|We must've been through hundreds of books already and we can't find him anywhere —|
Prince is the surname of a wizarding family, who may be pure-blood. It is unknown if this family is still extant, as the only known family member, Eileen Prince, married a Muggle and had a half-blood son.
If the family were pure-blood, and Eileen was an only child, the family may no longer be deemed pure bloods. However, if Eileen had other siblings, then the rest of her family could still be pure-bloods. Upon the death of her son, Severus Snape, the female line of the Prince family likely became extinct, as Severus never had any children.
Prince is a general term for a monarch or a member of a monarch's family, and is a hereditary title of some European royalty, likely alluding to the aristocratic status of pure-blood families in the wizarding world. The word is derived from the Latin princeps, meaning "first", which was one of the titles of the Roman Emperor (as princeps civitatis, which means "first citizen"). The Prince is also the title of a famous political treatise by Niccolò Machiavelli; an interesting point considering that the adjective derived from the author's surname, Machiavellian, is defined as "attempting to achieve goals by cunning, scheming and unscrupulous methods", which may allude to the ideal traits of Slytherin house.
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 30 (The White Tomb), Harry speaks of Snape playing up "pure-blood mother, Muggle father" in response to an article Hermione is reading when she says Snape's father was a muggle. However, the article never specifically said Eileen was pure-blood. There is a chance Harry made an assumption when hearing of Tobias. Snape would still be half-blood if his mother was as well.
- ↑ Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
- ↑ Wiktionary Definition: Machiavellian