Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

by: J. K. Rowling

Chapter Twelve: The Polyjuice Potion

Summary Chapter Twelve: The Polyjuice Potion

While Ron and Harry do not find out who the Heir of Slytherin is, the entire event is significant as it reveals to Ron the location of the secret vault under the Malfoy Manor, and furthermore it shows in full color the snobbery of the Slytherins, and it hints at a certain inbred stupidity that exists among the members of the house. Crabbe and Goyle are incomparably stupid, eating the cake Hermione left near the staircase, speaking-or not speaking-with such denseness that Malfoy is able to mistake the clueless, disguised Ron and Harry for the equally clueless real Crabbe and Goyle. Ron notes that only when bewildered does Harry looks exactly like Goyle. The two clearly were not admitted to Hogwarts on account of their wits. The password to the Slytherin common room is "pure blood," the unchanging house philosophy, as opposed to the Gryffindor word, always quirky and often changing. The Slytherins succeed in wizardry by connections through blood and exclusion, yielding a snobbery evident in Malfoy and his two daft acolytes. Nobody connected with Slytherin House is, as far as we can see, redeemable; Snape, Malfoy, Millicent, Crabbe and Goyle are all extremely unappealing, and lacking in rudimentary kindness, fairness, and goodness. It is no surprise that Voldemort was produced from this house; although he was cleverer than Malfoy, he was equally low and creepy.