I have recently come across a picture that is a theory of Malfoy attempting to warn the trio of the Basilisk in the second film. It has a few exceptionally good points that seem genuine, and I couldn't helping thinking it to be possible.

Malfoy could just being his old self, and granted wished Hermione dead, however, how would she have gotten the page on basilisks from?

enter image description here

It looks typed as if from a Library book (but as explained from the theory, Hermione has an ever ending love for books), but was it? I understand that certain circumstances permit different actions of a human, but this was a hunch from Hermione, no?

The following picture contains mild, vulgar language.

Malfoy Helping Trio

I am looking for the authenticity of this theory, via J.K Rowling herself, or hard, canonical evidence.

Could this theory be linked with the page that Hermione had?

Not my photo - attribution.

  • 2
    its very clear in the book, she goes to the library, and on her way from the library gets petrified. we are led to believe she actually rips a page out of a libarary book
    – Himarm
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:33
  • @Himarm She could have been merely perusing.
    – Jake
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:34
  • No she couldn't, @Himarm is absolutely right. For the whole book the nature of the monster is a mystery to everyone. Then Harry hears the voice just before Quidditch. "'Harry - I think I've just understood something! I've got to go to the library!' And she sprinted away up the stairs." And then Harry and Ron go down to the Quidditch match and then McGonagall comes along, calls the match off and leads Harry and Ron off to petrified Hermione in the hospital wing. She remains exactly as she is - petrified - until Harry and Ron later go and visit her and find the paper scrunched up in her hand
    – Au101
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:38
  • @Au101 I get it, the theory may be far fetched. However, a lot can happen within five to ten minutes, which seems appropriate.
    – Jake
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:42
  • Well, you're basing this on rejecting Hermoine's willingness to tear a page out of a book, even in a search to protect the school from a basilisk. But you're replacing that with the idea that Malfoy secretly wants to protect them. I think we should let Occam's razor do the talking here.
    – Misha R
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 3:16

1 Answer 1


Although only implied by the film, in the book it's explicitly said to have been ripped from a library book:

Harry wasn't looking at Hermione's face. He was more interested in her right hand. It lay clenched on top of her blankets, and bending closer, he saw that a piece of paper was scrunched inside her fist.


It was a page torn from a very old library book. Harry smoothed it out eagerly and Ron leaned close to read it, too.

Chamber of Secrets Chapter 16: "The Chamber of Secrets"

It's not quite beyond possibility that the page isn't from a library book, but there's no doubt it was torn out of a book by Hermione. That the book came from the library is simply the most likely (by a wide margin) of a short list of possible sources.

Although Hermione has a great deal of reverence for books, she has been shown to break school rules and go against her own best judgement during their Hogwarts adventures. Presumably she felt that the immediate threat to every Muggleborn student - especially once she realized the threat was a Basilisk - was more important than one page in one book.

There is no reason to believe this is not true of the movie as well, or that Malfoy had anything to do with providing the necessary information

  • Understood, however, couldn't something similar to dramatic irony come into play? Perhaps the narrator doesn't know an important piece of the puzzle, and used the phrase "library book", as a filler?
    – Jake
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:52
  • @Jake My friend, with the absolute best will in the world, does that book Malfoy's holding in that picture of yours look very old to you? Let it go, CoS is a very beautifully crafted, coherent, little bundle of joy. It doesn't need this fan theory dolloped on top of it
    – Au101
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:55
  • @Jake It's not beyond the realm of possibility that the page was torn from something other than a library book, but there is no doubt that it was recently torn out of a book by Hermione Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:57
  • @Au101 Regardless, this site is to answer question based on philosophical ideas. A main point is to debate until an answer is resolved.
    – Jake
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 0:57
  • 2
    @Jake No, this site is to give authoritative answers to specific questions that have authoritative answers. Debate and philosophy—ideally—do not come into play at all. In this case, there can be no completely authoritative answer, short of a reply from Rowling herself. Yes, it's theoretically possible that Malfoy did it. It's also theoretically possible that Sirius broke out of Azkaban, sneaked into Hogwarts as a dog, went to the library, found the book, tore out the page, followed Hermione around, left it for her to find, and then broke back into Azkaban before anyone noticed. But unlikely. Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 1:17

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.