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Book 1 - The Philosopher's Stone

Severus Snape's Analysis 
through each Snape moment or reference in the book

Legend: 

Updates (since Book 5)
  Read at the same line-level in the other column
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gold - physical description
red - personality, personal taste
white - character analysis
mauve/purple - facts
grey cells/light yellow - my personal favorites! 


Spoilers
 on all five books!!!

Warning: In absolutely no case must this text be used for other things than evaluation, fan or inspiration purposes.  I do this only to allow other fans to appreciate the delightful work of JK Rowling and make a full character analysis of one of her creations.  
No money is being made, keep it that way! 
Original text Analysis

Professor Quirrell, in his absurd turban, was talking to a teacher with greasy black hair, a hooked nose, and sallow skin.

It happened very suddenly. The hook-nosed teacher looked past Quirrell's turban straight into Harry's eyes -- and a sharp, hot pain shot across the scar on Harry's forehead.

"Ouch!" Harry clapped a hand to his head.

"What is it?" asked Percy.

"N-nothing."

The pain had gone as quickly as it had come. Harder to shake off was the feeling Harry had gotten from the teacher's look -- a feeling that he didn't like Harry at all.

"Who's that teacher talking to Professor Quirrell?" he asked Percy.

 

 

 

 

 

"Oh, you know Quirrell already, do you? No wonder he's looking so nervous, that's Professor Snape. He teaches Potions, but he doesn't want to -- everyone knows he's after Quirrell's job. Knows an awful lot about the Dark Arts, Snape."

Harry watched Snape for a while, but Snape didn't look at him again.

 

Physical description: 
  • Greasy black hair
  • hooked nose
  • sallow skin
Coincidence? Rather a plot device from Rowling! Maybe Snape looked at Harry because Quirell had just been talking about him in order to concentrate on his scar.  Maybe Quirell even intented Snape to look at Harry at the very moment they looked at each other to cause a diversion or simply waited until Snape looked his way to create confusion in Harry's mind. And I'm not excluding the possibility that Snape knew about this (see below). If you have seen the first movie, you will notice that Quirrell was indeed talking to Snape, though we don't know about what, but he did ask for his opinion. Therefore, it must have been about Potter since Snape automatically looked his way. What's strange is that at that precise moment, Quirrell was neither facing Snape or Harry. He was turned back so that Voldemort could inflict pain to Harry. I think this seemingly plot was not lost on Snape because right after looking at Potter and surely seeing him grab his scar, Snape looked back at Quirrell with a suspecting look on his face. In the movie that is! I wish Rowling had been this explicit in the book!  
This passage somehow proves how expressive Snape's eyes are!  You don't often get the feeling someone hates you at such a distance!!  Since Quirrell was talking to him, apparently about Potter, I reckon he told him "nice stuff" about Harry. Things Snape didn't want to hear at least so that when he looked at Harry, he wouldn't look happy and be able to show his hate.
Update: Before, this fact was never acknowledged, but thanks to book 5, we know that at first, Snape applied for the DADA job, and often so for the 14 years he's been teaching at Hogwarts. So now, we all know that indeed, Snape has always wanted that position AND he is talented in the Dark Arts!  My old theory still holds in part though. I thought Snape wanted the job because he thinks the other teachers are not competent enough to instruct students about them. I think it still does, but this would be a secondary motivation instead of a primary goal. Because if Snape applied for the job the first time round, it's not only to replace incompetent teachers.  But of course, maybe in Snape's mind, DADA teachers have never been competent enough too! One of my proofs for this theory is the following: The only one he has not criticized for his teaching methods was Moody Mad-Eye, who was indeed competent since he has been dealing with Dark Wizards all of his life.  However, if you take Quirrell (scared by his own shadow), Gilderoy (interested in shampoo) and Lupin (a kind Gryffindor who obviously never used Dark Magic), I think Snape has the right of being pissed off to see the most important course, for the students' own protection, taught by seemingly non-dark-magic-practicing teachers.  Maybe he even felt so back in his own student's days. Also, Snape is aware of what Dark Wizards can do, so as a teacher, he would naturally fill these educative lacks in case his students had to stand against real Dar Wizards.  And if Snape thinks students are not receiving enough protection, he seems willing to take it upon his shoulders to do it!
Therefore, thanks to book five, we not only know that Snape has always been after the DADA job, but it also means that he's indeed talented enough for it, ever since he was in school. But how about Potions then? I think his opening speech on Potions (that almost every Snape fan knows by heart now) is proof enough that he likes it even though he would prefer the DADA position. It's a shame Rowling said nothing about Snape's school skills in Potions back in his school days!!  I think they were great too. From what I learned in Book5, I believe Snape was indeed a "literary type" of guy, therefore found of studying like Hermione, a hard-worker and a perfectionist. (See Book 5 analysis for more details) Still, I think that Snape likes both Potions and DA.  

"Double Potions with the Slytherins," said Ron. "Snape's Head of Slytherin House. They say he always favors them -- we'll be able to see if it's true."

 

 Snape's Head of Slytherin House 
(Frankly, this is no news, but now tell me if you think someone else would fit better?)

At the start-of-term banquet, Harry had gotten the idea that Professor Snape disliked him. By the end of the first Potions lesson, he knew he'd been wrong. Snape didn't dislike Harry -- he hated him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Potions lessons took place down in one of the dungeons. It was colder here than up in the main castle, and would have been quite creepy enough without the pickled animals floating in glass jars all around the walls.

Snape, like Flitwick, started the class by taking the roll call, and like Flitwick, he paused at Harry's name.

 

 

"Ah, Yes," he said softly, "Harry Potter. Our new -- celebrity."

Draco Malfoy and his friends Crabbe and Goyle sniggered behind their hands. Snape finished calling the names and looked up at the class. His eyes were black like Hagrid's, but they had none of Hagrid's warmth.

They were cold and empty and made you think of dark tunnels.

"You are here to learn the subtle science and exact art of potion-making," he began. He spoke in barely more than a whisper, but they caught every word -- like Professor McGonagall, Snape had the gift of keeping a class silent without effort. "As there is little foolish wand-waving here, many of you will hardly believe this is magic. I don't expect you will really understand the beauty of the softly simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins, bewitching the mind, ensnaring the senses.... I can teach you how to bottle fame, brew glory, even stopper death -- if you aren't as big a bunch of dunderheads as I usually have to teach."

More silence followed this little speech. Harry and Ron exchanged looks with raised eyebrows. Hermione Granger was on the edge of her seat and looked desperate to start proving that she wasn't a dunderhead.

"Potter!" said Snape suddenly. "What would I get if I added powdered root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?"

Powdered root of what to an infusion of what? Harry glanced at Ron, who looked as stumped as he was; Hermione's hand had shot into the air.

"I don't know, sit," said Harry.

Snape's lips curled into a sneer.

"Tut, tut -- fame clearly isn't everything."

He ignored Hermione's hand.

"Let's try again. Potter, where would you look if I told you to find me a bezoar?"

Hermione stretched her hand as high into the air as it would go without her leaving her seat, but Harry didn't have the faintest idea what a bezoar was. He tried not to look at Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle, who were shaking with laughter.

"I don't know, sir." 

"Thought you wouldn't open a book before coming, eh, Potter?" Harry forced himself to keep looking straight into those cold eyes. He had looked through his books at the Dursleys', but did Snape expect him to remember everything in One Thousand Magical Herbs and Fungi?

Snape was still ignoring Hermione's quivering hand.

"What is the difference, Potter, between monkshood and wolfsbane?"

At this, Hermione stood up, her hand stretching toward the dungeon ceiling.

"I don't know," said Harry quietly. "I think Hermione does, though, why don't you try her?"

A few people laughed; Harry caught Seamus's eye, and Seamus winked. Snape, however, was not pleased.

"Sit down," he snapped at Hermione. "For your information, Potter, asphodel and wormwood make a sleeping potion so powerful it is known as the Draught of Living Death. A bezoar is a stone taken from the stomach of a goat and it will save you from most poisons. As for monkshood and wolfsbane, they are the same plant, which also goes by the name of aconite. Well? Why aren't you all copying that down?"

There was a sudden rummaging for quills and parchment. Over the noise, Snape said, "And a point will be taken from Gryffindor House for your cheek, Potter."

Things didn't improve for the Gryffindors as the Potions lesson continued. Snape put them all into pairs and set them to mixing up a simple potion to cure boils. He swept around in his long black cloak, watching them weigh dried nettles and crush snake fangs, criticizing almost everyone except Malfoy, whom he seemed to like. He was just telling everyone to look at the perfect way Malfoy had stewed his horned slugs when clouds of acid green smoke and a loud hissing filled the dungeon. Neville had somehow managed to melt Seamus's cauldron into a twisted blob, and their potion was seeping across the stone floor, burning holes in people's shoes. Within seconds, the whole class was standing on their stools while Neville, who had been drenched in the potion when the cauldron collapsed, moaned in pain as angry red boils sprang up all over his arms and legs.

 

 

 

 

"Idiot boy!" snarled Snape, clearing the spilled potion away with one wave of his wand. "I suppose you added the porcupine quills before taking the cauldron off the fire?"

Neville whimpered as boils started to pop up all over his nose.

"Take him up to the hospital wing," Snape spat at Seamus. Then he rounded on Harry and Ron, who had been working next to Neville.

 

 

 

 

"You -- Potter -- why didn't you tell him not to add the quills? Thought he'd make you look good if he got it wrong, did you? That's another point you've lost for Gryffindor."

This was so unfair that Harry opened his mouth to argue, but Ron kicked him behind their cauldron.

"Don't push it," he muttered, "I've heard Snape can turn very nasty."

 

Grudge, hate or... the certainty that Potter is a synonym for disobedience, boosted-ego, foolishness and adoration?  I think the latter is best. Thanks to Book 5, we know that this is exactly what James Potter was like back in his schooldays!!  Hence my theory still holds the road! The problem here is that Harry's popularity is working against him when it comes to Snape. "Oh Harry Potter this" "Ah, Harry Potter that!" When over-adoration of someone's competence comes to Snape's ears, I'm pretty sure he is the kind of man to hate it.  I can't stand fandomship myself when fans loose sight of reality!  (Some Snape fans will hate me now but that's the truth:  Short-sightedness is something Snape hates!!)  Hence, Snape hates Harry's fans and Harry himself.  He gave plenty of proofs of it in the five books. I also think there is a bit of grudge thrown in there! You don't get a chance to hand back a piece of your mind to your ennemy's son everyday!!  This time, Snape  is in control of what he thinks Potter is.  Harry's not really like his father of course, but like I said, all Harry's fans promotes this idea!  Not to mention Harry's recklessness at times!  Hence, Snape acts exactly like he would have liked his teachers to act with James Potter.  Then, maybe, he would not have had to suffer all the humiliating things James pressed on Snape.  If  someone before Lily Evans had helped James deflate his head, maybe he would have left Snape alone. I think that's how Snape is reacting to Harry.
Snape seems to love the cold or he is used to it at least because, as powerful a wizard as he is, he would know how to cast a warming spell!  I read in a fanfiction (Riley's Pawn to Queen) that Snape would not eager to lit fires because he didn't want any uninvited guests, especially evil guests!  I think that quite makes sense!  In other fanfictions, some say that the dungeons are kept cold by Snape so that students can focus on their potions and keep an alert mind. That's also a possibility. Or that potions ingredients need a cool place to be preserved in.  Those are good explanations I think!
And, maybe Snape, though a Slytherin, is warm-blooded! ; )
The following events rather prove that Snape cannot support Harry because he believes he is everything his father was.  From what we know he was : adored, a celebrity, a seeker, always playing pranks, bending the rules, confident, courageous and Gryffindor to top it all! And Book5 really put that all into perspective in Chapter 28 - Snape's Worst Memory
-Black eyes with no warmth in them
-Cold and empty
-Like dark tunnels
-He loves exactness!
-Can keep his class silent, which is almost a prerequisite in Snape's case! 
-He accords little value to "wand" magic because, I believe, it is too simple to pronounce a spell. Especially compared to Potion making.  Knowing a word and a gesture is quite simple if compared to learning ingredients by heart, where they come from, what are their characteristics, how they can affect a potion, how they interact together, when to put on ingredient and when not to, etc.  
But this attitude towards "wand" should not be taken too literally. I think I did before, but now, I'm beginning to understand that what he meant was more along the lines of "I expect you to be careful, exact, to study hard, in a word, to do a lot by yourself and not rely on your wand for this class". Why? Because Snape cannot hate wand-waving magic... he likes the Dark Arts!!  You need a wand to be good in the Dark Arts don't you?!
-I think he really loves Potions, otherwise, he would not even care to share his own vision of Potions to what he believes to be dunderheads!  
-He also seems to put great value in his work because he knows he can do a lot of things with Potions! He sure knows how to appeal to his public as well...before insulting them that is!  Who wouldn't want to brew glory, stopper death, etc?!  
Here is where Snape is going to definitely "categorise" Harry as a boy "too good" to dare study beforehand!  Also,  Snape wants to prove (he must have dream of that day for a long time) that having a gift for magic does NOT automatically infer that you are intelligent or all-powerful or that you should use it to show off!  Reminds you of someone?  James of course!  It seems all about him, doesn't it? Snape's not talking about being a Muggle-raised child or not here, it's about studying and intellect. It seems quite important to Snape, but even more when it comes to Harry because, surely, since Harry's defeat of Voldemort, people have adored him even though they had no clue as to who he was or what he stood for. I mean, Harry's a legend, everyone is "honored" to meet him because of his greatness even though he did nothing! Snape hates that, even more because it calls back to his horrible memories of James who was a show off.
The fact that Snape is completely ignoring Hermione is another proof that Snape wants to prove everybody that Harry Potter is not as great as everybody makes him.  It's true in the sense that Harry has been idolized by many, like his father.  Snape surely despises that fact and tries to prevent history from repeating itself.  I'm sure when he was young, Snape thought teachers were "eating out of James's hand" because he was soooooo fantastic in many domains.  However, for Snape, these features are bad and not to be encouraged.  I think Severus was often disminished or laughted at because of James and his friends (now proven by Book5).  So, here, he doesn't want to teach the students, unless he would ask Hermione.  He only wants to prove what lack of knowledge ends up to, especially in celebrities or adored figures! .
Again, Snape thinks Harry suffers from the "popularity = no need to study" philosophy.  I don't think he is because of the Dursleys, Harry became quite different thanks to that. But had Harry been brought up in the Wizard community, I doubt he would not be a little bit like Malfoy or a bigger-headed boy like his father whom everyone adored, as mentioned in Book5. 

 

Ouch!!  Now, Harry has finished being categorised!!  He is now the insolent little boy who thinks he is so great he doesn't need to put efforts in his school work AND who will then spend most of his free time playing pranks and has no respect for authority! Commanding Snape to ask Hermione was just a tad too much wasn't it! You don't command Snape. What's bad for Harry is that he surely reacted just like his father would have.  
Snape got 5 points off in the movie! Do you think it's because they needed him to look more evil because of time restriction?  Who knows?  This is surely a lifetime dream for Snape: taking points from a Potter!  I'm sure he thought James never did loose enough points back when he was a student! Also notice that this is the first time Snape takes off points from Harry, yet he only took one.
He wears a long black cloak (Black? He would never!)
I am pretty sure, as many of you, that Snape's liking Malfoy is nothing but political interest.  Snape's no fool and knows Draco will call Lucius if he isn't satisfied!  This would of course imply that Snape has kept quite close to "former" Death Eaters or just Malfoy. Lucius is quite powerful afterall.  It's difficult to know, but I'm sure Severus would have a lot of problems if he didn't use his sly talents in favouring his House.  And when half your House comes from Death Eater families, there is a line you should not cross!  
Others say he is just mean, but since Snape loves work well done, I don't tend to see his favoratism towards Slytherin as just a mean to get credit!  Where's the point if you are the judge?! Of course, as most must think, Slytherin is nothing but a cradle for Dark Wizards. Hence, Snape must be quite happy that someone is finally on their side, for the good Slytherins !  Maybe this feeling blinds his judgment! Also note that almost only Malfoy isn't reprimanded here. That means the other Slytherins don't have the upper-hand here!
Here goes our dear Neville!  The poor boy!  Like I was saying, Snape does not support incompetence!  That's the only thing to it!  This is why I cannot fathom the fact that Snape would not punish incompetence in his own house unless he had too much pressure from parents. He has to maintain his image. That's one part of Rowling's plot for Snape. At the same time, if he was able to maintain his "spy" days secret, (though I don't know how his trial could have been kept a secret from Lucius?! That's something I can't wait to read in the next books because it defies my mind) he would want to keep his favoring attitude towards Dark Wizards (Slytherins) in the making.  That way, he can come back as a spy and say he was not corrupted by Dumbledore afterall!  Nasty Snape being Dumbledore's puppet? Not likely! Book5 proved that Snape was indeed able to go back into the Death Eater ranks. Snape was making reports and he knew what Harry's dreams were about.  And Lucius Malfoy was said to praise Snape too. Therefore, Snape, somehow, was able to take his place back in the ranks of the Death Eaters. Whether he was a high-ranked one or not, we do not know yet.  
Again, Snape thinks Potter wants glory all for himself!  I think Snape just forgot that Harry's not been sorted in Slytherin!! A Slytherin like Draco would have wanted Neville to fail. Or again, it may refer to Snape's experience of James Potter.  
Nasty: I think this is a good expression to describe Snape's teaching ways.  If you don't do things right as a student (listen well in class and all), he will turn nasty until you do! In Book5, they called him a "git". I'd say that Rowling will keep his character that way, that's why she said we should not think Snape to be too nice! (See interview at Royal Albert Hall and my analysis of it

Harry told Hagrid about Snape's lesson. Hagrid, like Ron, told Harry not to worry about it, that Snape liked hardly any of the students.

"But he seemed to really hate me."

"Rubbish!" said Hagrid. "Why should he?"

Yet Harry couldn't help thinking that Hagrid didn't quite meet his eyes when he said that.

 

Snape is hard on every student. I was also thinking back on the word "any". Does it mean that even in Slytherin, Snape does not take a lot of interest in his students?  I guess it does somehow, it's not only for Gryffindors or Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw. Children will be children, and Snape seems to hate that! Slytherins know how to hide their pranks, hence, if you are not caught, you are safe! But yet again, I stress the importance of politics!!  Also, when you think about it, we never read about Snape seeming worried for one of his Slytherins. He just puts them out of their misery if they ever happen to be in trouble, but we never heard of Snape being overly anxious about his Slytherins. It's hard to reckon at the moment, but I think Snape acts coldly. So, indeed, he hardly likes any of the students. It's more that he has a different level of disliking for each of them.
Update: Hagrid seems to know about the way James and the others treated Snape in school. Also, before this update, I said that " A lot of speculation has been going around Snape being in love with Lily.  I think that's the best theory along with Snape's hate for the Marauders because they made his life a nightmare!"  But, now, this theory may prove wrong because Snape, in Book5, said he didn't want to be helped by a mudblood. Hence, being with a mudblood may seem repulsive to Snape. However, we could also say that Snape used this word because he was so humiliated already, he really didn't want being helped by a mudblood in front of some Slytherins. That would be bad. That's a defensive mechanism. And if Snape was indeed in love with her, he just wanted to prove that, as a man, he was able to defend himself.  That's what boys of that age always want to prove!  Maybe that is Snape's worst memory of his schooldays exactly because Lily was there and helped him! In a boy's mind, he should be the one to help the damsel in distress, right?  

I shall speak to Professor Dumbledore and see if we can't bend the first-year rule. Heaven knows, we need a better team than last year. Flattened in that last match by Slytherin, I couldn't look Severus Snape in the face for weeks...."

 

There really seems to be a "competition" between Severus and Minerva!  I think it's normal because they both want their House to win, but maybe it's because, in Snape' school time, Gryffindor was always winning?  Maybe, and then, Snape would want to prove that "sly" people could also win like the almighty Gryffindors!  It seems that they both want to prove something, unless, Minerva would not feel ashame to look Severus in the face!  Why would she?  She's quite older!  This competition may lead Minerva to realise her house's flaws too!
In Book5, both Minerva and Severus gave extra time to their teams to prepare for the Quidditch match. Hence, it strengthens the theory. And they also overlook problems associated with their players, though Severus overlooks it more than Minerva. Also, notice how she refers to Snape as "Severus Snape", without using "professor".  Yet, she just did it for Dumbledore. One theory: maybe Dumbledore was once her teacher and Snape his students, and therefore could never truly switch back to calling them differently. However, I believe it is rather because she usually calls him Severus, but, in front of Harry, she uses his full name.  Maybe she likes calling him Severus, to be closer to him. We often see such a closeness between competitors after all.

Peering around it, however, they saw not Percy but Snape. He crossed the corridor and disappeared from view.

"What's he doing?" Harry whispered. "Why isn't he down in the dungeons with the rest of the teachers?"

"Search me."

Quietly as possible, they crept along the next corridor after Snape's fading footsteps.

"He's heading for the third floor," Harry said, but Ron held up his hand.

 

I like this part so much because Snape was the only one who immediately thought there was something wrong with the Philosopher Stone! 
I think Snape knows what to do because he was evil at one point in his life.  Also, you don't have to spend a long time in the Serpent's Den to learn how delusion and diversion are effective weapons!

 A moment later, Professor McGonagall had come bursting into the room, closely followed by Snape, with Quirrell bringing up the rear. Quirrell took one look at the troll, let out a faint whimper, and sat quickly down on a toilet, clutching his heart.

Snape bent over the troll. Professor McGonagall was looking at Ron and Harry. Harry had never seen her look so angry. Her lips were white.

Hopes of winning fifty points for Gryffindor faded quickly from Harry's mind.

"What on earth were you thinking of?" said Professor McGonagall, with cold fury in her voice. Harry looked at Ron, who was still standing with his wand in the air. "You're lucky you weren't killed. Why aren't you in your dormitory?"

Snape gave Harry a swift, piercing look. Harry looked at the floor. He wished Ron would put his wand down.

 

This does prove that Snape got to Quirell and brought him back with him because he didn't trust him. He surely found him exactly where he expected Quirell to be! Snape would not have left Quirell alone at Fluffy's door!  Notice how Quirell looks at the troll and tries to look scared?  This delusion did not impress Snape however!! Snape knew exactly who let the troll in not to mention he must be aware that Quirrell was an expert with trolls!
This is one feature I like about Snape: whatever happens, he feels concerned. People like Lockhart would only be babbling about how they could have done it themselves.  But Snape always seems to fear for the security of others, in his hidden kind of way of course!  He would of course check if the troll was out of his senses for as long as they needed to take control over it!
Snape seems to tell Harry: "See! I told you you were an isolent disobedient boy! Never at the right place at the right time! Instead of just following orders, you had to play heroes, didn't you?!"

Hermione hung her head. Harry was speechless. Hermione was the last person to do anything against the rules, and here she was, pretending she had, to get them out of trouble. It was as if Snape had started handing out sweets.

I love this comparison!  Wouldn't it be cute to see that?  I think Snape would be more the kind to buy the sweets and pay someone to do the job!! He would never want a student to think he could be nice, would he? He always wants to appear uncaring, detached and cold.

... three of them were out in the freezing courtyard during break, and she had conjured them up a bright blue fire that could be carried around in a jam jar. They were standing with their backs to it, getting warm, when Snape crossed the yard. Harry noticed at once that Snape was limping. Harry, Ron, and Hermione moved closer together to block the fire from view; they were sure it wouldn't be allowed. Unfortunately, something about their guilty faces caught Snape's eye. He limped over. He hadn't seen the fire, but he seemed to be looking for a reason to tell them off anyway.

"What's that you've got there, Potter?"

 

 

It was Quidditch Through the Ages. Harry showed him.

"Library books are not to be taken outside the school," said Snape.

"Give it to me. Five points from Gryffindor."

"He's just made that rule up," Harry muttered angrily as Snape limped away. "Wonder what's wrong with his leg?"

"Dunno, but I hope it's really hurting him," said Ron bitterly.

(...)

Harry felt restless. He wanted Quidditch Through the Ages back, to take his mind off his nerves about tomorrow. Why should he be afraid of Snape? Getting up, he told Ron and Hermione he was going to ask Snape if he could have it.

"Better you than me," they said together, but Harry had an idea that Snape wouldn't refuse if there were other teachers listening.

He made his way down to the staffroom and knocked. There was no answer. He knocked again. Nothing.

Perhaps Snape had left the book in there? It was worth a try. He pushed the door ajar and peered inside -- and a horrible scene met his eyes. Snape and Filch were inside, alone. Snape was holding his robes above his knees. One of his legs was bloody and mangled. Filch was handing Snape bandages.

"Blasted thing*," Snape was saying. "How are you supposed to keep your eyes on all three heads at once?"

Harry tried to shut the door quietly, but --

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"POTTER!"

Snape's face was twisted with fury as he dropped his robes quickly to hide his leg. Harry gulped.

"I just wondered if I could have my book back."

"GET OUT! OUT!"

Harry left, before Snape could take any more points from Gryffindor. He sprinted back upstairs.

Snape is suspicious by nature.  No matter what, his logic will always get him to notice when something is wrong, even if it's not exactly the right thing. 
I think he especially knows about concealing.  Gryffindors trying to conceal something from the master of emotionless-face?  Not likely!  After being in the Serpent's Den for so long, Snape must know how to recognize a guilty face in a flash! The problem is, Snape got so suspicious over the years, I reckon, that now everyone feels guilty of the simplest things in his presence, as if they couldn't fathom what would upset him next. Therefore, Snape leaves in his wake frightened people, guilty-looking people, etc. And then of course, Snape may think that everyone is always so distant and guilty in his presence. It's a vicious circle really. If only he could trust people more... but having been a Death Eater is one thing that can drain you of trust for the rest of your life, right!  
Question: Was it the title that got Snape to take it away from Harry?  I think Snape didn't like the "Quidditch" part of the title!  Too much like his father! Of course, it must be ok to bring books outside!  It's a school!  Maybe what Snape meant was : "You should not bring books that are not your own in places you might damage them".  He just doesn't trust Harry. 
Snape must also be quite unamused because of his leg!  Usually, when Snape is not physically or mentally well, his manners suffer a great deal, like here!

 

 

 
 

Is Snape really more malleable in the presence of other teachers?  Hummm.. Makes you wonder really!  I think he would only explain himself to the teachers, but nothing more.  Snape has a logical and methodological mind, so he always considers things or actions as having a purpose.  However, he just doesn't feel like he needs to tell his reasons!  That's what's so confusing about his character!  You never know for sure why he does what he does!  
Snape's relationship with Filch seems cold but built on confidence at the same time.  For once, if Snape took care of his injury by himself, it means that he didn't want Mrs Pomphrey to question him about how he could have got such a "bite" taken out of him, and arise false suspicions.  Therefore, if Filch was not someone Snape trusted, he would never have asked him to help bandage his leg!  After all, Filch takes for the Slytherin team in Quidditch!!  And they both have the same "appreciation" of the importance of not bending rules!! Also, Snape definitely told Filch why he had gone there, unless he would never have talked directly about Fluffy . Why he could not cure himself with magic is a problem in Rowling's plot!  Harry had to see it, so it couldn't be cured easily by magic. But wouldn't Snape be able to perform curing spells? Maybe not, but we don't know because Rowling never gave us much details about medical magic. However, we do know that Snape sends some students to the infirmary when he can not cure them with antidotes. Hence, medical magic must be very different from Potions and the Dark Arts!  OR, another explanation, Snape never likes to go to Mrs Pomphrey!!  That's more reliable because if not, how can you explain that Snape walked in front of the whole school LIMPING! I mean, isn't that the biggest clue that something is amiss!! Why would he not want to seek medical help if he were innocent?!  THATcould arise suspicions! And Snape wouldn't want people to get suspicious now would he!?  Of course, it is possible that Rowling couldn't think about all those details when she wrote her book. However, today, if she'd want to defend her point on this one, she would have to say that it is not  unusual for Snape not to seek medical help. Or that he has a bad knee or  arthritis, and he was able to put the blame on it when people asked him why he was limping".... if they were courageous enough to ask in the first place that is!   I think this is one place where a character in a story unintentionally acquires a new trait of personality. Even though the author didn't mean it that way or didn't think about it at all, the result is that, now, her character, Snape, has a physical problem or he hates to seek medical help. But as I just said, I think this was not meant to be.
I'm sorry I completely forgot to mention: "How come Snape can't get pass Fluffy!?!" The answer is simple to me: there was no instrument in the room so that the simplest clue was not there lying around as we saw in the movie. Before, I must admit that I was confounded by the harp playing in the background when the Trio went into Fluffy's room near the end of the
movie.  I then took it for granted that a harp was just lying there waiting for someone to get the clue. If it had been a flute or something smaller, I would not have thought it had been there all the time. But my muggle-mind concluded that a harp was too big an instrument for Quirrell to bring around!! Therefore, it had to had been there all along. But I forgot about Transfigurations now didn't I!! That was stupid, I know! But now that I got rid of this preconception, I understand why Snape couldn't get pass Fluffy, even though he said he tried to "keep his eyes on all of the heads at once".Afterall, even Quirrell couldn't guess until he asked Hagrid at the bar, so that confirms the fact that no instrument were left to play.  It must also mean that the "Stupefy" spell doesn't work here!
Snape really knows Harry!  He knows how curious he is and how he will do everything to understand what's going on.  For Snape, it means Harry will meddle into other people's affairs, but for Harry, it means that Snape is the villain!  I don't think Snape expected Harry to believe he was the villain in this.  I think he was pissed off 1)that Harry came in without permission; 2)that Harry overheard him talking about Fluffy; 3) that Harry saw him trying to cure his leg in secret! Snape can't support people (or should I say "students") who meddle in other people's stuff (not that it stops him sometimes when he feels it's his responsibility).  Especially since Potter will surely get himself into trouble! And indeed he did!!    

"Can't have," Hagrid said, his voice shaking. "Can't nothing interfere with a broomstick except powerful Dark magic -- no kid could do that to a Nimbus Two Thousand."

At these words, Hermione seized Hagrid's binoculars, but instead of looking up at Harry, she started looking frantically at the crowd.

"What are you doing?" moaned Ron, gray-faced.

"I knew it," Hermione gasped, "Snape -- look."

Ron grabbed the binoculars. Snape was in the middle of the stands opposite them. He had his eyes fixed on Harry and was muttering nonstop under his breath.

"He's doing something -- jinxing the broom," said Hermione.

Here is where we first associate Snape's knowledge of the Dark Arts, its uses and his interest in the DADA position. That's the students' point of view of course!  Now, like I said before, even though Snape likes studying the Dark Arts, he is not  using them in an evil way anymore.  Nobody knows exactly why he knew more about the Dark Arts than half the seventh year when he got to Hogwarts, but one thing's for sure: he does not uses them anymore, supposing he did in his Death Eaters days.  Dumbledore would make sure of that!   In Book5, they said he was really into it, very interested in them. I think this could be described as the Frankenstein effect: Dr. Frankenstein was very interested in Dark medecine because he needed it, he thought he could help people with it, he thought that it was a field that was not enough exploited. I think the Dark Arts are also called like that because they are still obscure subjects in magic. Not only because they are evil though I admit most of it must be. Why do some plants produce poison? Could we use it to our advantage, not for killing? Maybe that's one explanation why Snape likes that field. Or he wants to protect people from it or uncover mysteries about them. Snape's an intellectual, after all.
So, why did Snape know so much before he got to school? Theories: 1)Snape's family was very involved with the Dark Arts. 2)Snape considers the Dark Arts like important knowledge for protection  3) Snape wanted something less boring to study because he knew so much already  4) Snape just wanted the additional knowledge  5)Snape wanted to be powerful, for good or evil
Here is something that could prove theory #2: Snape knows the counter-spell to Quirell's Dark magic!  Therefore, he can protect Harry!

Hermione had fought her way across to the stand where Snape stood, and was now racing along the row behind him; she didn't even stop to say sorry as she knocked Professor Quirrell headfirst into the row in front. Reaching Snape, she crouched down, pulled out her wand, and whispered a few, well- chosen words. Bright blue flames shot from her wand onto the hem of Snape's robes.

It took perhaps thirty seconds for Snape to realize that he was on fire. A sudden yelp told her she had done her job. Scooping the fire off him into a little jar in her pocket, she scrambled back along the row -- Snape would never know what had happened. It was enough. Up in the air, Harry was suddenly able to clamber back on to his broom.

 

Why is Snape saving Harry's butt?  Theories:
1-He is not that desperate to get rid of him!
2-He hates him but never to the point of killing!
3-He is a teacher, hence, he feels responsible for the safety of any students.
4-He owns James Potter a life-debt
He looked pretty concentrated there, no?  He seems the type to forget everything around him and do what he has to in case of life-saving situations! That's also one quality that must make him a good potions brewer! Concentration!

"But Snape's trying to steal it."

"Rubbish," said Hagrid again. "Snape's a Hogwarts teacher, he'd do nothin' of the sort."

"So why did he just try and kill Harry?" cried Hermione.

The afternoon's events certainly seemed to have changed her mind about Snape. I know a jinx when I see one, Hagrid, I've read all about them! You've got to keep eye contact, and Snape wasn't blinking at all, I saw him!"

"I'm tellin' yeh, yer wrong!" said Hagrid hotly. "I don' know why Harry's broom acted like that, but Snape wouldn' try an' kill a student!  

 

This issue comes back very often when talking about Snape: the trust Dumbledore has in him.  Dumbledore trusts Snape so much that he even gave him a position as a Hogwarts teacher!  Which seems to be a proof of good will in itself, for Hagrid and the students at least!  

 

 

 

Again, confirmation that Snape, even though he hates a lot of people, would not attempt murder.  This does come from Hagrid, but at the same time, it comes from a guy who's always been there with Snape.  So, over the years, Hagrid must have come to suspect nothing such as murder from Snape. He was there when Snape was a schoolboy after all.  

No one could wait for the holidays to start. (...) Worst of all were Professor Snape's classes down in the dungeons, where their breath rose in a mist before them and they kept as close as possible to their hot cauldrons.

 

Snape loves the cold! People say that is. There is also another school of thought which relates this "cold atmosphere" to Snape's wish to see his students careful at all times. Stay in a cold room for a while, you'll know how your awareness will be improved!  It's an attention catcher in a sense because I have my doubts as to whether it is impossible to cast a good warming spell all over the classroom.  And what about the Slytherin commonroom? That wouldn't be to inviting. But then again, Rowling has often been writing about such things as the impossibility, even for wizards, to warm themselves properly. I'm thinking about Book5 where Aurors and Harry flew high in the sky, frozing to their death without being able to use warming spells. Or when in Book1 Hermione enchanted a blue fire, the same she used on Snape to warm up because, seemingly, no body-warming spell existed.    
 

Ron dived at Malfoy just as Snape came up the stairs.

"WEASLEY!"

Ron let go of the front of Malfoy's robes.

"He was provoked, Professor Snape," said Hagrid, sticking his huge hairy face out from behind the tree. "Malfoy was insultin' his family."

"Be that as it may, fighting is against Hogwarts rules, Hagrid," said Snape silkily. "Five points from Gryffindor, Weasley, and be grateful it isn't more. Move along, all of you."

Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle pushed roughly past the tree, scattering needles everywhere and smirking.

"I'll get him," said Ron, grinding his teeth at Malfoy's back, "one of these days, I'll get him --"

"I hate them both," said Harry, "Malfoy and Snape."

See how Snape plays with rules like a real Slytherin: he knows Malfoy was wrong in provoking Ron, but at the same time, he cannot say the Malfoy moved first!  Ron did and this is where the "no fighting" Hogwarts rule kicks in!  Therefore, Snape doesn't punish Malfoy, though he tells them off pretty roughly.  I think Snape, as a Slytherin, appreciates cunning fights.  If you get into a fight, so be it, but don't get caught and don't raise to the bait!  

 

 

 


 

Harry Potter hates both Malfoy and Snape!  I wonder if the opposite is true?
 

"You asked me to come directly to you, Professor, if anyone was wandering around at night, and somebody's been in the library Restricted Section."

Harry felt the blood drain out of his face. Wherever he was, Filch must know a shortcut, because his soft, greasy voice was getting nearer, and to his horror, it was Snape who replied, "The Restricted Section? Well, they can't be far, we'll catch them."

 

Snape always wants to find some students misbehaving, but here, we see Snape's hidden tactics to catch Quirell and protect the stone.  It shows how active he has remained until the troll incident.  That's why he asked Filch to keep an eye open.  Also, he is intelligent enough to suspect that if Quirell or someone else wants to pay a night visit to the Restricted Section, it means that they want something no one is supposed to have access to without arising suspicions.  Here, that would be how to pass Fluffy!  Snape's quite wize to make sure every path the rubbers want to take are watched!   And as a bonus, Snape gets the chance to catch a student!  Maybe he even suspects Potter of trying to find something about the stone since he saw his limping leg! 
 

"Will you stop messing around!" he yelled. "That's exactly the sort of thing that'll lose us the match! Snape's refereeing this time, and he'll be looking for any excuse to knock points off Gryffindor!"

George Weasley really did fall off his broom at these words. "Snape's refereeing?" he spluttered through a mouthful of mud. "When's he ever refereed a Quidditch match? He's not going to be fair if we might overtake Slytherin."

The rest of the team landed next to George to complain, too. "It's not my fault," said Wood. "We've just got to make sure we play a clean game, so Snape hasn't got an excuse to pick on us." Which was all very well, thought Harry, but he had another reason for not wanting Snape near him while he was playing Quidditch....

 

This is sooooo cute!!  The Gryffindors think Snape is trying to make them loose the match to favour Slytherin, while Snape is only trying to save Harry's butt!!  Talk about irony!!

 

 

Like Wood says, if they play clean, Snape will not interfere with them.  I'm sure Snape is only this severe with the Gryffindors because of their "courageous" and "show-off" characteristics.  That's not pejorative, it's just that Snape doesn't like it!  That's why anything will get Snape to penalize them. 

"A stone that makes gold and stops you from ever dying!" said Harry. "No wonder Snape's after it! Anyone would want it."

 

Really, I'm not sure Snape would want it!  Anyone yes, but Snape has already tasted what glory and power bring about!  It's still embedded on his left arm actually!
 

Harry didn't know whether he was imagining it or not, but he seemed to keep running into Snape wherever he went. At times, he even wondered whether Snape was following him, trying to catch him on his own. Potions lessons were turning into a sort of weekly torture, Snape was so horrible to Harry. Could Snape possibly know they'd found out about the Sorcerer's Stone? Harry didn't see how he could -- yet he sometimes had the horrible feeling that Snape could read minds.

 

Again, Snape is off to save Harry Potter's butt!  And at the same time, he must be thinking about following Quirell!  Since Quirell wants Harry dead, it's very likely that he needs protection.  Which is why Snape seems to be following him everywhere!  This is one important fact that convinces me that Snape is not only helping Harry because of his debt to his father, but also by duty.  So, why is Snape so pissed off with Potter?  Maybe because this is taking forever and Snape is not likely a babysitter, don't you think?  And maybe Harry goes places he shouldn't or where Snape has problems keeping an eye on him, so that makes him say: "Damn Potter!  Would you stop going where I can't assure your protection! "  Of course, Snape would never admit this to Harry!  And what about the fact that Snape actually can't help himself from protecting Harry?!  That must really make him angry!  He feels it's his duty to protect this "baby"!  An ungrateful brat in his opinion. That ought to be enough to make him angry at Harry in Potions where Snape is the sole master!
This got me thinking since Book5. Occlumency and Legilimency.. How does it actually work?  Snape said eye contact was a crucial point of Legilimency, and that Voldemort used it very often. That's how he finds out when people lie to him or not. But then, the "victim" of Legilimency always sees his own memories played in front of him. Therefore, it cannot be that exact spel. So, can Snape  use another version of the spell too? My guess is that he is just good at knowing or recognizing when someone lies to him or has some hidden plans.
 

"Dumbledore?" he said, dashing to the door to make sure. Fred was right. There was no mistaking that silver beard.

Harry could have laughed out loud with relief He was safe. There was simply no way that Snape would dare to try to hurt him if Dumbledore was watching.

Perhaps that was why Snape was looking so angry as the teams marched onto the field, something that Ron noticed, too.

"I've never seen Snape look so mean," he told Hermione. "Look -they're off Ouch!"

 

 

 

 

Snape is angry because Dumbledore is there, but only because this means that he is wasting his time as Quirell will not be able to do anything!!  
This is the episode where we learn that, all in all, Snape did not confine his suspicions to Dumbledore or at least, did not consult him when he asked to be made referee.  If he had known Dumbledore would be there, he would have stayed in the castle!  That he would! In a way, wasn't it the fact that Snape asked to be referee that got Dumbledore worried?  Snape would never do such a thing without having a good reason now would he?
 

Ron didn't answer; Snape had just awarded Hufflepuff a penalty because George Weasley had hit a Bludger at him. Hermione, who had all her fingers crossed in her lap, was squinting fixedly at Harry, who was circling the game like a hawk, looking for the Snitch.

"You know how I think they choose people for the Gryffindor team?" said Malfoy loudly a few minutes later, as Snape awarded Hufflepuff another penalty for no reason at all. "It's people they feel sorry for. See, there's Potter, who's got no parents, then there's the Weasleys, who've got no money -- you should be on the team, Longbottom, you've got no brains."

Ah!!  Vengeance!!  In fact, vengeance but with a very big nuance: Snape really is the kind of person that trusts nobody. Therefore, if he gets a bludger in the face, his instincts will automatically analyse this as an attack and never as an accident!  Snape really isn't the kind to wait and see.  He plans, he looks out, he watches carefully, he suspects... and then he draws conclusions!  
This makes me wonder: Is Snape trying to favor Slytherin?  Or is this payback time for arrogant Gryffindor?  Or, as it's Snape's habit, is he so furious to be wasting his time flying around to protect a boy who already has Dumbledore's watchful eye for himself that he is no mood at all to be fair at all? Maybe he  just tried to make the most of it!
 

Harry jumped off his broom, a foot from the ground. He couldn't believe it. He'd done it -- the game was over; it had barely lasted five minutes. As Gryffindors came spilling onto the field, he saw Snape land nearby, white-faced and tight-lipped -- then Harry felt a hand on his shoulder and looked up into Dumbledore's smiling face.

"Well done," said Dumbledore quietly, so that only Harry could hear.

"Nice to see you haven't been brooding about that mirror... been keeping busy... excellent..."

Snape spat bitterly on the ground.

 

I think Snape is still under the impression that Harry passed him by very closely on purpose.  And on top of that, the almighthy Gryffindor have won!  Like in James' time!  Not to mention the uselessness of refeering for the game in the first place!  Boy, that all together ought to make Snape quite bitter indeed!

 

 

Humm?  At first, I had problems imagining him spitting on the ground because for me, it's bad manners.  But then, I've seen in some movies about high-society people, back a 100 years or more, that used to spat when something really disgusted them, and they did in front of what caused it.  That would explain a lot, especially Snape's state of mind which would be disgusted by the "Harry Potter for President" mood or the fact that he had to refereed the whole game!  This "high-society" behaviour would also fit well with Snape's (very likely) old pure blood lineage.
 

And speaking of Snape...

A hooded figure came swiftly down the front steps of the castle. Clearly not wanting to be seen, it walked as fast as possible toward the forbidden forest. Harry's victory faded from his mind as he watched. He recognized the figure's prowling walk. Snape, sneaking into the forest while everyone else was at dinner -- what was going on?

Harry jumped back on his Nimbus Two Thousand and took off. Gliding silently over the castle he saw Snape enter the forest at a run. He followed.

The trees were so thick he couldn't see where Snape had gone. He flew in circles, lower and lower, brushing the top branches of trees until he heard voices. He glided toward them and landed noiselessly in a towering beech tree.

He climbed carefully along one of the branches, holding tight to his broomstick, trying to see through the leaves. Below, in a shadowy clearing, stood Snape, but he wasn't alone. Quirrell was there, too.

Harry couldn't make out the look on his face, but he was stuttering worse than ever. Harry strained to catch what they were saying.

"... d-don't know why you wanted t-t-to meet here of all p-places, Severus..."

"Oh, I thought we'd keep this private," said Snape, his voice icy.

"Students aren't supposed to know about the Philosopher's Stone, after all."

Harry leaned forward. Quirrell was mumbling something. Snape interrupted him.

"Have you found out how to get past that beast of Hagrid's yet?"

"B-b-but Severus, I --"

 

 

"You don't want me as your enemy, Quirrell," said Snape, taking a step toward him.

"I-I don't know what you

"You know perfectly well what I mean."

An owl hooted loudly, and Harry nearly fell out of the tree. He steadied himself in time to hear Snape say, "-- your little bit of hocus-pocus. I'm waiting."

"B-but I d-d-don't --"

"Very well," Snape cut in. "We'll have another little chat soon, when you've had time to think things over and decided where your loyalties lie."

He threw his cloak over his head and strode out of the clearing. It was almost dark now, but Harry could see Quirrell, standing quite still as though he was petrified.

 

 
Snape has a prowling kind of walk
How clever can that be?  He waits for everybody to be at dinner to go around and have a little chat with Quirell!  The only problem is that he kept his walking style!  But then again, it's hard to walk differently when you walk as fast as you can!   And JK Rowling did need Harry to get interested in the hooded figure!!  
Here, we see how much Snape wants to keep his secrets for himself.  Because, he just walked as fast as he could, not concealing his usual walking style, and then he runs.  As a Slytherin, Snape knows better than to arise suspicions and lose control of the situation.  Therefore, here, it means that he considered the rapidity of his little chat more important than him not being recognised.  I think it's because Snape didn't want others to associate him missing a meal at the same time Quirell did. He surely had to be back quickly.
I had not noticed the first time around, but Quirrell calls him Severus. However, as in other books, Snape always keeps to family names, except with Draco and Albus. I think names is an important factor for Snape. He needs to create or cut relationships with names. I know most people do that, but he does it even more than the other characters in Harry Potter books. He cuts himself off. That's why he wants to be called "sir" (especially in book5) or "professor". He won't accept familiarities. Except with Draco, hence, that brings us to wonder about his relationship with the boy. Uncle-like? Mentor? Father-like figure?
He does indeed like private matters.  This support my last statement as well as a couple of others where I said that what got Snape so mad about Harry was him getting into things that doesn't concern him.  Maybe it's for security or ethics, but one thing's for sure, Snape hates meddling people!
If the reason why Snape says he wants this conversation there because the students are not supposed to know, it also that students could somehow discover them anytime. But surely Snape is clever enough to find an appropriate place in the castle! Far from students' notice. Then why say this? Is this just a way to "introduce" the subject? I think so. Snape wanted a place where nobody could see them. There are a lot of  ghosts and creatures in Hogwarts, but not outside. So, yes, I think this was just a way to introduce the subject because it's not the students that Snape is afraid of alarming, it's the teachers.
This tells a lot about Snape's confidence in his magical abilities. He's not afraid of him or whomever Quirrell is working for. Snape's confident enough to call himself a serious threat to Quirrell's ambitions.
According to me, this portion demonstrates how Snape's mind works: he will be very honest about what he knows about his enemy.  Yet, he will never clearly say so.  He only speaks in riddle if you don't know what he's talking about.  (That's exactly what happened with Harry: he misinterpreted Snape's words)  This way of discussing with his enemies often comes back in the books.  Especially with Harry!  What is amazing is how he can be so truthful with his enemies and yet, say nothing!  He is more realistic because of this.  Unlike villains in some movies that keep talking about their plans to their enemies, Snape keeps that for himself.  He doesn't feel the need to explain himself, because he is 100% sure of what he says!  
The "hocus-pocus" refers to Quirell's attempt to kill Harry  
I just noticed how quickly Snape concluded that Quirrell would not cooperate.  He had just said "but I don't" and already, Snape moved on to his next plan, that is, of recommending him to think about the matter. He knows what game Quirrell is playing, he's playing the "I know nothing" act. Snape knows as much and doesn't raise to the bait, which is quite nice actually!  He is so sure of himself! He doesn't want to waste any time persuading him. I guess that's very Slytherin of him. A Gryffindor would have spent the whole night trying to convince him that he was wrong and all. But not Snape. Time was also important to him, so that's one of the reason he ran off so soon.
This episode could be highly controversial with Snape' supposed return to his spy days!  If Voldemort stands on the back of Quirell's head, he must have heard it all.  Therefore, when Snape asks him to think about his loyalties, it could be interpreted as "Are you on Dumbledore's side or not?"  Or maybe, it meant "Are you for the protection of the stone or not?" which could leave Snape free of loyalties towards Dumbledore! The latter is the only way for Voldemort to accept Snape back into his ranks, I think. Snape could say he thought only Quirrell was after the stone for himself and that he didn't want such a clown to get it. Something like that. 

"So we were right, it is the Philosopher's Stone, and Snape's trying to force Quirrell to help him get it. He asked if he knew how to get past Fluffy - and he said something about Quirrell's 'hocus pocus-- I reckon there are other things guarding the stone apart from Fluffy, loads of enchantments, probably, and Quirrell would have done some anti-Dark Arts spell that Snape needs to break through --"

"So you mean the Stone's only safe as long as Quirrell stands up to Snape?" said Hermione in alarm.

"It'll be gone by next Tuesday," said Ron.

 

Now here, I am ashamed of Harry's deductive powers!  Not the first part cause it does hold the road, but for the "Snape needs Quirell's anti-dark art spell".  No really, the whole school says Snape's after the Dark Arts job, so why would he need Quirell's spell, really?  Because JK Rowling needed a good alibi!  Ok, if that's what it takes!!  But, please, Snape is clever enough to break a Dark spell!  (Of course, at the time, they didn't know he was a Death Eater! I have to concede that)
However, I forgot to mention the fact that at least, the Trio is aware of Snape's persuasive powers. Maybe it's not quite a challenge against
the (what seems to be) a stuttering Quirrell, but still!   
 

Every time they passed the third-floor corridor, Harry, Ron, and Hermione would press their ears to the door to check that Fluffy was still growling inside. Snape was sweeping about in his usual bad temper, which surely meant that the Stone was still safe. Whenever Harry passed Quirrell these days he gave him an encouraging sort of smile, and Ron had started telling people off for laughing at Quirrell's stutter.

Snape usually sweeps about in his bad temper!
I guess this meant that Quirell didn't tell Snape where his loyalties lied yet! And Snape had to babysit the Stone all along. Unless, Snape would be much more happy!  Then again, maybe not!  Not until he could discover who was TRULY after the stone!! Surely not only Quirrell. For who was he working? That's our Snape! 
Also, maybe Snape was aware of the Trio checking on the dog, because, afterall, Rowling mentioned that Snape "seemed" to follow Harry. Therefore, in making sure Harry was safe and sound, he must have at least noticed how often they seemed to end up near the Third-Floor corridor!!  But he couldn't say anything without letting out his secrecy.
Another possibility for Snape's bad mood is the fact that the Trio were actually SMILING and ENCOURAGING their enemies, even though they were unaware of it!  I wish I could have heard Snape's thoughts whenever he saw such behaviour!!  Oh my!!  Nothing to enlighten his esteem in Harry's foolishness now is it!?
 

"Well, I don' s'pose it could hurt ter tell yeh that... let's see... he borrowed Fluffy from me... then some o' the teachers did enchantments...

Professor Sprout -- Professor Flitwick -- Professor McGonagall --" he ticked them off on his fingers, "Professor Quirrell -- an' Dumbledore himself did somethin', o' course. Hang on, I've forgotten someone. Oh yeah, Professor Snape."

"Snape?"

"Yeah -- yer not still on abou' that, are yeh? Look, Snape helped protect the Stone, he's not about ter steal it."

Harry knew Ron and Hermione were thinking the same as he was. If Snape had been in on protecting the Stone, it must have been easy to find out how the other teachers had guarded it. He probably knew everything -- except, it seemed, Quirrell's spell and how to get past Fluffy.

 

 

 

It's cool to know that Snape was one of the chosen!  Of course, he had to participate!  I mean, potions is an subtle art, and therefore, potions is not your everyday subject! Even in the wizarding world, that's what Snape said anyway in his opening speech.
Notice how Hagrid does not correct the appellation of "Snape". All the other teachers, whenever the Trio uses "Snape", tells them off about not using his title, "Professor Snape".

 

Again, Hagrid shows his total confidence in Snape, even though he must be quite mean to the half-giant!  Then again, that's not such a great deal since he also trusts Quirellette...sorry, Quirell! Hagrid's reason for trusting Snape is quite childish of course, but in the later books, he gives out more argument in favor of Snape, so that has to balance out his innocence.
 

"Snape wants the stone for Voldemort... and Voldemort's waiting in the forest... and all this time we thought Snape just wanted to get rich...."

 

Would Snape really want to be rich?  Good question.  I think he already is. Like many, I believe he comes from an old lineage of pureblood and Slytherins.  Therefore, money must have been very important to his family.  Because money equals power in this world!  Yep!
Update: In Book5, when James turned Snape upside-down, we learned that he had graying underpants. Which means dirty and old surely. And at that age, who buys you clothes? Your parents!  Now, were Snape's parents poor or neglecting? I vote for the latter!  But it could very well be the former too. Those were Snape's memories in Book5: "a hook-nosed man was shouting at a cowering woman, while a small dark-haired boy cried in a corner… a greasy-haired teenager sat alone in a dark bedroom, pointing his wand at the ceiling, shooting down flies…" Doesn't look like a happy family or childhood now does it?!  Also, Harry said Snape looked like a skinny plant who had lacked sun to grow strong. Hence, the idea of neglecting. House elves do the laundry in Hogwarts, they would get his clothes too. Therefore, it's not from lack of washing that his are like that!  It looks exactly like Harry's clothes when at the Dursleys!! I would even push it farther as to imply that Harry's being unable to forgive Snape is that he refuses to acknowledge the fact that they were just the same!  Harry, too, grew up like a plant in a dark room. But it hurts so much to admit the parallel that Harry can do nothing else but hate Snape as well. All the injustice he suffered, Snape reminds him of that explicitly and implicitly too. Even after he learned about Snape's treatment by James, he couldn't bring himself not to pity him a bit. It's too strong. Snape is Harry and the Dursleys at the same time, just as Harry is Snape and James at the same time for Severus.   
Also, Snape already worked for Voldemort, so, would he have done such a thing had this happened back in his Death Eater days?  I guess he would have because it meant brewing up a potion!  That's interesting!  Even though it must look quite appealing to a Potions Master to brew such a rare elixir, Snape has no intention whatsoever on the stone!  Good sense of ethics, really!
 

Snape made them all nervous, breathing down their necks while they tried to remember how to make a Forgetfulness potion.

 

This is pure Snape irony!  Making his students nervous and asking them to remember how to make a forgetfullness potion!  I bet he has a sly smile on his face too.  
Snape seems to love pressuring his students.  This goes along the lines of those who believe Snape is mean just to reinforce his students and prepare them for worst things.  I agree and always thought so myself!  Working under pressure must be something Snape experienced a lot, therefore, he is being "nice" and "preventful" to his students instead of plain annoying by helping them to learn how to concentrate under pressure!

"It's tonight," said Harry, once he was sure Professor McGonagall was out of earshot. "Snape's going through the trapdoor tonight. He's found out everything he needs, and now he's got Dumbledore out of the way. He sent that note, I bet the Ministry of Magic will get a real shock when Dumbledore turns up."

"But what can we --"

Hermione gasped. Harry and Ron wheeled round. Snape was standing there.

"Good afternoon," he said smoothly.

They stared at him.

"You shouldn't be inside on a day like this," he said, with an odd, twisted smile.

"We were --" Harry began, without any idea what he was going to say.

"You want to be more careful," said Snape. "Hanging around like this, people will think you're up to something. And Gryffindor really can't afford to lose any more points, can it?"

Harry flushed. They turned to go outside, but Snape called them back.

"Be warned, Potter -- any more nighttime wanderings and I will personally make sure you are expelled. Good day to you."

He strode off in the direction of the staffroom.

I have a big question: Why didn't Snape react to Dumbledore being sent an urgent note from the Ministry??  Why, why, why?  Again, because JK Rowling needed Harry to do things by himself?  I think that's the most propable thing.  And, maybe Snape ignored that Dumbledore was away!  In any case, you don't spend a whole year looking after a boy and a stone to end up not realising that things will not unfold when Dumbledore is mysteriously requested to leave Hogwarts!!
Snape's silent walking style!  Seems as effective as always!
This is one thing a lot of people love about Snape: his smooth voice.  Like a snake actually.  It's like he is trying to charm, to hypnotised with his voice in order to get what he wants.  He is Slytherin's Head after all! Draco and Lucius have the same kind of voice.
I really loved this part in the movie. Snape's eyes were incredible!  So expressive, especially when understanding dawned on him.  
(See image section - Gallery 7)
Snape really seems to know the Gryffindors by heart.  Like it will happen a couple of times later in the story or books, Snape knows exactly what Potter is thinking or what he has been doing.  Snape has always been the only member of Hogwarts, except Dumbledore, to see through Harry's pranks or quests.  
How sweet!!  This statement is so powerful. Snape knew Potter was there on the night when he talked to Quirell or the night he spend in the restricted section. Or both!  I think the second is more logical.  (I just realised while updating that before, I said the first option was more logical. I meant the second!)
And the "good day to you" final!  This is sarcasm at its best!  
 

"I'm sorry, Harry!" she wailed. "Snape came out and asked me what I was doing, so I said I was waiting for Flitwick, and Snape went to get him, and I've only just got away, I don't know where Snape went."

 

Snape never seems to avoid working or doing things when it comes to duty.  He sees every possible detail as important (would have loved Sherlock Holmes).  I doubt he would not have left Hermione on her own if he had not suspected that she was there on purpose.  Especially since she was next to the third-floor door.  
 

He pulled open the next door, both of them hardly daring to look at what came next - but there was nothing very frightening in here, just a table with seven differently shaped bottles standing on it in a line.

"Snape's," said Harry. "What do we have to do?"

They stepped over the threshold, and immediately a fire sprang up behind them in the doorway. It wasn't ordinary fire either; it was purple. At the same instant, black flames shot up in the doorway leading onward.

They were trapped.

"Look!" Hermione seized a roll of paper lying next to the bottles. Harry looked over her shoulder to read it:

Danger lies before you, while safety lies behind,
Two of us will help you, which ever you would find,
One among us seven will let you move ahead,
Another will transport the drinker back instead,
Two among our number hold only nettle wine,
Three of us are killers, waiting bidden in line.
Choose, unless you wish to stay here forevermore,

To help you in your choice, we give you these clues four:
First, however slyly the poison tries to hide
You will always find some on nettle wine's left side;
Second, different are those who stand at either end,
But if you would move onward, neither is your friend;
Third, as you see clearly, all are different size,
Neither dwarf nor giant holds death in their insides;
Fourth, the second left and the second on the right

Are twins once you taste them, though different at first sight.

Hermione let out a great sigh and Harry, amazed, saw that she was smiling, the very last thing he felt like doing.

"Brilliant," said Hermione. "This isn't magic -- it's logic -- a puzzle. A lot of the greatest wizards haven't got an ounce of logic, they'd be stuck in here forever."

"But so will we, won't we?" "Of course not," said Hermione. "Everything we need is here on this paper. Seven bottles: three are poison; two are wine; one will get us safely through the black fire, and one will get us back through the purple."

"But how do we know which to drink?"

"Give me a minute."

Did you tried Snape's Riddle in my misc section??  You should go there right now and try it!! It's just like in the book!! 
 If you didn't do it, don't read this before or you'll know the answer!!

 

The idea is so witty !  

 

In this, we also see Snape's personality.  He offers the person to die or get drunk out of pure lack of logic OR he offers him to go back or forward.  This is clever, in the sense that Snape has planned an escape for someone to get help or abandon before it was too late.  
But the best of it is that he planned all of this keeping in mind that no magic was of any use here!   Snape, with his experience, must know that the wizarding world is often too found of "wand waving".  This is exactly what he said in class and here it is in practice!  Brilliant!  Snape truly remains in character: he thinks people are dunderheads and heroes, so he designed an anti-dunderhead and anti-hero riddle.
My only regret: the riddle was still too easy!! It took me about 20 minutes to get it without the visual alignment (I had to try all the possible ways from scratch because the riddle is a visual one).  That's why I recreated the riddle with the visual alignment.  I think that JK Rowling designed it herself, so that's why it had an easy solution.  You can't invent brainteasers just out of thin air!  But still, I think it was such a good idea, regardless of how difficult it was!  I know a lot of people who would panic just mentioning they have to solve a riddle! Rowling, even though she doesn't like Snape, still bestowed him with cleverness!

 

 

I'm pretty sure this is where a lot of people matched Hermione and Snape together as a couple. Especially if you consider that the majority of fan-fiction writers who write Snape romances using Hermione. Maybe because, though the Trio still thought he was bad, she said it was a brilliant idea.  The kind she loves to solve! I think so too! Hermione has always respected Snape's intelligence and has been very hard to convince that he was bad in the first book. In the other books, no matter what happened, she always trusted Snape. She trusted his intelligence and the facts, and still, she respects him even though Snape's been a Death Eater or caused Harry so much trouble (from Harry's point of view). With Book5, I think even more people will like the match because, as you will discover in my analysis of it, Hermione had exactly the same reaction as Snape after the OWLs!  They revised it to make sure they got the right answers, just like people who like studying and learning do (I should know because I'm like that all the time! Did I mention my family started calling me Hermione?! 0_0 And not because I told them anything!) Hence, it proves my theory that Snape is indeed an intellectual, a perfectionist, and a man who cares about knowledge.    

"But I thought -- Snape --"

"Severus?" Quirrell laughed, and it wasn't his usual quivering treble, either, but cold and sharp. "Yes, Severus does seem the type, doesn't he? So useful to have him swooping around like an overgrown bat. Next to him, who would suspect p-p-poor, st-stuttering P-Professor Quirrell?"

Harry couldn't take it in. This couldn't be true, it couldn't.

"But Snape tried to kill me!"

"No, no, no. I tried to kill you. Your friend Miss Granger accidentally knocked me over as she rushed to set fire to Snape at that Quidditch match. She broke my eye contact with you. Another few seconds and I'd have got you off that broom. I'd have managed it before then if Snape hadn't been muttering a countercurse, trying to save you."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Snape was trying to save me?"

"Of course," said Quirrell coolly. "Why do you think he wanted to referee your next match? He was trying to make sure I didn't do it again. Funny, really... he needn't have bothered. I couldn't do anything with Dumbledore watching. All the other teachers thought Snape was trying to stop Gryffindor from winning, he did make himself unpopular...and what a waste of time, when after all that, I'm going to kill you tonight."

 

 
I bet Snape would have killed Quirell on the spot had he heard that!!  Not truly because of the bat comparison, but because of being so useful to Quirrell!!  Note that Remus Lupin, in Book3, mentioned something to that effect, too. Hence, a lot of speculations has been going around over Snape's relationship with vampires or animagus. However, I do believe Severus intelligent enough not to announce hard and loud that Remus is a werewolf while he was a vampire... Remus would have taken his revenge right away, I mean!  Remus is too nice a man to do it first, but he's not stupid!  Had he known, we would all have known!  I personally don't believe in this "vampire" theory because of that. The only fact I'm ready to concede is the possibility of one of Snape's family members to have been a vampire, though the chances are pretty thin.  If you had a vampire for a grandfather and didn't want  the secret to be out, would you go around wearing such clothes?!  Snape is not thick!  
Hey! How stupid can that be?! I forgot to write about this part before! I apologize... Again, notice the use of "Severus"'s first name. Quirrell seems so much closer to him than Snape ever allowed it. I'm wondering if he's been using his first name for a long time (because Quirrell apparently taught at Hogwarts for a long time, too)?  Maybe, but my question is: Did Snape referred to him with his first name prior to Quirrell's travel and transformation? Hum...?  Knowing him, I'd say he doesn't like to use first names, except for Albus and maybe some unknown friends. A good example would be Minerva. Each time Snape is being addressed as "Severus", he always answers using the interlocutor's family name.  
Other important point I forgot to mention before: although Quirrell is definitely insulting Snape, he still (at least) doesn't say anything negative about his counter-curse. Hence, Snape's counter-curse did prove quite effective if Quirrell didn't dismiss it as "a stupid insignificant" one. And it WAS Dark magic!
Lots of people have been wondering if Snape ever learnt who set fire to his robes, right? Well, if Quirrell knew it was Hermione, why wouldn't Snape? Maybe he did and never mentioned it because that would have meant revealing his plans to others and how would that have served him? Harry was already saved, wasn't he? Maybe he understood what happened when he saw Quirrell knocked over. It's only logical if Snape saw him, but we may never know for sure!
"Of course" he was trying to save Harry. Wow! Quirrell says it himself!  Even "Mr. Possessed" in this book acknowledges the fact that the only reason Snape would do such a thing was to save Harry!  Death Eater Snape, be gone!! Quirrell says "of course" as if there were no other possibilities at all to explain Snape's doings. And let's not forget Snape even went to the extend of referring a match to make sure Harry was safe. Hence, it also ascertains the fact that Quirrell's Dark jinx was quite powerful, because Snape judged it sufficiently dangerous to want to be near Harry if it ever happened again.  It shows how Snape's still up-to-date with his counter-spells!  And we like that, don't we?!
I believe that what Quirell also finds funny is that he must have noticed how Snape felt when Dumbledore showed up for the game!! 
This is a great hommage to Snape: he doesn't bother with what other teachers say, even if it makes him unpopular.  He does what he has to, and that was keeping an eye on Harry. Do you know a lot of people who would have done so if their reputation was at stake?   
It also shows how little the other teachers trust Snape when it comes to House matters.  Must be because he favors Slytherins all the time. But then, why wouldn't he try to referee more often if that was his real purpose?  For me, this shows how Snape favors Slytherins out of political matters! But still, they thought Snape was trying to stop Gryffindor from winning.  Why?  It was the first time in years Gryffindor had a good seeker if I'm not mistaken, but to think that Snape would resolve to such drastic measures to win the House Quidditch Cup yet again... not in my opinion!  Yet, that's the only logical reason the other teachers found, didn't they? Had it been any other teacher, I wonder what they would have thought?  Can you imagine McGonnagal on a broom?!  Haha!
 

"You let the troll in?"

"Certainly. I have a special gift with trolls -- you must have seen what I did to the one in the chamber back there? Unfortunately, while everyone else was running around looking for it, Snape, who already suspected me, went straight to the third floor to head me off -- and not only did my troll fail to beat you to death, that three-headed dog didn't even manage to bite Snape's leg off properly.

 

If Snape was already suspecting him, maybe something happened before or he meant from that moment when Quirrell came screaming like a little girl into the Great Hall.  I think the episode with the burning scar at the Great Feast was the thing that  could have tipped Snape off.  Or, Snape must have known that to get a troll in Hogwarts, you had to be able to handle them first, and maybe he knew Quirrell could do that.  Hence, if Snape knew that beforehand, he would know right away that Quirrell (fainting in front of everybody) was just acting!  If someone's good with trolls, one doesn't have to faint faced with one!
Isn't anyone wondering why Quirrell never tried to get rid of Snape? There are different answers: Snape was not considered important or powerful enough by Quirrell or, on the contrary, getting rid of him would have proved too difficult or would have attracted too much attention (but then again, just killing Harry would attract attention, right!) or he knew that Snape would act in secret because he wouldn't tell other teachers (due to unpopularity or lack of confidence).
 

"I saw you and Snape in the forest --" he blurted out. "Yes," said Quirrell idly, walking around the mirror to look at the back. "He was on to me by that time, trying to find out how far I'd got.

He suspected me all along. Tried to frighten me - as though he could, when I had Lord Voldemort on my side...."

 

That's our Snape!

 

This kind of means that Snape would have scared him off had Voldemort been absent!  Who knows?  
 

"But Snape always seemed to hate me so much."

"Oh, he does," said Quirrell casually, "heavens, yes. He was at Hogwarts with your father, didn't you know? They loathed each other. But he never wanted you dead."

 

The truth is out!  So indeed, Snape hates Harry a lot BUT never to the point of killing him, something we could never say from a Malfoy for example. Hence, it's a good point in favor of Snape!! And Quirrell said "never":  therefore, Voldemort or not, Snape never had any intentions of killing Harry. It may proof a small clue to fit all the puzzle's pieces together concerning what made Snape turn side.  He did before Voldemort planned to kill Harry anyway, because we once learned from the pensieve that Snape changed side at great personal risks BEFORE the attempted attack on Harry. To get back to what Quirrell says, I think Rowling shows that there is a very strict line between killing, loathing and hating¸ in this book.
I forgot to mention that here, Quirrell does look like he knows a lot about our dear Potions Master.  He knows his past at Hogwarts, at least, concerning James Potter. The interesting fact is that, as an explanation as to why Snape hates Harry, the first and only reason that Quirrell provides is the loathsome relationship between Severus and James.   And thanks to Book5, we know a little more why that is as such!
 

"Quirrell said Snape --"

"Professor Snape, Harry." "Yes, him -- Quirrell said he hates me because he hated my father. Is that true?"

"Well, they did rather detest each other. Not unlike yourself and Mr. Malfoy. And then, your father did something Snape could never forgive."

"What?"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"He saved his life."

"What?"

"Yes..." said Dumbledore dreamily. "Funny, the way people's minds work, isn't it? Professor Snape couldn't bear being in your father's debt....

I do believe he worked so hard to protect you this year because he felt that would make him and your father even. Then he could go back to hating your father's memory in peace...."

Harry tried to understand this but it made his head pound, so he stopped.

 

 

 

Humm?  But Malfoy is very bad!  Was Snape that bad, too?  Harry has all the reasons of the world to hate Malfoy!  But had James all the reasons to hate Snape?  Did they have something of common interest, like Lily? Maybe. Here is where Book5 comes in handy: we learn that the Marauders, especially Sirius, use to harass Severus for the good reason of him being "Snape". Wow!!  What a very upcoming and mature reason to do so. No, really!  I've been verbally bullied at school for just wearing glasses and holding up the title of the school's Know-it-all, I have my doubts whether the harassment was founded.  However, we could argue that  it was an "eye for eye" relationship. Or we could say that Snape's interest in the Dark Arts brought upon him the loathing of James, who we learned, hated the Dark Arts experts.   But still, I believe that Snape (see the chapter "Snape's worst memory" in Book5) got such bad memories from his encounters with the Marauders, not to mention that he seemed all alone and unpopular (a position in which both Harry and Draco are not often found in) that  this was enough for Snape to hate James and all his descendants! Humiliation is the gravest of all, I learned that from a real friend of mine, a Bosnian who lived in a Serb-ruled concentration camp for 3months. "Physical pain is nothing compared to humiliation", he said. In my friend's case, he said he would never again trust a Serb however good-hearted a Serb may look, though he said he could never kill one. I make the parallel between him and Snape, who, in this case, will never again trust a Potter unless a miracle happens!  
Ok, he saved his life.  But is it again, only that?  Dumbledore must be handing out a clue (because that's how Rowling usually works!): Snape worked very hard this year to save Harry because he owned it to James for saving his life a looonnng time ago. A debt he could never pay when James was alive it seems. However, we do know that Snape told Harry he believed his father was in on the werewolf prank, and therefore, that's why he hates him the more.  But on the other hand, Quirrell says Snape would never hate Harry as much as to want to kill him. What are we to understand then?   Snape has enough ethics to want to save Harry, life-debt or nor, because he did it yet again in the next four books! One cleared. Now, would he have worked so hard to protect Harry had he not have this life-debt?  We can guess again and again, though my opinion is that it doesn't take Snape such a guilty feeling to do the right thing. At least, not this guilty feeling, maybe another, as many fan-fiction authors put it, a "I've-been-a-Death-Eater-and-must-atone-for-my-crimes" kind of guilt. Of course, we should put importance on what Dumbledore thinks, but in Book5 especially, Rowling proved us that we should not take his every word for granted. Hence, I dare doubt it! I'm basing myself a lot on Quirrell's reaction: he was very evil and twisted at the time, yet, he said that Snape would never want Harry dead. Dumbledore says now Snape can go back to hating James and his offspring in peace... but it's not so at all. He more than once saved his butt afterwards. Makes you wonder, doesn't it! Maybe what Rowling meant is that, of course, Snape will always protect Harry, but that this year, he outdid himself!  But, that would be putting little importance on his guilt as a Death Eater that so many of you think he feels (I do too of course). Humiliation is one thing, but I think guilt is it's opposite feeling, it's as strong as the former, and makes you act in very surprising ways!  
And if Snape was indeed in love with Lily, well, he must have enough respect for her memory and try to save her son!  
Our heads pound too!
 

He clapped his hands. In an instant, the green hangings became scarlet and the silver became gold; the huge Slytherin serpent vanished and a towering Gryffindor lion took its place. Snape was shaking Professor McGonagall's hand, with a horrible, forced smile. He caught Harry's eye and Harry knew at once that Snape's feelings toward him hadn't changed one jot. This didn't worry Harry. It seemed as though life would be back to normal next year, or as normal as it ever was at Hogwarts.

 

Again, the competition between Minerva and Severus!  I think this year, Snape was displeased because points were awarded to Gryffindors for not obeying rules, which is one of Snape's motto!  "Obey or don't get caught without a plausible reason" That would explain why Snape looked at Potter when he congratulated Minerva!  He hated him as much because Harry is still like his father!! Getting points and being praised for it. If the others's reaction was not that of "adoring the boy who lived", I guess Snape wouldn't be so keen on associating him with his father.
 

Hey, that's the end of the first book Snape analysis!!  Wow! 
My shoulders hurt!!  And my hands too!! 
This is a lot, but I like that!
 I've always got 90% and up in literature analysis!  Hope I had the touch for this one,
though I did keep the register and phrasing simple enough for almost everyone to understand! The audience is quite international afterall!

For any comments or things you might be
wondering or questionning yourself about, e-mail me!!