Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Friendship Quotes Page 4
How we cite our quotes:
[Harry:] "He accused me of being 'Dumbledore's man through and through.'"
[Dumbledore:] "How very rude of him."
[Harry:] "I told him I was."
Dumbledore opened his mouth to speak and then closed it again. Behind Harry, Fawkes the phoenix let out a low, soft, musical cry. To Harry's intense embarrassment, he suddenly realized that Dumbledore's bright blue eyes looked rather watery, and stared hastily at his own knees. When Dumbledore spoke, however, his voice was quite steady. (17.83-86)
Harry expresses his ultimate loyalty and devotion to Dumbledore in this moment. We are moved by just how moved Dumbledore is. He is the greatest wizard around, and yet he's not without an understanding of how rare and valuable true friendship and loyalty are. We imagine him to be quite an impressive sight in all of his bearded glory and star-flecked robes. But to see him cry makes us wonder whether Dumbledore has many friends. Does his job make it impossible for him to have friendships with others?
"Ah, Harry, how often this happens, even between the best of friends! Each of us believes that what he has to say is much more important than anything the other might have to contribute." (17.104)
As much as we want to believe that Harry and Dumbledore have a friendship that is unshakeable and unflappable, it gets severely rattled in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and all because of Snape. At first, we do think that Harry is being a bit pushy with Dumbledore, and we assume that Dumbledore must know something that Harry doesn't know about Snape and Draco. He is the greatest wizard in the world, after all. In retrospect, it is strange and eerie to think that Dumbledore would not listen to Harry's warnings and suspicions, that he even asserted his authority over Harry in order to squelch them. Had he listened to Harry, he might not have died.