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Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix



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  #1  
Old March 30th, 2007, 6:09 am
navygreen  Female.gif navygreen is offline
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Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Discussion for Spinner's End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix by Lady Lupin.


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  #2  
Old March 30th, 2007, 1:43 pm
N_H  Undisclosed.gif N_H is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Dear Lady Lupin,

certainly the similarities between Fawkes and Snape are most intriguing. Therefore, thanks for this great editorial, insightful as always.

For some time I have pondered what Fawkes could really stand for. What has loyalty got to do with healing and protection? In CoS Fawkes's arrival and music "made [Harry's] heart feel as though it was swelling to twice its normal size. Then, as the music reached such a pitch that Harry felt it vibrating inside his own ribs, flames erupted at the top of the nearest pillar." So here we have got a connection between loyalty, the heart (i.e. love), fire and the phoenix in only two sentences. In an abstract sense we might hypothesise that loyalty doubles one's love force in the face of evil. Understanding that a phoenix stands for the magical effects of loyalty, we could even assume that loyalty or more likely a strong love force can heal the body. If this were true, then Snape's ability to heal indicates that he is very loyal to someone who has a heart -- probably to Dumbledore or even Harry, perhaps to Narcissa, but certainly not to Voldemort who lacks love and does not open nor give away his heart.

I also have got the impression that the shape of a Patronus can (although it need not) mirror the person to whom one deeply opens the heart. You alluded to that in your editorial: Harry is attached to his father, Tonks to Lupin. If this observation were correct, Snape's Patronus would, as you said, represent his greatest loyalty in an animal form, which could be a phoenix in Dumbledore's case.

What do you reckon fire has got to do with all that? Both tears and fire appear in CoS. Fawkes's tears heal the body of loyal Harry. In PS/SS Harry's "fire" burns Quirrell and thus Harry's enemy's body. Is there a connection as well? Does the fact that Snape can heal both Draco and Dumbledore with song say something about his loyalties?

And does it make any sense what I write? I am confused, complex topic. Anyways, thanks again for your lovely editorial!

Kind regards,


N_H


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  #3  
Old March 30th, 2007, 5:04 pm
dmz  Female.gif dmz is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Great editorial, as usual, Lady Lupin! Your thought on why DD trusts Snape makes a lot of sense -- doing the Fawkes test could be a lot easier and more reliable than trying to make judgements based on past actions.

As for why we don't see Snape's boggart, I would think that most people would not want to reveal their boggart. It would make them quite vulnerable. For example, I'm pretty sure that my own boggart would be either a spider, or a hypodermic needle, or, heaven forbid, a spider HOLDING a hypodermic needle. I just need one person to find this out and he or she could easily torment me by strategically placing a spider or hypodermic needle (I doubt they could get a spider to hold a hypodermic needle) in my office, at home, etc. The boggarts of a bunch of 12-year olds are probably relatively innocuous (as boggarts go), but the boggart of an adult is probably pretty deeply-seated and could reveal WAY too much about their psyche to let it out in public. I wonder if any of the professors would risk letting that info out. Students can be pretty vindictive.

With that, keep the great editorials coming. And please, don't any of you send me a spider and/or hypodermic needle!


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Old March 30th, 2007, 5:13 pm
HP_hedgehog  Male.gif HP_hedgehog is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Lady Lupin,

It's been a while since I last e-mailed you and, seeing as your inbox seems to be about to explode, I won't. Anyway, I immediately got your point after reading the first paragraph and it is most certainly intriguing! It is true that Snape has always avoided both showing his boggart and Patronus and it might be important. But how could it be important? I think you have presented us one of the more likely possibilities

I thought there was another passage somewhere... I think it's the passage where Harry asks Dumbledore again about why he trusts Snape, in HBP. Dumbledore opens his mouth, as though he is trying to decide whether to divulge or not. I think that's the point where Fawkes squawks as well and Dumbledore chooses not to divulge. I might be getting things mixed-up though.

And concerning your letter to Jo...
Jo, if you ever read this (which I consider unlikely but you never know), I'd like you to know that I fully agree with what Lady Lupin stated. There are few people who I admire, but you are one of those very few. I was also touched by your diary entry of February the 6th, because you spoke so openly. I can only vaguely imagine how you must feel, but it must be both very hard and satisfying at the same time.



Oh, and Lady Lupin, I don't think you've finally gone insane. (Or maybe we both have.) It's just hard to figure out new things and sometimes, after the 20th re-read, one starts connecting things that are not to be connected and completely coincidental - or maybe they're not.

Great editorial!

Kind regards,

HP_hedgehog


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Old March 30th, 2007, 5:16 pm
Mischief_Maker  Female.gif Mischief_Maker is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Great Editorial Lady Lupin!

I really apreciate all the work you put into your editorials.

After much thought I tend to agree that Snape is closer to the good side than the bad, although I do believe he has his own agenda. Being a Slytherin he wants to cover his tushie as best he can.

I also agree with DMZ who wrote "As for why we don't see Snape's boggart, I would think that most people would not want to reveal their boggart. It would make them quite vulnerable".

I know that I would not want anyone to know what my boggart would be simply because it could be used against me. My boggart would be akin to Mrs. Weasley's boggart that kept changing to loved one's dead. Of course my true friends probably would know what my boggart would be, but considering the fact that I don't believe that Snape has any close friends I feel like he is mearly keeping his cards close, so to speak.

But once again, great editorial and I eagerly await your next one!


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Old March 30th, 2007, 5:36 pm
Hedwig_June  Undisclosed.gif Hedwig_June is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

*applauds* Do you know, I had noticed some of the that similarities you pointed out before. I did strike me as odd that Snape's healing spell sounded like a song, and therefore connection to a phoenix, if not the phoenix.

I had an idea in my head a while back (from a fanfic, I believe), that the only character in the entire series who had the ability to prove Snape's true loyalty was, indeed, Fawkes. A picture speaks a thousand words, right? Wouldn't the image of Fawkes landing on Snape's shoulder, just as he has done to Harry and Dumbledore, convince you of where Snape's loyalties lie?

In fact, I don't think it is all that "preposturous" to think that Snape and Fawkes are one and the same. Didn't most of us agree that if Dumbledore didn't want to be killed by Snape, he would've summoned Fawkes to save him, just as the phoenix had swallowed the jet of green light from Voldemort in the Ministry of Magic? Why, then, did he not summon Fawkes to help heal him right away? Unless, of course, that is [i]exactly[i] what Dumbledore did....oh, Jo, how you confound us!

Thank you so much for yet another lovely essay, Lady Lupin! Your editorials are my favorite, by far!


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  #7  
Old March 30th, 2007, 5:39 pm
SwoopingBat  Undisclosed.gif SwoopingBat is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

It's an interesting idea, but I see one problem: after Harry is captured by Umbridge in OOTP and shouts to Snape "he's got Padfoot at the place where it's hidden," we learn from Dumbledore that Snape immediately went to check whether or not Sirius was still at Grimmauld Place. It's at this time that Dumbledore makes the comment about the Order having "more reliable methods of communicating than the fire in Dolores Umbridge's office." We learn from the FAQ section on Jo's website, and in the beginning of HBP, that the Order's method of communicating is through their Patronuses. So it seems highly unlikely to me that the Order HAVEN'T seen Snape's Patronus. This doesn't mean Snape doesn't have a connection to the Phoenix, or even necessarily that his Patronus isn't a Phoenix, but I do believe the Order have seen his Patronus, whatever it is.


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Old March 30th, 2007, 5:43 pm
HP_hedgehog  Male.gif HP_hedgehog is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Well, I think there can be only so much plot twists as to who's an (unregistred) animagus... so I think that Snape=Fawkes goes a bit too far. Also, this would imply that Snape can't be killed by an Avada Kedavra, in Animagus form. If he burns and is reborn all the time (also like in CoS), why don't we see any discrepancies with the human Snape? No... I think this is not the case.


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  #9  
Old March 30th, 2007, 6:12 pm
Emmasj  Female.gif Emmasj is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

*falls over* That is genius. I love this theory!

I highly doubt that Snape is Fawkes, and I'm also pretty sure that the Order has seen Snape's patronus, like SwoopingBat pointed out. But if Fawkes trusts Snape . . .

Great job, Lady Lupin!


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  #10  
Old March 30th, 2007, 6:15 pm
Tic_Tac_Toe  Female.gif Tic_Tac_Toe is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

I was impressed, it sounds like a perfectly plausible theory!

Now we'll only have to wait for probably the *entire* book before Harry thinks to check in with Fawkes' opinion!


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Old March 30th, 2007, 7:06 pm
Kgaladriel  Female.gif Kgaladriel is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Hi Lady Lupin,

thanks for the good editorial.

For a while I had unanswered questions about why did Fawkes never appear on the side of Dumbledore when he was so much in need of his help?
Was the bird on a special mission and would not have made it on time to help Dumbledore or was the curse of the green portion cast in such a way that only a human “healer” if possible at all would have managed to help Dumbledore?

Or maybe it was just an unlucky after effect of the potion that Dumbledore even forgot to call his Phoenix to his help. Anything is possible as we do not know what precisely Phoenix’s tears can and cannot heal.
When Fawkes healed Harry, his tears worked as an antidote to the venom of a dark creature and this might have been inside his range of healing abilities.
We may learn more about that in book7. But it is unlikely that Fawkes would have helped Dumbledore in OOTP (in his battle with Lord Voldemort) should the killing spell have hit him. Not even Phoenix’s tears can awaken the dead.

Now to Snape's healing abilities.
Dumbledore himself told Harry in HBP that Professor Snape knew much more about he Dark Arts than Madam Pomfrey knows (and probably will ever know). I believe Snape had to learn the skill of healing the Dark Arts induced injuries and wounds as a necessary part of his repertoire of weapons and anti weapons for his Death Eater career and even from before as he seems to really be obsessed with “defense against the Dark Arts” and as a perpetual survivor he must have acquired the skill at some point to protect himself.

The question is would Dumbledore have survived even if he had got Snape’s help upon his arrival back in Hogsmead? For all we know the green potion might have been designed so that the drinker would die anyway, just not immediately.

As for Snape’s Patronus and Boggart, what could they possibly reveal to us?
A boggart embodies the worst fear of somebody, so what could Snape’s worst fear be? Lord Voldemort himself, for instance…

I don’t think Snape’s patronus would be a Phoenix. If we believe J. K. Rowling’s own words, Snape is horrible. Maybe he acted upon Dumbledore’s orders when he finished him off and maybe he simply didn’t have any other option in that moment when he Avada Kedavra-ed him, simply because he recognized that Dumbledore’s life was reaching its end anyway and he surely had to save his own a**. Another possibility (plot twist) is that Snape will redeem himself in some sort of way in the end but maybe not for the reasons we think...

What is certain in the other hand is that Snape is much more skilled than we ever thought him to be before HBP.
I believe that even though Snape never had the great looks of Tom Riddle (to charm people around him and be admired) he certainly is a wizard of a certain caliber (which puts him almost in the same league as Dumbledore himself and Lord Voldemort) despite the fact that he doesn’t wear his considerable magical powers and talents for everybody to see; again a sign of his secretive nature, most useful if you want to be a spy and survive. Snape is not stupid to go for a lost fight against Voldemort for the obvious reasons (Voldemort’s immortality)…

In the light of this thought about his considerable magical talents I won’t put it past him that he is quite able to change the shape of his Patronus at will to suit a specific image with the Order and perhaps he fights off Dementors in a different way which explains Harry disagreeing with him in the essay on how to fight off dementors (HBP). Here you might think that I am really determined to dislike Snape like Lupin told Harry in HBP but I am just being realistic about him until I see proof to the contrary. And yet, despite all the evidence to Snape's treachery in HBP, I am still expecting some kind of plot twist to use him in a way or another to serve Harry's cause . Snape might discover he has a heart after all...

Snape could have chosen to go into hiding to another country after he left Voldemort or even fake his own death like Wormtail did successfully for 12 years but he stayed and why, I am asking???

Maybe Dumbledore's iron-clad reason to trust Snape was a secret which consisted in helping Snape hide a dear person from Voldemort's vengeful eyes and Snape is afraid the Dark Lord would end up finding out about it one day and would take revenge in terrible ways ...

Just some thoughts. I hope you guys will come up with some good theories after the Deathly Hallows cover release!


Karima


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  #12  
Old March 30th, 2007, 7:17 pm
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

I agree with the poster who said that the Order probably knows what Snape's patronus looks like. And Snape also pointed out to Harry that a patronus can change, like Tonk's did. Snape's loyalty is questionable. He was once loyal to Voldemort, then he switched sides. Voldemort still thinks he is loyal to him. Dumbledore thought he was loyal to him. This ambiguity is what makes me think that Snape would not have a phoenix as a patronus.


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Old March 30th, 2007, 7:56 pm
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

There was a theory posted a while back that proposed Snape was Fawkes but I agree with you: thats taking it too far. But I agree that Fawkes' assessment of Snape's loyalty may prove to be the key to Dumbledore's trust in Snape. Great ideas!


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Old March 30th, 2007, 9:16 pm
halo2  Undisclosed.gif halo2 is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Hasn't it been said that no two people can share the same Patronus? JK Rowling said it herself on her website that a patronus in unique to the individual who conjured it. And Fawkes is Snape? That is ridiculous.



But I believe if Fawkes did trust Snape I suppose that would be an ironclad reason. Very simple, proven with Harry and very possible.


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Old March 30th, 2007, 9:42 pm
yappa1  Undisclosed.gif yappa1 is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

I like your chain of thought about patoronus and boggart but a patronus requires great happiness and is or was Snape ever happy. If you change the patronus to Lily and the Boggart to Lily dying, I could easily agree with you. Dumbledore would easily recognize Lily and know his deepest regret. Others in the order would also recognize her so it would be a secret to them also.


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Old March 30th, 2007, 9:44 pm
machiavelle  Female.gif machiavelle is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Hello!! I said quite a while back on the forums that Harry would find Snape, and Fawkes would be with him! When everyone was asking where did Fawkes go? To Snape, of course! This is the only way Harry is going to trust Snape. Of course no one believed me! Thanks LL for making me feel like I'm not a nutcase!


I also think Harry will need a potion (only Snape can make) to get to/through/backfrom/ the Deathly Hallows. (if it is a place, and not objects). If they are objects, like the celtic sacred hallows then Harry may need that potion to get to were they are hidden.

Since DD is no longer, Harry would only drink something from Snapes hands if Fawkes delivers it. I personally think that is what you are seeing on US book cover. The coloring is: red lettering, golden sky- very Gryffindor/Fawkesish. Harrry is reaching/releasing. Voldemort is reaching, but looks fearful. Snakes (LV looks almost completely snakelike on cover) are terrified of birds(phoenixes) HMMM? But he looks almost like he wants to touch it. His wand has one of Fawkes feathers. HMMM? I don't see their wands.

Anyway, I digress. Harry will see Snape and Fawkes together, and finally have to get it. (unless, of course, he thinks Snape bewitched the bird, AARRGGGGHHH!) I must stop now, Endless possibilities, can make you crazy!

I very much agree with Yappa that Lily could be Snape's patronus ( can you have another person as your patronus?), and of course he would hide it. DD talks about Snape's "great personal sacrifice" and I have always believed it was Snape's hand in the death of the woman he loved. (poor Harry is gonna have a real tough time with that revelation!) Basta! I could go on forever!



Last edited by machiavelle; March 30th, 2007 at 11:06 pm.
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Old March 30th, 2007, 10:19 pm
lunyluna  Female.gif lunyluna is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

I agree that Snape could not be Fawkes-Too complicated. I don't think it's likly that Snapes patronus is a pheonix either, i think that each one is unique to whomever conjured it.

Could Snapes patronus have changed after he joined the order? Could his new patronus have been another confirmation for Dumbledore that Snape was good? I dont think that Snape's patronus is Lily though, because we havent seen anyone with a "human" patronus. I think if that was possible then Harry's just would have been James and Tonks would have been Lupin. However it could be something that represents Lily....

I do think its possible that Fawkes will help Harry trust Snape but If Fawkes went with Snape after Dumbledore died wouldn't that be a dead giveaway to Voldemort that Snape was good?


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Old March 30th, 2007, 10:58 pm
TKoko  Male.gif TKoko is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Great stuff. It is a stranger idea though but hey, anything is possible.


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Old March 30th, 2007, 11:10 pm
machiavelle  Female.gif machiavelle is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

I think you are right, luyluna, I don't think patronuses (sp) can be people, for the very reasons you mentioned. Could Snape have taken Lilly's patronus. Do we know her patronus? I think JK mentioned it, but I can't think of it?


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Old March 30th, 2007, 11:14 pm
Trismegistus  Male.gif Trismegistus is offline
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Re: Spinners End #24 - The Unlikely Phoenix

Thank you, Lady Lupin, for another intriguing editorial. I wish to comment--my inaugural comment since breaking down and finally joining the CoS forums--on what I viewed as the two most troubling points of your argument.

The first is the spell Snape used to heal Draco that Harry thought sounded song-like. When I first read this passage, I immediately thought back to PS/SS and Professor Flitwick's class teaching the Levitation Charm. Hermione (rightly) chastizes Ron for mispronouncing the incantation. Specifically, Ron was using the wrong emphasis. If you will, examine the translation of this scene from the book to the movie. Emma Watson as Hermione recites Wingardium Leviosa with a specific emphasis and corresponding timing. I do not think it is too much of a step to describe 'incantating' as having both beat/rhythm and meter. (How Emma Watson pronounces Alohamora in the first movie collaborates this, though I admit by the dueling club scene in the second movie and certainly by Harry's Patronus Charm lessons and astounding success in the third movie, yelling the correct words sufficed. But, I digress...)

On this basis, then, it is quite likely that Snape's incantation to repair Harry's flailing Sectumsempra is song-like because it is so precisely chant-like. For an example of this, observe how Conservative or Modern Orthodox Jews recite the Torah or Muslims recite the Qu'ran. It is a distinctive chanting, or chant-like, style that while not singing has because of its meter and rhythm a song-like quality. (Certain traditional or 'High Church' priests in Roman Catholicism have a similar practice as they recite the prayers of the Eucharistic Rite in a chant. Again, it is a cappella.)

Therefore, it is a stretch (in the sense that it is not supported by canon) to equate Snape's incantation with phoenix song so directly and firmly. As an aside, I think it is highly likely that Snape's and Dumbledore's healing incantations were the same. I cannot remember one instance off the top of my head where Dumbledore actually recited an incantation, and there is likely to be only so many (i.e., likely one, at most 2) healing spells that "re-zip" slashed skin.

The second point is the basis for Harry's disagreement with Snape on how to fight dementors. I find it highly unlikely that Snape suggested something other than a patronus. Lady Lupin, you are definitely right to believe that Snape's patronus and boggart could be telling, but if Snape wanted to avoid showing his Patronus, he had options. The most obvious option is Harry--or as he would likely assume Hermione because, well, she is Hermione, the "insufferable know-it-all." Harry's ability to do a 'corporeal patronus' is common knowledge around Hogwarts. For that matter, it is likely now that Umbridge is gone that in Harry's 6th year the faculty were both aware of Dumbledore's Army and aware of many of its members. Harry quickly realized that a good number of his DADA class included DA alumni. Thus, Snape could have made some student complete the presentation taking particular joy in making it as difficult as possible for any non-Slytherins to be able to conjure a particularly happy thought. The hope to needle such a student on this account is certainly within Snape's character whether or not he had a reason to conceal the shape of his Patronus. If the student succeeded, Snape would do to him/her as he did to Tonks and deride the person for the shape of his/her Patronus. (Just imagine what snide remark he'd make about Hermione's, for example.)

So, if I do not accept Lady Lupin's analysis, then what do I suggest? The obvious answer is how to utilize the Patronus. I see two points open for interpretation, the second being the firmer. First, there could be times when a non-corporeal Patronus can be beneficial. That is, you do not always need to conjure a corporeal Patronus. This is because you only need brief space in order to escape or simply more properly conjure a corporeal Patronus. Apparition is an effective strategywhen being attacked, and it only takes a split second. Sometimes, you only need an inch. (As to who supported what position, I do not know, and I don't think it matters.) My second point is the thought used to conjure the Patronus. We have canonical evidence that Harry uses different thoughts at different times. Perhaps Snape recommends picking one thought and sticking with it, perhaps so that you will always have it ready for recall. Fishing around for a memory wastes precious seconds when battling a creature that diminishes a wizard's or witch's ability to think and do magic.

It does not matter which one you accept. The important is that there are good pedagogical, theoretical, or plain old mean reasons for Snape both to avoid showing his Patronus to a class and for Snape and Harry to disagree that do not require Lady Lupin's 'conspiracy theory,' so to speak.

That Snape's Patronus and/or boggart proved very telling to Dumbledore is possible, though I also question something as obvious as a phoenix. Ostensibly, Snape would contact other Order members likely sending messages straight to headquarters, which is likely always manned, than continually tracking Dumbledore down.

Thank you,
The Thrice-Great


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