Severus Snape

Severus Snape

    Harry Potter Series
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Grew Up… in a grimy part of England called Spinner’s End, which is on a Muggle street. Though knowledge of his childhood is scarce, it is clear that Snape’s home life with his witch mother and Muggle father was less than ideal.

Living… at Hogwarts castle, where he has taught for a number of years. While he’s a longtime fixture at the school, he is far from beloved. Most students are terrified of the sharp-tongued Snape, and some professors seem almost as afraid of him. About the only person who seems even mildly fond of Snape – aside from his young acolytes in Slytherin House – is Headmaster Albus Dumbledore. Yet most of Dumbledore’s allies don’t see why he even tolerates Snape, never mind trusts him. That’s especially true because Snape practiced the Dark Arts during the First Wizarding War.

Profession… Potions Master at Hogwarts. Though it’s a well-known fact that he’s long fancied the job of Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, Snape is currently teaching students how to properly combine spine of lionfish with horn of a bicorn. He seems to take a special dislike to Harry Potter, who is the most famous student at Hogwarts because he survived an attack as an infant from the Dark Lord, Voldemort, which killed Harry’s parents (and may have killed Voldemort). It turns out that Snape went to Hogwarts with Harry’s folks, James and Lily, and disliked James intensely (though not without some legitimate reasons). Harry is convinced that Snape goes out of his way to harass him, and it seems he has a point.

Interests… breeding misery and instilling fear in his students. Snape is feared by many students because he is harsh and often cruel to those who “lack the proper disposition” for potion-making. His office is filled with slimy things floating in jars, and his cold, black eyes bore into terrified students’ souls. He’s also highly interested in the Dark Arts, though he claims he is no longer tempted by them.

Relationship Status… single. Professor Snape’s love life seems to have never blossomed. In fact, it’s hard to imagine him feeling tender toward another human being. But perhaps Snape had some romantic hopes when he was a younger man. Anything’s possible, right?

Challenge… walking a very fine line between the two sides in a brewing battle. Snape was a Death Eater in the past, so when it appears that Voldemort may really have returned, his former Death Eater colleagues expect that he will rejoin them. That, too, is what most of those aligned against Voldemort, including the Order of the Phoenix, feel as well. Yet Dumbledore continues to trust Snape as a valuable ally, which confounds many. Could Snape in fact be a double agent?

Personality… mean, vindictive, and hotheaded. Snape is unkind to a bewildered Harry from Harry’s first moment at Hogwarts. Though Snape’s hatred of him is born of a loathing curated during his own time at the school, Harry soon hates Snape just as much for how cruel he is to himself and the other students. Snape lives to see Harry thwarted, giving him detention at every opportunity. He hates seemingly everyone, and is a bit irrational when he gets angry. But again, it’s hard to know if Snape’s seemingly cruel actions are a ploy to further some other end. Snape is truly a mystery, perhaps even to himself.


Fans of him also like:

Find out how you match to him and 5500+ other characters