While watching Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince this morning, my son asked a lot of plot questions, and one of his inquiries about Tom Riddle stumped me. So, here I am, asking all you fine people for help!
Who knew first that Tom Riddle was the Heir of Slytherin: Tom Riddle or Dumbledore?
I would love to see a definitive canon answer to this question, if at all possible.
There were obviously different clues dropped over the years that pointed toward Tom Riddle being the Heir of Slytherin. A few examples:
- Tom Riddle disclosed he could speak with snakes to Dumbledore when Tom was eleven and did not yet know the implications of being a Parselmouth.
- Merope Gaunt's Slytherin lineage.
- The diary Horcrux and the Chamber of Secrets.
- The basilisk and Myrtle's death.
Is it established in canon -- in reference to the Heir of Slytherin, Dumbledore, and Tom Riddle -- who knew what, and when? Who knew first that Tom Riddle was the Heir of Slytherin?
As I already mentioned, I'm looking for an answer grounded in canon -- the books, interviews and/or quotes by J.K. Rowling, or Pottermore. Speculative answers within the spirit of canon are totally fine by me. I did search the site to ensure this question has not been asked already and I didn't find anything -- if this is a duplicate, vote accordingly :)