I shall miss his friendship more than I can say, but my loss is as nothing compared to the Wizarding world’s. That he was the most inspiring and the best loved of all Hogwarts headmasters cannot be in question. He died as he lived, working always for the greater good and, to his last hour, as willing to stretch out a hand to a small boy with dragon pox as he was on the day that I met him.
-- Elphias Doge in the Daily Prophet (DH2)
- Harry read Dumbledore's obituary as he was packing to leave the Dursley's house on Privet Drive for the last time (DH2).
- Dumbledore met Doge at the age of eleven when Elphias was recovering from dragon pox and was being shunned by other students. Doge called Dumbledore "the most brilliant student ever seen" at Hogwarts (DH2).
- Doge was quite sympathetic about Dumbledore's family problems, such as his father's time in Azkaban for Muggle-killing and the deaths of his mother and sister. He insisted in the memorial article that Albus himself was never anti-Muggle, which was not exactly the truth since Dumbledore told Harry that for a time Gellert Grindelwald persuaded him that Wizards were superior, and that Muggles needed their guidance (DH35). Doge actually knew little about the relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald since he was away touring Europe during the year before Ariana's death. The only thing Doge wrote about Grindelwald was that Dumbledore's greatest achievement was defeating him in a duel in 1945 (DH2).
- Doge wrote that Albus and Aberforth were actually fond of each other and had grown "cordial," which was a bit sugar-coated since all they ever did was complain about each other, with Albus making fun of Aberforth's love of goats (GF24), and Aberforth sarcastically called Albus "Mr. Brilliant" (DH28).
- Rita Skeeter tried to interview Doge for her own article in the Daily Prophet, but he wouldn't agree because he saw her as "vulture" and an "interfering trout" and her published piece was, in Doge's words, "Ill—informed sniping" (DH8).
- Rita Skeeter interviewed Bathilda Bagshot, a former neighbor of the Dumbledore family, who under the influence of Veritaserum gave her impressions of the family which were not true, such as Ariana being a Squib who was held captive by her mother, Kendra Dumbledore. The truth was which was that the young witch was assaulted by Muggle boys and couldn't control her magic anymore, so she couldn't attend Hogwarts or interact with the other denizons of Godric's Hollow (DH18).
Fan Theory: Doge mentions that he wrote to Dumbledore and told him of an "escape from chimaeras in Greece." A chimaera is described by Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beasts as a "rare Greek monster with a lion's head, a goat's body, and a dragon's tail." The chimaera could be seen as a symbol of the three Dumbledore siblings:
- Lion's Head: Albus the "Headmaster" and also a Gryffindor lion
- Goat's Body: Aberforth as the wizard who experimented on goats with a Goat Patronus
- Dragon's Tail: Ariana, just as dangerous as a sleeping dragon, whose painting helped Harry get back into Hogwarts in the end (--Jeanne Kimsey)
Fan Theory: Elphias Doge's undying loyalty to Dumbledore and glossing over of his flaws seems to be a parallel to Sirius Black and Remus Lupin, friends of James Potter who refused to admit that their best friend was anything but the coolest wizard alive. Even when confronted by Harry with "Snape's Worst Memory" in which James acted like a bully, Sirius tried to explain it all away as, at best, necessary - at worst, the act of an "arrogant berk" (OP28, OP29). Doge was befriended by Dumbledore at a time when he had turned green and pockmarked from dragon pox, just as Remus Lupin found friendship with James in spite of his lycanthropy (PA18). The main clue to this literary parallel is as simple as Doge's name - which contains the word "Dog." Sirius was a dog Animagus, while Lupin was a werewolf - basically a big dog too. No one has as much unconditional love as a faithful dog. (--Jeanne Kimsey)