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Character Discussion: Gilderoy Lockhart

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  • Hans Rieuwers
    As I’ve pointed out in my essay, there are some remarkable similarities between The Alchemical Wedding of Christian Rosycross and Harry Potter. For example
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 29, 2005

      As I’ve pointed out in my essay, there are some remarkable similarities between The Alchemical Wedding of Christian Rosycross and Harry Potter. For example when Christian Rosycross enters the castle he sits down at a meal served up by invisible servants, just as happens at Hogwarts. And just like Harry, he sees candle-lights suspended in mid-air. Very soon after their entrance into the hall both parties are tested; Christian Rosycross by seven weights, Harry by the sorting hat.


      I want to draw your attention to the behaviour of some of the people whom Christian Rosycross observes just after he enters the hall.


      In this hall there was a multitude of guests, emperors, kings, princes and lords, noble and ignoble, rich and poor, and all kinds of rabble.[…]

      When the braggarts had satisfied their hunger somewhat and the wine had taken away their restraint, they began to vaunt and boast. One would prove this, another that, and the most sorry idiot made the loudest noise.[…]

      They boasted about deeds which neither Sampson, nor Hercules with all their strength could ever have achieved. The one would discharge Atlas of his burden, another would draw forth the three-headed Cerberus (HP!) from Hell.[…]

      There was one who heard the rustling of the heavens; a second said he could see Plato’s ideas, and a third could number Democritus’s atoms. There were also not a few pretenders to perpetual motion. Many of them had a good understanding but unfortunately assumed too much of themselves.


      Does this bring anyone to mind?


      Later in The Alchemical Wedding these people are called “makers of the Lapis Spitalauficus”. This is an imitation of the Lapis Philosophicus, the Philosopher’s Stone.


      This is what I think Gilderoy Lockhart symbolises. He is the seeker who enters the School of Liberation with the motive of using it for his own selfish gain. He tries to impress everyone with his false Philosopher’s Stone. He uses Harry to further his own ends and we learn that he in fact can’t do anything that he claims he can do in his books. But his end is the same as the false seekers in The Alchemical Wedding: he loses his memory. In Harry Potter Gilderoy (“gold-leaf covered king”) blows out his own memory by chanting “obliviate” with Ron’s defective wand. In The Alchemical Wedding these false seekers are given the “oblivionis haustus”, the draught of oblivion.


      The maker of the Lapis spitalauficus has his hart locked up, while Harry’s hart is what saves him and Sirius.


      Jo, the depth of your work is unfathomable.




      I have another lovely commission for some of you. Is there any one among you who has plenty of time on their hands and would like to perform a valuable service for us all?


      There are so many parallels between Harry Potter and The Alchemical Wedding that it’s absolutely amazing and I think this needs pointing out to the world. Would any of you like to make a list? The Alchemical Wedding is on the website and in the group files, so that would be easy. I think the list would contain different categories. One of these would be unusual words and names that occur in both works, for example unicorn, griffin, Paracelsus, phoenix, etc. Another category would be events that are similar, such as the invisible servants at the table, the suspended candles, the “oblivion” as mentioned above, etc. A third might be more hidden references, such as Cerberus, mentioned above, which is equivalent to Fluffy.


      Anyway, please have a think about it. All it needs is interest, intelligence, and plenty of time. Let me know if you’d like to do this, because if there are two of you who want to do it I’ll put you in touch with each other. Please email me privately.


      By the way, I received lovely encouraging emails from two of you with a list of favourite posts. My profound thanks!

      "If I talk too freely about whether I believe in God I think the intelligent reader, whether 10 or 60, will be able to guess what's coming in the books." JK Rowling
      Hans Rieuwers

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