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Thread: Severus Snape - Part II

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  1. #1
    TyrannoLaurus
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    Severus Snape - Part II

    I've always wanted to start a thread on Severus Snape!

    (three years on the site and my ambition has been fulfilled ...)

    The thread reached 150 posts mid-discussion so here is what was last said:

    Quote Originally Posted by leahsm2
    Not meaning to lose anymore plot bunnies, either, but Snape got his speeches down with time, but the first year of his tenure into Hogwarts seems fascinating to me (trademark leahsm2 ) Anyway, I know, Earth to Leah

    During his first year as a teacher, he would have been twenty-two, and everyone is fresh off of the first war and reeling from major losses. Snape, being raw with the guilt of Lily's death, and a whisker away from Azkaban; not yet a double agent; would be a different animal entirely than he became, except he'd be more eager to prove himself and understand his charges more intrinsically because he had been one so recently. Would he be even more harsh in the beginning do you think, or be feeling his way through, eventually becoming who he needed to be? I think it could go either way or, I wouldn't be asking for opinions

    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    Well, actually, he became a double agent when he found out Lily was targeted, and he started teaching apparently about two months before the Potters were killed.

    However, I agree that fresh out of Hogwarts Snape is a lot different than jaded spy who lost the love of his life Snape.

    I think something you're not considering which bears STRONG consideration is this: based on his birthdate of January 1960, his first year at Hogwarts would have been September 1971. He would have left ("graduated") Hogwarts in June 1978. "Snape's Worst Memory", his fifth year, would have happened in June 1976, and Severus started teaching in September 1981, meaning that some of the students who saw Severus being routinely humiliated by MWPP would have then become Snape's students, and of those who didn't witness it, they'd have heard it from those other students who did see it, or their family members who did. I imagine it would have made teaching kind of difficult.

    But you have to admit, both his opening Potions and his opening Defence speeches were pretty poetic. The guy's a serious academic and a bookwork that put Hermione Granger to shame.

    Remember, too, he took the position at Hogwarts under the Dark Lord's orders. So he probably put a great deal of thought into that opening Potions speech, and by the time the tradition had been established, he'd thought a lot about his Defence speech, too.

    I'd say Severus was very brave to take that post at such a young age. When I was sixteen to eighteen I became very aware that the 'student teachers' of my school were only about five years older than me, and very inexperienced, and it was very easy to take advantage of that. I think Severus' only way of ensuring that he wasn't laughed at or disrespected by his students was by being the dire, strict and intolerable teacher we knew him from Harry's time. Obviously by then he had dealt with an awful lot in a very short space of time - Lily's death, Voldemort's height of power etc - and so a classroom full of students might not have been as intimidating for him. He probably used them to vent out the cruelty and bitterness he felt, because they were easy targets, and sadly that attitude to teaching never changed.

  2. #2
    leahsm2
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    I keep thinking that he came in the following year when Dumbledore vouched for him, but your way makes infinite more sense! Thanks!

  3. #3
    XhayleeXblackX
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    Okay, so I've been reading the debate in the Sirius thread, and I thought my views/comments belong more so here because I am more or less taking Severus' side, and he was kind of being ganged up on a bit, okay a lot.

    Severus Snape, first and foremost, is a man that has delt with more than almost any character in the series, Harry being one of my exceptions. He has more will power than half the characters put together, more intelligence, and he isn't the emotionless, cruel Death Eater that most view him as. This is the man that was able to fool the Dark Lord until the very end! Voldemort never realised his true allegience, which was not to any one but Lily. This is the man that Harry named his son after and considered one of the bravest men he ever knew, and he utterly loathed Severus Snape.

    The fact that Snape never forgave Sirius for a boyhood prank is completely valid, in my opinion. Sirius was prepared for Snape to die, at the very least for him to be bitten and infected by Remus. Sirius showed no remorse for this action toward Severus, and if he did feel sorry about any part of it, it would be for Remus's sake. James was the man about it, remember; not Sirius.

    Why should he forgive someone who tried to kill him? Sirius taunts Severus throughout his life, and vise versa. Sirius tormented Severus in school because he could; as far as we know, they started it all that day on the train. Severus didn't invite them to torment him. And no one forgives people for endless humiliation and torment in front of an entire school for seven years. It just doesn't happen unless there is reconsiliation on both sides, and that would never happen between Severus and Sirius. And even then there would still be resentful feelings and hatred.

    Severus has every right to be bitter and unforgiving. He was not being a child about it. Sirius invited his taunting as much as he dished it out. Severus realised his wrongs with Lily. He switched sides, and vowed to protect Lily's son, no matter how much he loathed the boy and how much he was like his father. Yes, he treated Harry rather unexcusably, but he saved his life numerous times. Something even Sirius would be thankful for, though he would never admit it.

    Not to mention that Severus associates Lily with James, Sirius, Remus, and Peter. Imagine how it must have felt to have the man that Lily believed her friend, whom betrayed her whereabouts and brought on her death, in your home. Severus felt responsible enough for her death, can you imagine how much he had to have disliked Wormtail even more so than when they were in school? He probably wanted some sort of revenge for Lily against Peter, the same as Sirius wanted for James. (Okay that really has nothing to do with my point but it was a point I wanted to make. In this way, they are alike in a very, very streched sense.)

    And that is my rather opinionated view on the matter, which may not make a whole lot of sense. I'll say it again that I love Sirius in the books and I disliked Severus until Half Blood Prince, I know view him as one of the best characters of the series.

    -Haylee

  4. #4
    leahsm2
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    So. When Snape peers into the glech, that is the final product of most of his students potions endeavors, his clearing out of the cauldron would be considered Charmwork, not a Transfiguration. He looks at it, it enrages him, he takes a breath and sends it to the hinterlands . . . feels Transfigurationy to me . But I'm usually off the beam!

  5. #5
    XhayleeXblackX
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    Yes, Leah, my dear, I would consider that more Charm work, as he would probably just be banishing it or disposing of it, not transfiguring it exactly. *Squishes her Slytherin buddy*

    EDIT: OotP proved me wrong, as you know already, dear.

    I agree with CM though (I think this was mentioned in the other thread by her), I don't think Severus would be very good at Transfiguration. One, no one is perfect at everything. Hermione may be good at school work and she is quite the witch, but she isn't great at everything and she has a tendency to lose her head at times, where Snape remains for the most part completely collected. So Severus has to have some weakness within his magical abilities. He would of course be able to perform well, but not to the extent that Sirius and James did.

    I also think that it would be a nice addition into the hatred between Severus and James and Sirius because it would be one more thing that they were good at that he wasn't. The thing I struggle to remember though, is that all three were exceptionally smart, along with Lily. McGonagall says this in PoA that Sirius and James where two of the brighest Hogwarts had, so that is probably something that they rivaled over as well. Who could get better marks. Especially between Severus and James because they would be able to use that to get Lily to notice them. *bleh*

    /rambling.

    Gosh, I think reading so many of CM's Snape defences and character explainations and logical backing has corrupted me. I'm finding myself becoming quite the Severus Snape supporter. But I will never like Lily and their relationship, ever.

    -Haylee

  6. #6
    leahsm2
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    Quote Originally Posted by XhayleeXblackX
    Gosh, I think reading so many of CM's Snape defences and character explainations and logical backing has corrupted me. I'm finding myself becoming quite the Severus Snape supporter. But I will never like Lily and their relationship, ever.

    -Haylee
    Lily, sadly, "outgrew" him, in that she was able to go on to other stages of growing up, and he didn't understand that. And why should he, as he went on to other "friendships" himself, which further alienated her. It happens all the time to best friends while you grow and change interests!

    Edit:

    Quote Originally Posted by cmwinters
    I think something you're not considering which bears STRONG consideration is this: based on his birthdate of January 1960, his first year at Hogwarts would have been September 1971. He would have left ("graduated") Hogwarts in June 1978. "Snape's Worst Memory", his fifth year, would have happened in June 1976, and Severus started teaching in September 1981, meaning that some of the students who saw Severus being routinely humiliated by MWPP would have then become Snape's students, and of those who didn't witness it, they'd have heard it from those other students who did see it, or their family members who did. I imagine it would have made teaching kind of difficult.
    Double edged sword, in that he was also accumulating Slytherin friends who doubtless kept order among the younger ones, and he seemed to grow in prestige with in his own house, so the Slytherins would already be somewhat cowed at the sight of him, I'm sure!

  7. #7
    cmwinters
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    Quote Originally Posted by XhayleeXblackX
    Severus Snape, first and foremost, is a man that has delt with more than almost any character in the series, Harry being one of my exceptions. He has more will power than half the characters put together, more intelligence, and he isn't the emotionless, cruel Death Eater that most view him as.
    Whatever else Severus Snape is, it is not "emotionless". He feels emotions; in fact, sometimes he feels them too deeply. I think that is why he denigrates others "fools who wear their heart on their sleeves" (or whatever other comment he makes), because to him, emotions are a weakness.

    If we postulate (and although I absolutely despise this theory, but it appears to be borne out in canon) that Tobias was abusive, that Severus feeling this is directly related to Tobias losing control of himself. When Snape bursts into the Shrieking Shack, he is exactly that . . . losing control of himself, and I'm quite certain he hated it later.

    Losing his temper at Lily cost him their relationship, joining the Death Eaters (which I think was an INTENSELY emotionally charged decision for Severus) didn't work out all that well for him, going to Dumbledore and begging for mercy turned him into a puppet of yet another person who had no regard for him, and certainly losing his cool at the Trio, Black & Lupin in the Shack didn't work out all that well. The only person who Severus ever loved, and the only person who ever loved him, effectively abandoned him and flaunted choosing his most hated enemy in his face. Now, Severus was very very at fault for that (he had no business saying what he said to Lily, but as clear as it is that she was just begging for an excuse to ditch him, it's equally clear he had his priorities wrong). But even if you take blood prejudice and racial epithets out of the equation ENTIRELY, you have the very real problem that Lily was not able to provide Severus what he needed, and it really isn't her fault or his. In his eyes, he needed ti be needed, he needed to be wanted, he needed to be powerful, and he needed control (of himself, of his situation, etc).

    The bottom line (and God I hate that "buzzword", my coworker uses it all the time, and NEVER accurately), is that Lily needed a childhood buddy even a best friend and she needed a friend who was magical. At the very base, Severus met all those requirements and COULD have fulfilled that position admirably. However, what SEVERUS needed out of that relationship was so, so much more than Lily was EVER going to be capable of providing him, at least before her mid-thirties, possibly her mid-fifties.

    And it's not her fault or his fault. A child is never going to completely get over his or her parents not loving him (or her). And that's not Severus' fault, but it's certainly not Lily's responsibility to "fix", nor do I believe she was capable of it at any time in her life.

    When you consider that the only reference for normal that Severus ever had at any time in his miserable life was Lily, I think you can realise what a disasterous relationship it would have been if they had run off into rainbows and gotten married. Severus simply doesn't have the mastery of his deeply felt emotions when he's under stress, and he's got a very short fuse. He'd have ended up being really controlling of Lily and assuming Lily had stood for it, she'd have withered away. He'd have hated hurting her, and it would have made him more miserable, and it would have been a vicious cycle.

    As for Lily running straight to James . . . well, that's a textbook rebound relationship if I ever saw one.

  8. #8
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Equinox Chick's Avatar
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    Okay fanning the flames of a debate I have no hope of winning but....

    As for Lily running straight to James . . . well, that's a textbook rebound relationship if I ever saw one
    They got together in Year 7 that's a blooming long time between relationships to embark on a rebound! If Lily had a 'rebound relationship' it would have been straight away.

    but as clear as it is that she was just begging for an excuse to ditch him,
    I'm interested why you say this- I'm not disputing it but I'd like your reasoning. To me Lily had made every excuse for him to her friends ("None of the others can understand why I even talk to you" is the quote I think) and this was the final straw.

    Finally and I know I'm going to get intellectually slaughtered here Sirius tells the Trio in GOF that Snape knew more curses when he started Hogwarts than most of the Year 7's. I totally agree that James and Sirius picked on him to start with and it escalated to bullying , but Snape used to retaliate- and thank God for that! Dumbledore compares James/Snape to Harry/Draco (probably soft peddling I admit). Cursing and hexing people isn't just confined to James/Sirius/Snape era. We see it countless times in Harry's time at school- especially before Quidditch matches (Angelina gets furry ears or something).

    In the end I'll always be a Marauder fan. I totally understand Snape's motivations and his hatred of them but I can't forgive his attitude to Harry, Ron, Hermione and Neville. It's his treatment of Neville that upsets me the most. If Neville had been 'the chosen one' Snape would never have changed sides.
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  9. #9
    cmwinters
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    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick
    I'm interested why you say this- I'm not disputing it but I'd like your reasoning. To me Lily had made every excuse for him to her friends ("None of the others can understand why I even talk to you" is the quote I think) and this was the final straw.
    So . . . what was Severus, if not her friend? It's okay for your friends to say about some other friend of yours "we don't like so-and-so, so you should stop talking to him/her?" And effectively force you to stop talking to them? Because that's basically what happened.

    There's no evidence that Severus mistreated Lily other than that one time, so they were trying to get her to stop talking to him because he was ugly, unkempt, unpopular and "weird". Granted, he had absolutely under no circumstances any business saying that to her. And if he really felt that way about Muggleborns (which I think it's fairly clear he didn't really think that), he shouldn't have been associating with her in the first place.

    Again, this gets back to Severus needing different things than Lily did, and being able to provide different things than the other needed. The brutal fact of the matter is, she never said to him, "Severus, you are going places I can't follow" or "you need to choose between them (the Death Eaters) and me", because (despite what Jo says) there's no reason to believe Lily ever would have chosen Severus over her friends.

    I try very, very hard to not hate Lily, but sometimes it is very, very difficult.

    The sad bottom line is, by the time he called her Mudblood (indeed, BEFORE he did so), she was itching for a reason to not be his friend any more, whether she knew it or not. Because, had she REALLY WANTED TO KEEP HIM, she would have said then "it's them or me". But it seems like her (other) friends sure did, and she was already done with him before the word ever left his mouth.

    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick
    Finally and I know I'm going to get intellectually slaughtered here Sirius tells the Trio in GOF that Snape knew more curses when he started Hogwarts than most of the Year 7's.
    That's one of the many things that make no sense about Snape. Clearly, at ten, he didn't have a wand (or he'd have been using it). Clearly, at ten, (or even maybe eleven if they'd already gotten their letters, and it seemed like they had), he didn't have sufficient control over his magic to control that branch from hitting Petunia on the head (otherwise, he would have looked smug, and not scared).

    The thing about the curses that some of those seventh years knew, is that they required power and control. Where, between getting his wand in like, maybe July and August, did he have the time to master basic magic skills in the first place, *AND* learn enough Dark magic to be better than people who were darting off at the first available opportunity to join the Dark Lord (some, undoubtedly, already had).

    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick
    I totally agree that James and Sirius picked on him to start with and it escalated to bullying , but Snape used to retaliate- and thank God for that! Dumbledore compares James/Snape to Harry/Draco (probably soft peddling I admit). Cursing and hexing people isn't just confined to James/Sirius/Snape era. We see it countless times in Harry's time at school- especially before Quidditch matches (Angelina gets furry ears or something).
    I am completely failing to see your point here. They started it, he retaliated, it happens, so it's okay?

    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick
    In the end I'll always be a Marauder fan. I totally understand Snape's motivations and his hatred of them but I can't forgive his attitude to Harry, Ron, Hermione and Neville. It's his treatment of Neville that upsets me the most. If Neville had been 'the chosen one' Snape would never have changed sides.
    I absolutely despise Ronald Weasley and I think that Ron is just about everything Snape hates: lazy, whiny, a goof-off, disrespectful and unmotivated. So unsurprisingly I'm not seeing eye to eye with you on Snape's reaction toward him. I can't imagine what Snape must've felt for the twins, who clearly mastered the material, but goofed off so much. They must've driven Snape completely round the twist, and that wasn't a far trip in the first place!

    I think that to an extent, Harry invited some harassment from Snape, but SNAPE STARTED IT before Harry had any idea who he was. It's not like Severus was ever polite to Harry in the first place. However, I do think that had he been stern the way McGonagall is and not mollycoddled him, I do think Harry eventually would have done something to set Snape off (like, refusing to apply himself at his homework, which Harry does all the time, or violating Snape's privacy, which is a bit of a problem that Harry has).

    That having been said, it ABSOLUTELY DOES NOT IN ANY WAY excuse Snape's behaviour towards Harry. His comments to Hermione have been flat cruel, and he's been a complete monster to Neville. You know, even if you go the route that Snape was trying to teach Neville a lesson that Death Eaters are mean or whatever, I still think he was out of line. Way, way, way out of line. And Dumbledore NEEDED to say something.

  10. #10
    SlthrngNbltyWrtnINnk
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    Severus Snape

    Okay, in my story, I'm currently on chapter 3 and Severus is in the first year. It's the first day of classes and he's in potions, trying to take notes, but he has no ink in his ink bottle. The girl beside him is annoyed by it so she pushes her ink his way, telling him t use it because he's annoying her. Should he take her up on the offer or just not take the notes?

    How do you think an eleven year old Snape would react to things and how easily do you think a girl would be able to be his friend?

    Thanks.
    -SlthrngNbltyWrtnINnk

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