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Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis



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  #41  
Old February 10th, 2007, 10:03 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

Well, it does say that they married their cousins, and presumidly wouldn't be scared enough to go the full mile.

What i want to know is why they didn't marry into the Blacks when they were declining?


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  #42  
Old February 10th, 2007, 10:17 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

Possible the Gaunts considered the Blacks parvenus... Or more likely - the Gaunts had declined to such an extent that the Blacks did not even know they existed.


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  #43  
Old February 10th, 2007, 10:18 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by jammi567 View Post
Well, it does say that they married their cousins, and presumidly wouldn't be scared enough to go the full mile.

What i want to know is why they didn't marry into the Blacks when they were declining?
Haha, I could see the Black's thinking they were too good to marry such people. Even if they were heir to Slytherin.


Nessy, you make a good point. I could see that actually. Marvolo is the type to want to keep the blood "pure"


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Old February 10th, 2007, 10:29 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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2. Falling in love with Tom Riddle Sr proved to be a decisive event in Merope’s life. Via a love potion she manages to "trick" Riddle Sr into marrying her. Later when she is pregnant, she stops feeding him love potion. What could be the reason for stopping with the potion?
I've always assumed that being loved by someone under compulsion doesn't prove as satisfying as she had hoped, and she needs to know he loves her through his own choice to have any self-esteem.

Interestingly, I just noticed on re-reading CoS that young Tom Riddle gives another reason why his father left his mother - he believes that TR Snr left Merope "just because he found out she was a witch", not because of the potion being stopped. It is, of course, probable, that he either didn't know about the potion or is deliberately putting a different spin on the story to make him and his mother seem more like victims. But it did make me wonder if there's more to the story than DD has told us.


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  #45  
Old February 10th, 2007, 11:59 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

Interesting. But i think it's because she stops the potion because she just wanted a child with the man, but stays with him until he realizes that she is a witch (maybe she tells him herself?).

hope that came out okay.


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  #46  
Old February 11th, 2007, 10:19 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

1. Merope was called a squib by her father Marvolo. Do you think that she might have been a real squib or did her father just called her this name as a form of mental abuse?
I don't believe she was a Squib. I believe that she was so afraid of her father and brother, that she was too nervous to be able to perform a decent piece of magic.
2. Falling in love with Tom Riddle Sr proved to be a decisive event in Merope’s life. Via a love potion she manages to "trick" Riddle Sr into marrying her. Later when she is pregnant, she stops feeding him love potion. What could be the reason for stopping with the potion?
Personally, I think she felt guilty. I think that she realised that tricking him to be in love with her was the wrong thing to do, and perhaps she hoped that he would stay with her as they were already married and she was carrying his child.

3. Riddle Sr abandons Merope and she moves to London. Being poor forces her to sell Slytherin's Locket for 10 galleons. She needs the money, but why doesn’t she use magic to provide for food?
We saw in HBP the effect unrequited or forbidden love can have on a person when Tonks was unable to be with Remus. I think Merope was going through the very same thing. She was so unhappy that the man she loved was no longer with her, she just didn't have the strength to use magic. It's also possible that she didn't want to use magic, as that was part of the reason Tom Riddle Snr wanted no more to do with her. Maybe she just wanted to be a Muggle.

4. After arriving on the doorstep of the Muggle orphanage Merope dies shortly after giving birth to Tom Riddle Jr. Why does she make the choice to die instead of using her magical abilities to save herself and be a mother to her baby?
See above for the reasons! Also, I believe that after years of abuse from her father, she thought that she wasn't good enough to look after her child. She had had it drummed into her so often that she was useless, she probably thought the baby would be better off without her.

5. Merope herself was raised in a family that hated 'Mud bloods' and believed in the supremacy of 'Pure bloods'. If she had survived giving birth to her son, would she have raised him in a different way then she has been raised herself?
I think so. She fell in love with a Muggle, and he became the father of her child. If anything, I think she would have tried to raise him without magic at all.
6. Could Merope have prevented Voldemort from becoming the most feared wizard alive, if she had lived and loved him?
I don't think so. Perhaps he may not have been quite as evil, but from what we found out about young Voldemort, it seemed he had sadistic tendencies from a very young age. I'm not sure that Merope's love would have been enough to completely rid him of that.
7. To conclude, what is your opinion on Merope's character?I think she was a very innocent, badly treated young woman who never had a hope of having a decent life with her father and brother around, knocking her down at every opportunity.


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  #47  
Old February 11th, 2007, 10:29 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Melaszka View Post
I've always assumed that being loved by someone under compulsion doesn't prove as satisfying as she had hoped, and she needs to know he loves her through his own choice to have any self-esteem.
That was my first impression as well. I've considered that it is a combination though of her not only finding the manufactured love unfulfilling, but also her growing to feel some level of genuine love towards Tom, Sr. and therefore respecting him enough not to want to take away his free will any longer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melaszka
Interestingly, I just noticed on re-reading CoS that young Tom Riddle gives another reason why his father left his mother - he believes that TR Snr left Merope "just because he found out she was a witch", not because of the potion being stopped. It is, of course, probable, that he either didn't know about the potion or is deliberately putting a different spin on the story to make him and his mother seem more like victims. But it did make me wonder if there's more to the story than DD has told us.
This is a really interesting question. Of course Tom, Jr. could have given only a partial answer there. Tom, Sr. probably realized she was a witch and that he'd been bewitched at the same time, so it's rather tied together I would think. I've always assumed that since Tom, Jr. was so interested in finding out about his father while at Hogwarts, that he would have probably heard much of the same information that Dumbledore did when he went to the village to investigate.


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  #48  
Old February 13th, 2007, 9:48 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by HagathaChristie View Post
That was my first impression as well. I've considered that it is a combination though of her not only finding the manufactured love unfulfilling, but also her growing to feel some level of genuine love towards Tom, Sr. and therefore respecting him enough not to want to take away his free will any longer?
Yes, I like that idea. That also makes her abandonment of young Tom more understandable - she spent her whole childhood being forced to meet others' needs, with no-one putting her needs first, then as an adult the one time in her life she made a selfless decision it rebounded on her, so would she be too scared to ever put someone else first again.

Quote:
I've always assumed that since Tom, Jr. was so interested in finding out about his father while at Hogwarts, that he would have probably heard much of the same information that Dumbledore did when he went to the village to investigate.
I'd always assumed that, too, but actually I don't think there's any evidence that he went to Little Hangleton until after he left Hogwarts, when he went to kill his family. He probably wouldn't have had any information about the muggle Riddles from the wizard world, so it's possible that at the age of 16 all he knew about his parents is what the orphanage and DD had told him. But, in that case, how did he know that his father left his mother because she was a witch? It's all a bit of a puzzle.

More things that puzzle me: the old chestnut of why Merope left her son with Muggles, not wizards. Is there some magical protection in being raised by Muggles that we don't know about, which could link in with why Harry was left with the Dursleys (and why house elves and people who care about Harry seem to want him expelled from Hogwartsand sent back to the Muggle world).

And are we absolutely, completely certain that Merope is definitely dead. I need to re-read HBP to check, but I seem to remember that being left as a bit of an assumption.


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  #49  
Old February 13th, 2007, 11:32 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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But, in that case, how did he know that his father left his mother because she was a witch?
I think his Uncle, Morfin Guant told him about the fact that his father had left his mother, I mean he lived right across the Riddle House and therefore he would obviously have noticed that the muggle, Voldemort's father had returned. Dumbledore knew all this and we know that he had interrogated Morfin, so I think it would be safe to assume that.

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Originally Posted by Melaszka View Post
More things that puzzle me: the old chestnut of why Merope left her son with Muggles, not wizards. Is there some magical protection in being raised by Muggles that we don't know about, which could link in with why Harry was left with the Dursleys (and why house elves and people who care about Harry seem to want him expelled from Hogwartsand sent back to the Muggle world).
I don't think that there is any magical protection or something like that involved with Tom Riddle Jr. it is just a matter of coincidence that the house that Merope found for help turned out to be an orphanage, moreover who would have taken care of Tom Riddle, the Guants wouldn't have accepted him, and Merope had no other living relative, so I think it was her only choice to give birth to her child in an orphanage that could take care of him/her.

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And are we absolutely, completely certain that Merope is definitely dead. I need to re-read HBP to check, but I seem to remember that being left as a bit of an assumption.
Yeah, it is canon that she had died, Mrs Cole confirms that, though we don't have her speaking it to us directly, Dumbledore tells us about it in the lesson where he and Harry were discussing Voldemort's previous life.


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  #50  
Old February 14th, 2007, 7:31 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Melaszka View Post


I'd always assumed that, too, but actually I don't think there's any evidence that he went to Little Hangleton until after he left Hogwarts, when he went to kill his family. He probably wouldn't have had any information about the muggle Riddles from the wizard world, so it's possible that at the age of 16 all he knew about his parents is what the orphanage and DD had told him. But, in that case, how did he know that his father left his mother because she was a witch? It's all a bit of a puzzle.
Actually we know that he went to the village before he left Hogwarts, because in Slughorn's memory, Tom Riddle Jr. is wearing Morphin's ring.


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  #51  
Old February 15th, 2007, 10:52 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

1. Merope was called a squib by her father Marvolo. Do you think that she might have been a real squib or did her father just called her this name as a form of mental abuse?

I believe she, like many other, that she wasn't a squib. Yet, I think that she wasn't a very talented whitch and being poorly raised, plus haven't attended to school and of course being mistreated and despised, didn't help her developing her magical powers. So my conclution is that she wasn't very powerful but she wasn't a squib either.

2. Falling in love with Tom Riddle Sr proved to be a decisive event in Merope’s life. Via a love potion she manages to "trick" Riddle Sr into marrying her. Later when she is pregnant, she stops feeding him love potion. What could be the reason for stopping with the potion?

I believe that falling in love with a muggle was a significant event in her life. By this she proved to be different from everyone else in her family: she did not hate muggles (and mud-bloods), she was also able to love them, to fall in love with one of them.
Even though she got Riddle only with a potion she proved us to be a better person when she decided to stop fedding her husband with the love potion. She believe that he could come to love her. But she was wrong. She loved Riddle Sr. so much that she could not continue giving him the potion.

3. Riddle Sr abandons Merope and she moves to London. Being poor forces her to sell Slytherin's Locket for 10 galleons. She needs the money, but why doesn’t she use magic to provide for food?

I think she felt lost and confused. She wasn't well instructed on magic and all she had left was the locket. She was forced to sell it in order to live and to keep her baby alive as well.

4. After arriving on the doorstep of the Muggle orphanage Merope dies shortly after giving birth to Tom Riddle Jr. Why does she make the choice to die instead of using her magical abilities to save herself and be a mother to her baby?

I believe that she was exhausted of living. Life had given her nothing but disgrace. She used her every last streght to keep alive long enough to give birth. I think, as I stated before, that she wasn't powerful enough to use her magic to save herself and her baby, and she was too weak. I think she used every streght in her body and every magical power she had to save her child. Once she achieved that, she could peacely die.

5. Merope herself was raised in a family that hated 'Mud bloods' and believed in the supremacy of 'Pure bloods'. If she had survived giving birth to her son, would she have raised him in a different way then she has been raised herself?

I believe she would have raised him differently. Because she was different from her family. I would like to add now that I think she prefered her son to be raised with muggles in order to avoid the prejudcies that her own family would have imparted him. She chose to fall in love with a muggle and I think she wanted her son to be open minded about this. That's why I think she left him at the muggle arphanage. She would be away from his awful family and he wouldn't hate muggles because he would live with them.

6. Could Merope have prevented Voldemort from becoming the most feared wizard alive, if she had lived and loved him?

I don't think she could have. It was in Tom M. Riddle's nature to become what he became. Voldemort is what Tom Jr. really was. She didn't have the character to control the boy's evil. He was evil from within. Let's compare it with herself, even though she was raised with hatred she was good. So what makes us think that a Voldemort raised with love wouldn't be evil? I think being evil is who he is, and nothing in the world could have changed that.

7. To conclude, what is your opinion on Merope's character?

I think she was a brave woman, than even facing adversity tried to be happy. She couldn't find that happiness with her father, she couldn't find it with her brother and, she couldn't even find it with her husband. Every man in her life dispised her and rejected her and yet, she didn't hate them, she even named her own son after them. She couldn't live to enjoy her son but, she did live enough to forgive those who mistreated her, she did so by naming her only child, her only joy after the two men in her life who ment something to her: Tom Marvolo Riddle.
I think that by dying she could see her son as pure and good as she wanted him to be. If she had lived to see him become something worst than everyone else in her family, then she would have died regretful and sad. But in the way she actually died, I think she believed she was doing the best she could do, and she was happy to give up her life so that her son could have his.

^_^I just love this character and I think she was a great woman ^_^


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  #52  
Old February 15th, 2007, 11:17 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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I believe she, like many other, that she wasn't a squib. Yet, I think that she wasn't a very talented whitch and being poorly raised, plus haven't attended to school and of course being mistreated and despised, didn't help her developing her magical powers.
To add to that, I think that her abilities as a witch were kinnda suppressed due to fear of her father and brother, she was always nervous and scared and that is not a very good situation to perform magic, seeing that most spells require clear and concentrated mind.

2. Falling in love with Tom Riddle Sr proved to be a decisive event in Merope’s life. Via a love potion she manages to "trick" Riddle Sr into marrying her. Later when she is pregnant, she stops feeding him love potion. What could be the reason for stopping with the potion?


First of all I think that she was not exactly in love with Tom Riddle senior, she had this infatuation and she believed that he was a saviour for her, she wanted to escape the wrath of his father and brother and for that she needed a male to accompany her, and seeing the location in which she lived the only option was Tom Riddle Senior, a good looking, gentle guy, who wasn't as harsh as he was assumed to be. She was attracted to his personality and the rest of the trick was done by her urge to escape.

As for the reason why she stopped giving him love potion, that has been answered in the book by Dumbledore assumption that she thought that her love would have seduced Tom Riddle Sr. enough to make him stay with her.

3. Riddle Sr abandons Merope and she moves to London. Being poor forces her to sell Slytherin's Locket for 10 galleons. She needs the money, but why doesn’t she use magic to provide for food?


Dumbledore has answered that one as well, he says that the fact that her love had been unable to generate any emotion in Tom Sr. and she had the opinion that it was all because of the love potion she had used, she blamed the love potion for her failed love and therefore had started despising her magical abilities, therefore stayed away from using magic even for subsistence.

4. After arriving on the doorstep of the Muggle orphanage Merope dies shortly after giving birth to Tom Riddle Jr. Why does she make the choice to die instead of using her magical abilities to save herself and be a mother to her baby?


This shows her weakness of character, I think she acted as a loser and accepted what was easy, rather than what was right, this point of what is right and what is easy has been brought out in the book exceptionally well. I think she lost hope and decided that it would be better she gave her life. She might have viewed it as a sacrifice in order to justify it to herself but I don't think that it is justified in that way.

6. Could Merope have prevented Voldemort from becoming the most feared wizard alive, if she had lived and loved him?

Indeed, she could have prevented the formation of Lord Voldemort. Voldemort became what he became due to the fact that he couldn't stand that he the descendant of great Salazar Slytherin was treated in the way he was, he had great anger for his father, who left his mother, but had Merope lived she could have told him the truth and this would have reduced his hatred, then there was no place for love (which has been so prominently brought up in the series) in Tom Riddle Jr because he had never seen a living relative who could give him his share of love. Had Merope lived this would not have been the case....these are the few reasons why Merope's death lead to the formation of Lord Voldemort.


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  #53  
Old February 15th, 2007, 8:24 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

2. Falling in love with Tom Riddle Sr proved to be a decisive event in Merope’s life. Via a love potion she manages to "trick" Riddle Sr into marrying her. Later when she is pregnant, she stops feeding him love potion. What could be the reason for stopping with the potion? Personally, I believe Merope was a metamorphamagus and that is how she "tricked" TR Sr. It could have been her pregnancy that prevented her from morphing and that's why TR Sr. left her. If anyone would like to read more, here's the thread

Was Merope REALLY a metamorphmagus?

http://www.cosforums.com/showthread.php?t=99905


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Old February 15th, 2007, 9:32 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Personally, I believe Merope was a metamorphamagus and that is how she "tricked" TR Sr. It could have been her pregnancy that prevented her from morphing and that's why TR Sr. left her. If anyone would like to read more, here's the thread
A metamorphamagus? They are very rare and we have never seen any signs of it. However we have read that Merope used a potion to trick Riddle Sr. Why would she have used that potion, if she could change her appearance at will, to capture Riddle's affection?


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  #55  
Old February 16th, 2007, 11:32 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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A metamorphamagus? They are very rare and we have never seen any signs of it. However we have read that Merope used a potion to trick Riddle Sr. Why would she have used that potion, if she could change her appearance at will, to capture Riddle's affection?
That's why she wouldn't use a potion. But I'm getting into the topic of another thread here, so here's the original thread

Was Merope REALLY a metamorphmagus?

http://www.cosforums.com/showthread.php?t=99905


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Old February 16th, 2007, 11:40 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by irmapince View Post
That's why she wouldn't use a potion. But I'm getting into the topic of another thread here, so here's the original thread

Was Merope REALLY a metamorphmagus?

http://www.cosforums.com/showthread.php?t=99905
Ehm this thread discusses everything about Merope Gaunt's character and what she has done in her life, therefore if you think she is a metamorphmagus and have canon to back it up, it's allowed to be discussed here. At least as far as I know.


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Old February 16th, 2007, 11:44 am
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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Ehm this thread discusses everything about Merope Gaunt's character and what she has done in her life, therefore if you think she is a metamorphmagus and have canon to back it up, it's allowed to be discussed here. At least as far as I know.
You misunderstand me! I would like to discuss it here as well, but since I started a thread on it elsewhere I don't want to upset the mod by discussing it here as well.


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  #58  
Old February 16th, 2007, 12:03 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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That's why she wouldn't use a potion.
But this doesn't make sense. Like HesHPfan said we have it black on white that Merope used Love Potion to attrack Riddle. There's really no need for potion if she had the possibility to change her look into an beautiful woman.


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Old February 16th, 2007, 2:12 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

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You misunderstand me! I would like to discuss it here as well, but since I started a thread on it elsewhere I don't want to upset the mod by discussing it here as well.
I think it okay to discuss it here, if not we will hear it

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Indeed, she could have prevented the formation of Lord Voldemort. Voldemort became what he became due to the fact that he couldn't stand that he the descendant of great Salazar Slytherin was treated in the way he was, he had great anger for his father, who left his mother, but had Merope lived she could have told him the truth and this would have reduced his hatred, then there was no place for love (which has been so prominently brought up in the series) in Tom Riddle Jr because he had never seen a living relative who could give him his share of love. Had Merope lived this would not have been the case....these are the few reasons why Merope's death lead to the formation of Lord Voldemort.
But don't you think that Voldemort has such a natural desire for power, that even if Merope had shown him love, the hunger for power would still have dominated every other emotion. Merope could have given him a sense of wrong and right. But I don't think she could have prevented him from becoming what he is now. Abused and mistreated childrenm are more vunerable to fall victim to crime, but even the most loved child can't always be saved by a loving mother. I am not saying that Merope's love would have been totally wasted, but I doubt that Voldemort would have turned out to become a normal wizard if she had lived.


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Last edited by Hes; February 16th, 2007 at 2:23 pm.
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Old February 16th, 2007, 2:51 pm
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Re: Merope Gaunt: Character Analysis

Erm, yes, as long as you can provide canon to back up a theory about a certain character there is not reason why you cannot discuss this theory in terms of character analysis.


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