The Burrow: Who is the Half-Blood Prince?

by Caitlin G

Ever since J.K. Rowling let us in on the title for book six, we’ve been shouting theories left and right about who the half-blood prince is. J.K. Rowling has already told us that two contenders are out of the question: Harry and Voldemort. Who else though is a possible “royal”?

Half-blood could mean anything: Half-giant, half-wizard, half-goblin(?)… The list goes on and on. We do know one thing for sure; our favorite muggle born witch is not in contention. However several males are possible half-blood princes. I’ll explain each one by one.

1. Dean Thomas

2. Tom Riddle

3. Hagrid

4. An entirely new character

We know several things about Dean Thomas. He believes that he is a full muggle, he is in Harry’s year at Hogwarts and a friend of Harry and Ron’s. While he’s not a major character in the story, he’s strategically placed in the background to supply comic relief, add support to the story,… etc. From what J.K. Rowling tells us on her website though we know several other things:

1. Dean Thomas’s father was in fact a wizard and left Dean’s family when Dean was very young in order to protect Dean and his mother from the Death Eaters. So Dean is a half-blood.

2. The prince part: Dean’s father was killed by the Death Eater’s when he refused to join them. Could this (and I’m stretching this) elevate his father to “royalty” that would make Dean, because of his father, a prince? Or could Dean, having discovered his “half-bloodness” do something that would make him worthy of the royal title?

Some reasons that Dean Thomas would be able to be the half-blood prince:

1. His background fits.

2. While not a strong character at this point in the story, JK Rowling could easily write him so that he becomes a more developed character. This may just be something of my observation but Dean seems to become a stronger character as the series goes on. In HP and the SS, Dean is mentioned once (during the sorting ceremony) in the American version (he’s not mentioned at all in the British version). By the fifth book however, we hear from him every once and a while. This could be because Dean is becoming a more developed character OR that Harry is simply “coming out of his shell” more OR a combination of the two.

3. JK mentions on her website that she was originally going to put Dean’s discovery about his family in CoS. However he was cut. You may also remember that Half-Blood Prince was originally the title for the second book. Could there be a link?

There are some reason’s Dean isn’t the half-blood prince also:

1. JK Rowling told us his history on her website. It doesn’t seem to me that she would reveal a whole characters history on her website and then make it a central part of the book.

2. JK Rowling said it was doubtful Dean’s history would ever get into the books.

(This one seems pretty definite to me!) So we move onto choice number two: Tom Riddle. Now this one is questionable. JK told us that Voldemort wasn’t the half-blood prince. It could be argued though that Tom Riddle and Voldemort are not the same person although they share the same memories. Voldemort underwent so many magical transformations that the two could be considered entirely different persons. Tom Riddle is a half-blood, he’s the heir of Slytherin and he was a head-boy (titles that would make him “royalty”?). JK also said that CoS was an extremely important book; it foreshadows much of what happens in the last two books. Also Tom Riddle was a major character in book two, and book two was going to be named Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. And I ask you, if Harry is not the half-blood prince who else would fit the title? Tom Riddle. However, as Tom Riddle is a memory (although he almost succeeded in becoming reality) and he is currently “dead” (how do you describe a memory that was stabbed with a basilik fang?). He would have to come back somehow which could provide a very interesting plot-line.

Another candidate for the title of half-blood prince is Hagrid. Hagrid is a half-giant and half-wizard. The reason I think that Hagrid is a novel candidate is because most of us assume that the half-blood prince is half-wizard, half-muggle. Hagrid adds something new to the mix by being half-giant, something that JK might throw at us. Hagrid has been an integral part of the story line ever since the first chapter of SS, so it is easily conceivable that he is a half-blood prince. JK has told us most everything about Hagrid’s past so far- his childhood Harry and Ron overheard while Hagrid was talking to Madam Maxime at the Yule ball and in CoS we learned how Hagrid was expelled. In OotP we also learn about Hagrid’s brother Grawp. I think that there must be some sort of twist that we haven’t heard about if Hagrid is to be the half-blood prince.

My last and final nominee for half-blood prince is a new character. The reason I don’t think this is likely is because it is very hard to add a new character (who has been at Hogwarts for the past five years- JK said she wasn’t going to add anyone who was of foreign descent, since Hogwarts is, I’m assuming, the only British school for witches and wizards a new comer must be of foreign descent). She managed to pull it off with Luna but to add another new character to the others who are already extremely deep and developed would be tough.

So who is the half-blood prince? I think we must wait and find out.