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The family tree info - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
The family tree info
Okay, so JKR decided to give us more of the Black family tree (reported here at Leaky)--or, well, to write more of it and sell it for charity, anyway--including one Dorea Black who married a Charles Potter. Her dates are 1920-1977, and it's speculated that they are James's parents.

First, two caveats. One is that the way the pure-blood families are, there almost certainly would be more than one Black-Potter union, so even if these are James's parents, it's probably not the only place that he's related or the only path around. The second is that the dates don't quite sync up--if Sirius kept coming to dinner after Hogwarts and Dorea died in 1977, she's a very handy ghost in the kitchen. It would also hardly make them "elderly." That said, standard disclaiminer about Rowling and dates. She could very well mean Dorea to be the mother and just didn't think that through all that clearly. There is, after all, a "Flint" in the first line. ;)

Okay, caveats out of the way, let's pretend. ;P

By the pictured chart, Dorea is Phineas Nigellus's granddaughter. Sirius is his great-great grandson. There are two possible lines, one a generation closer than the other, but the same progression, so I'll just note it.

Dorea and Sirius's grandfather could be either first cousins or siblings.

Dorea and Sirius's mother would either be aunt/niece or first cousins once removed, which means that James and Mrs. Black are either first or second cousins, and James and Sirius are either first or second, once removed.

Harry and Sirius are either second or third cousins. Both are great-great grandsons of Phineas Nigellus. Bellatrix, Andromeda, and Narcissa are also Harry's either second or third cousins.

Which means that Draco is either Harry's second or third cousin, once removed either way.

Dorea is also descended from the Bulstrodes, but I didn't spot anything to indicate how closely Millicent is related. :D

I'm willing to bet that the burn mark in Phineas's generation is the line that became the Weasleys and/or Prewetts.

PS: The authors were apparently all just given a blank piece of paper to fill out for the auction, which bolsters the sort of "Um, thinking quickly and improvising here..." idea, and which also amuses me, because given a blank piece of paper, JKR chose to fill it up with the Ancient and Most Noble, etc, etc, etc.

Oh, and drat... Phineas isn't old enough to be Dumbledore's headmaster. And for someone who insists wizards have long life spans, she didn't give many out!
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tree_and_leaf From: tree_and_leaf Date: January 28th, 2006 05:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
including one Dorea Black who married a Charles Potter. Her dates are 1920-1977, and it's speculated that they are James's parents.

I suspect that if Dorea and Charles were James' parents, they'd have been blasted off for giving aid and comfort to Prodigal Blood Traitor Son Sirius....
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 28th, 2006 05:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
Another valid point against it, especially since she did, in fact, draw in the burn marks.

I'm torn. Part of me wants them to be James's parents so we'd know how they're all related. Another part of me is like, "No! I want to make that up!" ;P
snorkackcatcher From: snorkackcatcher Date: January 28th, 2006 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
That said, standard disclaiminer about Rowling and dates. She could very well mean Dorea to be the mother and just didn't think that through all that clearly.

The fact that she notes down "1s" as the only offspring and suggested in an interview that James was a late and only child makes me think she might have intended them to be. If Charles and Dorea (not Diana? :D) were his parents she'd have been about forty. But yeah, #include "standard_disclaimer.h" as always. :)

Oh, and drat... Phineas isn't old enough to be Dumbledore's headmaster.

Personal double drat: he isn't old enough to have been headmaster in 1850 (unless he was one hell of an infant prodigy) at the time I want to set the publication date of Nature's Nobility for my Omniocular challenge fic. :)
From: divinereverie Date: January 29th, 2006 07:06 am (UTC) (Link)
Do you know where the reference is to him having been headmaster in 1850? Because I can't find it! :(
hiddenhibiscus From: hiddenhibiscus Date: January 28th, 2006 06:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Did you get the Arcturus Black reference? He's not in the Lexicon and I can't remember where he was referenced in the books.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 28th, 2006 06:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
That was the middle name that the Lex put up (and abruptly removed, since it went with an alleged confirmation about R.A.B.) as Regulus's middle name.
toastedcheese From: toastedcheese Date: January 28th, 2006 06:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Is there any hard evidence that Sirius was definitely having dinner at the Potters after they left Hogwarts? I remember something along the lines of "I was always welcome for Sunday dinner," but that might just mean he visited them occasionally in the time after he got his own flat and before they died. (That could even include the summer after their seventh year, if the Potters died late in 1977.)

All this time I was hoping that JKR wasn't directly responsible for the loopy dates for the Wizards of the Month, since those don't match up with her "long wizarding lifespan" notion either. Now I think we just have to blame it on the maths. Oh well.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 28th, 2006 06:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think that JKR just really needs a date-checker, just like I need a Brit-picker. But to be fair, handing her a sheet of paper and saying "Fill it" doesn't really invite much checking.
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sea_thoughts From: sea_thoughts Date: January 28th, 2006 07:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's 'Charlus' Potter. Not Charles. ^^;;

Oh, and anyone notice Harfang Longbottom? That slightly worried me... being that Harfang is the home of the giants in The Silver Chair, and if you're read that book, you know what they're like. >.> Of course, it could just mean that Jo sees him as someone with big teeth!
courtaud From: courtaud Date: January 29th, 2006 01:01 am (UTC) (Link)
I think it's another name for 'snow owl'.
rose_in_shadow From: rose_in_shadow Date: January 28th, 2006 09:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
If the Potters and Blacks are related, why didn't Sirius tell Harry? He had plenty of opportunity in OotP. I'm sure Harry would have loved to find out that he had a cousin x-times removed in Tonks and in the Weasleys.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 28th, 2006 09:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Because Sirius was totally focused on the things that annoyed him about it, I think.
midnitemaraud_r From: midnitemaraud_r Date: January 28th, 2006 10:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think Charlus was a sibling of James' father or grandfather. James may have been an only child, but if the Potters are a pureblood wizarding family, you'd have to think there were more than just James and his parents, then their parents and grandparents and so forth. They likely weren't ALL single child families after all.

And while I can't recall what McGonagall calls Neville's Gran, I'm pretty sure it's not Callidora, so Harfang could be Gran Longbottom's brother-in-law (husband's brother).

The Black family tree is only going to show those who married a Black and their direct descendants after all, not the siblings of those who married them. It's funny how the first assumption is that there's only one "line" in each of the families. Probably because we all thrive on any piece of information we can get our hands on. :)

But yeah - I don't think she thought it completely through because when Harry sees the tapestry, you'd think the name Potter (and Longbottom next to it) would be a little more obvious to him than Weasley and Malfoy.
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sreya From: sreya Date: January 28th, 2006 10:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, I just love JKR's subheading for The Ancient And Most Noble House of Black -- "there are many stories between the lines"

*grins* Doesn't that just sound like a fanfic motto?
hughroe From: hughroe Date: January 28th, 2006 10:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Guess I've got to see the big one, can't really read the small one I've seen (it's these 50 year old eyes of mine.)
But please correct me if I am wrong, but didn't Sirius say that he was only related to Arthur because of his marriage to Molly?
Almost sounds like there are 2 groups of purebloods in England, the "aristocrats", and the Weasleys.
muridae_x From: muridae_x Date: January 28th, 2006 11:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
No, Sirius and Arthur are related too, but a couple of generations further back. He and Molly are cousins by marriage, and Arthur's a second cousin once removed.

A friend and I once tried to figure out a possible Black family tree from the available facts, and it made my head explode. And the need to keep killing off comparatively youthful wizards and witches was also fairly apparent in the course of it. I think in the end we blamed most of it on either Voldemort or Grindelwald, or tragic deaths in childbirth, but the ages are a definite problem.
themegaloo From: themegaloo Date: January 28th, 2006 11:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
What i don't get about it is that if there's a Potter on there and Harry was looking at the thing, it's pretty likely he would notice his won last name, right?

I would.

But it certainly isn't mentioned in the book!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 28th, 2006 11:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
Depends on how far away it was--it's a big family tree with lots and lots of names!
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prettyveela From: prettyveela Date: January 29th, 2006 12:10 am (UTC) (Link)
Dang now I have a headache trying to figure this all out. I just thought it was cool she let us have some names to toy with, lol.

The authors were apparently all just given a blank piece of paper to fill out for the auction, which bolsters the sort of "Um, thinking quickly and improvising here..." idea, and which also amuses me, because given a blank piece of paper, JKR chose to fill it up with the Ancient and Most Noble, etc, etc, etc.

Oh I didn't know she was just given a piece of paper to write on so yes in the heat of the moment I could see her just writing down some "history" for the auction. I would hope that JKR is now aware of how much her fanbase pays attention to everything she does, even if it is off the cuff and not important to her or her story.


Another reason Harry might not have noticed his name, is because the tapestry he saw didn't have the information JKR is giving us, so that's why she's giving it now.

As for Sirius not telling Harry that he and James were related, he does tell Harry "All pure blood families are related."

snorkackcatcher From: snorkackcatcher Date: January 29th, 2006 12:40 am (UTC) (Link)
Check the Leaky's scan of the article: as I read it the authors weren't actually given a piece of paper and told to make something up on the spot. They were given a brief of filling a piece of paper with something and had to include the phrase "between the lines" in some way. They apparently had quite a while to do that. In short, they were asked to do the pro equivalent of a fic challenge. :)

But yes, once Harry hears that "all the pureblood families are related" he should be able to figure out that he has a distant link to Sirius, the Weasleys, the Malfoys, etc. Trouble is, he doesn't care about purity of blood so doesn't think much about it -- he even overlooked the fact that his own dad was pureblood for a little while when wondering if he might have been the HBP.
elsie From: elsie Date: January 29th, 2006 04:02 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you for this. As an H/D lover, it's weird for me to think about them being anything more than very very VERY distantly related, despite the fact that I don't actually mind cestfic. I just don't want that element in my H/D. And I simply can't believe that Jo would deliberately make Harry this nearly related to the Malfoys, Sirius, Bellatrix, and the gang.

Plus, I'd say those are close enough relations to count as "family" and Jo has also said he has no living family.

I think I've rationalized myself back into a good mood!
silver_osiris From: silver_osiris Date: January 29th, 2006 05:06 am (UTC) (Link)
As an H/D lover, it's weird for me to think about them being anything more than very very VERY distantly related

Agreed. ^_^
alkari From: alkari Date: January 29th, 2006 09:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
I wonder where "Uncle Alphard" fits in? Given that Sirius called Elladora "Aunt" even though it should have been prefaced by several 'greats', was Alphard a great uncle, or a great, great uncle? In my fic, I had actually assumed he was a great uncle, and that as with Elladora, Sirius simply omitted the 'great'.

I too am surprised that the tree still includes the Potters (assuming they are James ' parents): firstly, they would have been seen as 'encouraging' Sirius to leave home, and secondly, son James married a Muggle. ENough to blast that whole family off the tree surely, especially of the same had been done to the Weasleys / Prewetts.

And for those talking about the Longbottom link, we have to remember that Neville's grandmother would not have been borm a Longbottom: she would have married into the family and thus acquired the surname. So Harfang Longbottom would at best have been Neville's uncle, or most probably his great uncle. He would haver been related by marriage to Augusta.
olympe_maxime From: olympe_maxime Date: January 30th, 2006 08:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
THANK you for telling me where I'd heard of an "Aunt Elladora"! It has been driving me bonkers for the past 30 minutes..
From: rlginny Date: January 29th, 2006 09:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
So here's my deal on the "James related to Sirius" thing. I'm sure, as the Potters seem to be an old fmaily as well, that they are probably way far back somehow, somewhere related. But I really really really doubt that Charlus is Harry's grandfather for one big reason.

I'm pretty sure we know, as fact, that Mrs. Black didn't die until after Harry was born and Voldie was "thrown into oblivion" (I could be wrong, but I think I'm right on that). Well...if Andromeda was blasted off for marrying a Muggle, surely -- SURELY -- at least James would be blasted off for daring to have Harry. And, has anyone noticed that the son does not have a line? Draco's on that thing. If that *is* Harry's father then Lily and Harry would be on there as well.

So in other words -- nice theory, but no go.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 29th, 2006 09:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
True--James and Andromeda did both marry Muggle-borns, so if one should be blasted off, the other should be (on the same-crime, same punishment rule). However, the "1s" could very well be someone whose line was simply not recorded; he'd be a further relation than the Black girls, and Mrs. Black may have simply refused to acknowledge his marriage or any of his progeny.

(I doubt she'd be too peeved by the fact that Harry defeated Voldemort; even Sirius admits that his parents stopped supporting Voldemort when they realized what he really meant to do, and by then, her younger son had died, probably on Voldemort's orders.)
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