T-minus 7 days

There are now only 7 days left until the release of the 7th Harry Potter film, a series in which 7’s feature prominently. In honor of this number, I’d like to share a little theory that I came up with (borrowing heavily from others) prior to the release of Deathly Hallows. It wasn’t proved right by DH, but it wasn’t proved wrong either, and I’m still rather fond of it.

The basic premise is this: all the collections of seven throughout the books are connected to each other and/or connected to other significant groups of seven such as the seven deadly sins, the seven astrological planets, seven chakras, etc. There were other theories floating around connecting Harry Potter to the groups of seven, but as far as I know, I’m the first to connect them to each other.

First, a list of sevens:

  • seven books
  • seven years at Hogwarts
  • seven floors at Hogwarts
  • seven Weasley children
  • seven Horcruxes (and accompanying victims and destroyers)
  • seven rooms in the Department of Mysteries
  • seven obstacles guarding the Sorcerer’s Stone
  • seven Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers
  • seven basilisk victims
  • seven magic subjects that Harry takes at Hogwarts
  • Harry is born in the seventh month
  • seven is called the most powerfully magical number

Now, it could be that the abundance of sevens could merely be because seven is, traditionally, an important or lucky number and that number is important to the plot, but I think that the fact that there are groups of sevens even when they have little to do with the plot and are not pointed out in the text (DoM rooms, subjects Harry takes, etc.) suggests that the number holds a significance beyond the text. hence, my theory. Here are the connections that I have made:

Book Obstacle DoM Room Weasley Sin of DADA Virtue Harry Learns
SS Fluffy love Ron greed prudence
CS devil’s snare thought Ginny sloth fortitude
PA keys time George pride charity
GF chess space Charlie envy hope
OP troll prophecy Fred lust temperance
HBP potions knowledge Bill gluttony justice
DH mirror death Percy wrath faith

So, this chart shows the obstacles guarding the Sorcerer’s Stone, the rooms in the Dept. of Mysteries, the Weasleys, and the DADA teachers are all symbolically connected to each book.  Just as example of how I’m thinking, I’ll explain the “Obstacle” column. In PS, Harry’s quest to obtain the Stone is largely about dodging obstacles, much like dodging a three-headed dog; in CoS, the diary acts as a “devil’s snare;” in PoA we get “keys” to freeing the prisoner; GoF’s conspiracy is in many ways a large-scale chess match between Voldemort and Dumbledore (and of course the Champions); OotP features the “troll” Umbridge; DH has a lot of mirror symbolism and is in many ways about Harry choosing things to have but not to use, thus revealing his heart. I admit that this is all rather speculative and arguable. Some things don’t quite fit—connecting “thought” to Chamber of Secrets, for example—but the other 6 in that column fit so well, there’s nowhere else for “thought” to go. Nevertheless, I think the pattern holds well enough that it can’t really be disregarded.

Next chart Smile:

Horcrux Chakra Horcrux Affects Horcrux Victim Sin of Horcrux Victim
Harry Brow (mind/insight) Harry James Potter pride
diary Root (family, life, acceptance of body) Ginny Myrtle lust
locket Heart (compassion, love) Ron tramp envy
cup Solar-Plexus (ego, logic, opinion) Hermione Hepzibah Smith greed
Nagini Crown (trust in higher self, soul) Neville Bertha Jorkins gluttony
diadem Throat (communication, responsibility, humanity) Draco/Crabbe Albanian peasant sloth
ring Sacral (sense of others, emopwerment) Dumbledore Tom Riddle Sr. wrath

This chart is really just a combination of Hilde Polis’ and Wagga Wagga Werewolf’s essays over at Scribbulus. Hilde Polis which argues that each of Voldemort’s Horcruxes represents one of the seven Chakras of Hinduism. Thus, as Voldemort chops off more and more of his soul, he becomes a less complete person on several levels. The Chakras are linked to each Horcrux largely on the basis of the qualities of the person that the horcrux most directly affects, but it is interesting that some of these also correspond to the location of each Chakra (Harry being the brow—where his scar is, the locket being the heart—over which the locket hangs, etc). Wagga Wagga Werewolf argues that each death used to create a Horcrux is connected to one of the seven deadly sins. I find it interesting that most of the sins are roughly either a lack of or an excess of their corresponding Chakra.

Basilisk Victim Sin Virtue
Myrtle (or possibly Ginny) greed faith
Justin sloth fortitude
Hermione pride prudence
Nick envy hope
Penelope lust temperance
Colin gluttony charity
Mrs. Norris wrath justice

I think this last chart is fairly self-explanatory. I’m not completely happy with it (connecting Justin to sloth and Myrtle to greed doesn’t seem to quite fit), but it works well enough.

I haven’t been able to make connections with the Horcrux destroyers or the classes Harry takes. I also haven’t been able to work in the astrological planets, but I’m fairly sure there have been a few essays written about that by others (I just haven’t read them yet).

Well, I’m sure you all find this endlessly fascinating, but what’s the point? Why does it matter? Just a few thoughts off the cuff: Seven is the symbol of perfection. Thus as Harry slowly conquers the seven deadly sins, as he learns the seven virtues, and as he moves through various obstacles he is slowly moving toward symbolic perfection. Voldemort, on the other hand, is moving to perfect evil.

Perhaps I’ll turn this all into a full-blown essay one day, but for now I’ll just give it up for your thoughts and wish you a happy countdown to the 19th.

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~ by ntertanedangel on November 12, 2010.

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