Pottermore, PoA Chapter 18 (what I’ve found so far…)

DISCLAIMER: This is not exactly a live blog and it’s definitely not a Finder’s Guide. It’s what I’ve found so far. According to my magic completion bar, I have found everything in this chapter!

Here’s what I’ve found (DO NOT READ IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO BE SPOILED!)…

CHAPTER 18: MOONY, WORMTAIL, PADFOOT AND PRONGS

Scene 1 (“Lupin’s Tale”)

  • Zoom 1:
    • Just a single zoom again. Nothing to collect. You can, however, listen to Lupin’s story about the Marauders transforming into Animagi. If you hover your cursor, you can also make Padfoot sniff in kind of a snarly way.
    • In the Comments, Let’s Call Me Lily adds: “You can also make them twitch their ears, wriggle Lupin’s snout and make Prongs shift on his feet.” To which I would reply: “Yeah, I know. And you can even make Wormtail appear! on Lupin’s far side. But what I DIDN’T know when I wrote up this chapter was that those mouse movements MATTERED for moving the completion bar!” Anyway, for those of you who wishing to complete the chapter, be sure to do the hover your cursor and interact with the Marauders in their Animagus and Werewolf forms. :)

Key to Zoom Levels:
I am using the conventions I’ve seen used elsewhere when discussing Pottermore zoom levels:

    • Zoom 1 = the original zoom level.
    • Zoom 2 = zoom in one level from Zoom 1.
    • Zoom 3 = zoom in two levels from Zoom 1.
    • Zoom OUT 2 = zoom out one level from Zoom 1.
    • Zoom OUT 3 = zoom out two levels from Zoom 1.

Ways to Read the Harry Potter Series, Part 3

This post is a composite of two separate posts that originally appeared in an area of the Chamber of Secrets forum that is not open to the public. My answers to the questionnaire (once again!) tell you more about me as a reader of Harry Potter than anything else. :)

Feel free to use the comments thread to post your own responses to the questionnaire (or to my answers).

7. When do you think does critical character analysis cross the line and becomes character bashing/racist/sexist/other?

I don’t see a lot of racism and sexism in HP character analysis. (And I steer completely clear of the rancorous Severus vs. Lily debate because I love both characters). I do suppose, though, that analysis dismissing the possibility that Molly might be able to duel effectively because she’s a mother and housewife could be construed as verging on sexism – if not crossing the line into it.

As for bashing, well…

Let’s say, hypothetically, that we’re analyzing a character who does some things that are mean spirited and some things that help in the fight against Voldemort. And let’s say, hypothetically, that someone does not like the character because of the mean spirited things the character does.

Disliking the character is not bashing. Indicating that the mean spirited things the character does are distasteful is not bashing.

However, let’s say that dislike for the character leads to an analysis that automatically pre-defines all of the character’s actions and motives as “bad” – even actions and motives that would be considered “good” if the person’s favorite characters did them. I would consider that to be bashing.

Let me use James as an example. I dislike James. That is not bashing. I am appalled by his actions in SWM. That is not bashing.

However, if I defined James’s actions on the night Voldemort comes to Godric’s Hollow in terms of James’s actions in SWM… and then decided based upon SWM that nothing James ever does could possibly be construed in a positive light – and that therefore his brave and selfless actions on the night of his death must by definition be analyzed negatively – that would be bashing.

It’s sort of the character analysis equivalent of the ad hominen attack. Basically, this is a form of analysis that imposes a pre-defined analytical outcome based almost exclusively on dislike of the character and that then manipulates the text in order to arrive at that pre-defined outcome.

I can think of other characters besides James who could be subject to this sort of analysis. ;)

8. To what extent do you allow your opinions of the characters to be swayed by the opinions of other characters?

Very little, in the end.

That doesn’t mean that I’m not influenced while I’m reading by characters’ opinions. Reacting to and testing characters’ opinions against other evidence is part of the reading experience imo. Basically, I always leave open the option to revise a character opinion based on additional information that I’m shown.

Until I read SWM, I didn’t put any stock at all in Snape’s opinions of Marauders. But for some reason, before I read TPT, I put pretty close to absolute trust in what Sirius had said about Snape. My final opinions were influenced more by what I was shown than by what I was told.

I do think that Harry’s a bit of a special case because he’s the Hero of a monomyth. It is inherent to the structure of the monomyth that the Hero have great wisdom at the end of the tale. So I do put a lot of stock in Harry’s final opinions… but that’s due to the mythic structure of the tale.

And speaking of the monomyth, etc. – I made some comments earlier about symbolism. Basically, I will engage in symbolism if the symbolism is obvious… or is suggested by JKR. But I’m not big on just combing through the text trying to force symbolic readings on it.

For example:

In Pottermore Rowling revealed her reasoning behind giving the Dursleys the number “4” in their address. She says that she sees “4” as a “hard” and “unforgiving” number, hence it winds up in the Dursley street address.

But that leaves open the question of why she creates 4 Houses at Hogwarts and 4 founders of those Houses. Is she using the same logic in creating 4 Houses as she used in assigning 4 to the Dursley address? Or is she using an entirely different logic (for example, the number of elements)? In other words, is it merely coincidental that there are also 4 Houses or does it have some kind of significance in relation to her opinion of the number 4?

Since JKR herself brings up the issue of number 4, I think this type of exploration is fairly natural and organic, not forced. But I can guarantee that if she hadn’t brought it up in the first place, I certainly would not be picking through the text looking for groups of 4 and applying some sort of symbolic approach to them! (actually, I’m not picking through the text even now!)

Speaking of the 4 Elements… JKR has stated explicitly that each House is associated with one of the Elements:

Gryffindor – Fire
Hufflepuff – Earth
Ravenclaw – Air
Slytherin – Water

So, since the Elements are pretty obviously important to JKR’s conception of the Houses, I think it’s fairly natural to explore the meanings of each of the elements and see how each House’s element applies to the House.

So yeah, I do think that there are reasonable applications of symbolism in the text.

Waiting for Pottermore: Stupefied

Here’s an amusing follow-up to the last post on DH2. Enjoy!

And speaking of stupefied…

Luna is now a Gryffindor. Yep, Luna actress (and big HP fan) Evanna Lynch sorted into Gryffindor on Pottermore.
(Many thanks to janinavalencia for finding and sharing that information).

Here’s what Evanna tweeted out about the experience:

Ahhhh umm errrrrr…. Just got sorted. Slight identity crisis. Need to sit down and process this… #pottermore

I’m in Gryffindor. #Pottermore #confusion #shock #pride #happiness #LUNADONTLEAVEME!!!

I don’t know what to do. I feel like Jo just told me I’m a man. I’m SO utterly confused.

Gryffindor! Woahhh what an honour! I’m so happy! But confused! But happy! BUT CONFUSED. #Pottermore #farewellravenclaw

Dammit, now I have to change my whole bleedin’ wardrobe!!! #pottermore #butredandgoldarenotmycolours

Sorry for the tweet explosion… I’m just…having a moment. #farewellravenclaw #pottermore #JowhathaveyouDONE?!

Sounds a bit stupefied herself, doesn’t she?

I guess we can now use this pic with feeling!

Luna in her Gryffindor Lion hat

Waiting for Pottermore DH2: choices, choices, choices

Note: While we wait for the Pottermore email, we continue our discussion of the DH2 movie…

But first… you need to know about the most deeply horrible, astonishingly EVOL poll in the history of humankind:

It’s the Anglophenia Fan Favorites poll, in which we are given the choice of voting between Alan Rickman and Benedict Cumberbatch or between Colin Firth and David Tennant.

In fandom terms, that translates:

Professor Snape (or Colonel Brandon/Alexander Dane/Hans Gruber/ Sheriff of Nottingham) VS. Sherlock Holmes.

and…

Mr. Darcy VS. Barty Crouch, Jr. / The Tenth Doctor

Yikes! Those are choices that really hurt – probably at least as much as the choices the filmmakers had to face in translating the second half of Deathly Hallows to the screen.

Choices that hurt

Let’s say you’re doing a book that fans are passionate about. There are moments that fans have been dying to see…

Fred’s death, for example. Or Snape’s loss of Lily’s friendship. Or Dumbledore’s backstory. Or Snape saving Lupin’s life and telling the portrait not to say “Mudblood.” Or Harry taunting Voldemort with Snape’s true loyalties and giving Riddle one last chance at remorse.

But you’ve got this other audience to account for… the audience that never reads the books and only sees the movies and that could care less about the intricacies of wandlore.

How do you make a movie that gives the book-fans enough of what they want to see and is still comprehensible for the movie-only fans? That’s the dilemma that the filmmakers were faced with. And they left every single one of those “dying-to see” moments out… yet managed to leave most fans feeling satisfied.

Let’s talk about a few of those choices…

The Mudblood Incident

One of the key complaints I’ve heard from one small corner of the fandom is that the film’s portrayal of “The Prince’s Tale” makes Severus Snape look like an innocent victim by failing to present the “Mudblood” incident or its aftermath.

Okay, I personally wanted to see this material on the big screen, but after giving it some thought, I realized that it presents a devil’s snare of potential difficulties. Here is what I wrote about it on the CoS forum:

I would have liked to see them include the “Mudblood” incident too, but in thinking it over, I realized that its inclusion is fraught with all sorts of potential difficulties for other characters – difficulties that I doubt the filmmakers wanted to unleash, particularly given the raw emotional power of Rickman’s overall performance.

As soon as Rickman’s Snape starts showing the depth of his pain, he’s got the audience in the palm of his hand. If the pain had started sooner, beneath the portrait of the Fat Lady [when Lily cut off their friendship], it could have swayed movie-only audience opinion in directions that the filmmakers would not have wanted – like against Lily, for instance. That wouldn’t be fair, since he used the word [Mudblood] on her, but film is an essentially emotional medium, and film audiences love redemption stories – especially when a character is in love. Film audiences generally want to see all but the most monstrous characters given a second chance after they’ve blown it in a big way.

In that context, the filmmakers probably made the right decision to cut the incident. They could not really tell which character(s) would get hurt the most by showing it, and filmmakers like to know exactly what audience impact will be.

There are additional problems with its inclusion as well. David Yates used a portion of SWM (“Snape’s Worst Memory”) in the OotP movie, but he did not incorporate the “Mudblood” incident. Adding it for DH2 would require re-shooting the earlier scene or working some digital magic to insert Lily into it. And that, of course, would mean casting a third actress to play Lily’s part – and getting Alec Hopkin (Teen Snape) back to utter the unforgivable word. (ETA NOTE: The additional material with a third Lily that was originally shot for OotP and then cut would not help since Harry is in the frame – in completely the wrong clothes and without all of the battle grime and gore that we see in TPT).

In addition, I think that the complaint that the exclusion of the Mudblood incident makes Snape look like an innocent victim is a product of very short-sighted thinking. What is most visually striking about the incident (and film is a visual medium) is watching James Potter and the Marauders launch an unprovoked attack on Severus Snape. In all likelihood, including the incident in the film would make Snape look even more like a victim.

Little James is puckishly cute as he runs through the halls tipping over his “victims'” school books.

This James, though, is hardly “cute” as he attempts to remove “Snivelly’s trousers”:

I would humbly submit that the filmmakers just didn’t want to go there with James, particularly given that they will later need to present him sympathetically in the Forest… and there’s really very little story to get the movie-only crowd to buy in to that sympathetic portrayal once the filmmakers re-unleash SWM. It’s hard enough already for many book readers to make the leap of faith into believing that James simply changed, and book readers have information that the movie-onlies don’t possess.

The choice the filmmakers made, then, was to make nobody look very much like the victim, and nobody look very much like the perpetrator. For purposes of the film, it was probably a wise choice.

Weasley Loss and Gain

Some book fans are angry at not seeing Fred die. And one big question many fans have asked is, “How the heck did Percy get there?”

That’s a good question! But there are actually other people whose return is a bit confusing – for instance Cho Chang (what’s she doing there in the Room of Requirement when she graduated the year before?) and Luna Lovegood (how’d she get there ahead of Harry, when she’d last been seen at Shell Cottage?). In the case of the Ravenclaw girls, my assumption is that they are there mainly to answer Harry’s question about the lost diadem. And yes, they are supposed to be there, even if the film never quite lets us know how they arrived.

Percy, though, has one of the book’s more dramatic entrances into the Room of Requirement, and we never see that drama in the film. I do think, though, that the filmmakers’ decision (while perhaps making Percy’s sudden appearance confusing for book fans ) actually makes matters less confusing for the general movie audience. Percy’s estrangement from his family has never become an overt plot point in the films. We do see Percy doing Ministry duties at cross-purposes to Harry and Dumbledore, but that’s about as far as that subplot goes. And let’s face it, without the subplot, many movie-only fans probably don’t really remember who Percy is anyway.

So, that nixes Percy’s big entrance because the big entrance would simply not make sense. And sorry, but if we nix Percy’s big entrance, we also nix witnessing Fred’s death. Yeah, we could still see Fred die, but we wouldn’t see it in the context of his welcoming Percy back into the family and later Percy throwing himself on Fred’s dead body.

If we remove Fred’s death from the context of Percy’s return, we may as well see Fred lying already dead in the Great Hall. And that is the choice the filmmakers made. Rather than go for overkill by showing Fred die on the screen and then show his family mourn, the filmmakers went the more subtle route of showing him already dead, surrounded by his family.

Whether we actually see Fred die or not, this scene still has tremendous emotional impact. I have not gotten past it once without breaking into sobs.

Dumbledore’s Backstory

King’s Cross is a big disappointment to many people. The wandlore, the backstory, Dumbledore’s remorse – all of it is missing.

Most of the essentials, though, were presented in DH1. And when the filmmakers decided (ACK!!!) to negate Grindelwald’s big moment of defiance and remorse, they couldn’t exactly go deeply into the Grindelwald plot in King’s Cross. In fact, I predicted in November that this would happen.

At least Ciaran Hinds’ fabulous performance – bringing to life Aberforth’s hundred years of bitterness – implicitly verifies the depth to which Albus Dumbledore had sunk in his youth. If we want to know more detail about the manner in which Albus’ choices sacrificed his sister’s life, we can always consult the books – or at least the nearest Potter fan. :)

Honestly, though, I did miss the King’s Cross wandlore. I suppose I experienced a bit of it vicariously through the interaction between Harry and Ollivander at Shell Cottage. But after all we’ve seen of the wand, would it truly have been too much information for the general movie audience if Harry had briefly discussed the Elder Wand with Dumbledore?

Well, at nearly 1500 words, this post has now gone on too long (thanks for making it this far with me!). So  I think I’ll devote my next DH2 post entirely to the element I missed the most… and why I think it made sense for the filmmakers to cut it.

Until then…

A Happy Potter Halloween

October 31 is without question the most important single calendar day in the Harry Potter series. Voldemort murdered Harry’s parents on October 31. And significant events occur on each of Harry’s first four Halloweens at Hogwarts.

Months ago, I wrote a post when the PS/SS re-read reached Harry Potter’s first Halloween Feast. Here’s a recap of that recap:

Halloween 1981. Probably the most important event in the series occurs on this Halloween – the murder of James and Lily Potter. With their murder, Harry Potter was orphaned, he acquired his scar (which is not merely a scar – but a piece of Voldemort’s soul), and as a result he became the “Chosen One” – the only one capable of destroying Voldemort.

But in addition to the impact on Harry, the deaths of Lily and James compelled a despairing Severus Snape to devote the remainder of his life to helping Dumbledore protect the Potter boy… and drove Wormtail to frame Harry’s godfather Sirius for the “murder of Peter Pettigrew” and a street filled with Muggles. Basically, this is the day that changed the lives of several of the major players.

Halloween 1991. Ten years after his parents’ murder, Harry spends his first Halloween at Hogwarts. At this point in the series, there’s no indication that Harry is aware that his parents’ deaths occurred on October 31. The Halloween Feast, though, is ruined by Quirrell’s famous “Troll in the Dungeons” announcement. Harry and Ron save Hermione from the troll, who has gone into the girl’s bathroom – thus starting the Trio’s friendship.

Meanwhile, in an attempt to keep an eye on Quirrell and head him off at the Philosopher’s Stone, Severus Snape goes into the corridor where Fluffy is guarding something. For his efforts, his Fluffy mangles his leg, awakening Harry’s suspicions of Snape.

Halloween 1992. Harry and the Trio are asked by Nearly Headless Nick, the Gryffindor ghost, to come to his 500th Death Day Party. Harry hears a voice (actually, the Basilisk speaking Parseltongue), and the Trio come face-to-face with the first attack by the “Heir of Slytherin.”

Halloween 1993. Harry is not allowed to go to the first Hogsmeade weekend. Instead, he has tea with Professor Lupin. When Snape brings Lupin his Wolfsbane Potion, Snape becomes suspicious of Lupin having Harry alone with him – fearing that Lupin is trying to hand Harry over to his school friend, the escaped “murderer” Sirius Black.

During the Halloween Feast, Sirius attacks the portrait of the Fat Lady, trying to force his way into Gryffindor Tower. In doing so, Sirius ends up wrongly confirming Snape’s suspicions about Lupin. Sirius’ actual co-conspirator is Hermione’s cat!

Halloween 1994. Harry’s name comes out of the Goblet of Fire, making him the fourth champion in the Triwizard Tournament.

In later years, Halloween is not so clearly delineated. We don’t know exactly what happens on Halloween during the Umbridge era. All we know is that during the weekend after Halloween, Harry and the Weasley twins get a “lifetime ban” from Quidditch. What happens in 1996 and 1997 is something of a mystery.

Harry finally gets a good look at Halloween 1981 on December 24/25, 1997 – after his ill-fated trip to Godric’s Hollow. Nagini’s bite, and Harry’s subsequent delirium, cause him to “see” the attack on through Voldemort’s eyes.

Have a Happy Potter Halloween!

Guest Post: Draco dormiens nunquam titillandusa

by AnnieLogic

Guest blogger AnnieLogic provides a nice counterbalance to my much less favorable review of Draco’s first encounter with Harry Potter…

Draco holds a distinction: he is the first notable character to attempt to befriend Harry, while being unaware of the celebrity beside him. In fact, Draco tries to make small talk with Harry, while the latter is wearing scruffy hand-me-down Muggle clothes and a very obvious patch-up job on his broken glasses. Draco does not appear to snub Harry from the initial outset for the sake of appearances.

Yet Draco’s conduct and manner of address – notably in regards to his parents and how he intends to get his own way – remind Harry strongly of his cousin. These memories of Dudley, complete with a conglomerate of negative feelings associated with them, mean that Harry may be projecting onto an unfamiliar person. It provides wriggle room for a misunderstanding early on.

Due to feeling increasingly stupid about his lack of knowledge concerning the Wizarding World, Harry becomes uncomfortable at Draco’s enthusiastic talk of Quidditch and Hogwarts’ Houses. Even Hagrid (who, unlike Draco, knew how much in the dark the Dursley’s had condemned Harry to be) exclaimed later:

“Blimey, Harry, I keep forgettin’ how little yeh know — not knowin’ about Quidditch!”

Later the reader sees further that students place Hogwarts Houses – as well as the much-loved Wizarding sport, Quidditch – at the forefront of their minds, so Draco’s choice of a conversational subject was seemingly friendly and no different than that of other future students, or indeed adults.

The downward spiral continues as Draco talks disdainfully of Hagrid. Understandably, and compassionately, Harry is defensive of his first wizarding friend – who showed him kindness, generosity and acceptance. This trait of Draco’s – to belittle and taunt those he believes to be his inferiors – is exhibited in various topics throughout the first year: topics concerning family, social status, intellect and skill, wealth and provisions:

“I do feel so sorry,” said Draco Malfoy, one Potions class, “for all those people who have to stay at Hogwarts for Christmas because they’re not wanted at home.”


“Would you mind moving out of the way?” came Malfoy’s cold drawl from behind them. “Are you trying to earn some extra money, Weasley? Hoping to be gamekeeper yourself when you leave Hogwarts, I suppose — that hut of Hagrid’s must seem like a palace compared to what your family’s used to.”


“See, there’s Potter, who’s got no parents, then there’s the Weasleys, who’ve got no money — you should be on the team, Longbottom, you’ve got no brains.”


“Longbottom, if brains were gold you’d be poorer than Weasley, and that’s saying something.”

When Harry replies shortly to Draco’s enquiry about his parents, and Draco responds “Oh sorry” (a fairly standard, civil way to reply to a complete stranger), Harry seems to take unnecessary offence, thinking Draco doesn’t sound sorry at all. However, the notion is swiftly dispelled when Draco adds, “But they were our kind, weren’t they?” as if to imply non-magical folk are of scant enough worth to mourn their loss.

Perhaps Draco could have enquired as to what happened, or where and with whom does Harry now live. However, in some circles this would probably be considered extremely intrusive questions to ask a stranger – particularly if the stranger turned abrupt, which would be a warning sign not to delve further into private matters. Re-enforcing this, the reader later observes Molly on the platform scolding the insensitivity of her children – first Ginny, for wanting go look at Harry as if he were a specimen in a zoo; secondly, Fred and George for proposing to ask Harry questions about the fateful circumstances under which he lost his parents.

Draco goes on to express an intolerant view of Muggleborns. Introduced here is another of Draco’s traits: being a constant mouthpiece for his parent’s views, particularly parroting and using the name of his father, Lucius Malfoy, and its weighty lineage.

In Tales of Beedle the Bard, the notes reveal Lucius Malfoy strove to get that very book, which contains Muggle-friendly teachings, banned from the Hogwarts curriculum. This fact allows the reader an insight into how tight a rein Lucius exerted on what Draco was exposed to in his first eleven years. It doesn’t justify or excuse the character, it does however give an idea of how Draco’s personality and morals were strictly influenced and moulded – showing why he chooses to ally and associate with those of desirable profile (in his opinion), who are subservient to his wishes, or who possess suitable beliefs.

The set up for Draco alienating and developing a rivalry with Harry, is repeated when Draco insults and tries to trump Ron, and a newly developed bond, despite it being a retaliation to a veiled snigger at his name.

Throughout the story, in a developing pattern of animosity, Draco slowly descends from snotty spoiled child further into the bully and antagonist role.

AnnieLogic authors the LiveJournal custos noctis.

The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore

“Don’t be a fool,” snarled the face. “Better save your own life and join me… or you’ll meet the same end as your parents…. “They died begging me for mercy….”

“LIAR!” Harry shouted suddenly.

Quirrell was walking backward at him, so that Voldemort could still see him. The evil face was now smiling.

“How touching…” it hissed. “I always value bravery…. Yes, boy, your parents were brave…. I killed your father first, and he put up a courageous fight… but your mother needn’t have died… she was trying to protect you…. Now give me the Stone, unless you want her to have died in vain.”

“NEVER!”

We expect the lie from Voldemort, just as we expect defiance from Harry. Voldemort lies in claiming…

  • That Harry’s parents died begging for mercy
  • That he values bravery
  • That Harry’s father put up a courageous fight

In actuality, Harry’s father rushed at Voldemort without a wand in his hand, Voldemort cast the curse, and…

James Potter fell like a marionette whose strings were cut….”

That’s it.

In context, fear has failed to motivate Harry to give Voldemort what he wants, so Voldemort reverts to flattery, reciting the key Gryffindor quality of bravery. And no doubt, James Potter bravely rushed at the Dark Lord. But put up a courageous fight? There was no fight.

Voldemort’s lie about Harry’s father, however, is ultimately less destructive than Albus Dumbledore’s. Once the Stone has been saved, Dumbledore promises Harry to answer whatever questions he can… without, of course, lying. But when Harry asks if it’s true that Snape hates him because he hated his father, Dumbledore replies:

“Well, they did rather detest each other. Not unlike yourself and Mr. Malfoy. And then, your father did something Snape could never forgive.”

“What?”

“He saved his life.”

That’s not exactly true. James Potter got cold feet on a Marauders prank that would have gotten Severus killed, and James intervened to stop it.

But Severus never believed that James’ primary intention was to save his life. He believed that James’ intent was merely to save himself and the other Marauders from getting expelled.
(And when we see what James did to Severus shortly afterward in the SWM, who can blame Severus for denying James any benevolent intent?)

But the question of James’ intent is not at the core of Dumbledore’s lie. It’s in his claim that Snape, in essence, was angry over owing James a life debt – a life debt that Severus never believed he owed. In framing Snape’s hatred in those terms, Dumbledore glosses over the true source of Snape’s fury: severe, public humiliation and abuse in SWM (what I would call a form of gang rape, frankly). And then, the worst of all possible humiliations: James winning Lily’s hand.

Yes, I know why Dumbledore might feel compelled to lie on this matter. Snape swore him to secrecy, admonishing Dumbledore never to reveal his [Snape’s] motives for protecting Harry – and putting Dumbledore in a bit of a bind. So it’s possible that Dumbledore invents an alternate scenario to explain Snape’s protection (i.e., attempting to retire the life debt) while at the same time honoring his word to Severus.

But the lie doesn’t help. It doesn’t really explain anything about Severus’ antipathy toward James to Harry. It merely helps to escalate the tension between Harry and Snape. And a couple of years later, Harry uses the lie when he throws his father’s life-saving “courage” right back in Snape’s face.

So my question is: How conscious is Dumbledore that he’s telling a lie? Has he, like Harry, created some ideal “James” in his head? Or is he deliberately misleading Harry in order to protect Severus’ secret? Or what?

I await your comments.