The Meaning of the Prophecy

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The Meaning of the Prophecy

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 9:44 am

This topic serves as an archive of a thread from the Harry Potter Lexicon Forum as hosted on World Crossing, which ceased operation on April 15, 2011. It was copied/saved by Julia H. and reformatted/reposted by Potteraholic. ~Potteraholic


mrweasley - Jul 20, 2004 1:45 pm
Edited by Kip Carter Sep 26, 2007 4:34 am

J.K. Rowling recently posted a comment regarding Sybill Trelawney's first prophecy on her website, in which she stated that "both Madam Trelawney and I worded the prophecy extremely carefully and that is all I have to say on the subject."

This thread is meant to be for the linguistically enthusiastic who think they can figure out what this cunning construction of "eithers" and "neithers" is supposed to mean...

Here goes the prophecy again (OP, Ch. 37):

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ...
born to those who have thrice defied him,
born as the seventh month dies ...
and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal,
but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ...
and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ...




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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #1 to #30

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:16 am


Hoggy Warty Hogwarts - Jul 20, 2004 2:00 pm (#1 of 601)

A child will soon be born...

His parent's have either thwarted or escaped from him 3 times... (in the book, I believe it says they had narrowly escaped death three times.)

He will be born at the end of July...

He will be 'marked' by Voldemort... (The scar, transferring some of his powers to Harry)

Harry will have powers Voldemort does not know, understand, or possibly has overlooked... (makes a habit of overlooking things)

One of them must die, because of the other, for they cannot live truly while the other survives... (Voldemort living a cursed life?)

This of course is nothing new, this is how it was interpreted by me and the book, just restating the facts.


zelmia - Jul 20, 2004 7:04 pm (#2 of 601)

There is no antecedent in that last sentence. The last noun before the pronoun "either" is actually "power." Therefore, it might be that the last line translated is "and one power must be extinguished by the other power. For neither of these powers can co-exist."

It is also the beginning of the Prophecy: "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord..." If you look at it with emphasis on "power" rather than "the one" the meaning of the Prophecy changes quite dramatically.

So I'm going to take a stab and say that the last line doesn't refer to the people involved, but rather what they can actually do. This also helps to tie in the "Gleam of Triumph" as well.


Madame Librarian - Jul 20, 2004 8:08 pm (#3 of 601)

Hi, folks. I'm pasting a comment I made on the other prophecy thread. I think what I said is more pertinent to the HP prophecy rather than one on prophecies in general:

Madame Librarian "Specifics on Prophecies" 7/20/04 8:58pm

That's a link, but here's the text, too.

Just noticed an oddity about the prophecy that I hadn't before. The phrasing changes from present tense to past tense to present tense to future tense. Weird.

The first part says, "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches..." (it's happening now, folks, so present tense). Then we shift to future tense--"and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not..." Next we shift back to the present tense with "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives..." And finally, most dramatic of all to me is the shift back to future tense and the whole prophecy seems to repeat, but it's not really repeating--"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies...."

Given JKR's statement that the wording was planned very carefully, I have to believe that this shift in tenses is important. I can't, however, piece together a workable rationale for it. It sounds as if on the one hand Harry, or "the one" is already alive and kicking, but has not been marked yet. At the end, "the one" is yet to be born. Does this make any sense? Did I misread it? What do you think?

Note--perhaps this picking apart of the HP prophecy belongs on another thread. Is the Prophecy one still around? However, part of what I'm trying to point out is that the HP prophecy shares with many other prophecies the frustrating characteristic of ambiguous language. Ambiguous at first (and 100th) reading, but crystal clear when the story is played out. Very similar to those impossible riddles.

I'd also like to emphasize that the last bit of the prophecy "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..." is a teaser. I just realized (duh) that it's not a repeat loop of the beginning. It's totally different! It is not completed (the...'s) and it's impossible to tell what the rest of the wording might be. I think it's important that when we analyze the prophecy, we keep this in mind. I bring this up because the opening post that quoted the prophecy left this bit out.

Ciao. Barb


The Wandless Wizard - Jul 20, 2004 8:32 pm (#4 of 601)

Zelmia, Lord is actually the last noun before either, not power. The sentence also referred to the one with the power. Power is merely part of a prepositional phrase to describe the one. So either refers to one and Lord (Harry and Voldemort).

Barb, my reading of the prophecy is that it was given sometime between Harry's birth and nine months before Harry's birth. So the first sentence is in the present tense saying Harry approaches because he has been conceived already. So he is approaching his birth. This is the introductory line, telling who the prophecy is in regards to.

Then comes the descriptive part of the prophecy. This tells how you will know who this person the prophecy is in regards to is. It shifts to the future tense because these things have not happened yet. He will be born, he will be marked and he will have powers. He isn't born yet, so obviously he has no powers and cannot be marked.

The next part is the meat of the prophecy. It tells what must happen. I think it is actually in the imperative tense (if there is such a thing in English). It does not say either is dying (present tense) or either will die (future tense). It says either must die at some unknown point (imperative tense ?!?!). It is something that has to happen. So I am not sure what tense that is, but it is not really present as they are not currently dying.

Finally I agree that the final sentence is the most intriguing. It obviously shifts to future because Harry is not born yet. But why the need to repeat that information. The sentence is not a repeat but it does not contain any new information. So I believe all the tense shifts are understandable. The only thing I do not get is the reason for the last sentence.


schoff - Jul 20, 2004 8:44 pm (#5 of 601)

Okay, I'm not sure of the correct label for it (maybe one of our esteemed English teachers can tell me?)--and as long as we're getting into the semantics about it--but "power" is the main noun in that part of the Prophecy, not Lord. The sentence fragment (which is the second part of a compound sentence meaning it will stand alone) is about the power the one who approaches will have, and the Dark Lord does not know about this power.


S.E. Jones - Jul 20, 2004 8:45 pm (#6 of 601)

I read the entire thing in future tense. I read "approaches" as in "not here yet but coming" so that line could be argued as present. However, "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives..." I read as future. I read the "must" as a future qualifier. She could have just as easily said "will die" but to show the necessity of the fact that it must be by one or the other, "will" is changed to "must". Just the way I read it....


The Wandless Wizard - Jul 20, 2004 9:23 pm (#7 of 601)

I misread the sentence when discussing it in my last post. I still think he is the controlling noun. But even though English is my first language, I don't know the rules and labels that well. I'll leave the semantics up to the English majors out there. However, as political science/economics major and law school grad, I have some experience pulling intended meaning from badly written passages. Each is obviously referring to Harry and Voldemort. The whole prophecy sets the two up against each other. Harry has the power to defeat Voldemort. Harry's parents thrice defied Voldemort. Harry will be marked by Voldemort. Harry has powers Voldemort doesn't know. After those four sentences, it would not be logical to suddenly shift to a discussion of powers without clarifying that is what you are talking about. Even if it is not the correct grammatical interpretation, the natural assumption is that the next sentence continues the Harry and Voldemort motif.


Hollywand - Jul 20, 2004 9:38 pm (#8 of 601)

Wandless Wizard, I wanted to reply to your post saying that you weren't sure what is happening with the last line: the prophet is giving the exact date: July 31. Your reading is great: Harry approaches, yadda yadda, and he is born as the seventh month dies. A kind of circular poetry.


schoff - Jul 20, 2004 10:14 pm (#9 of 601)

Even if it is not the correct grammatical interpretation, the natural assumption is that the next sentence continues the Harry and Voldemort motif.

And I don't argue with this. It's what (and quite possibly how) they have to do in regards to the "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives..." that I disagree with.


zelmia - Jul 20, 2004 10:20 pm (#10 of 601)

Okay. Here we go:

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...

Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies...

and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not...

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..." (OP Ch. 37)

First of all, to briefly explain, a pronoun replaces another noun so you don't have to keep saying it over and over. For example instead of saying Harry again in a sentence, you would say "he". As in Harry [=original noun] didn't think he could finish the novel because he was so tired. Thus in this sentence, the antecedent (or word the pronoun replaces) is Harry.

Now it's true that there are a lot of nouns in the entire Prophecy and most of us have been assuming that "either" and "neither" refer to "the one" and "Dark Lord". But what I am suggesting is that if these are referring to the word "power" instead, you get quite a different meaning to the Prophecy.

I am breaking it down this way: "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches..." The noun in this phrase is "Power" but the word "power" is modified (by the prepositional "to vanquish". In other words, what does this power do?

Moving down to the second stanza: "Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies..." In this stanza we have 2 pronouns. "those" which is modified by "who have thrice defied" so we know what this pronoun is referring to, and "him". In this case, "him" can be referring to either "the one" or "the Dark Lord." But in order to make sense, "him" can only be referring to "the Dark Lord" otherwise the sentence would mean "[The One will be] born to those who have thrice defied the one."

3rd line: "and the Dark Lord will mark him (the One) as his (the Dark Lord's) equal, but he (the One) will have power the Dark Lord knows not..."

Finally: "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives..."

Now, you can read this one of two ways: 1) that either and neither refer to The One and the Dark Lord, which we've been doing

2) that both refer to Power. Thus you would get "and one Power must die at the hand of the other, for the second Power cannot live while the other survives."

The word "power" is modified by the phrase "the Dark Lord knows not". The third stanza could simply read "and the Dark Lord will mark him (the One) as his (the Dark Lord's) equal, but he (the One) will have unknown power."

I guess my point to all this is that all the other stanzas have very clear antecedents, while the last one does not.


Detail Seeker - Jul 20, 2004 11:06 pm (#11 of 601)

The problem, I have with your theory about either and neither referring to power is, that the prophecy speaks about one power only. There is no explicit addressing of Voldemort’s power(s), that would allow to substitute it.

Either way: Which would be the consequences derived from the theory, that the third line refers to powers, not to people ? To my mind, Harry would free the world from Voldemort and Voldemort from his fears, if he killed him or Voldemort would kill Harry, so having no dangerous obstacle left to power, were the first interpretation true. For the second theory, Harry would leave Voldemort powerless, i.e. without magic powers, doom him to a natural death or Harry will be left powerless.

So we may end up either with one death or one powerless person. I know, that I would not prefer the second option.

The use of the word die does not seem the right word for dealing with abstract powers, but, that might be ignorance of the finer details of English semantics.


mrweasley - Jul 20, 2004 11:21 pm (#12 of 601)

I think I want to back up Zelmia here, Detail Seeker. I'm sure we all agree that the part with the highest ambiguity is the "either...neither..." sentence. The verb "die" does not necessarily refer to living people only. And I think it's a fascinating thought that the battle is not about two persons (Harry and Voldemort) but rather about the values they represent.


zelmia - Jul 20, 2004 11:46 pm (#13 of 601)

Exactly, Mr. Weasley. And really, it's not so much my theory as another way to look at the actual wording is all.

By the way, I said that in the first line, the word "power" was modified by the 'prepositional' "to vanquish". However, "to vanquish" is actually the infinitive form rather than a prepositional phrase. It still modifies "power" but it's not a preposition in this case.

And Barb, (aka Madame Librarian) isn't the "either must die..." the subjunctive? She is making a qualifying statement there so it's not really future tense. Still, I think you're on to something with that shifting tenses idea.


Ozymandias - Jul 21, 2004 12:30 am (#14 of 601)

Here's a wild thought: what if "the other" in "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives" doesn't refer to Harry or Voldemort? That's always been the part that seems the fuzziest to me. There are a lot clearer ways of saying "Harry will kill Voldemort, or vice versa." So could "the other" be an unknown third person? Then the sentence would read "And either (Harry or Voldemort) must die at the hands of (the third person), for neither (Harry nor Voldemort) can live while the other (third person) survives." Perhaps this is a hint that Voldemort isn't the most dangerous enemy Harry will have to face?

File this under C for "Crazy theories that, while technically grammatically correct, are all but impossible"


zelmia - Jul 21, 2004 12:34 am (#15 of 601)

I've actually thought of that as well, Ozymandias. The only problem is that at the end of OP Dumbledore says, "I'm afraid that it is you" to Harry. So if we can make those two things work.... Hmm...


Ozymandias - Jul 21, 2004 12:39 am (#16 of 601)

Isn't the "I'm afraid that it is you" in response to Harry's question about whether Voldemort chose wrong, i.e. if the prophecy actually referred to Neville rather than Harry? Then the mysterious third person could still work, as Harry was asking about the identity of "the one" rather than "the other."


mrweasley - Jul 21, 2004 12:52 am (#17 of 601)

Are you secretly suggesting that the "third person" is our mysterious Half Blood Prince, Ozymandias? Anyway, I guess that the wording of the prophecy doesn't exclude your interpretation.


Ozymandias - Jul 21, 2004 12:55 am (#18 of 601)

Nah, MrWeasley, I'm firmly in the camp that the HBP is Godric Gryffindor. And just the fact that the wording doesn't exclude it is significant. JKR is so insistent on the "careful wording" that there's just got to be something hidden in there! And if there isn't, that's not going to stop me from sitting with my copy of OoP and the Chicago Manual of Style and dissecting the grammar until I go insane. Very Happy


snowflake - Jul 21, 2004 5:50 am (#19 of 601)

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies... and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives... The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..." (OP Ch. 37) The way I interpret the prophecy is just what it says. The last line is just to remind the reader, or listener, when the "one" is coming. Sort of framing the core of the prophecy. The core: the Dark Lord is going to mark him as his equal (in a way admitting that the "one" is equal in strength), but the "one" will have power that the Dark Lord knows not. The power that they are talking about is the same as the power in the locked room, which is emotions, that Harry has so much in him. Harry has very strong emotions, he was able to "make things happen" like make the glass disappear in PS/SS at the Zoo; when aunt Marge was blown up. Harry admitted in PA 4 (p. 47 UK) that he lost control [of his emotions]. Somewhere else, on p. 158 (I think also PA4--I am not sure, I do not have my book here)"a hatred such as he had never known before was coursing through Harry like a poison." I can see everywhere, even at the beginning, when Hagrid came to the island, he asked Harry, don't things happen, when you are upset? It was clearly mentioned in OP too, by Dumbledore. Emotions took him to rescue Sirius, emotions made him want to kill Bellatrix; and again, emotions for going to see Sirius again, made Voldemort leave Harry's body. LV does not have emotions. He just wants to live forever and have power, power in controlling others, because of the non-existence of emotions, there is no good nor evil (as LV explained to Quirrell), just power. He is a cold hearted man, whereas Harry is a very warm hearted person. If you see it figuratively, you are either cold hearted or warm hearted, you cannot be both. So it is either Harry who will kill LV or LV who will kill Harry. My guts tells me, the prophecy already predicts that Harry is going to survive, because he has "the power to vanquish the Dark Lord" and will also have "power the Dark Lord knows not." And the way he is going to kill LV is going to be similar to the way he killed Tom Riddle--without thought, as if it has to be that way.

Of course, I can be all wrong.


Madame Librarian - Jul 21, 2004 10:01 am (#20 of 601)

Gosh, this topic is almost as complex as time travel. It makes my brain hurt!

I am not sure about all the technical grammar issues, but I am sure of one thing--when the plot plays out, it'll all make sense. We'll go "aah, so, of course." Than again, we may still need to read it over a few times to parse the actual events to match up to the words of the prophecy. Nevertheless this is a fascinating discussion and I don't mean to imply that we should stop. More! More! Ideas...I need ideas!

Right now, if I could ask JKR a question, I'd ask her what the next phrase was after "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies...."

Ciao. Barb


MrsGump - Jul 21, 2004 1:35 pm (#21 of 601)

I have a rather long theory about the Prophesy that comes from a combination of basically all of the posts on the forum. I wish I could remember where all of the ideas came from, but I cannot. I do know that large parts popped into my head while reading discussions of Round Pink Spider and S.E. Jones. The ?T.M. Riddle a half-forgotten friend?, ?The Serpent and the Silver Instrument? and the old Prophesy threads were also important.

The One with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies....

--> This lets us know its Harry or Neville, not much mystery here and explained pretty well by Dumbledore

and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not...

Taken as two parts: --> Mark as his equal: DD says LV tried many experiments to become eternal; that there is not much of himself left; that no one would recognize him as the boy who was Tom Riddle; what if LV was trying to sequester the ?good? part of himself. And there was a good part:

From the World Book Day Chat-> mnich: Was Voldemort born evil? JK Rowling replies -> I don't believe that anybody was born evil. You will find out more about the circumstances of his birth in the next book

--> I’ve read much discussion on Harry and LV being the Ying/ Yang, with Harry being good. But no one is pure good or pure evil. What if LV was trying to remove the little bit of goodness that was in him, Tom Riddle, to start with? We know that the AK and Crucio work better if you mean it or enjoy causing pain, in other words are truly evil- would removing all good make these curse even more powerful for LV?

Also there have been many good arguments that LV = TR. (see the HBP thread) What if the marking as equal is the transfer of not just memories, but the actual part of LV that was good (for lack of a better term, I’ll call this “little piece of goodness” Tom Riddle, because that would have to be where any good came from, as LV is all about evil). That piece of TR entered Harry through his scar.

When Harry is close to LV, his scar hurts. What if the TR part inside Harry recognizes himself and is trying to return to make LV whole again? If the TR part left the same way it got it, it would leave through the scar.

World Book Day Chat: Cathedral: Don't want to ruin the ending, but will we be finding out more about the significance of the shape of Harry's scar in future books?
JK Rowling replies -> The shape is not the most significant aspect of that scar, and that's all I'm going to say!

Plus, why was it so painful for Harry to be possessed by LV in OotP? LV possessed others, and Quirrell wasn't screaming in pain throughout all of SS/PS. I’d say it’s probably not pleasant, especially if you want to think something bad about LV, but not like what Harry experienced. What if the TR part was trying to rip itself away from Harry to return to LV. When Harry finally says “Enough, at least I’ll see Sirius” and releases the love/ goodness, that might have allowed TR to leave him, too. If LV spent all that time trying to remove the TR part, I’m sure he would flee instead of letting love flow back inside.

--> Power the Dark Lord knows not

Which leads us to the second part of this phrase. It’s been discussed and pretty much agreed that this power is goodness/ love. If Harry contains not only his own goodness plus what little there was in TR, then he has more than anyone else would.

Another point that S.E. Jones put into my head, was that Trelawney may be making predictions about LV, not Harry. (born midwinter, violent death, etc) So in my theory, Trelawney would be reading the TR part of LV that is contained inside of Harry. The TR part may also have been what helped choose Harry's wand.

The Long Lost Friend- This would also explain why Harry feels that diary Tom Riddle is familiar and has similarities to him. Because the TR part inside of him recognizes himself.

In Essence Divided- After Harry sees the snake, and DD asks from what perspective, this may be a clue as to how Harry and LV are connected. Harry is not being possessed but actually sharing LV thoughts. The TR part is getting stronger (or maybe the blood part from GoF allows a stronger connection now?) and is actually linking up to the rest of himself. I don’t think LV would understand this. He doesn't seem to look too closely at anything, just use what is helpful to him right now. But the silver instrument may have been telling DD that it is LV (the snake) but that he is now divided into two parts- one that is the living LV and the other that resides in Harry.

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

Each section of the Prophesy is separated by ?, which can allow for them to be separate thoughts, because something has been omitted. So the either/ neither may or may not refer to Harry and LV.

I’m going to say it does not, for the simple reason that both are now (since GoF) living. I believe that it is referring to LV and TR. If it did mean Harry and LV, Harry would’ve been killed in the graveyard when LV came back to life. This still means that vanquishing the DL is still up to Harry because the other part resides inside of him. TR isn’t really living, but hanging out like vapor-Voldie was all those years. If the key to vanquishing the DL is to reunite LV with the good TR part, then the gleam of triumph in DD eyes could be because Harry and LV will eventually need to be in physical contact to accomplish this, and the blood transfer fixed that problem.

I have no idea of why a part of LV would have been transferred in the first place. I also have this problem: From JKR’s website: In “Chamber of Secrets”, what would have happened if Ginny had died and Tom Riddle had escaped the diary? JKR -> I can’t answer that fully until all seven books are finished, but it would have strengthened the present-day Voldemort considerably.

I’m not sure if the diary Tom Riddle would be the same as the one I’m saying the Prophesy was made about? Or if the Prophesy is just for the good part of LV and the diary only contains the same evil parts that now exist in LV? (In other words, diary TR = LV like everyone argued on the HBP thread). If evil diary TR was back to life, that would give LV two evil parts to Harry’s 1& Ω good parts (his own plus the good TR part)?


Madame Librarian - Jul 21, 2004 7:09 pm (#22 of 601)

Mrs. Gump, nice bit of theorizing there. Lots to think about. One question/comment. I do think there's something to the idea that the little bit of good in LV is the Tom Riddle part and that is maybe inside Harry now. But the Tom Riddle we meet in CoS is 16 years old and already a pretty nasty dude. He's not totally lost his humanity, shed his boyhood self, but has committed a number of heinous crimes including murder.

So, at what point did Tom start to turn? Was he a bratty kid of 4 or 5 at the orphanage who was merely responding to a cold, unloving, possibly cruel environment? Is his evil (small "e" evil) an inherited sort of characteristic? Remember, his dad wasn't Mr. Congeniality, he threw his pregnant wife out, for heaven's sake! Maybe Mom Riddle was awful too. Maybe Tom's switch to the Dark side happened suddenly when he learned about his wizarding family background and his own personal history when he was at Hogwarts. After 11 or so years of a grim childhood, struggling to be a good student, nice kid, he just cracks when he finds out the truth about himself. The anger and resentment take over. These are the details I hope we learn from the next books.

What I'm getting at is that Harry "containing" the Tom Riddle part of LV does not necessarily mean that he holds a solidly good and innocent piece. It's perhaps the human part of LV, but still has the capacity to be nasty. What that may mean...well, that's why I bring it up here. Hoping others can expand.

Ciao. Barb


zelmia - Jul 21, 2004 8:51 pm (#23 of 601)

Well, for that matter, we all have the "capacity to be nasty" don't we? I don't think Voldemort stored any part of his former Riddle identity inside Harry, either deliberately or inadvertently. Some of his power, yes (Parseltongue) but not his actual identity. That was saved in the Diary. [Please see the Diary thread if you interested in why I think this was done.]

That said, Dumbledore does deliberately call him "Tom" so, you could be on to something...


mrweasley - Jul 21, 2004 11:48 pm (#24 of 601)

Mrs Gump, what a post!

I want to put a few question marks behind some of your statements.

...it's Harry or Neville, not much mystery here... I guess you're right, but it's not certain, is it? I think this statement of yours addresses a core question: Can we take everything DD says as "the ultimate truth"? Can we always trust his statements? There's probably no answer to that before we've read the end of Book 7.

Then the "mark as equal" bit. Crucial, right? Equal in what? Equal powers? If so, what kind of powers? If not, what other "equals" are possible? As you also pointed out, Mme Librarian and Zelmia, the whole "Is Voldemort Tom Riddle?" debate makes it even more confusing.

Anyway, this discussion is getting complex. There seems to be just so much connected with those few words that Trelawney and JKR worded so "extremely carefully"... :-D


MrsGump - Jul 22, 2004 5:36 am (#25 of 601)

Madame Librarian, using the name Tom Riddle for what got transferred to Harry was just for convenience. If he did send TR, there would obviously be bad as well as the good. The 16 year old we see from the diary is defiantly NOT nice. My books are packed away (getting ready to move) so I could not look up quotes about what experiments Voldemort did to himself.

I like the way you have said his humanity. That is a better description. It would also help with the idea that his goal is to conquer death. Remove the part that makes you human and you immortal soul is the only thing left? Or maybe his conscious?

And MrWeasley, I could've added many more question marks myself. :-) I'm hoping everyone here will look for holes or more clues.


rambkowalczyk - Jul 22, 2004 8:51 am (#26 of 601)

the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches.

That means someone is coming. present tense. He or she isn't here yet but is definitely on the way. It's only one person. "The one ... approaches." Chances are this means Harry or Neville but not both.

Do you think it is nitpicking that One isn't capitalized. Dark Lord is capitalized.

Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies.

those--refers to his parents. I note this because usually a child is born to his mother and this is making reference to both his parents. This prophecy was made before July ended and according to Dumbledore there were two parents who had thrice defied Voldemort: the Potters and the Longbottoms.

and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not.

him--ok the one is a male. There have been a number of theories that suggest Neville may be the one but I will ignore them for now mainly because Dumbledore doesn't believe it. I believe Harry was marked by Voldemort when something of Voldemort entered Harry when the curse failed to kill him. As I type this I have forgotten the names of the previous people who have posted excellent theories that I would like to comment on.

Someone suggested that it was the good part of Tom Riddle that entered Harry. I generally agree with this except I think that what entered Harry was neither good nor evil just Tom. In book 2 Dumbledore says that Harry has many of the qualities that S Slytherin would appreciate: a certain disregard for the rules, Parseltongue, cleverness etc. This person then explained certain things that were easily explained by the fact that there is a piece of Riddle in him.

But what is the power the Dark Lord knows not. Is it Harry's gift of knowing what the Dark Lord is thinking? According to Snape Voldemort was unaware of this connection until Arthur Weasley was attacked at the MOM. Or is it a power Harry got from his parents that he would have had anyway whether or not he was attacked by Lord Voldemort. Was it his Mother's love sacrificing herself to protect him or is it something else?

the Dark Lord knows not.

Does this mean that the Dark Lord is ignorant of this power or that he doesn't have it and can't get it.

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives.

I like whoever suggested that either might refer to power not necessarily to the one. Be aware of your motives. Are you so dead set against Harry dying that you will look for any loophole. I am.

Someone someplace else (I think Mugglenet North Tower) thought it was significant that the prophecy referred to Voldemort as the Dark Lord and Harry as the one. She felt that the Dark Lord and Voldemort were not necessarily the same entity--that the Dark Lord was some sort of an evil spirit designed to spread hatred among friends etc. This spirit was previously in other evil wizards, possibly Grindelwald. Just thought I'd throw this in for those Potter fans who don't want to see Harry kill anyone.

I originally thought that the only way Harry could kill Voldemort was for he himself to die. I saw the link between them like the Dragonheart link. This prophecy puts an end to that idea.

There's another theory floating around (and I forget where) that suggest that what must be killed is the Riddle inside of Harry, that this is somehow fundamental to Voldemort. Voldemort can't die while that part of Riddle still survives in Harry.

the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies.

future tense here as he hasn't been born.


The Wandless Wizard - Jul 22, 2004 9:10 am (#27 of 601)

Do you think it is nitpicking that One isn't capitalized. Dark Lord is capitalized.

The one is not a proper name while Dark Lord is used as such. Proper names are always capitalized. If people actually called Harry, the One With the Power, it would be capitalized. The Boy who Lived is capitalized because it has achieved proper noun status. An example would be if I was trying to describe Ron to you but forgot his name. I'd say "the person who was Gryffindor’s keeper in the 5th book". Person isn't capitalized because it is not a name for this person, just a description. However, Weasel King, even though it is not Ron's name, is capitalized because it is used like a name. Harry didn't have a name yet, so he was just referred to as that one. That was probably overkill for an explanation, but I figured better safe than sorry. I hope it makes sense.


MrsGump - Jul 22, 2004 9:30 am (#28 of 601)

We are having a grammar discussion on the HBP thread, and while looking for information on hyphens, I also found this about ellipses and dashes:

"Ellipses. The ellipsis (plural ellipses) is the mark that indicates the omission of quoted material ...

Dash. A dash (publishers call it an "em-dash" because it's the width of the letter m) is used to mark a parenthesis — like this — or an interruption. Don't confuse it with a Hyphen, although you can use two hyphens -- like this -- for dashes in your papers

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] Guide to Grammar and Style By Jack Lynch"

I had thought that the ellipses in the Prophecy meant a pause, but the correct punctuation would've been a dash ( -- ) not an ellipse ( ... ). So, are we missing information? We are hearing what DD put in the Pensive, and not the original Prophesy? Did DD edit it? Is it important, or can the ellipse be used for a pause?


Leila 2X4B - Jul 22, 2004 11:52 am (#29 of 601)

I think JKR uses ellipses for pauses all of the time. I think that was one of those times. The memories in the pensive occur how DD experienced it, therefore I do not think DD omitted anything.


mrweasley - Jul 22, 2004 12:41 pm (#30 of 601)

But what is the power the Dark Lord knows not. ram (can I call you ram?), this point was actually pretty clear to me. At the end of GoF, Voldemort says:

"You all know that on the night I lost my powers and my body, I tried to kill him. His mother died in the attempt to save him - and unwittingly provided him with a protection I admit I had not foreseen. ... I could not touch the boy. [...] This is old magic, I should have remembered it, I was foolish to overlook it."

But another point in your post made my hair stand up, ram: It's true, the prophecy calls Voldemort "The Dark Lord". The only other people we know who call him that - are the Death Eaters! Mhm...
 
 


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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #31 to #60

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 3:44 pm


rambkowalczyk - Jul 23, 2004 6:04 am (#31 of 601)

Call me ramb,

MrWeasley you may be right. "The power he knows not" may well be the protection his mother gave him before she died. There is the statement Dumbledore made about a room in the Dept of Mysteries containing "a force that is at once more wonderful and more terrible than death". Dumbledore further says "It is the power held within that room that you possess in such quantities and which Voldemort has not at all."

The question is: Is the power in the dept of Mysteries the same power as referred to in the prophecy? Is the power that saved Harry from the AK curse the same power as in the Dept of Mysteries and the same power as referred to in the prophecy?

What we know of the power in the Dept of Mysteries is: "That power took you (Harry) to save Sirius tonight. That power also saved you (Harry) from possession by Voldemort, because he could not bear to reside in a body so full of the force he detests." Dumbledore's quotes to Harry.

The nitpicking point I wish to make is If Voldemort hates this power then it means he knows about it, therefore this can't be the "power he knows not."

On the other hand the "power he knows not" may simply refer to the fact that Voldemort always underestimates this power and therefore doesn't really know what this power is about.

Regarding my question about the capitalization of the one. I was thinking of the Babylon 5 series where Minbari prophecy referred to the One. It referred to someone who would follow in Valens path. In one episode a character called Zathrus said that Sinclair, Dalenn, and Sheridan could each be called the One. The One was definitely capitalized in the show and part of my subconscious felt it should be capitalized here.


mrweasley - Jul 23, 2004 6:59 am (#32 of 601)
Edited by Jul 23, 2004 8:00 am

Mhm... "...more wonderful and more terrible than death..."

Is death wonderful? Terrible? Anyway, the reference to a power that makes Harry so exceptional and that Voldemort doesn't have, seems to be important, doesn't it?

Most of us, I believe, think that DD is talking about love. However, is love more terrible than death? Well, in certain cases, I guess... This whole "special power" question is kind of tricky, isn't it?


Round Pink Spider - Jul 23, 2004 10:50 am (#33 of 601)

Ramb, In English, terrible can take on an old meaning similar to the old meaning of awful, as in "demanding of fearful respect for its profound power." Love can be terrible in this sense, as was the love that caused Lily to throw herself in front of Voldemort to save her baby.

Again, in English, to "know" can mean "to possess, to grasp within oneself," as well as to understand.


KWeldon - Jul 23, 2004 12:31 pm (#34 of 601)

Ramb,

"There's another theory floating around (and I forget where) that suggest that what must be killed is the Riddle inside of Harry, that this is somehow fundamental to Voldemort"

I believe you are referring to the fascinating Changeling Hypothesis, which has it's own link on Red Hen something or other, but Maline in the North Tower column on MuggleNet has the exact link. If memory serves, and to paraphrase, Voldemort transferred his soul into Harry that night when he cursed him, which is why Harry finds the T.M. Riddle name familiar, which is why his scar hurts when Voldemort is emotional, and so on.

KWeldon


Padfoot - Jul 23, 2004 1:07 pm (#35 of 601)

Wait, if Harry has Voldemort's soul inside him, then what is inside Voldemort? I sort of thought that Voldemort's soul was all that was left of him after he AK'd Harry, floating around somewhere.


rambkowalczyk - Jul 23, 2004 2:14 pm (#36 of 601)

KWeldon, I couldn't remember if it was the same theory or not. Thanks for the reference.

Padfoot, I think the idea was Voldemort's soul is trapped within Harry and the resurrected Voldemort is at present soulless. This makes him more terrible than before. (I am trying to think of Sybil’s 2nd prophecy, I can't find the POA)Its also suppose to explain why neither can live while the other survives.

I have philosophical difference with regards to Voldemort's soul or anybody else's soul being in someone else's body. But whatever its called there is something of Voldemort in Harry.


Penny Lane. - Jul 24, 2004 8:46 am (#37 of 601)

Where is the Changeling Hypothesis that I hear so much about?


KWeldon - Jul 25, 2004 9:03 am (#38 of 601)

Penny,

I couldn't possibly do it justice, so let me refer you to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] where it first appeared, although it is summarized very well by Maline in the North Tower column at [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] Go to Mugglenet, look on the left for the North Tower column, and then click on the links (it takes two columns to discuss thoroughly) to the Changeling Hypothesis.

Heavy reading, and well worth a thread here, I'd say.

KWeldon


Green Eyes - Jul 25, 2004 2:57 pm (#39 of 601)

I think the prophesy has been somewhat explained to us already by Dumbledore. Harry and Neville were both born at the end of July. Their parents had defied Voldemort three times. The Dark Lord marked "the one" as his equal - Harry/scar. The power the Dark Lord knows not is the power of love. Harry's mother's magic has already been addressed, and we see how Harry drove Voldemort from him at the DOM when he thought of Sirius..."it was your heart that saved you."

The part that is up for examination and interpretation IMO is the "either must die at the hand of the other, for neither can live while the other survives."

On one level, the most obvious one, we see this as a prediction of a killing of one by the other - a physical killing. On another level we can interpret this as some sort of exorcism...not unlike the way Harry saved Ginny from Possession in COS. The idea that "the other" is some third person (Neville) is intriguing and perhaps now that Neville has had his debut of sorts will play out in books 6 and 7. But my instinct is to say we are still only dealing with two individuals...Harry and Voldemort. I mean why would Harry be going through all of this if there was some other person to save the day in the end? I think I'd burn Hogwarts down if I were him!!!Smile

The theory that TR is somehow inside of Harry IMO has also already been dealt with when Dumbledore explains to Harry that LV transferred some of his powers to him when he gave him the scar. That also gave Harry the mental connection to LV that manifests itself in OotP. Harry is in pain when he is near LV for the same reason that LV can't reside inside Harry...goodness/love v. evil/hatred.

Quirrell wasn't so much possessed by Voldemort as he played "host" to him ala a parasite, Quirrell also didn't have the "power" that LV "knew not." Ginny didn't either, but notice Ginny tried to fight TR off for a time before completely succumbing. Ginny was also dealing with TR who was only 16 and had not achieved his ultimate power level not to mention he was only a memory in a diary. Possession infers that the person being possessed is taken over by the possessor (more like Ginny's version/or Linda Blair in The Exorcist) Unaware of what was going on for the most part. This didn't happen to either Quirrell or Harry. Both were aware of LV and could communicate with him in some way.

Tom Riddle cannot be the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord because he in essence is the Dark Lord plus TR was born 50 years before Harry and the prophesy being made. The only way I see anything like this happening is if TR during his possession of Ginny Weasley told her "secrets" (which he tells Harry he did) and these might be remembered and thus used against Voldemort. This is plausible because we know Voldemort is over confident, TR was too...he never thought telling Ginny anything would be detrimental to him because he was so sure she would die. Ginny's starting to have a larger role in the books, so perhaps JKR is taking us this route.

The big question remains...is it a physical killing or some other thing?


KWeldon - Jul 25, 2004 3:16 pm (#40 of 601)

Green Eyes,

"The big question remains...is it a physical killing or some other thing?"

And, as a follow-up to your post and question, we have to remember that the end duel cannot be Voldemort and his wand vs. Harry and his wand, since as illustrated in GoF the wands cannot fight each other. I wonder if this forebodes that the "extinguishing" (for lack of a better word) of Voldemort will not be a physical death but some other more nebulous end (although hopefully unequivocal--please JKR!).


rambkowalczyk - Jul 25, 2004 9:35 pm (#41 of 601)

Interesting thought that Ginny doesn't have the "power he knows not". Intuitively one would think she might.

I think it has to be a physical killing. Not to be sarcastic, but it does say "either must die..." does it get any plainer that that?

On the other hand the beginning says "The one with the power to vanquish the ..." vanquish – 1) to conquer or defeat in battle; force into submission, or 2) defeat in any conflict as in an argument or to overcome a feeling, condition, etc; suppress. Nothing about killing physical or otherwise in this definition.

The beginning of the prophecy says that the one with the power is going to defeat not necessarily kill the Dark Lord. (and we know there are worse things than death). But as someone earlier pointed out the word "either" seems to refer to the "power" not to the person who has it.

If this is the case what dies is the power not the person who has it.


mrweasley - Jul 25, 2004 9:55 pm (#42 of 601)

The only reason why I can't quite get myself to believe that the "Dark Lord" power in Tom Riddle will be vanquished, and that after that Tom Riddle will be... um... purified or cured is JKR's comment on her website:

"...the insistence that with a bit of therapy 'Voldie' would be a real sweetheart [must stop]."


rambkowalczyk - Jul 25, 2004 10:02 pm (#43 of 601)

MrWeasley, I'm not implying that once Voldemort loses his power he will be instantly sorry like Darth Vader was. But he should be defeated once and for all. This could be one of those things worse than death.


mrweasley - Jul 25, 2004 10:40 pm (#44 of 601)

Oh, I see. I guess I just thought I'd like to see it if this thing "worse than death" would for Riddle / Voldemort be something like a "catharsis", a purification and realization process after which he sees what he's done and has to live with the heavy burden of guilt for the rest of his life...


Sherbie Lemon - Jul 26, 2004 5:46 am (#45 of 601)

"But another point in your post made my hair stand up, ram: It's true, the prophecy calls Voldemort "The Dark Lord". The only other people we know who call him that - are the Death Eaters! Mhm... Mr. Weasley

Interesting catch! In fact, Sybil used "Dark Lord" in her second prophecy as well. Perhaps this is simply because "Dark Lord" flows better and/or is more poetic than "He Who Must Not Be Named" or "You Know Who." Or perhaps that particular wording means something more.

There are ellipses in the second prophecy as well, which indicates to me that no words were left out of the first.


mrweasley - Jul 26, 2004 6:56 am (#46 of 601)

"It's lucky it's dark. I haven't blushed so much since Madam Pomfrey told me she liked my new earmuffs."

Thanx Sherbie Lemon:-) I had thought nobody noticed my remark. I feel much better now. *wipes his tears of gratefulness*

But seriously, the distinction of the different names for Voldemort does seem to have an importance for JKR. In OotP, she lets Harry confront Snape with the issue:

"Can you tell me something, sir?" said Harry, firing up again. "Why do you call Voldemort the Dark Lord? I've only ever heard Death Eaters call him that." (OotP., ch. 26)


Green Eyes - Jul 26, 2004 7:29 am (#47 of 601)

Harry says that to Snape because he believes that Snape might still be loyal to LV. The Dark Lord being some title of respect that only followers would use.

Ginny doesn't have the power to vanquish the Dark Lord because only Harry (apparently) has it. The other thing to remember about Ginny's situation in COS was that she was dealing more with TR, not a full-blown LV. She has the capacity to love - but naturally - she's been raised by a loving family. Harry has grown up essentially abused, why is he capable of love? And to such a degree as to be able to vanquish the Dark Lord? Harry's capacity to love seems to me is more meaningful because he really didn't have an example to remember or emulate. This is the fundamental difference between he and TR... TR was raised in much the same way as Harry... orphaned, raised by Muggles in less than ideal circumstances... why is one a human being with the capacity to love and the other a monster?

I tend to think that there will not be a physical killing but a "vanquishing" of some sort. Although I'd love to see Harry cut the head off of LV with the sword of Gryffindor!!!! But JKR has said that therapy won't help LV so maybe I'll be surprised!


lobelia - Jul 26, 2004 7:48 am (#48 of 601)

This part of the prophecy always makes me think...

... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

J.K. Rowling has said about the prophecy:

"both Madam Trelawney and I worded the prophecy extremely carefully and that is all I have to say on the subject."

The first time I read it, I thought: OK, now, either one has to kill the other… I still think that. However, there has been some speculation that no one else but Harry can kill Voldemort and vice versa.

I think it goes even further to hint that if someone else tries to kill Harry or Voldemort that they both die.

... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

In OotP we see that Dumbledore does not try to kill Voldemort but capture him. Well Dumbledore is the only person who has heard the complete prophecy, as we find out at the end. We often think that Dumbledore is trying to restore Tim Riddle, but perhaps he knows that to kill Voldemort (by any other hand than Harry), would doom Harry.

Perhaps this is the reason that the death curse backfired in the first place. I have seen some speculate (due to the fact that the curse never came out during the Priori Incantatem) that perhaps someone else actually tried to kill Harry, but it backfired on Voldemort?

PS: If asked to speculate more I would say that Godric Gryffindor put some ancient magic in his blood... that would protect the true Gryffindor heir from the Slytherin heir.


Round Pink Spider - Jul 26, 2004 10:38 am (#49 of 601)

TR was raised in much the same way as Harry...orphaned, raised by Muggles in less than ideal circumstances...why is one a human being with the capacity to love and the other a monster?

Choices, Green Eyes, choices... love isn't really an emotion. It's a choice. We choose to whom we will entrust ourselves, to whom we will open ourselves. Tom Riddle has chosen "no one." He has closed himself entirely to love, because love hurts. That's why Dumbledore said that Harry's capacity to feel such pain is his greatest strength: because he is willing and able to open himself to such an extent that he feels he will die from the loss of Sirius.


Richard!!!Reid - Jul 31, 2004 10:09 am (#50 of 601)

Perhaps love to Voldemort is like Crucio to Harry??? If it turns out Voldemort is defeated in the end, but instead of being killed, he is filled with the emotion from the closed room in the DoM. This would be torture to Voldemort and to live his life like that would be "worse than death".


Prefect Marcus - Jul 31, 2004 11:53 am (#51 of 601)

You know that quote of Rowling where she says that she carefully worded the prophecy? Perhaps she meant that she carefully worded it so that there would always be a doubt to what exactly it means?

In other words, the prophecy means exactly what we assume at first glance it means, and what Dumbledore tells Harry it means. But in order to keep us from getting too comfortable, she deliberately worded it ambiguously.

In other words, there is no hidden meaning.

I would not put it past her.

Marcus


The Wandless Wizard - Jul 31, 2004 1:02 pm (#52 of 601)

I agree Prefect Marcus. I said something similar in another thread (I can't remember which thread as the prophecy runs through a few different ones). People were complaining about how it was worded carefully. I suggested worded carefully did not mean worded to yield only one possible interpretation. Instead it was worded carefully to fit the interpretation JKR wanted to use as well as many others. So when Book 7 is done, we'll all look at the prophecy and say "Of course, it all fits." But before that, we can come up with lots of different ideas and meanings.


haymoni - Jul 31, 2004 4:13 pm (#53 of 601)

Yeah, we need something to do before Book 6 comes out.


Solitaire - Jul 31, 2004 11:40 pm (#54 of 601)

Will Dumbledore need to keep his and Harry's memories of the prophecy in the Pensieve from now on, so that Voldemort is not able to hear the entire thing?

I can't believe V. will stop trying to find it out, probably through Legilimency; and we have already seen that Harry hasn't been too effective with his Occlumency. Just a thought ...

Solitaire


TomProffitt - Aug 1, 2004 4:33 am (#55 of 601)

If I understand Dumbledore correctly, I would bet that there are only three people with the knowledge of the full prophecy in their heads. Trelawney, Harry, and Dumbledore.

He Who Must Not Be Named will continue to try and get the prophecy. Which of the three he will go after I don't know, perhaps all three.

For quite some time He Who Must Not Be Named has assumed that Harry was the easiest target. He may now (after the battle of the DoM) decide that Harry is too tough a nut to crack and go after poor Sybil.


Steve Newton - Aug 1, 2004 5:12 am (#56 of 601)

Why do you figure that Trelawney knows the prophecy? She seemed to have no memory of her second known prophecy.


TomProffitt - Aug 1, 2004 5:39 am (#57 of 601)

I'm sure the knowledge of it is in her head somewhere, even if she has no specific memory of it. There's no canon proof for that, of course. She spoke the words so I imagine there to be a magical way of getting her to speak them again.


contess lillein asend - Aug 1, 2004 8:38 am (#58 of 601)

I think the first line is worded to let whomever know that the one to defeat the Dark Lord is coming soon, not years from now. The last refers to the twin. One marked, one unmarked.


schoff - Aug 1, 2004 11:35 am (#59 of 601)

Even if Trelawney doesn't remember the Prophecy, it is still in her head. Voldemort was able to get info out of Bertha Jorkins, despite her being under a memory charm, and Harry was able to fully understand the Marauders in the Pensieve even though Snape really wasn't listening.

If Voldemort wants to know the Prophecy, the next target has to be Trelawney. She is now the weakest link.


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 1, 2004 1:10 pm (#60 of 601)

I agree. I think that’s the only reason Dumbledore keeps her around - she's not much of a teacher is she.
 
 


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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #61 to #90

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 3:50 pm

Note: some of the posts in this thread contain ‘the Prophecy’ as written in the French edition of the book. Some of the accent marks may not be accurate, but that is how they appeared in the archived document (.txt) after they were copied from World Crossing.

TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 1, 2004 1:14 pm (#61 of 601)

Richard, I don't think that's the only reason DD keeps her around. DD has compassion for others, aside from his own agenda.


contess lillein asend - Aug 1, 2004 1:22 pm (#62 of 601)

Have you noticed Trelawney's class predictions do not apply to Lavender and the rest, but seem to fit Harry?


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 1, 2004 1:24 pm (#63 of 601)

That’s the point I was making. Dumbledore knew that if Voldemort was ever to return, then Trelawney would be in grave danger. Dumbledore knew that if she stayed at Hogwarts - under his protection, then she could not be harmed and would remain safe. His compassion is the reason she is teaching there.


Solitaire - Aug 1, 2004 1:26 pm (#64 of 601)

I agree about Trelawney not being aware of having given the original prophecy ... which puts her in very grave danger. I think that is why DD retains her at Hogwarts, where he can keep her out of V's clutches. She strikes me as emotionally fragile and very fearful. One good memory-breaker charm would probably land her in St. Mungo's for good ... assuming she was not immediately AK'd. Sadly, I think HER days are probably numbered ...

Contess, I read your personal link info and had to giggle at using the forum as your Pensieve. I'm in rather the same boat. At least I can share my theories here w/o being thought an obsessed lunatic. After all, what fun are theories and predictions if we can't share them?

If JKR never writes another word in her life after the HP series, I think she deserves a HUGE award for both creating and renewing in so many the love of devouring literature, looking for symbolism, allusions & foreshadowing, predicting outcomes, interpreting prophecies, understanding history and its impact on literature, etc. Bravo!

Solitaire


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 1, 2004 1:29 pm (#65 of 601)

Ah Richard, now I understand what you were saying, please excuse the ring.


Green Eyes - Aug 2, 2004 1:27 pm (#66 of 601)

Round Pink Spider...I don't think love is a choice...it is a human emotion that we feel. You can choose how to live your life (good v evil), and you can also choose to act on your love for someone or not but you can't necessarily control who you fall in love with or how you feel toward a friend/family member.

I think Harry's ability to love even though he grew up without much comes from his mother's protection. Harry was loved by his parents - Tom Riddle's father rejects him even before he is born and his mother dies when he is very young. Harry's parents loved him so much they died to try and protect him. Riddle seems to have been unloved.

As Harry gets older he has to choose how to live his life but what he feels for Ron/Hermione/Weasleys etc. is not a choice, it's emotion borne out of mutual understanding. How can he possibly understand given the life he has lived before school?


zelmia - Aug 2, 2004 6:26 pm (#67 of 601)

Along those same lines, one could argue that Dumbledore chooses his love for Harry over his responsibility to the rest of the Wizarding World. He as much as admits so at the end of OotP. Perhaps even Dumbledore, with all his powers, cannot overcome this very basic and essential human emotion.

Was this what he meant by describing it as the deepest darkest most powerful mystery? That eventually, we all succumb to it, even though it might not be the "right" thing to do.


Sam Harks - Aug 3, 2004 4:51 pm (#68 of 601)

I have a question.... (new here)

I was rereading the prophecy and noticed something, I haven't seen it discussed and was wondering if it struck anyone else as odd and if so if you have any ideas.

The Prophecy refers to Voldemort as "The Dark Lord". In OotP Harry confronts Snape saying that he has only heard DE's and Snape call Voldy that. Does anyone else think this is weird...that Trelawney (seeing as she was not herself) wouldn't have just said Voldemort (or He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named even) rather than "The Dark Lord"

Just wondering if any of you had any thoughts


contess lillein asend - Aug 3, 2004 4:59 pm (#69 of 601)

Nice one Harks.


Hollywand - Aug 3, 2004 7:02 pm (#70 of 601)

Hi Sam, welcome to the Lexicon! This usage of "Dark Lord" has indeed been discussed on maybe this thread, maybe the Trelawney thread. The best method for getting through these sometimes daunting posts is to type key search words in for the topic. It's also great to read the first introductory post that begins the thread as it is often the most explanatory, then the next five to ten posts after it are usually really meaty. When you feel you have a good grasp of the core, skip to the last fifteen posts to bring you up to speed. Hope this is helpful, and allow me to treat you to a butterbeer.....

Most people think Sybill is just being poetic when referring to Voldemort as the Dork Lard, um, I mean Dark Lord. (Someone else came up with that handle, not me!) I would also say that Severus has a difficult time saying Voldemort with that flamin' tattoo on his forearm, and is a little too carnal to tiptoe around with "You-Know-Who". Just my two knuts, uh, I guess galleons... Welcome!


Ann - Aug 4, 2004 6:48 am (#71 of 601)

I've been thinking about the "either must die at the hand of the other" bit. It seems to me that it would have been quite clear if she had said "one must die at the hand of the other." "Either" is a poetic way of saying "one" (since it has the two-syllable rhythm, and, like other, ends in "ther"), and would mean "either one or the other." This is why most readers (and, apparently, Dumbledore) assume the line means that either Harry or Voldemort must be killed. But another possible reading would be that either is a poetic way of saying "each," which would mean that both would die. (This would be like "on either side" of something, meaning both sides.) I think she said "either" to keep it ambiguous. Or can anyone think of a grammatical reason against either of those readings? (Either again! Sorry!) Anyway, I think we can assume that Voldemort is going to die at the end, or possibly something worse than death. The question is whether Harry is. (I have toyed with the idea that "the other" is a third person, an enemy to both, but I think it would have been capitalized.)

To make this even more confusing, the second phrase, "neither can live while the other survives" is completely untrue: they've both been living (or in Voldemort's case, surviving) for 16 years now. Does this just mean that the movements or freedom of Harry and Voldemort will be limited and thwarted while the other is alive? But it doesn't say that! It says neither can live! And they are both living!

Very annoying. This has been going around in my head since OotP came out (well, not all that time -- I do have a life -- but often) and I'm very grateful to the Lexicon community for listening. But I will be even more grateful if someone can explain it properly.


Hollywand - Aug 4, 2004 6:53 am (#72 of 601)

Hi Ann, welcome to the Lex. If you look on this thread and the specifics on the prophecy thread, every single word has been dissected for possible double entendres. Happy hunting, and better take a few of these cauldron cakes with you for the journey. I mentioned on the reply above some tips for searching and reading and generally being a happy camper! ;-)


Ann - Aug 4, 2004 7:38 am (#73 of 601)

Thanks for the welcome, Hollywand, it's a wonderful forum!

Actually, I had read through the whole thread, and I just did a search on "either neither" and read through those postings again. The only ideas offered seem very far-fetched to me. MrsGump said that perhaps the ellipses between the phrases mean that some explanatory material has been omitted that would make either and other refer to Voldemort and Tom Riddle. I think this is unlikely since Trelawney’s prophecies seem to have ellipses in them, and they seem simply to be pauses. After all, Dumbledore and Harry heard it, and there aren't ellipses to mark omitted material in speech. (This was pointed out at the time.)

The second idea, proposed by Zelmia, is that either and neither refer back to "power" in the preceding line, but I don't this can work grammatically, as was pointed out by others: power is singular, either and neither both require a plural antecedent.

The idea about the other being a third person is discussed, and dismissed, as I would dismiss it.

There is some mention of another prophecy thread; is that what you mean? Is there a special way to find old threads?

Never mind -- I just went back and found the old thread. Almost 400 more posts to read! What fun!


Annika - Aug 4, 2004 8:11 am (#74 of 601)

The most perplexing word in the prophecy for me is the word "Vanquish" in the first line. The word vanquish does not necessarily mean "to kill", but means "to force into submission", "to suppress" or "to overcome". Albeit, this could mean death for either our protagonist or antagonist, but looking at the definition of "vanquish" another way, it could mean "? power to vanquish the Dark Lord (from Tom Riddle/Voldemort)? for neither (Tom Riddle/Voldemort) can live while the other survives.


Hollywand - Aug 4, 2004 9:10 am (#75 of 601)

That's a tremendous catch Annika on vanquish. As Dumbledore has warned Voldy that there are fates worse than death, I suspect this fate may be in store for LV. I have suggested on the wand thread and on the Wormtail thread, that Peter may be integral to fulfilling the prophecy. I feel that there are three fate makers in the story: Sybill Trelawney, Fawkes, and Wormtail. I have given details on symbolism of Wormtail's silver hand on the other two threads recently, so won't recount them here.

Thanks to everyone for making a thought provoking and intelligent discussion!!!!


Ann - Aug 4, 2004 9:31 am (#76 of 601)

Good point, Annika, though a rather depressing one. If Harry vanquishes Voldemort by some means other than killing him, it means that Harry dies in the process. "Either must die" makes it pretty unambiguous that at least one of them dies, and if not Voldemort....

Perhaps all this talk about veils and great adventures is meant to prepare us for such an eventuality. But I hope not!


Steve Newton - Aug 4, 2004 9:51 am (#77 of 601)

Or, perhaps, V dies and Harry loses his magical ability.


lobelia - Aug 4, 2004 10:07 am (#78 of 601)

I still have a "bee in my bonnet" about one segment of the prophecy.

... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

I think it was worded so that we believe that Harry is the only one who can kill Voldemort... (and everyone says duh!) However, I think it is worded in a way that indicates that if anyone else besides Harry tries to kill Voldemort, Harry does not survive. For example: Dumbledore kills Voldemort and Harry due to the "magical" connection must also die (not survive).

In OotP we see that Dumbledore does not try to kill Voldemort but capture him. Well Dumbledore is the only person who has heard the complete prophecy, as we find out at the end. We often think that Dumbledore is trying to restore Tim Riddle, but perhaps he knows that to kill Voldemort (by any other hand than Harry), would doom Harry.

We also see that the Order is trying to protect the "weapon" and also hints that Harry is the "weapon". What if they know that by killing Harry they could also vanquish the Dark Lord. However, due to their nature they are merely trying to protect Harry until he is powerful enough to vanquish Voldemort himself, thereby allowing Harry to fulfill the prophecy without dying himself. Perhaps the speculation that Fawkes is Gryffindor's protection for his true heir will go along with the Order of the Phoenix their protection of Harry "the weapon"

My argument is weakened by the fact that I have no idea how this related to what is being protected and studied in the Ministry of Magic.


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 4, 2004 10:08 am (#79 of 601)

Hope not. Perhaps Voldemort will lose all his ability. I originally thought of Riddle returning and the Voldemort life disappearing, but that sounds too Star Wars like for our JK.


Annika - Aug 4, 2004 10:08 am (#80 of 601)

"Either must die at the hand of the other, for neither can live while the other survives"

Part of my point is the third party factor. I am not sure that "the other" refers to Harry, but rather to "The Dark Lord/Voldemort" as one entity and Tom Riddle as the other. I have also read speculation that "the other" could be Wormtail or Neville. I am not sure about any of these theories, but they are interesting none-the-less.


Steve Newton - Aug 4, 2004 10:19 am (#81 of 601)

Annika,

I think your on to something. I am always suspicious of pronouns and while 'other's not a pronoun it is unclear to whom it is referring. I think, now that you say it, that it does refer to a third person. My first guess would be Peter, but, I am very unsure of this.


Solitaire - Aug 4, 2004 10:55 am (#82 of 601)

Actually, Steve, other IS an indefinite pronoun as it is used in the prophecy. In fact, it is precisely the use of so many pronouns without clear antecedents that makes the prophecy so confusing -- and exactly what JKR had in mind.

Solitaire


Steve Newton - Aug 4, 2004 11:22 am (#83 of 601)

Thanks for the grammar tip. I haven't taken a basic grammar class since 19... Never Mind.


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 4, 2004 11:22 am (#84 of 601)

I think no matter how the prophecy is interpreted, it all comes down to this - will Harry survive? Unfortunately, there is only one human alive who knows the definite answer.


rambkowalczyk - Aug 4, 2004 11:56 am (#85 of 601)

Ann about the word ‘either;. If I say something is on either side of the whatever, I would mean that it has an equal chance of being on one side of the other but not that it could be on both sides simultaneously. It is definitely ambiguous as to who or what either refers to but only one is dying at the hand of the other. If I am misinterpreting you please correct me.

Also Ann could you please explain what you mean when you say that either and neither require a plural antecedent. Something inside me wants to strongly disagree with this but before I do so I should understand what you mean. Please give an example of a plural antecedent.

Sam Harks about the Dark Lord. Somewhere on the forum people were discussing whether Salazar Slytherin was Voldemort's ancestor or the other way around. Traditionally an ancestor has to be born before the person in question so therefore many people speculated that it was significant when JKR said Voldemort was Slytherin's ancestor and then called it a deliberate mistake. It seems to me someone speculated that the Dark Lord was an evil entity separate from Voldemort himself. The evilness that was in Voldemort encouraged this entity to bind with him or something. This entity then goes back in time to infect Salazar. The point is that defeating Voldemort is not enough, one must also defeat the Dark Lord that is part of Voldemort as well. Keep in mind that in no way am I saying that Voldemort is an innocent bystander in all this. He is still evil.

"Either must die at the hand of the other because neither can live while the other survives"

Annika, are you trying to say that one of the "others" in the above sentence refers to someone other than Harry, Voldemort, Dark Lord, or power? That is something not specifically stated in the prophecy? I can see how Neville fits since he was born as the 7th month dies. but I not sure how we can fit Peter Pettigrew here.

For the time being I'm trying to keep it simple. That is there are only two people or forces that are fighting each other. "other" in the quoted sentence only means one of the two people or forces.

Neither can live while the other survives -- one of the definitions of live is "to enjoy a full and varied life." I see it as something as more than surviving.


Solitaire - Aug 4, 2004 12:24 pm (#86 of 601)

"The ONE (indefinite pronoun) with the power ..."

"... Born to THOSE (demonstrative pronoun) who have thrice defied him ..."

"... and EITHER (indefinite pronoun) must die at the hand of the OTHER (indefinite pronoun) for NEITHER (indefinite pronoun) can live while the OTHER (indefinite pronoun) survives ..."

Now, what EITHER, NEITHER, and OTHER refer to in each instance--and where they are used more than once, each use could have a different antecedent--I cannot say. I can only give their grammatical use.

The other personal pronouns (HE, HIM, HIS) make equally vague pronoun references, if you ask me. When JKR says she worded the prophecy very carefully, she wasn't kidding. I've never seen so many vague pronoun references in one place. Since all of the antecedents are unclear, I can only assume it was done deliberately.

Solitaire


Ann - Aug 4, 2004 1:48 pm (#87 of 601)

In answer to your questions, rambkowalczyk, "either" can mean both, at least as an adjective. It is rather literary, but you can say "On either side of the castle, there was a tower, so there were two towers, one on either side." But of course either can mean "one only," as in "You can have either a chocolate or a caramel," which clearly means not both. I looked it up in my dog-eared abridgement of Webster's 2nd, which says: "-- adj. ... 1. Each of two; the one and the other; as, danger on either side. 2. One or the other; as, take either road." But then "-- pron[oun]. One of two, the one or the other." So, IF JK is using the same dictionary I am (highly unlikely, I suppose) and not extending the adjectival meaning (which seems to be dual) on to the pronoun (which Webster says is only one or the other), then Harry is safe, unless Annika is right and Voldemort meets a fate worse than death, in which case one of them still has to die.

As for the plural antecedent, I just mean that you have to have talked about two things for "either" or "neither" to refer back to. If you look at the example above, you've got two sides, two towers, two roads. Put another way, you cannot say "He has a power and either of them will die." It has to be two powers, quite apart from the question of whether a writer like JK would write about powers dying. As Solitaire's posting makes clear, the only other plural antecedent besides Voldemort and the One is "those," i.e., Harry's (I assume) parents.

"Other" on the other hand (why do I keep doing that!) is singular, like one. So either (one or both of 2) must die at the hand of the other (1), could mean three people, supposing the One and Voldemort were referred back to by either, and the other refers to someone else, like Dudley Dursley. But I don't think so, because it would be inartistic to allude to a person who had not previously been mentioned in the prophecy with so little fanfare. I think if she'd meant Dudley (or anyone more probable) she would have said "And Either will die at the hand of the Other, for Neither can live while the Other survives." It would look nice and archaic, and she could then go back and say, but the prophecy said "the Other."

And, actually, I think "for neither (clearly singular) can live while the other (singular) survives" is more puzzling, since it seems to me to be wrong!

Sorry this is so long!


weasley by nature - Aug 6, 2004 3:31 am (#88 of 601)

I was wondering if there are any translations that might reveal/eliminate solutions for the "What does the prophecy mean" question. Anybody who has any translations to post, even if they aren't sure what they mean would help. It seems like it would be impossible for some languages to translate the prophecy with all the same ambiguities.


Ann - Aug 6, 2004 5:26 am (#89 of 601)

Great idea! Has there been a discussion of this on the translations thread? I suggested elsewhere that translations might be a good test for anagrams, and people insisted that the discussion should be moved there. But if translations illuminate the prophecy, I think that discussion would fit here. The problem is, not all of the translations are well done, or done with direct input from JKR, so if the prophecy is clearer and less ambiguous, we can't tell whether we are getting her interpretation or that of the translator.


septentrion - Aug 6, 2004 6:36 am (#90 of 601)

I've read somewhere (TLC I guess) that JKR gave no input to HP translations, anyway here is the French one: -celui qui a le pouvoir de vaincre le Seigneur des TÈnËbres approche...il naÓtra de ceux qui l'ont par trois fois dÈfiÈ lorsque mourra le septiËme mois...et le Seigneur des TÈnËbres le marquera comme son Ègal mais il aura un pouvoir que le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ignore...et l'un devra mourir de la main de l'autre car aucun d'eux ne peut vivre tant que l'autre survit...Celui qui dÈtient le pouvoir de vaincre le Seigneur des TÈnËbres sera nÈ lorsque mourra le septiËme mois... The translation is rather near of the English text. But for the "either neither" sentence, the French wording is more like: "and one shall die at the hand of the other for neither of them can live while the other survives." I'm afraid the French translation isn't of a great help.
 
 



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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #91 to #120

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 3:52 pm

Note: some of the posts in this thread contain ‘the Prophecy’ as written in the French edition of the book. Some of the accent marks may not be accurate, but that is how they appeared in the archived document (.txt) after they were copied from World Crossing.

mrweasley - Aug 6, 2004 2:33 pm (#91 of 601)

Mhm. Do the translators get the background information from JKR that is necessary to translate those "vulnerable" parts adequately? I've always been wondering about that.

Ann, thanx for your great post on the either/neither problem. It is definitely a good foundation and reference point for further discussion!

I think especially the possibility of "the other" being neither Harry nor Voldemort, but a third person, is kind of fascinating, no?

And I still can't help thinking that the "Dark Lord" wording is more important than we've so far discussed... JKR could've used any of the other expressions, right?


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 6, 2004 2:51 pm (#92 of 601)

Could there be another Dark Lord?


Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 6, 2004 3:15 pm (#93 of 601)

There probably has been another Dark Lord - it's just an arrogant title for evil people... but I doubt there's one right now...


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 6, 2004 3:21 pm (#94 of 601)

The rest of the prophecy matches Voldemort anyway.


contess lillein asend - Aug 6, 2004 4:00 pm (#95 of 601)

I had a question? The Dork Lord is Tom Riddle/Voldemort. Will Harry become two also? I just wondered because I know we left the boy wonder wishing to be someone else and I remember Hagrid saying in the very begining that Harry would not even recognize himself after 7 years at Hogwarts? Just wondering?

Or is that the twin thing again?


Solitaire - Aug 6, 2004 4:12 pm (#96 of 601)

Ouch, Contess! That question makes my head hurt!


contess lillein asend - Aug 6, 2004 4:48 pm (#97 of 601)

YOUR HEAD....you should be in here....


Solitaire - Aug 6, 2004 10:02 pm (#98 of 601)

LOL Contess! JKR and that prophecy make my head hurt. I teach language arts, so clear pronoun-antecedent use is very important to me... what can I say?

I realize JKR worded her prophecy that way on purpose, so that wiseguys like those of us here at the Forum are kept off balance. But I spent so many hours yesterday dissecting that prophecy, reading the posts, and trying to split hairs... my brain is tired and just possibly a little addled. I feel like someone has performed too many memory charms on ME!

Solitaire


Her-melanie - Aug 8, 2004 8:39 am (#99 of 601)

I will try my hand now. To me, the main mysterious question is about 'either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives.' I interpret that as: If one of them attacks the other one, that one must DIE, and not survive the attack. I don't think it necessarily means anyone MUST kill anyone; only that if killing is attempted by one or the other, the victim must actually die. That would explain the use of the word 'survive'. It may also explain why Voldemort essentially, physically dies when he first attacks Harry as a baby. We know he can't fully die, and his spirit lives, but as much as he CAN die, he does. Regarding this interpretation, I posted in another thread that it may be related to DD's triumphant gleam. If Voldemort used Harry's blood to make a new body, that means that if Voldemort kills Harry, a part of Harry survives within Voldemort. If the prophecy is read as I have suggested, then Voldemort would die too since a part of Harry survives. I do agree though that there can be several interpretations of the prophecy, and JKR did that intentionally to be ambiguous. I also don't agree with those that take the pronouns to mean the indication of a third party. The reason for the ambiguity of the pronouns is because at the time of the prophecy, the second person's identity is not known. I also don't believe "die" means anything but real mortal death. I don't believe it refers to powers. I don't have anything within the wording that leads me to believe that, though. To me, as long as any part of Voldemort exists, he always will have the potential to return to power. He needs to be killed in every way. That is an interesting point about the ellipses. I tend to think JKR knows her grammatical rules, and it may be that DD is leaving something out purposefully.


Ann - Aug 8, 2004 9:13 am (#100 of 601)

Printed ellipses only mean something is left out when you are quoting something in print, and while the prophecy is quoted to us in print by JKR, Harry hears it as spoken, and therefore nothing is left out. (You can't really indicate an ellipsis when speaking without saying "dot, dot, dot" or something.) Given that we see things from Harry's perspective, I cannot imagine that Harry would be told important things without the reader being informed. Printed dots are also a convention to indicate a broken phrase, trailing off at the end. (Think of the way an actress would read the line "Oh, I don't know...") Also, Trelawney's Second Prophecy also has frequent ellipses, and there is no evidence of stuff left out there.

The idea that "either must die at the hand of the other" does not refer to murder but to the death of the attacker seems to me a very weird reading of the more straightforward parts of the prophecy. To die at the hand of someone means to be killed by them. One (or, conceivably, each) will be killed by the other. The fact that Harry and Voldemort seem to have bits of each other inside them, forging a connection, may affect the way this all plays out, of course.


Her-melanie - Aug 8, 2004 9:46 am (#101 of 601)

I don't mean it quite the way you interpreted, Ann. What I am focusing on is hard to explain. 'Either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives.' If we substitute "for" with "because" it means the two parts of the statement are causal. 'Either must die at the hand of the other BECAUSE neither can live while the other survives.' It puts the focus on 'survive'. If 'neither can live while the other survives' an attack, then it follows that if one attacks the other, and that would-be victim SURVIVES THE ATTACK, something will happen to the attacker. This has already happened once, when Harry was a baby. I don't know if I am explaining it clearly. Probably not; it's difficult.


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 8, 2004 10:32 am (#102 of 601)

I agree with you, Her-melanie


Her-melanie - Aug 8, 2004 10:39 am (#103 of 601)
Edited by S.E. Jones Aug 16, 2004 11:14 pm

Thanks!


Ann - Aug 8, 2004 11:21 am (#104 of 601)

Sorry, I still don't agree. I do see what you are arguing now (it made no sense at all to me initially; not enough coffee, perhaps).

I actually find the second part of the statement the most troubling (as I've said above), because on the surface it means that both can't live at the same time. You are trying to fix that (which I appreciate!) by saying that it is only when the other survives an attack that "neither can live" -- in other words, that simply being alive is not enough to make the other die, you have to survive an attack by the other. But Harry has survived attacks by Voldemort, several times over, and yet Voldemort is still living, or maybe again living. Actually, I think he was alive during his vaporish stage; he just didn't have the body. And if Voldemort survived, by your theory, it is surprising that Harry is alive!

Moreover, I think you can't ignore the first part of the statement, which says that one (or, less probably, each) has to die at the hand of the other. The explanation following "for" is there to explain why they can't just learn to live together. And I suspect that "live" here has to be shorthand for "live without fear and interference" or something of that sort.


Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 8, 2004 11:27 am (#105 of 601)

I agree with Ann. I think the prophecy is completely capable of being taken at face value.


schoff - Aug 8, 2004 11:36 am (#106 of 601)

I think the prophecy is written so vaguely that we really can't make too much out of it until we have more information.

I really think there *is* some double-meaning to some part of the prophecy. Something that will be an "AHA!" moment when it is explained, making absolutely everything clear. Perhaps Harry will realize what it is at the last moment, and it will be the method he needs to vanquish Voldemort once and for all. Why would JKR go through all the trouble of wording it so ambiguously if it didn't hold some sort of answer for us? She didn't make this much effort for the Second one. The First Prophecy is simply too big of a plot point to be taken at mere face value.

I like your idea, Her-melanie.


Richard!!!Reid - Aug 8, 2004 11:43 am (#107 of 601)

Yip, sounds good. JKR wrote it like that so no-one could be sure of the real meaning. Very clever.


zelmia - Aug 8, 2004 12:15 pm (#108 of 601)

Septentrion, do you have any idea why the French translation (which I agree with you is pretty much exact from the English) uses "ignore"?

["celui qui a le pouvoir de vaincre le Seigneur des TÈnËbres approche...il naÓtra de ceux qui l'ont par trois fois dÈfiÈ lorsque mourra le septiËme mois...et le Seigneur des TÈnËbres le marquera comme son Ègal mais il aura un pouvoir que le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ignore...et l'un devra mourir de la main de l'autre car aucun d'eux ne peut vivre tant que l'autre survit...Celui qui dÈtient le pouvoir de vaincre le Seigneur des TÈnËbres sera nÈ lorsque mourra le septiËme mois..."]

I just wonder about that because that is the only word in the French translation that doesn't appear to be literal. The English has "knows not" there. I was curious because it seems to me that the French have translated that more as "But he will have a power that the Dark Lord will overlook" or something similar.


Her-melanie - Aug 8, 2004 12:20 pm (#109 of 601)

'On the surface it means that both can't live at the same time.' If that is what it means, then how are they both living now? I think it suggests some action that one of them will take, and I think it will end up being something Voldemort does, not knowing the full prophecy, which will be his own downfall. Either that, or something Dumbledore figures out, based on the prophecy, that will be the end of Voldemort.


Her-melanie - Aug 8, 2004 12:41 pm (#110 of 601)

Thanks for the support, schoff:)


Hollywand - Aug 8, 2004 12:55 pm (#111 of 601)

Hey, Zelmia, thanks for the French translation.

The word "overlook" has fantastic potential.

Classically, witches were thought to have power just in their gaze. One charge people commonly brought to the court was that "they had been overlooked by the accused witch" meaning that the gaze of the witch had cursed them. I got this little detail from reading about witch trials in England in the sixteenth century.

We know that Harry's eyes and Voldy's eyes are key to the story. When you think about it, the gaze is also key to Occlumency, isn't it?

In English these days, the word "overlook" carried the impression a detail has been forgotten. But not for the meaning assigned to the witch’s gaze.....


zelmia - Aug 8, 2004 1:19 pm (#112 of 601)

Well, I would wait to see what the NATIVE French speakers have to say, but:

In Septentrion's citation, the literal translation for the line "mais il aura un pouvoir que le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ignore" is "but he will have a power that the Lord of Darkness ignores."

The word "ignore" can be interpreted in English as "knows not" or "is unaware of" or the quite literal "ignores" or, as I suggested "overlooks" (obviously a synonym for ignores). I don't think there is really much of anything to the use of the word "ignore" there other than to keep with the sort of poetic element to it. Still, I can't help but wonder why not use "ne sait pas" (meaning 'does not know', 'knows not') instead? "Mais il aura un pouvoir que le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ne sait pas..."


Detail Seeker - Aug 8, 2004 1:27 pm (#113 of 601)

"Knows not" is a passive process, while "ignore" is an active one. This seems to me to be the important difference, here. There are many reasons for not knowing (about) something, while ignoring says as much as "I do not want to know". This might say something more about the nature of said power, if we could take this difference as based on information by JKR.

As love and hatred are the two sides of one power, we can either conclude, that love is not the power ignored by LV, because he does hate. Otherwise, we would have to conclude, that he doesn’t even really hate.

So, which else could it be?


zelmia - Aug 8, 2004 1:31 pm (#114 of 601)

Excellent point, Detail Seeker. Which is I guess exactly why that particular choice of words in the French translation stuck out to me. I think you are on to something.


Madame Librarian - Aug 8, 2004 1:53 pm (#115 of 601)

Arrrrggghhh! Maybe we should try for an Esperanto translation!

"Ignore" and "overlook" to me are similar where as "knows not" stands a bit apart. The two former words connote in ordinary English a sense that the information is there right in front of you, or at least not hidden or arcane. "Knows not" implies that the information is not available, never was. It is hidden and a secret. As Detail Seeker noted in one case the person (Voldemort in this case) had it right there, but brushed it off, or had a fit of stupidity, looked right at it, but got distracted, lost focus, chose to discount it, whatever. That is "active" in that someone could have done something but didn't, there was action to be taken. The second construction, the one that we see in the English version, is a situation where the information isn't even there, it's passive -- there's no decision, nothing to miss.

Admittedly I am not at all certain that the one used for the French translation does not have a similar connotation. Identical words in different languages very often take on subtle shifts of meaning.

We have heard in other instances that JKR is not consulted about the particulars of the various translations. I am inclined to stick to the original English versions when we are taking a close look at each individual word in a certain key section, such as in the Prophecy.

Also, one last little thing that isn't terribly apt, but curious. It's ironic that "overlook" -- to miss, to omit, to ignore -- means the opposite of "look over." In the more formal or archaic usage (as in Hollywand's information of the witch trials) they were closer in meaning. To illustrate and beat a dead horse, here is an example of what I mean --

Person 1 -- "Darn it! I made a calculation error in these accounts because I overlooked the 3rd column of figures."

Person 2 -- "No matter. I corrected everything when I looked over your work before submitted it to the boss."

Ancient witch who time-travelled to the present and is eavesdropping on these two fellows -- "Aye. In days of yore, ye'd be sure o'erlook'd with scorn for such dunderheadedness. If t'was the Laird's purse for counting, ye'd sure be thrown off yon overlook with nary a care."

(Oi, I squeaked in another meaning.)

Enough!

Ciao. Barb


Ann - Aug 8, 2004 2:10 pm (#116 of 601)

Admittedly I am not at all certain that the one used for the French translation does not have a similar connotation. Identical words in different languages very often take on subtle shifts of meaning.

My French/English dictionary lists for the French "ignorer" "to be ignorant of, not to know, not to be aware of, to be unconscious of." And for the English "ignore," it has "Feindre d'ignorer [to pretend not to know]; ne tenir aucun compte de [not to take any account of]; ne pas vouloir reconnaitre [not to want to recognize]. So you are right, it is a "false friend," or so it seems to another non-native speaker of French.


zelmia - Aug 8, 2004 3:46 pm (#117 of 601)

Yes, mine says that too, Ann. But that's part of the reason why I suggested waiting for input from the actual French people.


MrsGump - Aug 8, 2004 6:00 pm (#118 of 601)

"... at the hand of the other..."

I'm sure we've talked about "the other" being a third person. Have we talked about that person being Wormtail? He does have a nice, shiny new hand, and he does owe Harry his life.

My gut reaction is to just say it's a coincidence. But since we're looking closely at the wording, I just thought I'd throw it out there.


zelmia - Aug 8, 2004 6:12 pm (#119 of 601)

We have, Mrs Gump. I think most people have kind of ruled it out as a possibility. Still, the ambiguity of the Prophecy keeps it in the running.


Hollywand - Aug 8, 2004 7:45 pm (#120 of 601)

Zelmia, if you could be so kind as to recap why Wormtail's hand is not a favored possibility I would be very grateful. I have not seen that argued and would be very interested. Thanks!!!
 
 



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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #121 to #150

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 3:55 pm

Note: some of the posts in this thread contain ‘the Prophecy’ as written in the French edition of the book. Some of the accent marks may not be accurate, but that is how they appeared in the archived document (.txt) after they were copied from World Crossing.

zelmia - Aug 8, 2004 11:39 pm (#121 of 601)

Uh... No, thanks, Hollywand. But you're welcome to use the Search function and look for it -- as I just did. It will lead to a rather extensive list of posts where this part of the discussion is mentioned. I suppose this is what I was getting at in my earlier post.

I recall seeing that particular aspect (Wormtail's new hand) mentioned numerous times all over different threads of the Forum. It was also my impression that a certain percentage of folks had decided it wasn't really a factor in the Prophecy; but obviously, there are also lots of people think it might be. I am not staking a claim either way.


Elanor - Aug 9, 2004 12:43 am (#122 of 601)

Hi! I've just read what you have posted concerning the word 'ignorer' in French, and I may help you as I am French! So, I've searched in my dictionary (not an English-French one, but an encyclopedic one -- BTW, the difficult part is that I have to translate this back in English, so I hope I won't betray its meaning!).

Ignorer comes from the Latin ignorare which means: not to know and not to want to recognize something. In French, it means:

1) not to know 2) to ignore (someone..., similar to be indifferent) 3) not to be experienced in

As I understand it in the prophecy, it means "not to know": Voldemort just can't learn about this power for it is out of his reach because he has to eradicate all humanity in himself.

I also think the translator wanted to use an elevated language. But, still, it is interesting for he could have translated it by "il aura un pouvoir don’t le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ne sait rien" which could have been high-level language too. Well, the nuance is really thin, but, for me, you find in "ignore" something stronger and more definitive.

I don't know if it was clear, as my English is far from being perfect I'm not sure at all it was, just tell me, I'll try again if it wasn't!


Steve Newton - Aug 9, 2004 6:08 am (#123 of 601)

Elanor it sounds as if you did a good job translating. Thanks!


Cezar Salem - Aug 9, 2004 9:24 am (#124 of 601)

I was taking a shower, just after reading in the forum (more specifically this thread) when something came to me! I was thinking of how Harry could only be killed by Voldemort, and if he kills Voldy he would be immortal... I thought that would be totally contradictory, seen as DD himself says its a terrible thing to be immortal... So why would JK do this to Harry, why would she give him a power that she herself( as she says that sometimes she speaks through DD) says is terrible, especially after such a great victory... And I came to this conclusion: She didn’t!!! After thinking the wordings in my head and repeating this line over and over again: either must die by the hand of the other, for neither can live while the other survives... either must die by the hand of the other that means that one of them HAS to kill the other: either Harry kills Voldy or Voldy kills Harry, that doesn’t mean that if Harry kills Voldie that someone else afterwards can’t kill Harry, because one of them will already have died by the hand of the other... only one of them has to die by the hand of the other not both... Did I explain it right? If you don’t understand please say, I really want to try and make myself understood...

On the other hand, (lots of hands huh Smile) The prophecy also states that Harry is the only one that can defeat the DL so if Voldie does kill Harry, bye-bye world and welcome immortality to Voldie (but the other way around no, because Harry would then be able to be killed by someone else...)

Last time! That also means then that Harry is unable to be killed by anyone but Voldie while Voldie is alive ...


Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 9, 2004 9:32 am (#125 of 601)

That's correct, I think. But it is interesting that if the Prophecy is taken literally, Harry shouldn't worry about physical safety at all as long as Voldemort is alive, and neither should Voldemort. Although I suppose he could still be horribly maimed...


Ann - Aug 9, 2004 10:16 am (#126 of 601)

But, of course, we're told that 'Divination is a very inexact science' (or something like that). If I were Harry, I wouldn't count on it. Nor should Voldemort (although he doesn't know it, which is probably just as well).


mrweasley - Aug 9, 2004 3:33 pm (#127 of 601)

Very true Ann, and even Firenze says towards the end of PS that divination - he is of course referring to the more advanced kind of centaur astrology and not to tea leaf reading - can not totally be relied on.

On the other hand, just the fact that Trelawney's second genuine prophecy became a reality makes it seem very likely that we can also expect her first prophecy to become real.


MrsGump - Aug 9, 2004 4:16 pm (#128 of 601)

If only LV can kill Harry, and Harry kill LV, and both are safe until this happens... Wouldn't LV's best option be to not kill Harry? Protect him? Capture him and keep him captive and safe?

It's the "neither can live while the other survives" part that bothers me and would also mess up this theory.


Cezar Salem - Aug 9, 2004 4:25 pm (#129 of 601)

MrsGump, not really because it also states that the one with the power to defeat him is Harry, so if Harry is dead then no one else can beat him… so why keep the only person that can kill you captive? That actually would seem a Voldie thing to do… the best option would be to kill Harry... then no one else would be able to kill him (Voldie). (Gosh almost sounded like I am against Harry!!! But I’m not, okay!? Go Harry!!!!!!


zelmia - Aug 9, 2004 4:30 pm (#130 of 601)

Merci, Elanor pour votre aide! Your thoughts seem to coincide with mine.

Okay so let me try to explain this simply and concisely. There is a very subtle distinction between Connaitre ("to know" in the sense of familiarity or experience) and Savoir ("to know" in the sense of factual information). One knows (savoir) the capital of France is Paris. But one knows (connaitre) one's neighbors.

Now, the French translation cited uses "ignorer" (to know, to be aware of) which follows the line of "connaitre" rather than "savoir".

So basically, according to the French translation of the Prophecy, "a Power the Dark Lord knows not" is actually "a Power the Dark Lord is not familiar with or has no experience of" rather than "a Power the Dark Lord doesn't know exists". That seems pretty significant. But then again, it may just be some high-falootin' mumbo jumbo...


MrsGump - Aug 9, 2004 6:01 pm (#131 of 601)

Cezar Salem:

You said "either must die by the hand of the other that means that one of them HAS to kill the other either Harry kill Voldy or Voldy kill Harry, that doesn’t mean that if Harry kills Voldie that someone else afterwards cant kill Harry, because one of them will already has died by the hand of the other..."

So, by this reasoning, once Harry is killed by LV, then someone else could kill LV. That is what I was referring to when I said it would then be in LV's interest to keep Harry alive. They would both be immortal.


Siriusly - Aug 9, 2004 6:13 pm (#132 of 601)

I got it! Good thought!


Cezar Salem - Aug 9, 2004 6:13 pm (#133 of 601)

No not really, because as I said before the prophecy also states that "the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord" is Harry, and as DD said himself (JKR said she speaks through him sometimes) and Harry alone has the power. It doesn’t work the other way around, if Harry killed Voldemort someone could now kill Harry. But if Harry dies no one else can kill Voldemort. It would be Harry’s best interest to keep Voldie alive because then he would be immortal, but I am sure he doesn’t want immortality because it’s something bad for him. But it would be Voldemort’s best interest to kill Harry because then no one else would be able to vanquish him... just reread my post before this one... So I assume that Harry is safe from everyone but Voldemort (great thing that is, since it's exactly Voldemort that wants him dead) as long as Voldemort is alive, but Voldie is safe from everyone but Harry as long as Harry is alive and safe from EVERYONE as long as Harry is dead... One could even go as far as say that Harry could actually be killed even with Voldemort alive as long as he figured out a way to kill him afterwards... If you don’t understand what I am saying (even I don’t sometimes) please tell me and I will try again...


Ann - Aug 9, 2004 7:49 pm (#134 of 601)

I understand what you are saying, but I don't think it's right. Harry is pretty clearly "the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord," but that doesn't mean that there will never be another one with that power. It does look to me as if only Voldemort can kill Harry, and only Harry can kill Voldemort at this point, so as long as they are both alive they are safe from everyone else. But as soon as one is killed, the other is vulnerable. And, if I were Harry, I wouldn't go throwing myself in front of any trains. Not only are prophecies not always reliable, but they are famous for meaning something different than you think they mean. (Voldemort's hand would probably somehow be involved in the train hitting him.)


The Wandless Wizard - Aug 9, 2004 7:57 pm (#135 of 601)
Edited by Aug 9, 2004 8:58 pm

Voldemort's hand would probably somehow be involved in the train hitting him.

If Voldemort never turned evil, nobody would have had to vanquish him. If nobody needed to vanquish him, there wouldn't have been a prophecy. If there wasn't a prophecy, Harry would not have though himself nearly immortal. If Harry hadn't thought himself nearly immortal, he wouldn't have been so foolish to throw himself in front of the train. If he wasn't so foolish to throw himself in front of the train, Harry wouldn't have died. So Voldemort turns evil --> he needs to be vanquished --> prophecy about the one who vanquishes him --> Harry thinks he's immortal --> Harry jumps in front of a train --> Harry dies. Shortened down Voldemort turns evil--> Harry dies. Then the prophecy is fulfilled in a very odd way. Tricky creatures, prophecies, never trust them.


Elanor - Aug 9, 2004 11:15 pm (#136 of 601)

Hi Zelmia! Merci beaucoup! The nuances you give concerning the difference between 'connaÓtre' et 'savoir' are correct and interesting. I think there are at least three ways of translating "a Power the Dark Lord knows not" in French:

- un pouvoir que le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ignore

- un pouvoir don’t le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ne sait rien

- un pouvoir que le Seigneur des TÈnËbres ne connaÓt pas

The last translation may be closer to "not to know" but it is a more common way of saying it: maybe the translator wanted to give the sentence a more solemn tone by using "ignorer". And, in French, a negative sentence with "ne... pas" or "ne... rien" is heavier than an affirmative sentence (as with ignorer), and therefore is less powerful: it has something to do with the "musicality" of the language, this is more elegant.

But, you're right, the nuance could also have a meaning. If it means "the Dark Lord is not familiar with or has no experience of" rather than "a Power the Dark Lord doesn't know exists" as you said, this is really interesting. That suggests that this is a power Voldemort may have been aware of but has always underestimated and despised, but that power could become his "Achilles' heel". He has already been defeated by such a power when Lily sacrificed herself: he admitted himself he had made a mistake then. I think the power Harry has is one of the same sort as his mother's: DD said it is his heart, his humanity - all the things Voldemort despises - that make him special.

Now, the question is: how Harry could possibly use this power? I don't know, but it is my feeling that if he could give Voldemort just a hint of humanity back, this could be his end: he couldn't bear it.


zelmia - Aug 10, 2004 12:24 am (#137 of 601)

Elanor, je suis completement d'accord! I agree with you 100% In fact, the only thing that would make me happier would be if I could remember the correct keystrokes to be able to "type in French".


MrsGump - Aug 11, 2004 5:47 am (#138 of 601)

Cezar Salem,

I understand what you are saying now, but I agree with Ann. I don't think we have two sets of rules (i.e. Harry can be killed after but LV can't).

I wasn't very happy with DD's "I'm going to tell you everything" because I still feel like he left too much information out. I guess we are meant to not understand the whole thing until book 7.


Elanor - Aug 11, 2004 11:12 pm (#139 of 601)

Thanks Zelmia! I know it is difficult to type in another language: I am doing mistakes all the time! BTW: I love your new avatar. I haven't seen the movie, but it reminds me of a French film called "Les triplettes de Belleville" (I don't know if it has an English title). Is this a picture taken from this film?


Siriusly - Aug 12, 2004 3:08 pm (#140 of 601)

Here is my stab at it:

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies.. and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not (marked person)... and either (marked and unmarked person) must die at the hand of the other (Volde) for Neither (marked and unmarked person) can live while the other (Volde) survives (really live, as who they are, fully live)...The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies (unmarked person... notice "born to those who have thrice defied him" is missing.)

I think there are two, one marked, one unmarked, working in unison.

Just a thought.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 12, 2004 7:50 pm (#141 of 601)

Siriusly, are you saying that either Harry or Neville must die, then the survivor will kill Voldy, thus fulfilling the prophecy?


Siriusly - Aug 13, 2004 5:25 am (#142 of 601)

No. I was trying to say, marked or unmarked, or Volde must die.


LooneyLuna - Aug 13, 2004 5:47 am (#143 of 601)

Ooh, I like that theory. Harry and Neville (marked and unmarked) will vanquish the Dark Lord together or die trying.

Good one!


HP Sleuth - Aug 14, 2004 4:30 pm (#144 of 601)

That's certainly interesting, Neville and Harry working without Ickle Ronniekins and Insufferable Know-It-All Hermione on an adventure for once. Maybe Loony and Ginevra would be there? Anyways, by the sounds of the prophecy, "And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal...for neither can live while the other survives" This sounds like both Tom and Harry are not their whole selves, like they are only half of themselves, I guess. I know the laws of physics and magic don't mix very well, but 1/2 + 1/2 = 1, so when either Harry or Tom dies, then the other gets their entire self. So that might imply that their other half selves are er...... in somewhere else.

Also, this reminds me of a book I once read a long time ago that I don't remember the name of, but it was about this woman who had twin girls, and one of the twins was pure evil, and had green eyes (in my analogy, this is obviously Voldemort), and the other was pure good and had blue eyes (Harry). They grow up together, and as they grow, their powers for evil and good, respectively, get stronger, and nearing the end of the book, the evil one's powers get so great the she starts harming people. The good twin's powers are great enough that she can heal the people that her twin harms. Eventually, the evil twin wants the good twin dead, so she sneaks up behind the good one on top of a tall building and tries to push her off, but the good twin turns around and sees her coming, and decides that the evil twin has to die, so she moves out of the way and the evil twin runs off the edge of the building and dies. But ever since she killed her twin, the good twin had two different colored eyes, one green and one blue. And at the very end, the author explained that pure good or pure evil cannot be on this earth, and heaven only created the good and evil twins to illustrate this point. Whew!! Well, that detailed explanation was probably not necessary, but I was rather hoping that one of the librarians among us could tell us what book this is. Well, "and either must die at the hands of the other, for neither can live while the other survives." I just fried my brain typing that up, so I'm going to go unfry it, if that’s even possible....

EDIT: In this book, the mother always sticks around for them, (DD?), the father, after several years of the evil twin, can't take it anymore and runs off (Igor? Also, I'm not saying he was a bad father, but anyone living with a spirit that is pure evil would crack after sometime, I bet the mother would have too, after a while). Also, after the father runs off, the house collapses, because there isn't enough good in the house or something to counteract the evil of the evil twin, so the mother invites the local priest to live with them, just to counteract the evil (Sirius or Lupin?). I don't exactly remember the very fine details. Oh, yeah, the twins names were, I believe, good twin-Angelica and evil twin-Diabolica. Something like that, anyways.


zelmia - Aug 14, 2004 5:22 pm (#145 of 601)

Well if you're saddled with a name like Diabolica, your fate's kind of already mapped out for you.


Ozymandias - Aug 14, 2004 5:56 pm (#146 of 601)

But when you think about it, JKR uses that kind of names for her characters. How could anyone name their child Remus Lupin and not expect him to become a werewolf? Same goes for Narcissa-let's give our daughter a name that is guaranteed to make her as vain as possible. JKR uses names to give us a glimpse into her characters.

Hmm, maybe we should look at names in conjunction with the prophecy. Voldemort=flight from death in French. Will he be the one who lives?


Ann - Aug 14, 2004 6:25 pm (#147 of 601)

Well he chose the name, and we know he's terrified of dying. I always thought he probably particularly liked it because French names sound aristocratic and elite (going back to the Norman Conquest, I guess), in contrast to Riddle, which doesn't. And also because the "mort" part sounds scary, which is probably why JKR objects to Voldie. (She just says she's joking.) But I do wonder what his mates at school thought about his assuming the "Lord" part! You can just see him swooping around at 15 in the Slytherin common room, and the others rolling their eyes...

(Wrong thread...I know...I'll stop.)


LooneyLuna - Aug 15, 2004 5:47 am (#148 of 601)

HP Sleuth - I really like your idea of the halves becoming a whole or that the part of Voldemort/Tom Riddle needs to come out of Harry (through his scar, perhaps). And I suppose that since Voldemort took Harry's blood, that needs to come back to Harry so he will be whole.


Madame Librarian - Aug 15, 2004 8:35 am (#149 of 601)

HP Sleuth, I just did a quick library data base search (from home, so I'm a bit limited) for that book you remembered about the good twin/evil twin. Nothing came up so far, but there's a wonderful db called NoveList that I can only access at the library (plus I'll ask those wonderful humans called Children's Librarians) that I won't get to till Tuesday. So I am e-mailing myself a reminder to continue sleuthing on your behalf. Stay tuned...

Ciao. Barb


Madame Librarian - Aug 17, 2004 7:33 am (#150 of 601)

G'day, HP Sleuth, I found it! The book you mentioned on post #145 is Angela and Diabola by Lynn Reid Banks. Here's the description--

click here

Ciao. Barb
 
 

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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #151 to #180

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:06 pm


Siriusly - Aug 17, 2004 12:14 pm (#151 of 601)

You name your kid Diabola, what do you think is gonna happen? HAHA


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 17, 2004 5:52 pm (#152 of 601)

LoonyLuna, I think you might be on the right trail here, "through his scar, perhaps".

I going to stick my neck out without any backup right now, but have always felt that scar was a kind of, hmm, portal, for lack of a better word right now. Portal meaning "A grand and imposing entrance (often extended metaphorically)"

Book one, ""Yes," said Dumbledore. "He'll have that scar forever." More foreshadowing?


Solitaire - Aug 17, 2004 8:53 pm (#153 of 601)

I like the idea of the scar as a portal, Twinkles. It certainly opens up new possibilities. And it has, indeed, been a portal for Voldemort in the past books, hasn't it? Perhaps it will become a portal for Harry, in the other direction...?


Mete Ower - Aug 18, 2004 4:08 pm (#154 of 601)

The prophecy's been giving me a headache. So I took the only course of action possible: compile a list of every possible meaning of every part of the prophecy. I gave myself two restrictions. The "Dark Lord" stays the Dark Lord and I pretend I don't know anything about any of the characters in Harry Potter. The result is very interesting. At least now I can follow different prophecy theories without making my head explode.

1. The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...

1.a When you combine it with the phrase "born to those who have thrice defied him" this simply means, 'The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born soon.'

1.b The word "approaches" is meant to be taken literally. Dumbledore mentioned something about someone overhearing the prophecy. That person is the one "approaching" the room containing Trelawney and Dumbledore and is the one with the power to defeat the Dark Lord. This should basically read, 'The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord is coming upstairs.'

2. Born to those who have thrice defied him.

Note: "have" means that the defiance has already occurred three times but nothing indicates if the birth has already happened or not.

2.a As it is commonly believed, this means 'It’s a person birthed by parents that have defied the Dark Lord three times.'

2.b The plural form used here doesn’t exclude the possibility that this means 'They’re the babies birthed by parents that have defied the Dark Lord three times.' This is only possible if the babies put together make "the one".

2.c "Him" doesn’t refer to the Dark Lord but to "the one". The sentence should then read 'He is the child of parents that have defied him - the one with the power to defeat the Dark Lord- three times.' That would mean that the person exists already. The sentence looked awkward until I investigated the different definitions of the word "defy."

3. Born as the seventh month dies.

Note: The birth can still have already happened or be yet to come. It just has to be at the end of July. Also, the person born to "those that have thrice defied him" doesn’t have to be the same as the person "born as the seventh month dies." It can be the same person but since there was a comma this could be an enumeration since the rest of the phrases in the prophecy also split into fragments or uses vague pronouns. Fortunately, I haven’t seen anyone insist that this was the case as it makes me want to drive my head in a wall.

3.a Simply 'His birthday is at the end of July.'

3.b Still nothing to exclude the plural. This could read 'Their birthdays are the end of July.'

3.c In tarot, drawing the death card doesn’t mean you’re going to die. Thus, in a prophecy, "born" doesn’t necessarily mean a baby. It can mean a new beginning. Like, the "birth" of a champion doesn't mean the champion is a baby. Just that someone becomes a champion. So, 'He’ll become the one with the power to defeat the Dark Lord at the end of July.'

4. And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal.

Note: We know that the marking hasn’t happened yet but we don’t know when it will. For all we know, it still hasn’t happened. At least, now we know we’re talking about guys.

4.a 'The Dark Lord will give him some kind of mark that shows they’re equal.'

4.b Now, this gets a little more complicated. Let's say two babies were born at the end of July and that somehow together they are "the one." (Use 2.b and 3.b) Let’s call one 'Twiddle-dee' and the other 'Twiddle-dum'. The Dark Lord will mark Twiddle-dee and thus show that Twiddle-dee is the equal of Twiddle-dum. So 'The Dark Lord will give a mark to a baby and prove that he’s as good as the other baby.' Or, 'the Dark Lord will mark him (Twiddle-dee) as his (Twiddle-dum) equal.' Yes, I’m aware that this is insane.

5. But he will have power the Dark Lord knows not?

Note: We know that "he" will have power, we just don’t know when. Also the "him" in 4 doesn’t have to be the "he" in 5. It can be 'And the Dark Lord will mark Twiddle-dee as his equal but Twiddle-dum will have power the Dark Lord knows not.'

5.a 'but he will have a secret magic that the Dark Lord doesn’t know about.'

5.b 'but he will have some kind of magic the Dark Lord can’t do.'

6. and either must die at the hand of the other.

Alright. We have Twiddle-dee, Twiddle-dum and the Dark Lord. Let’s also add in (because this isn’t complicated enough, a random alien. Bonus: "at the hand" can either mean 'killed by' or actually mean 'near the hand'.

6.a 'The Dark Lord has to kill the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord or the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord must kill the Dark Lord.' So, either the Dark Lord kills Twiddle-dee or Twiddle-dee kills the Dark Lord. This is the version Dumbledore and Harry believe.

6.b 'Someone will kill either the Dark Lord or the person with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord.' A random alien, also known as "the other" , will kill Twiddle-dee or the Dark Lord. Fortunately, this doesn’t make any sense with the rest of the sentence.

6.c "the hand of the other" is a place. The important part here is the location. So, 'Once they are near the hand of the right person, either the Dark Lord or the person with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will die.'

6.d Say 4 and 5 refer to two different people. Either Twiddle-dee or Twiddle-dum must die at the hand of the Dark Lord. Once again, "at the hand" either means right besides the Dark Lord or killed by the hand of the Dark Lord. So, 'Either the one that has been marked at the Dark Lord's equal or the one with the power the Dark Lord knows not must die.' If this was the case, the sentence would probably be 'and either must die at the hand of the Dark Lord.'

6.e Once again, 4 and 5 refer to two different people. 'either Twiddle-dee must kill Twiddle-dum or Twiddle-dum must kill Twiddle-dee.' 'The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord has to kill the one that has been marked as his equal or vice-versa.'

7. "for neither can live while the other survives." Note: just substitute the right people at the right places and keep in mind that the "other" can be yet another different person.

7.a 'Neither can live while the other is still alive.' In other words, neither can have a normal life while the other is there.

7.b 'They will both die if one of them is not killed.'

8. 'The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies.'

Note: See 3 but this time note that the 'birth' hasn’t happened yet. Don't forget that being "born" doesn't necessarily mean babies.

With all of the different meanings the prophecy can take, I'm just not that confident in Dumbledore's claim that the prophecy is about Harry. I know that Harry has to be vital to the story (the books ARE named Harry Potter and the...) but does the prophecy have to be about him?

There's easily a way to formulate a scenario where both Harry and Neville are involved in the prophecy at the same time. But more interestingly, the word "approaches" used in the first sentence opens up a whole new world of possibilities.


Mete Ower - Aug 18, 2004 4:14 pm (#155 of 601)

(continued from post 154) Let's say that Severus Snape approached a certain door and over-heard a certain prophecy. Let's take the following pattern: 1.b -2.c -3.c -4.a -5.a -6.a -7.a. Don't worry, the "translation" of the prophecy is included.

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord (Severus Snape) is coming upstairs. He (Severus Snape) is the child of parents that have defied him (Severus Snape) three times. He’ll become the one with the power to defeat the Dark Lord at the end of July. The Dark Lord will give him some kind of mark (Death Eater tattoo) that shows they’re equal but he’ll have a secret magic (Occlumency) the Dark Lord doesn’t know about. Either the Dark Lord will kill him or he’ll kill the Dark Lord. For neither can live while the other survives. (Severus Snape can’t have a normal existence as long as he has the tattoo and the Dark Lord can’t have a normal existence if there’s warning every time he summons his Death Eaters.)

It doesn't stop here. What if Wormtail was the spy? Is a new hand considered a "mark?" Does *he* have a tattoo?

I think my head hurts again...


Steve Newton - Aug 18, 2004 5:11 pm (#156 of 601)

Would this mean that the newly revealed snippet could be the one approaching?


zelmia - Aug 18, 2004 5:24 pm (#157 of 601)

Now THAT is interesting! I don't know that it was necessarily Snape who overheard the Prophecy (best candidate, though). By the way: Yes, Wormtail does have the tattoo because Voldemort uses it to summon the DEs to the graveyard.

I think the only major problem that I can see with that interpretation is the same one I've been struggling with the entire time. We know that Rowling speaks through Dumbledore when she has something she really needs to tell the reader. And Dumbledore tells Harry "I'm afraid there can be no doubt that it is you. [to whom the Prophecy refers]." So how can we get around this?


Steve Newton - Aug 18, 2004 6:01 pm (#158 of 601)

Dumbledore may not be telling all that he knows or be incorrect. This is obviously a stretch. More thought is needed.


Mete Ower - Aug 18, 2004 6:51 pm (#159 of 601)

Dumbledore has been proven wrong before. He has made mistakes and frankly, everyone in the book seems to make wild assumptions about the prophecy. How can we even be sure that it's already happened? After all, "will be born as the seventh month dies" Doesn't tell us in what year.

Dumbledore sounds completely convinced that since Harry has the scar, then he's the one in the prophecy. And yet, "[Harry, talking about the prophecy]... did that mean... what did that mean?" "It meant," said Dumbledore (...)" (The Lost Prophecy, chapter 37 of OotP) It meant? Shouldn't that be it means? It could be that Dumbledore has a different interpretation of the prophecy now but for some reason can't tell Harry about it. Harry still has his scar. He is *very* important.

But I'm completely convinced that the prophecy doesn't have to be about Harry. (I'm not saying that it isn't - just that we can't be sure.)


Ann - Aug 19, 2004 5:28 pm (#160 of 601)

Mete Ower: Or, 'the Dark Lord will mark him (Twiddle-dee) as his (Twiddle-dum) equal.' Yes, I'm aware that this is insane.

Oh, good.... (Just kidding!)

Actually I think your two most radical ideas, that "approaches" might be meant literally and that it might be his own parents who defy the "one," are brilliant, and really require some thought.

The interpretations aren't quite as unlimited as you suggest, though. "The one" has pretty much got to be a single person, not two, by definition--one is one, not two. The two 'born's are participles, meaning verbs used to describe something; they must refer back to something that has been mentioned before (an antecedent), in this case to that "one" (since the Dark Lord has at this point only been mentioned in another descriptive clause "who has the power to vanquish the DL". In "The DL will mark him as his equal," "him" must be the one (if it was the DL, it would be himself) and his must be the DL (since marking the one as his own equal seems sort of pointless). Likewise "He will have power the DL knows not" has to refer back to the one, since there is no other antecedent except the DL, who doesn't know the power. And "Either (one of the two) must die at the hand of the other (the other of the two--if it was a third person, I think it would have been capitalized), for neither can live while the other survives (implying that one can live only if the other doesn't survive--yay! if it's Harry who lives!--but otherwise both will be unhappy, incomplete, only half alive). And the "for" (because) makes no sense if the "other" is a third person--it is supposed to be an explanation.

So the three ambiguous parts seem to me "approaches," "born," and (to a much smaller extent) "other." The problem comes when you apply it to the story: Voldemort hasn't marked anyone as his equal but Harry, that we know of (and completely hidden events aren't JKR's style). (Dark Mark tattoos actually mark DEs as Voldemort's subordinates.) So, by the process of elimination, he's got to be the "one." And I think that is what Dumbledore says. And JKR in her recent book signing chat said that Harry was at the center of the story, and essentially was the story, which I think makes it unlikely that the Prophecy involves anyone else, as a twin or as an "other."




riddikulus - Aug 22, 2004 1:13 pm (#161 of 601)

Perhaps the reason Voldy didn't die that day, was because of the protections he placed on himself along with the fact that Harry wasn't the right person in the prophecy. If Voldy can only be destroyed by "The one with the power" then maybe Harry didn't have that power. Of course, the second part of the prophecy changed everything. Voldy went and marked Harry, giving him the power and setting him on his course. AND either must die at the hand of the other. This could bring the Neville into the mix. Neither can live while the other survives... again... same scenario. Instead of saying, he. He must die... she breaks it with And. Of course, DD tells Harry regardless of who was, what is now is that it's You. Thus, like in Chamber where Harry learns his choices controlled his fate... he sees how others' choices did that too.


Ann - Aug 22, 2004 7:39 pm (#162 of 601)

The reason Voldemort didn't die that day, I think, is that if he died from the rebound of his own AK, he wouldn't be dying "at the hand of the other," but at his own hand. I put this long post on the "Edinburgh" thread this morning and Barb (a.k.a. Madame Librarian) suggested I post it here for further discussion. So I shall do so, with a few tiny edits for typos and clarifications that I only thought of afterwards. Sorry to be so very long-winded.

The idea that the prophecy itself has power is one I didn't like initially (when people were arguing this on several other threads), because it seems to me it is just someone saying what is going to happen--it shouldn't have any power in itself. (And there is always McGonagall's statement about it all being a very inexact sort of magic.) But when JKR said that the prophecy explains why Voldemort didn't die from his own AK at Godric's Hollow, it began to sound to me like she is envisioning a sort of religious system that includes predestination and fate--that is, a system that assumes the existence of God or Providence or a "higher power," as the self-help groups like to put it.

In such a system, the higher power has ordained certain things that will unavoidably happen. Usually these preordained outcomes are thought to leave some leeway for individual choice, since if our choices make no difference, there is no good or evil, and no point in trying to do anything. So they are simply a framework of events--the way they play out is up to individuals, but the eventual outcome is foreordained. A true prophecy, one that taps into the decisions made by that higher power, seems to have the power to bring about the preordained outcome; but it is actually the Providence behind the prophecy that has that power. Prophecies have no power of their own except insofar as they affect the actions of people who know about them. And prophecies are often phrased deceptively or ambiguously in ways that actually help bring about the preordained outcome, because people misunderstand them. That is what is meant by self-fulfilling: by its very existence, the prophecy manipulates people into doing things that will make what it predicts happen. (For examples, see the Oracles of Delphi, which are particularly good at this--and remember that JKR was trained as a classicist!)

So, assuming that "either must die at the hand of the other," is a true prophecy, and that it means that Voldemort and Harry must either kill the other or be killed by him, the prophecy has the effect of granting the two of them immortality--immunity from the attacks of anyone else--until the events that the prophecy predicts (really, the events that the higher power has decreed) come about. So Voldemort didn't die when his curse rebounded and Dumbledore can't kill him either, and knowing this, he doesn't try.

Voldemort assumes that some of his magical attempts to make himself immortal have worked, because he has never heard the "either must die" line of the prophecy. This is why it is so important that he not learn of it: he thinks he is immortal, since the AK didn't work, but actually he is still vulnerable to Harry, which he doesn't realize. He is overconfident in his ignorance. But how it plays out will depend on both their choices, and it is their choices that both make them who they are and result from who they are. Very profound stuff.


hellocello3200 - Aug 23, 2004 8:47 am (#163 of 601)

The part about both having immortality is interesting. Does that mean if Harry or LV tried to kill themselves, they couldn't? (Just hypothetical of course). Also, once one of them kills the other, is the survivor no-longer immortal? Maybe DD could kill LV after LV kills Harry. If that’s the case, DD would be in a moral predicament. He could let Harry die to save the lives of wizards and Muggles or wait for Harry grow up and then hope that Harry is able to kill LV. I guess Harry is lucky DD seems to be choosing the latter.


Siriusly - Aug 24, 2004 8:49 pm (#164 of 601)

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark lord approaches (Snape is coming down the hall), Born to those who have thrice defied him (maybe Snape's parents did not want to be DEs even though they were purebloods), Born as the seventh month dies (Snape B-day in July?), And the Dark lord will mark him as his equal (well he does have that Dark mark and DD said some of the DE were just as bad as Volde)and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives (Snape or Volde). The one with the power to vanquish the Dark lord will be born as the seventh month dies (Harry).

What if Snape was the spy that heard the beginning of the prophecy. Told Volde, but in the 15 months that it took for Volde to do something about it, Snape turned. He went to warn the Potter's, gave Harry his death stopper potion (prevents death), curse bounces, Voldemort becomes Vapormort, and Snape laughs. They know Volde is not gone, they have to cover Snape's tracks, so they make the fame and glory potion and give it to Harry. Now Snape did all the work and didn't get the Order of Merlin 1st class, didn't get rich and famous but the kid with "no extraordinary powers" did. Might tick a person off.

Maybe I have just been reading too much. Posted to another thread but it sounds so good to me after a 19-hour day that I put it here to. Got to be up at 5am. Good night all.

PS - was I the only one who had trouble logging on tonight. I had to go through World Crossing. I even tried TLC. Nothing would work


Cuivienen - Aug 25, 2004 8:46 am (#165 of 601)

Ignoring all of the "Snape theories" flying around...

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ...

The part I have bolded can be interpreted two ways:

1. Harry must kill Volde or vice versa. The obvious answer.

2. Harry or Volde must be killed by "the other" -- a third person mentioned only in this spot in the prophecy. The subtle answer.

If Trelawney (and JKR) worded the prophecy so specifically, why is there this ambiguity? This makes me think that the less-obvious second meaning for this line applies.

Also interesting is the use of "lives" and "survives" -- Both can survive while the other survives, but neither can live their full life while the other one is still alive. That seems to indicate a stronger Harry/Voldemort duality, that each is somehow part of the other in perhaps a greater sense than we yet know.


Prefect Marcus - Aug 25, 2004 9:55 am (#166 of 601)

Cuivienen - If Trelawney (and JKR) worded the prophecy so specifically, why is there this ambiguity?

Because Rowling chose to make it ambiguous to always leave us with the element of doubt.

I doubt that the prophecy means anything other than what it purports to say: Voldemort and Harry have to face off and only one will walk away.

She is just playing with our heads.:-)


Siriusly - Aug 25, 2004 1:06 pm (#167 of 601)

That's just it. The Snape/Volde battle has already taken place October 1981, now its Harry's turn.


Solitaire - Aug 25, 2004 11:17 pm (#168 of 601)

If Voldemort's little speech to his DEs in the graveyard scene of GoF (p. 656, US ed.) is accurate, he was NOT mortal before, but he is now, thanks to "the potion that revived me tonight--"

He tells them, "I was willing to embrace mortal life again, before chasing immortality. I set my sights lower ... I would settle for my old body back again, and my old strength."

This would lead me to believe that--for a time, at least, following the rebirth--Voldemort is mortal. If he was NOT mortal when he AK'd Harry as a baby, and the curse rebounded, he couldn't die. How can someone who is immortal die? If he IS mortal now, they need to get busy and vanquish him while it is possible!

Solitaire


Ann - Aug 26, 2004 3:08 pm (#169 of 601)

But Solitaire, does Voldemort really know what is going on? He is perplexed about why he survived the rebound of his AK curse, and assumes it is something he has done. But JKR said it had something to do with the prophecy--we should be able to work it out now that we know the prophecy.

So I don't think any of his arcane immortality provisions have worked at all. The prophecy says "either must die at the hand of the other"; so if Voldemort had died from the rebounding AK, he would be dying at his own hand, not Harry's. The prophecy says Harry (who was marked as the One from the moment the curse left Voldemort's wand) is the one who can kill Voldemort, so Voldemort can't even kill himself. Nor does Dumbledore try to kill him, since he knows he can't, and the result of Dumbledore's failure might be that Voldemort might realize that--a very bad thing.

(Harry, of course, is similarly invulnerable to anyone but Voldemort, which probably explains why he's survived his first five years at Hogwarts.) But once the prophecy has been fulfilled, one way or the other, the surviving "either" will go back to being plain old mortal, even if it's Voldemort.


hellocello3200 - Aug 26, 2004 6:17 pm (#170 of 601)

I posted awhile back a message similar to yours Ann. If Voldemort were to kill Harry, Dumbledore might be able to kill him. Perhaps Dumbledore has thought of this and is in a moral predicament. If he protects Harry and waits for him to grow up, many lives might be lost, but if he lets him get killed, Dumbledore can go and kill Voldemort himself. This is a little out there, but not illogical. DD seems to be choosing the first option.


schoff - Aug 26, 2004 7:30 pm (#171 of 601)

Ann: But JKR said it had something to do with the prophecy--we should be able to work it out now that we know the prophecy.

No, she said he survived due to something he had specifically done.

JKR:

"Why didn’t Voldemort die? The killing curse rebounded, so he should have died. Why didn’t he? At the end of Goblet of Fire he says that one or more of the steps that he took enabled him to survive. You should be wondering what he did to make sure that he did not die? I will put it that way. I don’t think that it is guessable. It may be someone could guess it, but you should be asking yourself that question, particularly now that you know about the prophecy."


riddikulus - Aug 26, 2004 7:53 pm (#172 of 601)
Edited by Aug 26, 2004 8:53 pm

Remember the stone was originally in a vault at Gringotts? I've been wondering why she discarded that first draft with it being in Harry’s parents vault... But nonetheless, it was in a vault. I wonder why? Why wasn't in the possession of Flamel or DD? Maybe it was stolen once, maybe Voldy was using it, prior to the AK and that might have enabled him to live and maybe 'someone' got it back... maybe Accio stoned it back, and they were able then to hide it, knowing Voldy would be looking for it again. I find it odd that he'd know it was in the vault (they tried to steal it) then go looking for it at Hogwarts. All too coincidental.


jmlmoo18 - Aug 27, 2004 4:19 pm (#173 of 601)

I was thinking along the same lines of pretty much everyone else on this board until I read Overlooked Meanings by Bobby Skelton on the Editorial page on Mugglenet just now. It really got me thinking. It has to do with what the "other" really means.


riddikulus - Aug 27, 2004 6:56 pm (#174 of 601)

jmlmoo, I really like it. For all those who haven't read it he feels that the wording should look like this: "AND EITHER HARRY OR VOLDEMORT MUST DIE AT THE HAND OF THE HBP FOR NEITHER HARRY NOR VOLDEMORT CAN LIVE WHILE THE HBP SURVIVES..."

Of course it makes as much sense as anything else I’ve read, but still doesn't clear up who the HBP is. When reading it, the only person who popped into my head was Snape. Yes, Snape. I think there's a reason DD keeps him around. You know the saying "keep your friends close and your enemies closer" I have no idea why he popped into my head... Cuivienen -nonetheless... I like it.


hopping hessian - Aug 28, 2004 5:14 am (#175 of 601)

I was just about to post on this theory. I find it interesting, but there's just one thing that bothers me about it. IMHO, the stories are about the fight between Voldy and Harry. In this reading of the prophecy, it seems as if Harry and Voldemort are on the same side. Why on earth would that be? Why would Harry be at odds with anyone who isn't Voldemort? Would it mean that Harry would have to kill Voldemort and sacrifice himself for the HBP to live?


Ann - Aug 28, 2004 10:32 am (#176 of 601)

schoff, you quote JKR ("You should be wondering what he did to make sure that he did not die. I will put it that way. I don’t think that it is guessable. It may be, someone could guess it, but you should be asking yourself that question, particularly now that you know about the prophesy.") But she follows that with: "I'd better stop there or I will really incriminate myself." In other words, her last statement, about the prophecy, was a huge hint.

I think what Voldemort did to make sure that he did not die was.. nothing.

As for this recurring idea that the other (not "the Other," you will note in the books) is the HBP or Snape or McLaggen or Ron, I don't think the prophecy supports that interpretation. It raises the question "the other what?" since no third party has been introduced; it implies, as hopping hessian point out, that Harry and LV are on the same side (and why would Neville or Snape or the HBP want to kill Harry?); and, supposing "the Other" is a third person, after he or she had killed LV, Harry still couldn't "live" until the hero of the hour, the "Other," had died, too. This last seems particularly inartistic, which JKR isn't. Also, it says "for," meaning because: Harry (or Voldemort) must kill Voldemort (or Harry), because neither can live while the other survives. "Harry or Voldemort must die at the hand of X, because neither of them can live while X survives" makes no sense at all. Having X killing one of them doesn't solve anything.

"Either one or the other" is standard English usage, and refers to two things or people, not three. Unless we suddenly get characters named "Professor Other" or "Minister Either" (which would be really inartistic besides being a dead giveaway), I think this interpretation highly unlikely.


popkin - Aug 28, 2004 12:20 pm (#177 of 601)
Edited by Aug 28, 2004 1:24 pm

The way I figure it, this is a complete list of characters who might possibly take a part in the prophecy:

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...

- The one who approaches
- The Dark Lord


Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies...

- Those who have thrice defied (How many are they? Are they a set of parents, two sets of parents, or two mothers?)
- Him - who was defied by 'Those'? (Most likely the Dark Lord, but not necessarily)


and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not...

- 'Him' soon to be marked by the Dark Lord,
- 'His' equal to 'Him' who will be marked
- 'He' with the power


and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

- Either (two characters)
- The hand
- The other
- Neither (probably the same two characters as 'either', but not necessarily)


The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..."

- The one who will be born (who may or may not also be the one who approaches)


Has your head exploded yet?


popkin - Aug 28, 2004 1:07 pm (#178 of 601)

If Dumbledore's explanation of the prophecy is accurate (if we can't trust Dumbledore, who can we trust?), then the first three lines are pretty clear-cut. Harry has the power to vanquish the Dark Lord. Harry approaches. Harry's parents have thrice defied the Dark Lord. Harry is born as the seventh month dies. The Dark Lord will mark Harry as his equal. Harry has power the Dark Lord knows not.

But, the fourth and fifth lines of the prophecy are very open to interpretation. So, here goes:

I think that the hand of the other is a hand owned by either Lord Voldemort or Harry, or by the mysterious other. On the old prophecy thread it was suggested that this hand could be the Hand of Glory, or Wormtail's hand. These are the only two disembodied hands we've met so far.

The other could be Neville - the other child born as the seventh month died. The other could be Grindelwald - the other Dark Lord. The other could be a character we now believe to be dead, but who has actually survived - perhaps transfigured into an object (like Crouch Sr. transfigured into a bone). The other could be the other sorcerer's stone - the one which was originally in Lily and James' vault. I personally think it's something which does not yet exist, because either and neither probably refer to Harry and Voldemort, so, since they are both living, the other is probably not surviving just yet.

The final line seems so tacked on, I think it must not refer back to Harry again. The only other person we know of who was born at the time the prophecy reveals is Neville. I think that Neville has his own special part to play in the prophecy - but not as the other.


riddikulus - Aug 28, 2004 1:28 pm (#179 of 601)

Oh my, going back to my earlier statement... I wasn't suggesting I thought "the other" was Snape lol I was saying... he popped into my head, for some odd reason. And honestly, at this point, discounting anything or anyone, seems crazy to me. My brother and I have a bet, from long ago that Snape would be a huge influence in the future and that Malfoy would be the head of the MOM (I took the bet, thinking that he was crazy lol) At this point, all I know for sure, is that I know very little. Every time I think, yes, this could be correct, someone says something to shoot it down, or disprove it or show light on it from an angle I didn't see, etc. As far as I can tell... either JKR is far more brilliant than most, or it's so simple and staring at us so plainly that we've tackle it and shot it down and moved on.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 28, 2004 1:31 pm (#180 of 601)

Popkin? Are you by any chance a seer? ..."perhaps transfigured into an object". Now this is a twist I can see happening. Of course, it would be a big help if you were alive when the transfiguration took place.

Possibly the other?

Edit: Gryffindor's sword comes to mind...
 
 


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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #181 to #210

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:07 pm


popkin - Aug 28, 2004 2:08 pm (#181 of 601)

Yes, Twinkling, it would help if you were alive when the transfiguration took place. I did not mean Crouch Sr. would be the other, but someone transfigured as he was could be. My bet goes to Regulus, or some other character whom we have heard is dead but whose body was never found.

Hey, it could even be Voldemort's twin. His mother could have transfigured the baby into an object so that s/he could have a different chance at life from her/his brother. Maybe the twin will end up on the Dursley's doorstep this summer - and be given the same chances and choices that Harry had. If another magical baby did turn up at the Dursley's (as the seventh month dies) I can see Uncle Vernon succeeding in strangling Harry - maybe Vernon's the other.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 28, 2004 2:18 pm (#182 of 601)

I'm chuckling all the way to St. Mungo's! My minds eye was playing that out as I read it just like a movie! I do so hope they don't put me in same ward as Lockhart, I can't stand join-up writing!


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 28, 2004 2:28 pm (#183 of 601)

Continued thought. If you can turn living things into water goblets, and not turn them back, then those "things" could sit for hundreds of years. At least until our Hermione came along and figured it out, esp. knowing "Hogwarts, A History" by heart.

I'll stop now, am not sure if this is theory or fanfic now. Maybe the "other" is Hermione, the one who figures it all out? I do think the "other" is another, neither Harry or Moldie Voldie, but am not sure it's Neville.


hellocello3200 - Aug 28, 2004 5:02 pm (#184 of 601)

Perhaps even DD will read the prophecy one way but at the end things will play out differently and someone will be like " Oh, so that’s what it meant>"


TwinklingBlueEyes - Aug 28, 2004 6:15 pm (#185 of 601)

Actually, to KISS it, has anyone considered the part "neither can live while the other survives" as mayhap Harry, who has lived to fight another day, may actually go on to lead a "normal" life in the world he loves? Life, love, kids, continuity, a simple process of everlasting life that Moldie Voldie knows not?

Part of "being human"

One thing has always bothered me...Dumbledore to Harry..."'Harry, suffering like this proves you are still a man! This pain is part of being human! "THEN - I - DON'T - WANT - TO - BE - HUMAN!" Harry roared," ...as opposed to what?


Ann - Aug 28, 2004 6:47 pm (#186 of 601)

Twinkling, rather than suffer the pain he's suffering at that moment, if it is a part of being human, I think he'd agree to be anything else that was on offer.

And I think, hope, that in the end, Harry will live the life you describe, although his happiness will be accompanied by a lot of sadness about those he has lost. (As you can tell, I'm an optimist.) If he does die, it is going to be for a good reason, and it is only going to be after he has vanquished Voldemort, and probably been preceded in death by someone he loves more than life. But I don't think JKR is going to pass up the chance of writing one final end of year scene, where he sits down with DD, and DD truly does tell him "everything."


Land of the Shire - Aug 28, 2004 9:46 pm (#187 of 601)

I think, rather than be human, he'd rather be dead at that point. I think I'd feel the same had I been through what he'd been through that night.


Agramante - Sep 4, 2004 8:14 am (#188 of 601)

Some thoughts on the Voldemort/Harry? prophecy. It can't be insignificant that JK has put Neville in the picture: why create any doubt at all over the prophecy's subject, only to quash it completely a few pages later? There are things about Neville which give me pause. First: how would Voldemort have marked him as his equal? Perhaps there's something we don't know yet, but V does promote himself as a pureblood, which Neville actually is. More importantly, though, there is this question of the power V's nemesis will have...Neville's coming into his own by the end of book 5. He'd become one of the most adept at learning spells in the DA. But so much was quietly revealed when Harry & co. ran into him at St. Mungo's: his grandmother said "Don't be ashamed, Neville," and he quietly answered, "I'm not ashamed." What is he, then? I'm getting a feeling that Neville is even deeper than Harry. Where Harry's mourned his parents his whole life, without really knowing them, Neville's grief never really heals because his parents are still alive and a constant torment to him. He's learned even more bitterly than Harry about the sacrifices that come with love and compassion. A small, but significant example: he puts the candy wrapper from his mother in his pocket, not the trash can. I just get the sense that Neville is the one who has the love and compassion in such strength that Voldemort won't be able to stand against him: so Harry's done the skirmishing for several years, but Neville will be the one to administer V's final defeat. That would make sense for Voldemort too, who's underestimated the power of love many times already: that he should misinterpret the prophecy and choose the wrong boy. Much like Sauron in the Lord of the Rings, who whiffed on the Ring: Voldemort is a wise fool who miscalculates on the most critical danger he faces and dooms himself.


Magical Llama -Sep 4, 2004 2:33 pm (#189 of 601)

My thoughts about the prophecy can be found here: Magical Llama "Long Theory about Harry's Family" 9/4/04 7:12am


popkin - Sep 4, 2004 2:45 pm (#190 of 601)
Edited by Sep 4, 2004 3:57 pm

I agree with you, Agramante. Even though JKR has implied (through Dumbledore) that Neville has no part to play in fulfilling the prophecy, it does seem like he just about has to. He and Harry were the only ones to handle it at the DOM. Why? As Round Pink Spider points out in her "Long Theory about Harry's Family" thread, many connections are made between Neville and Harry. For instance, Harry identifies himself as Neville Longbottom on the Knight bus. Why? I think JKR's laid too many clues for it to be insignificant that Neville could have been the "one" to just leave him out of the prophecy picture altogether.

Magical Llama, that's an interesting theory, too. I don't know if I buy the concept of spiritual twins, exactly, but you make some good points. Is there any way that Voldemort and Harry could be actual twins? Could Lily have had them both, somehow? Could she have take one of her twins back in time to hide it from Lord Voldemort, only to create Tom Riddle by mistake? Naaah. That just doesn't work. Or could she have sent one of her babies back in time to be born as Tom Riddle by a surrogate mother? That's a little better. Probably not very right, though.


Siriusly - Sep 4, 2004 3:26 pm (#191 of 601)

Oh the things I could say....*biting tongue* or is that *crossing fingers*


LooneyLuna - Sep 4, 2004 3:41 pm (#192 of 601)

I think Neville is still in the prophecy picture. I agree with you, Popkin. Although Neville hasn't been "marked" physically by Voldemort, he has certainly been marked emotionally. I think Harry and Neville will be the last ones standing in the end - I think they will help each other and work as a team. Or one will enable the other to get Voldemort.

And if not, I'll gladly eat a stoat sandwich with mustard, of course. And cheese (I would eat a dirty shoe if it had cheese on it), I'm sure a nice sharp cheddar would go nicely.

Smile


schoff - Sep 4, 2004 4:01 pm (#193 of 601)

Although Neville hasn't been "marked" physically by Voldemort, he has certainly been marked emotionally.

How are people saying that Neville has been marked emotionally by Voldemort? I would agree that he has marked emotionally by the attack on his parents, but that wasn't Voldemort. It was his lackeys.

Neville probably still has some part in regards to the prophecy, but I am unable to see how he could be the one "...the Dark Lord [marked] as his equal..." considering Neville and Voldemort have probably never been near each other. Unless people are saying the "Dark Lord" isn't Voldemort but someone else.


LooneyLuna - Sep 4, 2004 4:20 pm (#194 of 601)

True, schoff, Neville hasn't seen Voldemort face to face. And Voldemort hasn't personally marked Neville, although he's indirectly responsible for the torture his DEs inflicted upon Alice and Frank.


Magical Llama -Sep 4, 2004 5:05 pm (#195 of 601)

popkin wrote: Could Lily have had them both, somehow?

I don't believe that would be possible. I am not suggesting that Voldemort - or Neville - are twins by blood. I just see Voldemort and Harry being destined by fate. They are now bound together by the same curse.

The prophecy. states: " .. either must die at the hand of the other, for neither can live while the other survives...."

This means that Harry cannot truly live while Voldemort is alive, unless he personally kills his Siamese twin, and becomes one.

(I am not religious, nor am I suggesting that spiritual brother has anything to do with religion. I can't think of a more appropriate word to use, lol.)

The phoenix may play an important role in the symbolism: the phoenix feather could symbolize a renewing conflict that may have originally started with Gryffindor and Salazar. If Harry and Voldemort are the heirs of these two men - I would expect them to be twins of fate destined to finish their heir's "noble" work.


rambkowalczyk - Sep 4, 2004 7:12 pm (#196 of 601)

Someone further back speculated that because there were two references to the "one" 1 at the beginning -the one with the power to defeat the Dark Lord approaches, and 2 at the end-the one with the power to defeat the Dark Lord will be born as the 7th month dies, that maybe the prophecy refers to 2 people, Harry being the one marked by the Dark Lord, and somebody else who will be born at the end of July - Neville. Maybe they must somehow work together.

I have noticed that a lot of people seem to think that if Voldemort is killed Harry will die. I can understand why people might think this mainly because there is a part of Voldemort in Harry. If we don't over analyze the prophecy (and I'm guilty of this as the next) it seems as though the Prophecy says this cannot happen. It says one must kill the other. It doesn't imply that if Harry kills Voldemort that he will die too.

I have in mind that Harry might allow himself to die in hopes that it will kill Voldemort-he wouldn't be thinking logically at this point. Then Neville would save Harry after Voldemort was killed. Does this make any sense?


schoff - Sep 4, 2004 7:18 pm (#197 of 601)

I have in mind that Harry might allow himself to die in hopes that it will kill Voldemort-he wouldn't be thinking logically at this point. Then Neville would save Harry after Voldemort was killed. Does this make any sense?

Yes, since it's very close to what I think will happen too.


Siriusly - Sep 4, 2004 7:30 pm (#198 of 601)

like maybe....being beheaded? haha


hellocello3200 - Sep 5, 2004 7:28 am (#199 of 601)

Well Siriusly you might be thinking along the right lines, in Bram Stoker's Dracula, to kill a vampire you have to drive a steak through the heart, stuff garlic in the mouth and cut off the head. LV isn't exactly a vampire, but he does display vampire-like quality, such as immorality, and the dinking of the unicorn blood.( Someone else pointed this out, I think in the Vampire thread).


popkin - Sep 5, 2004 9:33 am (#200 of 601)

I'm overdue for a reread of the series. I can't remember things well enough. I know there has been a potion, or a potion ingredient, mentioned that has the effect of making a person appear dead (draught of living death, or something like it). I think that's also the one that Snape is referring to when he gives his "put a stopper in death" speech. I think that a potion of that type will come into play in the fulfillment of the prophecy.

It seems most likely that Harry will be the one to appear dead, and that Voldemort will believe that he is (we probably will, too - boo hoo). Voldemort will, again, have forgotten an important aspect of ancient magic, and while Harry is "dead" will inadvertently finish himself off. Neville might even have a part to play in that scene - avenging his friend and getting an AK that rebounds on now mortal Voldie. However it happens, I hope Lord Voldemort has time to realize what he has done to himself, and can say, "Darn. I should have seen that coming." Then Harry will be revived (yay!) and he'll begin to really live - enjoying a new freedom and a world full of choices.


Madame Librarian - Sep 5, 2004 1:11 pm (#201 of 601)

Odd terms used that at first glance we take to mean killed or death:

defeated -- What DD does to Grindelwald according the Chocolate Frog card.

vanquish -- As in what The One may do to the Dark Lord according to the Prophecy.

must die -- OK, that's pretty straightforward, die as in dead, according to the Prophecy

live/survives -- Again in the Prophecy. Speculation abounds that neither of these two words should be taken at face value, but that their layered meanings are what will be critical.

Other than the "must die" bit, there are certainly some obvious uses of euphemistic terms and phrases to dance around the idea of death that's not-death. Maybe JKR wants us to gloss over this on the first read or the first time we think about it. "Grindelwald? Oh, him. Well, he was killed by Dumbledore in 1945. Long gone, not an issue," we say, perhaps. But, wait, when we re-read that bit it doesn't say killed, it says defeated. Oh, dear.

Now I've just realized that there are many situations in the series that parallel the enigmas in the these terms and the very crux of the Prophecy -- the either/or part. There are lots of half- or almost- deaths or nearly-dead things.

Voldemort is almost dead, but not quite, after he AKs Harry.

The ghosts are...what...not fully dead.

Students are petrified, they look dead, but they're not. If there was no antidote with the mandrake roots, would they just stay like that forever and essentially be dead?

There are potions that mimic death (maybe), definitely things you can give people (Ron, Fleur's sister, etc.) that make them seem dead and drowned.

Dead people re-appear from a wand and don't just float around, they communicate really important information.

We think Crouch, Jr. is dead, but no, no, he's faked it by switching with his mother's death.

Dementors are as if they're dead--they resemble rotted, decayed dead bodies.

Sirius dies, but in such an odd way, it doesn't seem final, there's no body. Sure we know he's dead 'cuz JKR said so absolutely, but I'll bet that Harry isn't convinced. Luna either.

What gives? Big theme? Big clues? Alas, no answers as yet.

Ciao. Barb


hellocello3200 - Sep 5, 2004 2:49 pm (#202 of 601)

Madame Librarian, you bring up a lot of good points. I think the word defeat is interesting. Maybe we will get to meet Grindelwald in Azkaban and he'll be like "Yup, I did the whole 'Dark lord' thing but while it was fun at first it really wasn't a good idea. That Tom Riddle should just give up and slip away to Bermuda for a holiday."


Madame Librarian - Sep 5, 2004 3:09 pm (#203 of 601)

hellocello600, my best chuckle of the day, so far! Take 20 points for your house.

On the serious side--what if this partial death concept wherever it comes up is a subtle hint that it's not so much that a person dies, but that their magic does? We've toyed with the idea before that for Voldemort, something worse than death could mean a complete loss of magical ability. How would any of Wizard, good or bad, react to that? Did JKR put Squibs in the story to hint that there is a form of existence that is not Muggle and not Wizard, but in-between? How many would consider this a half-life in a way? Whoa...I'm drifting far afield from the Prophecy topic of this thread, so I'll stop.

Where should I go with this? Will think on it. Later, though. Now, I'm off to see "Vanity Fair."

Ciao. Barb


hellocello3200 - Sep 5, 2004 5:57 pm (#204 of 601)

I think what JKR is trying to say is that an eternity in the world of the living can be torture. I think that it is explicitly stated by Nearly headless Nick that he would rather go wherever people go than hang around till who knows when. I think that the way that DD is portrayed as tired might be an example too. I think he has been taking care of the worlds problems for too long and I think he is sticking around because all h*** would break lose if he was out of the picture. A vacation in the tropics might be good for him too. Thanks for the points Madame. I think that the whole thing about they can't both live connects to this too.


zelmia - Sep 6, 2004 8:25 pm (#205 of 601)

Siriusly, are you referring to the alchemical "beheading" which indicates the beginning of the alchemical process/spiritual transformation? If so, I encourage you to explain it to the people on this Thread because you have done a LOT of research on that and people will find it an extremely cogent analogy.


Madame Librarian - Sep 9, 2004 12:37 pm (#206 of 601)

The discussion over on the Voldemort/Riddle thread starting me thinking in the following direction, and I felt I should post on this thread, too.

Ann, wow, your post really got me thinking about JKR's teaser about why Voldemort didn't die, and then, bam, she practically jumps up and down pointing at the prophecy.

So maybe we're supposed to ask what does a prophecy mean. Not that particular prophecy, any prophecy. Are we supposed to be thinking about Who's Running the Show rather than He Who Must Not Be Named?

This disturbs me a bit because it leads to the conclusion that prophecies rule in the Potterverse, not free will or choices. Huh?? I hope someone can help here and find the flaw in my supposition.

It must not be prophecies in general, but something twisty or unobvious about the specific prophecy. Still, I end up with an uncomfortable doubt.

Ciao. Barb


Ann - Sep 9, 2004 5:25 pm (#207 of 601)

The post Barb is commenting on is just a summary of the arguments I made in post #163 on this thread.


Madame Librarian - Sep 9, 2004 7:17 pm (#208 of 601)

Duh, thanks, Ann. It should have occurred to me that my post was a response to yours, and folks should be directed to the original comment. Sorry I was lax. This cross-referencing business is hard work!

Ciao. Barb


DJ Evans - Sep 11, 2004 4:18 pm (#209 of 601)

OK, you know how you can read something over and over and you just can't get it straighten out in your head? Well, that's how the Prophecy has been for me. So I did one of my old tricks that I've used in the past to try and help me get a handle on the Prophecy's true meaning. And maybe I've done it, I don't know -- see what you think.

Here is the Prophecy as we know it:

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ...

born to those who have thrice defied him,

born as the seventh month dies ...

and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal,

but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ...

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... (Bold & Underline mine)

Now my little trick is to insert the "names" of those that it applies to, sometimes it helps me. Below is how I've done it:

The one (Harry/Neville) with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ...

born to those (Potter's/Longbottom's) who have thrice defied him,

born (Harry/Neville) as the seventh month dies ...

and the Dark Lord will mark him (Harry) as equal,

but he (Harry) will have power the Dark Lord knows not ...

and either (Harry) must die at the hand of the other (Neville) for neither (Harry/Neville) can live while the other survives ...

The first 3 lines of the Prophecy can be speaking about either Harry or Neville (or their families).

It is not until the 4th line that we assume it is speaking about Harry, thus leaving Neville as "the other" one.

The 5th line is speaks about the protection that Lily gave Harry when she willingly died for him and/or the passage of some of LV's powers to Harry.

And last in line 6, I'm thinking when it says "the other" it just might be talking about Neville.

So if I'm deciphering this right, could it come down to where Harry or Neville dies at the hand of the other? Please remember, I don't want either of them to die!!! To me the prophecy speaks about 3 people; LV, Harry, & Neville. LV marks the one (Harry) who can defeat him, leaving "the other"--Neville. It's makes sense to me. Can anybody else see it this way?

Later, Deb


Ladybug220 - Sep 11, 2004 4:53 pm (#210 of 601)

Deb,

I would do the last line differently since I see the prophecy as being between the Dark Lord and someone else (Harry or Neville).

and either (Harry or Neville) must die at the hand of the other (Dark Lord) for neither (Harry/Neville and Dark Lord) can live while the other survives ...
 
 


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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #211 to #240

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:09 pm


popkin - Sep 11, 2004 5:10 pm (#211 of 601)
Edited by Sep 11, 2004 6:17 pm

DJ Evans, if your theory is correct, I think it will only appear that Harry has died at the hand of Neville - convincingly enough that Voldemort will believe it. Then Voldemort will do something that he knew he could not do until Harry was dead - some other prophecy fulfillment that we haven't learned about yet - and it will backfire, vanquishing him completely this time.

Neville is apparently adept at potions when Snape is not badgering him. Maybe the combination of fantastic Herbology and passable potions skills will play a part in the whole "death" scenario. We might be biting our nails while waiting to see if Neville has successfully brewed his "stopper in death" potion.

You know, it was Snape who said he could "put a stopper in death", so maybe he'll give Neville the potion to give to Harry. Then we'll find out where Snape's loyalties truly lie. It might even look like Neville and Snape have both turned traitor, only to find out later that they figured out the prophecy together and helped Harry to fulfill it.


thetheatre62442 - Sep 11, 2004 5:46 pm (#212 of 601)

'And either must die at the hand of the other or neither can live while the other survives.'

What if the 'either' part is referring to Harry AND Voldie and the 'other' part is actually referring to an OTHER person who we don't know? HPB prince, possibly? Or someone else? Just a crazy though I had... tell me what you think.


DJ Evans - Sep 11, 2004 6:52 pm (#213 of 601)

Ladybug -- I'm (in my own opinion) just thinking Jo wouldn't go into so much depth about all of the qualifications of who would defeat LV in the Prophecy if it just concern one other person besides LV. The way it is, it could fit either Harry or Neville, up until the 4th line when we know the first part was indeed speaking about Harry, thus leaving Neville -- "the other".

My thinking is the Prophecy "should" have been only about LV and one other person, but it turns out to fit at least two -- Harry & Neville. It's like the last line is talking about there's not enough room for them both, so one must kill the other to live. Who knows, in the scheme of things LV might take Neville and then anything can happen. We all know how LV can be. He could torture Neville, put a spell on him, tell him all kinds of lies, bring Neville's parents into the equation, etc... to get Neville to kill Harry. The ways/means are endless.

popkin- Oh I hope you are right and it only appears that Harry dies at the hand of Neville!!!

Later, Deb


Madame Librarian - Sep 12, 2004 8:24 am (#214 of 601)

Deb, help! I probably being incredibly dense here, but I really want to understand your explanation because it's frustrating how the Prophecy is so obfuscatory (great word!), and clarity would help me sleep better. Please explain why that fourth line--and the Dark Lord will mark him (Harry) as equal--couldn't still have a Harry/Neville meaning.

Thanks.

Ciao. Barb


Hollywand - Sep 12, 2004 8:44 am (#215 of 601)

A great discussion on the meaning of the Prophecy.

I would like to suggest that the wording of the Prophecy specifically points to Peter Pettigrew and his silver hand as the agent of destruction for the two connected wizards, Harry and Voldemort:

"Either must die at the hand of the other..."

Wormtail now has a hand that is "either" as it is made of a mixture of Harry and Voldemort incarnate. The hand itself is also "the Other" as it is an entirely separate entity belonging to Pettigrew and not either of the connected wizards.

Since Harry has saved Wormtail's life, Harry's act of mercy may be the determining factor in fulfilling the Prophecy.

Another interesting detail to note is that Voldemort refers to himself rising more powerful than before, which matches the wording of Sibyl’s second prophecy, to Harry alone, even though Voldemort has not had the opportunity to hear or know about this information.


riddikulus - Sep 12, 2004 11:27 am (#216 of 601)
Edited by Sep 12, 2004 12:29 pm

Hey all, In order to understand this prophecy a little better, I thought I'd take another look at Trelawney’s 1st prophecy and see how she worded it. It goes like this: The Dark Lord LIES alone and friendless, abandoned by his followers. His servant has been CHAINED these twelve years. Tonight, before midnight... the servant will break free and set out to rejoin his master. The Dark Lord will rise again with his servant's aid, greater and more terrible than ever he was.

I thought those words were interesting. He lies... chained. Of course, you assume it's Wormtail, but he wasn't chained. He was always free to leave... he didn't cause of his fear (if that's what she means by chained). But, what if this prophecy was about yet another, who became free that night, too? But what's more interesting is that she specifies who will do what and what will happen. Not, And or Either. Those words and the breaks in the prophecy, lead me to think she may be speaking of others... we can assume it may be Neville... but DD specifically steps up and tells Harry, it's definitely him who must do the killing or be killed. Also, Voldy marked Harry... So, I’m discounting Neville. But there's definitely a 3rd party in this prophecy.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Sep 12, 2004 11:59 am (#217 of 601)

"His servant has been CHAINED these twelve years." I took that to mean Barty Jr.


Hollywand - "Wormtail now has a hand that is "either" as it is made of a mixture of Harry and Voldemort incarnate. The hand itself is also "the Other" as it is an entirely separate entity belonging to Pettigrew and not either of the connected wizards." I really like that idea, and BTW, welcome back!

I can hardly wait to hear the third prophecy, if indeed as we suspect, there will be a third.


riddikulus - Sep 12, 2004 12:04 pm (#218 of 601)

BlueEyes, You mean you take it to mean that now? At the time, we didn't know who Barty Jr. was... it was only reasonable to assume it to be Wormtail, at the time...

Thus, if we assume it to be someone else now, we can assume, also, that the prophecies aren't what they seem.


Eponine - Sep 12, 2004 12:13 pm (#219 of 601)

But Barty Jr. didn't "break free" until the beginning of PoA, didn't he? Plus, I don't think he had been under his father's control for a full 12 years, but that's up for debate. So, if the prophecy wasn't referring to Wormtail, then to whom was it referring? It's an interesting question.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Sep 12, 2004 12:29 pm (#220 of 601)

Riddikulus, you are entirely correct. At the time I read it, I don't remember trying to associate it with anyone, just took it as a given until it fell into place in GOF. It seems to me "Tonight, before midnight... the servant will break free and set out to rejoin his master." (Wormtail escaping Sirius and Lupin).

"The Dark Lord will rise again with his servant's aid, greater and more terrible than ever he was." Voldy didn't rise again until GOF, when Barty Jr, also being Voldy's servant, brought Harry to the graveyard for the necessary ingredients (Harry's blood) to bring him back to life. I think the prophesy could have included both of his servants.

Edit: Isn't hindsight a wonderful thing? :-)


Hollywand - Sep 12, 2004 12:50 pm (#221 of 601)

Hi Twinkles, thanks for the warm welcome! ;-)

In the wording of the second prophecy listed above, there are two references to the number twelve: Distant twelve, (twelve years) and present twelve (before midnight). I think this is a reference to the time link of two alchemical processes: the time is right, the prophecy is being fulfilled, and interlinked.

A chain is often thought of as a metallic link between two things: Wormtail's hand is described as "silvery, gleaming like the moonlight": I think this is a reference to mercury, or quicksilver, a key link in the creation of the Philosopher’s Stone.

Wormtail has to remain a rat for twelve years,” chained" to his Animagus form and cannot reveal his true identity because he is in a "dead" state as the (supposedly) dead Peter Pettigrew. Wormtail beaks his false identity that fateful night as a common rat as Sirius (the prisoner, the Dog Star) reveals Peter's true identity, with Lupin, the grey wolf, as witness, and the trio, of course.

Voldemort's reincarnation cauldron in the graveyard is stone. I believe a metaphorical reference to the philosopher's stone. During the process, the cauldron glows blood red, then white sparks like diamonds fly out, as Harry witnesses and participates unwillingly in the event. Elanor has pointed out on the alchemy thread that red to white indicates a reversal of the process---so Voldemort may be incarnate, may be more powerful, but now he is mortal, and has unwittingly reversed his own development.

I'm not sure whether Voldy will seek immortality again, or try to kill Potter first. In his folly, Voldy will probably try for Harry. Remember, Wormtail pleads with Voldy to not use Harry's blood as a key ingredient, but Voldy is convinced that the blood will make him even stronger. I think he's cooked his own phoenix, so to speak. This is why Harry is able to extract dead souls from his wand on their first duel. Go Potter guy!!!! ;-)

Apologies, I will cease and desist with the alchemical references on this thread, but in this case I feel they explain some of the wording.


DJ Evans - Sep 12, 2004 2:46 pm (#222 of 601)

Barb/Madame Librarian -- Sorry it's taken me so long to get back to your question that you posted to me - Sunday's are the one day that I totally goof off and don't get online till late in the afternoons. Anyhoo to answer your question about why I think the 4th line of the 1st Prophecy is dealing with Harry and not both of them. I guess you could say I'm going by what we know as canon right now. As far as we know, Neville hasn't been marked by LV. That and Harry is considered by LV as more of his "equal" than what Neville is, what with both Harry & LV being Half-Bloods etc... That's basically why I just put Harry's name there. I know some (or most maybe) would include Neville there too, but I just see it as fitting Harry right now. Does that help you any?

Later, Deb


Madame Librarian - Sep 12, 2004 7:33 pm (#223 of 601)

Yes, Deb, thanks for clarifying. I'll have to ponder your logic there. I know many, starting with DD himself, feel that only Harry has been marked by Voldemort, but there's a slim chance that somehow Neville is, too, just in a way that's not as visible as a scar and an officially noted attack. (Speaking of which, who was there to witness the event? We read how Hagrid describes the attack most graphically, but who besides the Potters and Voldemort was there? This is not on-topic, but curious, nonetheless.)

Ciao. Barb


riddikulus - Sep 12, 2004 8:07 pm (#224 of 601)

ML, apparently Wormtail was there, somewhere. He had to have been able to get Voldy’s wand, to hide somewhere, until he was able to get it back to him, later on.


Phoenix song - Sep 12, 2004 9:21 pm (#225 of 601)

With regards to the prophesy where the servant breaks free to rejoin his master, wasn't Peter chained and being led back to Hogwarts for questioning? Couldn't this have been the "chaining" that he escaped from as well as living as a rat for all of these years?

Barbie


schoff - Sep 12, 2004 11:01 pm (#226 of 601)

ML, apparently Wormtail was there, somewhere. He had to have been able to get Voldy’s wand, to hide somewhere, until he was able to get it back to him, later on.

He didn't necessarily have to be there when Voldemort was. He could have gone back later and sifted through the ruins, before Sirius found him.


Hollywand - Sep 13, 2004 1:47 am (#227 of 601)

Phoenix Song, a nice detail to notice!

Wormtail was indeed in chains, and broke free, a literal fulfillment of the second prophecy's wording.

As Twinkling Blue Eyes mentioned above, if Trelawney gives us a third prediction, it will be a really exciting cipher to try to fit into the story!


riddikulus - Sep 13, 2004 6:28 am (#228 of 601)
Edited by Sep 13, 2004 7:30 am

"He didn't necessarily have to be there when Voldemort was. He could have gone back later and sifted through the ruins, before Sirius found him."

When? He wouldn't have had time.... Hagrid was there, just after, as was Sirius. I think he was there with him.

"wasn't Peter chained and being led back to Hogwarts for questioning?"

Not for 12 years. He wasn't chained for 12 years... it doesn’t say, the servant who was chained a night.


Phoenix song - Sep 13, 2004 7:13 am (#229 of 601)

Riddikulus: I don't think that Hagrid or Sirius would have necessarily noticed a rat amongst the rubble with all the of chaos surrounding the death of the Potters.

There are more than literal chainings. Peter was also chained in that he had faked his own death, and could not be seen as himself in the WW. He was chained to being a rat.

Barbie

Edit: I don't know much about rats, but I don't think that it would be beyond them to pick up a wand with their mouths. It is basically no larger or heavier than a twig.

My point is, though, that I think that it was Peter who fulfilled Trelawney's first prophesy. He was chained, he escaped, returned to his master, and helped him to be restored "more powerful than before." I think that he has fulfilled all of the areas of this prophesy, and that it's safe to assume that the prophesy does not refer to another servant.


riddikulus - Sep 13, 2004 7:22 am (#230 of 601)

Yes, Phoenix, I was specifically answering the above quote where it was suggested he was chained at the end coming out of the shack.

As for a rat picking up a wand... I'll have to disagree, again. I don't know many rats that would be able to do that. He'd have to have been in human form at the time and if not him, then someone would have had to have been there to get the wand, to ultimately give back to Voldy... since he got the wand back to him at some point, I’ll have to deduce it was him, in human form, there with him, at the time.


Hollywand - Sep 13, 2004 7:59 am (#231 of 601)

JKR was asked the Wormtail/wand question at her last book signing, and the exact quote is listed on the News column at the Leaky Cauldron. Jo simply replies "He (Peter) hid them". I take her reply to indicate that it's not a detail she will bring back into the story as a central clue.


Madame Librarian - Sep 13, 2004 8:16 am (#232 of 601)

Two things:

1)--I think rats can pick up objects such as sticks (or wands) and travel great distances with them. I just finished reading a fascinating book called...um, Rats about this science writer who observed on alley's rat population in Manhattan for a year. They are amazingly adaptable, strong, cunning and athletic.

2)--Can a wizard perform magical spells while in his/her Animagus form? If yes, Wormtail could have used Accio and the hover charm to assist in schlepping. Now, granted he'd have to be careful that no one saw a rat running along with a wand and a robe wafting along after him, but it's still a method of transporting things to a hide-y hole somewhere.

Ciao. Barb


riddikulus - Sep 13, 2004 8:25 am (#233 of 601)

You may be right. Either way, we agree it was Wormtail, in whatever form, who picked up the wand and later got it back to his master.


mike miller - Sep 13, 2004 8:58 am (#234 of 601)

DJ - Your analysis opens an option not previously discussed. If Neville is "the other"; and Voldemort knows the full prophesy, imagine Voldemort transfiguring into a mirror image of Harry thus making Neville "choose" who to curse.

I'm still not sure about Neville being "the other" or Wormtail's hand being "the other". I'm reasonably certain that Voldemort did not die that night at Godric's Hollow because he was hit by his own curse.

The other element of this prophesy jigsaw puzzle that makes my head hurt is the power that Harry possess and the Dark Lord know not. Could it be compassion and/or self-sacrifice? If so, then the roles of Neville and Wormtail could be much more significant.


LooneyLuna - Sep 14, 2004 6:33 am (#235 of 601)

I think the power that Harry possesses that the Dark Lord knows not is love. Harry also does not fear death and that has to frighten Voldemort, who above all else, fears death.

I think The One in the prophecy is Harry. He alone has faced Voldemort and has come away from the encounters. Voldemort chose to mark Harry, fulfilling that portion of the prophecy.

I do feel that Neville has a role to fulfill in the vanquishing of Voldemort, but I have no idea what.


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 14, 2004 6:13 pm (#236 of 601)
Edited by Sep 14, 2004 7:14 pm

I have a theory about the prophecy that I don't think has been brought up yet. The prophecy makes it seem like Harry will kill Voldemort or Voldemort will kill Harry. However, I don't think that this is the case. It says "either must die at the hand of the other..." Well, before Voldemort's return in book 4, the simple act of Harry touching Voldemort would kill him, right? Well, after Voldy's return, Voldy can touch Harry without harm. I think that the prophecy will play out that Harry will be touching Voldemort at the time of his death("either must die at the HAND of the other"), but will not be the cause of it.


riddikulus - Sep 14, 2004 6:36 pm (#237 of 601)

It could be literal, they must die at each other hands or it could infer something like Wormtail’s hand or imply something as out there as the Hand of Glory. Something as far fetched as, Voldy and Harry were in the dark, both without wands and they were standing at the edge of a cliff, but cause Harry had the hand of Glory, he was able to light his way to safety.


LooneyLuna - Sep 15, 2004 5:18 am (#238 of 601)

Vanquish means to conquer, defeat or subjugate. The One with the power to defeat the Dark Lord approaches. Then it talks about either the Dark Lord or the Marked One has to kill one another. And then another reference to the One being born at the end of July. I think the prophecy is talking about two different Ones - marked and unmarked - Harry and Neville. Harry might have to kill Voldemort because he is the marked one with powers the Dark Lord knows not, BUT Neville has the power to defeat or conquer Voldemort. Maybe Harry and Neville will work in tandem. Neville defeats Voldemort first (how humiliating) and then Harry finishes Voldemort off. Just typing it seems ridiculous.

Cart me off to St. Mungo’s!


zelmia - Sep 15, 2004 12:28 pm (#239 of 601)

I think it is possible that 'the seventh month' might not refer to July. Therefore, the One who was born "as the seventh month dies" could be someone entirely different; perhaps even the Half-Blood Prince.


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 15, 2004 4:26 pm (#240 of 601)

Riddikulus - Yeah, that's kind of along the lines of what I was thinking. JK said the prophecy was written carefully, so I think we can expect some sort of play on words. Also, when it says that "neither can live while the other survives," it seems that Harry and Voldy will be put in a situation that only one will come out of. It could be a duel, where either Harry will kill Voldy or vice-versa, but I'm thinking that it will be some situation brought on by an outside force-something will happen to both of them, but only one will come out alive (kind of along the lines of your "getting lost in the dark" example; the dark is the outside force and they're not battling each other to stay alive, but they're battling something else, and for some reason, only one can live).
 
 


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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #241 to #270

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:10 pm


riddikulus - Sep 15, 2004 6:46 pm (#241 of 601)

I like the way you put it better, Hawkeye:)


schoff - Sep 15, 2004 10:26 pm (#242 of 601)

I think it is possible that 'the seventh month' might not refer to July.

With what calendar would you use, Zelmia? And what month would it correlate to on the Gregorian calendar?


zelmia - Sep 15, 2004 11:06 pm (#243 of 601)

This was just an idea I had a while back while exploring something else. But, as an example, on the Julian calendar the seventh month is Sept-ember (hence the name: Sept, meaning 7). So maybe the one who is 'born as the seventh month dies' is actually someone who was born in September. Hermione was born in September - but no, I don't think she is The One. Besides: personally I would put the 19th closer to the Ides than "as the month dies."

There are other calendars such as the Hebrew calendar, the Egyptian calendar, the Mayan, Aztec, etc. none of which use the same names for their months as the Gregorian calendar.

There are two major problems with this idea though. Okay three.

If it's not 'the seventh month' of the Gregorian calendar, then which calendar is it?

Which character(s) fit the criterion of being born at the end of the month, full stop? How many days prior to the last day of any given month are considered part of "as the month dies"?

Finally, since Dumbledore tells Harry "I'm afraid there can be no doubt that it is you..." it seems that this idea couldn't hold too much water. We know that Rowling speaks through Dumbledore when she wants to tell us (the readers) something. Since Dumbledore says this, the One must therefore be Harry and no other.

However, as Dumbledore himself admits in this same scene, he has been wrong before. Just a little snack for thought...


riddikulus - Sep 16, 2004 7:15 am (#244 of 601)

I agree that JKR has kept her story a mystery, because it's a true mystery. There's going to be a twist that we know not. She keeps saying, she knows what's coming for Harry. It could very well be that he goes through all the emotional and physical turmoil of thinking he's the one that must do this killing (with the help of many others) but we know he'll put it all on his shoulders, ultimately... to only have the twist at the end be that it was not him. But from what we've learned of Harry, he'd risk it all to be the one, even if he wasn't...not because of ego, but because he truly has a savior personality.


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 16, 2004 4:56 pm (#245 of 601)

Thanks, Riddikulus.Smile I agree with you that Harry would risk it all even if he wasn't the one.


schoff - Sep 16, 2004 5:58 pm (#246 of 601)

I'd forgotten that September is the seventh month....I'm fairly certain that doesn't include Hermione though.

Astronomy is surprisingly absent from the books, even though Harry takes it. What about the revolution of the Moon? That's how most religious holidays are set--a certain full moon after an equinox/solstice. A calendar based on that?

The problem for all calendars is that they arbitrarily begin their years. Maybe "the seventh month" is the seventh month after a certain event that's not New Year's Day? Maybe an astronomical event, or even seven months after the First Prophecy?


schoff - Sep 16, 2004 7:39 pm (#247 of 601)

I would think that if we are talking about astronomical events, then that limits it to either the equinox/solstice, the revolution of the moon and planets, or the zodiac.

JKR hasn't been too into the zodiac, though. She has talked about the planets. Maybe after an eclipse or alignment of the planets?


zelmia - Sep 16, 2004 7:50 pm (#248 of 601)

Schoff, I think you're closer to it with "an astronomical event". That's sort of what I was thinking. But you bring up another good point: Which event would that be? If we use the Winter Solstice, that puts us pretty much at July again as "the seventh month". But what about the Autumnal Equinox - signifying the end of the growing (fertility) season for many ancient cultures? By the present (Gregorian) calendar, the Equinox is about 22 September. So 7 months from that would be what is presently known as April.

Perhaps Trelawney would refer to The Zodiac Calendar, which traditionally begins with The Vernal Equinox. In this case the 7th month would be Libra (approximately 22 September - 23 October). If she is indeed referring to the Zodiac Calendar, the notice that the approximate dates coincide closer to the middle of the Gregorian months.

If she is referring to the Druid Calendar, then the 7th month is named "Duir" meaning "Oak". This could be a code within a code, so to speak. The One could be 'born as the Oak dies'.

Just some more morsels for thought.

EDIT: Schoff, I was trying to add some more ideas and it timed me out so your response is now ahead of my post. Sorry!


popkin - Sep 17, 2004 8:32 am (#249 of 601)
Edited by Sep 17, 2004 9:33 am

According to Mugglenet, Ron's birthday is March 1st. Is there any way that February can be the seventh month? If he were born February 29 (on a leap year), then his family could celebrate his birthday on March 1st on non-leap years.


mrweasley - Sep 17, 2004 8:44 am (#250 of 601)

Zelmia, I prefer your original September idea with its name-giving reference (sept = seven).

Prophecies are somehow encoded messages, and "the seventh month" could be such a code for Sept-ember, which literally is the seventh month!

So... I guess it is possible that the prophecy applies so somebody who was born at the end of September, and whom we either haven't met yet, or whose birthday simply hasn't been given to us yet.


Ann - Sep 17, 2004 9:06 am (#251 of 601)

September was the seventh month, back when the new year began in March, but it's been a long time since that was changed, and why on earth should a prophecy be given in terms of an out-of-date calendar? And remember, the One has to be born of parents who have thrice defied Voldemort and then marked by Voldemort as his equal. Seems pretty unlikely: who else has Voldemort marked?

DJ's theory (some 40 posts back) assumes that Neville/Harry is really Neville and Harry. But it's not: it's or! Voldemort has got to choose, and he has done so--the choices theme again! Call me stubborn, but I don't think we can cram three people into this prophecy. There's only the One and the Dark Lord, and the Dark Lord gets to choose who the One is by marking him. The terms either-other and neither-other both refer to this pair.

And I think JKR's "careful wording" is the use of "either" rather than "one." If she'd said (what is better, clearer English), "one must die at the hand of the other," it would suggest that both will not die. Because of the reciprocal connotations of "either" when used as an adjective ("on either side of the road," which refers to both sides, not one), she has left open the possibility that the prophecy means each of the two will die at the other's hand. But either does not mean both when the word is used as a noun.

I think we're making it too complicated:

The one (Harry or Neville) with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches,

Born to those who have thrice defied him (Potters or Longbottoms),

Born as the seventh month dies (Harry or Neville)

And the Dark Lord will mark him (Harry!) as his equal

But he (Harry) will have power the Dark Lord knows not

And either (Harry or Voldemort) must die at the hand of the other (Voldemort or Harry, respectively)

For neither (Harry and Voldemort) can live while the other (Voldemort and Harry, respectively) survives

The one (Harry) with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies

Harry has to kill Voldemort. And he will (JKR is dark, but not that dark). The mystery is whether Harry dies, too. I think he doesn't.


mrweasley - Sep 17, 2004 9:20 am (#252 of 601)

"Why on earth should a prophecy be given in terms of an out-of-date calendar?" - Ann

No no no, that's not what I meant. The prophecy is not using an old calendar, but rather the literal meaning of the word September, the "seven" being included in the actual word.

As I said before, I would imagine it as a code that you have to break in order to decipher the prophecy correctly.

Not very probable, I know, but possible. No?


zelmia - Sep 17, 2004 9:31 am (#253 of 601)

Ann, the Zodiac calendar, among other things, is still referred to by those who dabble (or are proficient) in the art of Divination. Since Trelawney is a Seer - or fancies herself one, at any rate - she may not be referring to the calendar as we know it.

While I agree with you (that "we're making it too complicated"), the Prophecy is essentially a code and we are simply trying to explore all the possibilities for deciphering it.


riddikulus - Sep 17, 2004 10:55 am (#254 of 601)
Edited by Sep 17, 2004 11:55 am

Well, Hermione was born in Sept. and if it was up to me, I'd have her defeat LV, as she's been the right hand of Harry (and one of my faves) throughout... but alas, unless her parents gave LV shoddy root canals 3 times, I'd take her off the list... Also, the books title is Harry Potter not Hermione Granger. But the most important factor is that he's been marked his equal and thus has been thrust into the prophecy, even with the? next to his name. Of course, what JR has done from the beginning is suggest that not one alone can simply be the one, it takes a wizarding village.Smile


schoff - Sep 17, 2004 12:44 pm (#255 of 601)

September was the seventh month, back when the new year began in March

September was the seventh month when there were only 10 months in the year and the calendar was missing nearly 2 months--not because the year once started with March. March was just the first labeled month, and it moved every year because the Roman Calendar didn't have enough days to keep it consistent. Ancient Roman Calendar.

January has always been the start of the year Julian and Gregorian calendar. It's named after the god who looks back (towards last year) and forward (towards the new year). Lots of info about calendars, including the Julian and Gregorian ones.


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 17, 2004 2:42 pm (#256 of 601)

Ann- I agree with you on most of the points you made. I think Harry is the one (and the only one). And I also think that both could die. However, I think that maybe Harry doesn't have to kill Voldemort. See my post #237-I think it's possible that Harry may be touching Voldy when he dies, but he won't be the cause of it (I'm kind of taking the "at the hand of the other" literally).


Ann - Sep 18, 2004 6:56 am (#257 of 601)

schoff, I stand corrected, as I so often am. I should have said back when the year began in Martius, which it presumably did before January and February were added. I didn't realize the Romans ever had a 10 month calendar. The Egyptians had a 12 month calendar as far back as the 25th century BC, which, after 238 BC had 365 1/4 days, and I had thought this was largely the root of the Julian calendar.

And, hawkeyetdkchick, I do think Harry has to be the effective cause of Voldemort's death, not just be at hand. Most of us would prefer to see the final blow as an accident, of some sort, since taking a human (or semi-human, in Voldemort's case) life is abhorrent. On the other hand, killing in self-defense is allowed by most ethical systems, perhaps because those who feel killing in self-defense isn't allowable tend not to survive the vicissitudes of history. But we'll see. (Soon, I hope!)


Phoenix song - Sep 18, 2004 9:13 am (#258 of 601)

"I think we're making it too complicated:" -Ann

I agree with you, Ann. I think in our feverish attempts to "figure out" the plan within the enormously complicated mind of JKR that we are delving too deeply into already deep waters. As has been said by Freud (I believe) sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. And sometimes the prophesy is already complicated enough without trying to make it more so.

DD seemed to have no doubts that the only two that could have possibly been the "ones" before the marking would have been Neville and Harry. Since JKR has said that DD is an excellent source of accurate information, I think that we can trust his judgment on this point.

Also, I think that she would stick to the more traditional "British" standards as far as modern calendars would go. If the prophesy were relating to a far distant past, I could see some confusion as to what month it would be in reference to, but not in the more present sense.

Barbie


haymoni - Sep 18, 2004 4:37 pm (#259 of 601)

If Jo would quit saying things like the Prophesy was worded very carefully, we wouldn't be compelled to pick it apart!

She's good... very good.

What a thing it must be to hold all the answers to questions that a fairly large number of people want to know.


Phoenix song - Sep 18, 2004 9:20 pm (#260 of 601)

I can tell you that I could never be JKR (my lack of talent and imagination aside!) I could never keep all of these secrets! I'm afraid that if I knew I would be "shockingly indiscreet". She has said that she hasn't even told her husband!

If I were JKR and if I were asked about the prophecy I: would have to pull out an over-head; diagram it out properly; and give complete explanations as to what each word meant in respect to the outcome of the book. Then: "Does everybody fully understand the ramifications of this prophecy? Are there any further questions or comments?" (Rather teacher style of me, right?)

But she just gives us half-answers, tidbits, clues and a sweet smile. It must be an awesome responsibility for her. To be the only person who really KNEW the outcome of Harry Potter and the full meaning of the prophecy would be a tremendous secret, for certain. (Of course, she could always share her burden with me!)

Barbie


Gerald Costales - Sep 21, 2004 4:35 am (#261 of 601)

Reposted from the Wand thread, thought it fit here also.

Classicsquid592 referred me to this in his original post.

In it Fawkes produced a feather.

"There was a flash of flame in the very middle of the office leaving behind a single golden feather that floated gently to the floor. 'It is Fawkes's warning,' said Dumbledore catching the feather as it fell"

With Neville Father's wand breaking at the Battle at MoM. Classicsquid592 suggested that Neville may get a third wand with a Fawkes's feather core.

Now both Harry and Neville are linked to the Prophecy,

"born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies . . .".

Harry has a July 31st B-day and Neville has a July 30th B-day. Both the Potters' and Longbottoms' defied Voldemort "thrice".

But, most people agree that Harry is "the One" marked by Voldemort,

"and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, …",

Harry has the lightning bolt scar not Neville.

But I was looking at the second to the last line of the Prophecy,

"and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives …",

I suggest that "the One" will be Neville's Fawkes's feather core wand (assuming that's Neville's replacement wand) or Neville. In the line above the word "either" could be both Harry's and Voldemort’s wands instead of Harry and Voldemort. Also, the word "One" could be a thing. Knowing Neville, one can easily imagine Neville casting a spell with his wand that shatters or destroys both Harry's and Voldemort’s wands. That scenario would match this part of the Prophecy,

"neither can live while the other survives...",

The word "neither" being both Harry's and Voldemort’s wands. And the word "other" being Neville’s new Fawkes's feather core wand.

Which would produce a wandless duel between Harry and Voldemort. Wandless magic is probably "Old Magic" and hopefully Dumbledore is training Harry in the practice of it, just in case. ;-) GC


Abracapocus - Sep 25, 2004 7:13 am (#262 of 601)

but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not...

"There is a room in the Department of Mysteries", interrupted Dumbledore, "that is kept locked at all times. It contains a force that is at once more wonderful and more terrible than death, than human intelligence, than forces of nature. It is also, perhaps, the most mysterious of the many subjects for study that reside there. It is the power held within that room that you possess in such quantities and which Voldemort has not at all. That power took you to save Sirius tonight. That power also saved you from possession from Voldemort, because he could not bear to reside in a body so full of the force he detests. In the end, it mattered not that you could not close your mind. It was your heart that saved you."

This statement by Dumbledore leads me to believe Voldemort knows of the existence of this power, but does not possess it himself. BUT if this power is some variant of love, it wouldn’t necessarily be exclusive to Harry. It seems to me that the decisive factor in the prophecy being about Harry rather than Neville is the fact that Voldemort marked Harry when his AK curse rebounded that night in Godric’s Hollow.

Harry and Voldemort have encountered each other several times during the series, yet "either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives" has not happened. I believe that one more implied condition must be met before this line in the prophecy can be fulfilled. I believe it has to do with Harry’s ability to use this "power" against Voldemort. Until that happens, both can and do, live.


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 25, 2004 9:28 am (#263 of 601)

Abracapocus - I agree that something else has to happen to fulfill the prophecy. Right now, Harry and Voldemort seem to be defying the prophecy as they are both living (and it says that "neither can live while the other survives"). I also believe the word "survives" plays a big role in the prophecy. I think something will happen (maybe the "one more implied condition" you were talking about), and only one can survive whatever it is that happens.


mrweasley - Sep 25, 2004 9:36 am (#264 of 601)

You all probably know that JKR mentioned the prophecy at the Edinburgh Book Festival in August:

"The first question that I have never been asked [...] is, "Why didn’t Voldemort die?" Not, "Why did Harry live?" but, "Why didn’t Voldemort die?" The killing curse rebounded, so he should have died. Why didn’t he?

At the end of Goblet of Fire he says that one or more of the steps that he took enabled him to survive. You should be wondering what he did to make sure that he did not die?

I will put it that way. I don’t think that it is guessable. It may be? Someone could guess it? But you should be asking yourself that question, particularly now that you know about the prophesy. I’d better stop there or I will really incriminate myself."

Why was she almost incriminating herself? How is the question of "Why didn't Voldemort die?" connected to the prophecy?


Abracapocus - Sep 25, 2004 9:48 am (#265 of 601)

It also makes me wonder why Dumbledore was so cryptic when he was referring to the power in the room at the DoM as something that Harry possesses. If the Ministry feels it is important enough to study to that degree, would it only apply to Harry? Perhaps it is something that Harry has to come to on his own for it to be of value?

* Off to find a thread about the Power in the Locked Room *


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 25, 2004 9:52 am (#266 of 601)

MrWeasley-

Wow! I had been wondering about what steps Voldy had taken to prevent him from dying, but I totally missed the part where JK connects it to the prophecy. Here's the reasoning I could come up with: Voldemort obviously did something to himself before he tried to kill Harry that would prevent him from dying. When he returns at the end of GOF, he said that he would settle on a mortal body or something like that. The only way I can link this to the prophecy is that now Voldemort is mortal (he wasn't before he marked Harry), and now Harry can kill him. I guess what I'm wondering now, is will Voldemort do the same things as before to become sort of invincible. JK says that "he (Voldemort) says that one or more of the steps that he took enabled him to survive." The word survive is jumping out at me because it's in the prophecy. Can Voldemort take these steps again, and be the one that survives in the prophecy? Are there steps Harry can take (and would he be willing to take those steps even if he could) so that he would survive? Maybe Voldemort will try to take these steps again, and it will backfire. What do you think?


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 25, 2004 9:55 am (#267 of 601)

Abracapocus-

I got the feeling that the power Dumbledore was referring to was the power of love. It has been said that Voldemort has never loved anyone. I think that's the power that is behind the locked door in the Dept. of Mysteries, and so I don't think that it only applies to Harry. Although I do think Harry can use his power of love to his advantage when he has to fight Voldemort.


Gerald Costales - Sep 26, 2004 5:41 am (#268 of 601)

off topic post: On the Voldemort thread there had been some posts that Voldemort had become a Vampire to obtain immortality.

Re: my post #262 was just cloud talk, highly speculative. I was wondering when people would start punching holes in it.

Great posts so far. Plan to jump in after observing and gathering my thoughts. ;-) GC


Abracapocus - Sep 30, 2004 4:57 am (#269 of 601)

Last night something hit me while reading on the forum, and I now believe that we have heard the whole prophecy. Of course there is more to what is going to happen, but I think we just may have heard the whole prophecy.

… and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal,

When the curse that rebounded to Voldemort left the scar on Harry’s forehead Harry was marked. When Voldemort used Harry’s blood in the rebirthing at the graveyard, they are now equal.

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...

At some unspecified point in time Harry and Voldemort will battle and one of them (the prophecy just does not reveal which one? why would the prophecy reveal the ending by telling us who is going to win?) will die at the hand of the other and if that does not happen, both will die.

Remember the second prophecy of Trelawney that was revealed to us just after Harry left his Divination test? It told us when and what but did not tell us who. I think JKR prophecies are meant to be vague else they would reveal too much about the story and not just what she wants us to know at the time. There was no possible way given what we knew that anyone (Harry or the reader) could have figured out who it was talking about at least until the introduction of Peter in the Shrieking Shack but I for one was so involved in the action, the prophecy was forgotten. I think this particular prophecy was designed to do two things? foreshadow events in POA and to set us up for the validity of prophecies so when we find out about the first prophecy, we will automatically believe it is true.

Why does she want us to know this information at this point in the series when we could have guessed this ourselves? I think it was information for Harry - to prepare him for his destiny.

Dungbomb deflector charm ready. Fire away.


Gerald Costales - Sep 30, 2004 5:27 am (#270 of 601)

Abracapocus - I agree with most of your post with a expectation to the following -

"When Voldemort used Harry’s blood in the rebirthing at the graveyard, they are now equal."

I believe the scar marked Harry as Voldemort’s equal. It doesn't mean you're wrong either.

Remember the rebirthing brew had the bone of Voldemort's father, Harry's blood, and Wormtail's hand. Of the three items, I believe Wormtail's hand is the most important. They didn't drain the blood from Wormtail's hand. The blood of Wormtail and the "Life Debt" Wormtail owes Harry went into the brew. (I'm hoping that Wormtail's blood will be another unseen detail like Lily's protection of Harry.)

I like the idea of the second Prophecy about Wormtail helping us accept the first Prophecy about Harry and Voldemort. Great post. ;-) GC
 
 


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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #271 to #300

Post  Potteraholic on Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:12 pm


rambkowalczyk - Sep 30, 2004 5:43 am (#271 of 601)

Abracapocus. good insight about the either must die at the hand of the other...

It’s referring to an event that hasn't happened yet. Brilliant!


Abracapocus - Sep 30, 2004 5:46 am (#272 of 601)

GC, on another thread I had proposed the idea of Harry's blood being the final factor:

Voldemort gives Harry the scar and passes some of him to Harry. Harry now has some of Voldemort inside of him which is why he can feel Voldemort through his scar. Harry is marked.

When Harry's blood is used, now Voldemort has some of Harry. This may explain how Voldemort is able to actively get inside of Harry's mind. Now they are equal.

Harry has some of Voldemort. Voldemort has some of Harry. Now they are equal. No canon evidence, just guessing on that part, but I kinda like it.

About the part where the blood left in Wormtail's hand will pass the life debt to Voldemort, I think JK Rowling addressed this in the most recent interview posted on her website.

Abra potters off to double-check Rowling's website.


Madame Librarian - Sep 30, 2004 7:54 am (#273 of 601)

What do you folks think about this subtle feature of the 1st prophecy?

At first (possibly even 3rd or 4th) reading, you think it's a looped prophecy--Sybill would have just kept repeating herself over and over if she hadn't snapped out of her trance. But, upon closer reading, the version DD shows to Harry the final line is not quite a repeat.

Opening line:

"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...."

Final line (or at least the final one we know):

"...the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies...."

This is not the first time I've brought this up, and I can't rally a gang of concerned citizens that see this as a huge clue, but I'll persevere in my campaign. So what's my point? Well, I think there's a possibility that just as Voldemort didn't hear the whole prophecy, neither did DD. Just ask yourself what would be the next line. Yeah, it's a long shot, but seems to help me accommodate all those shifts in tense and convoluted phrasing.

Anyway, I just bring this up now and then and see if anyone might respond with some good insight.

[**wanders off, muttering to self, "darn tricky woman...darn prophetic language conventions...darn lack of brilliance on part of self to come us with answers...."**]

Ciao. Barb


mrweasley - Sep 30, 2004 9:55 am (#274 of 601)
Edited by Sep 30, 2004 10:55 am

Mhm Barb, maybe you're just more sensitive towards those subtle differences... I always thought the last line just kinda "wrapped the whole thing up". ;o)

Abracapocus, there was one scenario you mentioned that we haven't really discussed yet: The possibility of a battle between Harry and Voldemort in which neither will die and therefore both will be doomed to death - because "neither can live while the other survives" (thus: if both survive, neither will live).

Um... sounds rather contradictory, doesn't it? "If both survive, both will die." Interesting thought anyway, no?


hawkeyetkdchick - Sep 30, 2004 1:02 pm (#275 of 601)

Abra-

I really like your idea of Harry being marked by the scar and equal when Voldemort uses Harry's blood. However, I always thought he was "marked as equal" from the beginning (when Harry got his scar). This is because Voldemort had to choose between Harry and Neville-which one posed the greater threat (which one was equal to Voldemort in power?). So Voldemort chose, and marked Harry as his equal. Also, Harry seems to have inherited a lot of Voldemort's powers before his blood is used to bring Voldemort back (the Parseltongue, etc.). But I do agree that the connection wasn't totally complete until Harry's blood was used. So I think it can go either way.

Barb-

I think that the last sentence will probably be important, but I don't think that Dumbledore missed any of the prophecy (it is very possible, though, and one day you will probably be saying "I told you so!"). I think there were a lot of tense changes because JK wanted to give us hints, but didn't want to give it away. I think she was trying to be sneaky but still have the prophecy fit what will happen between Harry and Voldemort. Does that make sense?


LooneyLuna - Sep 30, 2004 3:41 pm (#276 of 601)

The unfortunate part is at the end of Book 7, we'll all sit back and say, "So THAT is what the prophecy meant!"

I'll slap my forehead while downing a stoat sandwich saying, "How come I didn't see that?"

Toddling off to practice....


Abracapocus - Sep 30, 2004 5:47 pm (#277 of 601)

Mr. Weasley, I definitely see your point. They battle, Harry and Voldemort both live? yet the prophecy clearly states that neither can live while the other survives.

Maybe neither can live while the other survives has nothing to do with the battle. Maybe it has to do with something else now affecting them both that unless one of them dies by the hand of the other?


Abracapocus - Sep 30, 2004 8:09 pm (#278 of 601)

Gerald Costales post #271: The information I mentioned to you as having been on Rowling’s website was actually from the March 4th World Book Day Chat. My bad. Sorry. MauraEllen: Did the debt Wormtail has to Harry carry over to Voldemort when he sacrificed his arm to restore his body? JK Rowling replies -> No. Can't say any more than that!

Madame Librarian post #274: I also agree that the tense changes are relevant. The first two lines are in present tense: "approaches" and "born as the seventh month dies". Then it shifts to future tense "will be", "must die" etc. The last line just seems to repeat the first in the future tense. Why? I haven’t got a clue.

Gerald Costales #271 and Hawkeye post #276: Here is a quote from The Lost Prophecy, page 842, US version (Dumbledore to Harry): "You are forgetting the next part of the prophecy, the final identifying feature of the boy who could vanquish Voldemort. Voldemort himself would 'mark him as his equal.' And so he did, Harry, He chose you, not Neville. He gave you that scare that has proved both blessing and curse."

Dumbledore definitely says that the scar marked Harry, but I still cannot let go of the blood used at the rebirthing somehow completing a connection between the two or causing something that is reflected in the "neither can live while the other survives" line. Maybe that part of the prophecy, the blood and the gleam in Dumbledore’s eyes are related.

GoF, The Parting of the Ways, page 696, US version (Harry to Dumbledore) "He said my blood would make him stronger than if he’d used someone else’s?” Harry told Dumbledore." He said the protection my- my mother left in me? He’d have it too. And he was right- he could touch me without hurting himself, he touched my face."

For a fleeting instant, Harry thought he saw a gleam of something like triumph in Dumbledore’s eyes, But he next second, Harry was sure he had imagined it, for when Dumbledore had returned to his seat behind the desk, he looked as old and weary as Harry had ever seen him.

And perhaps later I will post something that again proves myself wrong? Or one of you will beat me to it.


Ann - Sep 30, 2004 8:38 pm (#279 of 601)

Madam Librarian, someone suggested on this thread, ages and ages ago, that the first bit of the prophecy could refer to whoever was coming into the bar at the time it was made ("The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches"), his parents have defied his demands three times ("born to those who have thrice defied him), and he was born in July ("born as the seventh month dies.") This rather clever theory suggested that it was Snape (or the DE who hear the prophecy) who was entering the bar, that he had made three futile attempts to make his parents join the DEs, and that his birthday is in July. The Dark Mark was supposed to be how Voldemort marked him as his equal. I thought it was a very clever theory, but not terribly likely, since the Dark Mark in fact marks Snape (and all the DEs) as subordinates, not equals.

But now that you've pointed out the difference, it occurs to me that the final line, in the future tense, makes that interpretation impossible, which may be why it is there. ("The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies" cannot possibly refer to Snape or the DE who overheard the beginning of the prophecy.)

There is also a repetition, similarly slightly modified, in Trelawney's second prophecy, so it also may just be the way these things are done....like all the dots....!


Her-melanie - Oct 1, 2004 5:16 am (#280 of 601)

I don't really see a problem with the tense...Since Jo uses the verb "approaches," that present tense verb implies impending future tense. As in, he approaches (present), he will be here soon (future). All the rest of the verbs after approaches are future tense. "Born to those who have thrice defied him; born as the seventh month dies": to be read as "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches. He WILL BE BORN to those who have thrice defied him; WILL BE BORN as the seventh month dies." It is just more poetic the way she worded it. It is sort of like implied future tense. At least, that's how I always read it; it seems like the last line leaves no other possible interpretation as to tense.


Her-melanie - Oct 1, 2004 5:27 am (#281 of 601)

Abracapocus, see post #100 of this thread; I proposed something similar to what you are saying about DD's gleam and the prophecy. (Sorry, I don't know how to link posts, and am too lazy to try. *yawn*)


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 1, 2004 7:19 am (#282 of 601)
Edited by Oct 1, 2004 8:20 am

Abra-

I have always felt that Dumbledore's gleam and the prophecy are linked, too. See my post: 237. Although no one seemed to like my theory.

Her-melanie-

In reply to your post #100: I think that the prophecy is kind of telling a story. First, Harry is born ("the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches"), then Voldemort tried to kill Harry-giving him the scar and marking him ("and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal"), and finally only one of them can survive ("and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives"). I think that Voldemort did not die when he gave Harry the scar because first Harry had to be marked as his equal, etc before the "neither can live" part can come true. Besides that little part, I think that your theory is a good one. I am just hoping that you're wrong because that would probably mean that Harry dies at the end.


Her-melanie - Oct 1, 2004 7:45 am (#283 of 601)

No, it doesn't necessarily mean Harry will die. My theory only mentioned one possible outcome having to do with a possible explanation of DD's triumphant gleam. DD I'm sure is holding out every hope that Harry will prevail; but he might look triumphant if he sees a way that even if Harry dies, Voldy might too. I don't actually think Harry will die. I think a lot of his loved ones will, and he will suffer. It is blind hope, but there it is.


Abracapocus - Oct 1, 2004 8:35 am (#284 of 601)

Her-Melanie: Good post (#100). I interpreted it the same way. One attacks the other one, then one must die as well. And up until the Graveyard scene, this may have held true.

- First attack, Voldemort attacks baby Harry, but Harry’s mother’s protection saves him. Voldemort loses his body and Harry receives his scar

- Second attack, Using Quirrell, Voldemort attacks Harry, but Voldemort isn’t corporeal so they cannot kill each other. And it is also obvious that some of Lily’s protection still exists as Quirrell cannot touch Harry.

- Third attack, Riddle attacks Harry, but since Riddle was a memory? from before the prophecy, it doesn’t apply to the fulfillment of the prophecy.

- Fourth attack, Harry’s blood is "unwillingly given" during the rebirthing. The brother wands repel one another. I believe there may be something more. Both survive.

- Fifth attack, Voldemort tries to possess Harry, but is repelled by "the power the Dark Lord knows not." Both survive.

I also agree that the prophecy is about Voldemort and Harry - only.

Yes, die means death; dead; ceases to exist forever in any form.

And as Hawkeye points out, the gleam in Dumbledore’s eye just may be related to what he knows of the prophecy.

As for Rowling’s hint about the careful wording of the prophecy, it would seem by her clue, a dissection of the prophecy from an all-knowing writer’s point-of-view may not be the correct approach in that they were Trelawney’s words. Of course they were from the writer, but they were from Trelawney. Dumbledore, while usually very close to the whole truth, is still only giving Dumbledore’s take on any given situation including the prophecy. What information any character gives is not from an all-knowing perspective.

I am reminded of a scene in Chamber of Secrets between Dobby and Harry. "I’ve just got one question, Dobby," said Harry as Dobby pulled on Harry’s sock with shaking hands. "You told me all this had nothing to do with He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, remember? Well?"

"It was a clue sir," said Dobby, his eyes widening as though this was obvious. "Was giving you a clue. The Dark Lord, before he changed his name, could be feely named, you see?"

It may have been a clue, but it was Dobby’s clue just as this is Trelawney’s prediction. While I think Trelawney’s prediction carries a lot more weight than Dobby’s clue, it came through Trelawney which is why Rowling made reference to herself and Trelawney when giving us the hint.


Her-melanie - Oct 1, 2004 8:51 am (#285 of 601)

I've been toying around with the idea that those posts giving importance to "at the hand of the other" may be on to something. Perhaps since their wands don't work properly against one another, they will have to use magic WITHOUT wands - pure magic. Someone brought this up before on this thread I think. This could be why it seems like Harry and Voldemort have both "survived" without detriment to the other, seemingly defying the prophecy. They can't use wands. If they try, something will always go wrong.


riddikulus - Oct 1, 2004 11:09 am (#286 of 601)

In Chamber we learned that a broken wand will cast the incantation back at it's user... thus, perhaps one of their wands will be useful, if something happens to it. What would happen if Voldy AK'd Harry and it reversed back to himself?

I do believe the power that Voldy knows not, is love. Harry is loved by so many... whereas Voldy is simply feared. And it will be that love that will save him, in the end, through friendships and sacrifices. Not to mention, he's got knowledge of the prophecy, where Voldy doesn't. This is a great power.


Abracapocus - Oct 4, 2004 6:58 am (#287 of 601)

JKR posed the question: Why didn’t Voldemort die? She said she believed the answer is unguessable. She also linked it to the prophecy. My first question is not why he didn’t die, but why did she mention this if we would be unable to guess? Did she want us to guess the specific steps he took or was there something related to the reason he lived that now affects the situation?

"I have gone further than anybody along the path that leads to immortality?" He did not say he had achieved immortality.

"It appeared that one or more of my experiments had worked." He did not die when the curse rebounded, but he does not know which of his experiments allowed him to live.

"a potion concocted from unicorn blood, and the snake venom Nagini provided" The use of snake venom and unicorn blood helped him achieve his weak body prior to the rebirthing.

Ronan to Hagrid: "Always the innocent are the first victims," he said. "So it has been for ages past, so is it now." I believe that the innocent Ronan is speaking of are specifically unicorns. "Ages past" implies to me that this has happened before the events in Sorcerer's Stone.

Bane to Firenze: "What have you been telling him?" growled Bane, "Remember, Firenze, we are sworn not to set ourselves against the heavens. Have we not read what is to come in the movements of the planets?" Could Bane be speaking of the same events to come as the prophecy?

Firenze to Harry: "Harry Potter, do you know what unicorn blood is used for?"

Obviously, Voldemort knew. I also believe that he had gone to such great lengths to conquer death before gaining power the first time, that it was part of what he had used.

Firenze to Harry: "That is because it is a monstrous thing to slay a unicorn," said Firenze. "Only one who has nothing to lose, and everything to gain, would commit such a crime. The blood of a unicorn will keep you alive, even if you are an inch from death, but at a terrible price. You have slain something pure and defenseless to save yourself, and you will have but a half-life, a cursed life, from the moment the blood touches your lips."

Drinking unicorn blood causes a cursed life.

Firenze to Harry: "Unless all you need is to stay alive long enough to drink something else"

In this case stay alive long enough to drink the Elixir of Life or in the second case use it to form a weak body until he could have the rebirthing. If Voldemort drank unicorn blood before gaining power, and he did not use anything else (Elixir of Life, for example) that assured immortality (he did say that he had not achieved immortality, he had only come close), wouldn’t he have had a "cursed life" at that time?

Tying it all to the prophecy:

JKR said she believed it "unguessable". I have read other similar posts from people much more insightful than I am, that involve Voldemort’s use of unicorn blood, therefore this particular idea is guessable.

Didn’t Dumbledore describe Harry’s scar as "both blessing and curse"? When Voldemort gave Harry the scar, Dumbledore said he also passed some of his power to Harry. What if he also passed this "cursed life" from unicorn blood or something else specific (but unguessable) to his quest for immortality? What if this is one of the reasons "neither can live while the other survives"? Harry has this "cursed life" now through the scar. He cannot live (an uncursed life) as long as Voldemort survives. And since we do not know exactly what a "cursed life" means, it may mean Harry will eventually die from it as long as Voldemort survives. The prophecy does not say that the reason "neither can live" is the same reason. Voldemort may be unable to live while Harry survives due to something Harry passed to Voldemort with his blood or for some other reason totally unrelated.

If you think the idea of something guessable (cursed life from using unicorn blood) or something specific but unguessable was transferred to Harry and relates to the prophecy, please post your ideas and perhaps we can expand on it collectively. If it is "dodgy" feel free to shoot it full of holes as well.


Ann - Oct 4, 2004 7:09 pm (#288 of 601)

Abracapocus, I think you are onto something with the "cursed life" observation. But I don't think Voldemort used unicorn blood when he was healthy, that is, before he gave Harry the scar and became Vapormort. It doesn't seem to be something you do until you are absolutely on the edge of death; the penalty for experimenting would be too great, as Firenze says. He has obviously been using unicorn blood since then, however, and must thus have acquired quite a burden of cursedness that looks likely to catch up with him. That may be another way in which the prophecy is self fulfilling.

Harry's scar is cursed enough without being tainted by unicorn blood: it is a bond with Voldemort, pure evil. Hard to imagine anything more cursed than that.


Abracapocus - Oct 5, 2004 5:09 am (#289 of 601)

Ann: I was thinking along the lines of his having used it in combination with something else - as a potion perhaps, if in fact unicorn blood was used. Since JKR had linked what Voldemort did so that he did not die the night he gave Harry the scar and with the prophecy, this was only one idea (using unicorn blood) and linking it to the prophecy by "he will mark him... maybe this idea will spark others and this forum will be the one to figure out the unguessable.

I do not endorse this idea fully, I just got carried away with the unicorn blood thing while trying to figure out the relevance of the link (what he did and the prophecy)- especially when I found so many things I thought supported it. The fact that JKR said that she didn't believe it (what he did) was guessable, it pretty much stands to reason that something as obvious as unicorn blood wouldn't be it. But of course it was a lot of fun researching and putting it all together. I have already begun another idea and will present it at another time that is more specific to Why Voldemort didn't die and the prophecy.

A truly obsessed fan, Abra.


Ann - Oct 6, 2004 8:25 am (#290 of 601)

Abracapocus, I don't think it was something that Voldemort did at all. He thinks it is; but I think it is in fact the effect of the prophecy--he couldn't kill himself, since he can only die at the hand of Harry. (I've said this before.)


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 6, 2004 2:27 pm (#291 of 601)

Ann-

I think that Voldemort did do things to make himself "invincible" BEFORE the prophecy was made. So the prophecy was only made because Voldemort could not be killed by the rebounded AK curse. Jo also states in her website that we should be thinking about what Voldemort did to make himself invincible, although she doesn't think it's guessable (all of this is in the "JK Rowling at the Edinburg Book Festival" article in the newspaper on her site). I think that is evidence that Voldemort did actually do something to himself. Also, I don't think that a prophecy has any power to save someone's life. It only tells what will happen in the future based on the actions of people. Therefore, Voldemort didn't die because of something he did, not because the prophecy said he wouldn't. There has to be a reason why he didn't die. I'm not very good at explaining things, so I hope this makes sense.


Abracapocus - Oct 6, 2004 5:38 pm (#292 of 601)

Here is the entire quote that I copied from another site: (underlines mine):

JK Rowling: "The first question that I have never been asked - it has probably been asked in a chat room but no one has ever asked me - is, "Why didn’t Voldemort die?" Not, "Why did Harry live?" but, "Why didn’t Voldemort die?" The killing curse rebounded, so he should have died. Why didn’t he? At the end of Goblet of Fire he says that one or more of the steps that he took enabled him to survive. You should be wondering what he did to make sure that he did not die? I will put it that way. I don’t think that it is guessable. It may be - someone could guess it - but you should be asking yourself that question, particularly now that you know about the prophesy. I’d better stop there or I will really incriminate myself."

It seems to me, the only concrete pieces of information it gives us is it does seem to put to rest the idea that it was something passed to him by family blood (protection from his dying mother, for example), or that he had to survive in order to fulfill the prophecy. It was something he did.

On the other hand (geez) she does reference something Voldemort says and that we should be thinking about that. Not that what he says is true. Tricksy Rowling.

EDIT: I started this post in complete support of Voldemort doing something enabling him to survive the AK. The last line however, was written after I proofread my post. Nope, now I am not convinced that it was something he did.

The thing I am convinced about (but doesn't belong on this thread) is that she was deliberately leading us. She asked the unasked question to make certain it was put out there.


Ann - Oct 6, 2004 6:30 pm (#293 of 601)

Abracapocus: On the other hand (geez) she does reference something Voldemort says and that we should be thinking about that. Not that what he says is true. Tricksy Rowling.

Exactly! He says that something he did kept him alive. "You should be wondering what he did...," she suggests--and the answer is nothing!. First she says it's not guessable; then she says, someone could guess it, then she says you should ask the question, "now that you know the prophecy."

If we can guess it, it isn't a spell or potion, since all the ones we know about (Philosophers' Stone, unicorn blood) simply work--there's no question. And he would know if someone had died to save him: if it had happened before Godric's Hollow, he would have known not to kill Lily; and if it had happened as his AK bounced, he would have seen it.

The fact that he doesn't know what saved him, and that he doesn't know the "either must die" part of the prophecy are two bits of ignorance that tie up. I think the "either must die" edict is what saved him: he can't die otherwise, even from his own AK. If prophecies are "true prophecies," they have that power, not in themselves, but because they are accurate reflections of some sort of divine Providence that does have the power to decree such outcomes.

Did you notice that all her new FAQ answers deliberately avoid the prophecy and all its ramifications? She gave us too much information at Edinburgh, and now she's trying to distract us!


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 6, 2004 7:21 pm (#294 of 601)

I still think Voldemort did something to ensure he wouldn't die. We might not be able to guess it because we probably have not encountered the spell/potion/etc that he used. We don't know a lot about the Dark arts-Voldemort's specialty. Also, a prophecy is just a prediction, nothing more. There is no divine power to keep someone alive. People's actions have the power to keep someone alive, however. For example, Lilly died to save Harry. It was not simply because of the prophecy that Harry lived-it was because Lilly sacrificed herself. And so, Voldemort must have done something to keep himself alive. It was not because of the prophecy that he survived. The prophecy was made because of these people's actions. JK is tricky, but she does give us some accurate information once in awhile, and I believe that this is one of the times that she's actually telling the truth.


Abracapocus - Oct 7, 2004 5:44 am (#295 of 601)

Of course I believe that JKR is telling the truth, but there are several ways we can look at that truth and have it still be true. In this post, I am looking at it in terms of the prophecy.

It doesn’t matter what we think a prophecy is, what matters is what JKR thinks a prophecy is.

My guess at what she thinks it is: Somehow (it doesn’t matter how) the seer glimpses the actual future. This means that Trelawney saw what is going to happen after all the characters have used free-will, made choices, etc.

For purposes of demonstration, let’s assume Trelawney actually visited the outcome of the event she has told of in the prophecy. She is there standing at the end event observing. Dumbledore is still sitting in the Hogshead but from Trelawney’s perspective, he is now in the past. She witnesses the end of the event and now knows what is going to happen? because from where she is it has just happened. During Trelawney’s visit, she also has knowledge of everything that has happened leading up to this event. We are dealing with something that relates to time travel only Trelawney didn’t actually travel to the future, she just saw it.

In this case the prophecy is not a guess or simply a prediction. Trelawney glimpsed the actual future. It doesn’t matter whether Trelawney saw it and reported it or not, it is still going to happen.

It doesn’t mean that Voldemort didn’t die because of the prophecy itself. He wouldn’t have died anyway? prophecy(report) or no prophecy(report).

All this having been said, there could be any number of reasons why Voldemort didn’t die with the AK. It could actually be that he did not die because of something he did, but maybe not. She said she didn’t believe it was guessable, but that we should be wondering about it, not necessarily trying to guess what it was. Her wording was quite clever in any event.

I have no idea yet of what full purpose in JKR's question, but one thing may have been to bring us to what she intended a prophecy to be.


Kwikspell - Oct 7, 2004 6:06 am (#296 of 601)

Ann: Did you notice that all her new FAQ answers deliberately avoid the prophecy and all its ramifications?

Well, she did say that she doesn't believe in fate--a statement that could have profound ramifications on the prophecy. (Granted, she didn't specify whether she was referring to "fate" in reality or the Potterverse...)


riddikulus - Oct 7, 2004 7:29 am (#297 of 601)

Maybe the protection that was in Harry, also rebounded unto Voldy and when Voldy transferred his things to Harry, Harry also transferred that spell back, it kept him alive, because Harry was still alive. We've seen what Voldy can do... he can keep his memory alive in a diary and use others to regain a body... then again people like Snape can stopper death too, and there's a chance there was a potion that kept them alive... there's also the Sorcerers stone and that could have kept Harry alive and rebounded unto Voldy. I guess before I started all this rambling, I should have read the end of 4 again to see what Voldy says... but there ya go.

My initial thought though, was that Voldy didn't do the dirty work himself. (Go kill the baby, Wormtail... yes, master.) He wasn't the one who AK'd Harry, so Harry didn't die...cause he couldn't due to the prophecy. So, whomever tried to kill Harry couldn't and when the protection in Harry rebounded, it couldn't completely kill Voldy either.


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 7, 2004 11:42 am (#298 of 601)
Edited by Oct 7, 2004 12:44 pm

Abra- "My guess at what she thinks it is: Somehow (it doesn’t matter how) the seer glimpses the actual future. This means that Trelawney saw what is going to happen after all the characters have used free-will, made choices, etc. " I agree with you. I also believe that something had to happen to save Voldemort when he tried to AK Harry. I guess we just don't agree on how Voldemort survived. I think he did something to himself to insure that he wouldn't die. That is just a Voldemort thing to do. He is afraid of death, so I believe he would do anything in his power to prevent his death. But anyway, I can't figure out what this has to do with the prophecy unless it is simply important because now Voldemort is mortal, and Harry will be able to kill him. Or maybe this is connected to the prophecy because Voldemort will try to make himself immortal again which could bring about the "neither can live while the other survives" scenario. For example, Voldemort might try to use Harry in a spell or whatever that will give Voldemort immortality again (and kill Harry at the same time), but something weird will happen (maybe because Voldemort has some of Harry's blood), and it will turn into a situation where only one can survive. Anyway, that's the best way I can think of to tie these things together.

Edit: Added a little to a sentence to make it easier to read.


Ann - Oct 7, 2004 11:58 am (#299 of 601)

I think Abracapocus makes a good point: it depends upon what JKR thinks a prophecy is and how it works. Remember, she was trained as a classicist, and all those Delphic oracles seem to have the power to make themselves come true--they are self-fulfilling. The more people try to avoid them, the more inevitable they become. Just like Voldemort marking Harry.

I did notice that she said she didn't believe in fate on her new FAQs. It made me wonder, but I think she's talking about life, not the Potterverse. She says she believes in luck and hard work--it sounds as if she took the question as a question about how she attained her present success. She has said elsewhere that she is a Christian, which presumably means she believes in Providence in some form.

Hawkeyetkdchick, she is telling the truth: she says that Voldemort says he did something; then she tells us we should be wondering what that was. That doesn't in any way guarantee that it was something he did. She clearly planned this out (she even tells us she told her husband she was going to give us these clues, and (according to plan) said it wasn't guessable. But then (not according to plan, I suspect), she says, well actually we could guess it, and we should think about it--especially now that we know the prophecy. Then she says (effectively), "oops! I'd better stop now...."

And Riddikulus, I don't think you can argue that Harry was protected by the prophecy at Godric's Hollow. He's vulnerable to Voldemort, and he would have died from the AK if his mother hadn't died to save him (and not incidentally, I suspect, the entire Wizarding World, assuming she knew the prophecy). I think we do know that it was Voldemort, not Wormtail or some other flunkey, who cast the AK, since we hear it during Harry's encounters with the Dementors.

(Sorry to go on so long--I've got a stack of essays to grade and I think I'm stalling!)


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 7, 2004 1:04 pm (#300 of 601)

Ann- You are right, it could go either way-that Voldemort could have survived due to something other than his preparations to keep himself alive. I have always believed it could be either one. But I believe that it was Voldemort's actions that caused him to survive even though I know there is another possibility. I guess we will just have to agree to disagree on this subject
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #301 to #330

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 11:34 am


riddikulus - Oct 7, 2004 1:05 pm (#301 of 601)

Ann, the prophecy wasn't something that went into effect upon Voldy doing something to Harry that night... it was prescribed to be so, through Trelawney’s, seer rantings, overheard by DD and somewhat overheard by others. Harry might just have been protected by the statements in the prophecy that night and we can only assume what else went on there that night, in respects to his mother doing something, as well. But what we do know is that Harry lived and Voldy’s vapor remained. If we use the prophecy, we might be able to see that it was that, that kept them both alive... now, Voldy must have done something to not die, but what kept them both alive, was what was worded in the prophecy. I'm merely suggesting that it was Harry that did something (or his mom) to keep him alive, therefore Voldy didn't die, because Harry didn't die. And regarding the Wormtail thing... I said it was my initial reaction... just something the slithering coward would do, to order others to do the dirty work and is one explanation why Harry didn't die...because of the prophecy. I don't feel that way anymore though, as you can see by my other theories. I don't believe Voldy would have lost his body, had a curse not rebounded upon him. We're all guessing here.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Oct 7, 2004 4:27 pm (#302 of 601)

"I'm merely suggesting that it was Harry that did something (or his mom) to keep him alive, therefore Voldy didn't die, because Harry didn't die."

My 2 knuts? I think the force in a locked room in the MOM saved them both. LOVE. I think Lily’s love was so great it protected them both, protected Harry from dying, and Voldie from being eternally lost.

Let the dung-bombs fly...

Of course the song "Killing me softly" comes to mind as I toddle off to another thread.

One more edit and I promise I will quit, for now. There are fewer things in this world stronger or more magical, an ancient magic, than a mother's love. I see that both protecting Harry and rebounding on Voldie, but I also see a ray penetrating through to the boy who never experienced a mother's love (Voldie), therefore not killing that one, but since Voldie can't understand this "magic", it doesn't kill him. Ok, now lost my train of thought, have fun ya'll.


Abracapocus - Oct 7, 2004 4:34 pm (#303 of 601)

There seem to be two opposing views on what a prophecy does. One is that the prophecy is active and has the power to create the conditions of its fulfillment. The other is that the prophecy is passive and does not control events. Our discussion seems to be hinged on which point of view we have.

Narrowing this down to the question: Why didn’t Voldemort die, he either did something or he didn’t. If he didn’t do anything, the prophecy could be a reason if you happen to believe prophecies are active, but if we can guess it, I am going to say that it is probably not the case.

I think what she was trying to lead us to is going to take a lot more digging than Voldemort having using spells or potions that we already know about, if in fact it was due to something he did. The fact that she does leave room that it could possibly be guessed though, does make me think that it isn’t going to be something that has yet to be introduced.

?He's vulnerable to Voldemort, and he would have died from the AK if his mother hadn't died to save him (and not incidentally, I suspect, the entire Wizarding World, assuming she knew the prophecy).? - Ann

Do you think Lily and James knew about the prophecy? I assumed they went into hiding for another reason, but that was before I knew about the prophecy. I don’t remember what we were told about their reasons for going into hiding except that Voldemort was after them. If the Potters knew about the prophecy then the Longbottoms would have had an equal reason to be told as the prophecy could have been about Neville as well. Besides Dumbledore, the Keeper of the Prophecies and the partial information Voldemort had, who else knew about the prophecy?


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 7, 2004 4:55 pm (#304 of 601)

I think the Potters and the Longbottoms knew about the prophecy. Dumbledore wouldn't keep that information from them. He only kept the information from Harry because he was young and Dumbledore cares a lot for Harry (not that he didn't care about the Potters or Longbottoms, but they were not young, and Dumbledore could not protect all of them).


riddikulus - Oct 7, 2004 6:15 pm (#305 of 601)

Abra, love the name and icon: In my opinion, I'd think most knew OF the prophecy... meaning, that it existed. But I’d have to state another opinion to say that most didn't know the contents of the prophecy, itself.

To what I said earlier about the prophecy: I think how JR means it, is that it's what's prescribed to happen... But all of us, regardless, can make choices to change your destiny. I wasn't suggesting that the prophecy made something happen... I was using it to show what was fated to happen (and did) happen, just that way. Thus, it was prescribed to be. Could it have changed? We'll find out...


Abracapocus - Oct 8, 2004 4:11 am (#306 of 601)

If that is the case, I wonder if the Longbottoms also went into hiding to protect Neville even though they were Aurors.

Riddikulus, I guess that would add another difference in opinion regarding the prophecy - that by choices it can be changed. I really have it firmly in my head that the prophecy is passive and it cannot be changed because it is the future. That is the only way I can think of where it won't contradict Dumbledore's lesson to Harry about our choices being what define us. If my belief about the prophecy were to play out however, then the idea of "choices" wouldn't be so obvious. Was it because of choices or because of the prophecy? If Harry manages something extraordinary to defy the prophecy and he succeeds - what a powerful wizard he would be indeed.


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 8, 2004 5:01 am (#307 of 601)

I have always thought that the Longbottoms went into hiding. I also thought that they tried to disguise Neville's magical ability so that Voldemort would choose Harry (remember when Neville said everyone thought he would be a squib?). But maybe this is a topic for the Neville thread...

I believe that the prophecy happens because of choices, but it can also influence choices as well. I am reminded of the Matrix, where the oracle says "And don't worry about the vase" or something like that. AFTER she says that, Neo turns, and knocks over the vase. If she hadn't said anything, he wouldn't have knocked over the vase. I think that's a good example of how a prophecy can influence choices. And yes, if Harry could defy the prophecy he would be a very powerful wizard!


Miss Caramel - Oct 13, 2004 6:51 pm (#308 of 601)

Hello, everyone! I have really enjoyed these posts. Great ideas! Here's mine: "either must die at the hand of the other"... I am one of those who believe that there is a 3rd party - Peter Pettigrew. Peter gave his hand to help bring Voldemort back. Therefore, Voldy owes Peter and it is my idea that he cannot kill Peter - to do so would destroy him. Also, Peter cannot kill Harry, as Harry saved his life. So, I see Peter having to kill Voldy, which will destroy him (Peter), since Voldy is so powerful. Also, I don't believe that Dumbledore is correct about Harry having to kill Voldy. He isn't infallible.

As for the power "the Dark Lord knows not", I think it's pretty clear that it is love. But rather than see it as a power he did not study or care to learn about, I think that he had never been loved and that is why he knew not. Like Hagrid said, something about Harry "stumped" Voldy that night. Because he had never experienced it before. He couldn't define it.

So, what did Voldy do to keep himself alive? All kinds of spells, I imagine. Perhaps containing unicorn blood, perhaps not. Keeping his memory preserved in a diary for sure. A photo or painting somewhere maybe? The possibilities are endless in a fictional world. Which is why JKR said it was probably not guessable.

OOH! I just thought of something else. What if one of the things he did to protect himself from death was to protect himself from love? Since it takes a lot of yourself to love somebody else, and someone like Voldy would think of that as a weakness (and not realize that love makes you stronger). But perhaps the protection he gave himself from love wasn't strong enough. DD said it was something he always underestimated. Maybe Lily's love was too strong for him and not only kept him alive (barely) but also destroyed the part of himself that was so opposed to it. Maybe it was what he did before to keep himself alive that was his downfall, not what saved him. Not fully thought out...it just came to me. If someone else has thought of this and I missed it, sorry for the repeat! Smile


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 13, 2004 7:14 pm (#309 of 601)

Miss Caramel-

Welcome! You have some great ideas! I also have thought that Harry wouldn't have to kill Voldemort, but your suggestion about Peter is interesting. I am following the whole Voldemort can't kill Peter and Peter can't kill Harry thing. Why do you think Peter will be the one to kill Voldemort? I can also see the whole deal as: Voldemort owes Peter a favor, and Peter owes Harry a favor, so maybe Voldemort will owe Harry a favor..? I also have to agree with you that the reason that we can't guess what Voldemort did to keep himself alive is because the possibilities are endless. So do you also think that Lily's love protected Harry AND Voldemort? I am not a fan of this idea because Lily did not love Voldemort (he had just killed her husband, was killing her, and was planning on killing her child!).

Voldemort could have protected himself from love.. I'll have to think more on that, there could definitely be something there.


Miss Caramel - Oct 13, 2004 8:55 pm (#310 of 601)

Hawkeye - My idea about Peter killing Voldy is basically the whole "hand of the other" thing. Peter's special hand, that is. Something JKR said a while back (sorry, I don't remember where or when), was that "something small" in COS would play a bigger role in HBP. Well, Scabbers was small... As for Lily's love protecting Harry & Voldemort, I don't believe for a second that she meant to protect them both. She probably didn't even mean to protect Harry in exactly the way she did. Unless I'm much mistaken (I love when they say that!), she merely asked for Voldemort to spare Harry and take her. Did she realize that it would do what it did? I doubt it. I don't have children, but I do have a niece and 2 nephews that I would die for, and I would certainly do something similar to what Lily did if faced in a similar (real world type) situation. Anyway, I think that part of that love rebounded with the curse unintentionally, just like the actual curse rebounded - because we know Voldemort didn't do that on purpose. Also, keep in mind that Harry and Voldemort share things mentally. They exchanged some sort of psychic bind that night that connects them to each other. I think it's perfectly reasonable to think that not only did Harry gain things from Voldemort (Parseltongue, etc.), but that Voldemort gained things from Harry as well.


Ginevra-Weasley - Oct 14, 2004 3:49 am (#311 of 601)

Hi Miss Caramel. You were wondering about the experiments of The Dark Lord that succeeded to protect him from The Avada Kedavra curse in your previous post. Well I would like to introduce to you an exciting hypothesis which is called The Changeling Hypothesis.

Brief Introduction of the Theory:

When Voldemort attacked Harry with the Avada Kedavra curse in Godric's Hollow and it bounced back on him, it split him in two: the inhuman parts that he'd acquired through magic and different Dark Arts transformations during his adult life, together with his conscious memories (1) and his human parts with his "soul" and his original innate powers and temperament with only a vague memory of his own name (2). Part (1) formed what is called Vapormort (Voldemort without a body as he was until the end of GoF) and part (2) connected with Harry - the closest living being in range (it's still uncertain whether Wormtail was there or not) and a very compatible recipient of these things (for lack of a better term).

Harry Potter thus became a hybrid entity containing two souls and two innate temperaments and Voldemort became a powerful embodied evil memory.

For more on this theory and how it explains many questions yet unanswered in this book click HERE.

I can't understand one thing that you said in your post: "Anyway, I think that part of that love rebounded with the curse unintentionally". Is it possible that love can be transferred like curse. I seriously doubt that it can be like that; for otherwise Voldy would have been somewhat reformed (maybe 0.01%).But it is not so. So can you explain this theory of yours in a deeper context in your next post?


Miss Caramel - Oct 14, 2004 5:12 am (#312 of 601)

Ginevra - I think that the love that may have rebounded with the AK did not have the power on Voldemort that it would have had on a normal person. The love destroyed him a little, not the other way around. If we can accept that Harry gained some things from Voldemort, then it only stands to reason that it could work the other way. Think of it this way, If someone throws a snowball at you and you put up your hands to block it, your hands might become cold and wet for a minute, but they wouldn’t be eternally frozen. My idea is that the love threw Voldemort off and weakened his defenses. That he despised and so underestimated love is his greatest weakness and led to his vaporization that night in Godric' Hollow.

As to the Changeling theory, I can't say I really agree with that. Here’s why...if Voldemort purposely made Harry what he is, why would he constantly try to destroy him? We haven't seen him making half-hearted attempts to harm Harry. We have seen him go all out in a number of ways to destroy Harry. If Harry were the incarnation of Tom Riddle as a child, I am sure that Voldemort would have been trying all this time to turn Harry to the Dark side (Sorry...too much Star Wars lately). Anyway, that's the way I see it...

Please feel free to agree or disagree. I have to get ready for work now...

EDIT: I just reread my post and thought it seemed a little rude-ish at the end...didn't mean it that way. I love a good debate! Plus, all these ideas being tossed around make for interesting stuff to read while waiting for book 6! and waiting, and waiting...


riddikulus - Oct 14, 2004 6:48 am (#313 of 601)

I think the prophecy is pretty straightforward. The one with the power to vanquish Voldy, would be Harry (or Neville). Yet, Voldy will mark the one with the power to vanquish him, as an equal, thus making it Harry. Now, if you want to bring Peter into the mix, you can argue that because Voldy gave him his silver hand, Harry will get him, somehow, to use that hand to help kill Voldy... but that's taking hand, quite literally. Of course, I don't discount it... or anything, at this point... but DD believes one has to kill the other for the other to live. Thus, in order for your theory to work, Harry must get Peters hand or Voldy must get Peters hand to use on the other... even then, whatever spell or whatever is used to ultimately defeat the other, must be done by that person, while using that hand. Having Peter do it, might defeat the prophecy, as he wasn't marked as an equal, even with his nice new hand.


haymoni - Oct 14, 2004 6:59 am (#314 of 601)

OK - this just dawned on me. Voldy needed "flesh of a servant...". Peter had already willingly blown off a finger in his escape from Sirius. What's one more?

Why did it have to be his WHOLE HAND????????


Her-melanie - Oct 14, 2004 7:28 am (#315 of 601)

I always thought it was funny that at the beginning of GoF, when Voldy and Wormtail are discussing the plan, Voldy says Wormtail will still be useful to him, just as useful as Bertha Jorkins. Wormtail asks if he is going to die as well, and Voldy replies that he won't die, and that what Wormtail will do will be very important: "...one (task) that many of my followers would give their right hand to perform." Voldy's sense of humor is great, eh?


Miss Caramel - Oct 14, 2004 5:32 pm (#316 of 601)

Riddukulus - "Thus, in order for your theory to work, Harry must get Peters hand or Voldy must get Peters hand to use on the other... "

I have to disagree with this statement. While you may believe that DD is correct about the prophecy, I believe he is incorrect. At least about Harry & Voldemort having to kill each other. Don't get me wrong, I think DD is probably the most intelligent and insightful character in the books, but he is still human. At this point, anything is possible.

Also, the prophecy really isn't straightforward. If it were, it wouldn't be open to so many theories about what it really means. It was worded very carefully so we would not easily be able to guess the full meaning of it.

I still think that Peter has a really important role in the next 2 books (hasn't JKR told us as much?). Why not this? She certainly has a way of throwing curves at us!


Abracapocus - Oct 14, 2004 6:38 pm (#317 of 601)

If we had learned about the prophecy before we knew about the attack at Godric’s Hollow, we would probably be debating How Will Voldemort Mark Harry? --assuming it is Harry because at that point, we wouldn’t know that either. Once the attack happened, we would immediately understand that line of the prophecy. It would be obvious, no one could have guessed it, but it would be obvious.

As for the possibility of Dumbledore being wrong about the prophecy? he was wrong about Sirius almost all the way through PoA. He just didn’t have all the information.


riddikulus - Oct 14, 2004 7:12 pm (#318 of 601)
Edited by Oct 14, 2004 8:15 pm

This wasn't my theory... I was trying to understand your theory, about using Peter and the hand. So, I merely stated my thoughts on your theory. Nonetheless, I accept that you disagree with my take on things.

As far as DD being wrong and human... well he's a Wizard and a very powerful one with lots of interesting devices. He can see things that aren't there, he knows things that haven't happened yet. Sure, he's got flaws.... but he's merely expressing, as we're all doing, his thoughts on what he personally heard.

But I agree with you that anything is possible... in almost every circumstance.


Miss Caramel - Oct 14, 2004 8:33 pm (#319 of 601)

Riddikulus & Abracapocus - I have to tell you both that I am loving this! I just recently started posting, having been observing various threads for about a month. I have read several posts from both of you and really think you have some very good ideas.

That said, I have thought and thought (and dreamed, etc.) about what the prophesy could mean - in it's entirety as well as the individual lines, as I'm sure we all have. How I view it is, the first 4 lines have already come to pass and the 5th line is pretty much figured out, even though we don't really have any specific answer from JKR. It's the 6th line that has got me thinking the most.

"and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ..."

Perplexing. It can either be very simple and direct (which is not really JKR's style), or it can be very cleverly disguised. I've had a couple different thoughts about what it could mean, but the whole Peter thing just keeps nagging at me! I have to do some more thinking...it's time for me to go to bed now, and right before sleep is when I have my best ideas...maybe I'll have a good one tonight...


Ginevra-Weasley - Oct 15, 2004 3:28 am (#320 of 601)

Hi Miss Caramel. In your last post in your words, "As to the Changeling theory, I can't say I really agree with that. Here’s why...if Voldemort purposely made Harry what he is, why would he constantly try to destroy him? We haven't seen him making half-hearted attempts to harm Harry. We have seen him go all out in a number of ways to destroy Harry. If Harry were the incarnation of Tom Riddle as a child, I am sure that Voldemort would have been trying all this time to turn Harry to the Dark side (Sorry...too much Star Wars lately). Anyway, that's the way I see it... ".I think you seem to be pretty confused about this theory. This theory never says that Voldy made Harry purposely what he is. This theory also never says that he knows that Tom's soul resides in Harry's body. I would also like you to go to JKR's website and see the "NEWS" column in which JKR herself says, "The other question that I am surprised no one has asked me since Phoenix came out-I thought that people would-is why Dumbledore did not kill or try to kill Voldemort in the scene in the Ministry. Although Dumbledore gives a kind of reason to Voldemort, it's not the real reason ....". This question and a lot of other are best explained by this hypothesis. I would beg you to click here and understand the CH a little better.

Sorry to all for being wandering astray form the theme of the thread but I really wanted this question to be answered here. By the way I have my own theory for the last line of the Prophecy: "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ..." Can the word "Other" mean a different person. If it is so then the meaning of the Prophecy changes considerably and instead translates "that neither Harry nor Voldemort can live while that other survives".


riddikulus - Oct 15, 2004 6:38 am (#321 of 601)

"I have read several posts from both of you and really think you have some very good ideas."

Thanks:)


Miss Caramel - Oct 15, 2004 6:15 pm (#322 of 601)

Ginevra - I must admit, when I read over that theory the first time you suggested it, it was late at night and I kinda skimmed over it *blush blush*. This time, I told myself, don't just skim it, read it. So I did. My whole thought before came from the very beginning of the essay where the author was speaking of another essay.

So, now that I've read the Changeling Theory, I have a new kind of idea about the prophecy. If that theory is true, then perhaps "the other" is Tom Riddle's soul inside Harry. I believe the essay said as much, although maybe not in so many words. If TR's soul is "the other", that would mean that the soul itself would have to destroy either the body in which it lives, or the embodiment of who it once was. Interesting.

So, how would a soul destroy someone? How COULD it? Good question...any thoughts?


Abracapocus - Oct 15, 2004 8:37 pm (#323 of 601)

"that neither Harry nor Voldemort can live while that other survives" - Ginevra-Weasley

How would the first part of the line be interpreted?

Miss Carmel, Me! Books! And cleverness... There are more important things... like my lexicon forum friends... abra blushes


Albus-Dumbledore - Oct 16, 2004 2:50 am (#324 of 601)

Hmmmm. Interesting theories. Well the "other" may not be Riddle's soul but he could well be HBP. We still don't know.


Madame Librarian - Oct 16, 2004 6:04 am (#325 of 601)

OK, I'm not sure I get the changeling theory completely, but here's another take on what happened: In order to move towards an immortal existence, Voldemort learned Dark magic that would allow him to relinquish his human essence (soul?) in the form of the Tom Riddle persona. Though not quite sure it would work just yet, he triggered it when the AK aimed at Harry rebounded. At the same instance Lily (inadvertently or purposely) invoked a charm that grabbed at a life force to replace the one that was being zapped out of her baby. Tom's just happened to be available because of the very Dark magic Voldemort used.

Of course, this was all happening at such lightning speed, that Voldemort himself was quite surprised when it worked. But, the catch for him was that he overdid it--a bit too much of the essence or whatever was released. He ends up a near-dead mist thing. Harry, on the other hand, has almost all of Riddle's essence in him--not quite a taken-over changeling, but more like a person given two lives.

I won't go so far as to say that Harry has all or even any of Tom's personality, unless it's that thing that is able to hook into Voldemort's mind and seem to want to do something evil. No, I'm talking about whatever it is that makes one alive and human, a spark or force, neither good nor evil, just there.

This could be supported by that "half-forgotten" friend feeling that Harry gets when he opens the Riddle diary in CoS (ch. 13), and the "in essence divided" line by DD in OotP (ch. 22). The recurring themes of duality and 'twinness' found throughout the story also support this two-in-one theory.

As to how the Prophecy might offer a clue, "the power the Dark Lord knows not" could be love, true, but it also could refer to that fact that Harry holds the essence of Tom in him. And later, when we read "...either must die at the hand of the other..." JKR is referring to Harry and Tom, not the current mortal version of Voldemort.

So how does the kid vanquish anyone? Here's a real stretch--in the final confrontation, Voldemort AKs Harry (or something), and the reverse of Lily's charm kicks in. Harry's been dealt a fatal blow and must give up life, Ah, but he's got an extra (like a cat with nine?), so Tom's life force is the one that goes. Harry's own is left more or less intact and can survive. When Tom's essence is released and desperately seeks a body, it comes to Voldemort and finds it's been replaced by whatever it is that Voldemort is now. Hugely angry, Tom-essence battles rebirthed-essence and wins, then weakened and defeated dies. Even if he doesn't die here, there will be some sort of redemptive payment--loss of magical ability, massive guilt and recognition of having experienced love through Harry, or some such clever thing.

So in my scenario, both the One and the Other are in Harry. And one of them has to go.

My, my. Way too much thinking for so early on a Saturday.

Ciao. Barb


Abracapocus - Oct 16, 2004 7:01 am (#326 of 601)

"At the same instance Lily (inadvertently or purposely) invoked a charm that grabbed at a life force to replace the one that was being zapped out of her baby. Tom's just happened to be available because of the very Dark magic Voldemort used."

Great theory - but Harry's life force would have had to be retained as well and not replaced. Right?


mrweasley - Oct 16, 2004 12:40 pm (#327 of 601)

I like your theory, Barb!

There are quite a few hints that suggest a connection of Harry with Tom Riddle / Voldemort that goes beyond a mere "power transference". The memory of the "half-forgotten" friend that you mentioned, the tendency of the Sorting Hat to put Harry into Slytherin, the "...but divided in essence" scene in Dumbledore's office in OotP...

Maybe the whole thing is metaphorical. Maybe Harry has to eliminate the evil aspect of the force that's been transferred to him by Voldemort - fight again himself, if you want...


Madame Librarian - Oct 16, 2004 1:32 pm (#328 of 601)

Thanks, folks. Abra, I agree, Harry would have actually survived that AK for this theory to work. I realized that as I pondered what I'd written after I left the house this morning. So a slight adjustment would be that maybe Harry would have survived the AK, but Lily didn't know that. She invoked her magic without taking that particular gamble. Makes sense, I think. The "doubling" of Harry's life force was an unforeseen side effect.

I believe that only DD realizes the truth here. That missing 24 hours after Hagrid takes Harry from the ruins at Godric's Hollow and delivers him to Privet Dr...remember that? What if DD was using that crucial time to attempt to heal baby Harry's minor injuries and to try to figure out what exactly was inside him now? Perhaps he determined that it was too dangerous to tamper with Harry's mind/force/whatever and to just do as much as possible to keep Harry healthy and safe. Even DD wasn't quite sure how it would all play out.

Ciao. Barb


Abracapocus - Oct 17, 2004 5:12 am (#329 of 601)

ML Barb - In addition to being in agreement with your theory, Dumbledore told Harry that the "power the Dark Lord knows not" was related to something studied in the DoM behind the locked door. It could be love. If it was love, Riddle had the capacity but not the opportunity (Voldemort repressed it), so the capacity for Voldemort was lost when Riddle's life force was lost. In my opinion, this would make Voldemort even more dangerous since his rebirth. Rowling said recently (on her website I think) that neither Tom Riddle or Voldemort had ever loved anyone - something about he couldn't be what he is if he had.

This would also fit quite nicely with Rowling's statement: "Certain crucial pieces of information in book six were originally planned for 'Chamber of Secrets', but very early on (first draft of Chamber) I realised that this information's proper home was book six. I have said before now that "Chamber' holds some very important clues to the ultimate end of the series. Not as many as six, obviously, but there is a link."

Tom Riddle


riddikulus - Oct 17, 2004 9:05 am (#330 of 601)

Of course, love, seems to be the best, if not most obvious, conclusion, regarding the power he knows not... but I’m wondering....

I just find it really odd that DD wouldn't look Harry in the eyes, before Voldy knew he was possessing him. This bothers me. Snape tells Harry, on his first day of Occlumency lessons, that Voldy knows he's able to feel his thoughts, upon sensing him doing so, when he was in the snake... well, long before that DD wasn't looking Harry in the eyes. And before that time, even, Harry felt that rage, when looking into DD's eyes... so what is that?

My guess, is that this power he knows not, beyond the obvious love thing, is something even greater and possibly the reason he couldn't look DD in the eyes. Because after the fight scene in the MOM, Voldy still knew about Harry possessing him, was taken over by Voldy, yet, DD not only looked Harry in the eyes but he sat right there and told him the whole prophecy. This just makes no sense to me, given the original fears with Voldy and the eye thing with DD. So, what's the deal?

Anyway, my thoughts are that the power he knows not... might be something other than love. And the hand of the other... might be something other than either of them. I do believe that Harry must kill Voldy or Voldy must kill Harry... but, I think, based on my above comments, that this HBP will be a key in either doing this. I believe there is another hand, in the mix.
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #331 to #360

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 11:40 am


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 17, 2004 11:37 am (#331 of 601)
Edited by Oct 17, 2004 12:42 pm

Riddikulus-

I have no idea how DD could have known not to look into Harry's eyes at the beginning of OotP. My suggestions is that maybe DD could deduce that there would be a connection between Harry and Voldy after GoF-maybe he's just really smart like that. DD wouldn't know when Voldemort would be able to see what Harry was seeing, but he didn't want to take a chance. One reason DD didn't want to talk/look at Harry too much was also so that Voldemort wouldn't know that Harry and DD had a stronger relationship than Headmaster and student, because Voldy could use it to his advantage. However, at the end of OotP, DD knew that Harry couldn't possess Harry for long because Harry possesses so much love. I have often wondered why Harry didn't feel that dormant snake anymore, though, when he was looking at DD at the end of OotP. DD says, in talking about the power that Harry has (that the Dark Lord knows not) "It was your heart that saved you." The power resides in the heart, so I am guessing it is love. Here is the whole quote from OotP (p.844, American edition)

"[Dumbledore speaking]'He did not know that you would have "power the Dark Lord knows not"-'

'But I don't!' said Harry in a strangled voice. 'I haven't any powers he hasn't got, I couldn't fight the way he did tonight, I can't possess people-or kill them-'

'There is a room in the Department of mysteries,' interrupted Dumbledore, 'that is kept locked at all times. It contains a force that is at once more wonderful and more terrible than death, than human intelligence, than forces of nature. It is also, perhaps, the most mysterious of the many subjects for study that reside there. It is the power held within that room that you possess in such quantities and which Voldemort has not at all. That power took you to save Sirius tonight. That power also saved you from possession by Voldemort, because he could not bear to reside in a body so full of the force he detests. In the end, it mattered not that you could not close your mind. It was your heart that saved you.'" (bold is mine)

EDIT: Is there a thread that talks about why DD could talk to Harry at the end of OotP? I've looked but haven't found anything yet. I'd like to hear others' theories on that...


mrweasley - Oct 17, 2004 11:10 pm (#332 of 601)

Your argumentation makes sense, hawkeye, and I guess it's the most logical and obvious conclusion to see love as the crucial power that Harry has so much of, and Voldemort not at all.

However, I agree with Riddikulus. It feels too... obvious. I have a feeling (without really being able to explain it in a satisfactory way) that it's something else.

"It was your heart that saved you". Necessarily love? What about loyalty, truthfulness, "purity of heart" if you want?


hawkeyetkdchick - Oct 18, 2004 5:08 am (#333 of 601)

MrWeasley-

That fact that it seems too obvious has bothered me, too. It may be a combination of a few things, with love being one of them. I definitely think love has something to do with it, though. From JKR’s website, she says that Voldemort has never loved anyone, so this would be power that he knows not. But it could definitely be a combination of a few things.


Madame Librarian - Oct 18, 2004 8:30 am (#334 of 601)

Aside from my wild theory on Harry having a doubled life force after the rebounded AK, and that is the unknown force, I'm thinking that the "power the Dark Lord knows not" would not be simply love (if love is what's meant), but how Harry uses that love. It's a pay it forward sort of concept. It's OK to only be loved when you are an innocent babe; as you grow older and begin to understand the world around you, love must be shared. I don't mean it has to be a grand passion kind of love, or even an intense mother-child love. No--a simple love based on understanding or empathy/sympathy will do nicely (think of Harry "connecting" with the snake at the zoo in PS). Doing something to pass that love on may be the key factor.

This would at least be a little less obvious, and would make for a richer, more complicated answer to the mysterious force. Still...I'd hope for even more (greedy little fan, ain't I?).

Ciao. Barb


Ann - Oct 20, 2004 9:02 pm (#335 of 601)

Madame Librarian: "I don't mean it has to be a grand passion kind of love..."

But I think it might be. As Harry grows up, he is going to grow past the love-of-parent kind of love, and learn about "romantic" love, love between equals, as he's begun to do a little bit already with Cho. And what better test of adolescent "true love" than to pit it against Voldemort, after all?!?


mrweasley - Oct 20, 2004 9:37 pm (#336 of 601)

Mhm... it all sounds like the "Pillar of StorgÈ" to me...:-)

(I think that the cheat was so successful, because the idea wasn't really bad: A connection to ancient Greek culture, and a division of the term "love" into its components of philia, eros, agape, and storgÈ)


Abracapocus - Oct 21, 2004 4:28 am (#337 of 601)

I have a question. Assuming Narcissa loves Draco, and we have no reason to believe that she doesn’t, would she have been able to place a charm on him as strong as the one Lily placed on Harry assuming each loved their respective children equally? I guess what I am trying to say is love is love and isn’t limited to good or evil people? and in these two cases the intention would be the same? a mother loving and protecting her child. Wouldn’t the character of the person creating the charm and the person receiving it be important? Couldn’t the 'power' be related to the concept of good vs. evil?


Ann - Oct 21, 2004 6:05 am (#338 of 601)

Abra, I think the fact that she's willing to sacrifice herself for her child means that there is a considerable quantity of "good" in the mother; a wholly evil person wouldn't do that.


mrweasley - Oct 21, 2004 7:03 am (#339 of 601)
Edited by Oct 21, 2004 8:03 am

Abra, that's quite a thought. Because we'd have to assume (or least to hope for the kids) that most students at Hogwarts potentially have a power like that - because they are being loved by their mothers.

However, as I understood it, it was the actual deed of sacrificing herself for her son that "activated" Lily's powerful protection.


Madame Librarian - Oct 21, 2004 8:03 am (#340 of 601)

Dear me, we get into a not so simple issue here with mother love and good vs. evil. In literature and in real life there are probably many cases of mothers (or parents) who have sacrificed themselves who were generally considered to be on the bad side. Many times it's just a matter of perspective.

Ciao. barb


mrweasley - Oct 21, 2004 9:32 am (#341 of 601)

Exactly, Barb. We're actually drifting gradually towards the "What Makes A Good Slytherin" thread, aren't we? Since all of the Slytherins have been shown as essentially evil so far, it is kind of hard to imagine them to be good. Can love for a son, however, be bad? If there's true affection between mother and son, does it matter that they are Slytherin and connected to Voldemort?


Her-melanie - Oct 21, 2004 11:04 am (#342 of 601)

It does seem as though Jo is trying to point out to us that in some people, the capacity to love is much stronger than in other's; hence, Harry's more-powerful-than-most magical ability. So, perhaps Narcissa couldn't have given Draco the same sort of protection since she may not be as capable of powerful loving emotion.


Madame Librarian - Oct 21, 2004 2:17 pm (#343 of 601)

Aaah, but what about the mother who is the epitome of the ambitious parent...ambitious for her child, I mean. I'm thinking here of someone like Livia from I, Claudius. She did seem to sincerely love her kids until they got older and somehow didn't live up to her expectations (i.e., to rule the civilized world according to her ideas). She so loved them and wished them to succeed that she poisoned anyone in their way. OK, an extreme example. But think of the musical "Gypsy." Based on the life of Gypsy Rose Lee. Now hers was a mom, a classic pushy, backstage momma. She really messed up her kids, but you can't say she didn't love them.

Love is such a subjective thing that I'm reluctant to venture a judgment on whether a mother's love is or is not a powerful loving emotion. I can only observe and then judge how a person acts, not what they feel.

Ciao. Barb


mrweasley - Oct 22, 2004 3:51 am (#344 of 601)

It is tricky, isn't it? I'm thinking of the parents in "The Virgin Suicides" who had so much love for their children, and who literally loved them to death.

I'm afraid we're getting a bit trapped in the complex world of psychology, but somehow there's probably no other way to answer the question of "Why does Harry have this powerful protection?" but the psychological approach.

I guess it's hard to tell whether other kids would have the same protection if their mothers got into a situation like Lily, and reacted like Lily - how can we know? But maybe we could assume that any mother who is ready to sacrifice herself like that has the potential of giving her child a protection just as strong as the one Lily's given her son.


Abracapocus - Oct 22, 2004 3:52 am (#345 of 601)

Madam Librarian said, "Love is such a subjective thing". That is exactly the point I was attempting to make.

Oh dear, I didn't mean to lead the discussion toward "good" mothers vs. "bad" mothers. I only meant it as an example. Why couldn't it be "goodness" that is Harry's power which would qualify love, truth, honesty, sacrifice, compassion, etc?

Ack, that is what I get for posting before the coffee melts away the cobwebs in my brain.

It was (the goodness in) your heart that saved you."

EDIT: Has Voldemort or Tom Riddle ever cared for or loved anyone? Now, that’s a cracking question to end with - very good. No, never. [Laughter.] If he had, he couldn’t possibly be what he is.

Not ‘who he is’ but ‘what he is’ - the personification of pure evil perhaps?


Her-melanie - Oct 22, 2004 4:46 am (#346 of 601)

I didn't mean that Narcissa is a bad mother, or that she doesn't feel love for her son. I am only thinking of Dumbledore's speech to Harry, "It is this power that you possess in such large quantities...". I know we don't KNOW for sure it is love. It could be raw emotion or something like that. If it is love, Jo seems to be saying that people have this capacity in different amounts. Voldemort would be an extreme case of not having it at all. So, even if you are a parent (and I believe there is no greater love than a parent for his/her child), you would still only be capable of loving your child to the extent of YOUR OWN CAPACITY, which is different for different people. This idea is a good one for Jo's books because it gives a picture of people as more 3-dimensional than just good/evil. So, it's not a question of good/bad mother, only of individual emotion, which seems to me to be a strong element of the series as a whole. I didn't mean this to be so long, only trying to clarify.


Madame Librarian - Oct 22, 2004 5:02 am (#347 of 601)

I can't honestly remember where I mentioned this, but a few days ago I commented that maybe it's not just love you receive, but the capacity to move that love along--the pay-it-forward aspect--that distinguishes the good vs. evil aspect.

And...with Lily's sacrifice we do have to account for the pure magic of the charm she invoked. It was something that hasn't been clearly described or even vaguely described for that matter, but surely it enhanced to a great degree the in-rush (is that a word?) of love Harry received. So, JKR has the magic aspect to help explain this unknown quality, as I'm sure she will do.

Love--almost as tricky to discuss as (aaiieeee!) time.

Ciao. Barb


Ann - Oct 23, 2004 6:09 am (#348 of 601)

Madame Librarian, do we really know that Lily invoked a charm that protected Harry? I've seen that argued and often just assumed, but there is no hint of her doing anything magical in the events that Harry remembers under the influence of the Dementors in PoA. She simply blocks Voldemort's path to Harry and begs him to kill her instead. I think JKR's point is that the love implied by that sacrifice, alone is what gives Harry such powerful protection. Dumbledore implies that there was some magic involved in strengthening that protection when he placed Harry with Petunia, but I think that what saved Harry at Godric's Hollow was not magic, but Lily's love. Wouldn't that be enough?


Madame Librarian - Oct 23, 2004 6:18 am (#349 of 601)

Good point, Ann. I hope to have some time today to pore over the books for all references to that horrible time. I have a loaded day ahead of me, and may not get to it. I do recall that it was DD who planted the idea of something magical invoked at that moment, but you're right to ask if he meant in a general way that mothers who sacrifice themselves produce this magic unconsciously, or are we dealing with a magical charm placed on Harry by a mother who knew to the second before death what she needed to do for her baby.

Ciao. Barb


John Bumbledore - Nov 17, 2004 12:30 pm (#350 of 601)

I've been pondering the either/neither pairing of opposites and the live/survive as well.

It seems clear to me that either means one or the other but not both. What logic refers to as and "exclusive or." This gives one strong reason why Dumbledore does not try to kill VM in the battle in the MoM.

Now on the use of live vs. survive. To live implies that one is happy with need fully met and able to enjoy some luxuries. To survive means to meet the merest of one's needs. One may be Underfed, but alive, with out shelter or extras in one's life.

"He will have power the Dark Lord knows not..." is this a reference to love? Harry is loved by his mother; she gives her life to save Harry in the greatest and strongest show of love, self-sacrifice.

Dumbledore, however, points out in OotP that the power is locked in a room at the MoM, and that Harry has this power in greater measure than any other wizard alive. (It is after he tells Harry the prophecy, but I do not have my book, can someone find the reference?)

This power may not be love, and it does not seem to be ambition, but it may be courage or loyalty.

Bumbledore.


Gerald Costales - Jan 15, 2005 6:21 am (#351 of 601)

Posted in the Fawkes thread as post # 200. Thought it would fit here also.

In two Dark moments Fawkes is present or his birdsong is in the background. The first instance was when Harry faced Tom Riddle and the Basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets. And the second instance was when Harry was trapped in the Graveyard surrounded by Death Eaters and facing Voldemort.

Also, Fawkes is indirectly present in that Graveyard battle because his tail feather is in both Harry's and Tom Riddle's wands. (Voldemort should have received his wand as Tom Riddle not as Voldemort.) What came first Fawkes or the Yew wand (Tom's wand) or the Holly wand (Harry's wand)? FAWKES

Fawkes even predates the Prophecy. Could Fawkes' magical presence be the hidden force driving the story and not necessarily the Prophecy?

?The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches . . .

Born to those who have thrice defied him,

born as the seventh month dies . . .

and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal,

but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not . . .

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives . . .

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh dies . . .?

I've assumed that Fawkes was owned by Godric Gryffindor. But what if Slytherin owned Fawkes.

"and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, . . ."

Couldn't it have been Slytherin who marked Harry by giving Harry his Holly wand with Fawkes' tail feather as its core? There are three Dark Wizards that we know of - Salazar Slytherin, Grindelwald, and Lord Voldemort. The Prophecy maybe talking about two Dark Wizards a past one Slytherin and the present one Lord Voldemort.

"and the Dark Lord (Slytherin) will mark him as his equal,

but he (Harry) will have power the Dark Lord (Voldemort) knows not . . ."

Just another monkey wrench in the interpretation of the Prophecy. ;-) GC


Thomas Phifer - Feb 3, 2005 6:28 am (#352 of 601)

OK Here's my take on the Prophesy.

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ...

Ok, Harry Potter is coming he's gonna be born in late July by his parents who have fought Voldemort a few times already (sadly they're dead now though) Harry is Voldie's equal and Voldemort has cheated death because he should of died when the curse reflected back on him and Harry should of died when Voldie did the actual curse! So by the laws of all that is sacred one needs to die! So they are now mortal enemies. Voldie has cheated death because he did something special to live forever. Harry is mortal however. Voldie will inevitably kill Harry or they will both die. Or something like that.


Sticky Glue - Feb 5, 2005 4:21 am (#353 of 601)

Voldie is no longer immortal, He says to Harry that when his plan for an immortal life using the stone failed, he would accept a mortal body instead. I also think that using Harry blood to create his body, will be part of his down fall.


StareyedSlytherin - Mar 25, 2005 6:00 am (#354 of 601)

Voldy may have said he'd accept a mortal body, but when his original one was destroyed by the curse, he still remained behind. If anyone tried to get rid of him by just killing his body, I'm pretty sure he'd eventually be back. In that sense, he is immortal. According to the prophecy, only Harry has the power to rid the world of his spirit.


spinowner - Mar 29, 2005 10:35 am (#355 of 601)

I don't have the time or the inclination to read 354 posts, but I wanted to mention this even if it has already been covered. I do not think that "the other" in the prophecy refers to a third individual. Suppose for a moment that "the other" is a third party. The statement that "neither can live while the other survives" means that BOTH "the one" and "the Dark Lord" would have to be die. If "the other" in the first part of the that sentence is a third person and "the other" in the second part refers to either "the one" or "the Dark Lord", then and only then would a third party be a possibility. To me, it's a stretch to think that JKR would do that.


Madame Librarian - Mar 29, 2005 12:05 pm (#356 of 601)

This post could easily fit in any number of threads, but it was stimulated by a discussion on the "In the End" new thread. We were talking there about the possibility (RPS's idea, among others) that before anything can resolve to either a happy or tragic ending, the "merged" essences of Harry and Voldemort, for which we have had numerous references and allusions throughout the story, will have to split apart before the Prophecy is fulfilled. (Hey, I'm grossly paraphrasing here, so I apologize. Read almost any one of the excellent posts by Round Pink Spider on the "In the End" thread to get the gist of what we're chatting about).

So, after that wordy and somewhat unclear introduction, I'd like to offer a subtle alternative to the concept of merged essences. Despite the obvious and easily listed references to a merger--shared Parseltongue, visions involving Voldemort's thoughts/activities, pain in Harry's scar when V is near, Harry's emotions being shanghaied by V's emotions, clear comments by DD to Harry, etc.), I can't shake the image of something that would be the opposite of a merger--a fracture.

When that AK rebounding, maybe a chunk of Harry traded with a chunk of V. So each one of them has a piece of "the other" trapped inside them. Can we parse that phrase in the Prophecy that way and come up with some cool new insight on things?

I don't have an answer; I need to marinate this a bit. Just thought I would put it down for others to either consider as worthy of pondering, or to give you all something to use for dungbomb tossing practice.

Ciao. Barb


Ponine - Mar 29, 2005 2:08 pm (#357 of 601)

"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies...and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have powers the Dark Lord knows not...and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..." (OotP, pg. 841)

Either must die at the hand of the other... OK, if Peter pelts a pebble at Penny, hitting her in the head (I know, nasty thing to do), and the pebble ricochets of Penny's thick head and back to Peters forehead, killing him, then would anyone actually be able to say and mean that Peter died at the hand of Penny? To me, that sounds odd, but English is not my native language, and so I am hoping for input. I am wondering thus, could it be that, as Harry did not play an active part in this exchange whatsoever, Voldemort could not die, as it would technically be a freak accident or suicide? But, as the prophecy goes on.. Neither can live while the other survives.... So, Voldemort could not live, either... But then again, that is exactly what happened? (Baad sentence..) Harry survived, while Voldemort went on as something less than (a ghost, spirit, alive).

and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal,... Well, that one is up for debate, but surely the scar as well as the fact that Harry is perceived as one of V's two top threats...

and either must die at the hand of the other... interesting way of putting it...

for neither can live while the other survives.. Harry lived. Voldie, not so much.

I honestly have started to consider that that none of them necessarily have to die in order to fulfill the prophecy (and remember, there are worse things that death, Tom...). I think that part is taken care of already...??

A little jumbled, but I wanted to throw some recent thoughts of mine out there, especially as I really liked Barb's brain pooling:) (setting up my newly patented dungbomb-resistant umbrella...) (with room for two, Barb, if need be:)


Joanne R. Reid - Mar 29, 2005 3:07 pm (#358 of 601)

Hi,

I am reminded of the spindly whirring instrument DD used when Harry was telling about Arthur Weasley.

A single green snake emerged. DD questioned it, something like, "But in essence divided?" The vaporous serpent snake split into two serpents.

So, DD was asking the question as we are. It would appear on the basis of DD's findings that Harry and Voldemort are indeed united in some way. At the same time, they are divided in their essence.

Somehow, these divided entities must be resolved for the prophecy to affect one and not affect the other.

Thanks,


Ruthie - Jun 6, 2005 10:23 pm (#359 of 601)

This thread hasn't been used in a while, I hope someone’s still reading!

Madame Librarian said a while ago (post 325) **In order to move towards an immortal existence, Voldemort learned Dark magic that would allow him to relinquish his human essence (soul?) in the form of the Tom Riddle persona. Though not quite sure it would work just yet, he triggered it when the AK aimed at Harry rebounded. At the same instance Lily (inadvertently or purposely) invoked a charm that grabbed at a life force to replace the one that was being zapped out of her baby. Tom's just happened to be available because of the very Dark magic Voldemort used.

Of course, this was all happening at such lightning speed, that Voldemort himself was quite surprised when it worked. But, the catch for him was that he overdid it--a bit too much of the essence or whatever was released. He ends up a near-dead mist thing. Harry, on the other hand, has almost all of Riddle's essence in him--not quite a taken-over changeling, but more like a person given two lives.

I won't go so far as to say that Harry has all or even any of Tom's personality, unless it's that thing that is able to hook into Voldemort's mind and seem to want to do something evil. No, I'm talking about whatever it is that makes one alive and human, a spark or force, neither good nor evil, just there. This could be supported by that "half-forgotten" friend feeling that Harry gets when he opens the Riddle diary in CoS (ch. 13), and the "in essence divided" line by DD in OotP (ch. 22). The recurring themes of duality and 'twinness' found throughout the story also support this two-in-one theory.

As to how the Prophecy might offer a clue, "the power the Dark Lord knows not" could be love, true, but it also could refer to that fact that Harry holds the essence of Tom in him. And later, when we read "...either must die at the hand of the other..." JKR is referring to Harry and Tom, not the current mortal version of Voldemort. ** end of Madame’s post

This seems to make a lot of sense to me. Perhaps Harry and Tom's essence will be separated somehow ("In essence divided" the snake splits in half and they start "coiling and undulating in the dark air" then DD has a look of grim satisfaction) and either Tom will kill Harry, or Harry will kill Tom (either must die at the hand of the other) - destroying Voldemort at the same time.

Any thoughts?


Aurora Gubbins - Jun 7, 2005 5:55 am (#360 of 601)

Ruthie; Do you mean that Tom intentionally attacked Harry under the impression that if Lily got in the way, then the AK would rebound and complete a long and complicated spell to give Tom immortality? Like, Tom was going willingly to death in the hope of his natural life coming to an end and his new form of existence (immortality)would begin?

Based on Jo's answer to the FAQ, I would say have a really good read of it.

If I've misunderstood, I'm sorry - can you clarify?

Aurora xx
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #361 to #390

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 11:45 am


Ruthie - Jun 7, 2005 4:25 pm (#361 of 601)

I think that Voldemort took a lot of precautions on his way to greatness so that when/if he was defeated he would not die altogether. He went to the Potters house intending to kill James, Lily and Harry, but when his AK curse backfired he 'activated' the spell that that would keep him alive. He did not plan on using it at this point it was just necessary. I definitely think he wanted all the Potters dead that night and his body and soul left in tact


Aurora Gubbins - Jun 8, 2005 4:03 am (#362 of 601)

Ah! Now I understand. Good idea, Ruthie

Aurora xx


Ruthie - Jun 8, 2005 4:51 am (#363 of 601)

Took me some close reading to understand too Aurora:) But the idea wasn't mine, it was discussed by Madame Librarian and a few others I think. I just thought it worthy of another mention. It does leave the question of how Harry and Tom will be separated though...


Miriam Huber - Jun 8, 2005 7:43 am (#364 of 601)

I find this quite funny. We are agreed, I think, about the importance of Dumbledore’s comment "in essence divided?". But we interpret it in exactly opposite ways (assuming I really got the point of your theory, Ruthie, if not, please accept my apologies).

I understand it to mean that Harry and Voldemort/Riddle (who I take as one and the same, only with changed name and "magical transformations" undergone, but no changing of essence) have always been and are at the moment two separate people. The "bit of him" that Voldemort, according to Dumbledore, transferred without meaning or even realizing it (if he had realized, he might have guessed that Harry had some access to his mind before!) just gave Harry that "mirror into Voldemort’s mind", his scar (the description is from JKR’s answer to the Neville-prophecy-question, though no exact quote.)

I imagine Dumbledore feared Harry and Voldemort might be so tightly bound together that they could not be separated. This could have meant that you could only kill Voldemort when Harry died, too. And it could have meant that there were no possibility of shielding Harry against Voldemort intrusions - like Harry feared when he overheard Moody’s "possessed"-comment in St. Mungo’s.

But obviously Dumbledore doesn’t think either of these things. And he doesn’t because the instrument told him that Harry and Voldemort were not that tightly connected, but "in essence divided". That is how I explain his "look of grim satisfaction" at the instrument’s answer. It is obviously a good answer - for him, for Harry, and for us, and I can imagine no other good answer to that question (given we all understand it right) than that Harry is not Voldemort’s shadow, Voldemort’s (or Riddle’s) essence, but "in essence", essentially himself.


Choices - Jun 8, 2005 8:51 am (#365 of 601)

Good explanation Miriam - I agree with you.


Ruthie - Jun 8, 2005 5:40 pm (#366 of 601)

I think I see where you're coming from Miriam and I agree with what you say about Harry being "in essence" himself.

The theory says that when Voldemort saved himself from the AK curse: "Voldemort himself was quite surprised when it worked. But, the catch for him was that he overdid it--a bit too much of the essence or whatever was released. He ends up a near-dead mist thing. Harry, on the other hand, has almost all of Riddle's essence in him--not quite a taken-over changeling, but more like a person given two lives. " So some of Tom/Voldemort's "essence" was transferred into Harry.

I believe DD asked the snake if Harry would die when Voldemort was killed and the snake said yes because some of Tom/Voldemort was in Harry. But Harry could be separated from Tom/Voldemort because there are two different types of essence in Harry's body - one Harry and one Tom/Voldemort.

Sorry if that makes absolutely no sense!

Ruth:)


Joanne R. Reid - Jun 9, 2005 5:26 am (#367 of 601)

Hi,

Wow! What great ideas!

Although I understand what you're saying Ruthie, I'm not convinced. I'm sure that you could be absolutely correct. It's just that when I read that passage, I breathed a sigh of relief. I thought that DD had just determined that Harry and Voldemort were two separate entities. To me that meant that Voldemort had not possessed Harry, even though there was a mental connection between the two of them. Since that was my original thought, I'm going to agree with Miriam, et. al.

Still, you have raised a nagging doubt. There is only one way to resolve it. Accio! Half-Blood Prince!:-D

Thanks,


Ruthie - Jun 11, 2005 3:10 am (#368 of 601)

Fair enough Joanne! Maybe if we all say it together..... Accio Half Blood Prince! I actually don't know what to think any more, there are so many different ideas and theories!: )


MickeyCee3948 - Jul 1, 2005 5:48 pm (#369 of 601)

I have always believed that Harry's scar contains Voldemorts essence and that Harry will find the ability to defeat Voldemort by reading or interpreting the abilities that the scar transferred to Harry.

Does that make sense?

Mickey


Mrs Brisbee - Aug 2, 2005 5:49 am (#370 of 601)

Rowling clears up a few things about prophecies in HBP, "Horcruxes".

Prophecies are not always fulfilled. So prophecies are more like directions on how to get somewhere: Go east, and you will come to a river. Go a little to the south and you will see a bridge. Cross the bridge and you are on the other side. The trick is that you don't have to follow the directions; you can go somewhere else if you want. But the facts in the prophecy are true if the directions are followed. If you go east, there is inevitably a river. Voldy follows the prophecy, and marks Harry as his equal. So prophecy can be a valuable resource for information, but caution must be used.

I wonder though if Dumbledore isn't putting too much stock in the prophecy himself. He seems to be basing many of his actions around Harry being "The One". Dumbledore doesn't seem to rely on the Order to help with Horcruxes, except for Super!Healer Snape. But he lets Harry in on it, and has Harry tell Ron and Hermione-- who must inevitably become targets of Voldemort and the DEs. We seem to be missing a few pieces of puzzle here. What would make Dumbledore believe that Harry is the only one capable of finding and destroying the Horcruxes?


Ms Amanda - Aug 5, 2005 3:56 pm (#371 of 601)

"What would make Dumbledore believe that Harry is the only one capable of finding and destroying the Horcruxes?"

I don't know. There must be something like a lesson about trust, loyalty, and love, that helps break the Horcruxes. Or maybe something about having a soul that is entirely whole. I feel that Harry knows that he needs his resources to solve the puzzle, but he feels compelled to try it alone because that is how he saw Dumbledore doing it. After we learn about Dumbledore's family, I think that Harry will realize that Dumbledore did NOT work alone. He has a support system, including his friends in the Order of the Phoenix.

I mean, let's try to reason something out here. Dumbledore tells Harry that Voldemort cannot be destroyed without first destroying the horcruxes. And he tells Harry that Harry will be the one to destroy Voldemort, or attempt to, because Voldemort put his faith in the prophecy and made Harry the wizard to do it. I think it is interesting that if Voldemort would just walk away and truly not worry with Harry anymore, the prophecy in some terms might just wither up and blow away. But we know from GoF particularly that Voldemort is obsessed with Harry, very dangerously so. (Isn't it ironic that Voldemort might have done well to have listened to Wormtail about not using Harry as the enemy?)We also know that Harry is capable of destroying Horcruxes, as he destroyed the diary. Will there be something special about Harry, ultimately, that allows him to destroy the Horcruxes. Or is it just that Harry is more determined than others to make it happen, and Voldemort exposes himself to the danger of Harry because of the prophecy?

I guess what I'm saying, to summarize if I can a quite sloppy post of mine, is that Harry may not try to destroy all the Horcruxes by himself (that is not a part of the prophecy), that what enables him to survive the curses is his determination which is fueled by love (which is in the prophecy), and that ultimately Harry will face Voldemort because Voldemort wishes it (because he holds too much stock in the prophecy).


Kevin Corbett - Aug 5, 2005 5:17 pm (#372 of 601)
Edited by Aug 5, 2005 6:21 pm

I kind of felt like the truth about the Prophesy was a bit of a let down. The whole "it's only significant because Voldemort thinks it is", the whole bit about being dragged into the arena or going with your head high, I should have seen it coming...but the nature of "prophesy" in the series is sooo confusing. JKR and Dumbledore are constantly deriding it, saying that its only significant because LV thinks it is. But where do these prophecies come from anyway? The way Trelawney gives them is a lot like the Delphic Oracles---she goes into a trance, seeming possessed by a higher power, and then gives her prophesy. But who possesses Trelawney and all the other Seers when they give "authentic" prophesies, and if they really have no meaning or validity outside of people's interpretations, why are there all these elements like the prophesizer forgetting, the deep voice, etc., that seem to suggest they have validity? It seems like JRK wants it both ways, like she wants Harry both dragged into the arena and holding his head high at the same time.


Mrs Brisbee - Aug 6, 2005 5:37 am (#373 of 601)

We also know that Harry is capable of destroying Horcruxes, as he destroyed the diary. Will there be something special about Harry, ultimately, that allows him to destroy the Horcruxes. --Ms Amanda

It must be something along those lines. Perhaps the bit of Voldemort that Voldemort accidently put in Harry protects him from some awful backlash that might usually happen when a Horcrux is destroyed.

Kevin Corbett, I was relieved by Rowling's explanation of prophecies. But I don't think they are meaningless outside of people's interpretations. They are like roadmaps; in that direction, you will inevitably find this. Trelawney’s second prophecy about Voldemort returning to power was very useful. It told Dumbledore that Voldemort would be back in power soon, not sometime in the far future. It gave Dumbledore the perfect opportunity to tell Harry about the first prophecy and explain what was going on, but Dumbledore chose not to prepare Harry for what he believed was his future. And I do see what you mean by Dumbledore deriding prophecy, yet seemingly putting all his faith in it at the same time by believing Harry to be "The One".

There really has to be an explanation to the word MUST in the prophecy: "either must die at the hand of the other." The prophecy needs to be stating a fact here, because it is "must," not "will."


Madam Pince - Aug 6, 2005 9:49 am (#374 of 601)

I agree with you Kevin, the whole prophecy thing has me really confused. I think Mrs. Brisbee has hit on it -- the use of the word "must" instead of the word "will."

"Prophecy," (at least the way I usually think of it) would seem to indicate the use of the word "will" as more appropriate. But the word "must" seems like Trelawney was handing down an edict or something.

It all feels very fuzzy to me, as if it wasn't very well thought out. But it seems to be crucial to the plot of the whole storyline, so it doesn't make sense that JKR wouldn't have thought it all through. Perhaps I'm just dense. Hopefully we'll find out in two years!


Madame Librarian - Aug 7, 2005 2:20 pm (#375 of 601)

Madam Pince, I believe that there's a quote somewhere about how carefully the prophecy was worded.

I'll try to find it. Hang on....

Oh, it's from her own website in response to a question at one of the chats:

Question--

The prophecy Harry hears in Dumbledore's office suggests to me that both he and Voldemort will have to die, is that true?

Answer--

...Both Madam Trelawney and I worded the prophecy extremely carefully and that is all I have to say on the subject!

Hope that helps.

Ciao. Barb


Madam Pince - Aug 8, 2005 11:17 am (#376 of 601)

Yep. Clears it right up.

No, no, I'm not meaning that for you, I mean JKR. I know what you were doing -- thank you for that quote, Barb; it does seem as though she thought it through! Obviously, the problem is as I feared -- I'm just dense.


kingdolohov - Aug 18, 2005 10:46 am (#377 of 601)

It seems pretty clear to me now. Both Voldemort and Harry hate the other one so much that they will always be preoccupied in getting rid of the other, meaning that one of them will end up killing the other. It's not that they would die (as I originally thought after first reading it) if they didn't kill the other, but can't live a normal life.


Mrs Brisbee - Aug 18, 2005 12:45 pm (#378 of 601)

I think plenty of people hate Voldemort, though. Is Harry so driven by revenge that he would be unsatisfied if someone else ends up killing Voldemort?


Esther Rose - Sep 1, 2005 1:18 pm (#379 of 601)

I think the prophecy pretty much says that at this point, Harry has already won the war and can end it whenever he chooses to. It just depends on whether Harry wants to live after the war or not. This is due to the word 'And'

There are three ways to read this prophecy.

You can read the and as a continuation of the previous statement so that it would read as

And (Harry) either must die at the hand of the other (Voldemort) for neither can live while the other survives.

In other words, the way to kill Voldemort is to have Voldemort kill Harry. If Voldemort kills Harry, Voldemort and Harry die.

Or you can read it as a separate thought.

And (Voldemort or Harry) either must die at the hand of the other (Harry or Voldemort) for neither can live while the other survives ...

In other words, If Voldemort kills Harry, Harry dies but Voldemort becomes immortal since the one who can vanquish him is dead. If Harry kills Voldemort, Harry can live in peace.

Or: If Voldemort kills Harry, both Harry and Voldemort die. If Harry kills Voldemort, both Harry and Voldemort die.

This left both Harry and Voldemort 1 out of 4 chances (since two of them are pretty much duplicates of each other.) that they would come out of the war alive and fulfill the prophecy. Until GOF, after GOF, Voldemort cancelled out all of his chances of coming out alive. (Glint in Dumbledore's eye) Harry may still have 1 out of 3 chances of coming out alive. (Grave news)

The prophecy is written in such a way that if Voldemort hears the entire prophecy he will believe that if he kills Harry, he will become immortal. Which at this point, is very much far from the truth, Voldemort pretty much guaranteed himself death if he kills Harry. Nearly everything that Voldemort does to revive himself is a curse to Voldemort.


Harry's blood: Wormtail was right Voldemort should have used any other wizard enemy’s blood, even Dumbledore’s. Choosing Harry’s blood means that Harry gave Voldemort his mortal life back.


Wormtail’s Hand: Wormtail still held a life debt to Harry at the time he cut off his hand to revive Voldemort.


Unicorn’s Blood: Cursed


Severed Souls: Harry has stronger soul than Voldemort and after the other 6 Horcruxes are destroyed Voldemort will be even weaker.

This means Harry has already won the war. Harry is in the war to destroy Voldemort, whether it is at the cost of his own life or not. Voldemort is in the war to gain his own immortality. There is no guarantee that Harry will survive the war but there is every guarantee that Voldemort will die at the end of the war. Harry wins.

The only way for Voldemort to live is for both Harry and Voldemort to agree not to fight each other. That is almost guaranteed not to happen so, Voldemort is toast.

The power Harry has is the power to sacrifice himself. Harry is willing to die to save the lives of the ones he loves. This is the power that Voldemort knows nothing about and even hates. Once Harry is willing to sacrifice his own life for the lives of others, the war is over. But, I am hoping that this does not mean that Harry has to die. He still has 1 in three chances of surviving.

The prophecy is meant to be ambiguous, so that it can be read in more than one way.


haymoni - Sep 2, 2005 5:32 am (#380 of 601)

Yes - it hurts my head.

The way I solve my headache is to say "either must die at the hand of The Other" so that I can use Peter as "The Other".

Then it doesn't hurt so much!


vball man - Sep 21, 2005 2:19 pm (#381 of 601)

Dumbledore changes our thinking of how prophecies work in HBP. He tells Harry:

"No, it doesn't!" said Dumbledore, sounding impatient now. Pointing at Harry with his black, withered hand, he said, "You are setting too much store by the prophecy!"

"But," spluttered Harry, "but you said the prophecy means??

"If Voldemort had never heard of the prophecy, would it have been fulfilled? Would it have meant anything? Of course not! Do you think every prophecy in the Hall of Prophecy has been fulfilled?"

I'm not so sure that Dumbledore's view of prophecy is the same as JKR's view of HP-world prophecy. How is this view of prophecy consistent with the "It will happen tonight" prophecy?

I would say that it does not explain that prophecy. Harry alone hears that prophecy. He doesn't tell anyone about it. It is fulfilled. He tells Dumbledore about it only after it is fulfilled.

Now look at Dumbledore's statement: "If Voldemort had never heard of the prophecy, would it have been fulfilled? Would it have meant anything? Of course not!" But no one did hear "It will happen tonight," yet it was fulfilled.


Choices - Sep 21, 2005 5:25 pm (#382 of 601)

vball man - You are right - there is definitely an inconsistency there. Good catch!


wynnleaf - Sep 21, 2005 6:36 pm (#383 of 601)

Esther Rose, that reminds me a little of the "Every lady in this land.." rhyme. Does everyone know that? It sounds like it means one thing, until you change the meter and punctuation marks and then it means something completely different. I'll have to go back and look again at the prophecy. Somebody mentioned recently that maybe the "other" is a 3rd person -- another person?


Mrs Brisbee - Sep 22, 2005 6:54 am (#384 of 601)

The two prophecies are a bit different, and I'm not sure I can reconcile what Dumbledore says with how they work, but....

Someone else does find out about the "it will happen tonight" prophecy before it is completely fulfilled-- Dumbledore. He learns about it the next day. Wormtail has already fled, but it is doubtful he has already found Voldemort, and it will be a full year before Voldemort's rebirthing party. So maybe it is Dumbledore who is given the chance to act on the information Trelawney is giving him.

Specifically, Dumbledore has the perfect opportunity to tell Harry about the first prophecy, but he doesn't take it.


wynnleaf - Sep 22, 2005 1:56 pm (#385 of 601)

Another point is that DD knew, even better than a 19-year-old Snape, how important that prophecy could be. He almost certainly knew that Snape was mixed up with the DEs, even if he wasn't aware of Snape actually being a DE at the time. Yet he let Snape leave with a portion of the prophecy. Why? He could have prevented the prophecy from getting to LV. Even a memory modification charm on Snape would have done it.


kage - Sep 22, 2005 11:43 pm (#386 of 601)

Why? He could have prevented the prophecy from getting to LV.

As I've said before, DD as a strategist would have been glad to find out about the means to destroy Voldemort, something he hadn't been able to do in ten years. And he would have had to let the prophecy 'play out' to become true and make that possible 'weapon' exist.


Rea - Sep 23, 2005 3:58 am (#387 of 601)

Reading "The dying of Pythia", by Durrenmatt, I found some similarities between her (Pythia's) point of view on prophecies and DD's one. I also agree with Wynnleaf: Trelawney's prophecy looks like "ibis redibis non morieris in bello", that can be read as "You'll go, you'll come back, you will not die" or as "You'll go, you'll not come back, you'll die"


Hollywand - Sep 23, 2005 6:23 pm (#388 of 601)

A question, though, about Dumbledore's skepticism about the "self-fulfilling" nature of the prophecy:

Voldemort hears part of the prophecy, and seeks to murder the children who fit the "born as the seventh month dies" condition--so here, Voldy does advance the self-fulfilling prophecy.

However, Voldemort does not intend to mark his adversary as equal. When this event happens, the prophecy takes on a life of its own---as the event depends upon Voldemort's action (the Avada Kedavra), Lily's choice (the shield sacrifice) and Harry's resiliency. In this way, Voldemort tries to circumvent the prophecy, but his actions advance a very different outcome, more so than even Dumbledore could predict.

Doesn't this event of Harry's marking and survival seem to imply that the prophecy is beyond the reach of all of the wizards----including Harry, and Dumbledore?


Choices - Sep 24, 2005 5:13 pm (#389 of 601)

I think you're on to something Hollywand - the prophesy certainly does seem to be taking on a life of it's own.


Blots - Sep 25, 2005 6:47 am (#390 of 601)

I think haymoni is on the right track (#380, also Ginerva Weasley #320, Spinowner, #355.) The prophecy is spoken. So, there is no guarantee that the punctuation properly reflects the meaning. I read the last sentence as giving the conditions under which Voldemort could be vanquished. That is why the word 'must' is used as opposed to 'will'. (Mrs. Brisbee #373.) I am also a 'Harry is a Horcrux-er'. If the second 'Other' refers to the piece of Voldemort’s soul, then it says: if that piece of Voldemort’s soul continues to exist, that is, if Harry remains a Horcrux, then, in order for Voldemort to be vanquished, both Harry and Voldemort must die. This is self evident, based on what we know about Horcruxes. If Harry kills Voldemort, a piece of Voldemort will still be bound to the earth, because the other piece still lives. So it seems that the only way that Harry could defeat Voldemort would be for both Harry and Voldemort to die together. That is one reading of the first part, 'either must die at the hand of the other.'

Except that I (and I assume so many others) love this series principally because of the extravagantly elegant and beautiful ways in which Harry participates in something miraculous that, with his courage, determination and resourcefulness, allows him to slip the noose, while doing things that are heroic and noble at the same time. If that is central to JKR’s method and meaning, why would she depart from it at the finish?

The prophecy only says both Harry and Voldemort must die, if 'the Other' survives.
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #391 to #420

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 11:53 am


kage - Sep 26, 2005 2:47 am (#391 of 601)

Hollywand Doesn't this event of Harry's marking and survival seem to imply that the prophecy is beyond the reach of all of the wizards----including Harry, and Dumbledore?

Like choices, I agree. Nobody, not even Dumbledore could tell how the prophecy would and will work out. And he certainly didn't want anybody to die in it's course, DD has done a lot to protect the Potters, maybe playing for time so he could figure things out before Voldemort started to act. Still he (DD) would want the first part (including Voldemorts action to choose/mark the boy) to come true one day, I think, as it promises a powerful 'weapon' to defeat Voldemort, something he hasn't managed yet.

I've come to fancy thinking of Harry defeating Voldemort as a fight inside Harry and that Harry is an accidental Horcrux indeed. The 'channel' between Voldemort and Harry and DD's 'but in essence divided' statement make me think, or rather feel, that. With "for neither can live while the other survives" meaning that Harry will have to overcome/defeat that bit of Voldemort's soul inside him by not killing/AK'ing - neither Severus nor Voldemort. If Harry kills it will kill Harry's loving soul and with Voldemorts bit of soul taking over, Harry will become the next Voldemort, literally.

So only the Horcruxes "must die at the hand of the other" (Harry), while the actual killing (destroying LV's body with it's last bit of soul) can be left to somebody else.

Just another two knuts, though.


Esther Rose - Sep 30, 2005 11:22 am (#392 of 601)

Interesting thought.

Cedric Diggory and Harry Potter. Two hands go on the Triwizard cup. Only one of the hands survives. Could this have fulfilled part of the prophecy?

Probably not, but what if?


So Sirius - Sep 30, 2005 10:04 pm (#393 of 601)

This makes me think of DD's withered hand. I wonder if destroying the horcruxes, destroys a part of you. If DD's hand could die, do you think Harry will slowly die off while trying to destroy each bit of LV's soul? Maybe the last bit of the prophecy "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... " means something in that regards.


haymoni - Oct 1, 2005 4:48 pm (#394 of 601)

I've been a little worried about that. Harry really doesn't know how to destroy a Horcrux.

I hope Bill can tell him.


Steve Newton - Oct 1, 2005 5:51 pm (#395 of 601)

Harry has already destroyed a horcrux. Didn't seem to be much of a problem.


wynnleaf - Oct 1, 2005 5:57 pm (#396 of 601)

Steve,

The diary wasn't protected by all the charms and other Dark Magic that the locket and, presumably, the ring horcrux were. DD said, remember, that LV wasn't particularly careful with the diary horcrux, since he had others.


haymoni - Oct 3, 2005 6:50 am (#397 of 601)

He just happened to have that fang handy.

I just wonder what he'll use on Nagini or the cup.


sstabeler - Nov 6, 2005 12:21 pm (#398 of 601)

yes, well the cup could be defeated by a spell, maybe Reductor? and Nagini, well, i hope he finds out how to remove the soul w/o having to destroy the object used, esp. if Voldemort gets his hands on the Gryffindor sword......


Pinky Prime - Nov 6, 2005 5:34 pm (#399 of 601)

I believe Harry has a piece of Voldemort’s soul and Voldemort marked him as his equal both pointing to the scar being their connection. Yet I have not read anywhere that Voldemort has anything from Harry Potter except their connection as equals.

The 'Prophesy' sought out at the Department of Mysteries was indeed the second prediction that might come true. "Neither can live while the other survives." How can either live a full life with their soul shared.

Wasn't there a third prediction by Trelawney that Harry never told DD?


Madame Librarian - Nov 6, 2005 9:02 pm (#400 of 601)

Yet I have not read anywhere that Voldemort has anything from Harry Potter except their connection as equals. (Pinky Prime)

In GoF Voldemort takes some of Harry's blood for his re-birthing process.

The scene is in chapter 32, titled "Flesh, Blood, and Bone." The actual formula is:

"Bone of the father, unknowingly given, your will renew your son...

Flesh of the servant, willingly given, you will revive your master...

Blood of the enemy, forcibly taken, you will resurrect your foe."

So, Voldemort now has some of Harry's blood circulating in his body. Quite a major bit of "sharing," methinks.

Ciao. Barb


Mudblood and Proud - Mar 19, 2007 6:41 pm (#401 of 601)

Has anyone looked into the numbers in the prophecy to see if they convey any meaning? By numbers I mean; one, thrice, seventh, one, seventh (13717)...

Which upside down almost spells Lily! (LILEI)


Madam Pince - Mar 20, 2007 3:45 pm (#402 of 601)

Good heavens, Mudblood and Proud - you are going to fit in here swimmingly! Welcome! That is one theory / scrutiny that I don't think I've seen tackled here or anywhere else -- good work!

That said, I have no brilliant ideas to add. On the phone (like she did with MAGIC for the DOM) it doesn't spell much because of all the "ones" which are blank... Hmmmm... lots to think on...

Nathan Zimmerman


Ann - Mar 21, 2007 5:53 pm (#403 of 601)

Taken together the numbers total the number nineteen. When the number nineteen is written using Arabic numerals the result is as follows (19).

Now if we take the two digits used to make up the number nineteen, one (1), and nine (9) and add them together, the sum of the parts equals ten (10). The number ten has an alchemical symbolism attached to it. This symbolism has been discussed in the Alchemy thread, and Literary Symbolism thread.


Ojman - Mar 21, 2007 9:47 pm (#404 of 601)

I haven't seen this particular idea before, so here goes: whose "hand" is the prophecy talking about? JKR writes a lot about hands. LV makes a silver hand (right hand) for PP. DD gets his right hand blasted destroying the ring Horcrux. Harry gets his right hand scarred in Detention w Dolores (OotP ch 13). The scar reads "I must not tell lies".

Perhaps Honesty (I must not tell lies) is going to play a role in Book 7's plot, somewhat like Courage and Love have played in the previous books. Perhaps it's PP's silver hand, wielded by Harry, that will finish off LV?


Choices - Mar 22, 2007 11:29 am (#405 of 601)

Ojman - ".. whose "hand" is the prophecy talking about?"

The hand of "the other"....doesn't answer anything, does it?:-(


So Sirius - Mar 22, 2007 6:47 pm (#406 of 601)

Like the rest of you, I've been giving lots of thought to the prophecy and I broke it down to what I think it may mean.

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ........ I think this may actually refer to Snape, not Harry. As Trelawney starts her trance like prophetic rant, Snape approached to listen at the door.

born to those who have thrice defied him....... This could mean Harry or Neville.

born as the seventh month dies ......... Again, Harry or Neville.

and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal........... This became Harry, because of LV and his actions, thus making the prophecy so.

but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ............ This, I assume, is the protection from Lily. Other powers would be people in his life that love him and want to support him, not just out of loyalty and fear.

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ...... this I take to mean that one must kill the other, that as long as the other lives, neither can truly have a life. It could also mean something out there, like DD or Wormtail’s hand, being the other, coming into play in some way or some potion that you have to cut off your hand to make, to lose a body, just like the potion to gain one.

Harry went from being the boy who lived, to being the chosen one. He changed to the other, after LV got his body back. He was the one who was living, opposed to what LV was doing, up until then. Now, he must see that LV is living out the prophecy by choosing him to be the one to defeat him.


mona amon - Mar 23, 2007 5:09 am (#407 of 601)

Regarding 'the hand of the other' being the hand of someone else,(that is, neither the hand of Harry nor the Dark Lord) I don't think that is possible under the wording of the prophecy.

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ......

If 'the other' is someone other than Harry or Voldemort, the first part of the sentence means that either Harry or Voldemort will die at the hand of this unknown 'other', but not both. But the second part implies that both of them cannot live as long as 'the other' survives. This is contradictory and does not make sense.

So I feel this line can only refer to Harry and the Dark Lord, and that no 'other' hand will be involved.


Anna L. Black - Mar 23, 2007 5:43 am (#408 of 601)

I don’t think it has to be contradictory - one of them will die at the hand of "the other", and then "the other" will die, and the one who lives (Harry/LV) will then be able to live his life normally.

I think it can be Pettigrew, or maybe Snape. One of them will betray LV in some way, the betrayal will cause LV to kill him, but on the way, he (PP or SS) will assist Harry in destroying LV (not necessarily with intent).

Edited to add: Pettigrew especially fits this, because of his hand. It will be very fitting if LV somehow will be destroyed because of the hand he himself gave to his "follower". Also, Voldemort was resurrected using Pettigrew's hand - it's possible that it weakened him in some way (just like Harry's Blood. And, he used his Muggle father's bone - it's probably the weakest combination there could be, for him).


mona amon - Mar 23, 2007 7:03 pm (#409 of 601)

Hmm...quite a good explanation Anna, but what about the word 'for'? Does it not mean 'because' out here?

either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ......

It could mean, A must die at the hand of B or B must die at the hand of A because A cannot live while B survives, and B cannot live while A survives.

In other words, one of them must kill the other to ensure his own survival.

But if a third person is involved, it becomes

A must die at the hand of C or B must die at the hand of C because neither A nor B can live while C survives.

For me, it is this 'because' that complicates matters in the second scenario. Does the first part follow because of the second? In the first case it would, because only two people are involved.

Anyway ,my ideas are still a bit confused. Got to think about it further.

I agree that Pettigrew would fit, because, as you say, his hand can be considered as LV's hand, and that would fit in with the first scenario.


Laura W - Mar 23, 2007 11:30 pm (#410 of 601)

mona amon wrote:

"... but what about the word 'for'? Does it not mean 'because' out here?

"either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ......

"It could mean, A must die at the hand of B or B must die at the hand of A because A cannot live while B survives, and B cannot live while A survives.

"In other words, one of them must kill the other to ensure his own survival."

That is exactly *my* interpretation, including what the word "for" means: that is, "because". (But it's highly possible that I've been missing something in this.)

Laura


Choices - Mar 24, 2007 11:06 am (#411 of 601)

I think it is highly possible that we are all missing something in this. I confess that I am Confunded. JKR is so very clever and she herself admitted that the prophecy was "carefully" worded. To me, that means it was made as vague as possible so that we could not come to a firm conclusion as to what exactly it means. The prophecy is a confusing mystery to me - I haven't a clue as to how to interpret it, but I hope it will become clear in book 7.


wynnleaf - Mar 24, 2007 1:07 pm (#412 of 601)

mona amon,

I too have been interested in that view of the prophecy (the A, B, and C interpretation).

Another possibility is the "7th month" part. Born as the seventh month dies doesn't necessarily have to mean July. It could also mean a child born premature at the end of the 7th month. Or the calendar year used to be different, so it could mean another month entirely (can't recall how the old calendar used to work). Personally, I like the premature birth idea. JKR could use it to fit practically anyone.

JKR did say that she and Sybil were very careful with the wording of the prophecy. So maybe that very careful wording is meant to appear to convey one set of meanings, while really conveying another.


mona amon - Mar 25, 2007 6:29 pm (#413 of 601)

Hi Laura, Choices, Wynnleaf.

Even JKR's comment about the wording of the prophecy can have different interpretations. Was she trying to make it ambiguous like the prophecies in Macbeth, or was she trying to make it as clear and straightforward as possible?

Maybe the 'dodgy' part of it is already over, now that Voldemort has chosen Harry and marked him?


wynnleaf - Mar 25, 2007 6:37 pm (#414 of 601)

Was she trying to make it ambiguous like the prophecies in Macbeth, or was she trying to make it as clear and straightforward as possible? (mona amon)

I think if JKR was truly trying to make it as clear and straightforward as possible she'd have done so and people wouldn't be wondering about what the prophecy meant and who was the "other," or what the seventh month was, or what "approaches" referred to, etc.

For instance, she could have said that the one who had the power to defeat the Dark Lord was "about to be born," and would be born at the "end of July." She could have said, "the Dark Lord must kill the one who will be born in July, or the one to be born in July must kill the Dark Lord." Doesn't sound as cool, but I'm just trying to demonstrate that it was possible for her to have been far more clear than she was.


anna fiore - Mar 26, 2007 5:28 am (#415 of 601)

I read all the messages in the thread to be sure none already would have said the same thing. Someone said something similar, but none exposed exactly my theory, in message 154-155 there something like it, and in 412 wynnleaf said one of my explanation:

Snape is the chosen one. Am I crazy? Sure, I am.

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches. Snape approached the seer.

born to those who have thrice defied him his mother was the captain of Hogwarts Gobstone team, she was even near-classmate of Tom M. Riddle (the half-blood prince potion book was 50 year old), she could have defied LV in a Gobstone match. His father could have defied LV when he was at the orphanage

born as the seventh month dies I know he was born on 9th January 1960 (I love him) but he could be a seven-month child: born when the seventh month of pregnancy ends

and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal others, in the thread, have thought black mark was 'the mark' and the reply was black mark signs a person like a LV servant ... But LV sent Snape to Dumbledore to obtain the DADA teaching position former required by LV himself. 'will mark' is in the future. Could Snape be marked after the prophecy? Yes, Prophecy: June or July 1980- Potters Murders:31st October 1981. It is a very long time! perhaps, Snape wasn't a DE in June or July 1980 and he became a DE time after.

but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not we can suppose power is love. Could Snape be full of love? I think yes. all of you remember I really love him and I know him very well. Further he really has a 'power the Dark Lord knows not'. He is able to close his mind to LV.

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives in the end of book4 LV have had his body, but he really survives, with the fear Harry is his fate. Does Harry simply survive? In book5 he hooked up with Cho, in book6 with Ginny ... I call it 'to live' not 'to survive'. if you consider Snape indeed ... he hasn't friends, he hasn't family, he hates his job ... I call it 'to survive' not 'to live'.

the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies why does JKR repeat this line? Can we forgot the meaning '31st July? the answer to the2∞ question is no: 31st July is JKR birthday. and if in this line 'as the seventh month dies' would mean 31st July. We could read it this way: before 31st July (1980? 1981? 1997?) something will happen and will make Snape 'the chosen one'. (the black mark? other things?)

wynnleaf said everyone could be a seventh month child but Severus comes from Lucius Septimius Severus and Septem in ancient Latin is seven. you know JKR takes care about names.

yes, yes ... I know: the books are "Harry Potter and the ... something". Do all of you know 'the 3 musketeers' by Dumas? 'the 3 musketeers' are Athos, Porthos and Aramis, the book talks about D'artagnan, the fourth musketeer.

I wish replies, I need replies. i think about this theory by a lot of time. I hope someone destroys my theory because of Snape is in danger if I'm right.


spinowner - Mar 26, 2007 8:44 am (#416 of 601)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the last part of the prophecy stated that the person in question "WILL BE born as the seventh month dies", which pretty clearly implies that that person had not yet been born at the time the prophecy was made.


Choices - Mar 26, 2007 10:56 am (#417 of 601)

Anna - "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches. Snape approached the seer."

Snape wasn't approaching the door to listen to the prophecy, he was already at the door as he heard only the first part of the prophecy.

Anna - "...born to those who have thrice defied him his mother was the captain of Hogwarts Gobstone team"

I seriously doubt the prophecy was referring to Eileen beating Tom Riddle at Gobstones three times. Snape's father was a Muggle, but there is no indication he was ever at the Muggle orphanage where Tom Riddle lived as a child.

Sorry, but I can't see any indications that Snape is the chosen one. I'm afraid it's Harry, all the way.


wynnleaf - Mar 26, 2007 12:00 pm (#418 of 601)

anna fiore,

While I'm happy that you appreciated a number of my comments and posts, I don't actually think that the entire prophecy would apply to Snape. In a stretch.... yes, it's possible more or less along the lines you outline. JKR could tell us some things about Snape's parents in Book 7 that would somehow make them fit. But that seems unlikely.

What may be more likely is that if the prophecy isn't speaking only about Harry and Voldemort, then it is speaking of three people -- Harry, Voldemort and some "other."

Sybil's other prophecy is not really clear and doesn't actually come to occur in exactly the way the prophecy is stated.

Notice this prophecy:

“The Dark Lord lies alone and friendless, abandoned by his followers. His servant has been chained these twelve years. Tonight, before midnight, the servant will break free and set out to rejoin his master. The Dark Lord will rise again with his servant’s aid, greater and more terrible than ever before. Tonight ... before midnight ... the servant ... will set out ... to rejoin ... his master ...?

She says that the person referred to (we assume Pettigrew) has "been chained." But in fact, Pettigrew was not in chains or even caged. He had a great deal of freedom as Scabbers and was staying with the Weasleys of his own volition. If we were to have heard the prophecy a book prior to POA, we would be guessing at someone in prison, not anyone -- even in Animagus form -- who is simply living peaceably with a family.


TheSaint - Mar 26, 2007 1:03 pm (#419 of 601)

wynnleaf - Another possibility is the "7th month" part. Born as the seventh month dies doesn't necessarily have to mean July.

You mean like SEPTember?


wynnleaf - Mar 26, 2007 1:21 pm (#420 of 601)

wynnleaf - Another possibility is the "7th month" part. Born as the seventh month dies doesn't necessarily have to mean July.

You mean like SEPTember? (TheSaint)

Yes, something like that. Weren't there only 10 months once upon a long time ago? I really don't know the history of the calendar, but I know it hasn't always been as it is now.
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #421 to #450

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:07 pm


Choices - Mar 26, 2007 5:06 pm (#421 of 601)

But Sybill gave the prophesy in modern times - there have been 12 months in the calendar year for a long time. Just my opinion, but I think she means the end of July and I think she means Harry.


wynnleaf - Mar 26, 2007 7:07 pm (#422 of 601)

But Sybill gave the prophesy in modern times - there have been 12 months in the calendar year for a long time. Just my opinion, but I think she means the end of July and I think she means Harry. (Choices)

Well, it certainly could mean Harry and probably means Harry. But JKR could also have been even more clear and made it definitely July, rather than probably July. So there's room for doubt.

As I said, Sybil also said in prophecy that the person we assume to be Pettigrew had been in chains -- and that was definitely not the case.


TheSaint - Mar 26, 2007 9:38 pm (#423 of 601)

Thought I was on to something last night...

Seventh sign of the zodiac...Leo. In constellation zodiac the last day is September 17th. My husband was in high hopes it applied to Hermione (He and Kloves could be partners) but alas, she was born two days later! LOL


Laura W - Mar 27, 2007 12:51 am (#424 of 601)

"The Dark Lord lies alone and friendless, abandoned by his followers. His servant has been chained these twelve years. Tonight, before midnight, the servant will break free and set out to rejoin his master."

"She says that the person referred to (we assume Pettigrew) has "been chained." But in fact, Pettigrew was not in chains or even caged." (wynnleaf)

"Been chained" (i.e. - imprisoned, bound up, severely restricted) in the unnatural - for a human being - body of a rat. Unable to live as a free human wizard. Forced to live how his young masters, Percy and Ron, tell him to; forced to go where they permit him to and only there; allowed only to eat the foods they give him (mostly rodent food, probably), etc. Unable to carry on his life as a man, going where he will, consorting with whomever he wishes, doing magic, etc. "Will break free" to take on his real natural physical form as a man.

Laura


wynnleaf - Mar 27, 2007 1:04 am (#425 of 601)

Pettigrew could have left the Weasleys at any time. He was not "forced" to do as any of the Weasleys said for 12 years.

Yes, I agree that "chained" can mean many things. In retrospect we can see that. My point is that it clearly did not mean what one would have expected it meant prior to finding out it was Pettigrew. Similarly "seventh month," "other," and the rest of the second prophecy may not follow the obvious interpretation.


Laura W - Mar 27, 2007 1:27 am (#426 of 601)

I totally disagree that Peter could have left the Weasleys and gone back to being the man Peter Pettigrew.

It was well known in the WW that on Nov. 1, 1981 Sirius Black killed Pettigrew on the streets of London, along with 12 Muggles. (I'm sure it was reported in detail in the Daily Prophet, since Black's breakout 12 years later was. Even Stan Shunpike knew all about it. Chapter The Knight Bus, PoA) It was well known throughout the whole British WW that Pettigrew died facing down the murderer Black and that the only things left of him were bloody robes and a finger. Everybody knew that his parents were sent his finger and his Order of Merlin, First Class. In the Three Broomsticks conversation in PoA, Fudge says that the Ministry made a big deal of that.

Leave his prison - chains - of a rat body? Where would he go? He couldn't risk having anybody see him in his real form, with everybody thinking he was dead. He may not have had to stay with the Weasleys, but he sure was chained to that body -- until the Dark Lord came back at least.

Even LV confirms this in GoF, chapter one, "Wormtail, Wormtail. ... awkward questions would have been asked if she had gone back to the Ministry with the news that she had met you on her holidays. Wizards who are supposed to be dead would do well not to run into Ministry of Magic witches at wayside inns ...". Or to run into anybody, for that matter.

And Sirius says, in PoA, chapter 19, "You haven't been hiding from me for twelve years. You've been hiding from Voldemort's old supporters. ... If they ever got wind that you were still alive, Peter - ". Or if anybody did, for that matter.

Could have left the Weasleys at any time? Only if he wanted to live like a wild rat instead of like a tame rat. (And as long as he was owned by Percy and Ron, he had to do what they told him and live as they would have him live.) Either way, he was definitely "chained" in that unnatural body and unnatural lifestyle - for a human being/wizard - for "these twelve years": just as Sybill said. And he *did* "break free" to once again become Peter Pettigrew, human wizard, and "set out to rejoin his master"; just as Sybill said.


wynnleaf - Mar 27, 2007 2:31 am (#427 of 601)

I totally disagree that Peter could have left the Weasleys and gone back to being the man Peter Pettigrew. (Laura)

When did I say he could have gone back to being Pettigrew??

I said he could have left the Weasleys at any time.

Could have left the Weasleys at any time? Only if he wanted to live like a wild rat instead of like a tame rat. (Laura)

You are implying that the Weasleys were his only possibility for a home to live in? No one else would have a pet rat? That's not even true in the Muggle world, much less the WW.

I agreed that you could use that interpretation of the word "chained." But I pointed out that it is not the usual or most obvious interpretation that a person would give the prophecy prior to discovering it was about Pettigrew. In a similar manner, Sybil's second prophecy may not come true according to the most obvious interpretation.

What exactly are you arguing? That prior to having discovered the prophecy was about Pettigrew it should have been obvious that "chained" was about an Animagus rat living as pet in a family? The whole question here is whether or not Sybil's second prophecy should or must be taken according to its first and more supposedly obvious interpretation, or whether we already have a precedent for interpreting her prophecies according to a less obvious interpretation.


Steve Newton - Mar 27, 2007 3:15 am (#428 of 601)

When Peter was at the Weasley's he had access to, at least, Ron's wand during summers. (This was posted early in the COS-2007 read-a-long.) It does not seem that you need a wand to Apparate or transform. I think that Peter had the opportunity to jaunt over the summer since a rat missing for a few hours would not arouse suspicion. This doesn't mean that there is evidence that he did but he did have the opportunity.


wynnleaf - Mar 27, 2007 4:57 am (#429 of 601)

But the object of Sybil's second prophecy was not fulfilling it in a manner that one would initially expect based on the prophecy. Peter may have felt constrained to stay in his rat form. He may have felt constrained to stay with the Weasleys (have no idea why he couldn't have looked for another family to live with if they didn't suit). But whatever he was, he was not "chained" in the first or most obvious definition of the word. Therefore Sybil's second prophecy is only true if you do not take a literal interpretation -- or the more obvious interpretation -- of her prophecy.

Because of that, it would make sense if her first prophecy didn't follow a literal or the most obvious interpretation either.


haymoni - Mar 27, 2007 5:14 am (#430 of 601)

I think he was chained because he couldn't go forward or back.

He couldn't be dead, because he wasn't dead.

He couldn't live, because everyone thought he was dead.

His only refuge was Voldy.

Unless, of course, he was willing to come clean, admit what he did and pay for it with time in Azkaban.

But he is a rat, so he didn't.


Choices - Mar 27, 2007 10:58 am (#431 of 601)

I won't repeat it all, I will just say I totally agree with Laura and Haymoni. Peter was chained - not literally, but definitely figuratively. I like the "severely restricted" definition. I have often said, "I am stuck here at home", but I'm not literally glued down, but I am unable to go out. I think Sybill used "chained" in the same way.


wynnleaf - Mar 27, 2007 11:13 am (#432 of 601)

In other words, Choices, you're saying that Sybil's prophecy used the word "chained" in a non-literal way -- not the first definition of "chained," and not the usual or most obvious definition, right?

If so, that's a sort of precedent for considering that her other prophecy may also have used words which may not mean their literal, first definition meanings, but a less obvious meaning, right?

This is all I'm trying to get at. I can't quite understand so many people saying over and over that Pettigrew being an Animagus for 12 years can count as a figurative version of "chained," as though anyone has disagreed with that. Yes, it can. But it is certainly not literally chained and therefore it uses a non-literal, less than obvious meaning of the word in the prophecy.

Am I completely missing something? What are you guys trying to say is important about Pettigrew's being "chained?" I brought the whole thing up to point out that one prophecy can't be interpreted literally, and therefore perhaps we shouldn't insist on a literal interpretation of the first one. Do you guys disagree? And if so, what are you trying to say about the prophecy about Pettigrew?

Surely no one is trying to say that Pettigrew was literally chained? So what are you guys trying to assert, as regards how the Pettigrew prophecy is interpreted?


Choices - Mar 27, 2007 11:37 am (#433 of 601)

I think what is being said is that just because "chained" is not meant literally, as in the preferred definition of the word, does not make the prophesy void. How that affects the first prophesy, I don't know. I find the first prophecy very confusing and difficult to pin down a precise meaning. We know it was very carefully worded to prevent us from fully understanding it's meaning. JKR is the one who decides which meaning of a word she chooses to use and I'm sure she does it on purpose to keep us a bit off track.


I Am Used Vlad - Mar 27, 2007 12:22 pm (#434 of 601)

anna fiore, I love your idea about the Prophecy being about Snape. I just read HBP and this passage about him jumped out at me:

"Yeah, that fits," said Harry. "He'd play up the pure-blood side so he could get in with Lucius Malfoy and the rest of them...He's just like Voldemort. Pure-blood mother, Muggle father...ashamed of his parentage, trying to make himself feared using the Dark Arts, gave himself an impressive new name-Lord Voldemort-the Half-Blood Prince- how could Dumbledore have missed-? HBP p.637

JKR, through Harry, is showing us how equal Snape is to Voldemort. Also, I'm pretty sure we don't know when Snape got the Dark Mark. It easily could have been at the end of July as a reward for hearing the Prophecy, and since Voldemort demands such fierce devotion from his followers that becoming a Death Eater could be considered akin to a religious conversion, one who does so could be thought of as being re-born, or born again.

Great idea.


Mrs Brisbee - Mar 27, 2007 7:21 pm (#435 of 601)

The idea that the Prophecy could be about someone who is literally "approaching" is clever, but it fits Aberforth much better than Snape. Snape was already there listening in. It was Aberforth (presumably) who was approaching the door. Snape wasn't born as the seventh month died. But who knows, maybe old Aberforth was. And Mama and Papa Dumbledore could have defied Little Voldemort way back when: "Gimme the sweets!" "No." "Gimme!" "No" "I want candy NOW!" "You’re not getting any, Tom, and that's final."

But I think I'll stick with Harry as "The One". Although Aberforth Dumbledore and the Deathly Hallows does roll off the tongue.


Laura W - Mar 28, 2007 12:30 am (#436 of 601)

"But I think I'll stick with Harry as "The One". Although Aberforth Dumbledore and the Deathly Hallows does roll off the tongue."

Thanks for the smile, Mrs. Brisbee. That title does sound good; especially spoken aloud. And thanks for picking up on what I was getting at, Choices.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just because none of us - including me, for sure - know the precise meaning and nuance of the wording and interpretation of every word and comma of the main prophecy, that doesn't mean all of it is in code. In The Lost Prophecy chapter of OotP, Harry does ask some direct questions and Dumbledore does give some direct answers. (Only those Jo is permitting us to know, of course. What she wants us to know. )

1) Firstly, Harry asks right out what the prophecy he just heard from the Pensieve means. And DD says, "It meant that the person who has the only chance of conquering Lord Voldemort for good was born at the end of July, nearly sixteen years ago. This boy would be born to parents who had already defied Voldemort three times."

So, the seventh month is July. And the baby was born in 1980. And his parents defied LV three times. Facts.

2) Then Harry asks straight out if that meant him. And DD answers, "...Sybill's prophecy could have applied to two wizard boys, both born at the end of July that year. ... One, of course was you. The other was Neville Longbottom."

DD has stated categorically that only two babies were in the running. Only two fulfilled the prophecy's criteria of being born the end of July and of having parents who had thrice defied LV. Unless there was another baby wizard who fulfilled those conditions who DD has forgotten about or doesn't know about - which I highly doubt -, in the whole WW only Harry and Neville would have been on Tom's hit list.

3) Then Harry says - hopefully? - that he might not be The Chosen One. Like, maybe it was really Neville. And the next line is, " I am afraid,' said Dumbledore slowly, looking as though every word cost him a great effort, 'that there is no doubt that it is you.' " and went on to explain that that was sealed when Voldemort himself marked Harry as his equal. "He chose the boy he thought most likely to be a danger to him."

No waffling here. Harry is the chosen one, the only one who could vanquish Lord Voldemort.

4) And finally, Harry asks for clarification about the end of the prophecy. He says, painfully, "... so does that mean that ... that one of us has got to kill the other one ... in the end?" And DD answers him straight on, "Yes."

I see Jo speaking through Dumbledore during this whole conversation. Giving us and young Harry just enough facts - but facts they be - about Trelawney's prophecy to take us to the next book (HBP). What she wants us to know re this, she comes out and tells us; what she doesn't want us to know, she doesn't bother having Harry ask about or Dumbledore answering. And it is those parts of the prophecy that we can and do speculate on.

Now, if the counter argument to what I presented above is that Dumbledore is not telling the truth in what he says during that conversation in his office at the end of OotP or that he has gotten it wrong, ... well, there is no answer to that on my part but to say that I do not agree. Not at this point in the series, anyway.

Laura


Luna Logic - Mar 28, 2007 1:22 am (#437 of 601)

Laura, I think the only point about which Dumbledore could eventually not tell the truth is the point which has "cost him a great effort"

As you quoted: " I am afraid,' said Dumbledore slowly, looking as though every word cost him a great effort, 'that there is no doubt that it is you.' "

The other simple explanation being that he loves Harry very much, and suffers for Harry to be charged with such a fate, thus, saying these words does cost him a great effort.


wynnleaf - Mar 28, 2007 4:14 am (#438 of 601)

If Dumbledore should always be considered right, and never makes mistakes, then we have no reason to question whether his interpretation of the prophecy is correct.


Choices - Mar 28, 2007 9:40 am (#439 of 601)

Excellent post, Laura. You have spelled it out very precisely - I agree. Well done!


Laura W - Mar 28, 2007 11:39 pm (#440 of 601)

wynnleaf ... Dumbledore certainly does make mistakes. He has admitted as such.(Some think he made a giant mistake in trusting Snape; although I don't.) *All* human beings make mistakes and, since he is greater than most, his mistakes are also greater. The relevant question HERE is whether he was correct in the very specific answers he gave Harry re the prophecy. Whether Jo was giving us some important information - while withholding other information - in having DD say what he did, as he did. I believe the answer to that is "yes", based on the detailed canon and analysis of same in my last post. Others are, of course, free to think otherwise.

Choices ... thank you. (blush) As DD said to Draco in HBP, "We all like appreciation for our hard work." (heh, heh)

Laura


mona amon - Mar 30, 2007 8:02 am (#441 of 601)

There is an interesting example of ambiguous wording in COS.

Dobby visits Harry in Privet drive and warns him that there is a plot to make terrible things happen at Hogwarts. So Harry asks him

"Hang on- this hasn't got anything to do with Vol- sorry- with You Know Who, has it?...

"Not- not He Who Must Not Be Named, sir.'

But Dobby's eyes were wide and he seemed to be giving Harry a hint.(COS, Chapter 2)

And then, after Harry battles the memory of the teenage Voldemort,

"I've just got one question, Dobby,...You told me all this had nothing to do with He Who Must Not Be Named, remember? Well-"

"It was a clue, sir,' said Dobby, his eyes widening, as though it was obvious. "Dobby was giving you a clue. The Dark Lord, before he changed his name, could be freely named, you see?"

"Right,’ said Harry weakly....(COS, Chapter 18)

But I have a feeling we wont be seeing any such twists with the prophecy under discussion, though there might be some small surprises.

If the prophecy stated that the Dark Lord was going to vanquish Harry or something like that, then I'd be looking for loopholes.

But the way the prophecy is worded, Harry does have a sporting chance. It even hints that he has an advantage, the power the Dark Lord knows not.

That being the case, I'm quite willing to accept it at face value, until proved otherwise.


anna fiore - Apr 1, 2007 11:51 pm (#442 of 601)

Hi, everyone,

Sorry for my delay but I have a life (a job, a family) and I was busy.

spinowner "WILL BE born as the seventh month dies", which pretty clearly implies that that person had not yet been born at the time the prophecy was made.

Anna: if the meaning is figurative: something will be happen to Snape, before 31st July, and it will make Snape the 'one'.

To Choice: my theory is very improbable but not impossible.

To wynnleaf: yes in ancient Roman calendar there were 10 months and September was the seventh (Emperor Augustus added January and February).but there is no reason to refer the prophecy to the more ancient roman calendar. Your theory (part to Harry, part to Snape) is very pretty. It would mean Harry and Snape would become allies

To Choice: We Muggles now have a lot of calendar, in Europe and America we use Gregorian calendar, Muslims have calendar based on the moon, there is even a Chinese calendar and so on

To Laura W. and Luna Logic: Dumbledore said on and on he didn’t understand Sybill's subject, he never studied it, he despised it and so on. He was a great wizard and a very great man but if he ever made a mistake it would be in understanding the prophecy. He said the truth but he made a mistake.

I am used Vlad: that becoming a Death Eater could be considered akin to a religious conversion, one who does so could be thought of as being re-born, or born again.

Anna: you explained it much better than me, many thanks.

To Mrs Brisbee: I don’t know if the rest of prophecy fits well to Aberforth and I wrote about 'the 3 musketeers', Harry could not be the one.

JKR said on fate (FAQ sec.-her site)

Do you believe in fate? No, I believe in hard work and luck, and that the first often leads to the second.

Perhaps I’m wrong (it is very probable), but I think there is a mistake in the current interpretation of prophecy


Mudblood and Proud - Apr 6, 2007 12:26 pm (#443 of 601)

Dumbledore says (OotP, The Lost Prophecy) that Voldemort selected the half blood (Harry) and not the pure blood (Neville) as he felt the half blood was more threatening. This to me implies that he never intended to go after Neville. This to me is the biggest contradiction of LV's personality. In my opinion he would have killed both and merely decided, for reasons unknown, to kill Harry first. I am sure he intended to pay the Longbottoms a visit right after leaving Godric’s Hollow.


haymoni - Apr 6, 2007 1:56 pm (#444 of 601)

But I think he went after Harry first because he was a half-blood.


Mudblood and Proud - Apr 7, 2007 9:36 am (#445 of 601)

Haymoni yes that may be the case but in the particular chapter in OotP and in other books it always sounds like LV only intended to kill Harry and that he did not intend, or even conceive of harming Neville in anyway. Of course he did not get the opportunity to but the language used in the books gives no indication that he was going kill 2 people that particular day.


Laura W - Apr 7, 2007 10:51 am (#446 of 601)

We really do not know if he would have gone after Neville, but I agree with you based on Dumbledore's wording, Mudblood and Proud.

DD says, "He chose the boy he thought most likely to be a danger to him. And notice this, Harry: he chose, not the pureblood ... but the half-blood, like himself. He saw himself in you before he had ever seen you ..."

This is significantly different from DD saying something like, "He chose to kill you first." It indicates, to me, that Dumbledore was saying that LV knew there were two babies who fit the criteria and he had to decide which one the prophecy was referring to. He decided that the one was Harry, the half-blood (although I don't see Harry that way, but whatever) who was most like Tom himself. In other words, by being a pureblood, Neville was considered less of a threat in LV's eyes. (I still cannot figure out that reasoning, by the way.) That is what I hear Dumbledore saying.

On the other hand, maybe it *was* in LV's mind kill both boys. I just think, as M&P wrote, that the canon wording we have indicates otherwise.

Laura


haymoni - Apr 7, 2007 11:35 am (#447 of 601)

I'm guessing that if he had not become Vapormort, he would have then gone on to eliminate Neville.

As it stands, he didn't need to - it was obvious that he had chosen correctly - that Potter brat WOULD have killed him if he, the most powerful and most-insufferable-know-it-all of all, hadn't first taken the proper steps towards immortality.

So even though he became Vapormort, he could be smug about it - he had chosen wisely.


Laura W - Apr 7, 2007 12:35 pm (#448 of 601)

But what do think of the conversation in the Three Broomsticks in the chapter The Marauder's Map of PoA, haymoni?

Fudge says that one of Dumbledore's spies tipped DD off that You-Know-Who was after the Potters; that DD alerted James and Lily to this and advised them to use the Fidelius Charm. Then McGonagall says that they used Black as their Secret-Keeper even though DD offered to take on that job himself. He knew there was a spy on the "good side" informing LV of the Potters' movements, which is why he wanted them to use only him (DD) as their Secret-Keeper. (All of this is on pages 152-153 of the Raincoast edition)

Now, this sounds to me at least as if LV had targeted the Potter child and only him. That, when he heard the prophecy, he made the decision that it referred to this baby only. And that DD knew this.

We do not hear in the conversation I reported in my second paragraph - or anywhere else in the books - that Dumbledore had spies who told him that the Dark Lord was after both the Potters and the Longbottoms, nor that DD alerted both James/Lily and Frank/Alice to this fact and advised both couples to employ the Fidelius Charm, nor that he offered to be the Secret Keeper for both couples.

This is why I am pretty sure that Dumbledore - and Jo - is telling us that LV heard the prophecy and made the decision that the one he had to kill, or be killed by, was only the baby Harry Potter. If DD had even the slightest fear that the much-loved and admired Longbottoms and their child were at risk, I'm 112 per cent positive that he would have afforded them the same priority and protections that he offered to the Potters. But there is no canon to suggest he did.

(Note - the 112 per cent reference is what Hermione got on her Charms exam in PS, just in case somebody forgot. Hee, hee.)

Laura


haymoni - Apr 7, 2007 12:57 pm (#449 of 601)

But there is no canon to suggest that he didn't either.

We just don't know.

I've often wondered if the Longbottoms were tortured, not just because they were Aurors, but because Bella knew that Voldy was headed to their house after the Potters.


wynnleaf - Apr 9, 2007 11:56 am (#450 of 601)

I do find it hard to believe that Voldemort would have left the Longbottoms alone if he had successfully killed off Harry. LV certainly does appear to have specifically chosen Harry. But he really seems to have no qualms at killing anyone, so why would he leave anything to chance once he'd gotten rid of Harry?

Therefore, I think that Neville would have been a secondary target only after disposing of Harry.
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #451 to #480

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:09 pm


MickeyCee3948 - Apr 9, 2007 1:44 pm (#451 of 601)

I agree with you completely, wynnleaf. Neville wouldn't have been around for very long. It was also easier going after Harry as his little rat gave him their whereabouts.

Mickey


Choices - Apr 9, 2007 4:50 pm (#452 of 601)

I agree - Voldemort would be very likely to want to "cover all bases" and eliminate both threats to his desired domination of the wizarding world. He is in no way averse to killing - what would taking one more life be to him?


Laura W - Apr 10, 2007 12:38 am (#453 of 601)

I still genuinely believe that the canon I quoted and referred to in my last two posts (446 and 448) tells us that LV had two boys to choose from and chose the one he felt was a greater risk to him. As in, had he succeeded in killing Harry, he would feel safe. But a lot of you obviously don't buy my argument or perhaps think that Dumbledore was incorrect in how he assessed the situation. Ok.

I take you now to JKR's Official Site, Section FAQ:

"What is the significance of Neville being the other boy to whom the prophecy might have referred?"

"To recap: Neville was born on the 30th of July, the day before Harry, so he too was born 'as the seventh month dies'. His parents, who were both famous Aurors, had 'thrice defied' Voldemort, just as Lily and James had. Voldemort was therefore presented with the choice of two baby boys to whom the prophecy might apply. However, he did not entirely realise what the implications of attacking them might be, because he had not heard the entire prophecy. As Dumbledore says:

"'He [the eavesdropper] only heard the beginning, the part foretelling the birth of a boy in July to parents who had thrice defied Voldemort. Consequently, he could not warn his master that to attack you would be to risk transferring power to you.'

"In effect, the prophecy gave Voldemort the choice of two candidates for his possible nemesis. In choosing which boy to murder, he was also (without realising it) choosing which boy to anoint as the Chosen One? to give him tools no other wizard possessed? the scar and the ability it conferred, a magical window into Voldemort's mind.

"So what would have happened if Voldemort had decided that the pure-blood, not the half-blood, was the bigger threat? What would have happened if he had attacked Neville instead? Harry wonders this during the course of 'Half-Blood Prince' and concludes, rightly, that the answer hinges on whether or not one of Neville's parents would have been able, or prepared, to die for their son in the way that Lily died for Harry. If they hadn't, Neville would have been killed outright. Had Frank or Alice thrown themselves in front of Neville, however, the killing curse would have rebounded just as it did in Harry's case, and Neville would have been the one who survived with the lightning scar. What would this have meant? Would a Neville bearing the lightning scar have been as successful at evading Voldemort as Harry has been? Would Neville have had the qualities that have enabled Harry to remain strong and sane throughout all of his many ordeals? Although Dumbledore does not say as much, he does not believe so: he believes Voldemort did indeed choose the boy most likely to be able to topple him, for Harry's survival has not depended wholly or even mainly upon his scar."

Again, this says *to me* that Lord Voldemort did not have any intention of killing the second baby because he was so certain that he had picked right the first time. To us, with our normal human doubts about ourselves, it would have made more sense for LV to cover his bases by targeting both babies from the onset, but nothing in canon shows *me* that he was planning do this; and canon, plus the above quote shows *me* he didn't intend to.

As I said before, had LV this in mind, Dumbledore's spy in the Dark Lord's camp would have told DD so and he would have had BOTH couples go into hiding and each appoint a Secret-Keeper. There is no way DD would not have known LV's plans, and at no time does he say anything to Harry or anyone else about Voldemort planning to take out both boys - just to be on the safe side.

With his limitless ego, in Tom's mind the person referred to in the prophecy - the part Snape told him, at least - was the half-blood Harry Potter, and only him, and getting rid of the baby would solve all Tom's problems.

Laura


haymoni - Apr 10, 2007 3:20 am (#454 of 601)

As he was turned to Vapormort, he knew he had been right.

We'll never know if he also meant to go after Neville, because he didn't need to.

He chose to go after Harry for whatever reason, but the obsessive, compulsive part of him makes me think that he would have moved on to Neville, just to be on the safe side, had he not become a gas.


wynnleaf - Apr 10, 2007 5:35 am (#455 of 601)

But a lot of you obviously don't buy my argument or perhaps think that Dumbledore was incorrect in how he assessed the situation. (Laura)

Um, I don't think the two are necessarily the same thing. That is, I don't think DD's assessment is necessarily the same thing as your argument.

Take a look again at a phrase in JKR's website comment:

"In effect, the prophecy gave Voldemort the choice of two candidates for his possible nemesis. In choosing which boy to murder, he was also (without realising it) choosing which boy to anoint as the Chosen One..."

JKR said that LV didn't realize that his choice to go after Harry would "anoint" Harry as the Chosen One. As far as LV was concerned (to use DD's words), Harry was the "the boy he thought most likely to be a danger to him." LV chose the one he thought "most likely" not the one he "knew for certain..." In other words, LV's choice was an educated guess. LV didn't have a certain knowledge that Harry was The One, nor did he know that in choosing to attack Harry, he would make Harry into The Chosen One. So if LV had killed Harry, he would likely have also attacked Neville, because he wouldn't have known that Harry had definitely become the Chosen One by virtue of LV's selecting him, nor was his decision to select Harry based on certain knowledge, but instead one of probability -- what was "most likely."


Choices - Apr 10, 2007 9:31 am (#456 of 601)

Voldemort may very well have chosen Harry to kill and stopped at that. I just think he would have had no problem with killing Neville also, and may have gone on to do so, as insurance, had he not been "killed" at Godric's Hollow.


Laura W - Apr 10, 2007 5:32 pm (#457 of 601)
Edited Apr 10, 2007 7:26 pm

"Um, I don't think the two are necessarily the same thing. That is, I don't think DD's assessment is necessarily the same thing as your argument." (wynnleaf)

Well, I do.

Had Dumbledore thought that LV was going to go after both babies, he would have warned Frank and Alice as he did James and Lily, and he would have advised Frank and Alice to have a Secret-Keeper as he did James and Lily, and he would have offered to be their Secret-Keeper as he offered to be the Potter's. McGonagall and Fudge knew all about DD finding out from his spy about LV going after the Potters (and they only say he knew about the Potters), and about what DD did to protect them (and only them). He did not.

I reference that conversation in the Three Broomsticks in PoA. What happened previous to and on Oct. 31, 1981 is discussed in great detail by all. Yet, there is no mention of DD doing anything for the Longbottoms. I repeat, he would have done the same for the Longbottoms had he thought they were in danger. Thus, I do believe Dumbledore's assessment of the situation (i.e. - that LV made his choice and that choice was only Harry) and my arguments - based on the Three Broomsticks conversation and what DD tells Harry directly about LV having the choice of two boys and making the choice of Harry Potter - are the same. Because my arguments are based on what DD did and said and, more importantly, what he did not do (i.e. - feel the need to protect the Longbottoms) and did not say (i.e. - that LV was planning to take out both children). I read all of this to be Dumbledore saying to Harry, "He chose you INSTEAD OF Neville, Harry."

But I see that I stand completely alone on this. That's ok. (Big Smile)

Laura


Soul Search - Apr 10, 2007 7:01 pm (#458 of 601)

Laura W, you make a good argument.

I, and I think others, assume that Voldemort would take out any number of baby boys if he thought any one of him could have been a threat. It is his nature to go after both boys.

Dumbledore says Voldemort made the choice to go after Harry. As I see it, Wormtail made the choice by telling Voldemort the secret. There is also that strange bit with Bellatrix, et al going after the Longbottoms.

You make such a good argument, however, that I am now Confunded.

We got the prophecy, the two boys concept, and Dumbledore's statement that Voldemort choose Harry, the half-blood, all at the same time in OotP. Discussion was rampant about Neville and his possible role as the hero. JKR squashed that idea with the FAQ you cited.

Why did JKR throw in the two possible boys for the prophecy concept? What does it add to the storyline?


Laura W - Apr 10, 2007 7:27 pm (#459 of 601)
Edited Apr 10, 2007 9:04 pm

Soul Search, if I may answer the two questions in your last paragraph by going back to JKR’s official site, FAQ. She writes,

"Some of you, who have been convinced that the prophecy marked Neville, in some mystical fashion, for a fate intertwined with Harry's, may find this answer rather dull. Yet I was making what I felt was a significant point about Harry and Voldemort, and about prophecies themselves, in showing Neville as the also-ran. If neither boy was 'pre-ordained' before Voldemort's attack to become his possible vanquisher, then the prophecy (like the one the witches make to Macbeth, if anyone has read the play of the same name) becomes the catalyst for a situation that would never have occurred if it had not been made. Harry is propelled into a terrifying position he might never have sought, while Neville remains the tantalising 'might-have-been'. Destiny is a name often given in retrospect to choices that had dramatic consequences."

Neville's role is that of the "tantalising 'might-have-been'."

On top of that, the terrible life Harry has led and the terribleness that still awaits him is made all the more tragic with us having the knowledge that it could have turned out totally different for the lad had Voldemort chosen Neville INSTEAD of Harry. There was a choice. And, because of the choice made, Harry Potter had to grow up with relatives who hate and abuse him, to be ridiculed and shunned at school, to have those he loves and who love him die, and to be nearly killed over and over again. Because of the choice Voldemort made. And, without the inclusion of the Neville Longbottom character, we would just say, "Well, only one little boy fit the criteria so, of course, LV tried to kill that one (Harry). It was inevitable that things should unfold as they have over the six (seven?) books." The fact that Harry's whole life could have been normal and safe and loving had LV made the other of his possible two choices and seen the Longbottom child as being THE THREAT to him instead of him seeing the Potter child as being the one the prophecy was talking about makes this all the more heartbreaking, from a literary point of view. (It's almost Shakespearean.)

I really do think this is what Jo had in mind in giving Voldemort two choices and having him make one choice over the other. I really do.

In HBP, on the train back to Hogwarts, Harry thinks to himself that if LV had chosen Neville INSTEAD of him, he would be "a scarless Harry who would have been kissed goodbye by his own mother, not Ron's." Every time I read that, I feel a little pain. Exactly, I'd say, what Jo was aiming for.

HBP, p.133 (Raincoast), Harry thinking: "The prophecy could have referred to either of them, yet, for his own inscrutable reasons, Voldemort had chosen to believe that Harry was the one meant."

Laura


mona amon - Apr 11, 2007 3:58 am (#460 of 601)

Good post, Laura!


wynnleaf - Apr 11, 2007 5:58 am (#461 of 601)

You know, I really think it hardly matters.

Rather obviously, JKR was always going to have LV choose Harry and Harry was going to live and LV initially be destroyed, so there wouldn't be any chance for LV to kill Neville.

I think a lot of JKR's quotes regarding Neville are primarily to put down any speculation that somehow Neville is still caught up in the prophecy and somehow connected to Harry. She wants to make it clear that he's not. Fine.

But she also created a character in Voldemort that clearly has no compunction about killing people for little or no reason -- maybe even just because they are "the spare." Further, she clearly said that LV had no idea that in choosing Harry he was making him "the One." And then she had DD rather clearly state that LV chose Harry because he was the most likely, not because LV knew anything for certain.

In other words, JKR may say that LV would never choose Neville. Well, of course he wouldn't because she wasn't going to let him choose Neville or involve Neville in any way after the initial choice. But that doesn't mean that JKR wrote -- in the plot -- either a character whose personality wouldn't kill Neville, or a plot set-up of the prophecy where LV wouldn't have any reason to kill Neville.

Both JKR's written plot -- in the series -- as well as the personality she created in LV, set up a plot and character in which the Evil Villain would kill the second kid if only for good measure.

In other words, based on all the back-story we now know, if one was to take the story at the moment LV attacked the Potters and re-write it to where Harry dies, then there is nothing in the plot, any plot points, or the character of LV that would lead us to believe he wouldn't go kill Neville as well, just for good measure. The only things that argue against it is 1. JKR said he wouldn't -- but provided no plot point or aspect of LV's character that would keep him from doing it and 2. Dumbledore's retrospective idea that LV wouldn't, but of course DD can't possibly really know what LV would definitely do or not do.

And Dumbledore saying otherwise is no proof of anything other than that JKR didn't have it in her plans (obviously -- we knew that anyhow). JKR didn't create in Dumbledore or the plot a situation where Dumbledore knew exactly what was going on in Voldemort's mind. He only makes his best guess about what LV would do or wouldn't do.

This reminds me of JKR's comments about life debts. DD says Snape had a life debt to James and Peter has one toward Harry, because their lives were saved. But then JKR comes along and says that Ginny doesn't owe a life debt to Harry because he didn't directly save her life. As though telling Lupin and Sirius to not kill Peter is someone more life-saving than fighting a basilisk and destroying the Riddle horcrux and saving Ginny that way. What appears to really be going on is that JKR simply doesn't want Ginny to owe a life-debt to Harry, since it makes the romantic aspect a little messy -- so she just says Ginny doesn't owe one. Period. But really, within the "world" she's created, the plot, and the characters she's outlined, there's no reason why Ginny shouldn't owe a debt to Harry, the same way Peter does.

I think this is similar. JKR sets up characters and plots, and it seems obvious that LV would be the sort of character who would have killed Neville just for good measure -- especially when he didn't know his choice of Harry would cement Harry as The One, and when he only chose Harry in the first place as the "most likely" not as a for certain choice. Yet then, because JKR doesn't want speculation that Neville is still involved, she says that Neville is completely out of it. Well, of course he is in the sense that JKR wasn't going to let LV try to kill him, any more than LV would ever have killed Harry as a baby.

But that doesn't mean that it doesn't make perfect plot and character sense for LV to have killed Neville if he'd first killed Harry.


mona amon - Apr 11, 2007 9:21 am (#462 of 601)

Wynnleaf, I think it does matter, because it tells us a lot about Voldemort. Does he go on an indiscriminate baby-killing rampage like King Herod as soon as he hears the Prophecy? No. JKR has him look around, and choose only one child, the child that he thinks is a danger to him.

It shows the confidence he has in his own judgment, as well as the quirkiness of his choice in rejecting the pure- blood. And what's more, he was right. "Harry's survival has not depended wholly or even mainly upon his scar."(JKR)

it seems obvious that LV would be the sort of character who would have killed Neville just for good measure

I think that by having him choose only one child to eliminate and not even bother about the other, this is precisely what JKR is telling us that LV isn't. Not that he is humane enough to kill only when necessary, but, as I mentioned before, that he has such supreme (and not entirely misplaced) confidence in himself.


haymoni - Apr 11, 2007 9:28 am (#463 of 601)

I think there is a big difference between killing 2 possible candidates and wiping out all the first borns in town.

Bottom line, he chose to go after Harry first and he chose correctly.

I firmly believe that he would have gone after Neville if Harry had simply died.

I will agree to disagree on this point.


wynnleaf - Apr 11, 2007 10:36 am (#464 of 601)

Yes, I'll have to agree to disagree. I simply don't think Voldemort -- no matter how confident he is -- would just have left the second child alive when Voldemort is so casual about killing.

There was never any question about whether Voldemort would have killed children left and right, a la King Herod. Just whether or not he would have killed the second child. So the comparison doesn't much work.

Yes, regardless what JKR may say in interviews, I think she wrote a character who kills casually, who didn't know for certain that Harry was the Chosen One, and would therefore have every reason to kill the second child as well.


Laura W - Apr 11, 2007 11:37 am (#465 of 601)
Edited Apr 11, 2007 1:25 pm

Why are you all avoiding the issue of Dumbledore not putting the same protections on the Longbottoms that he put on the Potters if he thought there was the slightest chance Voldemort would go after both babies? And why do we not hear that Dumbledore's spy alerted him to the fact that Voldemort was planning to take out both? Why are we told that the spy only told DD that V was going after the Potters?

I have made these points several times and nobody has addressed them.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

This is not about whether Lord Voldemort is capable of killing all kinds of innocent people. We know he is. This is about whether - through canon evidence - he believed both boys born at the end of July to be a threat to him (i.e. - the one named in the prophecy). And I contend that Dumbledore, at least, was convinced LV made his choice and that, had he killed his choice, LV would have felt safe. This is not a King Herod situation at all. King Herod did not know which was the right baby. Tom Riddle - in his extreme egotism - believes he does know. He had his spy (Peter) passing information to him for a year, as Sirius tells us in PoA. LV did not have Peter spying on the Longbottoms as well. It was Harry Potter he was after.

If LV had planned on going after both families, DD's spy would have known (he knew about the Potters) and would have told DD; and DD would have done for the Longbottoms what he did for the Potters; and since both Fudge and McGonagall knew what DD had done for the Potters they would have known that he did that for the Longbottoms and it would have been part of the Three Broomsticks conversation; and DD ( Jo) would have said something to Harry about LV planning to kill both children instead of saying "He chose the boy he thought most likely to be a danger to him" and "He chose you, not Neville" and "Voldemort could only have tried to kill you because he knew you to be the one to whom Sybill was referring" (HBP, p.742), all of which Dumbledore did say to Harry, and ...

I'm getting tired. I did my best. You guys carry on.

Laura


rambkowalczyk - Apr 11, 2007 12:56 pm (#466 of 601)

Why are you all avoiding the issue of Dumbledore not putting the same protections on the Longbottoms that he put on the Potters if he thought there was the slightest chance Voldemort would go after both babies? And why do we not hear that Dumbledore's spy alerted him to the fact that Voldemort was planning to take out both? Why are we told that the spy only told DD that V was going after the Potters?

We have no proof that Dumbledore did not put the same protections on Neville. I don't think it's fair to quote from POA and then say this is proof that Voldemort didn't choose Neville. I think in book 3 JKR wanted the readers kept in the dark about Neville's part in the prophecy.


wynnleaf - Apr 11, 2007 1:48 pm (#467 of 601)

Why are you all avoiding the issue of Dumbledore not putting the same protections on the Longbottoms that he put on the Potters if he thought there was the slightest chance Voldemort would go after both babies? (Laura)

As ramb said, there's no proof there were no protections on Neville.

But far more importantly, you're assuming that whatever DD said and did is basically the final word on whether or not LV would have attacked Neville.

And I contend that Dumbledore, at least, was convinced LV made his choice and that, had he killed his choice, LV would have felt safe. (Laura)

Does Dumbledore being convinced make it so?

Laura, do you think DD actually knows all of LV's thoughts and plans? Are you saying that DD had some sort of secret knowledge of how LV thought? Yes, DD is wise and is probably fairly accurate about a lot of what LV might do and not do.

But...

Did he figure out that LV had a working plan to spirit Harry out the Tri Wizard Tournament? No. Did he think Voldemort would get Harry into the MOM in OotP? Well, apparently not. He knew LV was trying, but didn't seem to think it would work or he'd have done more to prevent it, like tell Harry to watch out for LV trying to lure him there. Did he think that Voldemort was hanging out inside Hogwarts in the back of Quirrell's head? Apparently not.

Dumbledore doesn't know everything about what LV would do and not do. He may have thought LV would stick with only choosing Harry, but that doesn't make it true.


Laura W - Apr 11, 2007 2:42 pm (#468 of 601)

In my post 465, I wrote: "and DD ( Jo) would have said something to Harry about LV planning to kill both children instead of saying "He chose the boy he thought most likely to be a danger to him" and "He chose you, not Neville" and "Voldemort could only have tried to kill you because he knew you to be the one to whom Sybill was referring" (HBP, p.742), all of which Dumbledore did say to Harry, and ..."

I only repeat that to make one correction. That should be OotP, p.742, (not HBP) in case anybody is looking it up. (Sorry) Please note that I did not repeat the above as a response to anything written in answer to my posts. I just wanted to cite the right book that I got these quotes from.


mona amon - Apr 11, 2007 6:40 pm (#469 of 601)

This is not a King Herod situation at all. King Herod did not know which was the right baby. Tom Riddle - in his extreme egotism - believes he does know. (Laura)

Actually, if you read my post again, you'll see that I was also trying to say something like that. Anyway, I wish I'd left King Herod out of it. I put him in solely for (attempted) literary effect.

and a lot of people seem to have misinterpreted the remark.

Agree to disagree? Good idea, Haymoni and Wynnleaf!


Tenshender - Apr 11, 2007 11:06 pm (#470 of 601)

I haven't read the entire thread so forgive me if I stumble over some theory already thoroughly squashed into the ground by the posters.

I read an earlier post a while ago speculating that Snape was the object of the prophecy instead of Harry. Although it was a great theory, I don't have the time to sift through the 400+ posts to find its author. Sorry Razz. The original post concerned the last four lines of the prophecy, stating that they referred to the rebirth of Snape, marked as Voldy's equal with the Dark mark for giving info, etc. This is a valid theory, and applying it to the final line of the prophecy made for an interesting interpretation.(big words yay!)

"and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... "

I had previously thought this meant that either Voldy or Harry had to die for the other to live. Further thought, and the funny faces that accompany thinking hard, led me to believe the "either" is both Harry and Neville. That would make the "other" Voldy. The reinterpreted prophecy reads:

and either (Harry or Neville) must die at the hand of the other (Voldy) for neither (Harry nor Neville) can live while the other (Voldy) survives ...

Since JKR has insisted that Neville is not relevant to the prophecy anymore, because of Voldy choosing Harry, in both interviews and through DD(though she could be misleading us there, DD isn't always right) it seemed unlikely to me. But if you replace Neville with Snape....get my drift?

I think one of these three must be the one to die, either Harry as the ultimate sacrifice, good vs. evil, blah blah blah, a climactic but IMO boring end to the story(this would be DD's interpretation of the prophecy, either Harry or Voldy must die); or Neville could die, a fit and courageous end to a great character(my first interpretation of the prophecy after reading OotP); OR, all that redemption stuff Jo has been hinting at comes full circle, Snape redeems himself, and dies to save....the world? ...the universe? ...oh whatever..... I'm partial to Snape dying, it would complete the series and technically fit into the prophecy, a Sixth Sense twist if there ever was one. Sorry for the LOOOOOOOOOOOONG post.

P.S. HELP! HELP! I'M BEING REPRESSED!


vega ome - Apr 15, 2007 2:34 pm (#471 of 601)

Howdy All,

I'm trying to catch up on many threads and may do some regurgitating (sorry in advance). This may sound wild but here goes.

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... (someone is coming to remove LV from power or kill?) born to those who have thrice defied him, (the parents have defied him three times/ what if LV and us readers do not know that they defied him three times until book 7? I'm thinking Malfoys) born as the seventh month dies ... (Born towards the end of July/when was Draco born?) and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal, (could LV find out that the Malfoys had in fact defied him three times and kill them making Draco an orphan, like LV himself and Draco will be marked with hate and the Dark Mark too) but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... Draco will develop the ability to love after the death of his parents and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... Snape kills LV to save Draco, Harry gets to be just Harry and with no scar (it disappears after LV is killed)

I believe the prophecy is very ambiguous and gives JKR much room to maneuver, as it should. After reading book 6, I just get a feeling that Draco and Snape will have something to do with the prophecy.


Choices - Apr 15, 2007 3:37 pm (#472 of 601)

And you mean that all this time we should have been thinking "Draco Malfoy and the SS/PS", "Draco Malfoy and the COS", "Draco Malfoy and the POA", etc.? Hmmmmm, I don't think so. Sorry.


vega ome - Apr 15, 2007 4:23 pm (#473 of 601)

Howdy Choices,

I'm just stirring things up. Lots of interesting views here, some really good, some not. I admit that Draco is not.

I just hope the main characters get to live.

v/r

Mike


Choices - Apr 16, 2007 11:16 am (#474 of 601)

Vega - "I just hope the main characters get to live."

On that, we agree!:-)


spinowner - Apr 17, 2007 5:45 am (#475 of 601)

A Google search reveals that Draco Malfoy's birth date is June 5, 1980. That appears to contraindicate his being the Chosen One, which is unfortunate because I think the idea of him being the one to vanquish LV is great. I do think Snape will convince him to join the right side in DH.


vega ome - Apr 17, 2007 5:56 pm (#476 of 601)

Howdy spinowner,

I feel she will put a twist or three in this last book for sure. I also would like to see Draco cross over to the good side.

I don’t have the intellect to decipher this prophecy I admit. I sure do enjoy reading everyone's posts. Thank you everyone.

v/r

Mike


Luna Logic - Apr 23, 2007 11:49 pm (#477 of 601)
Edited by Apr 24, 2007 1:01 am

Answering to Laura post 459:

I agree with your demonstration , Laura, and I think that JKR (Dumbledore!) did not bother to put a protection about Neville.

Perhaps JKR was founding her reasoning on her vision of Voldemort character. It is a great risk to found a strategy only of the "knowledge" of somebody character, but this it is exactly what Dumbledore has done all the time (IMO).

I disagree about your post 459 on another topic: Neville and Harry's fates, if Voldemort had made the other choice.

Laura W.: In HBP, on the train back to Hogwarts, Harry thinks to himself that if LV had chosen Neville INSTEAD of him, he would be "a scarless Harry who would have been kissed goodbye by his own mother, not Ron's." Every time I read that, I feel a little pain. Exactly, I'd say, what Jo was aiming for.

Yes Harry could think that; But it is my guess that, in this other reality, the Lestrange would have made their attack exactly the same way, but to the Potters house this time. Then, Harry would be in the same situation as Neville is, with both parents at St Mungo’s. Because the Potter couple and the Longbottom couple had the same role in the war, both had defied Voldemort three times, and the Lestrange knew it (I presume!).


Laura W - Apr 24, 2007 12:55 am (#478 of 601)

This is true, Luna, except for one thing. In GoF - which I am currently rereading again -, in the Pensieve scene, Crouch Sr. accuses the four prisoners (including his son) of "capturing an Auror - Frank Longbottom - and subjecting him to the Cruciatus curse, believing him to have knowledge of the present whereabouts of your exiled master," and of "using the Cruciatus curse on Frank Longbottom's wife, when he would not give you information."

It *is* interesting that, when Harry was picturing what his life would be like had LV chosen to go after Neville INSTEAD OF after Harry in the HBP quote I cited (which you repeated above), it did not occur to Harry that Neville would have the scar - and the threat of death hanging over him - and Harry would have two parents in St. Mungo's. Smart of you to think of it.

Perhaps, however, Jo did not have Harry think that - or introduce that thought to her readers - because she was telling us that the reason the DEs specifically thought Frank Longbottom would have a clue where LV was, was because he was an Auror and might have come across some clues to this in his investigations. If the Longbottoms had been killed and if neither of the Potters were Aurors, perhaps they (the Potters) would not have been tortured because the DEs would have no reason to think they could give (or have) any info on the whereabouts of the Dark Lord - any more than any other non-Auror witch or wizard could.

Of course, we do not know if one or both of the Potter adults were Aurors, do we? We don't know what they did (beyond defy Voldemort three times). Jo has been deliberately saving that for her final book.

laura


mona amon - Apr 24, 2007 3:33 am (#479 of 601)

Luna, that is an interesting thought, but I'm inclined to agree with Laura. I don't think Harry would have been in the same situation as Neville.

As Dumbledore tells Harry in POA, "The consequences of our actions are so complicated, so diverse, that predicting the future is a very difficult business indeed..."

So I feel that if Voldemort had gone after Neville instead of Harry, it would have resulted in a completely different fate for the parties concerned, not just a switching of fates.


Luna Logic - Apr 24, 2007 3:37 am (#480 of 601)

Mona Amon and Laura, I agree with you both, but I wanted also to put into some light the fact that Neville's fate is not a happy fate.
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #481 to #510

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:11 pm


Laura W - Apr 24, 2007 4:12 am (#481 of 601)

On that we are in complete agreement! Two apparently wonderful parents who have not been there for their child since he was maybe a baby or an infant. Having to visit these parents and see them in their out-of-mind condition one's whole life. Being raised by a grandmother who provides the necessities, but never fails to mention how disappointed she is in you; how you do not measure up (first to your father, and then to Harry Potter). No, Neville's fate is very far from happy. Prophecy or no prophecy.

LW


mona amon - Apr 24, 2007 4:19 am (#482 of 601)
Edited Apr 24, 2007 6:05 am

Very true, Luna, I never really looked at it from that perspective. But Harry realises this, when he thinks (on the train in HBP) about how Neville's childhood has been blighted by Voldemort just as much as his own...

(Edited)


me and my shadow 813 - Apr 27, 2007 2:46 pm (#483 of 601)

Regarding a discussion a while back about "the hand of the other", I really love the idea that "other" refers to Peter, who will die fulfilling his life-debt to Harry during a battle with Vold. I haven't worked it all out in my head yet --how the Harry's love will come into play in Vold's downfall-- but it could simply refer to Harry's compassion in allowing Peter to live, then plays a crucial role in killing Vold. Regarding the imprecise use of "for" in the prophecy for this interpretation, riddles are often not worded with exact dictionary definitions. If anyone's read The Dark Tower series, there are several riddles posed which contain words very loosely interpreted.


haymoni - Apr 27, 2007 5:21 pm (#484 of 601)

I really hope "the other" refers to Peter also. Jo's comment about wording the Prophecy carefully makes me think there has to be something to it. Especially with Dumbledore's comment that Harry may one day be glad he spared Peter.


Choices - Apr 27, 2007 5:42 pm (#485 of 601)

I think the idea of Peter being "the other" is interesting, but there are problems with this.

"...and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives."

This seems to say that "the other" (Peter?) is going to have to kill either Voldemort or Harry, and that neither Harry nor Voldemort can live while "the other" (Peter?) survives. Does this mean that Harry and Voldemort are going to have to kill Peter in order to live? Confusing, to say the least.

We know that Harry alone can kill Voldemort - he is marked as the one who will vanquish the Dark Lord. And since Peter owes a life debt to Harry, I doubt that he will kill Harry. So, where does that leave us? I think it means that the prophesy refers solely to Harry and Voldemort - there is no "other" - just Harry and Voldemort.


frogface - Apr 28, 2007 3:32 am (#486 of 601)

I think that Peter is still crucial. I always read the part in PoA when Dumbledore tells Harry that he may one day be glad that he saved Peter's life as if it was underlined in red ink and then highlighted! Its going to be important and DH is the only place left for it to make its appearance.

But I don't think that Peter appears in the Prophecy. Like Choices says, with the wording it doesn't quite make sense.


me and my shadow 813 - Apr 28, 2007 3:31 pm (#487 of 601)

Does this mean that Harry and Voldemort are going to have to kill Peter in order to live? Confusing, to say the least. - Choices

Unfortunately, I've noticed a lot of riddles are confusing until the solution is presented.

"neither can live while the other survives" to me could very well be that Peter must die in order for Harry to vanquish Vold, thus survive. It could be Peter would also have to die in order for Vold to kill Harry. The riddle could be telling us Peter has to die in this story, *for* he is the one responsible for Vold finding the Potters and manifesting a random prophecy into reality.


mona amon - Apr 30, 2007 2:36 am (#488 of 601)

Me and my, then what about the 'either must die at the hand of the other' part? That would mean one of them (Harry or Voldemort) has to die at the hand of Peter, and Peter also has to die, and even then I feel the grammar isn't right, though I cannot pinpoint exactly what is wrong.


me and my shadow 813 - Apr 30, 2007 11:28 am (#489 of 601)

Yes, I think it might very well be that Peter is the one who will physically kill Vold. There is nothing in the prophecy that says Harry must physically kill Vold, but that he has the power the Dark Lord doesn't. It could be Harry not allowing Sirius and Lupin to kill Peter was the love and mercy (and life debt), which in turn creates the scenario for Peter to have to sacrifice himself in killing Vold in order to save Harry (life debt fulfilled). It makes sense to me, although of course it is one of numerous potential interpretations!


Hawthorne - May 1, 2007 11:38 am (#490 of 601)

Snape also owes Harry a life-debt, twice over. James saved his life from Lupin. And Snape is the reason James and Lily are dead. I think that’s why DD trusts him. Rowling refers to Wormtail when she described the life-debt, but I think she was letting us know about it because of Snape.

So I think at the climax of Deathly Hallows, Harry will walk into some sort of trap, (baited perhaps with Ron or Ginny). Voldemort will close the trap. He is about to finish it, when Snape will throw himself between Harry and LV and sacrifice his life to save Harry (exactly like Lily did). And this sacrifice will somehow rebound again on LV, causing him to die once and for all. This way, LV will die because of Harry, but Harry will not be the one to kill him.

The prophesy says "either must die at the hand of the other." It does not say 'either must die BY the hand of the other.' In my dictionary, 'at the hand of' means 'through the action of'. So, because Harry finishes the destruction of the horcruxes, Voldemort will die, but he’ll die by his own actions and Harry will not have to live with the 'murderer' label in his own mind.

I just know it will be something tricky but infinitely logical like this.


Steve Newton - May 1, 2007 12:51 pm (#491 of 601)

I don't see either of these things giving Snape a life debt to Harry. James saving his life might give him a debt to James, hard to say. I haven't read anything in the books suggesting that causing someone’s death gives you a debt to anyone, not even the dead.


spinowner - May 2, 2007 2:14 pm (#492 of 601)
Edited May 2, 2007 3:46 pm

It just occurred to me that the first "other" in the prophecy would not have to be the same person as the second "other". In that case it could be as follows: ...either (Harry or LV) must die at the hand of the other (Wormtail, Neville, whomever) for neither (Harry or LV) can live while the other (Harry or LV) survives. A bit of a reach to be sure, but possible.


me and my shadow 813 - May 2, 2007 4:10 pm (#493 of 601)

I agree with Steve. It was pointed out by DD that Peter "owes" a life debt to Harry, whereas this was not pointed out regarding Severus and Harry. Yes, it might be "leftover" from James during school but I don't think that's how it works magically. I think Severus has James's death hanging over his head just as much as his regret about Lily-- but I feel it is more Severus's choice to help Harry in the name of what happened to James and Lily rather than the magical bonds of Life Debt.

I like what Hawthorne said about the "at" phrasing rather than "by". Very subtle but important difference. Thanks for pointing that out.


MickeyCee3948 - May 2, 2007 4:55 pm (#494 of 601)

As to the life debt that is owed to Harry by Peter. Why should we believe that it matters at all to Peter? He was a traitor and betrayed two of his best friends to Tom. He was responsible for another of his best friends being sent to wizard prison for 12 years. He is a sniffling little rat(literally) and as far as I see it will do anything to survive. Feel like he owes Harry anything. Not in this lifetime. JM2K's though.

Mickey


me and my shadow 813 - May 3, 2007 10:13 am (#495 of 601)

Mickey, I agree Peter might not *feel* obliged to save Harry in a crisis, but we don't know how a Life Debt works magically. DD told Harry it will be useful to have Peter indebted to him. Surely DD is aware of Peter's lack of integrity. This says to me that, magically, Peter is bonded to help Harry whether he likes it or not.


MickeyCee3948 - May 3, 2007 3:27 pm (#496 of 601)

Peter's concept of help may be far different than Harry's view of help. I just can't see Peter helping Harry in any way that will significantly help Harry. Peter is sure to be sticking as close to Tom as possible now that Dumbledore is gone and Snape will be even closer after being the one who killed DD.

Mickey


me and my shadow 813 - May 4, 2007 12:47 pm (#497 of 601)

Yes, but just as Winky was able to override Barty Jr.'s will and "bond" him to her, it is possible Peter's *will* will be overridden by the bond. Or, as with the case of Gollum and Frodo, the Dark ended up working for the Light in the end.

We know nothing about the magic of Life Debt. There are various levels of magic, such as the Elf magic, or horcrux spells, Fidelius Charms, Unbreakable Vows, etc., that we do not have sufficient evidence with which to make assumptions. I feel Life Debt will fall into this category. Oh well, just have to wait.


frogface - May 12, 2007 5:08 am (#498 of 601)

I feel like the life debt Peter owes Harry will be repaid. Otherwise JKR wouldn't have had Dumbledore mention it.


Madame Pomfrey - May 13, 2007 6:46 pm (#499 of 601)

I agree with Frogface. Wormtail has already suggested Voldemort use someone else for the rebirthing and I noticed he avoided eye contact and conversation when tying him up. I really think we will see this debt paid.


Anna L. Black - May 20, 2007 10:40 am (#500 of 601)

I don't know if it means anything with regards to Peter being the "other", but I wanted to mention that Trelawney's second prophecy was about Peter. Just wanted to throw that into the mix


Madame Pomfrey - May 20, 2007 11:37 am (#501 of 601)

Good catch, Anna! What I want to know is how Voldemort will interpret the last part of the prophecy. I do think he will hear it. What will hearing the entire prophecy add to the storyline except how Voldemort interprets it.

Ooh... What if "power the Dark Lord knows not" and "neither can live while the other survives" refers to the final horcrux-The one I think is embedded in Harry's scar?


vega ome - May 21, 2007 7:06 pm (#502 of 601)

Dang Poppy,

I'm determined that his scar cannot be a Horcrux and you come up with this.

Ooh... What if "power the Dark Lord knows not" and "neither can live while the other survives" refers to the final horcrux-The one I think is embedded in Harry's scar?

I think you just nailed an important part of the prophecy. Congratulations to you. You really got me thinking now.

v/r

Mike


Madame Pomfrey - May 22, 2007 3:10 pm (#503 of 601)

Thanks, Mike! I'm not sure I'm sold on it, but it looked good at the time.


me and my shadow 813 - May 23, 2007 4:48 pm (#504 of 601)

Madame Pomfrey, that's basically how I feel, too. I haven't been able to articulate exactly how it will work though. Earlier on this thread (or a similar Prophecy thread) I suggested since Harry and Vold contain a part of each other, Harry might merge or absorb the soul fragment into himself rather than having to "destroy the horcrux" which is him! After all, we've been told a horcrux with a mind of its own is a dangerous thing for Vold. To me, Harry can decide the fate of that soul fragment, even if it means loving it, accepting it, and ultimately having it become an integrated part of himself. This would be an important theme in the 'grey areas between black & white of pure evil or pure good', as well as the transformational power of Love. I know JKR said on her website *No, Harry and Vold will not merge*, but I think it's possible we'll see a variation of this concept with the scar/horcrux theory.


Madame Pomfrey - May 24, 2007 5:40 am (#505 of 601)

I like that, actually. After destroying the other 3 horcruxes Harry would have the only one left, aside from the one residing in Voldemort. Since Voldemort used Harry's blood could Voldemort then feel Harry's emotions the way Harry has felt his? Would the feeling of acceptance and Love destroy Voldemort, meaning Harry's love and acceptance of the soul fragment? Also, is this the reason Dumbledore had that gleam of triumph?


me and my shadow 813 - May 24, 2007 3:24 pm (#506 of 601)

Certainly possible, Madame. We saw how Vold reacted at the MoM when he was inside of Harry and Harry had a surge of love towards Sirius. Like the thoughts and emotions needed for *Expecto Patronum*, once Vold's soul consists of just himself and the fragment left within the scar --and Harry envelopes the fragment in thoughts/emotions of all the people, places and things he loves-- Vold might not survive. Gives a new twist to the phrase "Love Conquers All".

Regarding Triumphant Gleam, I'm sure it has something to do with Vold shooting himself in the foot by using Harry's blood for "protection". So far we have no canon of Vold getting "ill" from Harry's emotions due to the blood. The only time was during MoM possession. But, we don't know exactly why Vold began using Occlumency against Harry, if it was for other reasons besides Harry seeing into Vold's thoughts and plans. And, once all the other horcruxes are destroyed, and it's just Vold and the scar left of Vold's soul, I agree it might be too much for him to bear. Hope that makes sense.


Vox Gerbilis - May 28, 2007 9:37 am (#507 of 601)

Shadow, I don't know if you've seen my post on the Predictions for Book 7 thread, but my theory is that the horcrux in the scar was actually destroyed during the MoM possession. The text says that the scar "burst open," and I'm interpreting that literally, meaning that the soul fragment was discharged.


TheSaint - May 28, 2007 10:09 am (#508 of 601)

Vox - The text says that the scar "burst open," and I'm interpreting that literally, meaning that the soul fragment was discharged.

If that is true...the what the heck was the point? Possessed by a soul no one knew about...why bother? Why employ Occlumency against Harry now if the piece no longer exists? Or is Dumbledore dead wrong again?


Vox Gerbilis - May 28, 2007 3:06 pm (#509 of 601)

Throughout OotP, Harry experiences LV's mental and emotional processes through the scar. DD decides that he should learn Occlumency to prevent LV from using this to his advantage. Harry fails to learn Occlumency, and LV is able to get into his mind to trick him to come to the DoM. This leads to LV's momentary possession of Harry, in which the scar "bursts open." In HBP, Harry's scar no longer forms a link to LV's mind. DD infers that LV is using Occlumency against Harry.

My interpretation: Harry's scar works as a portal to LV's mind because it is a horcrux. Unbeknownst to anyone, that horcrux was destroyed during LV's possession attempt. Hence, it no longer forms a link. In DH, I predict that Harry will destroy three horcruxes and begin his attempt to find and destroy the fourth. At some dramatic moment, he will discover that he was the fourth horcrux, but it is already gone. (I vaguely envision LV bodily dying at Harry's hand and boasting that he won't really die because there's still one horcrux to sustain him, only to realize that this horcrux is already gone.)


me and my shadow 813 - May 29, 2007 9:21 am (#510 of 601)

Vox, your last paragraph above is intriguing. I like it (with my own exception that Vold will not die at Harry's hand).
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #511 to #540

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:13 pm


wingardio leviosa - Jun 12, 2007 5:34 am (#511 of 601)

I posted this somewhere else- before realizing this is the proper thread.

I quote Harry remembering the scene in GH that night (PA, chap. 9):

"Not Harry, not Harry, please not Harry!" "Stand aside, you silly girl... stand aside, now..." "Not Harry, please no, take me, kill me instead-"

"Not Harry! Please...have mercy...have mercy..."

and again (PA, chap. 12)

"Not Harry! Not Harry! Please - I'll do anything -" "Stand aside. Stand aside, girl!"

It seems rather obvious what's in these lines. We know it is of the greatest importance too.

But what's Lily doing exactly?

I realized only now that she is "thrice defying" LV... she refuses to stand aside and let him kill Harry, resisting duress (and possibly Imperius)

Like when you search for a clover and don't see the sequoia in front.

We may have to interpret differently the "thrice defied" part. In fact, the prophecy - in its ambiguity - is not explicit about time sequence (as e.g. first the triple-challenge then the birth) and in prophecies what is not explicitly said is as important as what is said. As a first glimpse, it seems that LV was not trying to spare Lily's life but was just giving her the occasion to challenge him three times, so fulfilling the prophecy ...

What do you think?


TwinklingBlueEyes - Jun 12, 2007 6:59 am (#512 of 601)

And when was James supposed to have "thrice defied"? And how would the wizarding world know that they "thrice defied"?


wingardio leviosa - Jun 12, 2007 8:03 am (#513 of 601)

About James we do not know. Neither we know about the Longbottoms. Nor is it clear if each parent must challenge LV 3 times or three times count for the pair.

The wizarding world is unconcerned with this prophecy, they don't even know it.

I only point out that probably we have been "witnesses" to one of the triple challenges. [through Harry's deep memory and JKR's pen, guess it would not hold in court...]


Mrs Brisbee - Jun 12, 2007 8:16 am (#514 of 601)

Wingardio Leviosa, I think your idea is clever, and I could see Voldemort trying to make sure everything fit the Prophecy perfectly before trying to kill Harry, but didn't Dumbledore say that there were two boys who fit the Prophecy by dint of their birthdates and their parents having defied Voldemort three times? It seems both requirements were already met before Voldemort went to Godric’s Hollow. I'll try to find a quote later.


So Sirius - Jun 12, 2007 8:29 am (#515 of 601)

I agree, that Harry is the chosen one, but, I don't think the prophecy is that simplistic. It's quite possible it encompasses different people. The one approaching could be Snape. When she changes course and uses "and" that refers to Harry. I think, like with the prophecy itself, it's about choice. It could have been Harry or Neville, but LV chooses Harry and makes him his equal, by his actions. This prophecy works the same, I suspect, it refers to many things and people and it'll come down to choice. Will Snape chose to defy LV in the end and chose between Harry and LV or will Harry chose or will LV chose, etc.? It's open ended to refer to anyone making the choice to live up to the prophecy.


wingardio leviosa - Jun 12, 2007 8:36 am (#516 of 601)

I think that DD in HBP somewhere suggests - LV chose Harry for a series of reasons, including that he saw his equal in him...

LV could probably just kill unceremoniously every kid born on the last week of July. But he wanted to make his 6th HX out of it, that is why he took 15 months to choose.

Then he chose Harry - but maybe he chose him earlier, based on other reasons as DD suggests. Remember, Neville looked like a squib n his infancy. And then maybe he was just waiting for Lily to 'fulfill'. [James would not be a problem, with his character...]

Until he thought to 'stimulate' the fulfillment?

It needs to be thought through.

Prophecies... when one understands their meaning, they are history.


TwinklingBlueEyes - Jun 12, 2007 9:06 am (#517 of 601)

But in Harry's case they become "your" history.

Yes, LV could have chosen differently. I do not understand your reference maybe he was just waiting for Lily to 'fulfill'. [James would not be a problem, with his character...]

Are you suggesting, without canon reference that James was more violator than Lily, with the reference to his character? Seems to me that Lily was more important, in her mother role, but still shows no difference in the sacrifices James made as opposed to Lily.

"Prophecies... when one understands their meaning, they are history." And sometimes your history becomes your future...


wingardio leviosa - Jun 12, 2007 4:39 pm (#518 of 601)

TBE,

I am saying that James was apparently (and canon wise, from Snape's Worst Memory) the more outspoken, boastful, a prima donna, Tom Cruise in Top Gun. A true Marauder. I'd expect him to be where trouble is. As the top troublemaker in his time was LV, they might have crossed paths easily.

Lily is no weaker, but probably wiser in her ways. Imagine DD told her (without explaining) to avoid defying LV - she'd follow advice. Even without DD's advice, she'd not go searching for confrontation. But then once there she'd not budge (as we 'hear' in playback in Harry's memory).

BTW - as for Neville's parents, they were Aurors=FBI of sort; crossing paths with LV was in their line of work,


Mrs Brisbee - Jun 13, 2007 4:43 am (#519 of 601)

Okay, quotes! These are all from OotP, Ch 27, "The Lost Prophecy":

Trelawney: "....Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies..."

Dumbledore: "The odd thing is, Harry," he said softly, "that it may not have meant you at all. Sybill's prophecy could have applied to two wizard boys, both born at the end of July that year, both of whom had parents in the Order of the Phoenix, both sets of parents having narrowly escaped Voldemort three times. One, of course, was you. The other was Neville Longbottom."

Dumbledore again: "He only heard the first part, the part foretelling the birth of a boy in July to parents who had thrice defied Voldemort...."

Dumbledore and Voldemort are interpreting the Prophecy to mean that the boy will be born to parents who have already defied Voldemort three times by his birth at July's end. Dumbledore makes clear that both the Potters and the Longbottoms met that criteria. So that part of the Prophecy was already fulfilled, and any more defying after the end of that July wouldn't have mattered. Dumbledore says that the parents narrowly "escaped" Voldemort. Lily did not escape, so Godric’s Hollow is definitely not what Dumbledore was referring to.


wingardio leviosa - Jun 13, 2007 8:23 am (#520 of 601)

Maybe so, MB.

But note, DD has never told Harry all what he knows about GH's night. He is dosing his revelations as precisely as a chemist. At the time he tells that, he can say so without technically lying to Harry. Why DD is covering up - I guess it is JKR's plot need. Big revelations come only at the end. The "cover" is that HP needs to learn things not faster than he can metabolize them...

Note also the wording

"both sets of parents having narrowly escaped Voldemort three times"

SETS of parents? Does it mean - did they "thrice defy" LV as a pair, or both but singly in separate occasions (6 times per pair), or three times grand total per pair, or at least one per pair three times? It is as smoky as the prophecy.

Again, no precise time sequence is offered, except for the issue of choosing one of the two.

Moreover, the focus of DD is (in that quote) to convince Harry that LV could have chosen Neville, and his purpose is to have Harry accept his fate. Of course that would be more difficult to explain if LV had chosen Harry mostly for other reasons - even forcing a bit the prophecy requirements if maybe just the mother would not comply. Therefore - as often - he shortens up the story and highlights what he wants.

Consider also that - events at and around GH on Hallows' Eve, 1981 - Lily Evans - the 6th (failed) Horcrux are some of the most crucial and still unclear points of the back-story, as tens of thousands of posts (and JKR interviews) testify. Therefore I don't think to be digging into thin air.

What that seems to suggest? It would strongly confirm that LV had chosen Harry based more on other reasons than on punctilious observance of the Prophecy. And this may well be the connection to GG the Founder and maybe also to his relic (the sword?). And this is a theme DD(=JKR) was not fully ready to disclose as of HBP. If someone has ideas, I am looking forward to them.

If nobody feels creative... alas, we will know soon enough.


Mrs Brisbee - Jun 13, 2007 9:09 am (#521 of 601)

If nobody feels creative...

Heck, creative? Not me, usually. I'm like the Zacharias Smith of the boards, The Constant Skeptic. I should hand out umbrellas before I post because I'm usually raining on somebody's parade .

I don't think it matters how the defying breaks down as long as it totals three times per each set of parents. According to Dumbledore, both the Potters and the Longbottoms qualified equally for the "thrice defied" designation by the time their sons were born. The wording of the prophecy indicates that the defying happens before the child would be born. Anything afterwards is just gravy.

LV could probably just kill unceremoniously every kid born on the last week of July. But he wanted to make his 6th HX out of it, that is why he took 15 months to choose.

Yes, that does explain why Voldemort took so long in choosing whom to murder. His final Horcrux was very important to him.

And I do agree that Voldemort must have had some good reason to settle on Harry at that particular point in time. The Potters had only been in hiding for one week. Something recent must have occurred. Maybe some big mysterious event that ties together Dumbledore having James's Invisibility Cloak and Voldemort settling on the Potters.


Soul Search - Jun 13, 2007 1:08 pm (#522 of 601)

I agree Voldemort's "choosing" Harry needs a bit more detail. It's almost if what we do have is there to steer us away from the real reason.

Dumbledore points out Voldemort chose Harry over the pureblood Neville. This seems really weak. And, Harry's parents were a witch and wizard, so a claim that Harry was a half-blood is, likewise, weak. Sure, Lily was Muggle-born, but she was a witch. I don't see why Voldemort would allow bloodline to make such an important decision for him, even given that he is, himself, half-blood. If anything, I would expect the opposite.

Maybe some of the little understood aspects of Godric's Hollow give some clues:

Godric's Hollow. Certainly related, somehow, to Godric Gryffindor. Did Voldemort feel the place favored Harry as the prophecy boy?

"Stand-aside girl." We don't have any good reason for Voldemort, at first, sparing Lily. Certainly not mercy. Did Voldemort choose Harry because of Lily?

The cloak. We still haven't figured out why James gave Dumbledore the cloak.

The horcrux object. Suppose, the object Voldemort wanted to use for his final horcrux was at Godric's Hollow or belonged to the Potters. Could very well be that the "thrice defied" was Voldemort trying to get an object from them. (I don't think it was the sword.) Wouldn't Nifflers be a good way to find some shiny object in the ruins of Godric's Hollow? Why else were we introduced to Nifflers?

Why is Harry, all of a sudden, determined to visit Godric's Hollow? It all must link together.


Tenshender - Jun 16, 2007 2:47 pm (#523 of 601)

I still think this line is the most important of the bunch. "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ..." The reasons for choosing Harry aren't relevant to me as they will be explained in the DH and we can't speculate on them too much. I still hold it to be true that "either" means Harry OR Neville must be killed at the hands of the other(LV). This could also be interpreted as either Harry or SNAPE must die at the hand of Voldy, as we've discussed before. Snape fits narrowly into the prophecy as induction into the Death Eaters can mean Rebirth, " born as the seventh month dies ...", and that he has the Dark mark burned on his arm ," and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal". I think that JKR worded this prophecy VERY carefully, as she has stated, and it definitely means more than children are meant to be able to predict, adding an element of surprise. I stuck to the Harry or Voldy must die interpretation when I was younger too. As to whether it will be Harry or Neville, or Harry or Snape, I'm undecided. Snape dying and fulfilling the prophecy would make for a better story. 1 million gloat posts if I'm close. Please comment!


PatPat - Jun 17, 2007 3:15 pm (#524 of 601)

I am in the middle of re-reading the series in preparation for DH (as many of you are, I am sure). I am in the middle of GoF right now and I have been thinking about the line in the prophecy that Voldemort "will mark him as his equal." I think there is more to this than simply the scar and the transfer of powers. Voldemort's plan in GoF to put Harry into the Triwizard Tournament causes Harry to practice his DADA in preparation for the third task. He learns many hexes and jinxes and defenses which he may not otherwise have learned, especially the shield charm which we see Harry use several times later on. His prowess at DADA truly began in PoA, but its greatest development I believe came at this point in the series. In a way, Voldemort continues to guide Harry's development as a wizard through the choices he makes. As Dumbledore has noted, he is creating his worst enemy in more ways than one.


Mrs Brisbee - Sep 17, 2007 5:01 am (#525 of 601)

So, uh, what was the meaning of the Prophecy? Anyone worked it out post DH?


mona amon - Sep 21, 2007 2:10 am (#526 of 601)

As far as I can make out we learnt nothing new about the prophecy in DH except that it was Voldemort who died at the hand of Harry and not the other way round. This is just what I expected. No 'crow eating' for me on the Prophecy thread!

What puzzles me somewhat is why Voldemort took that Prophecy so seriously. Sybil Trelawney did not have any great reputation as a seer. In Macbeth one of the prophesies is fulfilled before Macbeth starts harbouring ambitions of becoming King. Dumbledore gives us the impression that most prophesies are not fulfilled. But Voldemort, as soon as he hears part of the prophecy from a junior DE, starts hunting down the boy who may be a threat to him and even has plans to make the last horcrux with his murder!


Joanna Lupin - Sep 21, 2007 2:50 am (#527 of 601)

DD gave the answer to this question, Voldemort was on a lookout for the one who would challenge him and jumped upon hearing the prophecy into action believing that he was eradicating the only threat to himself.


PeskyPixie - Sep 24, 2007 11:22 am (#528 of 601)

Is Harry the only one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord because part of the Dark Lord's soul resides within him. Nobody can kill Voldie until Harry is killed. Thus, the power to prevent Voldemort's return is in Harry (along with the other Horcruxes of course). Just a different way of looking at it!


Joanna Lupin - Sep 24, 2007 12:19 pm (#529 of 601)

And, obviously, had Harry not been the horcrux he (or anyone) would never have been able to find the diadem at Hogwarts in time to prevent Voldemort moving it elsewhere.


Luna Logic - Sep 25, 2007 12:01 am (#530 of 601)

Very interesting idea, Joanna. I did wonder about the facility with which Harry had found the diadem, through a continuation of quasi-miraculous associations. Do you want to say that Harry was guided by Voldemort’s soul bit?


Joanna Lupin - Sep 25, 2007 3:06 am (#531 of 601)

Not exactly, I mean Harry used the connection to his advantage and did what needed to be done. We must remember that Voldemort and Harry are very alike (except that they're poles apart), and their thinking process seems to be moving along the same lines, too.


Mrs Brisbee - Sep 26, 2007 10:35 am (#532 of 601)

The "mark him as equal" bit came in handy, to be sure, once Harry learned to control the connection.

I was wondering about the last line: "and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ..." Why "must"? Dumbledore seemed to think that only if Harry died at Voldemort's hand would he be able to live. But why "must" Voldemort die at Harry's hand?

I realize that a prophecy needn't come true, but I also thought that in the Potterverse that if the participants chose to follow the prophecy than the prophecy would mark true events.

Is it that the Prophecy was finally fulfilled in the forest? And before that if someone other than Voldemort or Harry had tried to kill either one of them they would have survived because of the Horcrux-like effects of Voldy's soulbit in Harry and Harry's blood in Voldy? That doesn't seem to me to be exactly what is going on, but I can't seem to get it to make sense in my mind.


PatPat - Sep 26, 2007 11:24 am (#533 of 601)

I always looked at that line differently, Mrs. Brisbee. "Live" has more than one meaning. I always thought that neither could go on with their lives knowing that the other was alive. Voldemort was never going to stop searching for Harry because of the prophecy and the fact that Harry kept defying him. He could not "live" knowing Harry was still alive. Harry, in turn, could not move on with his life knowing that Voldemort was alive again, the man who had murdered his parents. Neither would be satisfied to live their lives until the other was gone. It goes back to the whole "choice" issue. They technically could survive together, but neither would choose to as long as the other is still living.


Mrs Brisbee - Sep 27, 2007 3:20 am (#534 of 601)

While I can see that interpretation, the word "must" still bothers me. All the other lines refer to hard fact, rather than the feelings of the individuals involved. For example, the child will be born to those who have thrice defied Voldemort, not will be born to parents who feel like they should defy Voldemort. So I have to wonder if the "must" is there to give us a hard fact. I'm wondering why Rowling's chose to word it like that. There must be at least several hundred witches and wizards who won't be satisfied until Voldemort is dead, as he has killed many people's relatives. I don't see why Harry's life would need to hinge on his personally killing Voldemort if it is just a matter of getting satisfaction. Don't know if I am making sense.


Joanna Lupin - Sep 27, 2007 3:57 am (#535 of 601)

You are, actually. I think that Voldemort's deadly skill would suffice to ensure that no witch/wizard would manage to kill him. Look at McGonagall, Kingsley and Slughorn - all three are exceptionally skilled and they all were protected from Voldemort, but even so they couldn't overpower Voldemort. I don't think anyone other than Harry would be able to beat Voldemort in a duel. And Harry manages it because he is the master of the Elder Wand.

And either must die at the hand of the other, for neither can live while the other survives.

Ok that line annoys me a great deal. Could we paraphrase it to make more sense of it all?

How about: And one of them has to be killed by the other because they both cannot live at the same time? Makes no sense to me.


Mrs Brisbee - Sep 27, 2007 4:33 am (#536 of 601)

Maybe if the soulbit was counted as an entity...

The one [Harry] with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord[Voldemort] approaches ... born to those who have thrice defied him [Voldemort], born as the seventh month dies ... and the Dark Lord [Voldemort] will mark [with a soulbit] him [Harry] as equal, but he [Harry] will have power [compassion for others] the Dark Lord [Voldemort] knows not ... and either [Harry or the soulbit] must die at the hand of the other [Voldemort] for neither [Harry nor the soulbit] can live while the other [either Harry or the soulbit] survives ...

I'm not sure it works though or explains the "must" bit.

Edit: Rereading it I don't think it works. Just doesn't make sense.


Mrs. Sirius - Sep 27, 2007 8:43 am (#537 of 601)

This is on the fly, but I think it has to do with the fact that the "soul bit" has to killed by Voldemort:

Harry killed the first Horcrux

Dumbledore killed the second,

Ron the third

Hermione the forth

Slytherin's the fifth

the sixth was killed by Voldemort

Neville killed the seventh

And Voldemort essentially committed suicide he died at his own hands.


PeskyPixie - Sep 27, 2007 9:20 am (#538 of 601)

I think it all comes down to Voldemort marking Harry as his equal with a piece of his soul, creating the close bond that no two other wizards have shared in history. Voldemort, being a tyrant, could not let go of the prophecy as he feared death and needed to destroy his prophesized destroyer. He could not live while Harry survived.

The soulbit in Harry was growing stronger as Voldemort gained power. He (Harry) could not really live as himself (i.e. as a normal healthy boy) without the soulbit leaving him (i.e. the end of Voldemort). This would mean, of course, that Harry would have to die in the process and that 'neither would live, neither could survive'.

Did the wording of the prophecy (which seems to indicate that one will live and the other die) then give Dumbledore (pre-GoF) a chance to hope that Harry perhaps would not need to die to defeat Voldemort?


PatPat - Sep 27, 2007 1:34 pm (#539 of 601)

That's pretty much what I was trying to say, PeskyPixie, but I think you said it better. Sure there are other wizards who have lost family members and would want to hunt down Voldemort, but Harry is the only one that VOLDEMORT personally wants to kill. Because of the prophecy. He cannot live as long as Harry survives.

Then once Harry is infused with the soul bit, he cannot live his life until Voldemort is vanquished and the soul bit is destroyed. Even if he wanted to give up on hunting down Voldemort he cannot because of the piece of soul inside of him. He MUST vanquish Voldemort because of his own drive and desire and because of the soul bit.


NFla Barbara - Sep 27, 2007 2:15 pm (#540 of 601)

LV could not live while Harry survived, because Harry (LV thought) was a threat -- the only threat between him and immortality. And Harry could not live while LV survived, because LV would never give up the hunt. In the end, it was a self-fulfilling prophecy for LV, so it works out quite nicely that he ended up basically killing himself with his own rebounding spell.
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #541 to #570

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:18 pm


me and my shadow 813 - Jan 16, 2009 8:13 pm (#541 of 601)

Is there any point in pondering this? The idea that Severus happened to be the one who overheard the prophecy, that he loved Lily, and Vold happened to interpret the prophecy to refer to Lily's son, that Vold agreed to spare Lily's life due to Severus's request, thus giving Lily the "opportunity" to sacrifice her life in that special way, which provided Harry with that special, ancient protection. So in a horrible twist of fate Severus's request was responsible for providing Lily with this opportunity to seal Harry with the charm?

If the prophecy hadn't been heard, as JKR questions a la Macbeth, would it have any weight? Another question is, was Severus meant to hear it, as opposed to Malfoy or Rowle, who wouldn't have asked for Lily to be spared, which wouldn't have given her the chance to step-in with her own life and so Harry would be dead, and on and on...

I'm sure it's been hashed and rehashed, but - any thoughts?


tandaradei - Jan 17, 2009 9:54 am (#542 of 601)

I've pondered a fair few prophecies in the Bible and have come up with some ideas independent of what commentators prefer jump onto.

To me they often seem to be moral syllogisms or karmic "logical" arguments, over what will happen when a people or someone refuses to alter a lifestyle. They often seem to go like this, "if you continue kicking a stone wall you are going to hurt your foot"? but sometimes with a detail that gives the idea some memorable kick -- like, "If you don't quit messing around, well, on this day and in this way you will get your comeuppance." I guess I also look at prophecies as Karmic in the sense of maintaining a belief that consequences will always result in proportion to an offense, no matter how much one tries to wiggle out of those consequences. And I would note, that those consequences are possibly the defining meat of the prophecy. Without pulling in religious arguments (like God is an Overseer, managing such prophecies), in my opinion we can still view prophecies somewhat as works coming out of some Law of Nature, like a Nature’s Conservation of Energy on a Moral Level: what goes around comes around? actions have boomerang consequences? bad stuff breeds bad stuff for the offender, and it may be impossible to avoid such, unless one reforms.

To which advice, of course, the offender rebels and becomes even more stubborn in his/her offenses. So finally, that kaka occurs, hehe, and the Prophecy is 'proven'.

IMO, it is Jo's "view" of Sybil's prophecies, that if Voldemort had repented of his ways and maybe set up a reform school for orphans or some such, that the prophecy would have de facto made itself null and void? not a comment that the prophecy was inaccurate or some such, as much as a comment that such prophecies lose their meaning when this or that offense is mitigated.


me and my shadow 813 - Jan 17, 2009 1:51 pm (#543 of 601)

Whoa, tandaradei. You're my kind of poster. I'll have to ponder that for a while and get back to you...


Orion - Jan 17, 2009 2:26 pm (#544 of 601)

The prophecy doesn't have to be true, it only comes true if people act exactly as one should expect them to act... is that what you are trying to say, tandaradei? That is not quite what I believe - I think that a prophecy comes true because it is linked to the future via a time wormhole. But it is a great thought. So a prophecy, according to you, is simply very clear-sighted and has enormous knowledge of human nature.


tandaradei - Jan 17, 2009 2:53 pm (#545 of 601)

Orion said:

...[cut]...So a prophecy, according to you, is simply very clear-sighted and has enormous knowledge of human nature. ...[cut]...

Pretty much, yes. I'm not thinking clearly at the moment, but I know I should say more.

I'm happy if you replace "Nature" to "prophecy" in the above (where Nature is very clear sighted); and that Nature being Nature ... well, it naturally knows what we are all about. And it speaks in prophecy.

But I also think some extra things, like, Nature is usually triggered into making prophecies, as I understand them: you have to irritate Nature somewhat (you have to get a bit unnatural, I guess), then it responds. Too, it seems to me that most prophecies have to have a sufficient amount of Authority when given, so the person being spoken to (or about) by the prophecy is somehow given a true chance of reformation, or some chance to "work on it." I really do think our free will is part and parcel in prophecy.

I rather fear Nature also has a "sense of humor" (which we might not think so funny), and prophecy is sometimes its means if its showing its wit ... and how witless we really are. So prophecies might come about when a really talented person might think he's the bomb (a super mensch), and free to do what he wants ... and Nature thinks its time for a spanking.

On the whole I've grown less fond of prophecies that I've studied, maybe a bit more nervous. I find them intimidating.

Edit to add: sorry Orion, forgot what I was going to respond to. Yes, I think that first sentence paraphrase you made for me said pretty much what I think.


me and my shadow 813 - Jan 19, 2009 6:28 pm (#546 of 601)

That summation seems to be along the lines of how JKR described Macbeth and how DD talks to Harry about the prophecy.

I was trying to be more specific -- wondering if anyone cared to decipher -- had Severus not been the one to hear the prophecy and asked for Lily's life to be spared, would the prophecy's last half even apply?

No, to me it would not yet, ironically, Vold did not even hear the second half about 'marking him his equal' which Severus's plea to Vold made possible.


Orion - Jan 21, 2009 8:46 am (#547 of 601)

But Severus hearing the thing was part of the Prophecy. It's a wormhole conundrum.


me and my shadow 813 - Jan 21, 2009 12:16 pm (#548 of 601)

That's what I mean, Orion. It hurts me brain!: /


rambkowalczyk - Jan 26, 2009 1:32 pm (#549 of 601)

If Snape didn't hear the prophecy, maybe some other Death Eater would have and might have wanted to spare Alice Longbottom's life.


Mrs. Sirius - Feb 28, 2009 9:26 am (#550 of 601)

I was trying to be more specific -- wondering if anyone cared to decipher -- had Severus not been the one to hear the prophecy and asked for Lily's life to be spared, would the prophecy's last half even apply?

Had Voldemort said to Lily "I don't care about you I just want to kill the kid" and Lily still chosen to sacrifice herself, would the prophecy still apply? I think it would because Lily choice-love is what sets that in motion. Snape was his motivation but the choice was Lily's


me and my shadow 813 - Feb 28, 2009 10:03 am (#551 of 601)

Lily's love for her son would not have been enough to give him the "power to vanquish" Vold. If Severus had not heard the Prophecy and asked Vold to spare her, Lily would not have been given the crucial choice to live.

Severus hearing the Prophecy and his subsequent desire to save Lily is what caused the elements of the Prophecy to be set in place. You could say Lily's love is crucial, but it is the love that Severus once felt from her and still has towards her that is the catalyst for Harry's ability to finish Vold.


Mrs. Sirius - Feb 28, 2009 9:50 pm (#552 of 601)

lol, shadow, I wrote a long essay (which was not published here, uh uhmmm) saying just that. It was Snape's love that protected Harry.


Solitaire - Feb 28, 2009 10:20 pm (#553 of 601)

It was Snape's love that protected Harry.

Does Jo know this? it has always seemed to me that she thought it was Lily's love.


Mrs. Sirius - Mar 1, 2009 10:13 am (#554 of 601)

Chicken and egg, Soli. Which came first, Snape's love or Lily’s love. Without Snape's (love for Lily) giving Lily her option on her life, she wouldn't have the option to offer her life for Harry. I still wonder if Voldemort had considered Lily not worthy of killing (like that child in the street that Halloween night), would Lily's sacrifice still been as effective?

Now this makes me wonder, JKR being as she is, WHY did she show us that Muggle child that Voldemort could easily have killed but chose NOT to on that very night? She specifically shows Voldemort arbitrarily choosing not to kill a Muggle inconveniently in the way, he deliberately chooses not to kill. He could just as easily chosen not to kill Muggle Lily with out Snape's request.


Julia H. - Mar 1, 2009 10:30 am (#555 of 601)

I think Lily would have been different. Perhaps not killing the Muggle child shows how much Voldemort was concentrating on the big goal. He was in a hurry, too.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 1, 2009 2:52 pm (#556 of 601)

He would absolutely kill a Mudblood in the Order who had defied him three times, would he not?

Although he hates Muggles and randomly dismissed an opportunity to kill one, I would think he hates Mudbloods far more, who are in his mind a Muggle who stole magic from a wizard. I cannot fathom him randomly deciding to spare Lily's life.


Solitaire - Mar 1, 2009 3:14 pm (#557 of 601)

I rather doubt any wizard seriously believes that Muggle-born witches and wizards "stole" magic, anymore than the German people actually believed that Jewish children of all things could be dangerous to the state. That lame excuse gives the Ministry the power to arrest and imprison them, that's all.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 1, 2009 3:24 pm (#558 of 601)

I don't think many on this forum would disagree with your statement. My point is the Vold/DE party line is that Mudbloods stole magic and are target number one. Combine this with a Mudblood who is in the Order and who defied him three times, and to me there is no chance that Lily would have randomly been spared. I'm sure I didn't have to explain my post, but just in case ...


Mrs Brisbee - Mar 1, 2009 8:30 pm (#559 of 601)

If it were Alice Longbottom, then what? She was a Pure Blood. Would Voldemort have given her the option of stepping aside because of that?


Julia H. - Mar 1, 2009 9:58 pm (#560 of 601)

No. She was also an Order member, had defied him three times etc. But most of all, I think, for Voldemort, killing the mother and the father was just part of the job. To him, it was the "natural" way of removing obstacles. It is worth noting how JKR describes a "sense of purpose" or something similar Voldemort was feeling as he was planning to kill someone. James was also a Pureblood. I think Voldemort would have been willing to kill even Bellatrix if it had been her child (although Bella would perhaps have voluntarily sacrificed her son). But I agree that Lily being Muggle-born (on top of everything else) made it, if possible, even more likely.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 1, 2009 10:11 pm (#561 of 601)

I agree, Julia and would add that to me Pure Blood members of the Order would be generally considered by Vold to be blood traitors and, unless willing to join the DEs, would be killed instantly.

It is possible that Vold would give Alice the opportunity to join him and live, but not simply spare her for no reason. Also, had Alice been given the choice to become a DE in that moment and refused, there is no way to know whether it would have had the same result as Vold entering the Potter home with *no intention* of killing Lily. And, we have no reason to think he would enter the Longbottom home with such an offer, since we are not told he made an offer to James that night. He was intent upon killing the parents as well as the child, until granting a favor to a faithful servant. It is said in JKR's interview with Melissa and Emerson that other people had been given a choice to live before by Vold/AK "but not in that particular way".

edited for clarity


wynnleaf - Mar 7, 2009 9:01 am (#562 of 601)

I think the "particular way" she meant was that Lily was specifically given a chance to live by her murderer. Another person might choose to give their life for someone, but not because the murderer gave them a choice of "I'm going to kill this person, but you don't have to die if you get out of the way."

JKR also commented that she thought most mothers would do the same. It's not that Lily's love as a mother was any greater than a typical mother; it's that Lily was given a specific choice that most people wouldn't have been given.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 7, 2009 10:31 am (#563 of 601)

To me it is unique in more than simply "given a chance to live by her murderer" because, as I mentioned above, JKR specifically says that other people had been given the choice to live by a murderer. This situation had never happened before, however, and that must mean something *else* was the crucial element. That element, to me, is that Vold had wanted to kill her but acquiesced; Severus's wish, that was made out of love, was granted.

How this relates to the Prophecy is that without Severus's desire for her to live, the choice wouldn't have existed for Lily to make and the 'power' would not have been instilled in Harry. As wynnleaf pointed out, JKR made a point to say that any mother would give her life for her child; but that would not be enough in this case, in the case of the Prophecy and the 'power'.


wynnleaf - Mar 7, 2009 2:33 pm (#564 of 601)

JKR specifically says that other people had been given the choice to live by a murderer. (MAMS)

Actually that's not quite right. See below:

ES: This is one of my burning questions since the third book - why did Voldemort offer Lily so many chances to live? Would he actually have let her live?

JKR: Mmhm.

ES: Why?

JKR: [silence] Can't tell you. But he did offer, you're absolutely right. Don't you want to ask me why James's death didn't protect Lily and Harry? There’s your answer, you've just answered your own question, because she could have lived and chose to die. James was going to be killed anyway. Do you see what I mean? I’m not saying James wasn't ready to; he died trying to protect his family but he was going to be murdered anyway. He had no - he wasn't given a choice, so he rushed into it in a kind of animal way, I think there are distinctions in courage. James was immensely brave. But the caliber of Lily's bravery was, I think in this instance, higher because she could have saved herself. Now any mother, any normal mother would have done what Lily did. So in that sense her courage too was of an animal quality but she was given time to choose. James wasn't. It's like an intruder entering your house, isn't it? You would instinctively rush them. But if in cold blood you were told, "Get out of the way," you know, what would you do? I mean, I don't think any mother would stand aside from their child. But does that answer it? She did very consciously lay down her life. She had a clear choice -

ES: And James didn't.

JKR: Did he clearly die to try and protect Harry specifically given a clear choice? No. It's a subtle distinction and there's slightly more to it than that but that's most of the answer.

MA: Did she know anything about the possible effect of standing in front of Harry?

JKR: No - because as I've tried to make clear in the series, it never happened before. No one ever survived before. And no one, therefore, knew that could happen.

MA: So no one - Voldemort or anyone using Avada Kedavra - ever gave someone a choice and then they took that option [to die] -

JKR: They may have been given a choice, but not in that particular way.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 7, 2009 3:45 pm (#565 of 601)

MA: So no one - Voldemort or anyone using Avada Kedavra - ever gave someone a choice and then they took that option [to die] -

JKR: They may have been given a choice, but not in that particular way.

Others had been given a choice by a murderer, but not in that particular way. What does that say to you, wynnleaf? How is that not "quite right"?


Mrs. Sirius - Mar 7, 2009 10:43 pm (#566 of 601)

JKR: They may have been given a choice, but not in that particular way.

So that confirms it, Snape's love saved Harry. The "particular way" that Lily was given the choice was that Snape, who loved her, created the opportunity for her to have the option to save herself. She threw away the opportunity to save herself because she loved her child.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 7, 2009 11:10 pm (#567 of 601)

Particularly because JKR also gives us another clue in the following line. Bear in mind that this was right after book 6 came out and she was chronically downplaying, side-stepping and changing the subject when probed for details regarding what -- we now know -- had to do with Severus's love connection with Lily's life and death. This line is very apparent now:

JKR: Did he clearly die to try and protect Harry specifically given a clear choice? No. It's a subtle distinction and there's slightly more to it than that but that's most of the answer.

Downplaying and sidestepping extraordinaire, yet now obvious.


Mrs Brisbee - Mar 8, 2009 5:59 am (#568 of 601)

I am dubious about that conclusion, because I have a hard time believing magic is that omniscient.

For Voldemort's intent, Voldemort didn't ask Lily to step aside because Snape loved her, but because Snape lusted after her. As far as I know, Lily did not know that Snape was involved at all. I just find it hard to believe that the magic is keying in on the secret love of Severus Snape, when he is not present, and the principals have no knowledge of this love, and these events of Snape's request and the protective magic that sprang from Lily's sacrifice are separated by both time and space. I don't think that magic has been shown to work that way in the HP universe, and feel it is more likely that the interaction of Voldemort and Lily was the cause of the protection.


Julia H. - Mar 8, 2009 7:00 am (#569 of 601)

The observation "They may have been given a choice, but not in that particular way" does imply that JKR intended this magic to "know" more than just the immediate circumstances, since the way Voldemort gives Lily a choice does not seem to happen in a "particular way" in itself, only if we know the background of the offer, which, whatever Voldemort thinks, is love. When JKR said "and there's slightly more to it than that", she could only be referring to something that the reader did not know at the time and it was Snape's request and his love.

Love is not ordinary magic in the HP universe - there are no spells connected to it, it is not controlled by a wand, it is not taught and practised at school. There is a separate, secret room in the Department of Mysteries devoted to Love. Voldemort, an extremely powerful wizard, understands and controls various types of magic but he does not understand love. Love seems to be "deep magic", beyond everyday magic.

In DH, Harry is ready to allow himself to be killed, not knowing he could survive. As a direct result of this sacrifice, all the people in the castle will be protected against Harry's murderer, Voldemort, despite the fact that they are not present where the sacrifice happens (in the forest), nor do they know about the sacrifice. This is another instance in which the magical power of love and sacrifice unites people who are not all present in the decisive moment.

Dumbledore identifies love as being the power to vanquish the Dark Lord. I think it takes Snape's love for Lily, Lily's love for Harry and finally Harry's love for a lot of people to defeat him.


Mrs Brisbee - Mar 8, 2009 11:09 am (#570 of 601)

In DH, Harry is ready to allow himself to be killed, not knowing he could survive. As a direct result of this sacrifice, all the people in the castle will be protected against Harry's murderer, Voldemort, despite the fact that they are not present where the sacrifice happens (in the forest), nor do they know about the sacrifice. This is another instance in which the magical power of love and sacrifice unites people who are not all present in the decisive moment.-- Julia H.

But Harry is present when he "dies", and intends to give his life to protect those other people-- or perhaps more accurately, Voldemort offers a contract, and then violates it. Snape is not present at all when Lily sacrifices herself, it is Lily who does the sacrificing and Voldemort the killing, and neither person there who are weaving the magic know Snape's intent. I don't see the connection.

Snape asks Voldemort to spare Lily. Voldemort would otherwise have simply killed her outright, because she is Muggle-born. Snape has a hand in creating the situation, but he does not form the magic that comes out of it. It doesn't make any sense to me that it would work like that.

Query: Which interview is the excerpt from, and when was it given?
 
 
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The Meaning of the Prophecy - posts #571 to #601

Post  Potteraholic on Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:21 pm


Julia H. - Mar 8, 2009 12:36 pm (#571 of 601)

I don't see the connection.

It is not exactly the same situation, yet "love magic" in this case is extended to people who are not present when the sacrifice happens. Harry is directly present when Lily sacrifices her life for him, but apparently it is not compulsory. I don't think Harry - when he makes his own sacrifice - can even consciously think of each and every one of those people his sacrifice will protect. If this is possible, I don't see why the magic could not take Snape's love into account. Snape is not present personally, but something that is the direct consequence of his love for Lily is directly involved in the specific situation. (Perhaps it also counts that asking Voldemort to spare Lily's life involves a risk for Snape - Voldemort could easily react by deciding that Snape is a traitor and deserves to die and Snape consciously takes this risk to save Lily when he could choose not to.)

True, neither Lily, nor Voldemort knows about Snape's love, but they don't know what the sacrifice will do either. Nor does Harry know it when it comes to his sacrifice. It suggests the participants don't have to know anything about this magic for the magic to work.

Of course, it is a matter of personal interpretation. To me, the quote from JKR strongly suggests that there is a "secret" component in the magic that is not directly visible in the situation, and it is this component that makes Voldemort's offer to Lily "particular" - something that has never been before even though other people in other ways have been offered the choice to live or die.


Mrs Brisbee - Mar 8, 2009 2:23 pm (#572 of 601)

It is not exactly the same situation, yet "love magic" in this case is extended to people who are not present when the sacrifice happens.

I think this is why I don't see a connection. Harry is present in the forest, he's the one doing the sacrificing. Voldemort's the one doing the killing. It is their interaction that creates the protective magic, as far as I can see. There is no equivalent to Snape asking Voldemort to spare Lily in this scenario, and yet a powerful protective magic springs into being. Therefore, I conclude that Snape's role had no magical effect.

Doesn't Voldemort allude to the "old magic" that is the protection once or twice in the books? I thought Diary Tom said something about it, but I'd have to double check. It doesn't seem to be a totally unknown occurrence. It sounds more like it is the nonmagical circumstances that were special, or the fact that Voldemort had a Horcrux.


me and my shadow 813 - Mar 8, 2009 3:02 pm (#573 of 601)

As far as I know, Lily did not know that Snape was involved at all. I just find it hard to believe that the magic is keying in on the secret love of Severus Snape - Mrs B

I am not saying that Severus's love was a protection similar to Lily's. My personal point is that Severus's love for Lily was the initiator of the Prophecy details coming to fruition, specifically due to his plea providing the choice for Lily to live. Were it not for Severus's desire to try to save Lily there would have been no choice available, and she would have been AK'd before she knew what hit her. We have no reason to believe Vold would have decided to give Lily any choice to live if not for Severus's plea.

The interview is from July 2005, it is a 3-part or 3-page link. There was a link to it on our forum but I'm not sure if it still exists. You can go to Leaky Cauldron, click on JKR Interviews and find it under 2005.


Julia H. - Mar 8, 2009 3:16 pm (#574 of 601)

It sounds more like it is the nonmagical circumstances that were special, or the fact that Voldemort had a Horcrux.

I don't think Voldemort having Horcruxes has anything to do with Lily's love sacrifice. As for the non-magical circumstances being special: I think whoever offers to spare anyone's life, the person will have a reason to do so. JKR says it had to happen in "a particular way" and also that "there's slightly more to it than" the subtlety of being offered the chance to live or not and that similar things have happened but not in that particular way and therefore nobody has survived the AK before Harry. If we accept what JKR says, it seems it matters what the reason is why the person intent on murder offers to spare another's life and therefore the magic takes this reason into account even if it is present only in an abstract form. We can say it is a non-magical circumstance but - according to what JKR says - this circumstances influences a magical occurrence.

There is no equivalent to Snape asking Voldemort to spare Lily in this scenario, and yet a powerful protective magic springs into being.

It is so, but Harry - once facing Voldemort - is not given a choice to live or to die. He has the initial choice of going to the forest and offer himself as sacrifice - or not. Harry actually knows that he sacrifices himself to save other people, only not in the way it happens. (He thinks once he is dead, someone will have a chance to kill Voldemort if Nagini is killed first.) Lily does not seek Voldemort voluntarily, she does not originally want to sacrifice herself and when she chooses to sacrifice herself, she acts instinctively and has no time to think about whether she can really help Harry. (The purely logical "prediction" would be that once Lily has sacrificed herself, Harry will be killed by Voldemort all the same.)

What I am trying to say is that the two situations have several differences, therefore this magic can work in different scenarios. Yet, in both cases, people who are not present at the actual sacrifice are involved in the magic: In Harry's sacrifice it is all those people who are protected, while in Lily's sacrifice it is apparently (according to JKR) Snape, who made Voldemort's offer to Lily "particular".


wynnleaf - Mar 8, 2009 3:35 pm (#575 of 601)

This is the way I interpret JKR's interview comments about Lily's death. JKR spoke at length about the fact that it was Lily's choice that was the important part. She doesn't talk at all about the love being any different from most mothers. In fact, she makes a point that other mothers would do the same. So it's not the love that's unusual. What's unusual is the choice.

And JKR doesn't ever even imply that Snape's choice -- which was indeed important -- had anything to do with the love that protected Harry. Remember, it's not Lily's choice that protects Harry, but her love. One thing we know for certain and that's that Snape didn't love Harry. Snape's love, if such a similar situation had arisen, might have been able to protect Lily, but it could not protect Harry because Snape didn't love Harry.

Don't you want to ask me why James's death didn't protect Lily and Harry? There’s your answer, you've just answered your own question, because she could have lived and chose to die. (JKR)

The protection was due to the choice. JKR is extremely clear about it.

So what about those last words in the interview?

MA: So no one - Voldemort or anyone using Avada Kedavra - ever gave someone a choice and then they took that option [to die] -

JKR: They may have been given a choice, but not in that particular way.

"not in that particular way." Which particular way is JKR talking about? JKR already made it very clear that the key element was the choice Lily made. I think what JKR was talking about in the last comment was that the thing that was different was the way the choice was given. Melissa asked if JKR meant that no one had ever murdered someone and given them a choice. JKR answered that others may have been given a choice, "but not in that particular way". It's the choice that has a "particularity" to it. The specifics of the choice are what was different. Others may have been able to choose to avoid death. Maybe someone was offered "join me or die" or maybe someone was offered something else. But no one had been told to stand aside so that the killer could kill someone, with the specific understanding that if they stood aside and allowed the killer to commit the murder, they would live. And the decision to die had to be from love, not just obligation or bravery or duty or any other good things. It to include love for the intended victim. Because it was the love that was the protection, not bravery or some other virtue.

In other words, two things were present for the first time. 1. A killer offered for another person to live if they would stand aside and allow the murder of another person. And 2, the person who was offered this choice deeply loved the intended victim and was willing to die for them.

Therefore the decisive and intentional choice to die for someone who was loved, protected the second intended victim. The clear choice was necessary, and the actual love was the protection.

I'm not too sure if JKR would consider anyone who loved anyone else capable of doing this, or if it was only a mother's love or a parent's love that would do it. JKR sets great store on the influence of parents.


mona amon - Mar 8, 2009 5:06 pm (#576 of 601)

Well explained, Wynnleaf! I understood JKR's comment properly only after reading your post.

I'm not too sure if JKR would consider anyone who loved anyone else capable of doing this, or if it was only a mother's love...

It evidently works for everyone. Harry makes a conscious decision to allow Voldemort to kill him, so that Voldemort could be defeated and all his future victims could be safe from him. In other words he chooses death so that LV's future victims can live, just like Lily chooses to die rather than stop shielding Harry. And his sacrifice protects all these victims from Voldemort, just as Lily's sacrifice protected Harry.


Julia H. - Mar 9, 2009 1:22 am (#577 of 601)
Edited Mar 9, 2009 4:56 am

But no one had been told to stand aside so that the killer could kill someone, with the specific understanding that if they stood aside and allowed the killer to commit the murder, they would live. (Wynnleaf)

If this was the special circumstance, I don't see why JKR had to be so mysterious about it. It would not have been a spoiler. BTW, Harry's love protects other people even though his choice is not the same as Lily's. Lily could indeed have lived if she had let Harry die because she was not Voldemort's primary target. Harry's case was different. He was the one Voldemort wanted to kill in the first place. Therefore if he had chosen not to sacrifice himself voluntarily (he could have stayed in the castle with the others, for example, which he might have done if he had not seen Snape's memories), Voldemort would still have wanted to kill him and would have killed others specifically to get to Harry. So Harry's choice was different but it still worked in the same way as Lily's.

EDITED for typos.


wynnleaf - Mar 9, 2009 4:32 am (#578 of 601)

If this was the special circumstance, I don't see why JKR had to be so mysterious about it. (Julia)

I'd assume because she didn't want to explain why LV gave Lily such a specific choice. She didn't want to go into detail and therefore wanted the aura of mystery to prevail, so that her questioners would quit going down that particular path of questions.

It would not have been a spoiler. BTW, Harry's love protects other people even though his choice is not the same as Lily's. Lily could indeed had lived if she had let Harry die because she was not Voldemort's primary target. Harry's case was different. He was the one Voldemort wanted to kill in the first place. Therefore if he had chosen not to sacrifice himself voluntarily (he could have stayed in the castle with the others, for example, which he might have done if he had not seen Snape's memories), Voldemort would still have wanted to kill him and would have killed others specifically to get to Harry. So Harry's choice was different but it still worked in the same way as Lily's. (Julia)

Frankly, I think it's another case of JKR being a bit mixed in her plotting. Lily's love protects Harry for years and years and it's because she's given a specific choice. James' love didn't do that, because he'd have died anyway. But somehow Harry's "voluntary" death, even though was going to be killed anyway, serves to protect even people that he might not have known very well. Love? I'm not sure other than a general humanitarian care for them.


Gerald Costales - Jul 23, 2009 10:09 pm (#579 of 601)

There has been some Prophecy related comments in the + Wands: Your Thoughts After Book Seven thread. I'm posting this reply here. (Link to original post -Gerald Costales, "+ Wands: Your Thoughts After Book Seven" #113, 23 Jul 2009 10:57 pm)

I'm rereading Book 6 - excerpts about the Prophecy

Pointing at Harry with his black withered hand, he(Dumbledore) said, "You are setting too much store by the prophecy!"

pg 509 - HBP- American Edition

.."If Voldemort had never heard of the prophecy, would it have been fulfilled? Would it have meant anything? Of course not! Do you think every prophecy in the Hall of Prophecy has been fulfilled?"

pg 510 - HBP - American Edition

. . . . ."You see, the prophecy does not mean you have to do anything! But the prophecy caused Lord Voldemort to mark you as his equal. . . .In other words, you are free to choose your way, quite free to turn your back on the prophecy! But Voldemort continues to set store by the prophecy. He will continue to hunt you. . . which makes it certain, that --"

.."That one of us is going to end up killing the other." said Harry.

pg 512 - HBP - American Edition


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 24, 2009 9:22 am (#580 of 601)

I recently recommended a book called Parallel Worlds on the "recommended reading" thread. It is written by a physicist and describes the Multiverse Theory. One of the ideas pertains to how I perceive Prophecy, which is there are infinite possibilities until a key or pivotal decision is made. Once a pivotal decision is made to activate this prophetic possibility into probability, the wheels begin to turn for all involved. You are involved and affected whether or not you are yet aware of this key decision by another person.

I see four main keys/pivots in the set up of the Harry Potter series, where each decision created a major shift in the course of "probable" events: 1)Severus overhears the Prophecy and takes it to Vold; 2)Vold decides Harry is the child referred to; 3)Severus begs Vold to spare Lily's life; 4)Lily comes between Harry and Vold.

So the idea that hundreds or thousands of Prophecies sit in the Hall of Prophecy unrealized has similarities in this Multiverse Theory. Once a choice is made, that possible reality is brought into view. Of course there are many esoteric, spiritual, religious and scientific explanations for the idea of prophecy, but I thought this was interesting.


Gerald Costales - Jul 24, 2009 9:34 pm (#581 of 601)

Of the 4 key/pivot events you have, 2 involve Snape. So, Snape appears to be a key/pivot person in your view of the Prophecy.

But there are minefields of people, events, and choices that can affect the Prophecy.

Looking at your key/pivot events, I believe any Death Eater could have heard the Prophecy and relayed what was heard to Voldemort. The key/pivot events that remain then could still lead to Harry being the "Chosen One"

. . Voldemort picks Harry

. . Snape begs for Lily's life

. . Lily sacrifices herself

But, JKR has stated that Voldemort had two choices Harry or Neville. And you have stated agreement of this in another thread

". . .that if Vold had not made Harry the Chosen One (their could have been the possibility of us) reading the Neville Longbottom series.

(link to your original post - me and my shadow 813, "+ Wands: Your Thoughts After Book Seven" #112, 23 Jul 2009 7:14 pm )

I've added the part in parenthesizes and deleted a bit of your original post. But, I am fairly certain that you agree Voldemort had two choices after hearing the Prophecy? Harry or Neville.

I think that if you are to pick one key/pivot event, it would be Voldemort’s choice of Harry. I see all the remaining events and choices in the series flowing from this one key/pivot event.

But, one must be aware that one misstep by any number of people, like in any minefield, could have proved fatal to Harry.


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 25, 2009 4:05 pm (#582 of 601)

Yes there are many smaller decisions (like Dumbledore deciding to interview a candidate, and that particular candidate, for Divination) that all contribute to the path of Harry's destiny. Those I mentioned are, I believe, the key ones that created major shifts in its course.

You're right, any DE could have overheard and told Vold. But if that were the case I wonder if Severus would have known he was planning on targeting Harry, because it is crucial that Severus knew, to make the choice to beg Vold to spare Lily (and go to Dumbledore for help, and switch sides). Without the choice Severus provided her, Lily's death would not have instilled the "power" in Harry.


Gerald Costales - Jul 25, 2009 7:59 pm (#583 of 601)

re: post #582

". . . I wonder if Severus would have known he was planning on targeting Harry, because it is crucial that Severus knew, to make the choice to beg Vold to spare Lily (and go to Dumbledore for help, and switch sides). Without the choice Severus provided her, Lily's death would not have instilled the "power" in Harry."

I agree. But, my point is that there are too many variables to construct an exact list of the key/pivot events in the Series.

I think my trouble is that there is a part of me that is a fatalist. Which basically is that there are things, events, circumstances, etc. beyond our control. And that at times there are forces unseen that guide things, circumstances, etc. to an ultimate goal, ending, conclusion, etc.

Here are some old thoughts from and older post that I have made.

Fate, Destiny, Choice, Chance, Co-incidence, Luck, Omens, Superstitions, Charms, and Talismans - Harry’s life is a mix of not only Harry’s Choices, etc. but the Choices, etc. made by others. And how does Fate or Destiny fit into the mix of Harry’s life?

Wouldn’t Fate or Destiny and 'the Prophecy' be similar. Couldn’t these concepts being labeled mostly as things out of Harry’s control. Wouldn’t Good Choices and Hard Work or Determination be similar. Couldn’t these concepts being labeled as mostly things within Harry’s control.

The whole nature of Predestination, Prophecy, Fate, etc. is so abstract that one cannot tell the true beginning of events.

(link Gerald Costales, "+ Choice Vs Destiny in the Harry Potter Universe" #42, 8 Nov 2006 8:41 am to original post)


rambkowalczyk - Jul 27, 2009 4:49 am (#584 of 601)

.."If Voldemort had never heard of the prophecy, would it have been fulfilled? Would it have meant anything? Of course not! Do you think every prophecy in the Hall of Prophecy has been fulfilled?"

I think I disagree with Dumbledore. I think when a prophecy is made, that there is an overwhelming trend for it to happen. For instance, Sybil's 2nd prophecy was only heard by Harry and he didn't tell anyone about it until after it was fulfilled. I don't think that Harry's choices would have been different if he didn't hear Sybil talk about the Dark Lord's servant going back to him.

Therefore I see that the prophecy understood that there was something about the One that would cause him to act in such a way that would eventually lead to Voldemort's downfall.

In this case it was the fact that Harry felt that he couldn't rest until he did something about Voldemort. I think also that Neville would have felt the same way if it were his parents that were killed.

One could also argue that the prophecy was made knowing that the Dark Lord would hear it and feel compelled to act.


Solitaire - Jul 27, 2009 8:27 am (#585 of 601)

Harry did act on the prophecy, though. He just applied it to Sirius black instead of Peter. It is unfortunate that he was not able to prevent the servant (Peter) from rejoining his master.


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 27, 2009 9:10 am (#586 of 601)

ramb, I would agree that once a prophecy is *heard* by those connected to it, there is a trend for it to happen. Had Severus not overheard (or another DE), Dumbledore would not have told anyone and it would have sat dormant. However, I believe Vold's character would have inspired another such "conflict", to cause him to act, and cause his own demise eventually.

I agree that prophecy has its own knowing and connection with fate/future events. However, I was attempting to discuss here what JKR was trying to impart to us, and given her feelings about Macbeth (what if he never ran into the witches?) I think she doesn't set much store in *un-heard* prophecies.

edit: I should clarify that I've added my two knuts, not just my perception of JKR's opinion


Solitaire - Jul 27, 2009 11:45 am (#587 of 601)

Based on the prophecy, it sounds like Voldemort was after James and Lily anyway, considering they had thrice defied him!


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 27, 2009 3:35 pm (#588 of 601)

It's intriguing to break it down:

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ...

Intro, vague, nothing to go on yet obviously caught Severus's attention;

born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ...

Very specific, only two births. This will occur whether or not Vold acts upon the Prophecy;

and the Dark Lord will mark him as equal,

This will only occur if Vold acts upon the Prophecy;

but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ...

Again, only will this be true IF he acts;

and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ...

This, to me, is where the true intelligence of the Prophecy lies. There is IMO a complex path of events insinuated here (i.e., knowing of all my aforementioned "pivot" points as well as Harry as Horcrux, Harry destroying other Horcruxes, and more I'm sure!)


Solitaire - Jul 27, 2009 6:10 pm (#589 of 601)

The interesting thing about that last line is that Harry did not kill Voldemort. Harry used Expelliarmus! against him. It was Voldemort who used the AK ... and died when it rebounded on him once again! (Some people never learn.)


Soul Search - Jul 27, 2009 6:46 pm (#590 of 601)

So, the prophecy wasn't fulfilled?


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 27, 2009 7:34 pm (#591 of 601)

Yes, IMO the Prophecy was fulfilled.

The term "at the hand of the other" to me is not to be taken literally. As is very common with prophecy, it has a loose meaning and usually goes so far as to be a riddle. In this case I take "at the hand of the other" to mean due to the other's actions.

edit: LOL. Just Googled "at+the+hand" and looked up the idiom on freedictionary.com, which defines it as: because of someone's actions.

That clever Jo.


Gerald Costales - Jul 27, 2009 7:56 pm (#592 of 601)

re: post #586

" . . .given her feelings about Macbeth"

What exactly is her feeling about Macbeth. Is this the "Scottish play" JKR referred to?


rambkowalczyk - Jul 27, 2009 7:56 pm (#593 of 601)

Harry did act on the prophecy, though. Solitaire (referring to Sybil's 2nd prophecy.

Yes and no. I don't think Harry's actions would have been any different if he didn't hear the prophecy. He still would have gone to Hagrid's hut because of Buckbeak. Still would have found Scabbers, still would have chased him when he escaped, still would have followed the dog under the Whomping Willow, still would have spared Peter.

I would agree that once a prophecy is *heard* by those connected to it, there is a trend for it to happen. MAMS

Guess we just disagree. I think that if Voldemort didn't hear the prophecy, there might have still been another way for it to happen.

I do agree however that JKR did want to point out that a person can act to make a prophecy true and in effect cause his own downfall.


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 27, 2009 8:16 pm (#594 of 601)

ramb, I wouldn't say we totally disagree. Like I said, I'm mostly trying to figure out the meaning of the HP series. I give prophecy more credit than JKR does.

Here's the quote about "the Scottish play" from the 2005 Melissa and Emerson interview:

ES: What if he never heard the prophecy?

JKR: And that's it, isn't it. As I said, that's what I posted on my site -

ES: I'm glad you put that up.

JKR: It's the 'Macbeth' idea. I absolutely adore 'Macbeth'. It is possibly my favorite Shakespeare play. And that's the question isn't it? If Macbeth hadn't met the witches, would he have killed Duncan? Would any of it have happened? Is it fated or did he make it happen? I believe he made it happen.

Given the last line, it seems that JKR feels it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe we're all correct: that there is a reason for the prophecy to be made AND heard, and that reason is to test the foolish one, to see if they will believe it and fulfill it him- or herself, rather than believing in themselves, regardless of whether they are Dark or Light. JM2K

edited for clarity


Solitaire - Jul 27, 2009 8:23 pm (#595 of 601)

What if Macbeth had heard the prophecy but he'd had a different kind of wife ... one who was a source of good rather than evil counsel? What if he'd not told his wife about the prophecy at all? Would he have gone through with the murders? **sigh** That discussion, alas, is for a different forum ...


Gerald Costales - Jul 27, 2009 8:50 pm (#596 of 601)

Lady Macbeth is quite evil. After hearing the prophecy that Macbeth will become King. It is Lady Macbeth that convinces Macbeth to murder Duncan. Then when Macbeth removes the daggers that are the murder weapons; Lady Macbeth returns the daggers and in the process bloodies her hands.

LADY MACBETH

My hands are of your colour; but I shame

To wear a heart so white.

Lady Macbeth’s hands are red with blood. And she has just called her husband Macbeth a coward. Thus, it is Macbeth who has 'a heart so white'.

(Source for quote from Macbeth - [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] )

PS Macbeth is one of my favorite plays as well.


me and my shadow 813 - Jul 27, 2009 8:57 pm (#597 of 601)

That's my feeling, too, Soli. What I meant in my last post is that "the foolish one" basically draws a prophecy like this one to him. Same with Macbeth, IMO. On some level he chose to marry a certain kind of wife and have a certain type of people around him, which he of course allowed to influence him, etc., etc. So, he "deserved" to be tested, and is IMO summed up in one line (if I may quote):

Stay, you imperfect speakers, tell me more

O, if only he had simply kept walking.


Solitaire - Jul 27, 2009 9:06 pm (#598 of 601)

Yes ... he was weak, and his unwillingness to wait for things to come to him made him unworthy of them when they did come.


Gerald Costales - Jul 27, 2009 10:14 pm (#599 of 601)

The Prophecy makes the series more interesting. It moves the Series from a simple tale of revenge (My name is Harry Potter you killed my parents. Prepare to die.) to a complex mystical quest for the salvation and liberation of both the Wizarding and Muggle Worlds.

The Prophecy makes Harry a Legend. Harry is 'the boy that lived' and later the 'Chosen One'.

It is the layers of details big and small in the Series (and Movies) that compels us to post, counter post, discuss, argue, agree, disagree, present, rebut, examine, cross examine, plea, condemn, etc. our ideas, theories, opinions, conjectures, and love of the Series(and Movies).

The Prophecy makes Harry a 'Man of Destiny'. It makes Harry a 'Hero'.


Julia H. - Aug 7, 2009 3:20 am (#600 of 601)

"...and either must die at the hand of the other..."

The interesting thing about that last line is that Harry did not kill Voldemort. Harry used Expelliarmus! against him. It was Voldemort who used the AK ... and died when it rebounded on him once again! (Solitaire)

In a way, Harry "must die" at Voldemort's hand before he really has the power to vanquish him. Could that fulfill this line? In a broader sense, we could say that both die at the hand of the other.


Gerald Costales - Aug 7, 2009 9:02 am (#601 of 601)

In the King's Cross chapter of DH, there were three people present

"It had the form of a small, naked child, curled on the ground, its skin raw and rough, flayed-looking, and it lay shuddering under a seat where it had been left, unwanted, stuffed out of sight, struggling for breath."

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DH - American edition - pages 706 and 707

Harry would awaken the next chapter and Voldemort passed out or died as well.

"The Death Eaters had been huddled around Voldemort, who seemed to have fallen to the ground. Something had happened when he had hit Harry with the Killing Curse. Had Voldemort too collapsed? It seemed like it. And both of them had fallen briefly unconscious and both of them had now returned. . . ."

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DH - American edition - page 725

I believe the Prophecy was fulfilled. But, not exactly as expected.
 
 
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