Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Neville's best subject is Herbology and his worst is Potions. His greatest fear is of the Potions Master, Professor Severus Snape. He owns a toad named Trevor, who was a gift from his great uncle Algie upon his acceptance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
Neville's parents are Alice and Frank Longbottom. They were both Aurors and prominent members of the Order of the Phoenix during the time of Lord Voldemort's original reign. They were driven mad by Bellatrix Lestrange, one of Voldemort's followers, who tortured them with the Cruciatus Curse. They are now in a closed ward of St Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries. Neville's grandmother raised him from a young age.
The loss of his parents to madness has affected Neville greatly. It could be that much of Neville's uncertainty stems from events concerning his parents' madness. While Harry Potter learned of the fate of Neville's parents in the course of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Neville was unaware of this. During the course of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry and his friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger saw Neville visiting his parents at St. Mungo's. These three have kept Neville's secret, and Neville has only spoken of that meeting on one occasion.
Neville's lack of self-confidence could also stem from his weakness as a wizard-in-training; despite being pure-blooded, Neville shows an ineptitude with magic that often gets him into trouble (though he shows great strength and potential, being able to whiz the Charms teacher, Professor Flitwick, around the classroom, he lacks focus). His use of his father's wand may also be a factor. Nonetheless, he has stood up both to his friends (notably in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, where his bravery earned Gryffindor the House Cup) and his enemies (see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix for details). Indeed, during the course of the fifth book, Neville's magical abilities improve dramatically, as shown in the renegade Defence Against the Dark Arts lessons taught by Harry. This may stem from his desire to stop Lord Voldemort, due to the actions of the evil wizard's minions.
Neville is also known for his forgetfulness; he used a Remembrall in the early books of the series to help him recall things, but couldn't remember what it was telling him that he had forgotten.
Despite a portrayal that could be described as "one-sided" in the first four books, Neville has come into his own, particularly in the fifth book. Indeed, he plays a key role (albeit inadvertently) in keeping Lord Voldemort from knowing the prophecy made about Voldemort and Harry.
An interesting point which Dumbledore brings up in the denouement of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is that both Harry and Neville were born during the same month, and the aforementioned prophecy could possibly have applied to either of them. Whether this is pertinent to the remainder of the story is yet to be determined.
Overanalyzing the Text: Neville - Various essays on Neville
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