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Slytherin House

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The Harry Potter Canon

" ...we’re not bad people. We’re like our emblem, the snake: sleek, powerful, and frequently misunderstood."
-- Gemma Farley, Slytherin House Introduction Letter (Pm)

 

 

Slytherin House

Head: Professor Severus Snape until spring of 1997, then Horace Slughorn.
Founder: Salazar Slytherin.
Blazon: vert, a serpent argent (that is, a silver serpent on a green field, hence the Slytherin colours of green and silver) (PA15, GF15). The serpent device signifies the founder’s gift of being a Parselmouth (CS11).
Ghost: The Bloody Baron (PS7).
Location: The Slytherin common room is a low-ceilinged, dungeon-like room with greenish lamps and chairs, with skulls all around. It is located under the lake, and has tapestries decorated with scenes from the lives of famous Slytherins (DH23, Pm). According to the Slytherin House Introduction Letter, the beds in the dormitories are four-posters with green silk hangings and covers embroidered with silver threads. You can hear the soothing sound of the lake lapping against the windows at night (Pm)

Sorting Hat description: (PS7)

Or perhaps in Slytherin
You’ll make your real friends
Those cunning folk use any means
To achieve their ends.

Slytherin Quidditch team
green robes
players chosen more for size than finesse or skill, it seems
all fly on Nimbus 2001s
the 1991-92 team included no girls

 

Known Slytherins, past and present

For each known Slytherin below, his or her name is given together with the years he or she was a student in Slytherin. See the individual students' entries for more detailed information (such as the references for how we know that they're Slytherins and what years they were in).

Note: Sirius Black says that everyone in the Black Family was in Slytherin except himself (DH33). While Slughorn tells Harry that he "had them all" meaning the Blacks in Slytherin House (DH4), there might be a few variations, so not all of them are listed here. Andromeda is included because she wasn't that much older than Sirius and Slughorn didn't exclude her.

(unknown, but roughly contemporary with the Founders)Slytherin gang

  • The Bloody Baron
  • Merlin "Prince of Enchanters" (c. 1000)

(years unknown, 18th century)

  • Corvinus Gaunt (Pm)

(years unknown, but possibly 19th century)

  • Slughorn, Horace

1858-1866

  • Black, Phineas Nigellus

Early 20th Century

  • Abraxas Malfoy (Draco's Grandfather)

(1936 - 1943) (or is it 1938?)

  • Avery (Riddle's contemporary)
  • Nott Sr.
  • Mulciber (possible Sr.)
  • Riddle, Tom Marvolo became Lord Voldemort

(Unknown, mid-20th-century)

  • Dolores Umbridge

(c. 1960s - 1970s)

  • Lestrange, Rodolphus (c. 1960s)
  • Lestrange, Rabastan (c. 1960s)
  • Black, Andromeda (c. 1960s)
  • Black, Bellatrix (c. 1962 - 1968)
  • Black, Narcissa (c. 1965 - 1972)
  • Malfoy, Lucius (1965 - 1972)
  • Avery (Snape's contemporary)
  • Mulciber (Snape's contemporary)
  • Rosier, Evan (c. 1970s)
  • Snape, Severus (1971 - 1978)
  • Wilkes (c. 1970s)
  • Black, Regulus (c. 1972 - 1979)

(1990s)

  • Bletchley, Miles
  • Higgs, Terence
    At least a year ahead of Harry, since he played Seeker in Harry's first year.
  • Urquhart (HBP14)
    No more than a year older than Harry, since he was on the team in Harry's sixth year. May be younger than Harry.
  • Vaisey (HBP14)
    No more than a year older than Harry, since he was on the team in Harry's sixth year. May be younger than Harry.

1986 - 1994

  • Flint, Marcus
    Repeated a year without being kicked off the team, so actually left Hogwarts at the end of Harry's third year rather than his second. This error was fixed in later editions of the books.

1988 - 1995

  • Bole
  • Derrick

1989 - 1996

  • Montague
  • Pucey, Adrian
  • Warrington, C. (c.1989 - 1996)

1991 - 1998

  • Bulstrode, Millicent
  • Crabbe, Vincent
  • Davis, Tracey (witch) (HPM)
  • Goyle, Gregory
  • Greengrass, Daphne (HPM, OP31)
  • Malfoy, Draco
  • Nott, Theodore
  • Parkinson, Pansy
  • Zabini, Blaise

1992 - 1999

  • Harper (male)

1993 - 1994

  • Astoria Greengrass (first name uncertain, could be Asteria, sister to Daphne) (JKR)

1994 - 2001

  • Baddock, Malcolm
  • Pritchard, Graham

Commentary

Notes

While many readers seem to wish that Slytherin House could be banished from Hogwarts, the fact is that Harry could not have defeated the Dark Lord without the help of Slytherin members. Snape taught him the Disarming Charm which became Harry's "signature move" as Lupin put it, and the only spell that ever worked against Voldemort, undoubtedly saving his life in the graveyard. Snape also gave him the tip about the bezoar which saved Ron's life, the Half-Blood Prince potions book which finally made him successful in Potions so he could become an Auror, the silver doe which led him to the real Sword of Gryffindor, and the memories of his mother Lily which gave him the understanding and willingness to sacrifice himself to defeat Voldemort. But other Slytherins were just as important - Slughorn for his memory about the horcruxes, Regulus for stealing Slytherin's locket, Narcissa for her bold lie to Voldemort which brought Harry back to the castle, Crabbe for the Fiendfyre which destroyed the diadem of Ravenclaw, and even Slytherin himself for the basilisk fangs that destroyed Tom Riddle's diary and the Hufflepuff cup. Finally there is Draco, Harry's nemesis for most of the series. Through Draco, someone he knew well, Harry began to humanize the Death Eaters and realize how trapped some of them were in their predicament with the Dark Lord. And it was only by wrestling away Draco's hawthorn wand that Harry could become Master of Death. He used Draco's wand to kill Voldemort, and also to receive complete allegiance of the Elder Wand. ~ SIP

 

Stephen King referenced Slytherin House in the seventh book of his Dark Tower series, via Snitchseeker.

"Check out the crate-lid," Jake said when they joined her.

Susannah had set it aside; Jake picked it up and was studying it with admiration. It showed the face of a smiling boy with a lightning-bolt scar on his forehead. He was wearing round glasses and brandishing what appeared to be a magician's wand at a floating sneetch. The words stenciled beneath the drawing read:

PROPERTY 449TH SQUADRON
24 "SNEETCHES"
HARRY POTTER MODEL
SERIAL #465-17-CC NDJKR
"Don't Mess with the 449!"
We'll Kick the "Slytherin" Out of You!

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