Abendroth Blutjager's Guide to Harry Potter

Thursday, July 27, 2006


  • 3 pieces of mail - it's bills and a letter for Harry. Looks like the Dursleys don't get much mail. Perhaps they are not too popular?
  • a letter for Harry (1) - It's only one because McGonagall hopes Harry will get the letter the first time, like most accepted children.
  • alarm went of at 6 o'clock a.m. - it's half of 12 anyway...
  • another letter for Harry - Perhaps the first got misplaced at the Dursley's house? I think McGonagall is trying to be patient.
  • another 3 letters for Harry - 1 x 3. McGonagall is getting worried....
  • 12 letters for Harry - 3 x 4. 12 is one of those all-important numbers in this series.
  • 24 letters for Harry... - 2 x 3 x 4 or 12 x 2. Any multiple of 12 is to be considered important. McGonagall might be using "simple" multiplication spells for so quickly producing these letters now...or something.
  • ...inside 2 dozen eggs (24, or 12 x 2), the letters are shredded in a food processor - McGonagall is getting quite desperate now!
  • 30 or 40 letters - how about 36? That would be 12 x 3...another multiple of 12. Otherwise it really could be 40, in which case it would be seen as a bad omen, 40 being traditionally associated with bad luck or disasterous events (think 40 days and 40 nights of rain).
  • Dudley missed 5 television programs - the numbers nine and five are often used with the Durselys. From http://www.astrology-numerology.com/numerology.html, we get "5 Negative Traits: Restless, discontent, edgy temperament and speech, dissatisfaction, too many hasty decisions, impatience, lacking in application." Dudley's behavior is almost perfectly described for this scene.
  • Room 17 at the hotel - we later find out 17 is the coming-of-age in the wizarding world. The TWT champions are "supposed" to be 17 to participate. You have to be 17 to get you apparation license.
  • a hundred letters - It's a nice even number. The hotel owner is approximating. I wonder if the real number is 144....
  • How many letters actually got delivered to the house the day they left? - Harry's just guessing at the amount here. He goes from the shack on the rock to Diagon Alley, so he never gets to see how many letters were really delivered. 144? 288?
  • Harry's 11th birthday - from http://www.astrology-numerology.com/num-keywords.html, we get "11 See number 2. Spirituality is emphasized more, but in essence, the 2 traits, positive and negative apply" and "2 Positive Traits: Cooperation, adaptability, considerate of others, sensitive to the needs of others, partnering, an arbiter or mediator, modest, sincere, spiritually influenced, a diplomat. 2 Negative Traits: Shyness, timidity, fear, self-consciousness, drown in detail, depression."
  • 4 bags of chips - There happen to be four of them. I'm surprised Vernon not only got food for Harry but that he got the same amount for Harry as he did for himself, Petunia, and especially Dudley.
  • 4 bananas - ditto as for the bags of chips
  • "low rolls of thunder that started near midnight" - 12 midnight. 12's are so closely associated with time, and Jo uses 12's in context with travel as well...makes me think of planes of reality and space, levels, astral projection.... I have a feeling 12 is particularly important in time travel, and also in apparation...anything that disrupts the space-time continuum.
  • "10 minutes' time" - since 10 reduces to 1 (in numerology) and 1 is the begining, then 10 is a good starting point for a countdown....
  • "five minutes to go"
  • "four minutes to go"
  • "three minutes to go"
  • "two minutes to go"
  • "one minute to go...
  • "...and he'd be eleven" - ditto what I said about 11 above.
  • "thirty seconds...twenty...ten...nine"
  • "three...two...one"
  • a bang on the door at the stroke of midnight - again, 12 midnight. Midnight, near midnight, even near 12 noon...Jo often uses these times for major travelling experiences. The distance travelled at these times isn't as important as who's travelling at these times, and to where. We'll have to keep an eye on arrival and departure times.

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  • Dennis - "Medieval vernacular form of the Greek name Dionysios". (www.ancestry.com)
  • Malcolm - "Anglicized form of the Gaelic name Mael Coluim “devotee of St Columba”. Columba, whose name means “dove” in Latin, was a 6th-century monk of Irish origin who played a leading part in the conversion to Christianity of Scotland and northern England" (www.ancestry.com).
  • Gordon - "from the Scottish surname, which is derived from a placename. It is a matter of dispute whether it referred originally to the Gordon in Berwickshire or to a similarly named place in Normandy" (www.ancestry.com). We can add "The boy's name Gordon is pronounced GORD-en. It is of Old English and Gaelic origin, and its meaning is 'large fortification.' Also possibly a place name meaning 'hill near meadows' or 'triangular hill.' Name of one of the great Scottish clans." (www.thinkbabynames)
  • Smeltings - to "smelt" is to "melt or fuse (ores) in order to separate the metallic constituents. To melt or fuse. Used of ores." (www.dictionary.com) Vernon wants his alma mater to reinforce all the nonesense he's been teaching Dudley. Smeltings would mold Dudley into the man Vernon wants him to be.
  • Stonewall High - to "stonewall" means to "1: obstruct or hinder any discussion... 2: engage in delaying tactics or refuse to cooperate" (www.dictionary.com). It can easily be said that the Dursleys' choice of school for Harry shows their attitude towards him and his wizarding aptitude. They want to squash the wizard out of him, and he's not supposed to ask them any questions.
  • Isle of Wight - "island county (1991 pop. 126,600), 147 sq mi (381 sq km), S England, across the Solent and Spithead channels from Hampshire. The administrative center is Newport. The island is 23 mi (37 km) long from the eastern Foreland to the Needles (detached chalk formations at the western extremity) and 13 mi (21 km) wide. The Medina, which almost bisects the island, and the East Yar and the West Yar are the chief rivers. Numerous small streams on the southern coast have cut a series of picturesque gullies in the soft rock. The climate is mild, and the scenery, as a result of the contrasting geological strata, is varied. Quaint villages, such as Ventnor, and a beautiful coast line make the island a popular resort. Cowes is an important port. The island was conquered by the Romans in A.D. 43 and probably settled later by the Jutes. It was annexed to the kingdom of Wessex in 661 and Christianized c.700. The Isle of Wight was the headquarters of the Danes at the end of the 10th cent. William I bestowed the lordship of the island upon William Fitz-Osbern. In 1293 it returned permanently to the crown. At Carisbrooke Castle, now in ruins, King Charles I was imprisoned (1647–48). In 1890 the island was established as a separate administrative county. Queen Victoria's seaside home, Osborne House, is near the famous yachting center at Cowes. Parkhurst, a major British maximun security prison, is on the island." (www.reference.com) Also from the same site, "The island geography close to the densely populated south of England led to it gaining three prisons: Albany, Camphill and Parkhurst located outside Newport. Albany and Parkhurst were once among the few Category A prisons in the UK until they were downgraded in the 1990s. Parkhurst especially enjoyed notoriety as one of toughest jails in the British Isles and "hosted" many notable inmates, including the Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe and the Kray twins."
  • Little Whinging - to "whinge" is to "whine". It can also be spelled "Winje". Perhaps a little whinging is whining about little, petty things. Or perhaps it's that the inhabitants have little to whine about. http://www.randomhouse.com/wotd/index.pperl?date=19970909 says to whinge is "to complain in a peevish manner".
  • Surrey - Sure, it's a county in southeast England, but it's also "A four-wheeled horse-drawn pleasure carriage having two or four seats" (www.dictionary.com).
  • Railview Hotel - There is a Railview Hotel (and Hotel Railview) in India. "The Railview Hotel is a government-approved 2-Star Hotel. It is located Opposite Kollam railway station The hotel has one bar and one restaurant serving indian, chinese, tandoor, continental cuisines.The Railview Hotel has a total of 23 rooms. Hotel and room amenities include TV with 55 channels, STD/ISD at P&T rates, Internet and Email, Ample car parking space, Boating to tourist places, Sight seeing to tourist places etc..." (www.cruisingindia.com) Two stars sounds about right for our Railview Hotel in Cokeworth. I wonder if Jo has ever stayed at the Railview Hotel in Kollam, India.... There is also a Railway Hotel in Ghana. It's rating is listed simply as "budget". There is no list of amenities.... Even the non-existant hotel in Cokeworth is nicer than that....
  • Cokeworth - I wasn't sure what JKR was going for until I looked at the French translation. In the French version the town is called Carbone-les-mines. And then I remembered, coke is a carbon residue, specifically "The solid residue of impure carbon obtained from bituminous coal and other carbonaceous materials after removal of volatile material by destructive distillation. It is used as a fuel and in making steel." (www.dictionary.com) JKR constantly compares the Dursleys to the base metals. This is yet another reference to Alchemy, the alchemical process, and how the Dursleys will never be more than they are now because they refuse to change.
  • The Great Humberto - This is apparently supposed to be some magician Dudley's fond of watching...ironic considering he has the real thing living in his house.... the name Humberto is related to Hubert and Humbert. "The boy's name Hubert is pronounced HEW-bert. It is of Old German origin, and its meaning is 'bright or shining intellect'." (www.thinkbabynames.com) Also from this website, "The boy's name Humbert is of Old German origin, and its meaning is 'famous giant; renowned warrior.' Made famous by the narrator of Vladimir Nabokov's 'Lolita', Humbert Humbert. The Spanish variant Humberto (oom-BARE-toh) is also a saint's name."

Upadate on JKR's Watch: TFutureLITPast,P5 Revisited

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I took these pics from the HP Lexicon....

What in the Potterverse is associated with blue light? Portkeys!

What's a portkey for? Travel!

And with a watch involved? Time-Travel?!

Back to my ponderings about Harry's next time-travelling adventure....

Thursday, July 20, 2006

The Watch on JKR's Website

A slight diversion from my chapter-by-chapter posts, I want to mention something about clues on JKR's website.

On the main page...her desk, there is a simple little wristwatch...well, it's not really so simple. Of course, most sleuths have seen the dial go nuts and activate a marble. If you click on the marble you can gain an "easter egg" to add to your scrapbook.

Well, I want to examine the watch.

When it starts acting weird, 12 hands appear, and all the number marks turn to dots. Some of the dots are bigger than others -- they vary in size...and they also vary in color.

I think the dots represent the nine planets, the sun, Earth's moon, and perhaps one other moon...maybe Io or another well-known moon of Jupiter. Otherwise they could all represent stars.

The twelve hands remind me of the 12 hands on Dumbledore's pocket watch. It also has planets on it.

Ron's watch is a bit different. It has symbols and stars, doesn't it? Also, there is no mention of hands, is there....?

It's interesting to think about.