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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 18)

Anybody considered that the prophecy relates to the fact that Harry or Neville has to so that the other can Voldemort. Another thing that i have noticed, that may or may not have any standing is the fact that the sorting hat states that the houses inside hogwarts need to stand united. Well in a battle against voldemort then they would in essance, Harry, Hermione, Ron and Nevilles resemebalance to the other houses. Finally i think that in a final battle if Harry was to be struck down then it would give the incentive for Neville to produce powerful magic which he is obviously able to do if he wasnt so forgetful. Harry makes comments about such talent when hes teaching the DA.

Posted by devilsnight on July 5, 2007 09:00 AM

The ideas presented in the original essay are generally well-crafted, and some of the comments made are fantastic. I noticed over and over people suggesting that Neville had witnessed his parents' torture. He was one year old, if that. There is no way he would actually remember that, even if he was in the room. I don't think his Gran did any sort of Memory Charm, but I think it's quite possible that every attempt to shield him from Voldemort was made, possibly by his parents-- and that may have been the reason for their torture in the first place. But I think the reason he gets so upset about his parents (particularly in Moody's class and when Malfoy, in book 5, makes those disgusting comments) is because he's seen them (his parents), every year, with his grandmother. He KNOWS the result of Voldemort's malice, not because he saw it when it happened, but because his parents have been taken from him.
I buy into the whole forgetfulness and clumsiness conspiracy theory, though. I think that someone has done this to him to keep him down, but as he matures and spends more time around great wizards and witches at school, his magical abilities are being stirred and refined.
The bubblegum wrappers-- if JKR mentioned it, and made a point of including a conversation in the book about it, it figures in somehow. It may not be some huge revelation, but I am pretty confident that it be mentioned somewhere, somehow in ly Hallows.
The "betrayal" thing-- I don't see that happening. Neville's been too good a person all this time to turn on the trio.

Posted by Ashly from Memphis, TN on July 6, 2007 07:13 AM

I read a biography on JK and she says Neville is her favorite character. so he probably wont betray the trio. maybe his grandma was crying because after what happened to her son she might be afraid to let him use magic, but wont take it away from herself because shes too used to using it.

Posted by Abby from Johnstown,PA on July 6, 2007 09:32 AM

Remember in the end of the 5th book when Dumbledore just finished giving Harry his explanation for all his mistakes and a few pages later is now telling Harry about the flaws in his plans, Dumbledore mentions to Harry that �I cared to much.� Which was something �I never dreamed that I would have such a person on my hands� which in short, can be translated to �Dumbledore never meant to become so attached to Harry� well anyway, it got me thinking about what he meant by this because it sounds to me like he�s apologizing to Harry for something. But what would he be apologizing for?

And in the 4th book when Dumbledore tells Harry that �we must all face the choice between doing what is right and what is easy� what if that applied to Dumbledore as well? I know that most everyone likes Dumbledore as do I, but what if he did exactly that, what if he knew exactly who it was that the Prophecy meant. But he did what he thought was right at the time, even though it wasn�t easy, and since Voldemort was already going after Harry and that there really was no stopping him, Dumbledore allowed him to keep believing that it was Harry in the Prophecy, therefore using Harry as a decoy. Basically, letting Harry so that other�s could live and in doing that he�d be saving thousands or even more and also allowing the Real Chosen One (maybe Neville or Draco) to grow up unhunted so that he could fulfill the Prophecy.

But Dumbledore failed, Voldemort didn�t Harry. Then Dumbledore felt bad about his earlier decision (condemning an innocent child to that fate, even if it were for a better cause) so he helped him repeatedly to make up for it, which it then created a bond between him and Harry and that�s what Dumbledore was apologizing to Harry for. Dumbledore admitted it himself that he wasn�t perfect and that he had made some major mistakes in his life, maybe this could be one of them. Which is the real reason why he was so keen to have Harry understand the difference between what�s �right� and what�s �easy�. He didn�t want Harry to find this out the hard way and feel betrayed by/feel resentment towards his Headmaster whom he�s very loyal to and thinks so highly of.

Posted by Heather from Charlevoix, MI on July 6, 2007 9:59 PM

I think this theory may be right, because when (fake) Moody shows the Cruciatus curse, Neville is feeling tortured, and scared.

Perhaps he's scared, because he doesn't want to end up the same way his parents are, if he is the chosen one, who has to face lord Voldemort...?

Posted by Nick from Bramton,Ontario on July 7, 2007 10:24 AM

Thanks for the awesome article! I have never thought about the reason that Neville's grandmother may have been crying after he finally recognised his wizarding powers, but I think it is quite plausabile that she did not want him to get them because of an unkown reason linked with his parents . Good call on that one!

On the other hand, Neville did say to harry that his gran would "give anything to have a grandson like you" as mentioned in the article. This could mean that she was actually very happy when Neville got his powers, and has always wished for him to be more of an achiever like Harry, or maybe she has gotten over the fact that Neville got his powers even though she secretly wanted him to be a squib and wishes he was more like Harry in that he would be more likely to be able to protect himself from danger.

Nice theory about the bubble gum wrappers- it is possible that Neville's mother is sending him messages and it's a very interesting idea that seems like something JK would use...

Posted by zoe from australia on July 8, 2007 01:04 AM

Is it too much to ask for Neville to Bellatrix Lestrange? Because of Neville's interesting backstory concerning his disabled parents and the possibility of him being the Chosen One, he obviously has potential. However, is that enough and does Neville have the courage to someone?

Posted by nightowl on July 8, 2007 3:49 PM

It is an interesting idea to have Neville take on Bellatrix. I think he show the true power he has and finally make his Gran proud.

Will he doing it?

Posted by Connor K from Rigby, ID on July 8, 2007 8:01 PM

Another "clue" that points to Neville's memory being important is that in the 2nd or 3rd book, Neville is described as "a boy...with the worst memory Harry had ever seen", or something like that. Isn't that sort of a strange way to describe Neville, especially when his forgetfullness is not as central to his character as, say, his ineptitude at magic...

Posted by Anonymous on July 9, 2007 12:57 PM

Some of your points are pretty convincing...I guess Neville could be under a spell of some sort..but I defenitely don't think that Neville Betray Harry, Hermione, Ron, or any of his friends..he just seems to be very loyal to me.

Posted by Jenna on July 9, 2007 2:40 PM

Here's another of my two cents (you probably have about $10.58 by now...) Regarding the Droobles wrappers, Jo has confirmed in her �Rumours� section that there are no secret message. I tend to believe her when she states things outright like that. But it is quite a romantic notion for there to be at least some symbolic meaning to the wrappers.

Posted by Monkeeshrines from orlando fl on July 9, 2007 8:20 PM

Great article generally

Regarding Neville betraying Harry et al: for Dunmbledore, who according to JKR is the epitome of goodness, it is our choices which make us who we are.

So yes, Neville may be in an analogous situation to Pettigrew but I suspect he NOT betray our heroes. Rather he make the CHOICE not to, and thus provide another illustration of JKR's idea that choices, not genes, make us who we are.

Posted by Edith from Cardiff on July 10, 2007 12:01 AM

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