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Snape Clues

by David Haber

These are the clues contained in the pages of Harry Pottter and the Half-Blood Prince which support the possibility that Snape is not really a Death Eater, has remained loyal to Dumbledore, and all through the book, Snape is working on Dumbledore's Orders.

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Reader Comments: (Page 12)

I believe that Snape is good, and that is all there is to it. There must be something Dumbledore didn't tell us, because otherwise he wouldn't have trusted him. He's not stupid.

A clue I found was that Harry was forced to watch Dumbledore arc out of the window after Snape hit him with "Avada Kedavra". We all know that this is not the acutal spell that Snape performed, because if it was, A) Dumbledore would have just slumped over and B) Harry's "Petrificus Totalus" would have stopped working well before Dumbledore hit the ground.

The spell I think Snape used instead is the same one he used on Harry while they were battling. Harry arced up, and when he hit the ground, all the breath had been knocked out of him. (sorry I don't have the direct quote, I don't have the book with me at the moment) It was only when Fawkes, a Pheonix with many magical healing properties, whooshed by him that he actually got his breath back. The spell had the same effects on both of them, and it would have ed Dumbledore because of the long drop from the tower and his increasingly unstable condition.

To back up one of the points made in the actual essay, we know that to perform an Unforgivable Curse, you must have a huge hatred for the person. You cannot just aim your wand and say the words. Now that we know that Snape did not use Avada Kedavra, we know that when he said the words he could not hate Dumbledore or else the curse would work. The hatred and repulsion etched in his face must be for what he is doing, not the person he is doing it to.

Sorry if someone has already posted a similar argument, I havn't had time to look at the previous 11 pages of comments. I think this is a wonderful site and if I hadn't found it I would have been angry at Snape until the next book came out. That would have been very bad. So I guess I'm saying thank you!:)

Posted by Sarah from Hogwarts on December 11, 2006 7:27 PM

Yeah, I agree. The new director kind screwed it up. Something as simple as Snape being knocked out might have led to some big clues. Who knows?

Posted by Marc Silverman from Arizona on December 11, 2006 7:38 PM

Hermione also suggested that maybe it was like an illness and had to get worse before it got better. A few times during the lessons Snape would suddenly become filled with rageif all Harry did was fail to protect himself. Snape hates Harry but I believe he is trying to protect Harry, no matter how indirectly.

Posted by Marc Silverman from Arizona on December 11, 2006 7:49 PM

Okay, now that I've had the chance to read over most of the comments ( I stopped at about page 6, I couldn't bear it after a while), I have time to say my own thoughts about some of these things.

Snape and Lily did not perform an Unbreakable Vow. There would have been no point, and after Snape called Lily a Mudblood, I honestly can't see why she would ever want to speak to Snape again.

However, this says nothing about Snape's feelings for Lily. I believe that Snape did love Lily, and that is the importance of her eyes in the 7th book. Snape have seen the eyes of the one person he loved on the body of the one person he hated.

This is my theory: Once Snape found out what Voldemort wanted him to do, he begged Voldemort not to Lily. I believe that initially, he refused and called Snape weak for loving someone that much. Then, Snape went to Dumbledore. He knew that Dumbledore alone had the power to help Lily. When Snape went to Dumbledore for help, he broke down. Everyone had breakdowns, it's natural. His passion for Lily and his concern for her safety probably would have caused some chain reaction inside himself, especailly if he had to explain it all outloud. Pain seems much more real when it's out of your head and out in the open.

Anyway, while Snape was having his breakdown, Dumbledore could have performed Legilimency. This would have been the only time that Dumbledore would have been able to do this, considering that Snape is the most accomplished Occlumens in the world (JKR never actually said this, but I've come to assume it to be true). This would be the reason that Dumbledore knows that Snape is good, and the Dark Lord doesn't. Though Voldemort may be the most accomplished Legilimens (although I believe that Snape said this to embellish for dramatic effect, or to make Narcissa believe that he was trustworthy), Snape could be his match in Occlumens. This is why he could last so long as a double agent.

My prediction is that Snape reveal this to Harry as they battle in the 7th book, which is how we find out.

In response to Mistral from Switzerland, the first Patronus is the same as the second Patronus. There is only one Patronus cast. There are two Harry's in this scene. One Harry is the Harry that went down to the lake to save Sirius and found the Dementors. This Harry attempted to conjure a Patronus, but failed. The Harry that actually conjured the Patronus was a couple hours older and had already saved Buckbeak and saw the Patronus. He went back in time and went to see his father. Instead of meeting his father, he cast a successful patronus that saved himself (the 3 hours younger version of himself) from the dementors. The 3 hours younger Harry saw the 3 hours older Harry casting the Patronus.

That probably doesn't clear it up for you, but just think about it. If you went back in time, you would be in two places at once, correct? Harry was in two places at once. One place he was , and at the other he was saving himself from the .

Posted by Sarah (again) from Gryffindor Tower on December 11, 2006 8:58 PM

Harry cast the patronus charm that saved Serius and himself.....
He had gone back in time so he was there the first time it happened, both as the rescuer and rescuee...
that was why Hermione was so careful to warn Harry about the dangers of time travel... if you don't keep track of events, you'll loose your mind..

Posted by Kevin from Wisconsin on December 12, 2006 06:34 AM

I think Dumbledore trusted Snape completely because when Snape turned from the Dark side, Dumbledore made him swear an Unbreakable Vow never to go back. He could, therefore, be completely trusted, because the instant he truly turned evil, he'd be .

Posted by Erin on December 14, 2006 09:17 AM

Where does it say anywhere in any of the books that Snape made the unbreakable Vow with Dumbledore?

Posted by Marc Silverman on December 14, 2006 09:52 AM

Nowhere. It's just a logical conclusion based on the fact that we know Dumbledore trusts Snape and we have no reason to understand why.

Posted by Dave Haber from Los Angeles, CA on December 14, 2006 09:56 AM

All we know is that Dumbledore has to see the best in anyone. Who knows? Maybe you are right. JK does like to throw suprises at us.

Posted by Marc Silverman on December 15, 2006 05:51 AM

I'm not really sure what to think. Some of your clues make sense, but the one about Dobby saying that he would throw himself up off of the topmost tower (this being the very same tower that Dumbledore d on), I think that this was just emphasis that Dobby would throw himself of a very, very high location instead of it having something to do with Dumbledore.

I do think that some of your other comments are sheer genius, though. Thank you. I still stand firm in my opinion that Dumbledore is , but you've changed my thoughts about the reason why he d. At first I thought it was because Snape did it because of the Unbreakable Vow, and now I think I did it because Dumbledore told him to.

Posted by HP Fan from Ravenclaw Tower (i'm smart) on December 15, 2006 5:47 PM

Hello, again. I can't wait to read the sixth book again! I haven't read the entire site, but I do think that I should keep reading.

Posted by HP Fan from Ravenclaw Tower (again) on December 15, 2006 6:54 PM

In response to Erin, I don't think that Snape made an Unbreakable Vow. He went back to Voldemort, didn't he? And whether one is good or evil really depends on your point of view, and I don't think that Unbreakable Vows are meant to be subjective. Plus, if Snape made an Unbreakable Vow not to go back, he wouldn't have been able to make his Unbreakable Vow to Narcissa, would he?

Posted by Sarah from The Common Room on December 15, 2006 8:10 PM

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