Sabethea (sabethea) wrote in hp_conversation,

A Bizarre Theory

Okay, I was just re-reading HP6, and I came across this description:

"the vulture-like countenance appeared round the corner... sunken cheeks, skin like parchment and long hooked nose illuminated unflatteringly" (p288 British edition. A few words missing.)

Now, is it just me, or does that sound very much like a description of Snape?

It's not. It's a description of Madam Pince, the librarian. And then I was thinking... Pince. Hmm, sounds rather like PRINCE, doesn't it? And what was Snape's mother's maiden name? Prince. Is there any relationship there, possibly?

I know, it's improbable. But if it turns out to be true, I suggested it, and if it doesn't, I never really believed it anyway :-P
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I was at the HP movie site a really long time ago and I remember seeing the actress who played Madame Pince's picture and my first reaction was "Whoa! Is that Snape's sister?" And then someone, not sure who, wrote an essay/fic/theory about Madame Pince being Snape's mom and that DD was keeping her in hiding.
There's no such thing as a new idea in fandom, is there?!?
I just wrote up a theory about Ravenclaw's artifact and someone commented with a "Hey! That's been figured out since August!"

Here via Snitch.

I just made a (then flocked, now open) post about this a few days ago, except, I was neither very sober nor very serious at the time, but, there you have it.

And I hadn't remembered that description of Madame Pince AT ALL at the time. I seriously think this is going to be Something. And I wonder if it intersects at ALL with the things JKR has said when people have asked her about any of the professors having family members, all of which I'm too lazy to look for right now.

I love the comments to that post :)

I was just freaked out by all of the Snape-type descriptions coming at once in a picture of Pince, but maybe JKR just likes those words...
Irma Pince = I'm a Prince

Either JKR loves anagrams, or perhaps "Irma" has some sort of past with "Tom" as well, shared tastes and all. ;)
ooh, i like it!
*Blinks* I never thought of that!

But I'm not sure how likely it is - I dunno, something just makes me doubt that. Still, always good for a fanfic!
As I say, I don't really believe myself. But it was a fascinating description.
That's a really interesting idea...

*goes off and ponders*
lol I love your icon
Oooh, interesting . . .

But wasn't the hooked-nose from Snape's father?
Yes, true. But don't the Weasleys get red hair from BOTH of their parents?
True, but in the canon description we have of Eileen Prince:

a skinny girl of around fifteen. She was not pretty; she looked simultaneously cross and sullen, with heavy brows and a long, pallid face. (p. 502, British edition)

there's no mention of her having a hook-nose. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but I don't think it does because otherwise Harry would have recognised a resemblance between her and Snape.


11 years ago

Yes, the nose *was* from Snape's father. The dark hair and eyes were from Eileen. And I do not for one nanosecond believe that Hermione, who spends more time in the library than anyone except Madam Pince, would not have recognized her instantly in the picture of Eileen Prince in her school days.

Cute idea, but I don't believe it. Alas.
Although I sympathise with the first two comments (and the last one), I'd have to disagree with the idea that she MUST be recognisable from her schooldays. Although I apparently look exactly the same as I did at 11 (I'm now 27), the same is definitely not true for my older sister, who would be distinctly unflattered if people recognised her from her school days as she is now considerably more attractive...
A nose like that, and a sallow complexion, wouldn't have changed. And again, Eileen didn't have the nose. Tobias did. Unless she had her nose broken, Pince isn't Eileen.


11 years ago

The Prince family is related to someone in Wizarding Britain. Perhaps the Pinces. Could the Princes be related to the Dumbledores?
*head explodes*
Since the Princes are an old pure-blood family then they must be related to the most or all of the old pure-blood families. The Malfoys, the Blacks, the Weasleys, the Crouches, etc. Dumbledore strikes me as being from an old family since he's refered to as a 'blood-traitor'.
He didn't appear to be on the Black tapestry, but then he'd have been burnt off very early on, I guess.
I've read the theory a few times before with the mentioning of a possible anagram a la Riddle/Voldemort making up her name Irma Pince. It's something that is at least logical in itself - unlike some of the more absurd exotic post HBP-theories.

However I personally don't find it very likely. Not the least because as much as I adore Snape and think it should be all about him as the most intriguing character Harry? What Harry? Potter who? Harry is the main focus of the series and with only one more book to go and the hunt for the horcruxes and Voldemort's destruction as fixed major plot points there's not that much space for many totally new relevations not directly related to the hero and his tasks. So I find the idea interesting but not very likely to be seen in canon....

And to play advocatus diabolus:
- Dumbledore is ALSO described in canon as the possessor of a "very long and crooked nose" and is tall like Snape
- McGonagall is tall, black-haired, with a stern face, "severe looking" and her eyes are several times called "beady" which is a term used for Snape's too and her nose is described in similar terms as his on occasion
All descriptions are taken directly from the books.

So - are we looking here at Severus Snape's secret alternate parents? Both hit as well, if not better, than Pince in physical (and in McG's case even temperamental!) similiarities! Are Snape's whole relations employed at Hogwarts under different names? ^_~

Crooked and hooked are not the same sort of noses, though (though it beats the Ron is Dumbledore theory that JKR shot down recently). And although I've seen one or two words that could be used to describe Snape used for other people, what unnerved me about that passage was the sheer NUMBER of phrases used.

I think that you've made the best point I've read yet when you say that there isn't room for that sort of revelation, though. Especially if the final book is basically not going to be set at Hogwarts (which I find exceptionally disappointing as a school story fan).

I do like the absurd theories, because they amuse me. I never believed mine and I can't imagine why I've been defending it against all-comers, apart from sheer devilry...
True, although I seem to recall ADs apendage is described in quite similar terms to Snape's on some occasions: I just went to cite the first descriptions of AD in PS and didn't want to go through ALL books before posting. Anyway I find McGonagall a lot closer in physical and temperamental similarities to Snape which I found always interesting. Of course I didn't think JKR wanted to hint a relationship with those.

You're right; some of the really really weird theories have a high entertainment factor simply due to the involved creativity which makes up for any lacking plausibility. ^_^ I find the possible setting away from school also not as attractive as 7th year Hogwarts.