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Unanswered Dumbledore Questions

by David Haber

These are elements of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince that would seem to be related to either the Dumbledore or Snape mysteries, but they have loop-holes or unresovled bits of information, and we're not sure about them and are still checking into them...

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Reader Comments: (Page 8)

Fawks was loyal to DD....Is he still?
Will he carry on helping the Order (most likely named after him)?
Will he transfer his loyalty to Harry? McGonagal?
Could he be bequeathed to some one in DD's ?
Is trere a "wild" for him to return to?
Is that what finally s a pheonix? The of the one they are loyal to?
Doby was loyal to DD... he stay at Hogwarts? Will Winky?
Will Winky's witnessing Barty jr. being ed by Fudge's dementor make her more inclined to serve Morty?
Perhaps take Doby's place with the Malfoy's?

Posted by Kevin from Wisconsin on January 3, 2007 10:46 AM

About the portrait: the first time when Dumbledore left and Umbridge become the new Headmistress, there was no portrait of Dumbledore wasn't there?

Another thing that bugs me is that portraits are really talkative... so why didn't Harry or McGonnagal immediately go to the portrait of Dumbledore to talk with that and to get the real story? That something I would have done...

Posted by Myra from Amsterdam on January 3, 2007 2:48 PM

Ever notice how Dumbledore refrains from revealing the WHOLE truth about something (such as when Harry finally learns from Trelawny that it was actually Snape who listened at the keyhole), in effect misleading people into believing something that is less than the truth? I keep wondering if Dumbledore might not have done this when telling Harry about the prophecy. Harry himself asks why V chose Harry instead of Neville when the boys were a year old, wondering why Voldemort didn't wait until they'd grown older to see which of them proved to be the greater threat. In my opinion, Voldemort would NOT have chosen one boy over the other--if Voldemort perceived any threat at all (according to the first part of the prophecy which Snape revealed to V after his eavesdropping incident), I think Voldemort would have been determined to BOTH boys to remove all possible threat against him. He just went after Harry first, and due to Lily's love, got the AK curse rebounded onto Voldemort himself, thereby disempowering him.
It makes you wonder if Neville might actually be the Chosen One. We don't know very much about the Longbottoms, except that Neville was raised by his gran after his parents were tortured into insanity. As for his parents, his father was an auror, and the attack against him and his wife supposedly came after Voldemort's disappearance, ostensibly to see if the Eaters could force Frank and Alice to tell them where Voldemort was. But doesn't it make more sense that the Longbottoms would have been tortured in an attempt to force them to give up Neville's location so he could be ed? We do know that the Potters went into hiding with Harry, but the Longbottoms could have given Neville to his gran for safekeeping in an unplottable location. If they were, in fact, tortured to give up Neville, Dumbledore might have decided to alter the facts so as to protect Neville, who is very sensitive. Harry could be trusted to keep quiet about the fact that Neville's parents were in St. Mungo's, but I believe DD would never have burdened Harry with the details surrounding the Longbottoms' torture if it was because they suffered permanent brain injury protecting their son.
J.K.Rowling keeps things under her hat for a reason, and I think her lack of information about the Longbottoms may indicate that Neville is the Chosen One instead of Harry. Bring on Book 7!

Posted by chris from virginia on January 3, 2007 4:02 PM

'Where is Umbridge's Portrait?'

I recall, I think some where in the series that Harry asked someome [likely dumbledore] why the portraits were there, and he think he said those heads that had made important accomplishments.

Posted by PIeboy from London on January 4, 2007 12:25 PM

Umbridge never made it into the Head's office...
The magic that controls the room never recognized her authority...
She had to stay in her old office and just put a big wooden block that said "Headmistress" on her desk..

Posted by Kevin from Wisconsin on January 4, 2007 1:43 PM

For some reason I cant see why Snape would Dumbledore. I know Dumbledore is , but at Snapes hands, I mean Dumbledore was always telling everyone how good Snape is, and he would never hear a word against him, so why would Snape Dumbledore?

Posted by Nusrath Khan from London, England on January 6, 2007 12:50 PM

I disagree with the point you made about Dumbledore being a fake. Maybe he is, and that would be an excellent theory, but I am thinking that the whole reason of the pensive is to store memories out of your head, and so you would keep
all memories including your own in glass bottles. The only time a person removes the memory from their head is when adding new ones, I think.

Posted by Rebecca on January 9, 2007 11:50 PM

I'm not sure if this has been brought up yet, but I was wondering something regarding the portrait of Dumbledore. When Harry looks at it, Dubledore is sleeping.

I'm not sure if that means he's completely, and the "sleeping" is actually that he's not ready to be active in his portrait like the other Headmasters. Or if he's asleep from the Drought of potion or some other means.

All Dumbledore wanted to do after driking that potion in the cave, assuming it was in fact DOTD, was "", or as the potion would have you do, sleep.

Just an idea I had!

Posted by Angie from Streetsboro, OH on January 19, 2007 01:11 AM

Excellent website, fantastic theories and comments.

Here are my thoughts:

1. Although I believe Dumbledore is , was it his body at the and where is his wand? I believe he has plans to help Harry in some form but not as a living person. I don't believe DD would make a horcrux, but I don't discount the possibility of some other (good) magical means of influencing events.

2.Harry must face Voldemort alone at the end. There be a battle involving Dumbledore's army and the Order of the Phoenix against Voldemort's supporters but it come down to one against one. JKR not cheat Harry of this, I am sure. From the beginning, Harry's life has been difficult. He has had to be resourceful, think on his feet, learning the reality of being the one marked by the Dark Lord. All of this has been building up to book 7 where Harry must and face Voldemort.

3. Harry was still under the influence of Felix Felicis when Slughorn took the venom from Aragog's fangs. That must have significance. At some future time it be "lucky" that it exists. And would it not be fitting that the venom of the creature scape-goated by Tom Riddle in the Chamber of Secrets would play a role in the downfall of Lord Voldemort?

4.Why can house-elves Apparate inside Hogwarts? And why hasn't Hermione noticed such? Or did I miss something regarding that fact? House-elves possess powerful magic which is dismissed by all in the books because the elves are bound to service of their masters. However, Dobby was powerful enough to protect Harry from Lucius Malfoy, a known Eater, without retribution. Will the Hogwarts house-elves be a force to be reckoned with, when the creatures of the Forbidden Forest see a Hogwarts without the protection of Dumbledore?

5. I find Dumbledore's obvious protection of and trust in certain characters to be telling of some future role to be played by these characters -- Snape, Hagrid and Trelawney. On several occasions he has insisted that each one remain at Hogwarts, in spite of others' opinions to the contrary. I see Snape as a friend to Harry, albeit maybe uning and only because of some allegiance to Dumbledore. Trelawney needs the protection of Hogwarts for some reason. Hagrid is obviously a strong ally to Harry.
In the context of Dumbledore's usual manner of unobtrusive direction, the scene where Umbridge tried to force Trelawney out of Hogwarts stood out as significant.

6. I have a theory that the prophecy speaks about three people. Neville has been an important character from the beginning and throughout the series. He play into the reading of the prophecy somehow. The number 3 seems important in the books. I think there is room for this interpretation into the words "either", "other" and "neither". I am still puzzling this out but it has nagged me since I first read the prophecy. The prophecy, by nature, is ambiguously worded and be clear only by hindsight. I don't think the other boy who was considered as potentially the opponent to LV, Neville, should be so quickly dismissed, especially as Harry tends to gather around himself those who others dismiss -- loners, underdogs and house-elves. I know Dumbledore believed Neville to be out of the running, but in HBP, Dumbledore repeatedly told Harry his suspicions about the Horcruxes could be wrong. Maybe he was in error about the prophecy.

What do you think?

Posted by Patty from Quincy,Massachusetts on January 23, 2007 08:19 AM

Great insights.
First, I believe that Dumbledore is protecting Trelawney because Voldemort would love to get his hands on that prophesy and would try to extract it from her subconcious. After all that's exactly what Voldemort did to Bertha Jorkins.
Second, your thought #6 blew me away because I too have been bothered by the wording in the prophesy. For me the phrase "neither can live while the other survives" just doesn't make sense when referring to two people. That is to say how can neither Harry nor Voldemort live if Voldemort survives. But it begins to make sense if referring to three people. I was originally thinking "Neither Harry nor Riddle can live while Voldemort survives". This would imply redemption for Riddle [who I feel is unredeemable]. Then after reading H.B.P I thought it might refer to Snape or possibly Malfoy.
But I like your thinking about Neville.
Didn't J.K. say something about that the Prophecy needs to be read carefully?

Posted by Mikey from New Jersey on January 25, 2007 8:26 PM


You're right, she did say something about how she and Trelawney worked very hard on the wording of the prophecy. I still cannot figure out how the prophecy play out. I have a feeling that the word "neither" relates to Voldemort since he is the negative (evil) character. So I think that would mean "Voldemort can live while the other survives". If Harry is "the other", and as he is called the boy who lived, surviving Voldemort's attack at age 1, this does not bode well for Harry, because then I would read the prophecy to mean "Voldemort can live while Harry survives." Does Harry have to to Voldemort?

Posted by Patty from Quincy,MA on January 27, 2007 09:59 AM

To continue on with your thread...
If "neither" means Voldemort, then wouldn't "either" mean Harry? Then the passage "either must at the hand of the other" [this quote is from my memory. hope it's right] would mean "Harry must at the hand of Voldemort"
So now I have a problem with this train of thought because it would then be decided that Harry s, Voldy lives. And J.K. would get an eternal bat-bogey hex for an ending like that. How can we bring Neville back into the equation?

Posted by mikey from New Jersey on January 27, 2007 6:47 PM

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