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-   -   Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge? (http://www.cosforums.com/showthread.php?t=102695)

rigdoctorbri March 23rd, 2007 9:13 pm

Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Why was Voldemort's identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge? Dumbledore tells us that very few people would know that the handsome Tom Riddle was in fact Voldemort. Why is this? After so many years of infamous marauding, and battles, if Dumbledore knew who Lord Voldemort's true identity was, why was it not made public? I would think this would have been the scoop of a reporter's dream.

Dumbledore knew Lord Voldemort's true identity even before there was Volde War I.

mdb09 March 23rd, 2007 9:21 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
I thought some people did know. They've shuddered at the fact that that "nice young boy" turned into Voldemort. And it's not exactly comforting to know you knew him. Plus, in the grand scheme of the population, only a few people even knew Tom Riddle, so it wouldn't have made a difference.

HelterSkelter March 23rd, 2007 9:25 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Really I always thought of it as Tom Riddle not being known very well and then surfacing as lord voldemort and people not knowing about Tom Riddle at all

rigdoctorbri March 23rd, 2007 9:33 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Actually, some (and I emphasize the word "some") people did know, and do know. However, today they refer to him as He-who-must-not-be-named, and their hearts leap out of their throats if you mention LORD VOLDEMORT. However, not a single one has ever referred to him as Tom Riddle.

Quote:

Originally Posted by HelterSkelter (Post 4406856)
Really I always thought of it as Tom Riddle not being known very well and then surfacing as lord voldemort and people not knowing about Tom Riddle at all

Tom Riddle was well known. As Head Boy he would have been known by an entire generation of Hogwart's students and faculty.

Weasleywannabe March 23rd, 2007 9:44 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
It infuriated him to be know as Tom Riddle. He thought it to be very common and common was something he did not want. I can't imagine anyone calling him a name he hated so much and living to tell the tale. Except for Dumbledore of course.

ModernInkling March 23rd, 2007 9:46 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
I've always thought that Voldemort deliberately destroyed as many traces of his old identity as he could. And, most people who accidentally stumbled upon any of the remaining evidence of his old identity, were probably too scared to say anything about it. Perhaps this was one of the reasons why he always hated and feared Dumbledore so much - he was one of the only ones who knew how he'd started out.

Matty2128 March 23rd, 2007 9:53 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
People did know about Tom Riddle that is his ''good'' name( or not as evil as he would become). So when he became totaly evil they started calling him Voldemort. It is like Darth Vader his real name is Anakin Skywalker but when he became evil everyone start calling him Darth Vader. So i think that everyone just start calling him Voldermort because he be came very evil

Matt

HelterSkelter March 23rd, 2007 9:59 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
ah true, true

MrSleepyHead March 23rd, 2007 10:00 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Tom Riddle only revealed his nickname of 'Lord Voldemort' to his closest 'friends.' Therefore, none but his followers (at school) would know that the innocent, brilliant Tom Riddle was, in fact, the ruthless Lord Voldemort. Dumbledore obviously had sources of information from which he could gather certain things. He most likely recognized Voldemort's deeds/magic as incredibly similar to Tom Riddle's (remember - Dumbledore "knows his style"). Therefore, Dumbledore could put two and two together. However, very few others would be able to do so.

Why did Dumbledore not inform the wizarding community of Voldemort's true identity? Firstly, it would be futile, considering the wizarding community could do nothing better to defend against Tom Riddle as they could Voldemort. There is nothing that the Ministry could do, and knowing his true identity would only cause resentment. Therefore, instead of sidetracking the Ministry and teachers, Dumbledore did not reveal his true identity, which allowed the battle against Voldemort to continue. Also, as others have said, calling Voldemort 'Tom Riddle' would simply anger him more. Thus, Dumbledore would be endangering the wizarding population if he revealed Voldemort's identity.

gorgonfatlop March 23rd, 2007 10:01 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Some people knew about "Tom Riddle' but if you didn't meet him or hear about him until after his schooling, you knew of him as Voldemort. No one knew him before, because he lived in a muggle orphinage, and during the summer he lived there also. So really the only people who would have ever known him as Tom Riddle would be teacher, staff and any employees in the little time after his schooling.

couturelove57 March 23rd, 2007 10:35 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Those who knew him as Tom Riddle didn't want to be known because of what he became. I think they were afraid of what others would think of when they found out that they had some association with him. And those who knew him as only of Voldemort aka He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named where too afraid of him to care about his background. As we found out in Half-Blood Prince, Dumbledore is the only one who ever researched Voldemort's background.

RemusLupinFan March 23rd, 2007 10:47 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
I agree with ModernInkling that Tom Riddle likely tried to get rid of anything that would link his old life with his new one as Lord Voldemort. We are told that Riddle disappeared for a number of years and underwent so many transformations that he was not recognizable as Tom Riddle anymore. And since only told his new name to a select few "friends" who were likely his strongest supporters, not many people would have made the connection between Riddle and Voldemort.

xhanax315 March 23rd, 2007 10:50 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Maybe people had forgotten about Tom, and he was just in the back of their minds. People would never have expected Voldy to be him, so they didn't assume it.

Lupin_Luver March 23rd, 2007 10:53 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Him being Tom Riddle wasn't exactually important information anyways. It only became important when it was revelant to the books like CoS and HBP. Other than that, it didn't really have a significance.

Wizard_waker March 24th, 2007 4:22 am

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
I think most people knew him as Tom Riddle but those who were in his inner circle where the only ones who knew him as Lord Voldemort. So since he told so few people of his altar ego they would never guess it was him.

gryfindors_heir March 24th, 2007 4:31 am

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wizard_waker (Post 4407616)
I think most people knew him as Tom Riddle but those who were in his inner circle where the only ones who knew him as Lord Voldemort. So since he told so few people of his altar ego they would never guess it was him.

Also, he underwent quite a few physical changes as well, rendering him unrecognizable. That would also add to why most people didn't put two and two together.

LeiaShadow March 24th, 2007 7:34 am

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
because once he was Voldemort, he was so scary nobody wanted to talk about him! Remember what Ron said, in HBP--something along the lines of "scary thought, the boy You-Know-Who"--I'm sure more people than him would be eager to just forget about the guy completely.

Saint_Potter March 24th, 2007 8:01 am

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Yes, I don't think Tom really wanted to draw attention to the fact he was studying the Dark Arts so intensely, I don't think the MoM would have been too keen to all that. Plus considering he hated his muggle father's name, it would make sense that he would do everything he could to erase the name "Tom Riddle" out of the minds of everyone. He probably aimed to make his old persona of "Tom Riddle" fall off the face of the earth. He changes his name to Voldemort, he disappears for a long time, undergoing dark transformations, and so on. How many years was it that Tom was gone anyway?

taupimu March 24th, 2007 12:39 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Dumbledore taught Tom Riddle and was aware of the "nickname" he was using while he was in school. That name was the name he prefer once he was away from school.

I think that Tom Riddle required his Death Eaters to use the prefered title when addressing him and shortly his real name just went out of use. Once it went out of use, people would lose track of what his real name was. Once he started making Horcruxes, his physical appearance also changed. So if the people knew Tom Riddle, they would not recognize his physical appearance any more.

rigdoctorbri March 24th, 2007 12:53 pm

Re: Why was Voldemort's true identity as Tom Riddle not common knowledge?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by RemusLupinFan (Post 4407027)
I agree with ModernInkling that Tom Riddle likely tried to get rid of anything that would link his old life with his new one as Lord Voldemort. We are told that Riddle disappeared for a number of years and underwent so many transformations that he was not recognizable as Tom Riddle anymore. And since only told his new name to a select few "friends" who were likely his strongest supporters, not many people would have made the connection between Riddle and Voldemort.

Valid point. I agree he would have wanted to sweep as much of his old self away. But, therein lays his weakness. One of the most powerful things one can have possession of over another person is their true name. Obviously Voldemort felt his name to be a weakness, so would it not have stood to reason that the general populous knowing and using the name Tom Riddle would have been advantageous?

Hermione quoted Dumbledore by saying "Fear of a name only increases fear of the thing itself." So, by that reasoning, if Dumbledore just kept it to himself that Voldemort's real name was Tom Riddle, then he actually helped Volde grow in power.

Quote:

Originally Posted by MrSleepyHead (Post 4406921)
Why did Dumbledore not inform the wizarding community of Voldemort's true identity? Firstly, it would be futile, considering the wizarding community could do nothing better to defend against Tom Riddle as they could Voldemort. There is nothing that the Ministry could do, and knowing his true identity would only cause resentment. Therefore, instead of sidetracking the Ministry and teachers, Dumbledore did not reveal his true identity, which allowed the battle against Voldemort to continue. Also, as others have said, calling Voldemort 'Tom Riddle' would simply anger him more. Thus, Dumbledore would be endangering the wizarding population if he revealed Voldemort's identity.

That is also a good point. What could people have done about it, knowing his true identity?

Well, as you pointed out it may have enraged Voldemort. Pride can be a great weakness, and a powerful enemy. By using that common muggle name it could have gone either way, perhaps. It could have caused more violence, or it could have forced Voldemort into doing something stupid.

That could wind up being a powerful weapon in DH. The true identity of Voldemort?


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