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I've noticed that Dumbledore seems to have some correlation with many of Harry's perils. Probably the most obvious example would be in The Philosopher's Stone. It really started at the very beginning, when Hagrid went to pick up the Stone with Harry. Dumbledore is a smart man, he knows that Hagrid is good at heart, but he has an issue with being secretive. Also, why wouldn't he let Hagrid go at a different time? This just sounds like something that was planned out to be done with Harry. Was it to spark his curiosity and set him (Harry) up?

This website explains my concern better than I can:

Why would Dumbledore send Hagrid to retrieve the Philosopher’s Stone when he knew Hagrid would be with Harry, given that the Philosopher’s Stone is such a secret and powerful item? Was it that Dumbledore wanted to test Harry, to see what he would do with the knowledge that there was a secret item hidden at Hogwarts? Dumbledore could have sent Hagrid to do pick up Harry and retrieve the Stone from the Gringotts vault at separate times. If there were some urgency requiring the Stone to be retrieved from Gringotts at precisely the time Harry needed to be picked up, Dumbledore could have sent someone else to Gringotts. The best reason for sending Hagrid to do both is so that Harry would know that the item was at Hogwarts.

In addition, Hagrid lets very important parts of the plot, such as Fluffy and who he got Norbert (the dragon) from, just slip. If the stone was really so important to be kept away from students, then why would Dumbledore place his trust in Hagrid to keep this a secret? McGonagall says this herself:

“I’m not saying his heart isn’t in the right place… but you can’t pretend he’s not careless.”

So, why him? Does Dumbledore know he's placing Harry in peril? He knows that Hagrid is careless, and he's aware that Hagrid can slip up. It just seems like something he just wouldn't do.

Dumbledore gave Harry the details of the Mirror as well, explaining how the mirror would show your deepest desire at that moment. However, he also says "back again", implying he was aware that Harry had been looking in the mirror before. Then he says that they'll be taking the mirror away. Dumbledore knows that the mirror is the only thing that Harry has that shows his parents. It feels like a setup: like he wants Harry to try and find the Mirror again, or find where the Mirror happens to be.

Maybe this is just Dumbledore trying to give Hagrid a chance, and Dumbledore understands Harry's situation and being honest with him, but then there's the invisibility cloak and told him to ¨use it well¨. Dumbledore even says that James used to sneak off, highly implying for Harry to use it to sneak off. Sneak off and find the stone, perhaps.

Now, for my question: Is Dumbledore intentionally putting Harry in danger by letting him search for the stone? If so, why would he?

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    That's Dumbledore. That's how he operates. He doesn't actually care for Harry Oct 25, 2020 at 19:48
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    I seems to me that every student in Hogwarts is in danger at any moment.
    – Taladris
    Oct 26, 2020 at 3:49

1 Answer 1

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Harry and friends consider something to this effect at the end of the book:

"D'you think he meant you to do it?" said Ron. "Sending you your father's Cloak and everything?"

"Well," Hermione exploded, if he did – I mean to say – that's terrible – you could have been killed."

"No, it isn't," said Harry thoughtfully. "He's a funny man, Dumbledore. I think he sort of wanted to give me a chance. I think he knows more or less everything that goes on here, you know. I reckon he had a pretty good idea we were going to try, and instead of stopping us, he just taught us enough to help. I don't think it was an accident he let me find out how the mirror worked. It's almost like he thought I had the right to face Voldemort if I could...."

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  • So the answer is "Yes, Dumbledore intentionally put Harry (and the stone) in danger"? Can you then also answer the second part, "Why would he"? The remark about having the right to face Voldemort doesn't make sense. If Quirrel/Voldemort had acted just slightly different, they would have the stone and Harry would be dead. Oct 26, 2020 at 16:05
  • @QuestionAuthority I think the quote pretty much answers that as well. Harry finds some very good reasons for Dumbledore to have put him in danger, if you ask me. As of your objection, if Quirrel or Voldemort had acted just slightly different, it wouldn't have been them, and Dumbledore knew that.
    – Egor Hans
    Feb 16, 2021 at 13:58
  • @EgorHans I think Harry in his mind bends the facts to justify that Dumbledore put him and the school in danger. Dumbledore knows that Voldemort would never kill an innocent child? Voldemort knew that Harry had the stone in his pocket. It would fit Voldemort's character better to let Quirrell first kill Harry and then search the corpse for the stone. Or at least stun him. Feb 16, 2021 at 16:04
  • @QuestionAuthority Well, you do remember that Quirrel actually tried to kill Harry, right? That's just adding the love-based protection charm to the list of things Dumbledore was confident to know enough about.
    – Egor Hans
    Feb 16, 2021 at 16:09
  • @EgorHans "Quirrell snapped his fingers. Ropes sprang out of thin air and wrapped themselves tightly around Harry." But later Quirrell was ordered to stop Harry, and to kill Harry, but instead of using magic, he tried to do it with bare hands, for no apparent reason. Except that Harry would be dead if Quirrell had used magic again, and we can't have the main character die before the end of the series. Feb 16, 2021 at 16:53

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