In many situations, we see Professor Snape behave in an unfair manner.

Snape unfairly and arbitrarily takes house points away from Harry/Gryffindors.

Was Dumbledore aware of this and, if so, did he just not care, or did he support this to somehow help Snape's double agent role?

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    Why is "Professor" in quotes? – Izkata Apr 9 '14 at 3:45
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    No. Dumbledore was far too busy inflating Gryffindor's points himself to have time to track Snape's methods of taking points. ;) – Slytherincess Apr 9 '14 at 5:10
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    @Slytherincess Hey, standing up to your friends is hard! Any points Dumbledore awarded to Gryffindor students were obviously totally legit. – Anthony Grist Apr 9 '14 at 12:24
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    @Zibbobz Oh, I was joking if that wasn't obvious. I expect if Gryffindor had been 95 points behind at that particular moment Dumbledore might have considered it worth 100 points. – Anthony Grist Apr 9 '14 at 14:13
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    @AnthonyGrist - Heh, I joked in chat last week that I'm still bitter that Dumbledore stole the house cup from Slytherin and gave it to Gryffindor (STILL BITTER!!!!) in Philosopher's Stone! Jokes aside, Neville standing up to Harry, Ron, and Hermione on behalf of Gryffindor was far worthier of notice and a hefty amount of points than a well-played game of chess, cool logic in the face of fire, or pure nerve and outstanding courage. Harry, Ron, and Hermione exhibited those traits all the time, openly, but Neville really stepped outside his comfort zone. :) – Slytherincess Apr 9 '14 at 15:07

Sneaking out of his room at odd hours of the night?

Entering numerous forbidden areas of the school without consulting ANY of the professors?

Constantly getting himself into trouble in so many ways that if he were anyone other than Harry Potter he would be dead?

AND the fact that Snape is the Headmaster of his rival house?

Maybe a little aggressive in his penalization, but hardly entirely unfair or worth admonishing him over.

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    Snape taking away hundreds of points at a time is more fanon than canon, I suspect. – FuzzyBoots Apr 9 '14 at 12:37
  • @SeanDuggan I seem to recall Harry, Ron, and Hermione all being caught outside of their dorm after hours each receiving 100 point penalties, but I cannot for the life of me remember what they were doing. – Zibbobz Apr 9 '14 at 13:18
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    If it's the one I remember, it was McGonnagal who leveled those penalties. – FuzzyBoots Apr 9 '14 at 14:32
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    +1 to this. His actions are easily meritorious of being expelled many times over. – Valorum Mar 5 '15 at 22:12

According to JKR's inteview answer, it's implied that Dumbledore was aware, because he let it continue on purpose (pedagogically, not just maintain-Snape's-cover reason):

Q: Why does Professor Dumbledore allow Professor Snape to be so nasty to the students (especially to Harry, Hermione, and Neville)?
JKR: "Dumbledore believes there are all sorts of lessons in life ... horrible teachers like Snape are one of them!" (Yahooligans! chat, 2000)

  • Word of God - Check! Link to particular question - "implied"! Better than speculations and opinions - Oh yeah! => +1 as no more definite answer seems to be available – Philip Klöcking Jan 18 '16 at 17:02

I think Dumbledore is aware, but I think it fits with his teaching philosophy.

Why does Dumbledore allow somebody like Peeves who harasses and hurts students to live in Hogwarts ? Probably because so students can learn how to deal with mean people in the world. Similarily perhaps Dumbledore allows Snape to be biased because there are biased people in the real world.

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    It may have even been a deliberate tactic to spur Harry on, given what we learn toward the end of the series about Snape, Dumbledore, and Lily. – Dave Apr 9 '14 at 21:57

Yes, he should be aware of that, because there is a house scoreboard monitoring the marks given and taken. He is the headmaster after all; he should see the scores.

  • -1 that's just a record of points flow. It's not like there is a database of all the causes of addition and subtraction of points, at least not in canon. – Alfredo Hernández Mar 8 '15 at 0:29

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