What are House elves? ...

secret seeker

The Half Blood Prince
:confused: O.K. Bear with me please, just checked Newt Scamanders " Fantastic beasts and where to find them ", and there is not one mention of house elves at all!.
For those of you who haven't read, it covers every magical being/beast except wizards, witches, squibs, and muggles.
For obvious reasons House elves wouldn't be classed as beasts, but they are not mentioned in the " what is a beast? " chapter, used to show how magical beings and beasts classed themselves and others.
In 1811, the defining " definition " of a beast/being was finally established by the Minister of the time, Grogan Stump.
He decreeded that;

* " A being " was " any creature that has sufficient intelligence to understand the laws of the magical community, and to bear part of the responsibility in shaping those laws ".


House elves certainly qualify, but given their attitude towards servitude, probably weren't all that bothered. So if House elves aren't classed as being or beast, what are they?.

ALSO, because house elves exist, then they must have forebearers, was there also a time when house elves were just plain " Elves "???? .
 
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Sirius Potter Fan

Night Patroll
Some interesting questions, also have to include Goblins, Centaur's, and maybe even giants, and what about the dementors? Mermaids? There are several other magical "entities" that the Ministry has left out feeling themselves to be far superior, the realy even feel superior to us muggles. I think that this is where LV is going to seek his advantage in DH, by offering to treat them all as equals (we know he has already recruited giants) I think the trick is though that Harry has ties . . . friendly ties with all of the creatures other than perhaps the goblins and will perhaps do some "recruiting" of his own.
 

Glumbumble

Time Turners
From the books House Elves come under the category of Magical Brethren as shown by the Fountain of magical Brethren in the Atrium of the MoM.

OotP said:
Halfway down the hall was a fountain. A group of golden statues, larger than life-size, stood in the middle of a circular pool. Tallest of them all was a noble-looking wizard with his wand pointing straight up in the air. Grouped around him were a beautiful witch, a centaur, a goblin and a house-elf. The last three were all looking adoringly up at the witch and wizard.

The fountain shows a hierarchy with the Wizard and Witch at the top.

Although the brethren appear to be the a special category of being Umbridge says that Centaurs are covered by the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures and describes them as half-breeds.

OotP said:
That's right!' said Umbridge, in an even higher voice, 'so be very careful! By the laws laid down by the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, any attack by half-breeds such as yourselves on a human -'
'What did you call us?' shouted a wild-looking black centaur, whom Harry recognised as Bane. There was a great deal of angry muttering and tightening of bowstrings around them.
'Don't call them that!' Hermione said furiously, but Umbndge did not appear to have heard her. Still pointing her shaking wand at Magorian, she continued, 'Law Fifteen "B" states clearly that "any attack by a magical creature who is deemed to have near-human intelligence, and therefore considered responsible for its actions —"'

I think that there is some significant symbolism around the statue that may give clues about the content of DH.

OotP said:
He looked up into the handsome wizard's face, but close-to Harry thought he looked rather weak and foolish. The witch was wearing a vapid smile like a beauty contestant, and from what Harry knew of goblins and centaurs, they were most unlikely to be caught staring so soppily at humans of any description. Only the house-elf's attitude of creeping servility looked convincing. With a grin at the thought of what Hermione would say if she could see the statue of the elf, Harry turned his moneybag upside-down and emptied not just ten Galleons, but the whole contents into the pool.

OotP said:
the fountain we destroyed tonight told a lie. We wizards have mistreated and abused our fellows for too long, and we are now reaping our reward.

The destruction of the fountain, I think, represents the ending of social order in the wizarding world.

At the end of GoF and throughout OotP Dumbledore trys to develop relationships with the Giants and the Goblins. In DH a new order with a new system of relationships between the brethren will develop and will play a significant part in the destruction of Voldemort.
 

secret seeker

The Half Blood Prince
The Centaurs do have an appointed office at the Ministry, not that they ever use it, and apparently if a Ministry employee gets moved to that office, then it's for sure, they are shortly to be fired.
Centaurs do not " ally " themselves too much with the Ministry, because they dont like the creatures they ( the M.O.M. ) associate with ( e.g. Dementors, Vampires, Hags... ).
Merpeople too also pulled away from ministry association, for this reason.
The fountain does show a Heirachy of creatures adorning Wizard kind, however, this isnt a " catergory " House-elves have been placed into, I think it just shows the real arrogance and superiority issuses Fudge, in particular, and some wizards/witches have.

Nowhere I have looked does any real classification exist, the early attempt by the Wizard Council ( which precedeed the M.O.M. ) to classify " Beings " said that " any creature with two legs, should have a say in Wizard laws, and how they are formed ".
Trolls, Hags, Fairies, Pixies and anything else with two legs were invited to attend, with disastrous results. No mention is given that House elves have ever been invited.
But still, there has never been any input ( I could find ) that House elves have any say, or classification, with regards to a social order.

I am coming to the conclusion that House elves have always been oppressed, as far back as the 14th Century. If they were important enough, to be classed as un-official " Brethren " by the M.o.M., why haven't they ever had any real classification labelled?.

Hermione would be proud, maybe I should join S.P.E.W., as a Legal advisor ... :D
 
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