One of the most iconic lines in the Harry Potter series is when Severus Snape says “always” in response to Albus Dumbledore’s question about his love for Lily Potter. This simple word has become a symbol of Snape’s undying love for Harry Potter’s mother and has captured the hearts of fans around the world.
But why did Snape say “always”? The answer lies in his deep and complex relationship with Lily, which began when they were children and continued until her tragic death. Snape was obsessed with Lily, and his Patronus took the same shape as hers, a doe, as a symbol of his love for her. When Dumbledore saw this, he asked Snape if he still loved Lily, to which Snape replied “always,” revealing the depth of his feelings for her.
While Snape’s love for Lily was unrequited, it played a significant role in the series, ultimately leading to his redemption and sacrifice. Understanding the significance of this line is key to understanding Snape’s character and his motivations throughout the series.
Background on Snape and Lily
Severus Snape and Lily Evans were childhood friends who met on the playground before they started attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. They both came from impoverished backgrounds and found solace in each other’s company. However, their friendship became strained when they were sorted into different houses at Hogwarts. Lily was sorted into Gryffindor, while Snape was sorted into Slytherin.
Snape’s fascination with the Dark Arts and his association with Slytherin’s pure-blood ideology caused a rift between him and Lily. She disapproved of his interests and his friends, particularly his friendship with future Death Eater, Avery. Despite their differences, Snape remained infatuated with Lily throughout their time at Hogwarts.
After graduating from Hogwarts, Lily married James Potter, and Snape joined the Death Eaters, a group of dark wizards and witches who supported Lord Voldemort. However, Snape’s love for Lily never waned, and he became a double agent, working as a spy for Dumbledore and the Order of the Phoenix to protect Lily and her family from Voldemort’s wrath.
When Voldemort discovered the prophecy that stated that either Harry Potter or Neville Longbottom would be the one to defeat him, he set out to kill both children. Snape begged Voldemort to spare Lily’s life, but Voldemort refused. In a desperate attempt to save her, Snape went to Dumbledore and begged him to protect her. Dumbledore agreed, and Lily was placed under the Fidelius Charm, which hid her and her family from Voldemort.
The Scene in the Movie
In the movie adaptation of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, the scene where Snape says “Always” is a poignant and emotional moment. The scene takes place in the Pensieve, where Harry is watching Snape’s memories. The memory is of Snape talking to Dumbledore about his love for Lily Potter. Dumbledore asks Snape if he still loves Lily, to which Snape responds with “Always”.
The scene is significant because it reveals the depth of Snape’s love for Lily and his loyalty to her, even after her death. It also sheds light on Snape’s character and his motivations throughout the series. The scene is beautifully shot and Alan Rickman’s performance as Snape is particularly moving.
The “Always” scene has become one of the most iconic moments in the Harry Potter series and has spawned countless memes and fan theories.
Interpretations of ‘Always’
When Snape says ‘always’ in the Harry Potter series, he is referring to his undying love for Lily Potter, Harry’s mother. Snape’s love for Lily is one of the most significant themes in the series, and it is evident throughout the books. Snape’s love for Lily is the reason he protects Harry, and it is the reason he ultimately sacrifices himself for the greater good.
Some people even suggest that Snape loved Harry as well as Lily. Mainly due to the extreme lengths he goes to in order to save the Boy Who Lived. Not to mention the fact that he literally gives his life for the cause.
Another interpretation of Snape’s ‘always’ is the importance of memories. Throughout the series, memories play a significant role in understanding the characters and their motivations. Snape’s memories of Lily are what drive him to protect Harry, and they are what ultimately lead to his redemption. Memories are a powerful tool in the series, and they are a reminder that our past experiences shape who we are and who we become.
Snape’s ‘always’ also represents the idea of eternal love. Snape’s love for Lily is unwavering, even after her death. It is a testament to the power of love and the lengths that people will go to for the ones they love. Snape’s love for Lily is also an example of how love can transcend death and continue to impact our lives long after someone is gone.
Snape’s famous line, “Always,” is a poignant moment in the Harry Potter series that has captured the hearts of fans worldwide. It speaks to the enduring love that Snape had for Lily Potter, and the sacrifices he made to protect her son, Harry. The line has become a symbol of Snape’s character, representing his loyalty, bravery, and unwavering devotion.
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While the reasons behind Snape’s love for Lily may be complex and multifaceted, there is no denying the impact that it had on the series as a whole. Snape’s love for Lily ultimately led him to switch sides and become a double agent, working tirelessly to protect Harry and bring down Voldemort.
Despite his often prickly demeanor and questionable actions, Snape remains one of the most beloved characters in the Harry Potter universe. His character arc is a testament to the power of love and the lengths that people will go to protect those they care about.
In the end, Snape’s story is a reminder that even the most flawed and complicated individuals can have a profound impact on the world around them. His legacy lives on through his actions and his words, including the iconic line that will forever be associated with his character: “Always.”