The way that Rowling describes it, it seems that the Sorting Hat is capable of doing some sort of legilemency. I would assume that it makes its decisions based on more subtle criteria than it sings about.
I think it would be fun to see some big interhouse drama play out from the point of view of a Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw.
D’oh! Of course, Peter and Nevillie are both in Hufflepuff. I’ll get me coat… Pretty sure Lockhart’s house was pinned down somewhere, but I don’t remember where. I wouldn’t really call Cho a “bad” Ravenclaw… I think pretty much all her actions were understandable, for a grieving teenager. Marietta… eh. I’m not so sure I would count her as bad, per se.
That’s the one I was thinking of. Very brief, but to be fair to Harry the scenes Snape gets to see are described equally quickly. In addition, I remember at one point there’s a scene in one of the earlier books (before Legilimency is mentioned) where Harry is staring at the back of another person’s head in the middle of an exam, wishing he knew what they were writing, and manages to get snippets of thought through (though he doesn’t recognise it as such).
During one of the occlumency lessons, Harry uses a charm to reflect Snape’s attack. The effect was apparently similar to Harry using legilimancy himself, and gave him a glimpse of Snape’s memories. He saw Snape as a small boy, crying in the corner as a man yelled at a cowering woman (maybe his mother and father, but there may problems with that idea). I think there was also one of a young Snape having trouble with a broomstick.
Well, I haven’t re-read HBP lately, but as I recall, Snape’s mother was a witch (a fairly formidable one, I believe) and his father was a muggle, right? Given the disparity in personal power between them, why would she be cowering from him? She could have swatted him like a fly, or bent him to her will with potions, so why would she put up with that?
Of course, the scene definitely sounds like a classic abusive husband/father scenario, so I could be inventing problems where none exist, or there could be logical reasons why my objections don’t apply. Or she could have just been timid by nature, and not thought to strike back (at least not by that point in Snape’s life).
I suspect we’ll find out a bit more about Snape soon.
If it was long-term abuse, the lack of fighting back may be as much a psychological thing as a power thing. Abusive people can make spouses feel like nothing, even if they do have power to leave or fight back. And we do have an HP reference - Merope, who lost her powers (or at least had them stunted) from long periods of abuse by her father and brother.
Okay. I think of her as someone without a very forceful personality, based on the description of her photograph in HBP, and the fact that her social triumph is being the captain of the Gobstones Club. Shallow of me, I know. Anyway, the abused wife characterization fits my preconceived notions quite nicely, and I think I’ll stick with it.
I think that the Sorting Hat’s criterion for sorting is very simple: It puts people in the house where they want to be in. Only when a person is undecided between two or more houses does the Hat judge any further, based on the person’s temperment and how full the Houses are otherwise. You’ll notice that, in every instance in the books where someone expresses a preference before being sorted, that’s the house they end up in.
The only preference Harry expressed was “Not Slytherin”, and the Hat respected that preference. From what it could see of his temperment, it found him a better match for Griffindor than for Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw, so that’s where it put him.
Revenant-Neville is not a Hufflepuff-he’s a Griffyndor.
I don’t think Harry is skilled enough in occulems (however it’s spelled). He cannot control his emotions (something Snape DID try to teach him, in a very Snape like way). Snape even taunts Harry at the end of book 6 regarding this inability. I think Harry’s going to have to grow up a whole lot in order for him to meet Voldemort on equal ground in that area. Which leads me to believe that Harry will not have to use this skill to win. Harry’s assets are his ability to love, his courage and his compassion. IOW, it will be his character that wins the day, not his magical skills.
Do you know something I don’t? I know that people have been speculating this since the fate of the school is so open-ended at the end of Half-Blood Prince, but I am convinced that they will be going back to school in Year 7 and doing their horcrux hunting using resources inside the school or on school breaks.
Since Harry announced that he wasn’t coming back to Hogwarts at the end of book 6, I sorta assumed that he wasn’t. That doesn’t mean that most of the action wont’ take place there–I think the final scene will most likely take place in Hogwarts, but Harry, Hermione and Ron won’t be students. (there’s no guarantee that the school will even be open for learning).
If we’re speculating about book 7 in general, any thoughts about who will be the next DADA professor? I have a suspicion that it will be someone from Durmstrang, perhaps Viktor Krum. And if Prof. McGonnigle ascends to the post of headmistress, then there may be a new Transfiguration professor, as well - perhaps someone from Beauxbatons? Fleur seems less likely than Viktor, but not out of the question. Bringing in professors from other schools seems like it would fit well with the “we all work together” theme that Rowling has been emphasizing.