Origin of Invisibility Cloak

Tinkerbell

Time Turners
Am currently listening to PS/SS on CD book and got to Harry's first Christmas at Hogwarts when he received the invisibility cloak.

We know that it once belonged to James, but have we ever been given any further background to the cloak - such as where did James get it from? We know that they are considered rare, but are they 'tracked' in the same way that animagi are registered? Are they articles that could be considered as 'powerful', or at least can be used for good as well as bad?
 

Boing

Pops in randomly
Interesting thoughts - as soon as I saw the name of the thread, I immediately started wondering why James left it in Dumbledore's possession . . . wouldn't he have needed an invisibility cloak all the more when in hiding? Why did he give it to Dumbledore?

I don't think there is a registry of cloaks for some reason, but there is nothing to back that up.

Also, we have been led to believe that perhaps some animals/beasts/etc. can see through the cloak - perhaps Mrs. Norris, maybe Crookshanks . . .
 

Tonks

Unspeakable
I also agree that I don't think there is a register for cloaks, but there could be, there's just nothing to argue for or against that point.

I have a feeling the cloak may have been handed down from James' father or mother, or perhaps James' somehow came into its possession for work (if he is indeed an Auror, this would be useful; we know Moody has one).

I think that James may have left this in the care of Dumbledore, because there was really no need for him to have it in hiding. Yes, he was in hiding, but if he and Lily were under the Fidelus Curse then that basically granted them full security unless their Secret Keeper revealed their secret, which they obviously had no idea he was going to. He would really have no need to be invisible I don't think.

Although, that's almost a random reason why he left it with Dumbledore. Maybe he left it with him because he knew that he would have no use for it, but Dumbledore could make use of it (or, more realistically, the Order, because Dumbledore can make himself invisible without Invisibility Cloaks).

Not sure if James would have purposely left it with Dumbledore just so that Harry could have it one day, because there would have been no way James could've known what was going to happen.
 

Kingsley

Time Turners
This is something I have always been split in two on

First scenario--if James purposely gave it to Dumbledore he could have known that something was going to happen eventually and left it as sort of a will-
-but that would lead me to wonder where Dumbledore was to make sure nothing did happen to James and Lily--it is his order after all--ensure some protection

Second scenario--James didnt leave it in Dumbledore's possesion--there is nothing that says Hagrid didnt find the cloak with Harry and give it back to Dumbledore, such a rare item seems like it could have been in Dumbledore's possesion first but he lent it to his best agent :cool:
 

Alz

Administrator
Staff member
I always thought of the cloak a bit like the Marauders map - these are magical kids that are looking for mischief and well - as with the map - and coupled with it - allows for a great deal of mischief ....

IMHO - the cloak was removed at the same time the Potters vault key was removed - ergo post Mortem of the Potters ....
Someone went to the house and salvaged a few items that Harry could remember his folks by ...
That is just my thoughts :)
 

Nagini

Time Turners
Great thread Tink :)

Kingsley said:
This is something I have always been split in two on

First scenario--if James purposely gave it to Dumbledore he could have known that something was going to happen eventually and left it as sort of a will-
-but that would lead me to wonder where Dumbledore was to make sure nothing did happen to James and Lily--it is his order after all--ensure some protection

Second scenario--James didnt leave it in Dumbledore's possesion--there is nothing that says Hagrid didnt find the cloak with Harry and give it back to Dumbledore, such a rare item seems like it could have been in Dumbledore's possesion first but he lent it to his best agent :cool:

Yes I wondered the first point you made there too! Why would James leave it in Dumbledore's possession - unless he did not trust Wormtail fully? Perhaps he even let slip to Dumbledore his thoughts on the new secret keeper?

As for the cloak itself, I think its a bit like the Philosopher's Stone, only there are more cloaks than stones of course. Moody had two at his disposal - one he kept as his best one. Perhaps they are not as good as they get older or something?
 

Boing

Pops in randomly
Okay, a conversation in the Shoutbox earlier has me thinking - when exactly do we find out the cloak is from Dumbledore? Is it at the Mirror of Erised or later on in the book. Please forgive me again, my neighbor still has my copy of PS/SS.

And, do we actually find out it was Dumbledore or is it one of those things Harry (and the rest of us) just assume? Who else might have sent the cloak? Lupin? It doesn't have to be somebody at Hogwarts as we know the presents just sort of appear in the night from all over the place . . .
 

catchthesnitch

Curious Yellow
I think we learn toward the end in PS/SS That it was Dumbledore;

Harry: "And the invisibility cloak -- do you know who sent it to me?"

Dumbledore: "Ah -- your father happened to leave it in my possession, and I thought you might like it." Dumbledore's eyes twinkled. "Useful things...your father used it mainly for sneaking off to the kitches to steal food when he was here."

-- PS/SS Chapter 17 The Man With Two Faces
 

Kingsley

Time Turners
Your father happened to leave it in my possession--why?
Why would a spy want to get rid of a device to aid them in their stealth--DD never said James gave it to him though---
I am now under the impression that James never planned on Dumbledore keeping the cloak :mad:
 

Nagini

Time Turners
Perhaps James left it in Dumbledore's possession because Dumbledore confiscated it before James left Hogwarts? If it is as rare as we are led to believe, then it would surely be put somewhere for safe keeping and not in Filtchs' filing cabinet. But then why would he give it to Harry? Unless he was encouraging Harry to use it - note he also told Harry what James had mainly used it for.
 

Alz

Administrator
Staff member
Yah, I think in the context of Kingers question Gini has it on the 'nose' so to speak.
In this scenario - it is plausible that it was confiscated in the school during the time James was there - and for some reason Dumbledore handed it over - that in itself begs a few questions!
If you were 'looking' out for Harry - you wouldnt want him sneaking off anyway unseen!
I suppose that represents the most logical way to explain D's possesion and wanting harry to have it ...
 

secret seeker

The Half Blood Prince
I think its likely that although it was James's cloak, he let the order use it, seeing as how its an important tool. I think J.k.r. said this to put us out of our stride and drop a red herring at the same time, its not that important.
I believe this to be more curious:
Seeing as Harry looks so much like his father, why does he have his mothers eyes, and not his fathers?......
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
America Online chat transcript said:
Where did James get his Invisibility Cloak?

That was inherited from his own father -- a family heirloom!

We know that there was someone else at Godrics Hollow when the Potters were killed. It is possible that they were using the cloak. We also know that Mrs. Figg performed this duty for Dumbledore in relation to Harry. Perhaps she was keeping an eye on the Potters aswell and being a squib could not assist them. We know that she was in the order the first time, although not in Moody's photo, we also know that we are to learn something significant about an order member in book 7.
 

secret seeker

The Half Blood Prince
Very possible that Mrs figg was there, but for what purpose???
I can see Petunia being the one with suppresed magical powers, is she older or younger than Lily?...
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
I guess that she would be keeping a watch and alerting Dumbledore if there were trouble. Someone reported to Dumbledore that the Potters had been attacked. It just seemed odd to me that she was one of the first people that Dumbledore contacted after Voldemort's rebirth.
Dumbledore said:
"Now I have work for each of you. Fudge's attitude, though not unexpected, changes everything. Sirius, I need you to set off at once. You are to alert Remus Lupin, Arabella Figg, Mundungus Fletcher - the old crowd. Lie low at Lupin's for a while; I will contact you there."
Either she is more important than we think or JKR had Dumbledore mention her because she was a character we had already been introduced to.

I don't think that there is any record,either in canon or interview, of who is elder Lily or Petunia. I think that JKR has said that Petunia Has never and will never perform magic.
 
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Alz

Administrator
Staff member
Also what is interesting is JKR's post in Rumours saying it wasnt Snape hiding under the invisibility cloak ... now this could be seen two ways but if she wanted to be definitive should could have said 'no - no-one was hiding under the invisibility cloak' ... now of course that would be obtuse to say well that is iron clad someone was - could even be a little red herring to people just to that conclusion ... but still worthy of thoughts I believe!
 

Padma Patil

Dumbledore's Girl
Well, I remember that invisibility cloaks are made from the fur of this one creature that turns it's self invisible when frightented. The cloak is woven from the fur of the creature. I don't know if that is relevent to anything said, but I thought I'd toss it out there.

As to James leaving it in Dumbledore's care, well if the theory of Dumbledore taking it away while James was still at school is true, why wouldn't Dumbledore give it back when either summer holidays started or at the end of James' school career.

I like the idea that it was picked up from amoungst the rubble of the Potter's house. I'm guessing that somebody went and got it along with Harry and possibly the Potter's Gringotts vault key.

As to who was hiding under the invisibility cloak. Snape would have been my first choice, but thats been shot down. My second choice would have to be either Wormtail or maybe somebody we will be introduced to in book 7. I have a feeling its someone we already know though.
 

tobias

Time Turners
I always assumed that James left the cloak with Dumbledore because it would be used more by the Order than by him.

The kids have difficulty fitting more than one under the cloak- I would submit that since James and Lily and Harry could not all use the cloak, James would not want to use it for just himself. And I never saw Lily as the sort that would leave under a cloak abandoning James...

But the Order would have many uses for an individual to use an invisibility cloak so their need would be greater.
 
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