Happy Birthday Harry

Noah Levy, my friend Carmi’s son

Today we celebrate birthdays. Lots of them. Harry turns 39 today, Noah, my friend Carmi’s son, is 19 years old, and I hit the famed age of 52. I’ve lived longer than anyone ever expected, including myself.

Today we are in good company.

Neville Longbottoms birthday was yesterday, the 30th of July. He would also be 39 years old this year.

Saturday July 30 Today we Celebrate Neville Longbottom’s Birthday

neville birthday july 30

The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord ( Lord Voldemort) approaches … born to those who have thrice defied him ( that’s Harry Potter), born as the seventh month dies … and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not … and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives … the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies …

Neville was the other boy, the prophecy could have mentioned, as he was born at the same period of time that Harry had been. But Voldemort decided to go and kill Lily and James, instead of Neville’s parents. Bellatrix Lestrange tortured his parents into insanity and ended up in St. Mungo’s where we find them in The Order of the Phoenix, in “Christmas in the Closed Ward” chapter.

In the end it was Neville who “killed Nagini, the last Horcrux.”

Neville was born on July 30th 1980, which makes him the same age as Harry, 36 …

From his first days at Hogwarts, Neville was a target for bullies and mean teachers (we’re looking at you, Snape!) He seemed to be a liability in the classroom, not to mention those perilous situations he and his friends kept finding themselves in. In spite of this, Neville’s unwavering loyalty meant he never shied away from danger.

While Harry, Ron and Hermione were hunting Horcruxes in Deathly Hallows, Neville led the rebellion at Hogwarts. After rallying the troops, a war-torn Neville throws himself into combat armed with Mandrakes (he knows his Herbology!) and accepts an important task from Harry – ‘kill the snake’.

It looks like the battle is lost. Neville stands alone and unarmed against Lord Voldemort himself. As punishment for his defiance he is forced into wearing the Sorting Hat, which Voldemort sets ablaze. But Neville breaks free, pulling forth the sword of Godric Gryffindor…

Between his botched potions and runaway toad Trevor, we always felt a bit sorry for Neville. We didn’t know much about him except that he came from a proud wizarding family and his grandmother Augusta raised him to uphold that honour. However, Neville’s shortcomings masked a tragedy that, for many years, he kept to himself.

When Neville was a baby, his parents Frank and Alice Longbottom were tortured to insanity with the Cruciatus Curse. Though he dutifully visits them in hospital, the couple appear to be husks of their former selves, handing Neville empty sweet wrappers. We see this play out in the heartbreaking chapter ‘Christmas on the Closed Ward’.

‘Neville, put that wrapper in the bin, she must have given you enough of them to paper your bedroom by now.’ But as they left, Harry was sure he saw Neville slip the sweet wrapper into his pocket.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

How did the nervous lad with the love of plants grow up to face the Dark Lord? Simple – he never gave up.

Neville didn’t seek sympathy or wallow in despair. Instead he took his pain and channeled it into his training. Spurred by news of the Death Eaters’ escape, he strove to avenge his parents and prevent more innocents from suffering their dreadful fate. The Sorting Hat was right – deep down, Neville Longbottom had the heart of a lion.

Neville’s story is an inspiration to us all. It doesn’t matter how many cauldrons you’ve melted; with hard work and courage, you can still be a hero.

Happy Birthday Neville …

Happy Birthday Neville Longbottom

Neville

“No matter about all the shortfalls he had, he just came through. It was really brilliant to play the evolution.” – Matthew Lewis

Who knew, that Neville would grow up to be such a great young man. Neville, who was the other boy named in the prophecy about Harry. But Voldemort chose to go after Lily and James, instead of Neville’s parents.

Bellatrix was the witch who took Neville’s parents, who ended up in St. Mungo’s.

Neville cemented his place in the pantheon of the Harry Potter Story.

Happy Birthday Neville.