot of magic going on that would give a mother the confidence to let her toddler ride around on it. It's likely that the toy broom has charms on it to keep the kid from falling off among other things; I doubt an 18-month old child who could barely navigate a set of stairs has the physcial strength and coordination to stay on top of a broom on its own.

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IMO, this is something that would be important enough that JKR would have mentioned it somewhere.
The thing is, though, it wasn't Severus Snape and the Friendship that Went Bad, it was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Snape had no reason to show Harry memory after memory of himself groveling to Lily. He showed Harry one instance of himself apologizing to prove that he wasn't "through with Lily," that he wasn't ready to give up on the friendship, that he regretted his actions and that he still loved her in order to get Harry to trust what he was about to reveal to him was the truth. Whether Lily and Snape continued to have interactions, bad or good, after Snape's Worst Memory is kind of unimportant in terms of Harry's story so I disagree that it was important enough that JKR would have mentioned it somewhere.

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if he'd been chasing after her and making a pain of himself I'm sure Lupin would have mentioned something about that in some of his conversations with Harry.
Why would Lupin know? If Snape was going to repeatedly make attempts at apologies it seems to me that his introverted nature would drive him to make those apologies in the least public ways possible - he might have cornered Lily on her way to or from the library late at night, written her notes or letters, tried to visit her over the summer when no other students were around... Snape does not seem like the type of person who would want to make a public spectacle of himself as he tries to right a wrong. I see no issue with Lupin having no idea what was going on between them.

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I think she was just glad for an opportunity to get out of the "friendship" because I think it had become more of a burden to her social status and image with her new friends.
Lily never seemed to be a social climber and I don't think she saw her friendship with Snape as a burden - if she had she wouldn't have spent years defending him to her friends (which, BTW, would have killed any social status she had with her friends). Your statement above sounds more like a description of James or Sirius crica fifth year than Lily at any time. To me, at least.

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She never mentions anything about her concerns for Severus' welfare in any of the memories (other than asking briefly about his home life).
Isn't that right there showing concern for his welfare? We're also not shown casual interactions, we're shown heated ones, we're shown conflicts, we're shown memories of them arguing. IMO, we can't condemn Lily for only showing concern for Snape's welfare once in the miniscule percentage of their relationship we get to see.

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When she rails about Avery and Mulciber it's because of what they do to others, not what effect she's afraid they're having on Severus.
It seems to me that being more concerned in that moment about a potentially lethal, certainly dangerous attack on another student and the fact that your friend is writing it off as "a laugh" than with that friend's welfare at the moment you're arguing with them is kind of understandable.

And who knows what Lily would have continued to say had Snape not suddenly changed the subject on her. That was a fairly fast-moving argument they were having. In a four-minute long memory (from the timer on my audiobook which includes narration of action) they discuss Mulciber and Avery's attack on Mary, Lupin being a werewolf, James saving Snape's life, the marauders being (or not being) wonderful, James fancying Lily, and Mulciber and Avery being evil. Quite a lot to cover; it's a wonder Lily couldn't fit in a comment about Snape's welfare.

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She seems to have the idea that he is already into Dark Magic, but doesn't seem to express worries that they will pull him further into that, only about what they've done to her Housemate.
That's quite a thing to worry about, though! My impression of what happened to Mary was that it was quite serious, not just a prank gone bad but a life-threatening attack or, at the least, something that would leave her permanently scarred or handicapped. And, again, we don't know how the argument would have progressed had it remained on the subject of Mary's attack rather than jumping around to other topics.

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Is there canon that states how much time he spent being "preoccupied" with her or thought about her "too much"?
Not in so many words, no, because 95% of the Snape we get in canon is adult-Snape from Harry's POV, not young-Snape from his own perspective. Even the young-Snape we get is heavily filtered by Snape himself in a way to show that he loved Harry's mother, that their relationship fell apart but that he always loved her, and that his actions toward Harry have (more or less) always been for Harry's own good. But he is described by Lily and in canon as being obsessive. I'd also point out that it's possible to infer Snape's greedy look at Lily on the swings as the result of his obsessing over how to approach her.

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Being "in love" makes people think a lot about the person they love and want to be with them. But, as I pointed out with SWM, after coming outside from his OWLS, a stressful time when I'd think one would seek the company of their "best friend," Severus walked over and sat alone by a bush. He didn't ask Lily to join him, he didn't try to distract her from her other friends, and he didn't try to get her to accompany him back into the castle. He was just going about his own business. Hardly the actions of an "obsessed" person.
IMO, that moment was presented that way to keep it ambiguous and to make you think that it was James's treatment of Snape that made that moment his worst memory; a literary choice made for story-telling purposes and for the purposes of the grand reveal of Snape's feelings toward Lily in DH.

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Severus told Lily that James "fancied her." James didn't seem to make a secret of it.
But Snape did seem to keep his own feelings a secret.

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We see him writing Lily's initials on a picture of a Snitch after he finishes his OWLS. (We know he stole a Snitch, and IMO, this was one of JKR's little hints that he considered Lily a thing to be stolen.)
Not sure I agree with this statement but it's interesting.

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Jealousy may not be a positive emotion, but I'm sure just about any teen age boy in Severus' position would be jealous if a "jock" was after the girl he loved. I don't find his concerns about James attention to Lily "obsessive" or "unhealthy," just normal for a boy his age.
I'd say jealousy is a normal reaction, too, but I'd also still say that Snape and Lily's relationship was unhealthy, that he seemed more invested in her than she was in him because he (probably) had a harder time making friends than she did so he held on tighter.

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He might have been getting ready to say "be lied to" or "fooled like that" or some other thing that had nothing to do with controlling Lily, but with trying to alert her to something that was happening.
It's my opinion that readers are meant interpret his faltering statment of "I won't let you--" as him wanting to stop her from doing something for feeling something toward James. We must agree to disagree.

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Yes, we do know that James lied to Lily about stopping his hexing of Severus after he told her he would
But that's not an example of James trying to consciously make a fool of Lily which was my original point.

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If he was learning Legilimency at that age wouldn't he have been able to know what James' intentions toward Lily were when they were facing off? Wouldn't he have been able to learn that Lupin was werewolf by just talking to him? I don't think it took Legilimency to figure out that James had set his cap for Lily. He wasn't all that subtle about it. Lily may have had those feeling and not acknowledged them to herself until it was pointed out by Severus that James "fancied" her.
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Originally Posted by Charlotte_Snape View Post
I think you're confusing Clio & me The legillimency thing was my idea, Clio's idea is about occlumency.
My original point was about Snape learning occlumency while in school, yes. I do have a suspicion that Snape might have learned legilimency is school, though I don't think he learned it or had an inclination to learn it until after he and Lily broke up at the end of their fifth year. I think Snape might have wanted to learn legilimency so that he could read Lily's mind and find a way to get her back. In that sense than yes, MinervasCat would be correct in saying he could read James's mind and know what James's intentions toward Lily were (which would also fuel his hatred of James if he's thinking about Lily in the way all teenagers think of those they fancy... ) or read Lupin's mind and find out he was, indeed, a werewolf. The caveat, though, is that I think Snape would have learned legilimency after he was pretty darn certain about all those things so in terms of those discoveries there wouldn't be anything earth-shattering.

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IMO, there are times that analyzing one character takes delving into some of actions of others and the impact of those actions on the character being analyzed. There is bound to be some crossover, especially when the actions of the characters are so interwoven as those of Severus, Lily, and James. I think we are trying to keep the discussion about Severus feelings and actions, but, there are other actions that cause him to react so intensely that it's hard not to touch on them.
Yes, but this is the Snape thread and I don't really enjoy getting warnings from moderators to get back on topic so I'm trying really hard not to stray too far from Snape himself or the actions of Lily that are directly related to her interactions with him.


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  #552  
Old April 6th, 2012, 4:50 am
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MinervasCat  Female.gif MinervasCat is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
I don't think this is proof of Harry's extraordinary ability on a broomstick manifesting itself at 18-months old. As said in the name of the thing itself it's a toy and not a real broomstick. I imagine there is a lot of magic going on that would give a mother the confidence to let her toddler ride around on it. It's likely that the toy broom has charms on it to keep the kid from falling off among other things; I doubt an 18-month old child who could barely navigate a set of stairs has the physcial strength and coordination to stay on top of a broom on its own.
I don’t think Harry had “extraordinary” flying talents as a baby, but Ron couldn’t even get his broom off the ground in his first year at Hogwarts, and he’d grown up around them. Harry and Draco were the only ones who could fly during the first flying lesson. Harry was flying, even if it was on a “toy” broom, at about 18 months. Therefore, IMO, it is logical to assume that Harry had an affinity for flying.

However, Severus was so shy he was barely able to work up the courage to approach Lily and was very self conscious as a child. Both Legilimency and Occlumency take extreme self-control, which Severus did not exhibit during the time we see him in school. If he had been that well controlled he would have been able to subdue his emotions and might not have blurted out “filthy little Mudblood,” no matter how frustrated or humiliated he was. I think this was when he began to work on controlling his thoughts and feelings because he was determined never to let himself get caught in that type of situation again. And, since Occlumency and Legilimency seem to go hand in hand, I think that was when he began to seriously study both. More than likely he had a good grasp of each of them when he started in the DEs, and may have used his skills before turning spy. But, I think he honed them by working with Dumbledore after coming over to the good side because it would have been as much to Dumbledore’s advantage for him to be an outstanding Occlumens and Legilimens almost as much as it was to Severus’ advantage.

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The thing is, though, it wasn't Severus Snape and the Friendship that Went Bad, it was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Snape had no reason to show Harry memory after memory of himself groveling to Lily. He showed Harry one instance of himself apologizing to prove that he wasn't "through with Lily," that he wasn't ready to give up on the friendship, that he regretted his actions and that he still loved her in order to get Harry to trust what he was about to reveal to him was the truth. Whether Lily and Snape continued to have interactions, bad or good, after Snape's Worst Memory is kind of unimportant in terms of Harry's story so I disagree that it was important enough that JKR would have mentioned it somewhere.
“The Prince’s Tale” is one of the most important and pivotal chapters in the entire series, And, although they were Severus’ memories, it was ultimately the author, Ms. Rowling, who decided what to show us of Severus’ past. There were many little details that she slipped in throughout the series, but this is the chapter where she brings everything together. That’s why I feel if there had been anything as important as Severus trying to mend their friendship or maintain contact with Lily after SWM JKR would have shown it. However, she seemed to make it pretty emphatic that when Lily turned and entered the Gryffindor Common Room it was the end of Severus’ contact with her. There seemed to be a definite finality to that scene.

Also, I, personally, have always thought that JKR had Severus show the particular memories he did concerning his and Lily’s friendship as a sign of remorse. He showed Harry the terrible errors he’d made as a young man, and what he’d done to set them right. IMO, it was the only way he, as a dying man, had of saying “I’m sorry.” He could have won Harry’s trust just through the memories of Dumbledore. He didn’t have to show any others, the very personal ones. I think he wanted Harry to know how much he loved Lily, how sorry he was for having any part in her death, and how he had worked so hard for so long to make up for it. And, I think he wanted Harry to understand why he’d had the animosity toward him at the start, and that he couldn’t even drop it later because he had to maintain his cover. Showing such personal and painful memories would have been difficult for Severus, and I think it would have taken more than just gaining Harry’s trust for him to release them.

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Why would Lupin know? If Snape was going to repeatedly make attempts at apologies it seems to me that his introverted nature would drive him to make those apologies in the least public ways possible - he might have cornered Lily on her way to or from the library late at night, written her notes or letters, tried to visit her over the summer when no other students were around... Snape does not seem like the type of person who would want to make a public spectacle of himself as he tries to right a wrong. I see no issue with Lupin having no idea what was going on between them.
Lupin was there with James and Lily through their last years of school together and during their time in the first Order of the Phoenix. I’m sure if Severus was trying to reestablish contact with her James and/or Sirius would have been up in arms and something would have been mentioned. As I said previously, the scene at the Common Room door seems to have a certain finality about it when Lily went back through that door. It was the end. He was shut out of Lily’s life. “….You’ve chosen your way, I’ve chosen mine.” That doesn’t indicate that she’s going to make any additional effort to try to help him and pretty much says she doesn’t want anything to do with him from there on.

If not Lupin, then definitely Sirius. He and James were inseparable. If Severus had made a move to reconcile with Lily I’m pretty sure Sirius would have known it. And, having no love for Severus, he would have been glad to tell Harry all about how he continued to tag after Lily like a love-sick puppy. I just don’t see it as something that could have been hidden that easily. JMO, though.

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Lily never seemed to be a social climber and I don't think she saw her friendship with Snape as a burden - if she had she wouldn't have spent years defending him to her friends (which, BTW, would have killed any social status she had with her friends). Your statement above sounds more like a description of James or Sirius crica fifth year than Lily at any time. To me, at least.
The fact that a best friend “makes excuses” instead of just telling those who criticized him to [staff edit] speaks volumes to me. And, the way she tells him how none of her “friends” can even understand why she talks to him – she’s just as good as telling him that he isn’t one of her friends, just someone she’s tired of making excuses for. I see Lily as an opportunist who used Severus when he was useful and then shed him like a Basilisk skin when he lost that usefulness. But, that’s just my opinion of her. But, we can take this to the Lily thread.

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Isn't that right there showing concern for his welfare? We're also not shown casual interactions, we're shown heated ones, we're shown conflicts, we're shown memories of them arguing. IMO, we can't condemn Lily for only showing concern for Snape's welfare once in the miniscule percentage of their relationship we get to see.
I did state that she showed concern that time and I'm not condemning her, just trying to establish that "concern" only seems to be on Lily's part while any concern Severus shows seems to be considered an attempt to control Lily.

IMO, when Severus starts to say, “….You’re not going to — I won’t let you….” he was going to say something like “You’re not going to believe that tripe, are you?” and “I won’t let you be made a fool of…,” or some variation of those statements after being gob smacked by hearing the story of James’ heroic saving of his life, a story no one was suppose let out. But Lily finished his sentence with a negative assumption rather than listening to see what he was going to say.

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It seems to me that being more concerned in that moment about a potentially lethal, certainly dangerous attack on another student and the fact that your friend is writing it off as "a laugh" than with that friend's welfare at the moment you're arguing with them is kind of understandable.
As has been pointed out many times, we really do not know what happened to Mary Macdonald. We don’t know how dangerous, nearly lethal, evil, or Dark it was. We don’t even know for sure that Lily got her information first hand or whether she got it from Mary or someone else who was there. That’s one place it would have been so helpful to have had some more detail from the author.

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And who knows what Lily would have continued to say had Snape not suddenly changed the subject on her. That was a fairly fast-moving argument they were having. In a four-minute long memory (from the timer on my audiobook which includes narration of action) they discuss Mulciber and Avery's attack on Mary, Lupin being a werewolf, James saving Snape's life, the marauders being (or not being) wonderful, James fancying Lily, and Mulciber and Avery being evil. Quite a lot to cover; it's a wonder Lily couldn't fit in a comment about Snape's welfare.
Nor could Severus seem to be able to complete a comment about his concerns for her.

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That's quite a thing to worry about, though! My impression of what happened to Mary was that it was quite serious, not just a prank gone bad but a life-threatening attack or, at the least, something that would leave her permanently scarred or handicapped. And, again, we don't know how the argument would have progressed had it remained on the subject of Mary's attack rather than jumping around to other topics.
As I said, we do not know for certain what happened to Mary, but it obviously didn’t leave her handicapped or scarred as I’m sure Lily would have mentioned that in her diatribe. Also, Mary was the one who told Lily that Severus was at the Common Room door after SWM. She seemed OK then.

According to Severus it was a joke. Lily thinks it was Dark Magic. Since neither mentions any punishment for Mulciber whatever he tried to do must not have been that bad. I’m pretty sure that even Hogwarts had severe punishments for using Dark Magic on another student.

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Not in so many words, no, because 95% of the Snape we get in canon is adult-Snape from Harry's POV, not young-Snape from his own perspective. Even the young-Snape we get is heavily filtered by Snape himself in a way to show that he loved Harry's mother, that their relationship fell apart but that he always loved her, and that his actions toward Harry have (more or less) always been for Harry's own good. But he is described by Lily and in canon as being obsessive. I'd also point out that it's possible to infer Snape's greedy look at Lily on the swings as the result of his obsessing over how to approach her.
I already stated that I feel his “greedy” look had to do with his desperate need for companionship with another magical child. He was alone and lonely. He wanted and needed someone else just as all humans do. When he saw someone with the talent that Lily exhibited who lived so close to him it must have been like Christmas come early. I don’t see that as “obsessive.”

I haven't actually done a calculation so I can't say for sure, but I don’t see that much “filtering” going on as far as Severus feelings about Lily. He loved her from the time he first saw her and he loved her until the day he died. I think that is reflected in the purity of his Patronus, the feeling that Harry got from it in the forest. If it truly was a reflection of his love for Lily by being the same as her’s, it certainly doesn’t seem to indicate anything as negative as obsession.

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IMO, that moment was presented that way to keep it ambiguous and to make you think that it was James's treatment of Snape that made that moment his worst memory; a literary choice made for story-telling purposes and for the purposes of the grand reveal of Snape's feelings toward Lily in DH.
Not quite sure what that has to do with Severus' actions (i.e. going to sit by the bush, studying over his OWL papers, then starting back toward the castle), but no, “Snape’s Worst Memory” was calling the girl he loved a Mudblood and putting an end to their friendship. I didn’t interpret it to have anything to do with James.

What I was pointing out is that he exhibited no possessiveness, such as approaching Lily and asking her to come sit with him, or to trying to get to her leave with him when he was returning to the castle. He did not show a possessive/obsessive attitude toward her. She was with her Housemates and he went and sat away from her, then started back to the castle without bothering her. I wasn’t relating this to anything that had to do with James or his attack on Severus. Just trying to show that Severus seemed comfortable doing things without Lily even though she was nearby.

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But Snape did seem to keep his own feelings a secret.
I think he was too shy to express them. Maybe he hoped she would understand him well enough after nearly 6-7 years of friendship to know how he felt about her. If he told her and she spurned him, then he had no friend or girlfriend. IMO, he felt it better to just maintain the “friendship” and let the romantic part go for a bit. He could love her from afar and spend time with her, where, by letting his true feeling show he might be laughed at. I think his ego was way too fragile to take the chance.


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Not sure I agree with this statement but it's interesting.
That's fine.

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I'd say jealousy is a normal reaction, too, but I'd also still say that Snape and Lily's relationship was unhealthy, that he seemed more invested in her than she was in him because he (probably) had a harder time making friends than she did so he held on tighter.
I don’t see how that makes it “unhealthy.” Just because Lily was socially more adept and Severus lacked self-esteem and self confidence doesn’t make his love for her “unhealthy.” I don’t think it’s fair to judge that an individual is “obsessed” with someone else or that their love for them is “unhealthy” just because the person they love is more outgoing and self assured.

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It's my opinion that readers are meant interpret his faltering statment of "I won't let you--" as him wanting to stop her from doing something for feeling something toward James. We must agree to disagree.
Seems that way. It’s all in the interpretation.

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But that's not an example of James trying to consciously make a fool of Lily which was my original point.
I would say that lying to someone when you’ve promised them you would not do something, then continue to do it is a controlling action and is making a fool of that person.


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My original point was about Snape learning occlumency while in school, yes. I do have a suspicion that Snape might have learned legilimency is school, though I don't think he learned it or had an inclination to learn it until after he and Lily broke up at the end of their fifth year. I think Snape might have wanted to learn legilimency so that he could read Lily's mind and find a way to get her back. In that sense than yes, MinervasCat would be correct in saying he could read James's mind and know what James's intentions toward Lily were (which would also fuel his hatred of James if he's thinking about Lily in the way all teenagers think of those they fancy... ) or read Lupin's mind and find out he was, indeed, a werewolf. The caveat, though, is that I think Snape would have learned legilimency after he was pretty darn certain about all those things so in terms of those discoveries there wouldn't be anything earth-shattering.
I don’t’ think he needed Legilimency to tell what James thought of Lily. He was pretty obvious with his flirting and trying to impress her with the story of his heroism in saving Severus’ life, among other things (the sketch of the Snitch with her initials…). So Severus didn't have to be a Legilimens to see James was interested in her.

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Yes, but this is the Snape thread and I don't really enjoy getting warnings from moderators to get back on topic so I'm trying really hard not to stray too far from Snape himself or the actions of Lily that are directly related to her interactions with him.
As we all are. There are just many times they bleed over and incidents are difficult to separate.


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Last edited by Melaszka; April 6th, 2012 at 5:28 pm. Reason: Language
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Old April 6th, 2012, 8:45 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
But love doesn't always spring into existence as "love", it often begins as friendship and develops into a crush before becoming love. I think Snape came to Hogwarts with a crush on Lily and left Hogwarts fully in love with her.
That's your opinion, and everyone sees love differently, I guess.

But in the books, I feel that childhood friendship is seen as a type of real love, which is sort of the point of Prince's Tale, as well as the scenes in GoF when the champions have to rescue their "most important person" from the lake (which is a little bit of foreshadowing for Snape's story, imo, because the Lake is associated with Slytherin). We also have the fact that in Chamber of Secrets, Harry displays devotion to both Hermione and Ginny because he really cares about them. I personally don't see Snape's feelings for Lily as any different than that.

I just take Harry's words as canon, and again he doesn't distinguish what Snape felt as a boy from the way he felt as a teenager. Nor does he distinguish it as anything other than real valid love, in my opinion.

Snape's Patronus was a doe,' said Harry, 'the same as my mother's, because he loved her for nearly all of his life, from the time when they were children."


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  #554  
Old April 6th, 2012, 9:12 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
As I said, we do not know for certain what happened to Mary, but it obviously didn’t leave her handicapped or scarred as I’m sure Lily would have mentioned that in her diatribe. Also, Mary was the one who told Lily that Severus was at the Common Room door after SWM. She seemed OK then.
To be fair though, when James de-pansed Snape, that didn't leave any permanent visible marks on him, either, yet I have seen it criticised as a severe act of bullying. Just because Mary wasn't hospitalised for a longer period of time doesn't mean that what they did to her was trifles. Lily mentioned the incident as something remarkable, something that made her call Snape's future-DE friends 'evil'. Personally, I don't think she used this term lightly and unjustly. And it always seemed to me that adult!Snape included this memory to show that, yes, Lily warned him, but he didn't listen until it was too late, which would then become the biggest tragedy and regret of his life.


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Old April 6th, 2012, 9:57 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
Is there canon that states how much time he spent being "preoccupied" with her or thought about her "too much"? Being "in love" makes people think a lot about the person they love and want to be with them. But, as I pointed out with SWM, after coming outside from his OWLS, a stressful time when I'd think one would seek the company of their "best friend," Severus walked over and sat alone by a bush. He didn't ask Lily to join him, he didn't try to distract her from her other friends, and he didn't try to get her to accompany him back into the castle. He was just going about his own business. Hardly the actions of an "obsessed" person.
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Severus told Lily that James "fancied her." James didn't seem to make a secret of it. We see him writing Lily's initials on a picture of a Snitch after he finishes his OWLS.
I'd say that looking at the scene after the OWL exam, Snape is not the one displaying obsessive behaviour. Just my opinion.

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
It seems to me that being more concerned in that moment about a potentially lethal, certainly dangerous attack on another student and the fact that your friend is writing it off as "a laugh" than with that friend's welfare at the moment you're arguing with them is kind of understandable.
I wonder how Snape felt when Lily showed no concern for his safety after she had heard he was saved by James Potter. Yes, one can argue it was his stupidity that got him in the situation in the first place. However, what strikes me is that as his so called friend, even "best" friend, Lily never asks him anything about it. Not even why he was there in the first place. I can only speak for myself but if I heard such a story about a friend, I know I would want to hear all about it from them. And, I have to wonder how this made Snape feel that Lily showed no concern or interest in his view of the story.



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It's my opinion that readers are meant interpret his faltering statment of "I won't let you--" as him wanting to stop her from doing something for feeling something toward James. We must agree to disagree.
I think it is useful to look at Snape's whole speech in order to help ascertain his meaning here.

DH, The Prince's Tale"Saved? Saved? You think he was playing the hero? He was saving his neck and his friends too! You're not going to -I won't let you -"


From looking at this in context,it is my interpretation that Snape is angry that Lily has only been told half of the story. He thinks that James was part of the plan to send him down the tunnel in the first place. And, from his past experience with James it is not an unreasonable assumption for him to make in my mind. Yet here he is listening to Lily singing James' praises. By this time Snape knows that James fancies Lily, and I think Snape thinks that James is using this story to help make himself look a hero, when according to him he is not. So in my opinion, when Snape says "I won't let you-" he is trying to say he won't let her be taken in by James' false heroics. Unfortunately, I think he shows his frustration at not being able to enlighten her, being as he was forbidden to tell anyone about Lupin.



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  #556  
Old April 6th, 2012, 12:49 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
Why would Lupin know? If Snape was going to repeatedly make attempts at apologies it seems to me that his introverted nature would drive him to make those apologies in the least public ways possible - he might have cornered Lily on her way to or from the library late at night, written her notes or letters, tried to visit her over the summer when no other students were around... Snape does not seem like the type of person who would want to make a public spectacle of himself as he tries to right a wrong.
And yet, the only time we see him try to right this particular wrong, this is exactly what he does. He parks himself outside the door of the Gryffindor Common Room, and tells people coming in and out the door that he wants to speak to Lily. So apparently, he is that type.


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  #557  
Old April 6th, 2012, 4:51 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I don’t think Harry had “extraordinary” flying talents as a baby, but Ron couldn’t even get his broom off the ground in his first year at Hogwarts, and he’d grown up around them. Harry and Draco were the only ones who could fly during the first flying lesson. Harry was flying, even if it was on a “toy” broom, at about 18 months. Therefore, IMO, it is logical to assume that Harry had an affinity for flying.
So a 5-year-old who can operate an electric car has an affinity for driving? A toddler who can squeeze play-doh has an affinity for sculpture? A child who can assemble Legos has an affinity for construction? A child who can kick or throw a ball has an affinity for sports? No! These are all learned skills, just like flying. IMO the toy broom Harry was given had the ability to fly on its own, was probably charmed to keep the child on top of it and not let them fall off and was a toy.

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However, Severus was so shy he was barely able to work up the courage to approach Lily and was very self conscious as a child. Both Legilimency and Occlumency take extreme self-control, which Severus did not exhibit during the time we see him in school. If he had been that well controlled he would have been able to subdue his emotions and might not have blurted out “filthy little Mudblood,” no matter how frustrated or humiliated he was. I think this was when he began to work on controlling his thoughts and feelings because he was determined never to let himself get caught in that type of situation again.
I said toward the end of my previous post that I think Snape only started learning legilimency and/or occlumency after SWM so that would have been his sixth year at the very earliest because I agree that in his early career at Hogwarts he didn't have great impulse control or control over his emotions. That was a learned skill (just like flying ) but I do feel like he had the foundations laid for such a skill from his homelife.

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“The Prince’s Tale” is one of the most important and pivotal chapters in the entire series, And, although they were Severus’ memories, it was ultimately the author, Ms. Rowling, who decided what to show us of Severus’ past.
It was also the fourth to last chapter of the entire series (not counting the epilogue) and there was a heck of a lot of momentum pushing the story toward its conclusion. To stop the narrative to wax poetic about how Snape tried for five years to get Lily back would have been a waste of that precious time in the story and would have bogged down the pace. It's my opinion that the memories Snape showed to Harry were to serve the purpose of showing 1) that he loved Lily, 2) that their relationship fell apart because of a difference of opinion about the dark arts, 3) that he did tried to apologize to her and 4) that all of those childhood memories were meant to gain Harry's trust and show Harry that Snape's intentions were good. To show repeated apologies over several memories would have served no purpose other than to slow the forthcoming conclusion of Harry's story.

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However, she seemed to make it pretty emphatic that when Lily turned and entered the Gryffindor Common Room it was the end of Severus’ contact with her. There seemed to be a definite finality to that scene.
Must agree to disagree again, I'm afraid.

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Also, I, personally, have always thought that JKR had Severus show the particular memories he did concerning his and Lily’s friendship as a sign of remorse. He showed Harry the terrible errors he’d made as a young man, and what he’d done to set them right. IMO, it was the only way he, as a dying man, had of saying “I’m sorry.” He could have won Harry’s trust just through the memories of Dumbledore. He didn’t have to show any others, the very personal ones. I think he wanted Harry to know how much he loved Lily, how sorry he was for having any part in her death, and how he had worked so hard for so long to make up for it.
Another agree to disagree moment because I don't feel like those memories were given to Harry out of any kind of desire for atonement. I think they were given to gain Harry's trust and to make a sort of explanation for himself and his actions - not an apology, an explanation; I do think Snape regretted the part he played in Lily's death but I don't think he at all felt like he needed to apologize to Harry for it.

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And, I think he wanted Harry to understand why he’d had the animosity toward him at the start, and that he couldn’t even drop it later because he had to maintain his cover.
I don't think Snape ever had a desire to drop the animosity he felt for Harry - Harry reminded him of James in every single way except in the color and shape of his eyes. Every time Snape looked at Harry he saw James and it's pretty clear from Snape's interactions with Sirius and Lupin that he never ever had a desire to fogive and forget with them, why would he even want to try to forgive and forget with the son of his biggest nemisis, the man who married and impregnated the love of Snape's life, the usurper, the show off?

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Lupin was there with James and Lily through their last years of school together and during their time in the first Order of the Phoenix. I’m sure if Severus was trying to reestablish contact with her James and/or Sirius would have been up in arms and something would have been mentioned.
I doubt if James or Sirius (or Lupin or Peter) were around Lily Snape would have approached her to attempt an apology. I doubt Lily would ever have turned to James over dinner and said, "Your biggest enemy and boy you've hated since you first laid eyes on him who used to be my best friend tried to apologize to me again today. Please pass the mashed potatoes." Lily knew the animosity that existed between the marauders and Snape and I doubt she was spouting off to either side knowing it could cause of fire storm of fighting to break out between them.

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If not Lupin, then definitely Sirius. He and James were inseparable. If Severus had made a move to reconcile with Lily I’m pretty sure Sirius would have known it. And, having no love for Severus, he would have been glad to tell Harry all about how he continued to tag after Lily like a love-sick puppy. I just don’t see it as something that could have been hidden that easily. JMO, though.
You're making the assumption that Sirius knew, though. Why should he have known? Do you think Snape would have waltzed up to Lily right in front of Sirius and James, his two greatest enemies at Hogwarts, and tried to say he was sorry again? Do you think Lily would have told James (and by extention Sirius who James most certainly would have told) about Snape's attempts when it's possible it could have sent James out into the castle to "settle the score" with Snape?

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The fact that a best friend “makes excuses” instead of just telling those who criticized him to sod off speaks volumes to me. And, the way she tells him how none of her “friends” can even understand why she talks to him – she’s just as good as telling him that he isn’t one of her friends, just someone she’s tired of making excuses for.
Lily refering to, say, Mary as a friend to Snape does not mean that Snape is not also Lily's friend. It means, to me, that Mary and Snape are not friends, not that Mary and Snape are not both Lily's friends. You can be friends with two people who are not friends with each other but that does not mean your friendship with either of them separately is any less real. Would you say Harry is not friends with Hermione when Hermione and Ron are fighting? No. He's friends with both of them still, but they (in that moment) might not be friends with each other.

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I did state that she showed concern that time and I'm not condemning her, just trying to establish that "concern" only seems to be on Lily's part while any concern Severus shows seems to be considered an attempt to control Lily.
To be fair, Lily had more to show concern about in Snape case. He had a bad homelife and seemed poised to get mixed up in the wrong crowd at school. Lily, on the other hand, seemed to come from a fairly happy, stable home with loving parents, and seemed more outgoing and probably had an easier time making friends but we are shown memories of Snape's concern for Lily? Snape's concerns for her safety in regards to Lupin's condition seemed almost overblown to me; she doesn't ever, as far as we or Snape know, accompany Lupin to the Willow passage, Snape seems aware that Lupin is separated from the general populus of the school when he is transformed (his trepedation about Lupins also seems rooted in the werewolf prejudices) and, as far as we know, knows nothing of the marauder's full moon escapades as animals which would have resulted in the close calls Lupin refers to. Snape seems overly concerned for her safety and overly concerned with the interactions she has with the marauders. The makings of obsession? Pehaps.

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IMO, when Severus starts to say, “….You’re not going to — I won’t let you….” he was going to say something like “You’re not going to believe that tripe, are you?” and “I won’t let you be made a fool of…,” or some variation of those statements after being gob smacked by hearing the story of James’ heroic saving of his life, a story no one was suppose let out. But Lily finished his sentence with a negative assumption rather than listening to see what he was going to say.
IMO, shen Severus starts to say, "... you're not going to -- I won't let you..." he was going to say something like, "I won't let you believe James is a good person" or "think anything well of James or his friends."

To be fair, I don't think Snape or Lily are innocent of trying to control the other. To me, Lily tries to control Snape just as Snape tries to control her; the difference between the two seems to be that Snape wants to control how Lily feels about James whereas Lily seems to want to control whether Snape gets mixed up in the dark arts.

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As has been pointed out many times, we really do not know what happened to Mary Macdonald. We don’t know how dangerous, nearly lethal, evil, or Dark it was. We don’t even know for sure that Lily got her information first hand or whether she got it from Mary or someone else who was there. That’s one place it would have been so helpful to have had some more detail from the author.
See Melaszka's reply to this. She says it better than I could.

(And yay! She's monitoring the thread but I haven't gotten in trouble for going OT!! Success!!! )

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As I said, we do not know for certain what happened to Mary, but it obviously didn’t leave her handicapped or scarred as I’m sure Lily would have mentioned that in her diatribe.
I got the impression that the attack on Mary had been very recent (to that conversation) and that Mary might have still been in the hospital wing or recovering or might have been moved to St. Mungos.

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Also, Mary was the one who told Lily that Severus was at the Common Room door after SWM. She seemed OK then.
She seemed OK in the sense that we never see her, Lily makes a comment about something Mary told her, not her physical condition. Just as we don't know how severe the attack on Mary was, neither do we know for certain how "OK" she was afterwards or in what state of recovery she was. The night Snape goes to apologize Mary could have been doing cartwheels around the common room or could have been paralysed and confined to a wheelchair for the rest of her life. Just because Lily doesn't comment on her state (after what I assume is perhaps a month or more of recovery since I doubt Mary's attack and then SWM happened a day apart) means nothing.

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I haven't actually done a calculation so I can't say for sure, but I don’t see that much “filtering” going on as far as Severus feelings about Lily. He loved her from the time he first saw her and he loved her until the day he died. I think that is reflected in the purity of his Patronus, the feeling that Harry got from it in the forest. If it truly was a reflection of his love for Lily by being the same as her’s, it certainly doesn’t seem to indicate anything as negative as obsession.
There is certainly filtering - in his dying moments Snape seemed to cough up those specific memories, not every memory of Lily he ever had. There was certainly filtering in terms of story-telling; JKR could hardly spend 100 pages at the end of her 7-novel series describing all of Snape's memories of Lily to us. There was filtering.

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Not quite sure what that has to do with Severus' actions (i.e. going to sit by the bush, studying over his OWL papers, then starting back toward the castle), but no, “Snape’s Worst Memory” was calling the girl he loved a Mudblood and putting an end to their friendship. I didn’t interpret it to have anything to do with James.
So the first time you read OOTP and saw SWM you knew that it was Snape's interactions with Lily that made that Snape's worst memory? That is what I am refering to when I say that scene was written to be ambiguous. The first time you read it I feel like you're meant to assume it was the humiliaition James inflicts on Snape that makes it his worst memory, then in DH readers are meant to realize it was Snape's interaction with Lily that made it his worst memory.

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I don’t see how that makes it “unhealthy.” Just because Lily was socially more adept and Severus lacked self-esteem and self confidence doesn’t make his love for her “unhealthy.” I don’t think it’s fair to judge that an individual is “obsessed” with someone else or that their love for them is “unhealthy” just because the person they love is more outgoing and self assured.
My impression that their relationship is unhealthy stems from their arguments, that they are trying to control each other, manipulate each other, that they are never on the same page and that seems to create constant or continuous friction between them.

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I would say that lying to someone when you’ve promised them you would not do something, then continue to do it is a controlling action and is making a fool of that person.
What was James supposed to do? Lay down and take it if Snape attacked him? Let Snape hex him into oblivion? I don't think James and Snape's continued animosity during James and Lily's relationship or the fact that James tried to keep those interactions from her was James way of controling Lily or him trying to make a fool of her.

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I don’t’ think he needed Legilimency to tell what James thought of Lily. He was pretty obvious with his flirting and trying to impress her with the story of his heroism in saving Severus’ life, among other things (the sketch of the Snitch with her initials…). So Severus didn't have to be a Legilimens to see James was interested in her.
That's what I said at the end of that paragraph:
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The caveat, though, is that I think Snape would have learned legilimency after he was pretty darn certain about all those things so in terms of those discoveries there wouldn't be anything earth-shattering.
I don't think Snape learned legilimency to use it against James, I think he learned it to figure out a way back into Lily's good graces. He might have practiced on James, though.


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  #558  
Old April 6th, 2012, 5:26 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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See Melaszka's reply to this.
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  #559  
Old April 6th, 2012, 7:41 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by Goddess_Clio View Post
So a 5-year-old who can operate an electric car has an affinity for driving? A toddler who can squeeze play-doh has an affinity for sculpture? A child who can assemble Legos has an affinity for construction? A child who can kick or throw a ball has an affinity for sports? No! These are all learned skills, just like flying. IMO the toy broom Harry was given had the ability to fly on its own, was probably charmed to keep the child on top of it and not let them fall off and was a toy.
But Harry was talented enough during his first flying lesson to impress McGonagall and make Seeker on the Quidditch team. Let's say he had a "latent talent" for flying, if affinity is not the proper description of his ability.

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I said toward the end of my previous post that I think Snape only started learning legilimency and/or occlumency after SWM so that would have been his sixth year at the very earliest because I agree that in his early career at Hogwarts he didn't have great impulse control or control over his emotions. That was a learned skill (just like flying ) but I do feel like he had the foundations laid for such a skill from his homelife.
Yes, I believe it was a skill he started to work on after SWM and that he may have had a "latent talent" for it. As someone previously pointed out, children who come from dysfunctional homes tend to develop ways of burying their emotions. Maybe he was able to tap into that as a Sixth or Seventh Year student.

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It was also the fourth to last chapter of the entire series (not counting the epilogue) and there was a heck of a lot of momentum pushing the story toward its conclusion. To stop the narrative to wax poetic about how Snape tried for five years to get Lily back would have been a waste of that precious time in the story and would have bogged down the pace. It's my opinion that the memories Snape showed to Harry were to serve the purpose of showing 1) that he loved Lily, 2) that their relationship fell apart because of a difference of opinion about the dark arts, 3) that he did tried to apologize to her and 4) that all of those childhood memories were meant to gain Harry's trust and show Harry that Snape's intentions were good. To show repeated apologies over several memories would have served no purpose other than to slow the forthcoming conclusion of Harry's story.
I'm sorry. I feel that the scene at the Common Room door was meant to show that it was the end of Severus and Lily's friendship and contact with each other. That each had chosen their own path and that was the one she was going to travel -- and IMO, she was telling him to travel his and leave her be.

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Must agree to disagree again, I'm afraid.
Fine with me.

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Another agree to disagree moment because I don't feel like those memories were given to Harry out of any kind of desire for atonement. I think they were given to gain Harry's trust and to make a sort of explanation for himself and his actions - not an apology, an explanation; I do think Snape regretted the part he played in Lily's death but I don't think he at all felt like he needed to apologize to Harry for it.
I do. So, like you said, agree to disagree. It all depends on the reader's perception and interpretation.

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I don't think Snape ever had a desire to drop the animosity he felt for Harry - Harry reminded him of James in every single way except in the color and shape of his eyes. Every time Snape looked at Harry he saw James and it's pretty clear from Snape's interactions with Sirius and Lupin that he never ever had a desire to fogive and forget with them, why would he even want to try to forgive and forget with the son of his biggest nemisis, the man who married and impregnated the love of Snape's life, the usurper, the show off?
I think after Severus saw Harry's memories during the Occlumency lessons and realized they shared a lot of the same experiences as children he began to feel differently toward him. Then, Harry went Penseive diving and the old animosity came back for a while. But, I can't believe that someone as courageous and determined as Severus does not recognize the same traits in Harry. IMO, as grudging as it might have been, Severus had begun to care for Harry in his own way and that realization came to him when he learned Harry had been raised "like a pig for slaughter." We see the chink in his armor there, and I believe he used the diversion of the Silver Doe and his love for Lily to stop Dumbledore from pinning him down about it.

Again, we seem to have to agree to disagree.

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I doubt if James or Sirius (or Lupin or Peter) were around Lily Snape would have approached her to attempt an apology. I doubt Lily would ever have turned to James over dinner and said, "Your biggest enemy and boy you've hated since you first laid eyes on him who used to be my best friend tried to apologize to me again today. Please pass the mashed potatoes." Lily knew the animosity that existed between the marauders and Snape and I doubt she was spouting off to either side knowing it could cause of fire storm of fighting to break out between them.
I just don't see Severus putting himself up for more rejection. I think once was enough. Lily made it clear she didn't want to hear anymore and that there was nothing he could do that was going to change her mind. I think he got the message and went his own way.

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You're making the assumption that Sirius knew, though. Why should he have known? Do you think Snape would have waltzed up to Lily right in front of Sirius and James, his two greatest enemies at Hogwarts, and tried to say he was sorry again? Do you think Lily would have told James (and by extention Sirius who James most certainly would have told) about Snape's attempts when it's possible it could have sent James out into the castle to "settle the score" with Snape?
If Severus made any attempt to contact or reconcile with Lily after she and James started dating I'm fairly sure that would get back to James. James and Sirius were practically joined at the hip. If James knew, Sirius knew. Yes, if Severus had approached her I think Lily would have told James. Or, he may have seen them talking and asked her about it. The way gossip spread through Hogwarts like wildfire, I can't believe that after their breakup any attempt he made to contact her would not have been Gryffindor Common Room gossip as soon as possible.

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Lily refering to, say, Mary as a friend to Snape does not mean that Snape is not also Lily's friend. It means, to me, that Mary and Snape are not friends, not that Mary and Snape are not both Lily's friends. You can be friends with two people who are not friends with each other but that does not mean your friendship with either of them separately is any less real. Would you say Harry is not friends with Hermione when Hermione and Ron are fighting? No. He's friends with both of them still, but they (in that moment) might not be friends with each other.
But, she doesn't say my "other friends," she says "my friends." She had, IMO, already shut Severus out of that loop.

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To be fair, Lily had more to show concern about in Snape case. He had a bad homelife and seemed poised to get mixed up in the wrong crowd at school. Lily, on the other hand, seemed to come from a fairly happy, stable home with loving parents, and seemed more outgoing and probably had an easier time making friends but we are shown memories of Snape's concern for Lily? Snape's concerns for her safety in regards to Lupin's condition seemed almost overblown to me; she doesn't ever, as far as we or Snape know, accompany Lupin to the Willow passage, Snape seems aware that Lupin is separated from the general populus of the school when he is transformed (his trepedation about Lupins also seems rooted in the werewolf prejudices) and, as far as we know, knows nothing of the marauder's full moon escapades as animals which would have resulted in the close calls Lupin refers to. Snape seems overly concerned for her safety and overly concerned with the interactions she has with the marauders. The makings of obsession? Pehaps.
Lily shows little concern for Severus feeling during each of the memories we see of them together. While these may only be snippets of their friendship, they evidently show an overview of it. I don't see any concern from Lily that Severus might have gotten maimed or killed by a werewolf, or that he is in danger of his friends having a terribly negative influence on him. Lily's concerns seem to center more around how it is uncomfortable for her to have to try to defend him and how her friends can't understand why she talks to him, not out of any concern for him. His concerns seem to be that he is losing his best friend to someone he feels is sneaky (he knows they are sneaking out of the castle) and seems to have set his sights on winning Lily over. IMO, he does have concerns that there is a werewolf living in Gryffindor Tower, too.

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IMO, shen Severus starts to say, "... you're not going to -- I won't let you..." he was going to say something like, "I won't let you believe James is a good person" or "think anything well of James or his friends."
We're back to perception and interpretation. It seems we have a totally opposite view here. Which is fine. That's the nice thing about books. It's up to the reader to see the characters of a story the way they want to. It doesn't make either one right or wrong as long as they get what they want out of the story.

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To be fair, I don't think Snape or Lily are innocent of trying to control the other. To me, Lily tries to control Snape just as Snape tries to control her; the difference between the two seems to be that Snape wants to control how Lily feels about James whereas Lily seems to want to control whether Snape gets mixed up in the dark arts.
I would use the word "influence" instead of control when it comes to how Lily feels about James. I think Severus wanted to influence her feelings because he was in love with her and knew he'd have no chance if she became attracted to James. So, he tried to show her James wasn't as perfect as many seemed to think he was. That may be a passive way of trying to control someone, but he didn't brainwash her or lie to her....

Lily never seems to give an argument or ask for an explanation as to why Severus is interested in the Dark Arts. It seems to be an embarrassment to her that he is and that seems to be her concern. She doesn't seem to care what their effect on him might be, just that it makes her look bad associating with someone who is so deeply interested in them. I have a feeling if he'd been a Gryff or any other House but Slytherin his interest in the Dark Arts would have been assumed to be part of studying to be a DADA teacher or an Auror. But, since he was from Slytherin House, his motives seem to automatically sinister.

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I got the impression that the attack on Mary had been very recent (to that conversation) and that Mary might have still been in the hospital wing or recovering or might have been moved to St. Mungos.
Lily states that Mulciber "tried" to do something to Mary. I see no indication that he succeeded or that there were any lasting effects, including hospitalization or being sent to St. Mungos for special treatment, such as Katie Bell was in HPB. If the results had been that extreme I think JKR would have had Lily give more details.

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She seemed OK in the sense that we never see her, Lily makes a comment about something Mary told her, not her physical condition. Just as we don't know how severe the attack on Mary was, neither do we know for certain how "OK" she was afterwards or in what state of recovery she was. The night Snape goes to apologize Mary could have been doing cartwheels around the common room or could have been paralysed and confined to a wheelchair for the rest of her life. Just because Lily doesn't comment on her state (after what I assume is perhaps a month or more of recovery since I doubt Mary's attack and then SWM happened a day apart) means nothing.
"I only came out because Mary told me you were threatening to sleep here.” That was what Mary told her. So, she was well enough to be going through the Common Room door and saw Severus there. We don't know what transpired between them, but he indicated he was going to stay there until Lily came out to talk to him, and that included sleeping there. So, I'd say Mary was in fairly good condition.

Again, we really don't know what happened. We are told Mucliber "tried" something. IMO, if it had been crippling, disfiguring, or required extensive treatment or hospitalization Lily would have pointed that out in order to emphasize how terrible the act was. She doesn't. So, I tend to see it as a spell that may or may not have been Dark Magic and that it did not have the effect it was suppose to have.

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There is certainly filtering - in his dying moments Snape seemed to cough up those specific memories, not every memory of Lily he ever had. There was certainly filtering in terms of story-telling; JKR could hardly spend 100 pages at the end of her 7-novel series describing all of Snape's memories of Lily to us. There was filtering.
JKR showed us specific memories for specific reasons. She didn't show us a lot of specifics in many of them, leaving us to draw our own conclusions. But, I don't see this as "filtering." That, to me, would mean she is trying to make us feel one way or another about Severus through his memories, the way she does with Harry's impression of him and in the way she shows his manner of dress, and his treatment of Harry and other students. Those are definitely set up to show him in a negative light. IMO, that is filtering.

I see the memories as unbiased, if incomplete, glimpses of Severus life and then she leaves it up to the readers to put that together based, again, on their perceptions and interpretations.

So the first time you read OOTP and saw SWM you knew that it was Snape's interactions with Lily that made that Snape's worst memory? That is what I am refering to when I say that scene was written to be ambiguous. The first time you read it I feel like you're meant to assume it was the humiliaition James inflicts on Snape that makes it his worst memory, then in DH readers are meant to realize it was Snape's interaction with Lily that made it his worst memory.

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My impression that their relationship is unhealthy stems from their arguments, that they are trying to control each other, manipulate each other, that they are never on the same page and that seems to create constant or continuous friction between them.
That, IMO, does not make him "obsessive" or his feeling "unhealthy." It just means the two of them should probably have dropped their friendship a long time before. I think as soon as Lily was sorted into Gryffindor and Severus into Slytherin it was the beginning of the end for their friendship. But, I see it as based on need in the first place: Severus' need for companionship; Lily's need for an introduction into the Wizarding World. It was just a matter of who wasn't going to need whom anymore, and my opinion is that was Lily.

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What was James supposed to do? Lay down and take it if Snape attacked him? Let Snape hex him into oblivion? I don't think James and Snape's continued animosity during James and Lily's relationship or the fact that James tried to keep those interactions from her was James way of controling Lily or him trying to make a fool of her.
No. He just had to tell Lily that he couldn't keep his promise because he had to defend himself. If that was the truth, he should have told her. Instead he continued to do what he'd promised not to do. He lied, even if it was just by omission. That, IMO, is a form of control because it removed Lily's choice of whether she might not want to continue seeing him if he couldn't keep his promise.

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I don't think Snape learned legilimency to use it against James, I think he learned it to figure out a way back into Lily's good graces. He might have practiced on James, though.
I think he learned it after he and Lily parted so he could stop "wearing his heart on his sleeve" and not be hurt anymore.


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Old April 7th, 2012, 12:03 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I just don't see Severus putting himself up for more rejection. I think once was enough. Lily made it clear she didn't want to hear anymore and that there was nothing he could do that was going to change her mind. I think he got the message and went his own way.
FYI, I'm skipping over the things I know we must agree to disagree on in order to get our posts down to a somewhat more manageable length.

People do crazy things for love, especially to keep from losing love, and I don't think it's out of the realm of possibilities that Snape was so in love with Lily that he would suffer repeated rejection on the chance he might wear her down and she'd take him back. That's not the craziest thing I've ever heard someone do for love, not even the craziest thing I've seen personally.

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If Severus made any attempt to contact or reconcile with Lily after she and James started dating I'm fairly sure that would get back to James. James and Sirius were practically joined at the hip. If James knew, Sirius knew. Yes, if Severus had approached her I think Lily would have told James. Or, he may have seen them talking and asked her about it. The way gossip spread through Hogwarts like wildfire, I can't believe that after their breakup any attempt he made to contact her would not have been Gryffindor Common Room gossip as soon as possible.
Ginny's tryst with Dean Thomas was kept secret from Harry and Ron until they walked in on them kissing - and Ginny is Ron's sister. And Dean is Harry and Ron's roommate!

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But, she doesn't say my "other friends," she says "my friends." She had, IMO, already shut Severus out of that loop.
Omitting "other" doesn't mean she no longer considered Snape her friend. I refer to my "other friends" as simply "friends" to my best friend, but that doesn't mean my best friend isn't my friend because I didn't include the word "other." IMO, the use or omission of the word "other" is not a strong argument for Snape being cut off.

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We're back to perception and interpretation. It seems we have a totally opposite view here. Which is fine. That's the nice thing about books. It's up to the reader to see the characters of a story the way they want to. It doesn't make either one right or wrong as long as they get what they want out of the story.
And why we can sit here and have circular arguments about characters.

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Lily never seems to give an argument or ask for an explanation as to why Severus is interested in the Dark Arts. It seems to be an embarrassment to her that he is and that seems to be her concern. She doesn't seem to care what their effect on him might be, just that it makes her look bad associating with someone who is so deeply interested in them. I have a feeling if he'd been a Gryff or any other House but Slytherin his interest in the Dark Arts would have been assumed to be part of studying to be a DADA teacher or an Auror. But, since he was from Slytherin House, his motives seem to automatically sinister.
Hey, JKR set that prejudice up by not giving us any "good" Slytherin students to point to in these arguments. Nothing we can do about that.

Lily states that Mulciber "tried" to do something to Mary. I see no indication that he succeeded or that there were any lasting effects, including hospitalization or being sent to St. Mungos for special treatment, such as Katie Bell was in HPB. If the results had been that extreme I think JKR would have had Lily give more details.

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JKR showed us specific memories for specific reasons. She didn't show us a lot of specifics in many of them, leaving us to draw our own conclusions. But, I don't see this as "filtering." That, to me, would mean she is trying to make us feel one way or another about Severus through his memories, the way she does with Harry's impression of him and in the way she shows his manner of dress, and his treatment of Harry and other students. Those are definitely set up to show him in a negative light. IMO, that is filtering.
IMO showing us specific memories for specific reasons is filtering, and any conclusions we draw from what she chose to show readers is our interpretation of what she has filtered. I'd also argue that she is trying to make readers feel a certain way about Snape - she's wanting readers to see that he was a good guy, his intentions where Harry was concerned were good if not misguided at times. Readers are meant to sympathize with him as a man suffering from the unrequited love of a woman he lost through his own actions and choices. That's steering a reader towards feel something she wants them to feel just like we are supposed to feel sympathy with Harry as the hero of the story, we're meant to loathe Voldemort and Bellatrix. Whether you, as the reader, feel what she is wanting you to feel is up to your interpretation of the text and your impression of the character from the previous 6 books.

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I see the memories as unbiased, if incomplete, glimpses of Severus life and then she leaves it up to the readers to put that together based, again, on their perceptions and interpretations.
I'd say she showed us what she thought were the best memories to make us feel what she as the author wanted us to feel with regards to Snape's character and Harry's journey.

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That, IMO, does not make him "obsessive" or his feeling "unhealthy."
I'm not saying his feelings for Lily are unhealthy, I'm saying their relationship is unhealthy and that both of them contributed to that unhealthiness, not just Snape.


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