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Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8



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  #461  
Old May 26th, 2008, 4:28 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by zgirnius View Post
I guess the only example we really have (other than negative facts such as Snape never eating at 12 GP), is in the "Occlumency" chapter. I wonder is that is something he told Voldemort, though. Teaching Harry Occlumency successfully would have foiled Voldemort's grand plan for the year, so I tend to think he did not share that memory.
I was actually referring to Order meeting, had been discussing Snape’s tendency to be ‘abrasive’ if anyone in the Order tried to be friendly, and this attitude seemed to carry over to most of his contact with Order members. I was simply suggesting that focusing on his dislike at such moments might make it easier if Voldermort wanted to ‘see’ what happened in any such meetings.

I was however being a little unclear


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  #462  
Old May 26th, 2008, 4:45 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

kittling and zgirnius, thank you for your replies! Everything makes sense now.

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Zgrinius has shown this wonderfully in some of her fiction (I can’t remember which one in particular, but I’m sure she’ll tell you if you ask nicely well worth a read btw)
I'll just read all of them.


  #463  
Old May 26th, 2008, 4:48 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
So, given that Harry was an inexperienced wizard and not particularly gifted at Occlumency, why on earth was Snape afraid of Harry breaking into his mind if even Voldemort himself wasn’t able to do it?
Snape says in Spinner's End that he considers Harry "mediocre", but he'd still have to be a fool not to notice that Harry is full of surprises. Remember the Parseltongue at the Duelling Club?
I think Snape hid the memories because there was a chance that Harry could surprise him again. He does, after all, mention Harry's skill at fighting the Imperius Curse and says that similar powers are needed for that. So it's not impossible for Harry to end up being a talented Legilimens.

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Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
And why did Snape even need to use Occlumency in his encounters with Voldemort in the first place when all he needed to do was unload all the memories that could compromise him into the Pensieve?
Well, if Snape can access his own memories, I'm going to guess a Legilimens could. And if Snape couldn't remember all that important information, he could easily make a mistake.


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  #464  
Old May 26th, 2008, 4:57 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

ignisia
Thanks for your reply.
Yes, I agree that Snape did not underestimate Harry. Considering that Voldemort gave Harry the ability to speak with snakes, it was very possible that he also might have shared some other talents with the boy, including Legilimency.

Quote:
And if Snape couldn't remember all that important information, he could easily make a mistake.
If a wizard removes his/her memories and places them into the Pensieve, does he/she completely forgets what was happening in those memories? I don't remember if this was mentioned in the books.



Last edited by Raelis; May 26th, 2008 at 5:03 pm.
  #465  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:15 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by kittling View Post
First off Draco was a beginner, which mean’s he probably didn’t have much finesse in the way he used it (Bella being his teacher also doesn’t raise my hopes of him learning any finesse ). In Snape’s case we know he is highly skilled and subtle. Secondly I read it to mean that Snape shows him something that satisfies Voldermort’s curiosity. Zgrinius has shown this wonderfully in some of her fiction (I can’t remember which one in particular, but I’m sure she’ll tell you if you ask nicely well worth a read btw), here you see something like this with Snape focusing on particular thoughts or emotions to produce a ‘misleading picture’ in his head for Voldermort to read. The question you asked also points to why the pensive would have to be used in moderation, if at all, as obvious gaps would be suspicious.
I respect your viewpoint, however, I believe Bella's talent is being underestimated. She proved herself in canon to be a phenomenal magician; while Snape was still in metaphorical magical short pants, she took on two excellent magicians at once, leaving them worse than dead. She was successful at the MOM against her trained and highly skilled opponents and imo, fought with the extra advantage of truly wishing with all of her soul to vanquish and kill. Her greatest flaw was her arrogant recklessness, but that generally occurred in battle.

Imo, Snape had a great amount of respect for Bella's skill which imo, was greater than his own ability - a good part of that was her true desire to destroy where Snape's was feigned as a spy. In order to defeat Aurors and their ilk, she would have to have well established Occulmency skills and the fact that Draco knew what Snape was doing (a subtle legilimens spell) speaks highly of the training that Bella was able to provide Draco with.

Canon does not provide us with information about Snape's ability as a warrior, nor do we have even one example of him engaging another in a serious duel. Thus, the logical conclusion, imo, is that those who were actually dueling, frequently and ferociously, like Bella, would be more skilled than Snape.

Snape was unable to guard against Harry's intrusion of his mind because he was dealing with Harry Potter. Snape believed beforehand that Harry might accidentally see a snippet of memory here and there during their practice session and I agree with Zara that it is likely a normal part of the teaching process that such can occur (hence he removed his worse memories).

However, imo, Snape did not realize that Harry would be able to so cleanly and thoroughly invade his mind the way that he did when he saw Snape's embarassing and guarded memories of his youth. Snape, imo, believed he would be able to stop any such accidental intrusion immediately, but he could not. This can be explained in a number of ways, imo.

First, I agree with Ignisia, Harry did have a soul piece of Voldemort inside and he did receive talent from that, especially in the legilimens/occulmens aspect of magic (as we saw by their mind connection and Harry's ultimate control of it in DH).

Second, Harry was also gifted with his innate ability that we know little about except that it is associated with love and being studied in the department of mysteries. This ability allowed Harry to do all types of things as a young wizard that others could not achieve and that no one, I daresay even Volemort and Dumbledore could defend against - let alone Snape.

Snape believed that Harry had little magical talent, despite evidence to the contrary. He declared Harry was lucky and had the help of his more talented friends. Snape didn't say this only to Bella - but to Dumbledore also, in private, and to Harry himself, both in public and private. However, we saw in canon that it was Harry who found his father within himself and drove away the dementors; who found Sirius within himself and ejected Voldemort from possessing his body; who found power within himself to create a shield charm to send Snape reeling backward and smashing into a desk and who found power to invade Snape's mind to such a devastating degree, despite having absolutely no training as a legilimens. It was this same power that caused his wand to defend him seemingly of its own will against Voldemort in 7 Potters, when he tried to use Lucius' wand to curse Harry.

I believe subconsciously, Snape understood Harry had this secret power which gave him great ability; he merely refused to acknowledge it with his conscious mind. Their final encounter in HBP, Flight of the Prince, found Snape disarming Harry prior to attacking him and imo, that may have been a subconscious move because deep down he knew if Harry retained his wand, that secret power would be unleashed upon him as it had been upon Voldemort, the dementors and even himself in the past.


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  #466  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:18 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
If a wizard removes his/her memories and places them into the Pensieve, does he/she completely forgets what was happening in those memories? I don't remember if this was mentioned in the books.
I think that they can still remember the memories. I think te point of putting them in the Pensieve is to let them view the memories more clearly and from an outsiders point of view (instead of your own). Remember, Dumbledore discussed the memories that Harry was viewing in the Pensieve with him afterwards, so he must have still had some recollection of them. I'm actually not sure why Snape put SWM into the Pensieve. He was there, and there doesn't seem to be much deeper meaning to it besides the obvious rivalry with the Marauders.


  #467  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:21 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
If a wizard removes his/her memories and places them into the Pensieve, does he/she completely forgets what was happening in those memories? I don't remember if this was mentioned in the books.
No, it's not mentioned, and it's been brought up several times as a point of confusion. I myself have no opinion on the matter.

I'm interested, though. If you don't think that a wizard completely forgets the memories, what do you think takes place when someone puts a memory in a Pensieve?


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  #468  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:24 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by ignisia View Post
I'm interested, though. If you don't think that a wizard completely forgets the memories, what do you think takes place when someone puts a memory in a Pensieve?
Maybe a copy or the memory is created? We don't know all about the exact way that magic like this works, so I don't think I could put my finger on exactly how it's done, but what happens is I think a copy is created.


  #469  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:34 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

DeathlyH
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I think that they can still remember the memories. I think te point of putting them in the Pensieve is to let them view the memories more clearly and from an outsiders point of view (instead of your own).
Yes, that makes sense, thanks.

Didn't Snape put only three of his memories in the Pensieve? One of them was SWM, but what were the other two, I wonder? What did he want to hide from Harry so much?


  #470  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:37 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
Didn't Snape put only three of his memories in the Pensieve? One of them was SWM, but what were the other two, I wonder? What did he want to hide from Harry so much?
I wondered that as well. There were so many memories which were important to Snape about the past, most of which appeared in The Prince's Tale, so I don't think it would be possible to determine which ones specifically. But I'm guessing we saw those memories in DH. They were probably two about Lily or Dumbledore, that he didn't want Harry to see if he reversed the charm.


  #471  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:44 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Many of the memories in DH had not yet occurred. So I would speculate that Snape removed memory where he first arrived to speak to Dumbledore and that following Lily's death because those spoke of his big secret which he would not wish Harry to know. I wouldn't be surprised if that whole time period had been removed as one big chunk and the 3rd memory removed was memory #5 because it revealed things about Harry's father and mother that Snape did not wish to admit to, imo.


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  #472  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:50 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

wickedwickedboy
Quote:
Canon does not provide us with information about Snape's ability as a warrior, nor do we have even one example of him engaging another in a serious duel.
I think the duel between him, MacGonagall and Flitwick was quite serious, though, if a bit short. Flitwick was rumored to be a duel champion, I think Hermione mentions that in the second book. Considering this and the fact that Snape was one against two extremely capable and experienced wizards, I think he handled himself perfect.
As to who was more talented - Bella or Severus - unfortunately, canon does not tell us too much about Bella's abilities. It is possible that she was a better duelist. But who knows?
It is obvious, however, that Snape is a very gifted wizard, and his skill of Occlumency is so high that he is able to resist the best Legilimens that ever lived.

ignisia
Quote:
I'm interested, though. If you don't think that a wizard completely forgets the memories, what do you think takes place when someone puts a memory in a Pensieve?
That's a difficult question because I actually never thought about it! I like DeathlyH's version, though.



Last edited by Raelis; May 26th, 2008 at 5:57 pm.
  #473  
Old May 26th, 2008, 5:56 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by wickedwickedboy View Post
I respect your viewpoint, however, I believe Bella's talent is being underestimated. She proved herself in canon to be a phenomenal magician;
Indeed she was, and I would stress that at no point have said anything to imply she was not very gifted. I did imply that she lacked finesse, which to my mind links with subtlety, artifice and delicacy. I would not associate these with her in any way, she is imo much more straight forward, both in her allegiances and her disposition.

Quote:
In order to defeat Aurors and their ilk, she would have to have well established Occulmency skills and the fact that Draco knew what Snape was doing (a subtle legilimens spell) speaks highly of the training that Bella was able to provide Draco with.
This is purely supposition, there is nothing in cannon to back it up, and it may have been that she was relying primarily on her combatitive abilities to avoid capture (although this too is supposition). The fact that Draco is able to spot Snape’s attempt at using legilimens tells us little about Bella’s abilities in this area over & above the fact that she had sufficient knowledge to teach him to block such an attempt. It could also be that Snape is not trying to be subtle, or simply that Bella has warned Draco to expect him to make an attempt; which we could well suspect from the manner in which Draco has been avoiding Snape all year.

Quote:
Thus, the logical conclusion, imo, is that those who were actually dueling, frequently and ferociously, like Bella, would be more skilled than Snape.
In combat they would certainly be more likely to have the greater skill, but I repeat I was talking about Occulmency, which is not about combat. It was something Snape both practiced and used regularly so on the same logic he is the one who is likely to very skilled in this area.

Quote:
Second, Harry was also gifted with his innate ability that we know little about except that it is associated with love and being studied in the department of mysteries. This ability allowed Harry to do all types of things as a young wizard that others could not achieve and that no one, I daresay even Volemort and Dumbledore could defend against - let alone Snape.
I thought the power he had that the dark lord knew not of was love. Just plain simple love. That s not to imply that love is nothing, or that it is not incredibly important; just that I wasn’t aware of it being anything else in addition to love.


  #474  
Old May 26th, 2008, 6:00 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

I agree with Raelis and would like to add that the duel between McGonagall and Snape had some pretty advanced magic.

In the battle at the DoM between the Order members and the DEs, we see jets of light flying about, but it's only when we get to the battle between Dumbledore and Voldemort that we see some real dueling, involving advanced Transfiguration and manipulation of the elements.

The battle between McG and Snape is similar. It's not just jets of light, but enormous snakes, lassos of fire, and various other things. It tells us that both combatants are highly skilled. And Snape managed to hold his own for quite a while against McGonagall. We can therefore conclude that Snape is an excellent duelist.


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  #475  
Old May 26th, 2008, 6:01 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
Didn't Snape put only three of his memories in the Pensieve? One of them was SWM, but what were the other two, I wonder? What did he want to hide from Harry so much?
I'm not sure if we actually know the exact number - I thought Harry walked in to find him putting memories in the pensive, which means he could have removed any number of memories. However I am not entierly certain on this


  #476  
Old May 26th, 2008, 6:22 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by kittling View Post
The fact that Draco is able to spot Snape’s attempt at using legilimens tells us little about Bella’s abilities in this area over & above the fact that she had sufficient knowledge to teach him to block such an attempt. It could also be that Snape is not trying to be subtle, or simply that Bella has warned Draco to expect him to make an attempt; which we could well suspect from the manner in which Draco has been avoiding Snape all year.
Actually, by Draco's response "I know what you are trying to do", it is evident that Snape was being subtle in his legilimens attempt - that together with the fact that Harry didn't hear Snape cry out Legilimens! . But Draco could tell anyway and Snape compliemented Bella indirectly by remarking that she'd been teaching Draco. I didn't say this reflected upon Bella's own occulmency skills (which may or may not have equalled or bettered Snape's), but that it showed she had a handle on the magic that was good enough to teach Draco to use it proficiently. JKR said Draco was better able to do it than Harry due to his mindset in general, but he still had to be instructed in it by someone who could do so effectively. And Snape knew exactly who it had been - another telling factor, imo.

Quote:
I thought the power he had that the dark lord knew not of was love. Just plain simple love. That s not to imply that love is nothing, or that it is not incredibly important; just that I wasn’t aware of it being anything else in addition to love.
No it was more than that, Dumbledore takes us on a merry ride during one of his prolonged, pedantic speeches and he described this . Dumbledore tells Harry that he has a substance inside in greater amounts than any other wizard. It is based in love and being studied at the MOM. Not much is known about it, but it plays into Harry's overall power as a wizard.

I really thought JKR was going to go with that, but she didn't have anyone figure out the mysteries of the substance during the course of the series. In any case, Snape may or may not have known about the substance in relation to Harry; it is doubtful he did or he would have understood the reason for some of Harry's great feats of magic. This, was Harry's greatest weapon against Voldemort, just as Voldemort suggested - based in love. I don't believe Snape or anyone else was aware of this except Harry and Dumbledore though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ignisia View Post
The battle between McG and Snape is similar. It's not just jets of light, but enormous snakes, lassos of fire, and various other things. It tells us that both combatants are highly skilled. And Snape managed to hold his own for quite a while against McGonagall. We can therefore conclude that Snape is an excellent duelist.
I respect your view, however, imo, Snape wasn't dueling at all; he was attempting not to duel. His one spell was easily disregarded by Mcgonagall, reformed and sent back toward Snape in an attack. After that, Snape was all shields and hiding behind statues. Snape was on her side, he simpy could not let that be known, so imo, he was not sincerely attempting to enage her in battle. Thus, I would still conclude that we were unable to get a sense of what Snape would do in an actual duel or what level of ability he might have. Imo, one cannot fairly assess Snape's ability based on his ability to defend when he is not attempting to seriously attack at the same time. That takes a combination of skills that Snape never exhibited in canon because he never engaged in a serious battle on page.


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Last edited by wickedwickedboy; May 26th, 2008 at 6:47 pm.
  #477  
Old May 26th, 2008, 7:31 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raelis View Post
Didn't Snape put only three of his memories in the Pensieve? One of them was SWM, but what were the other two, I wonder? What did he want to hide from Harry so much?
I would bet the other two were shown Harry (and us) in "The Prince's Tale". Probably the first and second scenes with Dumbledore: the meeting on the hill in which Snape and Abus make their bargain, and the scene after Snape learns of Lily's death.

This would be consistent with Snape's request that Albus never tell the truth about him.


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  #478  
Old May 26th, 2008, 11:46 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by WWB
She proved herself in canon to be a phenomenal magician; while Snape was still in metaphorical magical short pants, she took on two excellent magicians at once, leaving them worse than dead.
But she did not do this alone - she had three accomplices - her husband her brother-in-law and Barty Crouch Jr. They outnumbered the Longbottoms 2 to 1. As such I do not think that she showed any exceptional skill. She was undoubtedly a good or even great dueller, but I do not think that canon shows her to be more powerful than Snape. I personally take the fact that SNape was the only Death Eater to fly as Voldemort did to be an indication of his power and ability as a wizard, which was second only to Voldemort's.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WWB
I believe subconsciously, Snape understood Harry had this secret power which gave him great ability; he merely refused to acknowledge it with his conscious mind. Their final encounter in HBP, Flight of the Prince, found Snape disarming Harry prior to attacking him and imo, that may have been a subconscious move because deep down he knew if Harry retained his wand, that secret power would be unleashed upon him as it had been upon Voldemort, the dementors and even himself in the past.
We are told quite plainly that Harry's "s[ecial power" is his ability to love. He is undoubtedly a talented wizard but in a straight fight he would be no match for Snape, Bella or Voldemort. The reason Harry's wand was so powerful and was so ONLY against Voldemort was explained by Dumbledore in King's Cross - Harry's wand absorbed some of Voldemort's magic during the Priori Incantatem effect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raelis
I think the duel between him, MacGonagall and Flitwick was quite serious, though, if a bit short. Flitwick was rumored to be a duel champion, I think Hermione mentions that in the second book. Considering this and the fact that Snape was one against two extremely capable and experienced wizards, I think he handled himself perfect.
Yes I agree - and I would add that while MCgonagall and Flitwick were both tryoing to harm Snape, his response was purely defensive. He did not want to harm them as they were actually on the same side, so he not only defended himself he had to do so with restraint.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WWB
No it was more than that, Dumbledore takes us on a merry ride during one of his prolonged, pedantic speeches and he described this . Dumbledore tells Harry that he has a substance inside in greater amounts than any other wizard. It is based in love and being studied at the MOM. Not much is known about it, but it plays into Harry's overall power as a wizard.
It was love - and only love. I thought that had been made quite clear. That was what was contained in the room and was being studied at the MOM.


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  #479  
Old May 27th, 2008, 12:52 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

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Originally Posted by CathyWeasley View Post
We are told quite plainly that Harry's "s[ecial power" is his ability to love. He is undoubtedly a talented wizard but in a straight fight he would be no match for Snape, Bella or Voldemort. The reason Harry's wand was so powerful and was so ONLY against Voldemort was explained by Dumbledore in King's Cross - Harry's wand absorbed some of Voldemort's magic during the Priori Incantatem effect.
I agree in part. It was not just his ability to love (which everyone has sans Voldemort) - it was a "Force". Harry had it in such great quantities, without even thinking about doing it, he could eject Voldemort from his body and it also took Harry to the MOM to save Sirius. I think JKR didn't emphasize it more because it was sounding awfully like the "Force" from Star Wars. There was a bit of discussion on that very topic after the publication of the book. But it is part of the canon.

In DH, Dumbledore said the wand grabbed some of Voldy's power, but also Harry's courage - which is directly related to and propelled by his "Force" - or love if you'd rather call it that.

Quote:
It was love - and only love. I thought that had been made quite clear. That was what was contained in the room and was being studied at the MOM.
I respect your view, but based on what Dumbledore said, they were studying a force, not just the emotion love on a analytical basis.

“There is a room in the Department of Mysteries that is kept locked at all times. It contains a force that is at once more wonderful and more terrible than death, than human intelligence, than the forces of nature. It is also, perhaps, the most mysterious of the many subjects for study that reside there..." (OP)

Nonetheless, I would agree that we could call it "love" for lack of a better term. Harry had great quantities of it and it acted to give him courage and ability he would not have otherwise possessed, according to Dumbledore.

"It is the power held within that room that you possess in such quantities and which Voldemort has not at all. That power took you to save Sirius tonight. That power also saved you from possession by Voldemort, because he could not bear to reside in as body so full of the force he detests." (OP)

Since everyone in the book except Voldemort was said to be redeemable and carry at least a minimal amout of love - logically everyone would have this force, just not in the quantities of Harry. Quirrell for instance was possessed by Voldemort. And Ginny too, no? Anyway, this Force showed itself in Harry again and again in his greatest times of need, in the form of courage and ability as Dumbledore indicated above.

Snape, imo, would have been at least peripherally aware of the things that had happened to Harry. However, I do not know if he understood that Harry had this grand "Force" within him. If Snape tried to kill him, he would have had to deal with it and imo, he could not have, just as Voldemort, a far greater wizard, could not.


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Old May 27th, 2008, 1:18 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v.8

Here is the complete quote:
OotP: The lost Prophecy"Ther is a room in the Departtment of Mysteries," interupted Dumbledore, "that is kept locked at all times. It contains a force that is at once more wonderful and more terrible thatn death, than human intelligence, than the fforces of nature. It is also, perhaps, the most mysterious of the many subjects ffor study that reside there. It is the power held within that room that you possess in such quantities and which Voldemort has not at all. That power took you to save Sirius tonight. That power also saved ytou from possesion by Voldemort, because he could not bear to reside in a body so full of the force he detests. In the end, it mattered not that you could not close your mind. It was your heart that saved you."

Dumbledore is spelling it out - the power that Harry has that Voldemort hasn't is love. The intense grief he felt at Sirius's death was because he loved Sirius so much and it was this grief - this love that made it unbearable for Voldemort to possess him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kittling
I thought the power he had that the dark lord knew not of was love. Just plain simple love. That s not to imply that love is nothing, or that it is not incredibly important; just that I wasn’t aware of it being anything else in addition to love.
Exactly! I can't remember where exactly but there was some point when Harry though" So I can love. Big Deal!"

So the way I see it Harry had no special magic powers - what set him apart was his ability to love - as demonstrated by his willingness to sacrifice himself in the forest, and his ability to forgive Snape and name his second son after him. That is why the name Albus Severus is to me anyway, so important, - becasue it is another demonstration of Harry's ability to love - and not just his friends and those who are nice to him.

If we contrast this with Snape who was able to love but not as fully as Harry we see a man who loves, but in a way resents the vulnerability that comes with love. And again if we contrast Harry with Voldemort we see a man who does not want to love at all; who sees love as weak and foolish, and fails to recognise the power of love and is ignorant of how love can influence magic as it did with Lily's sacrifice and later with Hary's sacrifice.


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