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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 31)

I think snapes on dumbledores side... i only have only have one reason to say this.

In Harry Potter Prizoner of Azkaban near the end Harry starts having thoughts that him stopping lupin and Sirius from ing peter pattigrew was a mistake... but dumbledore tells harry that that was the best thing he did as he had now sent wormtail to voldmort in dept to him (harry potter)...could this also be used on snape if he really is a eater.. when dumbledore gave snape a second chance snape was in dept to dumbledore this could prove that snape didnt dumbledore....

but there is a argument for snape being or not being a eater....
In Harry Potter and the goblet of fire when the eaters come to voldmort there is no mension of snape missing and voldmort clearly stats that there is ONE eater in hogwarts

The next argument is why did Karkaroff came to snape for help when the thing on his arm became clear and also snape showed the mark to the former minister of magic

Posted by ishajyu from Male' ,Maldives on April 15, 2007 10:48 AM

This has probably already been mentioned, but some of Snape's last words to Harry have hidden instructions to how he would best be able to defeat his enemies: "No Unforgivable curses from you Potter..." "...You haven't got the nerve or the ability", and stopping all Harry's attempts at cursing him; "blocked again, and again, and again, until you learn to keep your mouth shut and your mind closed Potter!" I count this as significant; the way it's given, as with all Snape's comments to Harry is cleverly phrased to force Harry into a particular course of action (history defines Snape's and Harry's relationship, that there never be any love lost between them though they are both obviously on the same side).

Posted by David Robert from Carlisle. Cumbria. UK. on April 17, 2007 05:38 AM

You know the Unbreakable vow that Snape made with Narcissa promised to help Malfoy through and through, so he's bound to that forever. Unless he s Bellatrix which is what he might do in the 7th book.
Also if he really had no choice but to dumbledore, then he'd be a bigger help to the order being close to Voldemort.

Posted by Russell from NJ, USA on April 17, 2007 1:12 PM

Even though Snape hates Harry, he does help protect him. Could it be possible, that Snape is also one of Harry's godparents? Most religions do specify two parents. So what religion is Harry and how many godparents are required?

Because Snape was ined to James for saving his life, maybe James made Snape Harry's godfather when James knew that his own life was possibly ending soon, when Voldemort was after them.

Posted by sharon from michigan on April 18, 2007 09:52 AM

Today is my daughter's birthday and I thought I'd celebrate by chiming in after years of chatting up all family, friends and neighbours.

It was reading this recent comment about religions and godparents from sharon in michigan which moved me to follow up today.

I believe there is a protective connection - of an owed as sharon states or perhaps of love - between Snape and Harry's parents - one or the other of them.

The night Harry's parents were ed by Voldemort, Snape went to Dumbledore to offer his services to the Order, to spy for them. Book 7 undoubtably reveal why that is. It could be a repaid but my sense is that Snapes motivation is out of some form of love - that powerful magic the author consistantly reminds us trump the dark stuff every time.

I'm curious to see in Book 7 if there's any further connection explored between Snape and Lily, beyond that lovely strand of memory Snape deposited in the Pensieve before his lession with Harry was interrupted. Can't wait unitl July!

I also read these books with an eye to all the biblical allusions they contain. They're everywhere, in my view.

The chosen one. The prophesy. The hunt for the child it may refer to. The curious similarity of the thrice defied/thrice denied. The use of the number 12 - especially when it involves the order of the phoenix - in many places. That darned goblet from which Dumbledore must drink to obtain the horcrux - note how many times he had to sip it's contents to complete his task and then he begged for water - and its similarity with all of the mythology surrounding a certain goblet drunk from as many times in an even more famous and well-read tale of betrayal, sacrifice and love.

I hope and do strongly believe that Snape's act is done reluctantly, bound by a tortured duty to serve Dumbledore's wishes, both to further a plan which likely unfold in Book 7 AND to protect the children.

This is also one of the wonderful threads I see throughout the books. What a lovely message to children reading this story. There's protection provided by the teachers at Hogwarts both through their elite magical instruction AND their most basic human care for their students. This so very much reflects my feelings for the many inspiring and generous teachers in my own life.

Draco Malfoy would have had to perform an unforgiveable curse on Dumbledore, after all, if Snape had not taken that burden on himself. I suspect this was yet another element of Dumbldore's pleading to him in that heartbreaking scene as he gasped, "Severus... please". (I choke up every time I read or say this. It's such a beautiful scene.)

The children at the school are protected by their teachers, Snape included. Dumbledore and Snape both knew there was an ominous task set for Draco by Voldemort. They both protected the child - they know Harry can hold his own against Voldemort but Draco would have suffered if the task had not been carried out. Snapes actions saved Draco. Dumbledore sacrificed himself for the sake of the child's life, for the sake of an innocent soul. As for Snape's sacrifice, Dumbledore has referred to what Severus has given up before. ing Dumbledore was just one element of that sacrifice. Snape's role is the biggest in this story. He's the hinge here. It all rests on his ingness to give up everything.

It runs thick in these books. Love, sacrifice, and redemption. I see Snape as one whose "betrayal" of Dumbledore is so similar to the famous "betrayal" by a kiss. There's currently a popular revisionist examination of the "betrayal" in the Passion. Maybe I'm reading too much into all of this but I see many obvious parallels.

Ultimately, Snape has set in motion a series of events which see "love" prevail over darkness. If this doesn't happen then the fate of all the "characters" - Harry inlcuded - may matter very little. I believe this is what Dumbledor knows to be true, what Snape knows to be true and what Harry have to know in the end to succeed and survive.

That said, I hope and do believe that Harry survives. And, of course, my bumper sticker reads "Trust Snape!"

Posted by fanfamily from ann arbor on April 18, 2007 12:22 PM

for the last clue, Dumbledore is not pleading to him, but to save Harry! Snape has realised Harry is there somewhere, and did you notice that straight after he ed Dumbledore, snape lead all the eaters out of the room?

Posted by samster278 from Stockport on April 20, 2007 01:48 AM

You may be on to something with this. In SS/PS Snape is the one that sets up the potions needed to get through to the mirror with a potions riddle about which ones help. Hermione states that wizards are not too bright at solving riddles and are not likely to pass through this to get to the stone.

The ministry people question Harry about there being 2 broomsticks on the tower where Dumbledore was ed and figured out that Harry (or someone) must have been with Dumbledore when he d. Snape instantly was able to assess the situation and knew he had to protect Harry when he saw there were 2 broomsticks. The other eaters were not sharp enough to pick this up. Good clue catch!

Posted by Dave Porter from New Mexico on April 20, 2007 9:34 PM

I think we are all overlooking the fact that in the fifth book, Dumbledore gets Snape to teach Harry Occulumency and the reason given for this was that dumbledore didn't want Voldemort to read his mind through Harry. Reasonable, right?

But by letting Snape teach Harry, isn't dumbledore letting Snape's mind be readily available for Voldemort? By doing so, wouldnt Voldemort find out, if he wanted to, whether Snape was on the good side or bad side? Wouldn't this prove harmful if Snape is working as a spy for dumbledore?

Posted by Devy from toronto, Canada on April 21, 2007 12:44 PM

Voldemort wanted snape to be on dumbledore's side to get information from dumbledore, so voldemort must have already known that snape is giving harry occlumency lessons, now the fifth book decide snape was working undercover for whome dumbledore or voldemort both have their good reasons o support that he must have been working for either side.

Posted by Arjun Srivastava from Mumbai, Maharashtra on April 22, 2007 07:48 AM

You are right but we also have to remember it was Dumbledore that had asked Snape to give Occulumency lessons.
So Dumbledore was aware that Voldemort would have access to Snapes Mind....

Posted by Devy from Toronto Canada on April 23, 2007 07:47 AM

Many seem to believe that Severus did not hear the entire prophesy due to 2 pieces of information, separated by 2 books. I do think that Severus heard the whole prophesy. I believe it is Albus who said the spy was only able to report the first half. However, when Sybil comes out of her trance at the end of Prisoner of Azkaban, she has no recollection of anything Harry had said or done while she was in that trance � believing she had simply dozed off. If Severus had been discovered halfway through the prophecy and thrown out at that time, how would Sybil have known it was him? She would have still been in a trance and would thus not have seen him being caught and thrown out. But Sybil had said she had actually seen Severus� And why would they have waited around until Sybil was finished to throw him out? What�s more, she makes no mention of him being thrown out, simply that he had been caught by "that uncouth barman". In addition, would Albus have simply tossed Severus out after overhearing such an important piece of information? Unless, of course, he had actually heard the whole prophecy and, perhaps under Albus� orders, told Voldemort he had only heard the first half.

Posted by Monkeeshrines from Orlando FL on April 23, 2007 09:15 AM

The prophecy itself isn't all that long. It's possible that the barman caught Snape listening at the keyhole and accosted him in the hallway for a few moments, while Sybil continued to prophesy to Dumbledore. By the time the barman interrupted them to inform them that Snape had been spying on them, Sybil would have come out of the trance and been fully aware of Snape's presence. If she's unaware that she made a prophecy in the first place, she wouldn't be able to tell how much Snape had overheard. As for when Dumbledore found out the extent of Snape's knowledge, either he overheard a scuffle in the hallway partway through the prophecy, or else Snape confessed how much (or how little) he'd heard later on, perhaps when he turned his loyalties from Voldemort to Dumbledore.

Posted by Nancy from Virginia on April 23, 2007 4:25 PM

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