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The Wizard and the Hopping Pot



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  #1  
Old December 4th, 2008, 10:24 pm
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The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I thought it would be beneficial to have separate threads for each of the tales, so as one or two threads do not get cluttered with varying discussion.

This is the first tale in the book, in which an old, friendly wizard assists his non-magical neighbors with their problems by claiming his cooking pot was responsible. The old man dies and leaves his possessions to his greedy son, who refuses to help his Muggle neighbors. With the first refusal, the cooking pot sprouts a foot, and with each neighbor whom he refuses to help, the cooking pot mimics that individual's inflictions. The pot follows the wizard around until he cannot take it anymore and agrees to help all his unlucky neighbors. He then puts a sock on the pot's leg, but from then on helps his community, lest the pot cast the slipper off.

As Dumbledore says, this tale is a very pro-Muggle one, and ignited much competition. Discuss as you will the new information on Nearly Headless Nick, the Malfoy ancestry, the Muggle/wizard relations, or anything else that caught your eye.


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  #2  
Old December 5th, 2008, 3:12 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I thought it interesting about the tidbit entered about Nick's death. I'm curious to know why he was locked in the dungeon, and it mentions about young wizards being unable to control their magic, so was that the reason for him being "stripped of his wand"?


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Old December 5th, 2008, 3:51 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I found the information about the international stature of secrecy interesting. Maybe it was the way I read it but I took it not as witches and wizards protecting themselves so much as not wanting to help muggles (which is actually something Hagrid mentions in PS/SS)


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Old December 5th, 2008, 11:31 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I think that it was just to more of put in some tidbits about the book we may have wondered about, but an answer is only leading to more questions . I thought it was a pretty cute story


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Old December 6th, 2008, 12:11 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

Quote:
Originally Posted by xhanax315 View Post
I thought it interesting about the tidbit entered about Nick's death. I'm curious to know why he was locked in the dungeon, and it mentions about young wizards being unable to control their magic, so was that the reason for him being "stripped of his wand"?
I think the people that were to execute him were smart enough to take his wand away. Just that. Maybe on purpose, maybe just a lucky move, but it left him wandless.

I think this story was really cute, as well. I'm all for the pro-muggle sentiment.

I have heard debates on why the father left his son the note: "In the fond hope, my son, that you would never need it".

Some have been speculating whether the father the father:

1) enchanted the pot itself, knowing the ways of his son, or

2) went through the 'hopping pot' experience himself?

I go for the 1st one because the father seems like a genuinely good person, willing to help because it was in his hands to do it. Then again, he could have turn into that person, just like his son did.


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Old December 6th, 2008, 3:56 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

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Originally Posted by GinnyIsGenius View Post
I think the people that were to execute him were smart enough to take his wand away. Just that. Maybe on purpose, maybe just a lucky move, but it left him wandless.

I think this story was really cute, as well. I'm all for the pro-muggle sentiment.

I have heard debates on why the father left his son the note: "In the fond hope, my son, that you would never need it".

Some have been speculating whether the father the father:

1) enchanted the pot itself, knowing the ways of his son, or

2) went through the 'hopping pot' experience himself?

I go for the 1st one because the father seems like a genuinely good person, willing to help because it was in his hands to do it. Then again, he could have turn into that person, just like his son did.
I think it was the first. Prhaps he used the pot for making his potions and before his death, enchanted it. I would like to believe he had done it so that his son would've seen the "error of his ways" and changed them, as he eventually did.


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Old December 6th, 2008, 4:35 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I can't quite decide.I understand that the father might have jinxed the pot to do what it did to his son, but that he was also perhaps holding out hope that his son would simply follow the example of his father by default and grow up following the old man's death- hence his hope that the son would never need the slipper.

But otherwise I would go with a different option- that the father too had to learn his lesson from the pot. The other side of it is that the pot itself otherwise served no magical purpose, being unimportant in the magic used by the father in the course of his life. So perhaps it was the pot that taught the father how to be a good wizard. Perhaps that alone was it's function?


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Old December 6th, 2008, 4:35 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

i'd think the first one. The father seems like a generally very good person who would want his son to be the same.

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Originally Posted by vampiricduck View Post
I can't quite decide.I understand that the father might have jinxed the pot to do what it did to his son, but that he was also perhaps holding out hope that his son would simply follow the example of his father by default and grow up following the old man's death- hence his hope that the son would never need the slipper.

But otherwise I would go with a different option- that the father too had to learn his lesson from the pot. The other side of it is that the pot itself otherwise served no magical purpose, being unimportant in the magic used by the father in the course of his life. So perhaps it was the pot that taught the father how to be a good wizard. Perhaps that alone was it's function?
That was probably part of the reason, maybe it's a tradition for their family


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Old December 6th, 2008, 7:30 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I'd actually vote that the father deliberately enchanted the pot to teach his son. Remember what the lady said? "your father bade me come if troubled..."

That, to me anyway, says that he set his son up for the lesson to come. Another thing, the cauldron initially has no foot, and after the experience it retains it's foot now covered in it's muffling slipper.

All in all, it appears a deliberate thing to have done.


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Old December 6th, 2008, 6:09 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

^
Nice catch about the foot!
I was thinking? Won't muggle people feel now that it's slightly odd that a pot has a foot?


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Old December 6th, 2008, 7:07 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

Quote:
Originally Posted by xhanax315
I thought it interesting about the tidbit entered about Nick's death. I'm curious to know why he was locked in the dungeon, and it mentions about young wizards being unable to control their magic, so was that the reason for him being "stripped of his wand"?
JKR also supplied this tidbit about Sir Nicholas, though it was never included in the book. He was originally meant to say it at his Deathday Party:
jkrowling.com, Extra StuffNearly Headless Nick

In the first draft of 'Chamber of Secrets', Nick sang a self-penned ballad explaining how his head had (nearly) come off. My editor was not very fond of the song and so I cut it. However, for those who are curious, here is the story of Nick's decapitation in his own moving words.

It was a mistake any wizard could make
Who was tired and caught on the hop
One piffling error, and then, to my terror,
I found myself facing the chop.
Alas for the eve when I met Lady Grieve
A-strolling the park in the dusk!
She was of the belief I could straighten her teeth
Next moment she'd sprouted a tusk.
I cried through the night that I'd soon put her right
But the process of justice was lax;
They'd brought out the block, though they'd mislaid the rock
Where they usually sharpened the axe.
Next morning at dawn, with a face most forlorn,
The priest said to try not to cry,
"You can come just like that, no, you won't need a hat,"
And I knew that my end must be nigh.
The man in the mask who would have the sad task
Of cleaving my head from my neck,
Said "Nick, if you please, will you get to your knees,"
And I turned to a gibbering wreck.
"This may sting a bit" said the cack-handed twit
As he swung the axe up in the air,
But oh the blunt blade! No difference it made,
My head was still definitely there.
The axeman he hacked and he whacked and he thwacked,
"Won't be too long", he assured me,
But quick it was not, and the bone-headed clot
Took forty-five goes 'til he floored me.
And so I was dead, but my faithful old head
It never saw fit to desert me,
It still lingers on, that's the end of my song,
And now, please applaud, or you'll hurt me.

It appears Nick was caught using magic (perhaps on a Muggle) and was then locked in the dungeon and stripped of his wand.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GinnyIsGenius
I have heard debates on why the father left his son the note: "In the fond hope, my son, that you would never need it".

Some have been speculating whether the father the father:

1) enchanted the pot itself, knowing the ways of his son, or

2) went through the 'hopping pot' experience himself?
I agree with the majority that the father enchanted the pot himself. As the narrator says,
Beedle the Bard, The Wizard and the Hopping Pot, Page 1There was once a kindly old wizard who used his magic generously and wisely for the benefit of his neighbors. Rather than reveal the true source of his power, he pretended that the his potions, charms, and antidotes sprang read-made from the little cauldron he called his lucky cooking pot.

To me, this is the clearest evidence that the father enchanted the pot. He understood his son was less generous, and thus, as I conclude, used the pot as a way to change his son's outlook. Also, it appears as if the cooking pot maintains the foot, even after the son helps his neighbors. Since the pot did not have a foot while it was under the father's possession, I find it unlikely he went through the same experience as his son.


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  #12  
Old December 7th, 2008, 7:18 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucybird View Post
I found the information about the international stature of secrecy interesting. Maybe it was the way I read it but I took it not as witches and wizards protecting themselves so much as not wanting to help muggles (which is actually something Hagrid mentions in PS/SS)
Right. I also think both wizards, the father and the son, actually am not proven to have helped the muggles by own intention. Although they probably got used to their duties in a positive emotional way just as well, I'm not sure yet if they're actually proven to have good intentions right from the beginning. They might just wanted to get rid of that pot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSleepyHead View Post
I thought it would be beneficial to have separate threads for each of the tales, so as one or two threads do not get cluttered with varying discussion.
Complete side note: you did a great job with these threads btw.

Quote:
This is the first tale in the book, in which an old, friendly wizard assists his non-magical neighbors with their problems by claiming his cooking pot was responsible.
I love this part - because, in addition to what I said above, actually the pot is responsible I think. It wasn't the wizard's intention to help muggles at all first.


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Old December 7th, 2008, 9:05 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I have the idea that the father and the cauldron learned from each other, like in a wand/wizard relation. And in the end the son managed to win the pot's allegiance or at least his acceptance.
Anyone agree?



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Old December 7th, 2008, 9:14 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

Yup, actually that makes sense to me. I was probably just not convinced by the fast conclusion Dumbledore made by explaining the tale. I'm just realizing how much more we also learned about wandlore from that book. Neat.


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Old December 11th, 2008, 9:49 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I don't know--we have absolutely no precedent for a semi-sentient cauldron, unlike wands which were stated from PS/SS to have some ability to sense an appropriate wizard. I'm more inclined to think that the cauldron had a charm put on it that would recognize and respond to people in need.


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Old December 25th, 2008, 12:12 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kat_Suki View Post
I'd actually vote that the father deliberately enchanted the pot to teach his son. Remember what the lady said? "your father bade me come if troubled..."

That, to me anyway, says that he set his son up for the lesson to come. Another thing, the cauldron initially has no foot, and after the experience it retains it's foot now covered in it's muffling slipper.

All in all, it appears a deliberate thing to have done.
I thought that the dad suspected that his son might not want to help the Muggles in the way that he did, so he enchanted the pot to teach his son a lesson. I prefer the idea that the wizard created the pot to help the muggles himself, not that he used to dislike muggles too and was taught a lesson by the pot as well. Anyway, I thought it was cutest story in the book! A bit lacking in depth, but hey these are for kids.


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Old December 25th, 2008, 6:32 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

I read this tale to my four-year-old brother yesterday when I put him to bed (and yes, I bought the whole book to him for Christmas, else I would never have it in Norwegian), and he said it was "fantastic"! Though it is not the best thing I ever read (might be because of the horrible translation (sorry, mr. Translator Høverstad, but I must be honest)), I do agree with him and look forward to reading the next tale to him to night. Seems like I am his Personal Fairy Tale Reader now! I don't mind, he's so cute!


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Old December 26th, 2008, 6:17 pm
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

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Originally Posted by gertiekeddle View Post
Right. I also think both wizards, the father and the son, actually am not proven to have helped the muggles by own intention. Although they probably got used to their duties in a positive emotional way just as well, I'm not sure yet if they're actually proven to have good intentions right from the beginning. They might just wanted to get rid of that pot.
Bold mine. And that's exactly what bothers me a bit about this story, to be honest. It seems not to be a true change of heart but rather a 'oh, this pot drives me crazy, in order to prevent going mental I'll help the Muggles from now on'. Well, maybe I see it a bit too.. idk, serious. I do like the story, but this is just what bugs me a bit. That's also why I like to think the father was genuinely good, and the text says so after all, and didn't need the pot's 'persuasive power' to do good among his neighbours.

Quote:
I love this part - because, in addition to what I said above, actually the pot is responsible I think. It wasn't the wizard's intention to help muggles at all first.
I took that as an explanation to the Muggles of where their remedies come from. To make it less 'mysterious'. I think the fact that later the pot has this foot and the foot obviously didn't go away when the young wizard started to help his neighbours indicates that the old wizard never needed the pot's persuasion and was good on his own accord. At least that's how I read it.


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Old December 27th, 2008, 4:13 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

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Bold mine. And that's exactly what bothers me a bit about this story, to be honest. It seems not to be a true change of heart but rather a 'oh, this pot drives me crazy, in order to prevent going mental I'll help the Muggles from now on'. Well, maybe I see it a bit too.. idk, serious. I do like the story, but this is just what bugs me a bit. That's also why I like to think the father was genuinely good, and the text says so after all, and didn't need the pot's 'persuasive power' to do good among his neighbours.
This bothered me as well. Although I believe that the father had good intentions from the start, I think that the only reason the son decided to help everyone was because he didn't want the pot to bother him anymore, not because he had a change of heart.


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Old December 27th, 2008, 8:44 am
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Re: The Wizard and the Hopping Pot

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This bothered me as well. Although I believe that the father had good intentions from the start, I think that the only reason the son decided to help everyone was because he didn't want the pot to bother him anymore, not because he had a change of heart.
I agree it's not a change of heart, but I like it this way. IMO he found out that if he doesn't use magic the right way, it will turn against him, so he does the only sensible thing. That's far more realistic for a young man, than a real change of heart, and I think arrangements like this are quite usual in fairy tales.


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