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From this can we say that Dippet directly succeeded Black and was Dumbledore's predecessor? He's the only known male headmaster between the two, fits easily, and with the Daily Prophet of 1926 (which is after Black died), he seems to fit the bill for headmaster of the time. If so, then we know Dippet's years in office; 1925 - 1965/1971, a tenure of 40 to 45 years. Your thoughts? --HarryPotterRules1 (talk) 18:36, November 18, 2016 (UTC)

Couldn't it be possible that there were other Headmasters between Black and him? A complete list of all Headmasters has never been revealed, so I think we can't exclude that it was someone unknown. --Rodolphus (talk) 18:56, November 18, 2016 (UTC)

1992?

Didn't Rowling write somewhere that a Headmaster/Headmistress had to die in office to get their portrait up, drawing parallels with the gallery of British monarchs or something like that? Ninclow (talk) 01:55, April 3, 2017 (UTC)

As has been discussed repeatedly, she was joking - the exact quote from her Carnegie Hall talk:
"So all the portraits you see in the headmaster’s study are all headmasters and mistresses who died, it’s like British royals. You only get good press if you die in office. Abdication is not acceptable, particularly if you marry and [sic] American. I’m kidding! [laughter] I digress." (emphasis mine)
While you may not like it, several others have already weighed in on this repeatedly and the community consensus is to go by the dates given in Harry Potter Limited Edition and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (film). Why do you insist on revisiting this (despite the previous outcomes)? --Ironyak1 (talk) 16:17, September 10, 2017 (UTC)
First off, I think you misintepreted the joke. The joke, obviously, is NOT that "it’s like British royals. You only get good press if you die in office." or "abdication is not acceptable" the joke was "particularly if you marry and [sic] American" How do I know this for certain? Because she apologise for the digress and goes on about how "I thought this one through, because it was very important to me, I know Harry would have insisted that Snape’s portrait was on that wall, right beside Dumbledore’s." No Headmaster known in canon ever married an American, so OBVIOUSLY she was not referring to them or their portraits when she said that she was kidding. Her Carnegie Hall talk took place on October 20, 2007. The film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, however, came out five years earlier. However awesome you find the "Harry Potter Limited Edition", not only does the information within come from the movie productions, which Rowling not necessarily always was involved in where props are concerned, but the source stating Dippet died in 1992 that appears in this new book dates back to five years after Rowling answered that question. Of COURSE she didn't joke about the headmasters and headmistress having to die in office to get in office to get a portrait, with Snape beng a notable exception due to his percieved abandonment of the post yet later proven alligiance. What kind of author of any book or books would do that? What kind of author wouldn't have the sufficent respect for their fans to NOT take their seriously when discussing about the universe they created? I don't know, but Rowling aren't one of them. 
Secondly... Because the community consensus is wrong. Because Rowling's word is law unless it is I who point out something she says, and ecause it is a matter of principle: In recent years, almost every time, whenever I make an opinion known, whatever it is, regardless of whether I am right or wrong, one or more comes with some half-baked excuse because why I am wrong, and the MOMENT I post a counter-argument, the individual or individuals disagreeing have automathically half the wikia behind them plus at least one of the admins. And I am growing sick of feeling like an idiot because some educated literate start throwing logical fallacies or to sit left with the empty feeling that I am wrong about everything, not for a lack of understanding canon, but because the "majority", the "most people" tells me I am wrong. It feels like, more often than not, that I say the sky is blue because I spot a breach in the otherwise dark clowds, and everything everyone else see from where they stand is grey, and therere, there can be no blue sky. That's why I presist, dspite the previous outcomes.Ninclow (talk) 19:22, September 10, 2017 (UTC)
BUMP! Ninclow (talk) 20:13, September 12, 2017 (UTC)
The argument that "community consensus is wrong" is a non-starter. Unless there is clear evidence to go by, we only have differing interpretations to work with and those interpretations with the most support are reflected in the article. I don't want to have to rehash the archived discussion, for everyone's sake, but without new evidence, one person's opinion is not enough to change what many others have found agreement on. Cheers --Ironyak1 (talk) 18:17, February 15, 2018 (UTC)

In reposne to Kates39's comment that; "it's not just about what you want, the community agreed with the judgement". If you read this: Let me ask you - since when have I ever changed anything because I wanted it to say differently without a solid reason for changing it? What do you take me for?

IIronyak1: t's not an argument, it's a statement. And more importantly, it is also a fact. The argument behind that statement is presented above. But even if it was the argument, then I am sorry to say that actually, it is not. Because last time I checked, this wikia don't run on community consensus, it runs on what is canon and what is not, and consensus is required when there is uncertainty in regard to the validity of canonical sources. This time, however, it is the movies vs Rowling, and I am sorry to say for those who disagree that if a vast majority of the community holds with the movie then - too bad, Rowling have stated otherwise, and she outranks any information from the movies. That is not an intepretation, that is, as far as I have gathered, the policy of this wiki. Also, if you would be so kind as to remove the excessively long blockage on the Dippet page, it'd be much appreciated. It isn't as if I would have continued to edit it back when I can see people takes the time to actually respond to me on the talk page.

As for source? Rowling herself : 

p>Q: Is Severus Snape’s portrait in the headmaster’s office?

JKR: Some have been asking why hasn’t the portrait appeared immediately. It doesn’t. The reason is that the perception in the castle itself and everyone who was in the castle, because Snape kept his secret so well was that he abandoned his post. So all the portraits you see in the headmaster’s study are all headmasters and mistresses who died, it’s like British royals. You only get good press if you die in office. Abdication is not acceptable, [joke about British royals marrying Americans] I know, because I thought this one through, because it was very important to me, I know Harry would have insisted that Snape’s portrait was on that wall, right beside Dumbledore’s. Ninclow (talk) 21:44, February 15, 2018 (UTC)

Well you changed information which the community agreed upon, because you wanted it to say what you thought was right (i.e. what you want it to say). But let's move on from that and talk about the problem. We know Headteachers keep their portrait under lock and key until they pass on, because they wanted to teach it everything about their character and what they know for future Headteachers. When they pass away, the portrait would be put up.
I took the joke to have started with "you only get good press if you die". Edward VIII, who the joke refers to, abdicated to marry an American and that's why he had bad press. If he had abdicated for health problems like many here in England thought Elizabeth II would do a couple of years ago, then Edward would still receive good press. The joke was a laugh about how he never received good press because of why he abdicated.
At that point in time when Rowling made the interview, the only still living Headteacher was the present one. Rowling was right when she said the only portraits up were only of dead people. Then she made a joke and then returned to the point and answered what she asked.
Armando could have left for a good purpose and kept the portrait until he passed away (why would the current Headteacher needed a picture when they could talk to the real Armando?). Tier two canon can then be part of it (i.e. the films) and he was still alive in 1992. The portrait appears in 1993 making it a perfectly okay death date. - Kates39 (talk) 22:10, February 15, 2018 (UTC)
The quote from JKR:
[...] So all the portraits you see in the headmaster’s study are all headmasters and mistresses who died, it’s like British royals. You only get good press if you die in office. Abdication is not acceptable, particularly if you marry and American. I’m kidding! [laughter] I digress.[...]
Many, like Kates39, Starstuff, and myself, have given feedback on their interpretation as to what JKR is joking about here and most have come to the agreement that she is joking that you only get good press (i.e. a portrait) if you die in office and abdication is not acceptable. You disagree and your interpretation is that she is only joking about marrying an American. While JKR's statements are canon, there is plenty left to interpretation when she says she was kidding. Given that there are clear canon sources for the 1992 date, it holds more weight for me than one of several possible interpretations of JKR's statements.
Given that you have already said that community consensus is wrong there is little reason for anyone to reply to you to discuss again. Without new evidence or feedback from many others who agree with your interpretation there is no reason to change the article. As you repeatedly reverted edits to force your interpretation, the page protection was needed and will remain in place for the week. --Ironyak1 (talk) 22:19, February 15, 2018 (UTC)


Well you changed information which the community agreed upon, because you wanted it to say what you thought was right (i.e. what you want it to say).

No I didn't change it to what I wanted it to say, I changed it to what it is supposed to say as per canon information available to us. Big difference.

We know Headteachers keep their portrait under lock and key until they pass on, because they wanted to teach it everything about their character and what they know for future Headteachers. When they pass away, the portrait would be put up.

Granted they die in office, as Rowling confirmed. The Headmaster office might be bigger than the common teacher's study, but how do you expect the portraits of every single Headmaster and Headmistress to fit on the wall in that room? The BTS section, I believe, mention something about the possibility of the portraits shrinking to make room for new ones, but I have yet to see any indication of Dumbledore using a magnifying glass to look one of his more distant successors in the eye while talking to them or Harry having to move accross the room and/or squint to recognise that the tiny shapes on the wall were very, very small portraits. 


The joke was a laugh about how he never received good press because of why he abdicated.

You mean "you only get good press if you die in office".  Also - indeed. The joke was: "a laugh about how he never received good press because of why he abdicated", not a laugh about how "all Headmasters gets a portrait on the wall as a result of how Edward VIII never received good press because of why he abdicated."

Armando could have left for a good purpose and kept the portrait until he passed away (why would the current Headteacher needed a picture when they could talk to the real Armando?).

Or it would have - more realistically - adorned the wall of some Dippet descendant or put somewhere else in the castle to commemorate him. Snape's portrait didn't get up on the wall because he abadoned you post. If you retire or resign, you have abandoned the Headmastership of the school, you just did it formally and with the paperwork in order. You are no longer part of the staff at Hogwarts, so what right would you have to leave something as important as an "imprint" of yourself behind to "advise the current Headmaster" if you didn't bother to stay on? Don't it make more sense that only those so dedicated to Hogwarts that the stay at their post until the very end are given that honor? Also, the first half of this paragraph already invalidates the argument you presented. Abandonment is abandonment, regardless of whether you do it formally or not.

Tier two canon can then be part of it (i.e. the films) and he was still alive in 1992.

And tier-one canon contradicted it, if you look at the context.

The portrait appears in 1993 making it a perfectly okay death date.

More likely the film writers needed something to fill the headlines of the Daily Prophet and when they went out of ideas, skimmed through the second book from which the movie was based and just went with it. I mean, why would a character such as Dippet be alive one moment, dead the next, and without letting us know in some way? If, in the book - or the movie - Harry went to talk to let's say Professor McGonagall and overheard a conversation between staff members indicated Dippet had died, then I would have more truck with the idea. If Harry overheard something like:

Professor Sprout: I say, Minerva, Professor Dumbledore was uncharacteristically quiet at dinner today.

Professor McGonagall: Yes, he just learned that old Professor Dippet passed away. 

And then Harry would ask himself who Dippet was and had an "aha" moment during the trip through the memory lane Tom Riddle's diary.

If Rowling contradict it, I will never dream of taking any piece of throwaway piece of writing on the Daily Prophet as proof of anything unless it is in any shape of form indicated Rowling herself had a hand in deciding it should be there.

Ironyak: Okay, then I would like to hear an actual explonation as to how on earth you can possibly believe she was kidding about that. Look at the question, look at the answer, and tell me, in your own words, how you can possibly think that's the case, because from where I am standing, to say Rowling is kidding about the portraits and not about marrying American, and not be joking or sarcastic, is actually kind of incredible. 

I mean - unless you are suggesting Rowling are to some extent misanthropic and take joy in misleading her fans, why the flying fudge would be joke instead of giving a fan question a straight answer like, I don't know, an actual adult would during an interview? Exactly what did you think she said that she went back on because she digressed? Also - I don't need new evidence, Rowling will never have any reason to give "new" evidence, because this is such a tiny thing among a sea of tiny details post-Deathly Hallows that she apparently just answered and never gave much thought afterwards because she already had told us how the portraits system worked, and probably never thought for a second someone would actually think what she said was "open for interpetation" , when its quite obviously isn't.  

Also, if you don't remove the block, I'll have to ask nicely for someone else to do it. I can see the point of blocking it for a day to put a stop to edit warring, which kind of force the involved parties to make use of the talk page, but a week? That is arguably even more counterproductive than the edit war you sought to prevent/end, which are typically short-lived upon admin intervention. A number of improvements unreleated to this discussion could have been done to the article in that week. Be it people finding grammatical errors, poor phrasing, dead links, references leading to pages no longer there, etc. A block lasting that long without due cause, which this isn't, serves only as an hinderance to improving the articles. Especially considering that if you had blocked it for half and hour and said; "Stop, use the talk page", we would've stopped and used the talk page. And you know it. 

Ninclow (talk) 23:23, February 15, 2018 (UTC)

My interpretation is that she was joking when she said "it’s like British royals. You only get good press if you die in office. Abdication is not acceptable particularly if you marry and American" because she is directly referencing British royal history, particularly Edward VIII. Maybe she was just joking about marrying an American, maybe just about Abdication being not acceptable, and maybe about the whole thing. We really don't know but most of us agree on the interpretation that the kidding part extends across the whole statement as I quoted here. You can disagree, but the current community consensus agrees on this approach.
As for the page protection, I stand by the time frame applied. If you think it is excessive, Feel free to contact Seth or Starstuff as they are the Bureaucrats in charge , but I would only note that protection would not be needed at all if you didn't begin down this path (again) of forcing your opinion over the community consensus and engage in edit-warring by repeatedly undoing other editor's changes. --Ironyak1 (talk) 02:36, February 16, 2018 (UTC)


I don't quite know how to feel about your inability to see the difference between an opinion and a desire for canocinal accuracy, one which is subjective, the other which are objective and contextive, but - sure, if it makes you happy, we can pretend it's the former. Admin. 

Also - you could remove it. You're physically capable of it, and in all honesty, since there'd be no danger of edit warring commencing since now that we're finally actually talking about this, if you refuse, all you accomplish by doint it is giving off the impression you refuse to spite me. Ninclow (talk) 02:46, February 16, 2018 (UTC)

There's only so much people can rehash an unproductive discussion before their patience wears a bit thin. It's been laid out for you multiple times why that quote from JKR was likely a joke about British royal history. Consensus can change through productive discussion. But this isn't a productive discussion at this point. It's one user beating a dead horse. Continuing to press this issue isn't going to change the consensus. It's just going to create further headaches for all involved. Let it rest. Starstuff (Owl me!) 15:01, February 16, 2018 (UTC)

There's only so much people can rehash an unproductive discussion before their patience wears a bit thin. A tad bit pressumptious, don't you think? I mean - I for one would say that there would realistically be more to it than simply pointing out something that don't fit in with a point of view of the precious "vocie of the majority" concept for it to be unproductive. If I shut up and never suggested or committed myself to make another improvement on the wiki ever again, now that would be unproductive.

It's been laid out for you multiple times why that quote from JKR was likely a joke about British royal history. No, it hasn't by any stretch of the imagination. They have explained at long last, what they think the joke is, but not why they think it's a joke. Tell me straight what the heck Rowling would accomplish by joiking about which of the Headmaster portraits gets up on the wall? What on earth do you guys imagine would be the fiigurative punchline to that joke? What humor is it meant to inoke? Joking about a fact of canon to a fan question in that manner makes about as much sense as if Rowling randomly during an interview told everybody and their grandmother that "Arthur Weasley weren't really the father of Molly's children, he was their uncle - Just kidding!". I mean, what  would be point a joke? "Now I tricked my fans, ha, ha"? Since when have Rowling ever done something like that? It's a simple situation, a fan asks Rowling why Snape's portrait didn't come up authomatically, and Rowling does what she always have done without joking when she answers that question: She replies, and draws a parallel to something from real life to explain her point better.

I would like someone  to plase explain to me why, when a fan asks if "Severus Snape’s portrait in the headmaster’s office?" Why the heck Rowling would say that "some have been asking why hasn’t the portrait appeared immediately. It doesn’t. The reason is that the perception in the castle itself and everyone who was in the castle, because Snape kept his secret so well was that he abandoned his post. So all the portraits you see in the headmaster’s study are all headmasters and mistresses who died, it’s like British royals. You only get good press if you die in office. Abdication is not acceptable,​​​​" and JOKE about it? I mean, what the actual FUDGE? Why? What could she possibly achieve other than making people, if we for the sake of discussion say I'd agreed with that opinion, mistake nonsense for fact? And what about the "digress" part? What would she have been digressing about? She gave seventy-seven words worth of exposition about Headmaster portraits and how they end up on the wall in respons to a questions about why Snape's own didn't pop up immediately, so that's not a digression, that was perfectly on topic. Unless you suggest that I know more about how to define and use the word digressionI in a sentence than a British author? I highly doubt that, but your opinion indirectly says so.

And then, when we move on to the other "half" of her reply, the only one that's supposedly not a joke, then she says: "I know, because" if everything before these three words were a joke, and canonically, factually and contextually irrelevant, then what would the "because" come from? It refers to something a past reasoning, and the only one she ever gave us was that only those who died in office got a portrait in the office. But according to "consensus", that's worthless and just a joke, so what exactly did she refer to? What? If only those who die in office (usually) gets a portrait up was a joke, then why would Snape's abandonment of the post be relevant to his portrait getting up or not? He was Headmaster, he died, and if we for the sake of argument say Professor Dippet lived to 1992, how is that any different from what he did? He would've be no more part of the factualty at Hogwarts at the time of his death than Snape was percieved by the castle to be when Voldemort killed him. The only difference is Dippet had his paperwork in order before abandoning his position and leaving Dumbledore to fill the empty space he left behind. "I know Harry would have insisted that Snape’s portrait was on that wall, right beside Dumbledore’s." again, if the statement about only headmasters and headmistresses had been complete and utter hogwash, then why would Harry have to insist about anything? Snape had been a Headmaster, and recognised as such by the castle, as evidenced by the fact that unlike Umbrdige, it did not deny him entry to the Headmaster's study, meaning that the school itself and those in it recognised him as a rightful Headmaster. So if everything said prior to this is not factual, why would Harry have to ask/insist on it being there? It should have been, regardless. Ninclow (talk) 22:44, February 16, 2018 (UTC)

You are taking it far too literal and won't be open to any other interpretation of it. Rowling was responding to a fan who wondered whether the picture of the headteacher who abandoned their post for what everyone thought was to join the Death Eaters, would be put up. She compared what happened to a joke about what happened to Edward VIII, the British royal - Edward abandoned his post too for what people thought was unworthy, and received bad press for it. That's the joke. - Kates39 (talk) 23:41, February 16, 2018 (UTC)
There is no question that Rowling was joking - shes literally says "I'm kidding!". I'm not sure what is so hard to believe about her joking while answering a question, especially given her reputation on twitter for jokes and witty replies. From other sources we know that all the portraits in Dumbledore's office are of dead headmasters & headmistresses and that Harry would make sure Snape's portrait was added. The joke seems to run from "It’s like British royals ..." to "I'm kidding". At least that is how most of us read it and as those interpretations come from first language English speakers from the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., this interpretation seems to be pretty consistent from a variety of perspectives.
As for Dippet "abandoning" his post, this too has been hashed and rehashed. Most people would not consider retirement the same as "abandonment" and given that Dippet was "somewhat feeble" in the 1940s, it doesn't seem unlikely that he would leave (or be forced out if unable to perform his duties) before his death. Neither of these are abandonment as he did not betray his post in the manner of his departure. (Presidents don't abandon their post when a new President is voted in, CEOs don't abandon their post when retiring and handing over the company to new management, etc...) --Ironyak1 (talk) 00:09, February 17, 2018 (UTC)
Edit conflict: They all think it's a joke because everything that comes after "British royals" is the digression. She's talking about Hogwarts Heads and then departs from the subject to make a joke (the workword is "Abdication", which continues with the royal imagery -- that word is formally reserved for a monarch relinquishing his throne; a Headmaster does not abdicate, they resign). And, unlike what you say, JKR did (and does) reply loads of time in a tongue-in-cheek manner (i.e. the time she suggested "Harry Potter and the Mystic Kettle of Nackledirk" was a possible title for Book 7, the time she told us Professor Bicycle would be a key figure in books six and seven and, of course, the perennial favourite Giant Squid is actually Godric Gryffindor.
If you parse the sentence that follows the joke, you'll see that the "because" does not refer to the sentence before ("I know, because I thought this one through, because it was very important to me, I know Harry would have insisted that Snape’s portrait was on that wall, right beside Dumbledore's" ought to be read "I know that Harry would have insisted, because I thought this one though"), so there's not much of an argument there.
And to suggest abandonment means the same as resignation, well, that's entirely questionable. There's a world of difference between a discharge and a dersertion. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 00:20, February 17, 2018 (UTC)

Kates39:

You are taking it far too literal

You mean the way it was obviously intended to be taken?

and won't be open to any other interpretation of it.

"other intepretation" is a wrong assessment of my argument. I don't have another "intepretation", I merely read what Rowling was asked and what she replied and takes it for what it is.

Rowling was responding to a fan who wondered whether the picture of the headteacher who abandoned their post for what everyone thought was to join the Death Eaters, would be put up.

No she was not. Please read the question again, when asked if Snape got a portrait, she explained that another fan asked why Snape's portrait did not immediately join the others after he died, and she explained that it was like the British royals in the sense that "you don't get good press if you don't die in office". Death Eaters or the reasons around why Snape quote on quote "abandoned" his post never came into play or were implied relevant to the question..

She compared what happened to a joke about what happened to Edward VIII, the British royal - Edward abandoned his post too for what people thought was unworthy, and received bad press for it. That's the joke.

So you agree then? The comparison was that since Snape abandoned his post for an "unworthy" cause, or was believed to have, his portrait didn't get up immediately and recquired Harry's insistance because you don't get good press unless you die in office, aka - no dying in office, no portrait in the office. Unless you are Snape, the exception.

Ironyak1

There is no question that Rowling was joking - shes literally says "I'm kidding!".

I never said Rowling did not make a joke, the question is - what joke did she make.

I'm not sure what is so hard to believe about her joking while answering a question, especially given her reputation on twitter for jokes and witty replies.

It's not, what is hard to believe is that she would gives us a seventy-seven word explonation on the rules for getting a Headmaster portrait on the wall and then that being the joke. 

From other sources we know that all the portraits in Dumbledore's office are of dead headmasters & headmistresses and that Harry would make sure Snape's portrait was added.

I never said that wasn't the case, just to have it out there.

The joke seems to run from "It’s like British royals ..."

That is what we call a metaphor/parallel. Kind of someone telling me after running that I swet like a pig, for example.

At least that is how most of us read it and as those interpretations come from first language English speakers from the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., this interpretation seems to be pretty consistent from a variety of perspectives.

Or - you know, one collective perceptive.

As for Dippet "abandoning" his post, this too has been hashed and rehashed. Most people would not consider retirement the same as "abandonment" and given that Dippet was "somewhat feeble" in the 1940s, it doesn't seem unlikely that he would leave (or be forced out if unable to perform his duties) before his death.

"You don't get good press unless you die in office." Say it with me now: "You don't get good press unless you die in office", "You don't get good press unless you die in office", "You don't get good press unless you die in office"...

Seth Cooper:

They all think it's a joke because everything that comes after "British royals" is the digression. She's talking about Hogwarts Heads and then departs from the subject to make a joke (the workword is "Abdication", which continues with the royal imagery -- that word is formally reserved for a monarch relinquishing his throne; a Headmaster does not abdicate, they resign).

And is it the case the British royals have their portraits added to a royal gallery of sorts only if they die in office? If so, doesn't this sound more like she was drawing a parellel? Since the question she referred to was why "Snape didn't get a portrait immediately", and her reply was: "He wouldn't. [...] it's like the British royals, you only get good press if you die in office"? Abdication, given the context sounds very much like a methaphor for retirement..The way I read it is thst she talks about the Hogwarts Heads, she draws a parallel to British royals and she abandons the paralel by going to to referring to a specific member of the royal family, digressing from the paralel/metaphor and by extension, the Hogwarts Head.

And, unlike what you say, JKR did (and does) reply loads of time in a tongue-in-cheek manner (i.e. the time she suggested "Harry Potter and the Mystic Kettle of Nackledirk" was a possible title for Book 7, the time she told us Professor Bicycle would be a key figure in books six and seven and, of course, the perennial favourite Giant Squid is actually Godric Gryffindor.

Yeah, but - unlike the topic of our discussion, those times she left no room for intepretation. There was none to be made, everybody and their grandma knew she was joking because she made it obvious. This time, she didn't. And why would she be intentionally amibious about a joke and not make sure her fans knew what she meant? Unless, of course, it wasn't a joke.She explained a fact of her universe by drawing parallels to something we know from real life, like she usually does to make it easier to understand, just like she compares the ICW with the UN, and threw a joke into the mix.

If you parse the sentence that follows the joke, you'll see that the "because" does not refer to the sentence before ("I know, because I thought this one through, because it was very important to me, I know Harry would have insisted that Snape’s portrait was on that wall, right beside Dumbledore's" ought to be read "I know that Harry would have insisted, because I thought this one though"), so there's not much of an argument there.

Only if we assume we are in a position to dictate what Rowling meant or did not mean by using the word "because" instead of looking at the whole sentence.

And to suggest abandonment means the same as resignation, well, that's entirely questionable. There's a world of difference between a discharge and a dersertion.

Formally speaking, but when you are discharged, you are no longer a part of the facualty, just like you aren't when you desert it. And again, she refers to a question about why Snape "didn't get a portrait immediately", and replied by using the wording: "It's like the British royals: You don't get good press unless you die in office". Now, why would she answer a straight question with something that straightforward as far as rules for putting up portraits on a wall goes and then joke about it without making it clear that - that's the joke? Ninclow (talk) 02:10, February 17, 2018 (UTC)

There is no such gallery, that I know of. The British monarchs have always commissioned several portraits of themselves (indeed, even Edward VIII himself had an official Coronation portrait -- and he abdicated before his Coronation even took place).
As for we "being in a position to dictate what Rowling meant" I suggest you read the full sentence. It's a complex sentence; parse it. The main clause is "I know [that] Harry would have insisted that Snape's portrait was on that wall, right beside Dumbledore's", the subordinate clause is "because I thought this one through, because it was very important to me". It has nothing to do with anything she had said before.
I can think of no reason why the current Head is to be deprived of the advice of someone who retired with no dishonor to their name. The answer Rowling gives to the question "why hasn't Snape's portrait appeared immediately?" is that the castle itself perceived Snape had abandoned his post, Rowling explains that much. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 02:57, February 17, 2018 (UTC)

So - there is no difference between Headmasters and Headmistresses who sees their position as just a job and takes it, works for a few years and retire, as opposed to those who are so dedicated to the school that they choose to serve until the very end? That's where the distinction is. I ask again, the school is more than a thousand years old, how would Dumbledore be able to fit the portrait of every single of his successors on the walls? In the simplest possible terms, he couldn't, Not without the room being about the size of the Great Hall with portrait lining every inch of it, or maybe even bigger. Ninclow (talk) 03:21, February 17, 2018 (UTC)

The school is appproximately 1000 years old. If you assume an average tenure of 20 or 25 years, for the sake of argument (an approximation based on Dippet's, Dumbledore's, and McGonagall's tenures), there would only be about 40-50 portraits, which is not an extraordinary number.
And yes, I do think retiring with just cause is honourable; I wouldn't exactly say someone was "being dedicated" if they refused to retire whenever the school would be better off with someone replacing them (i.e. an elderly or bed-ridden Headmaster who was no longer able to properly run the school refusing to retire would be worse for the school than someone just replacing him). --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 04:11, February 17, 2018 (UTC)


And tell me, where in canon have you ever seen a an old wizard be bedridden or incapable of doing a job due to old age? Or struggle with things that would or could ail Muggles, like demenzia and such? Ninclow (talk) 22:14, February 17, 2018 (UTC)

We are introduced to a St. Mungo's ward for permanently-incapacitated wizards in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, there are repeated references to Rita Skeeter having taken advantage of Bathilda Bagshot's senility. We also know of several incapacitating wizarding ilnesses. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 01:39, February 18, 2018 (UTC)

Took advantage of Bathilda's lack of immunity to the effect of veritaserum, more like. Also, the only "evidence" we have of Bathilda being senile is Rita Skeeter, an alleged source of support that's questionable at best. Also, the permanently-incapicated wizards is a mute point. If Dippet, given how old he was than what is average for wizards, if he was going to go senile, it'd have happened long before Tom Riddle began attending the school.

I ask again, where in canon have you seen something as mundane and trivial as simple old age be a definitive obstacle for a witch or wizard to do - well, anything, really? Ninclow (talk) 20:55, February 18, 2018 (UTC)

At the wedding, Auntie Muriel says Bathilda's "quite gaga these days". And Elphias Doge doesn't seem to deny the possibility of wizarding senility ("If that is so, it is even more dishonorable for Skeeter to have taken advantage of her and no reliance can be placed on anything Bathilda may have said!" -- note that it's not important if Bathilda herself was senile, but that no one seems to think that the possibility is out of the ordinary). At any rate, it is most certainly not a moot point; the onset of dementia is certainly variable and multifactorial (there's early-onset dementia, vascular dementia, senile dementia, you name it -- there's not a set age for it) and I'm not exactly sure why you rule out permanent incapacitation by other -- wizarding -- means, as we see in St Mungo's (could you imagine the school being run for several years by an Headmaster who's been permanently Obliviated like Lockhart?). --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 21:48, February 18, 2018 (UTC)


No, but that's also beside the point. We're not discussing the potential dismissa or forced resignitions of Headmasters and Headmistress who have some kind of health issue, we're talking about the very obvious difference between the wise and revered heads of Hogwarts, (most of them at least, Phineas Nigellus less so), who dedicate their lives to serving the school as opposed to people who come and go by choice and resign when they're fed up/bored with the job.Actually, the portrait of Phineas Nigellus Black in the office speak in favor for the concept of "good press only if you die in office". Ninclow (talk) 23:41, February 18, 2018 (UTC)

I was explaining exactly how a resignation might not be just because a Headmaster was, as you put it, fed up or bored with the job, but the point appears to have been lost. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 23:46, February 18, 2018 (UTC)

And I see likewise you failed to understand the significance of Professor Black's portrat in all of this. Ninclow (talk) 00:55, February 19, 2018 (UTC)

Yes, I must day I did. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 01:00, February 19, 2018 (UTC)


No decent Headmaster or Headmistress, or even half-way decent, would have wanted portraits of people like Professor Black and Professor Burke on their wall to advise them. They are petty, close-minded, prejudiced and biased, and the former don't even like his job, meaning any advise his portrait could give would be tainted by this, and ultimately be anything but productive in any stretch of the imagination. Before you mention Dumbledore, any argument you can come up with for him being "the best" and still keeping it is invalidated by him using it for the Order of the Phoenix and to keep an eye on Harry, and, possibly, even the House of Black in a time when they supported Voldemort. If any old schoolmaster got their portrait up, it would only be a traditional thing, and the Headmaster in question would be free to change it as they saw fit. However, it would sense for them to be there if the living counterpart earned the right to have it there. How? By dying in office, the only way you get "good press" aka, a portrait on the wall. If this is an old arrangement from way back, it would be precious little any Head of Hogwarts could say or do about it except complain futily. Ninclow (talk) 02:20, February 19, 2018 (UTC)

I'm afraid I couldn't follow your argument at all. It is a tradition (that is, in fact, precisely the word Rowling uses for it on Pottermore), and no mention is ever made of a Headmaster having to earn a right to anything. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 02:39, February 19, 2018 (UTC)


Pottermore said that it was traditional for Hogwarts Heads to be painted, not that it was traditional for it to end up in the Headmaster office, a notion contradicted by, again, the most-likely-to-have-been metaphor "you only get good press if you die in office" comment. Ninclow (talk) 02:54, February 19, 2018 (UTC)

Need it be pointed out, again, that that the "you only get good press if you die in office" quote is likely a joke that's not to be taken literally? And that given that that tier-one source is subject to differing interpretations, other canon sources (Harry Potter Limited Edition and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (film)) can (and are to be) taken into account? All this repetition is tedious to the extreme. --  Seth Cooper  owl post! 03:16, February 19, 2018 (UTC)
 I could say the same. At the very least my own argument isn't based purely on speculation... Ninclow (talk) 05:38, February 19, 2018 (UTC)