Wizarding Through the Ages. This page has been updated through Book 7.

Severus Snape

0 1960 Born 9 January: Severus Snape is born to witch Eileen (Prince) Snape and muggle Tobias Snape (HBP30). Young Severus grows up in what appears to have been an unhappy home (OP26) in an industrial part of northern England.
Year calculated from year of James Potter's birth; t he month and day were given on Jo's website (JKR).
c. 1969 Sees Lily Evans and her sister Petunia on the playground, watches Lily perform magic, and tells her that she is a witch. Lily and Snape become friends.
1971 1 September: Enters Hogwarts and is sorted into Slytherin; Lily is sorted into Gryffindor. Snape is 11 years old.
Year calculation based upon Snape birth year.
“Snape knew more curses when he arrived at school than half the kids in the seventh year and he was part of a gang of Slytherins who nearly all turned out to be Death Eaters.” – Sirius Black (GF25).
1970s Lord Voldemort begins his first reign of terror. He is so changed that few recognize him as Tom Marvolo Riddle (CS18).
1973 1 September: Begins third year at Hogwarts. Snape is 13 years old.
1974 1 September: Begins fourth year at Hogwarts. Snape is 14 years old.
1975 1 September: Begins fifth year at Hogwarts. Snape is 15 years old.
1976 June: Snape sits his O.W.L.s, along with Lupin, Sirius, James, and Peter.  Snape’s "worst memory:" That afternoon, James Potter and Sirius Black publicly humiliate Severus; Lily Evans defends Severus until he insults her (OP28). Later, Lily and Severus speak and Lily cuts her ties to him because of his fascination with the dark arts. Snape is devastated.

1 September:
Begins sixth year at Hogwarts. Snape is 16 years old.

1976-1977 school year:
Sirius tricks Snape into following Lupin through the passage beneath the Whomping Willow. James Potter, realizing that Snape would encounter a full-blown and very dangerous werewolf at the end of the passage, stops Snape from going through, thereby saving his life. Snape, much to his disgust, is indebted to James Potter because of this. Dumbledore calls this a "life debt."
1977 9 January: Severus Snape is 17, and has “come of age” in the wizarding world. 

1 September:
Begins seventh year at Hogwarts at the age of 17.
1978 9 January: Snape turns 18 years old.

N.E.W.T.s; Snape finishes his schooling at Hogwarts.

Becomes Death Eater? It is not known to what extent he participated in Voldemort's reign of terror.


9 January: Snape turns 19 years old.

Becomes Death Eater? It is not known to what extent he participated in Voldemort's reign of terror.
1980 Y0 Snape Snooping, copyright Makani.Before July on a "cold, wet night": The Prophecy: Seeks teaching job at Hogwarts. Eavesdrops on Dumbledore's interview of Sybill Trelawney and overhears the first part of the Prophecy. At some point afterward, Snape tells Voldemort what he heard (OP37, HBP25).
This event may have happened as early as the fall of 1979, but a date in the spring seems more likely.

31 July:
Harry Potter is born to James and Lily Potter.

Snape learns that Voldemort has decided that Harry Potter fits the Prophecy and has marked the Potters for death. Snape asks Voldemort to spare Lily.

Snape, still desperate to protect Lily, warns Dumbledore that Voldemort is planning an attack on the family and begs Dumbledore to keep Lily safe in return for his loyalty. The Potters go into hiding at Godric's Hollow.
1981 24 October: Fidelius charm cast on Godric's Hollow to protect the Potter family, but it fails when the Secret keeper, Peter Pettigrew, betrays the Potters to Voldemort.

31 October: Quite possibly midnight, Voldemort murders James and Lily Potter at their hiding place in the village of Godric’s Hollow. When he tries to kill Harry, however, Lily's self-sacrifice causes the the curse to rebound and Voldemort is nearly killed.

Distraught over Lily's death, Snape reaffirms his allegiance to Dumbledore. He promises to protect Harry's life but tells Dumbledore that no one is to know of his unrequited love for Lily.

Late fall or early winter:
Denounced by Karkaroff as a Death Eater in the Wizengamot; Dumbledore vouches for his loyalty.

Month unknown:
Hired to teach at Hogwarts, though Dumbledore refuses Snape's request that he be assigned to teach Defense Against the Dark Arts (OP17).
Snape told Umbridge in 1995 that he had been teaching at Hogwarts for 14 years (OP17).
1982-1991 The years before Harry Potter’s arrival at Hogwarts. Nothing is known about these years, apart from small tidbits of information provided from comments made by certain members of the Weasley family. Snape is the Hogwarts Potions Master and Head of Slytherin House.

June 1985:
Slytherin wins the Quidditch Cup, breaking a long Gryffindor winning streak; Gryffindor does not win again until 1994.


1991 Y11 1 September: Harry Potter begins his first year at Hogwarts; student in Snape's Potions class. 

6 September: First Potions class.

8 November:
Harry realizes that Snape has been bitten by Fluffy.

9 November:
Snape saves Harry from being cursed by Professor Quirrell during a Quidditch match.
1992 Y12 22 February: Snape referees the Hufflepuff/Gryffindor Quidditch match so that Quirrell can't interfere.

25 May:
Harry overhears Quirrell talking to Snape about loyalty.


1992 Y12 1 September: Harry Potter begins his second year at Hogwarts; student in Snape's Potions class. 

17 December at 8pm, Great Hall: Snape duels Lockhart in the ‘dueling club’ (CS11) . 
1993 Y13 8 May: Dumbledore removed as Headmaster and Hagrid taken to Azkaban (CS14).

29 May: Harry defeats Tom Riddle in the Chamber of Secrets; diary Horcrux broken.

1 June:
Exams cancelled. No Quidditch Cup awarded.


1993 Y13

1 September: Harry Potter begins his third year at Hogwarts; student in Snape's Potions class. 

5 November: Snape substitutes for Lupin as Defense Against the Dark Arts professor and assigns an essay on werewolves.

1994 Y14 16 April : Gryffindor (Oliver Wood's team) wins the Quidditch Cup for the first time in years, finally taking it away from Slytherin who won it seven years in a row prior to that. The score is 230 to 20. There are no girls on the Slytherin Quidditch team.

6 June: Follows Lupin to the Shrieking Shack, the hiding place of escapee Sirius Black. Harry immobilizes Snape to protect Sirius. We find out a little bit about why Snape loathes James Potter, Remus Lupin and Sirius Black (and the truth about Peter Pettigrew/Wormtail is discovered).
1994 Y14 1 September: Harry Potter begins his fourth year at Hogwarts; student in Snape's Potions class. 

25 December: Yule Ball 8pm until midnight. Snape is blasting rose bushes apart and handing out detentions.
1995 Y15 24 June: Cedric is killed, Voldemort reborn. Snape is "summoned" via his Dark Mark, but (along with Karkaroff) does not join the other Death Eaters in the graveyard.

Late June: Reveals his Dark Mark to Cornelius Fudge. The news of Voldemort's re-birth forces Snape to take on a mysterious task for the Order of the Phoenix. We find out that Snape has been a spy for Dumbledore.
1995 Y15 5 August: Harry learns that Snape is a member of the Order of the Phoenix when Snape arrives at 12 Grimmauld Place to give a report. Harry sees a building plan.

1 September:
Harry Potter begins his fifth year at Hogwarts; student in Snape's Potions class. 

2 September:
First day of classes; "Draught of Peace" taught in Potions.

8 September:
Umbridge appointed "High Inquisitor."

7 October:
Umbridge inspects Snape's Potions class.
1996 Y16 11 January: Snape tells Harry that Dumbledore has told him to teach Harry Occlumency. We find out that Snape is a “superb Occlumens.”

Also on this day, ten Death Eaters escape from Azkaban.

13 January:
Snape begins teaching Harry Occlumency every Monday and Wednesday. During these lessons, Snape admits to Harry that he is spying on the Death Eaters for the Order of the Phoenix.

Early April:
Harry sees Snape’s apparently “worst memory” in the pensieve; disastrous end to the Occlumency lessons.

Early June:
Snape is put on Probation by Dolores Umbridge for refusing to brew more Veritaserum. Snape saves Harry’s (and many other lives) by alerting Dumbledore when he found out that Harry had gone to the Department of Mysteries; Snape does not participate in the battle.

The Wizarding World finds out that Lord Voldemort is really is back. 
1996 Y16 Late June or early July: At some point in late June or early July Snape was at Hogwarts where he "might have" saved Dumbledore's life when the Headmaster returned "desperately injured" after breaking the ring Horcrux (HBP23).

Living in a tenement house on Spinner's End with Peter Pettigrew. Order of the Phoenix member Emmaline Vance "nastily" murdered by Death Eaters; Severus Snape later claims to Bellatrix that he was the one who betrayed her (HBP5). Makes an Unbreakable Vow with Narcissa Malfoy:
  • to watch over Draco "as he attempts to fulfill the Dark Lord's wishes"
  • to "protect Draco from harm"
  • to "carry out the deed that the Dark Lord has ordered Draco to perform" if it seems that Draco will fail
September: Snape is Defense Against the Dark Arts professor; Horace Slughorn comes out of retirement to teach Potions.
Harry Potter begins his sixth year at Hogwarts; student in Slughorn's Potions class and Snape's D.A.D.A. class. 

2 September: First D.A.D.A. class: Snape tries to jinx Harry, Harry retaliates and gets detention.

14 September:
Harry's first detention with Snape (flobberworms).

20 December:
Slughorn's Christmas party, where Draco is caught wandering outside. Later Harry overhears Snape trying to get Draco to let him help.

24 December: Harry reports to Arthur and Lupin about his suspicions of Draco and Snape.
1997 Y17 1 March: Hagrid lets slip to Harry that Dumbledore argued with Snape.

7 May:
Snape discovers that Harry has used Sectumsempra on Draco and gives Harry detention for the rest of the school year.

11 May:
Harry has detention with Snape who makes him re-copy old detention files pertaining to James' and Sirius' misdeeds while at school.

Early June: Harry learns from Trelawney that Snape was the one that overheard her make the Prophecy.

Snape kills Professor Dumbledore with the Avada Kedavra curse when Draco fails to do so (HBP26). Admits to being the 'Half-Blood Prince' and escapes Hogwarts.

Hermione tells Harry that Eileen Prince was Snape's mother.
1997 Y17 July: Snape attends a Death Eater meeting at the Malfoy mansion in Wiltshire where he tells everyone that the Order plans to move Harry from Privet Drive before his birthday and witnesses the murder of fellow Hogwarts professor Charity Burbage.

August: Snape is made the Headmaster of Hogwarts by a Ministry controlled by Death Eaters.

School year:
Snape walks a thin line between maintaining his cover as a Death Eater and protecting the students at Hogwarts from the Carrows who have been installed as the Muggle Studies and Defense Against the Dark Arts professors.

December 26:
Dumbledore's portait tells Snape to hide Gryffindor's sword in the Forest of Dean where Harry can find it (DH33). Snape leads Harry to the sword with his Patronus, a silver doe.
1998 Y18 May: Harry arrives at Hogwarts to search for the diadem Horcrux. Minerva McGonagall and Filius Flitwick confront Snape and force him to flee the building.

Voldemort kills Snape in a mistaken attempt to gain control over the Elder Wand. This is witnessed by Harry who goes to Snape and is able to collect his leaking memories before he dies. Once viewed in a Pensieve, Harry realizes that Snape had loved his mother Lily and had spent the last eight years trying to protect him.

Related pages:


Primary editor: Lisa Waite Bunker. Previous editor Cindy Eric.
Original artwork of Snape Snooping ©2006 Makani. Used with permission.
Original page date 10 March, 2001; Last page update 6 October, 2007.