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Neville Longbottom: The Other Chosen One

by David Haber

On the night that Sirius died, after the battle at the Ministry of Magic at the end of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Dumbledore showed Harry the complete Lost Prophecy. It is then we learn that it was possible that Neville could also have been the Chosen One. Dumbledore tells us this, and then immediately insists it could only have been Harry. Why mention it then, in the first place?

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Reader Comments: (Page 10)

As usual, J K Rowling is setting us up for a curveball. As far as Neville being the chosen one, I am of firm belief he is NOT. Simply from the fact Voldemort chose Harry and Dumbledore tells Harry is IS the one. But something is up her sleeve with Neville.
The three main characters are Harry, Ron and Hermoine. Other major characters such as Voldemort, Hagrid, Dumbledore and the Weasley family have all been developed. Of all the so called "minor" characters such as Dean Thomas, Seamus Finnegan, the Patils, Lavender Brown, other than Draco Malfoy, are all window dressing, not developed whatsoever. Not the case with Neville. Rowling has gone to great lengths to give a background to Neville; his parents, his grandmother, the rememberall, falling off the broom and breaking his wrist, Petrificus Totalus, even getting caught with Harry with the encounter with Fluffy, getting detention in the Forest, almost all in the first book with the exception of his parents at St. Mungo's in The Order of the Phoenix. Almost nothing in the second, third and fourth book, other than dancing at the Yule ball with Ginny. Rowling gets him involved in the first book, then almost nothing for a while and boom, back in the picture again in TOOTP. Hardly at all in The Half-Blood Prince.
Why does she give so much background for Neville, but nothing for the other minor characters? And why does it seem he is all over some books, but practically nothing in others? Got to be a reason. I am sure we find out in last book.

Posted by MIke McGrath from Columbus, Georgia on June 5, 2007 5:16 PM

MIke McGrath from Columbus,

Nice catch, I had not noticed this important observation, we do know more about Neville's background than of Albus, Draco or even Hermione's, although Hermione's known background tells us that there is nothing important or hidden in it, her parents are JUST dentists, all muggle, but you make a very good point with Neville.

I have always liked his character, the aparently not so bright, not so brave, not so popular, not so talented, but he has been tested under fire (sorry, under spells) and has always come out of it with a better than expected, more confident, more determined, more reliable. In a few words, Neville has grown parallel to Harry, maybe not to his level, but much more than any other character in the series.

Yes, Neville give us a few surprises on DH, and I really do want him to end up with Loony, they make such an odd couple, but they look good together.

Posted by Emilio from Mexico City, Mexico on June 6, 2007 10:23 AM

Wow, never thought of that- yes Voldemort may have ed Neville's grandfather (the Neville witnessed, and the reason he can see theastrals) and done a horcrux then, and "put" it in Neville. Still, what we know of Voldemort (and his "trophy" mania) leads to think that he would look for something old and historical to put his chunk of soul in, rather than a little boy - who can be out of control. By the way, if Voldemort had done that, would not he have organized some kind of Eaters watch over Neville as he would grow up, to make sure his horcrux was safe? The capture and torture of Neville's parents had nothing to do with horcruxes, it happened after Voldemort's disappearance, by Beatrix & Co. looking for information.

Posted by Cecil from Tacoma, WA on June 6, 2007 10:31 AM

what if neville isnt really neville? what if all these memory problems and no real family around him are hiding his true identity? remember the knight bus when harry is asked his name? neville longbottom came the reply. so in book 7 harry doesnt because harry hasnt been harry all along. so who is harry? my theory says "you have your mothers eyes" work it out with a good sprinkling of polyjuice potion.

Posted by neil from cannock staffs uk on June 6, 2007 2:09 PM

Neil from cannock -- I am not sure if I am following you. Are you suggesting that Neville is Harry and Harry is Neville? I don't know if that could be possible. I think I would be very disappointed in JKR if that is how it all ended.

Posted by Kim from Manchester on June 6, 2007 5:46 PM

I'm not sure I buy the possibility that Harry is actually Lily due to polyjuice potion. For several reasons that I can think of now that I am typing, but the first one I thought of...was that it would mean that Lily had a crush on, and kissed, Cho and Ginny. Also, when Hermione is making the potion in Chamber of Secrets, he does not seem to have ever taken it before.

I am certainly on board that Neville , in the 7th book, have a lot revealed about him.

On a side note, I saw while reading Prisoner of Azkaban, that Professor Trelawney makes a statement about the "veiled mysteries of the future" and then says "It is a gift granted to few" We know that JK doesn't use words lightly, could this be a clue to the Veil in the department of mysteries?

Posted by Amy from P. Kentucky on June 6, 2007 8:01 PM

Names:: Wand�s length:: No. of alphabets in the owner�s name

Harry Potter:: 11:: 11
James Potter:: 11:: 11
Lily Potter:: 10 �:: 10
Viktor Krum:: 10 �:: 10
Lord Voldemort:: 13 �:: 13

Interesting isn't it? [wand's length = number of alphabets in the owner's name]

This is one of the simple rules adopted by JKR to reduce the complexity of forming the magical world. Apart from these types of simple patterns there are also recurring numbers. Number 7 signifies importance.

Number of letters in "Granger" = 7
Number of letters in "Weasley" = 7
Number of letters in "Neville" = 7

This is a clear indication that Neville too play a great deal in the downfall of the Dark Lord along with the trio.

Posted by vivek from chennai, india on June 6, 2007 11:19 PM

If Voldemort ever gets a chance to duel Harry Potter, I think he not repeat the same mistake of using the same wand, which caused the prior incantation. He would probable prefer some other wand to make sure that everything proceeds in the perfect way. My guess is that he take Cedric's wand (which containing a single hair from the tail of a particularly fine male unicorn � must have been �seventeen� hands)

Neville�s wand too contains unicorn hair as its core material. There could be a possibility that Neville�s and Voldemort�s wand form the prior incarnation giving Harry a chance to vanquish the Dark Lord.

Posted by vivek from chennai, india on June 7, 2007 03:33 AM

vivek - It's a nice observation about wand length, but it doesn't always work. First, Lily's wand would have been gotten when her name was Evans, and Tom's when his name was Tom Riddle.

Lily Evans = 9, wand 10 �
Tom Riddle = 9, wand 13 �

But in addition to that:
Rubeus Hagrid = 12, wand 16
Ronald Weasley = 13, wand (when he gets his own) 14

and
Delores Umbridge = 15, wand "unusually short"

The bit about the number of letters in people�s names is pretty clever, though. I give you props for that.

Posted by Monkeeshrines from orlando on June 7, 2007 09:27 AM

No. of letters in �Philosopher�s Stone� = �Prisoner of Azkaban� = �Order of the Phoenix� = �Harry Potter and the� (the common preffix for the seven books) = �The Mirror of Erised� (JKR's favorite chapter) = No. of years Rowling took to complete the Harry Potter saga = No. of chapters in the first book = 17

The final book releases on 21-07-07 [2+1+0+7+0+7]
7 stamps of Harry Potter is being released on 17-07-07
1700 fans gets a chance to meet Rowling on the 21-07-07

Philosopher�s Stone � Bloomsbury Edition � The Boy Who Lived [Chapter: 1] Page 7:: Line 17

The word �the Potters� was used for the very first time in the Harry Potter saga.

Before entering into the next level...

�Neville Longbottom� - the only student having 17 letters in his name.

Number of letters in �Neville� = 7
Number of letters in �Neville Longbottom�= 17

Philosopher�s Stone � Bloomsbury Edition � The Mirror of Erised [Chapter: 12]

There was an inscription carved around the top of the Mirror Of Erised:
Erised stra ehru oyt ube cafru oyt on wohsi.

Deciphering the italics (reading from right to left) we get:
I show not your face but your heart�s desire.

Reading from right to left is one of a code employed in the HP saga. The encoded form of 17 is 71.

The Journey From Platform Nine And Three-Quarters [Chapter: 6]

Page 71:: Line 17

�A round-faced boy� - Neville Longbottom, was mentioned for the first time in the HP saga.

Posted by vivek from chennai, india on June 7, 2007 09:58 AM

Unfortunately, I believe that JKR has already debunked the speculation that Neville is related to the prophesy. She has said however that he continue to play a prominent role in the series conclusion.

Posted by Dan from St. Louis, MO on June 7, 2007 12:55 PM

Neville could have been the chosen one. But he is not. Voldemort definitely choose Harry, and marked him as his equal. While Neville probably be very relevant to the story, he is not the Chosen One. Rowling might have put him as another possibility to the Prophecy to help us better understand prophecies. That they have to be fullfilled and that not all of them are. When Voldemort fullfilled his part of the Prophecy, he chose Harry. Not Neville. As for someone making sure Neville not remember something..maybe. The theory is good.

Posted by ktluwen from Austin, Texas on June 7, 2007 1:31 PM

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