I believe in canon it is said that Hogwarts is sentient because of the large concentration of magic that has been there for hundreds of years. But is that because magic itself is sentient or just because the castle itself has "soaked up" enough magic to become sentient? Surely if an artefact (or building) can become sentient through exposure to magic, that implies some level of sentience in magic itself?
There are several artefacts that are commonly discussed as potentially being somewhat sentient, such as the Whomping Willow, the Weasley's clock, wands, or even the feral Ford Anglia living in the Forbidden Forest.
- The Whomping Willow could be explained as more instinctual rather than sentient, just because it’s motion activated doesn’t necessarily imply sentience.
- The clock could be probably be programmed through various enchantments and monitoring charms so I don’t think that requires sentience either.
- And on the topic of wands, I believe Rowling even mentioned that wands are semi-sentient but the whole "the wand chooses the wizard" doesn't necessarily imply sentience to me, it could simply be about different wands being more or less in tune with a person's magic.
- The car that becomes feral and lives in the forest is a bit harder to explain away. Especially seeing as it "chooses" to help Harry and Ron escape from the Acromantulas. But was it sentient before they flew it to and crashed it at Hogwarts or did something about the crash at Hogwarts cause the sentience?
So my main question is this:
I'm not sure whether canon ever clarified if the story of how the three brothers cheated death was real and there is a personification of death or whether it was just a children's story but it makes me wonder whether there's any evidence in canon for magic itself being sentient, rather than just objects, and whether someone could potentially interact with magic like the three brothers did with death?
And if magic isn't sentient, then how can magical objects become sentient?