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Harry Potter Fans Are Losing It After Discovering The Secret Meaning Behind Snape's First Lines

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Harry Potter Fans Are Losing It After Discovering The Secret Meaning Behind Snape's First Lines

Just as you think you know everything you possibly could know about the Harry Potter universe, it turns out there's yet more hidden context lurking beneath the surface.

JK Rowling's carefully crafted wizarding world is famous for its double-meanings and teasing secrets - but there's one line from the very start of the franchise which explains a major plot point that only comes to light in the final book of the series.

You can see a clip below.

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Harry Potter fans will know that Professor Snape's first words to Harry in 1997's Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone relate to quite the tricky Potions question, which young Muggle-raised Harry doesn't have a scoobies about.

"Potter!" Severus barks. "What would I get if I add powdered root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?"

Naturally, as Hermione's hand flies up in the air, Harry is left dumb-founded - and his "insolence" sees points docked from Gryffindor.

Poor Harry doesn't know the answer to Snape's loaded question (Credit: Warner Bros)
Poor Harry doesn't know the answer to Snape's loaded question (Credit: Warner Bros)
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However, one savvy Harry Potter fan has since connected the dots about the question, and has now theorised it's a distinct clue about Snape's unrequited love for Harry's mother, Lily Potter.

Posting on Twitter, the fan who goes by the Twitter handle @Akhtxr_Rehxn shared a fan theory looking at Victorian Flower Language (which you can read a comprehensive list of meanings here).


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Asphodel is a type of lily, which was often used as a symbol of death 'remembered beyond the tomb', while wormwood is thought to symbolise 'absence' and 'bitter regrets'.

Piece that together, and you have Snape basically saying he regrets Lily's death, and feels her absence - pointing towards his then-unknown feelings for Lily.

Snape loved Harry Potter's mother, Lily (Credit: Warner Bros)
Snape loved Harry Potter's mother, Lily (Credit: Warner Bros)
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That's not all, though, with JK Rowling having poured yet more thought into these simple few lines.

Real Potterheads will know asphodel and wormwood combined make a sleeping potion 'so powerful it is known as the Draught of Living Death.'

Is this Snape trying to tell us that the ingredients which his regret over Lily's fate together reflect what his life is now - like "a living death?"

Our minds our blown...and our hearts are broken.

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Snape tenderly cradles Lily's body after she is murdered (Credit: Warner Bros)
Snape tenderly cradles Lily's body after she is murdered (Credit: Warner Bros)

There's more, too, if you can handle it...

Asphodel was previously thought to cure snake bites - which again could point to Lord Voldemort, who killed Harry's parents and attempted to murder Harry in order to fulfil a prophecy.

We only see the full extent of how much Snape loved Lily in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, where the dying Professor shared his memories with Harry.

But if we had really been paying attention to the subtext of the novels, we may have figured out Snape's secret long before the emotional climax.

Merlin's beard! You just can't deny how rich the Harry Potter world is.

Featured Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Topics: Harry Potter, Film News, Entertainment News, TV & Film

Kimberley Bond
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