Dumbledores letters to petunia

Arwan

Time Turners
"So: Dumbledore is referring to his last letter, which means, of course, the letter he left upon the Dursleys' doorstep when Harry was one year old. But why then (you may well ask) did he not just say 'remember my letter?' Why did he say my last letter? Why, obviously because there were letters before that…"

This is an answer JKR gave to the questions about the letter Dumbledore sent to Petunia I for one thought It meant letters he had sent after Harry was left there. But this to me sound like he had been in contact with her prior to Harry even arriving there.
Any thoughts?
 

serophis

Time Turners
I was always under the impression that Dumbledore had hid the Potters in Godric's Hollow. He knew of the Prophecy, and I believe that he did not want it to have to carry itself out; remember he says that there are many prophecies that never come to pass.

The thing with Voldemort, though, is that he doesn't just kill you; he destroys everything you ever knew and loved. I believe that the reason he had the cloak at Godric's hollow is that Dumbledore had Aunt Petunia with him. Remember that when Harry looked at Petunia and simply said, "He's back," Petunia was horrified. This kind of reaction was very different from the anger or bitterness she normally had for Lily...this was pure and utter fear. I believe that DD was trying to get Petunia into hiding (perhaps along with the rest of the Dursleys), so that Voldemort could not find any of them.

Of course DD could not anticipate Pettigrew's willingness to give up the secret of their location to Voldemort...and I believe that Dumbledore and Petunia walked in the door to see the dead bodies of James and Lily Potter. I think that's why she hates Harry and fears Voldemort: Her last memories of Lily included her seeing her lifeless body there, with Harry completely untouched (save for the scar), and knowing she quite possibly came within hours of meeting the same end.

I think the letters sent involved information of where Dumbledore and Petunia would meey in order to smuggle her and possibly her family to safety (I say possibly because as a wizard so focused on bloodlines, Voldemort may have found Vernon irrelevant as he was not blood, although Dudley was. However, the fact that he killed the woman his muggle father was with after leaving his mother, we know that Voldemort is still not above killling one who may seem even a hint of a threat).
 

Arwan

Time Turners
I don't believe that Petunia was there the night of the attack. In SS/PS in the very first chapter the morning they woke up it says Mrs. Dursley gossiped away happily as she wrestled a screaming Dudley into his Highchair. This suggesting she could not have witnessed the attack or bodies, as she was not upset or nervous. Later that day when Vernon came home it says Mrs. Dursley had had a nice, normal day. which suggests she still has no idea of what had happened to her sister. The reaction she had in reguard to the Dementors I think is from some event when she was younger or story Lily told her.
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
Clearly Petunia had contacts with the magical world that she has tried to hide not only from Harry but also from Vernon and Dudley. JKR has said that Dumbledore had communicated with Petunia, by letter, prior to Harry going to Privet Drive. Although this is assumed to be in regard to Harry it does not actually make sense for this to be the case. Had the communication been about Harry and the possibility of him being cared for by the Dursley family why would Dumbledore have left Harry on the doorstep, accompanied by a letter, waiting to be found? No Dumbledore and Petunia had some other interest in common.

We know that Petunia learned of dementors from “that boy” but we don’t know who that boy is, we assume that it is James but we don’t know.

We know that Dudley is no more than he seems, JKR has said that.

We know that there is more to Petunia than meets the eye.

I am sure that I have read somewhere that JKR has confirmed that Dudley is the child of Petunia and Vernon, but I cannot confirm that.

We know that Petunia is the nosiest woman in the world but could she also be the most frightened? Is she always waiting for the possibility that there will be a knock on the door that will reveal another part of her life? After all when Vernon intended to expel Harry from the house, in OotP, she said that Harry must stay but did not give a proper explanation to Vernon.
 
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jimbo716

Time Turners
There's just too much to properly process. Is Privet Drive actually pronounced the same as PRIVATE? (caps for emphasis, not emotion) Why the name "Godric's Hollow"? That's just too coincidental, that HP lives in two Gryffindor houses. How private is Privet? Black found it. The night bus found it. The elf found it. Hagrid even found it. Who else has been there? Is DD protecting the Dursley's or maybe just paying for the house, etc..? It's late and I'm tired.
 

kashlie

afraid of my own shadow
Hagrid hasn't been to Privet drive, and it is not a secret that Harry lives there. Dobby found Harry, the Knight bus found Harry away from Privet Drive, as did Sirius, but the protection Lily left was not a secret hiding place for Harry, but a blood protection.

If Dumbledore was in touch with Petunia before Harry was left with her, it may have been discussed between he, Petunia and Lily, that if something should ever happen, as the last remaining relative of Harry's, Petunia would get custody.
She wasn't terrified when she found out Voldemort was back. It was at that point that Harry realised he was not the only who knew what it could mean, and truly appreciated that Petunia was his mother's sister.
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
Sorry Kash I have to disagree on most points.

Hagrid has been to Privet Drive even if he has not been inside the Dursley's house.

PS/SS said:
A low rumbling sound had broken the silence around them. It grew steadily louder as they looked up and down the street for some sign of a headlight; it swelled to a roar as they both looked up at the sky -- and a huge motorcycle fell out of the air and landed on the road in front of them.
If the motorcycle was huge, it was nothing to the man sitting astride it. He was almost twice as tall as a normal man and at least five times as wide. He looked simply too big to be allowed, and so wild - long tangles of bushy black hair and beard hid most of his face, he had hands the size of trash can lids, and his feet in their leather boots were like baby dolphins. In his vast, muscular arms he was holding a bundle of blankets.
"Hagrid," said Dumbledore, sounding relieved. "At last. And where did you get that motorcycle?"
"Borrowed it, Professor Dumbledore, sir," said the giant, climbing carefully off the motorcycle as he spoke. "Young Sirius Black lent it to me. I've got him, sir."

James and Lily wanted Sirius to look after Harry should anything happen to them not Petunia. Admittedly ha wasn’t around at the time but I cannot imagine an agreement about custody between Lily & James and Petunia and Vernon.

Sirius. PoA said:
"Yes...," said Black. "But I'm also -- I don't know if anyone ever told you -- I'm your godfather."
"Yeah, I knew that," said Harry.
"Well... your parents appointed me your guardian," said Black stiffly. "If anything happened to them..."

I think that Petunia was frightened.

OotP said:
'Back?' whispered Aunt Petunia.
She was looking at Harry as she had never looked at him before. And all of a sudden, for the very first time in his life, Harry fully appreciated that Aunt Petunia was his mother's sister. He could not have said why this hit him so very powerfully at this moment. All he knew was that he was not the only person in the room who had an inkling of what Lord Voldemort being back might mean. Aunt Petunia had never in her life looked at him like that before. Her large, pale eyes (so unlike her sister's) were not narrowed in dislike or anger, they were wide and fearful. The furious pretence that Aunt Petunia had maintained all Harry's life - that there was no magic and no world other than the world she inhabited with Uncle Vernon – seemed to have fallen away.
'Yes,' Harry said, talking directly to Aunt Petunia now. 'He came back a month ago. I saw him.'
Her hands found Dudley's massive leather-clad shoulders and clutched them.

I agree that Privet Drive is not Private, no fidelius charm, not unplottable etc.

jimbo716. The i in Privet as sounded as in "in" whereas the i in Private is sounded as in "life" They are not pronounced the same in UK English.
 
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cagedcactus

Sherbet Lemon
Good way of explaining it GB.
I agree. Harry is not protected there under Fidelius or something. He is protected by the connection of his aunt to his mother. The blood protection.
I think we will learn more about "there is more to Petunia than meets the eye" in DH. But that aside, I dont think anyone would have a problem spotting the house itself. It is the Harry they can not harm.
I am sure that DD and Petunia have exchanged more than told to us. Petunia being the sister of Lily, knows a lot about wizarding world than she lets on.
 

Arwan

Time Turners
Thanks Glumbumble for the new thought, maybe Petunia is not checking up on her neighbours but on constant alert that the past will come walking down the street. This also lead me to another thougth, of all the people in the neighbourhood why did they befriend for lack of a better word Mrs.Figg who would have to be the least normal person in the neighbourhood. Perhaps she was aware of what she really was!
 

secret seeker

The Half Blood Prince
I think that the letters Dumbledore sent Petunia, were to tell her what to do in case he died.
I think that Harry will tell the Dursleys that he's not going back to Hogwarts, and why, because of D.D.s death.
Petunia will tell Harry that Dumbledore had been writing to her, and give him the letters/info, in the letters.

What amazes me, is how Petunia managed to hide it from Harry, Vernon, and Dudley?.
What if Dumbledore didn't send his letters by owl? ... he could have used other means of sending them to ensure secrecy.
 

serophis

Time Turners
Thanks for the canon support, Glumbumble...I'm at work now so all my sources are at home (except for HBP which I won't part with for the next six months or so). Yeah, it seems as though Petunia was very much 'in the know' about what being in a world with Voldemort really meant. I mean, come on...Voldemort killed James and Lily in his quest to kill Harry. I myself speculate that neither of them had to die (Especially Lily, see the conversation of Voldy and Harry at the end of PS/SS), but Petunia knows that the two of them died as a result of Voldemort's wrath. And I think that she probably has seen much more of the wizarding world than she lets on.

Perhaps she was a--what do you call it?--potential wizard who refused her letter...I know that there's a term for that, but can't remember it...maybe it was decided that she wouldn't learn magic, but when Lily came along they decided they might as well just give in, and she was bitter for that. Although I don't personally believe this theory myself, but there has to be *something* about her that we haven't noticed...I just can't quite see it although I know it's there.
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
Arwan, there is another thread on Petunia entitled "What is she" there are some interesting reads on it. below is a contribution of mine that covers the point you have made.

Why would Petunia know Mrs. Figg? Apart from Harry Mrs. Figg must have been the most un-Dursleyish resident of Little Whinging. So how would they know each other and why would Harry be left there rather than be taken on outings for Dudley’s birthday or taken on holidays. I know Mrs. Figg says that “I'm sorry I gave you such a miserable time, Harry, but the Dursleys would never have let you come if they'd thought you enjoyed it.” But this could have been half cover up and half for Uncle Vernon’s consumption.

Quote:
`While you can still call home the place where your mother's blood dwells, there you cannot be touched or harmed by Voldemort. He shed her blood, but it lives on in you and her sister. Her blood became your refuge. You need return there only once a year, but as long as you can still call it home, whilst you are there he cannot hurt you.

Quote:
`You sent that Howler. You told her to remember it was your voice
`I thought,' said Dumbledore, inclining his head slightly, `that she might need reminding of the pact she had sealed by taking you. I suspected the Dementor attack might have awoken her to the dangers of having you as a surrogate son.'
`It did,' said Harry quietly. `Well my uncle more than her. He wanted to chuck me out, but after the Howler came she - she said I had to stay'

We know that Harry was protected while he was at his Aunt’s home but what about holidays and days out? Did the protection hold then or was Petunia frightened to take Harry away from the house. Was Harry left with Mrs. Figg because she could contact Dumbledore?

Dumbledore says in OotP

Quote:
I defy anyone who has watched you as I have - and I have watched you more closely than you can have imagined

Perhaps it was through, or with the support of, Mrs. Figg that Dumbledore watched so closely over Harry. Even when she had broken her leg she still seemed to be keeping an eye on Harry, and got run over by Dudley for her trouble.

In many ways Petunia is a Snape like figure. She seems to dislike Harry and despised his parents but does all she has to to protect him.
 

Arwan

Time Turners
Once again Glumbumble you have got me thinking. Perhaps I can leech off your wisdom once again and ask your thought on the blood line protection. Should this theory still hold true now that Voldemort has Harry/Lily/Petunia's blood now in him and he is able to touch him without harm to himself?

Thanks for the tip about "What is she" I will check this out next. As well as I am intrigued about your Snape/ Petunia reference.
 

Arwan

Time Turners
Secret Seeker, I like that idea about Dumbledore leaving letters with Petunia for Harry but I'm not sure it would be something he would have sent before Harry arrived.
 

serophis

Time Turners
Secret Seeker, I like that idea about Dumbledore leaving letters with Petunia for Harry but I'm not sure it would be something he would have sent before Harry arrived.

I agree. Remember the last visit between Voldemort and Dumbledore within Dumbledore's office (HBP, chapter 18 if I remember correctly)? Voldemort even tells Dumbledore that he seems very intuitive in his ability to know everything (including the existance of the Death Eaters and which ones were located near the castle)...I think that had Dumbledore seen a potential death coming, he would have done everything he could to avoid it. Perhaps that is why he came upon the Hollow so quickly: he knew that something was up.

But no, I don't think that Dumbledore would take the time to set up Harry's future *just in case James and Lily dies, and Peter and Sirius are otherwise unable to care for the kid*; that's a bit *too* intuitive, and if he did have that kind of knowledge, surely he would have the know-how to stop it from happening in the first place.
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
If there was any agreement that Harry would move to the Dursley's why would he be left on the doorstep with a letter attached to him?

Why did Dumbledore say, of the Howler, "`I thought,' said Dumbledore, inclining his head slightly, `that she might need reminding of the pact she had sealed by taking you." if the agreement had been made long ago?

Also "pact" seems to me to indicate that Petunia gets something in return. I wonder what that is?
 

serophis

Time Turners
Didn't Dumbledore use his own magic to expand the meaning of the countercharm in the firstplace, so that it protected Harry until he came of age, providing he went "home" once a year?

If that is the case, perhaps Dumbledore offered her protection in return for her keeping Potter...if that is the case, it may be why she won't let Harry leave for good...because she knows that the second that Privet Drive is no longer Harry's "home" anymore, her protection and that of her family aburptly ends.
 

serophis

Time Turners
Well we know for sure that the protection ends when Harry was seventeen...but I could have sworn that I read somewhere that Dumbledore expanded the terms of the protection somehow.
 

Mr_Bandman

Time Turners
Again, I keep dwelling on how surprised Petunia seemed in HBP when she learns that wizards come of age at 17 instead of 18.....there has to be something to that, and----I know, I know---SHE said there was nothing more to Dudley----I can't help thinking that the connection has to do with protecting her immediate family from Voldemort....DD describes the arrangement he has with Petunia as a "pact".....surely Petunia did not agree to keep Harry without some form of compensation, and if that is the case, it is most certainly an arrangement of which Vernon is not aware. So what is it? What are the terms of the deal between DD & P? I believe the answer to that question is very important.

I may be reading too much into this, but I took her surprise to be connected to the fact that Dudley is older than Harry. If wizards come of age at 17 & muggles at 18, what difference would it make to her? Unless her pact does involve the protection of her family from Voldemort until Harry comes of age (again---what difference would Voldemort mean to her & her family?) OR, as I have supposed before in a thread, I think, titled Dudley's magic, (I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW WHAT JKR SAID ABOUT DUDLEY----I'm just throwing this out there----throw it under the bus if you feel the need) Dudley is the one who will do magic "relatively" late in life. It would open so many beautiful possibilities for wrapping up the Dursley part of the storyline.

Ideas?
 
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