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My question comes from what I learned in the movies, considering I have not yet been able to read the books. I would just like to know why Severus Snape called himself the Half-Blood Prince? Did many people call him that or did he just think that it was a cool nickname? This question might be answered in the books so feel free to quote from it.

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His mother's name was Eileen Prince, and his father was a Muggle (Tobias Snape). Thus, he gave himself the name "The Half-Blood Prince":

'I was going through the rest of the old Prophets and there was a tiny announcement about Eileen Prince marrying a man called Tobias Snape, and then later an announcement saying she'd given birth to a-'

'-murderer,' spat Harry.

'Well...yes,' said Hermione, 'So...I was sort of right. Snape must have been proud of being "half a Prince", you see? Tobias Snape was a Muggle from what it said in the Prophet.'

'Yeah, that fits,' said Harry. 'He'd play up the pure-blood side so he could get in with Lucius Malfoy and the rest of them.'

Half-Blood Prince Chapter 30: "The White Tomb"

It's never specified whether anyone else knew him by this name, but considering his Slytherin origin and the fact the Voldemort was on the rise, it's unlikely he was telling other student's about his half-blood status.

Well, maybe one other student...

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    "Well, maybe one other student..." :O SPOILERS P.S. A link backing up the claim would be good – Edward G-Jones Mar 26 '15 at 17:17
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    A quote from the books is a better source than the Wikia; it is not a very good Wikia (cc @Noodlemanny) – Jason Baker Mar 26 '15 at 17:29
  • I'd tend to agree, but am unable to access the books at the moment. If you can get the quotes, I'll happily accept the edits! – DavidS Mar 26 '15 at 17:32
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    @DavidS Found it – Jason Baker Mar 26 '15 at 17:41
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    On the topic of whether anyone knew who the HBP was – Möoz Mar 26 '15 at 21:45
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Snape was a unpopular kid when he attended Hogwarts, and was always bullied by Harry's father. His mother also attended Hogwarts, and was a pure-blood with the last name "Prince". Snape's father was a muggle, so when Snape was born, he was a half blood. The kids who bullied him called him "The Half-Blood Prince", and that is what he was known as.

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    Although you're not wrong, this appears to be a worse version of the existing (heavily upvoted) answer. – Valorum Oct 11 '16 at 21:34
  • Welcome to SF&F.SE (or science fiction & fantasy stack exchange). There's nothing intrinsically wrong with what you've written here, except its appropriateness to this site. This is a good answer, or it would be, if it included a few references and didn't say more or less what an existing answer says (see @Valorum's comment). In some places, that's okay, but Stackexchange is different as I'm sure you'll learn. We're not a forum, you can't just toss your 2¢ in, you wanna bring something new to an old question. If you don't, unfortunately, your efforts will be wasted, which sucks for everyone – Au101 Oct 11 '16 at 21:45
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    I do not believe there is anything in canon that asserts the nickname was made up by "the kids who bullied him". If anything, evidence from the books leans toward the belief that Snape made the name up himself. – Paul L Oct 12 '16 at 15:08
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A mud blood (a really mean name) is one who is born from a non wizard family. A half blood is one who is born to one wizard and one muggle parent. A muggle is one who is not a wizard. Snape was a half blood, therefore the half blood part, and the prince part was from his witch mother, Eileen Prince, therefore the prince part, and his name, Snape, is from his not wizard father, Tobias Snape.

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    Although correct, you're not actually adding anything from to the existing answers. – Möoz Jan 12 '17 at 2:31
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Because his mom was a wizard and his dad(Tobias Snape) was muggle, thus the name half-blood. Prince was the last name of his mother(Eileen Prince).

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    Hi, and thanks for your first post! This is correct, but we usually like posts to have a bit more detail than this. Could you provide some quotes from the books, perhaps, or a little more explanation? – Adamant Oct 31 '16 at 18:52

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