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Why did Dumbledore have James' cloak?

by David Haber

On a new post on her official web site, J.K. Rowling admitted she made a mistake in New York when she was asked, what question have you never been asked that you ought to have been asked? She now says the question should have been, Why did Dumbledore have James' invisibility cloak at the time of James' death, given that Dumbledore could make himself invisible without a cloak?

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Reader Comments: (Page 54)

i was thinking of the 7 registered animagi of the century... McGonagall is one of them... then? surely dumbledore? so dumbledore could have been a fly (not joking, rita was a beetle) so he oculd be by harry's side always... and so he could know when harry is using the cloak.

Posted by smk on March 22, 2007 09:43 AM

In CoS, Hermione checks all the registered Animagi. She checks the records again in GoF, to see if Rita was one of the seven. Do you honestly think that if Hermione came across Dumbledore's name she would keep it a secret and not go "Hey guess whose name I came across in the Animagi records..."? No! I too think that Dumbledore is a registered Animagus (a phoenix rather than a fly) but registered before he was 50; which was last century.

Posted by Ashley from Missouri on March 22, 2007 1:54 PM

I have often wondered if Dumbledore or somebody equally important in Harry's life might transfigure into a spider. In the very beginning of Sorcerer's Stone spiders are mentioned being in his cupboard under the stairs. Spiders fall on Dumbledore's hat in the shed at the Weasley's just for two instances. Since somehow the school knows exactly where Harry is living (Harry Potter, Cupboard under the stairs says one letter, and Harry Potter, smallest bedroom says another letter) Surely somebody has been in the house with Harry all those first 10 years.

Posted by Amy from P. Kentucky on March 22, 2007 6:44 PM

Amy, someone has said it before on this thread or another, but given that Dumbledore was about 150 years old, it seems likely that he was registered as an animagus during the 19th century. (I mentioned the previous poster to acknowledge them, Amy. Not to belittle your idea.)
I'm not sure if the spiders are significant anywhere except COS. There is the possibility that JKR is freaked out by spiders and is trying to exorcise the problem... but spiders do seem to be associated with witchcraft generally so they may be mere scene setting.
I think Arabella Figg and her cats/kneazles were the ones assigned to keep an eye on Harry for the first ten years. And possibly all those witches and wizards he noticed from time to time. Could they have been members of the Order? I'd have to do some cross checking of descriptions, but that might be a possibility.

Posted by Elizabeth from Australia on March 23, 2007 05:00 AM

I was thinking of spiders also but for a different reason. The name Spinner's End made me wonder if it was a double meaning, in that a person's end was foretold in that chapter -- the spinner being the person making plans like webs. Reading of Snape make the Unbreakable Vow, I thought it was his end being foretold, which would go along with your suggestion of someone transfiguring into a spider. I don't think he knows enough of Harry's doings though, to be the one with him through the years. If Snape discovered the Marauders' secret, I would bet anything that he would try to become an animagus also.

Posted by Patty from Quincy,Massachusetts on March 23, 2007 06:16 AM

But how would the cats or the random witches and wizards he was seeing from time to time, know that he had switched from the cupboard under the stairs, to the smallest bedroom?

Posted by Amy from P.kentucky on March 23, 2007 09:08 AM

Amy: The spiders told him! Remember, JK describes in the book that there are spiders on his socks in the cupboard under the stairs? The socks is the icing on the cake of this clue, as socks is a "running clue", used for emphasis whenever JK wants to highlight something important...

Posted by Dave Haber from Los Angeles, CA on March 23, 2007 10:14 AM

I don't think James would have made a horcrux, they say that a horcrux is the darkest magic of all and James is NOT a dark wizard. but that is the only thing i think is wrong, the other stuff might be true.

Posted by Nils from Skellefte�, Sweden on March 23, 2007 10:29 AM

I hadn't heard the thought that socks are mentioned whenever anything is mentioned that we should take note of...that's interesting, perhaps you should do an article on that =)

Posted by Amy from P. Kentucky on March 23, 2007 3:35 PM

Actually, our good friend, Galadriel Waters, has already written a great book all about socks and the other big Harry Potter clues and mysteries. It's called The Ultimate Unofficial Guide to the Mysteries of Harry Potter and I highly recommend it. I guarantee if you read this, you'll never look at the Harry Potter books the same again, it's like lifting a veil from the books and allowing you to see all kinds of new and wonderful stuff that was previously hidden!

Posted by Dave Haber from Los Angeles, CA on March 23, 2007 8:11 PM

I don't think so. James would still be alive and would have gone to Harry already. Do you really think Harry's dad would somebody?

Posted by Emily Huamani from Woodbridge, Virginia on March 24, 2007 3:36 PM

Emily, I can imagine given the right circumstances, in battle or protecting Lily, Harry, or anyone for that matter, that yes, James would if he had to. Outright cold-blooded ? No. Definitely not. And nor can I imagine anyone that close to Dumbledore making a horcrux. So in essence you are right. And so was Harry when he stopped Sirius and Lupin ing Peter in POA. I think that act of mercy in the end prove vital.

Posted by Elizabeth from Australia on March 25, 2007 02:31 AM

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