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"I'll never apologise to you losers and Mudbloods! I'm Merula Snyde! Fourth generation Slytherin! The greatest witch at Hogwarts! I do what I want when I want! I run this school!"
—Merula Snyde's opinion of herself[src]

Merula Snyde (born c. 1973) was a witch who began attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in 1984 and was sorted into Slytherin.

Biography

Early life

Merula's parents were Death Eaters who supported Lord Voldemort. After the Dark Lord's demise in 1981, her parents were captured and sent to Azkaban.

Merula claimed to have attended every Quidditch World Cup since she was born.[2]

Hogwarts years (1984-1991)

First year

Merula began attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in 1984. On 1 September, 1984, during the journey on the Hogwarts Express she tormented Ben Copper the entire time, by threatening him and calling him a "Mudblood."[3]

1984 First Years

First-years being Sorted in 1984

Once they arrived at the school, Merula and the rest of the first years were greeted at the Great Hall by the rest of the students and the staff. Professor McGonagall proceeded to provide them with a short explanation of the four Hogwarts HousesGryffindor, the brave and chivalrous, Hufflepuff, the kind and diligent, Ravenclaw, the witty and wise, and Slytherin, the cunning and ambitious — voicing her hope that all of the newcomers would make fine additions to the ranks of great witches and wizards that each House had produced in the past.[4] Eventually, Merula was sorted into Slytherin, becoming the fourth generation of her family to be sorted in that house.

As a result of her constant bullying, Ben Copper spent his first days at Hogwarts following Merula around, hoping this would prevent her from sneaking up on him, or give him a chance to run away if she did.[citation needed] One day, before the start of a Potions class in the Dungeons, Merula was bullying Rowan Khanna by forcing them into saying that she was the most powerful witch at Hogwarts. However, Jacob's sibling stood up for Rowan and Merula started teasing them by making fun of Jacob.[5] When Rowan mentioned that Professor Flitwick said Jacob's sibling cast the best Wand-Lighting Charm of any first-year in years, Merula resolved to be nothing but trouble for them and to show that she was more powerful than them.

She then sent Jacob's sibling a fake letter from Professor Snape and locked them in a room full of Devil's Snare, but they were able to escape, thanks to Hagrid's timely intervention.[6] Afterwards, Merula reappears as Rowan and Jacob's Sibling are playing gobstones, and begins to taunt the two. She insinuate that Jacob's quest for the Cursed Vaults led him down a dark path that resulted in him joining Voldemort. Jacob's sibling is presented with an opportunity to retaliate by bringing up Merula's Death Eater heritage and how her parents are in Azkaban in response. Regardless, the argument eventually escalates to Merula challenging Jacob's sibling to a duel and ends with Merula using the Knockback Jinx on Jacob's sibling, as the only spell they know up until that point is the Wand-Lighting Charm.

After receiving training from their prefect, Jacob's sibling finds Merula in the Clocktower Courtyard, bullying Ben Copper by expressing her distaste for Muggle-born and half-blood wizards in Hogwarts. Jacob's sibling intervenes to defend Ben and challenges Merula to a duel, which they win. Shocked at Jacob's sibling's mastery over the Disarming Charm, Merula refuses to acknowledge her defeat or apologise for her behaviour, while proclaiming herself to be the greatest witch in Hogwarts and free to do what she wants. Professors Snape and Flitwick approach her from behind during her tirade, much to her surprise and begin to question what happened here. Ultimately, Jacob's sibling is blamed for the duel, regardless whether or not they struck Merula first, and is forced to lose points from their house.

Immediately after this, Merula follows Snape and Filch into the fifth-floor corridor, with Jacob's sibling following after her. Together, they spy on Snape and Filch having a conversation about the cursed ice and sealing a room within the corridor to contain it from spreading. Jacob's sibling and Merula briefly discuss the nature of the cursed vaults, before going their separate ways. Jacob's sibling later meets Merula in another potion's class and she asks whether or not they divulged the vault's existence to anyone. Regardless of their answer, Merula will taunt Jacob's sibling and then focus on their lesson for brewing a Herbicide Potion. At the end of class, Jacob's sibling attempts to assist Merula by giving her tips on how to correctly brew the potion, to which Snape awards them with house points, much to Merula's chagrin.

Towards the end of the year, Jacob's sibling, along with Rowan and an optional party member, will investigate the fifth-floor corridor where the cursed ice is supposedly spreading from. Initially, the trio investigate a door leading to a small room where the ice originated from, only to be ambushed by Merula casting the Knockback Jinx on Jacob sibling's and their friends. After declaring that only she can claim the power and treasures of the vault for herself, Merula enters the small room alone, while the trio follow after her. Upon entering the room, they discover Merula partially encased in a block of ice from the waist down and she demands Jacob's sibling to help her. After being freed from the ice and escaping the small room, Merula declares this whole expedition to be a waste of her time and leaves the area. Merula isn't seen again, except briefly in the End-of-term feast.

Second year

During the 1985–1986 school year, Penny Haywood warned Jacob's sibling that Merula was eager for a rematch after being defeated by them the previous year.[7] During a potions class, Jacob's sibling attempted to reason with Merula, citing that nobody cared about what happened last year. Merula points out that, whenever duelling was mentioned, their duel was often brought up and how strong Jacob's sibling was compared to her. As a result, Jacob's sibling had no choice but to accept Merula's challenge, but was helped by Penny in preparation for their second duel. Jacob's sibling then met with Merula in the Clocktower Courtyard at night, emerging victorious from their duel. Merula was confounded by her second defeat, but stated that, while their duel was concluded, the rivalry between them would never be over.[8]


Third year

This year, Merula was overheard saying she had stolen books on Dark Magic from the Restricted Section.

Physical appearance

Merula Snyde

Merula on the Leaderboard

Merula had short and messy dark brown hair, with one area an orange colour, and violet eyes. She had thick furrowed eyebrows. Merula also smelled like cloves, nail polish, and some other elusive scent.[9] Her stockings have a hole around her left kneecap, and she wears black combat boots.

Personality and traits

A strong-willed yet mean-spirited witch, Merula Snyde is a talented young girl who exemplifies many of Slytherin's traits, such as cunningness, determination and ambition. Merula is highly rebellious and bullies those around her, especially wizards from Muggle or half-blood families. Her greatest trait, however, is her ambition to prove she is the best, which is her primary motivation for seeking out the Cursed Vaults and the major reason for being in constant conflict with Jacob's sibling.

Merula's hatred for Jacob's sibling pushes her to go to great lengths to sabotage her rival, by either attempting to get them expelled or badly injured. Indeed, Merula often goes out of her way to seek out Jacob's sibling in classes, either to taunt them about Jacob or to generally be a nuisance. Merula is always eager for a fight with Jacob's sibling and never backs down from a challenge. Despite her aggressive nature, Merula does demonstrate a strong work ethic and can often be seen studying alone in the library and is noted to be a competent student by many of her peers, especially in potions class.

Magical abilities and skills

Etymology

"Merula" is a Latin word that means "blackbird". "Snyde" comes from the Danish word for "cheat".

Behind the scenes

  • In her second year, Merula boasts to Jacob's sibling that she's working with someone on finding the Cursed Vaults. That someone is likely Tulip Karasu, as the two were still working together during their second year and only ended their partnership before their third year.
  • It is also possible she referred to Patricia Rakepick, since Severus Snape believed that Rakepick had been watching Jacob's sibling already before she was invited to Hogwarts by Dumbledore.
  • As both her parents are in Azkaban, it's currently unknown who takes care of her. If Merula's claims about attending the Quidditch World Cups are true, it's likely she's being raised by a family member.
  • Merula owns a broom she considers to be far superior to the brooms provided by Hogwarts during flying class, claims to that the Snyde family vault in Gringotts contains "jeweled shells", and that her mother owned a unicorn a long time ago.[9] Because of these claims, it can be assumed that the Snyde family was quite wealthy in its prime.
  • If Jacob's sibling is sorted into Slytherin, Merula will appear in additional side-quests revolving around plotting revenge against Gryffindor for defeating their house in Quidditch.

Appearances

Notes and references

  1. "World Exclusive Interview with J K Rowling," South West News Service, 8 July 2000 - "Hogwarts just serves Britain and Ireland."
  2. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1 onward, Flying Lessons in general
  3. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1, Chapter 3 (Dealing With Trouble)
  4. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1, Chapter 2 (Welcome To Hogwarts)
  5. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1, Chapter 2 (Welcome To Hogwarts) - Potions Lesson "Cure for Boils Potion"
  6. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1, Chapter 3 (Dealing With Trouble)
  7. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 1, Chapter 7 (Class Matters)
  8. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 2, Side Quest "Merula's Revenge"
  9. 9.0 9.1 Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 4 onward, Care of Magical Creatures Lessons in general