(WARNING! THIS CONTAINS SPOILERS IN CASE YOU HAVEN’T READ THE BOOKS)
1. Irma Pince is Snape’s mother
What it says: Irma Pince, the Hogwarts librarian, is in fact Snape’s mother in disguise.
What proof do we have?:
- Irm a Pince=Im a Prince
- From the moment that Snape joined Dumbledore, there was always the possibility of you-know-who finding out that he was a spy. Snape would have wanted to protect his mother from the death eaters and no-one would have suspected that Snape’s mother was actually the Hogwarts librarian.
- In “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince”, Dumbledore says “Come over to the right side, Draco, and we can hide you more completely than you can possibly imagine. What is more, I can send members of the Order to your mother tonight to hide her likewise.” He could have done exactly the same thing with Snape’s mother.
- Snape is always out and about the castle at night. Harry and Ron are almost discovered by him when sneaking to Hagrid’s hut in the second book, he’s there the night Harry takes the golden egg for a bath and pretty much every other time that Harry sneaks out late at night. What is he doing? Well, he could be visiting Eileen Prince.
- Eileen and Irma’s descriptions match. Eileen Prince is described as a “skinny girl”, who “looked simultaneously cross and sullen” and as a “thin, sallow-faced, sour-looking woman who greatly resembled” Snape. Irma Pince is a “thin, irritable woman who looked like an underfed vulture”.
- Irma Pince greatly resembles Snape! Harry mentions “her sunken cheeks, her skin like parchment, and her long hooked nose”.
- There is a scene in “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” where Madam Pince snatches Snape’s potion book from Harry and gets quite aggressive. She tells him off for writing in a book and Harry and Hermione joke about her overreacting. However, her reaction would make sense if she recognized the book and knew that it was Snape’s (or maybe even her own).
- In “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”, she bewitches books and inkpots to hit him. She says it’s because he was eating chocolate in the library, but this is right after he enters Snape’s memories in the pensieve.
- It would add a further reason for why Dumbledore fully trusted Snape.
- At Dumbledore’s funeral, she is wearing a “thick black veil that fell to her knees”. Could that be a disguise?
Can it be true?: It could. There is always the question of why J. K. Rowling wouldn’t have mentioned it, but maybe it just never fit into the books just like Dean Thomas’ backstory.
Is it any good?: While this theory might seem silly at first, if you dive into it, it just goes deeper and deeper and actually seems quite plausible. It also gives Irma Pince a lot more depth.
Rating out of 10: 8.5
2. Herpo the Foul Is Still Alive
What it says: Herpo the Foul, a dark wizard famous for having bred the first Basilisk and created the first horcrux, is still alive.
What proof do we have?: There isn’t really specific proof for this, more the fact that we never hear of anyone having destroyed Herpo’s horcrux, which means that he could very much still be alive.
Can it be true?: Oui.
Is it any good?: My favourite thing about this theory is thinking about what form Herpo would have if he were still alive. Would he have a bodiless form like you-know-who in Albania? If he had kept his body or found some way of getting one, he could very well be one of the characters we already know. Maybe he went on to become Salazar Slytherin or Slughorn or another character.
Rating out of 10: 6
3. Harry Meeting the Weasleys at King’s Cross Was a Set-Up
What it says: Dumbledore and Mrs. Weasley planned for Harry to meet the Weasleys when he went to King’s Cross in his first year.
What proof do we have?:
- We know that Dumbledore manipulated a lot of events in Harry’s life, but we never find out to what extent he did that. Did he plan for Harry to encounter all the obstacles to reach the philosopher’s stone? How much of the plot of the seventh book was planned beforehand? Compared to everything else, making plans for Harry to meet a family who would take care of him seems small and easy.
- Dumbledore had plenty of motives: The Weasleys could take care of Harry and ensure his well-being, especially during the holidays when he was out of Dumbledore’s sight and Harry would be ensured a loyal friend to join his quests.
- The Weasleys would have wanted it too. Some people think that Dumbledore paid Mrs. Weasley, I don’t think she would have said no to taking care of an orphan in need.
- Harry seems to have been the only first year who wasn’t told how to find Platform 9 ¾.
- “ “Now, what’s the platform number?” said the boys’ mother. “Nine and three-quarters!” piped a small girl. “ Whyever would Molly, who had gone to Hogwarts herself, have to ask what the platform number was? But it would fit right into this theory-she wanted Harry to overhear her mentioning Platform 9 ¾.
- Harry runs into the Weasleys THRICE at Platform 9 ¾. The first time is when he’s wondering how to get on the platform, the next is a couple of minutes later when he needs help with his trunk and Fred and George suddenly appear, the third is when Ron asks if he can join him in his compartment. It’s all a bit much to just be a coincidence.
Can it be true?: It can. We know that Dumbledore has orchestrated events many times in the books.
Is it any good?: Every book needs some way of introducing a protagonist to his or her allies. Harry meeting the Weasleys at Kings Cross is probably just a necessary plot device, which, even though it is unlikely, is definitely still possible. Saying that Dumbledore orchestrated it makes it a lot more likely and makes the story seem more realistic.
Rating out of 10: 7
4. Dumbledore Hired Lupin to Help Protect the Castle from Sirius Black
What it says: The main reason why Dumbledore hired Lupin to teach Defence Against the Dark Arts was so that he could keep an eye out for Sirius.
What proof do we have?:
- Of all of the wizarding community alive at the start of the third book, Lupin probably knew Sirius best. They were close friends at school and he would have known a lot about his magic capabilities, personality and weaknesses.
- The timing is quite suspicious. Dumbledore had hired a new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher each year ever since he had denied you-know-who the post and he only thought to hire Lupin, who had been unemployed for over eleven years, after Sirius Black escaped from Azkaban.
- A lot of people have been questioning why Lupin took the Hogwarts Express to get to the castle when he could have also apparated to Hogsmeade and walked. It would make more sense if Dumbledore had asked him to take it and to watch out for the students, especially Harry.
- Lupin left Hogwarts once Sirius was no longer a threat.
- Dumbledore did exactly the same thing a year later when he hired Moody to keep an eye of Karkaroff
- In general, it seems like the Defence Against the Dark Arts professors’ duties extend beyond teaching. We see Quirrell helping the other teachers to search for the troll and McGonagall sends Lockhart to search for Ginny.
Can it be true?: It could.
Is it any good?: It makes a lot of sense and would explain why Lupin felt so guilty about not telling Dumbledore that Sirius was an animagus.
Rating out of 10: 7.5
5. Bellatrix Wasn’t Aiming to Kill Sirius
Harry saw Sirius duck Bellatrix’s jet of red light: He was laughing at her. “Come on, you can do better than that!” he yelled, his voice echoing around the cavernous room.
The second jet of light hit him squarely on the chest.
What it says: Bellatrix was actually trying to stun Sirius-he only died because he fell through the veil.
What proof do we have?:
- The books make it clear that the killing curse causes a jet of green light. Red light or sparks can be caused by a number of spells, most notable Stupefy.
- Bellatrix was very family- and blood-conscious. Would she have wanted to kill the last remaining Black?
Can it be true?: It could. People might argue that Bellatrix was intentionally trying to push Sirius into the archway, but why wouldn’t she have simply used the killing curse, which she uses on many other occasions?
Is it any good?: This theory doesn’t necessarily add a lot to the story, but it makes Bellatrix’s murder seem a lot less brutal.
Rating out of 10: 8 and a third
Check out my other list of Harry Potter theories!
Also, I really want to collect every possible Harry Potter theory from all over the Internet and put them together in one Masterlist.
You can help by:
- Posting your favourite Harry Potter theory in the comments below! I’ll credit you if I end up using it 🙂
- Sharing this on Facebook, Twitter, WordPress and everywhere else!
Thanks for reading ❤ ~Lilly
- Irma Pince is Snape’s Mother: Bscorp and Pam2002 from cosforums
- Herpo the Foul Is Still Alive: MrSleepyHead from cosforums, thank you to Drafo7 for suggesting it!
- Harry Meeting the Weasleys at King’s Cross Was a Set-Up: unclear/multiple sources, thank you to Dragon_Tamer166 for suggesting it!
- Dumbledore Hired Lupin to Help Protect the Castle from Sirius Black: my own
- Bellatrix Wasn’t Aiming to Kill Sirius: my own
Irma Pince and Snape: harrypotter.wikia
Herpo the Foul: hp-lexicon
The Weasleys at King’s Cross: harrypotter.wikia
Lupin and Sirius: quora
Sirius and Bellatrix: fanpop
These images belong to Warner Bros and are used under the fair use provision of copyright law.