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Psychee
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An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

OK, we all know that JKR said that Dumbledore was 150 and McGonagall a sprightly 70, but this just doesn't work for me.

The problem, you see, is that if Dumbledore was born in 1840 or so (as that 150 years old would predict), then he met Grindelwald about the year 1858 and had his picture taken with him.

Then, Grindelwald stole the wand from Gregorovitch when he looked about the same age as he did in that picture. I think that pretty much limits him to having stolen the wand within the next ten years, don't you think? He still looked like a boy... in any case, that brings us up to 1868.

How can we possibly believe that it took him from 1868 to 1940 (72 years) before he attracted enough bad press to start preying on Dumbledore's guilty conscience -- (because we know that Dumbledore waited for 5 years before he dueled him in 1945)?


We have another bit of Math that ties in here... Muriel was listening at the door when her mother was gossiping with Bathilda Bagshot over what transpired at the Ariana Dumbledore funeral...

Did this gossiping happen shortly after the funeral? If it did, then Muriel, who is presently 107 was alive and of an age to be interested in such gossip when Albus was only 18. Let's say she was 5 years younger than he was... that would mean that she would have known him as an older student in school, and thus would have been interested in hearing gossip about him after he graduated.

Mildred was born in 1890 -- that makes her 107 in 1997, the year of Deathly Hallows.

This puts Dumbledore's year of birth at 1885.

In turn, this then means that Grindelwald got the Elder Wand about 1910-1915 -- just in time to start creating a bit of a backstory to the first World War. Then we can give him the years between the first and second World Wars to build up his power base in time to be a public menace in 1940.

Dumbledore meets Tom Riddle in 1938... he would be 53 years old at that time and still sporting auburn hair by my new calculations... a bit old for auburn hair in Muggles, but this is at least better than us believing that his hair still had not turned white at age 98, which is what we have previously been led to believe...

And this would put his age at the time of his death at around 111, instead of 150.

No changes would be required for McGonagall, as she would still be much younger than Dumbledore, just a year or so older than Voldemort...

Discussion???
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amm1
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

I'm not sure what there is to discuss. I believe Rowling has mentioned at least twice that D's age is around 150. Either he is or he isn't. If there is an error somewhere she will either correct it in an interview or she won't. I'm afraid this may be one of her many errors/inconsistencies of which nothing can be done.
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Thomas_T
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

People seem to find the length of time between when Gridenvald gained the wand and when DD faced him to be too long, I don't....
Lets see, I am a megalomaniacal wizard, but I am smart too, smart enough to be on a long discourse with DD... plus I am seeking the Deathly Hallows.. I know I will live for hundreds of years, so yeah, I have time to plot, plan, wait, seek the hallows, and in general prepare to be really horribly evil... so I can fully believe him waiting, I don;'t think JKR has broken math in this case, but rather we aren't thinking that a wizard would be more patient due to the longer life span.


amm1 wrote:
I'm not sure what there is to discuss. I believe Rowling has mentioned at least twice that D's age is around 150. Either he is or he isn't. If there is an error somewhere she will either correct it in an interview or she won't. I'm afraid this may be one of her many errors/inconsistencies of which nothing can be done.


"I aim to misbehave" Malcolm Reynolds Serenity
" To die will be an awfully big adventure." Peter Pan
Proud Cupcake Eater in service to the Dark Countess
"Live with Honor, act with Integrity, No Regrets"
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stacielynn
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Wow!!! I am totally confused now.
StacieLynn

Why does it have to end?

JKR Please write another book series.
ABI
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ABI
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Okay, i don't what to tell you, you've obviously done your research, but i don't think this is a question we can really come to an answer about, do you? Thank you----was it Patty who said that?

It's just one of those things we'll all be wondering on our deathbeds ("I can't die...I...don't...know...how..old..Dumbledore....is...yet........")

But congratulations on managing to riddle all that out!
"There is nothing easier than self-deceit."
"Bombing for peace is like f***ing for virginity"
"There is no such thing as death, only the absence of life."
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Thomas_T
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

DD was 150... there is no "math Problem" Just people who refuse to believe that Gridenvald bided his time for quite awhile before becoming a global issue.



ABI wrote:
Okay, i don't what to tell you, you've obviously done your research, but i don't think this is a question we can really come to an answer about, do you? Thank you----was it Patty who said that?

It's just one of those things we'll all be wondering on our deathbeds ("I can't die...I...don't...know...how..old..Dumbledore....is...yet........")

But congratulations on managing to riddle all that out!


"I aim to misbehave" Malcolm Reynolds Serenity
" To die will be an awfully big adventure." Peter Pan
Proud Cupcake Eater in service to the Dark Countess
"Live with Honor, act with Integrity, No Regrets"
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PattyBNUChick
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

I agree ShadowCougar. If I knew I would live longer than 150 (given the life expectancy of say 150 at least), I know that I would probably take more time with things, but seeing as how I'm already half way there almost, I feel the need to cram things into my life...If I thought I had more time than say 100 years, I would definitely slow down and smell the roses. So its a good point I think.



ShadowCougar wrote:
DD was 150... there is no "math Problem" Just people who refuse to believe that Gridenvald bided his time for quite awhile before becoming a global issue.



ABI wrote:
Okay, i don't what to tell you, you've obviously done your research, but i don't think this is a question we can really come to an answer about, do you? Thank you----was it Patty who said that?

It's just one of those things we'll all be wondering on our deathbeds ("I can't die...I...don't...know...how..old..Dumbledore....is...yet........")

But congratulations on managing to riddle all that out!





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mrsronaldweasley
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

patty..i-im sorry bt i lostyou at 150.
all i know is that dumbledore is a really old man!
o’~aNd I'm So Sad, LikE a GoOd BooK, I caN't PuT tHis Day BacK~’o
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PattyBNUChick
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

I'm just saying that as a human being in this day and age, I really can't expect to live more than 120 at MOST and that's a really rare thing. I'm probably not going to live to 100. And at some point, it all starts going downhill. Geez I'm rambling. IF I could live to 200, there wouldn't be that 'Oh cra*, I've got 2000 things I want to do before I die and only 50 years to do them'. It would be 'Well, I've probably got 150 more years to live, so there's no rush on that wand thingy'. I hope this makes sense. I tend to dig myself deeper by trying to explain usually : )



mrsronaldweasley wrote:
patty..i-im sorry bt i lostyou at 150.
all i know is that dumbledore is a really old man!


ABI
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ABI
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Does it really matter how old he is?
i think he was ready to die, if anyone lead a full life, it was DD, i think we can all agree on that much!
"There is nothing easier than self-deceit."
"Bombing for peace is like f***ing for virginity"
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allenctynimrod
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age



ShadowCougar wrote:
DD was 150... there is no "math Problem" Just people who refuse to believe that Gridenvald bided his time for quite awhile before becoming a global issue.



ABI wrote:
Okay, i don't what to tell you, you've obviously done your research, but i don't think this is a question we can really come to an answer about, do you? Thank you----was it Patty who said that?

It's just one of those things we'll all be wondering on our deathbeds ("I can't die...I...don't...know...how..old..Dumbledore....is...yet........")

But congratulations on managing to riddle all that out!







I agree that Grindelwald may have bided his time for quite a while, yet for him to actually get the Elder Wand and then wait that long after that does seem a little odd to me. He may have been consolidating strength and power at the time but if you have the "undefeatable" wand at a brash young age would you really do that? It's possible but not necessarily plausible from my point of view. I can see him waiting if he didn't have the wand but then again Psychee to be fair we really don't know how quickly wizards age either, so him being younger looking could've been as much as 20-40 years instead of the 10 you used in your example.
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Psychee
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

If JKR didn't say herself that she had a problem with Math I wouldn't even suggest that she made an error in the age she gave...

With the 150 years age, we then also have to accept the idea that Bathilda was gossiping with Muriel's mother about the Ariel Dumbledore funeral more than 30 years after it happened and was doing so in a way that young Muriel felt she had to stay out and just listen behind the door...

It could happen that way, of course, but it seems a lot easier to believe that Bathilda would tell her friends about it when it happened and not wait 30 years considering the fact that she just thought it was a sad thing, not something sensational.
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TruWalker99
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Ok, when does JKR say DD's 150? In one of the books? (If so, then I definitely missed that!!) I always assumed that DD was around 85 or so. In Book 2 CoS, we know it's been 50 years since the chamber was opened. Add 5 (5 years that Riddle was at school until he opened the chamber), and DD was a young teacher when he visited the orphanage, which I put him at around 30. Add them up and you get 85, which is believable enough, but definitely not 150!
Does she ever really talk about the life expectancy of a wizard? Besides Aunt Muriel's 107, I don't remember any of the modern wizards living extra-long lives (and I'm not even considering those killed b/c of Voldy and the DEs). Nicholas Flamel had the Sorc. Stone so he doesn't count, and the Founders lived centuries ago, so they're life span can't be used as comparison either.

Anyway...on a side note, I never thought the timeline of when Voldy was at school was quite right. (If he opened the chamber at 16, and it's been 50 years, then Voldy would be 66 in CoS, and therefore 71 in DH.) I always pictured him as younger, like mid-40s or maybe 50. I know, I know, he was messing with all the horcruxes and trying to become immortal and stuff...but even if I can overlook him being 71, his classmates (the future DeathEaters) are the same age! And just because DD can kick tail at his advanced age (whatever that may be), it doesn't mean they all could.

And I always thought Hagrid (who is 3 years younger than Voldy) should only be about 45 or 50, too.

I don't know, maybe the older I get, the younger I want to make everyone else!
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PattyBNUChick
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Rowling stated in an interview in 2000 that Dumbledore was 150:

"McGonagall is 70, and Dumbledore is 150. Wizards have a longer life expectancy than muggles."
http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/1000-scholastic-chat.htm
Of course, I'm not sure if that means he is 150 when Harry is dropped off at the Dursleys, Harry's first year or what. But it seems to be close.

In another interview in 2005 she said

"George Moore for The Times - How old is Dumbledore?

JK Rowling: I see him as about 150 I have said before that wizards unless they contract some horrible magical disease which does happen... They didn't grow up together, in case you didn't hear that that was a question about whether Flamel and Dumbledore why they were friends if the man was alive 600 years ago. They became friends during Dumbledore's lifetime, they hadn't been friends from boyhood otherwise Dumbledore would be a bit of a rarity.

So how old is he?

JK Rowling: About 150.

http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2005/0705-edinburgh-ITVcubreporters.htm

Voldemort was born around 1926 (events of 1943 referred to as "fifty years ago" in 1992).
Hagrid's birth date is December 6, 1928

So in 1998, around the time DH is set, Voldemort would be around 72, Hagrid would be around 70.

Check out the HP Lexicon to get more details about ages:
http://www.hp-lexicon.org/wizards/voldemort.html



TruWalker99 wrote:
Ok, when does JKR say DD's 150? In one of the books? (If so, then I definitely missed that!!) I always assumed that DD was around 85 or so. In Book 2 CoS, we know it's been 50 years since the chamber was opened. Add 5 (5 years that Riddle was at school until he opened the chamber), and DD was a young teacher when he visited the orphanage, which I put him at around 30. Add them up and you get 85, which is believable enough, but definitely not 150!
Does she ever really talk about the life expectancy of a wizard? Besides Aunt Muriel's 107, I don't remember any of the modern wizards living extra-long lives (and I'm not even considering those killed b/c of Voldy and the DEs). Nicholas Flamel had the Sorc. Stone so he doesn't count, and the Founders lived centuries ago, so they're life span can't be used as comparison either.

Anyway...on a side note, I never thought the timeline of when Voldy was at school was quite right. (If he opened the chamber at 16, and it's been 50 years, then Voldy would be 66 in CoS, and therefore 71 in DH.) I always pictured him as younger, like mid-40s or maybe 50. I know, I know, he was messing with all the horcruxes and trying to become immortal and stuff...but even if I can overlook him being 71, his classmates (the future DeathEaters) are the same age! And just because DD can kick tail at his advanced age (whatever that may be), it doesn't mean they all could.

And I always thought Hagrid (who is 3 years younger than Voldy) should only be about 45 or 50, too.

I don't know, maybe the older I get, the younger I want to make everyone else!


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Psychee
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Ha!!! Rowling just updated her website with a new birthdate for Albus Dumbledore --

Section: Wizard of the Month
Albus Dumbledore
1881 - 1996
Brilliant and often controversial headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Albus Dumbledore is most famous for his 1945 defeat of Grindelwald and his steadfast championing of Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived. Dumbledore's self-proclaimed proudest achievement, however, was featuring on a Famous Wizards Chocolate Frog Card.


I estimated his birth as having occurred in 1885 instead of 1840 like she originally said, and she has just officially put that date at 1881. I'd say I was really close!

So, instead of being over 150 at the time of his death, he was only 115...
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ConnieAnnKirk
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

JKR must have read your post, Psychee! :smileywink:

~ConnieK



Psychee wrote:
Ha!!! Rowling just updated her website with a new birthdate for Albus Dumbledore --

Section: Wizard of the Month
Albus Dumbledore
1881 - 1996
Brilliant and often controversial headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Albus Dumbledore is most famous for his 1945 defeat of Grindelwald and his steadfast championing of Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived. Dumbledore's self-proclaimed proudest achievement, however, was featuring on a Famous Wizards Chocolate Frog Card.


I estimated his birth as having occurred in 1885 instead of 1840 like she originally said, and she has just officially put that date at 1881. I'd say I was really close!

So, instead of being over 150 at the time of his death, he was only 115...


~ConnieAnnKirk




[CAK's books , website.]
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Psychee
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

Gee, I wish she had left me a PM or something, lol... :smileyhappy:

No, honestly, I'm not the only person in the world who found problems with the 150 year old age bit... but I did post my calculations of how old I thought he should be over at Galadriel Waters' board as well...
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Socratea
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age


PattyBNUChick wrote:
I agree ShadowCougar. If I knew I would live longer than 150 (given the life expectancy of say 150 at least), I know that I would probably take more time with things, but seeing as how I'm already half way there almost, I feel the need to cram things into my life...If I thought I had more time than say 100 years, I would definitely slow down and smell the roses. So its a good point I think.



ShadowCougar wrote:
DD was 150... there is no "math Problem" Just people who refuse to believe that Gridenvald bided his time for quite awhile before becoming a global issue.



ABI wrote:
Okay, i don't what to tell you, you've obviously done your research, but i don't think this is a question we can really come to an answer about, do you? Thank you----was it Patty who said that?

It's just one of those things we'll all be wondering on our deathbeds ("I can't die...I...don't...know...how..old..Dumbledore....is...yet........")

But congratulations on managing to riddle all that out!










It's funny you should say that, Patty. I brought the same argument up to a friend of mine as we discussed the book over dinner one night; however, it was in relation to The Trio and Draco starting their families so fast. Harry & Co., after all, are only in their 30s, and they all have at least one kid already--of Hogwarts age at that! I thought it was a bit young, seeing as how their life-spans tend to be longer than Muggles, but she thought it was perfectly normal. I still don't, but hey, Ms. Rowling wrote it that way so, that's that.

My friend also said it was at least perfectly normal for Harry to have a family so young (in wizard years) because that's the one thing HE always wanted in life and never had. That's fine, I can accept that, but what about the others? I doubt Hermione would have children so young (even if she wanted her kids to grow up with Harry's & Lily's) because she's so career-oriented. And what of Draco? I mean, c'mon.

Or maybe, just because you live longer doesn't mean your reproductive years expand as well. So, if that's the case, then it makes COMPLETE sense. LOL. What do you guys think?
§ Slytherin, Noblest of the Hogwarts Four §

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Psychee
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

They do seem to have started families early by our standards, but they also become adults at age 17 and have completed all their formal schooling by 18. By age 23, they have been out of school and well into their career tracks for five years. Maybe that makes a difference?
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hprocks2121
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Re: An Attempt To Fix JKR's Pesky Math Problem... Dumbledore's Real Age

psychee.. you are so good at this stuff! 3000 messages written and counting! its awesome that you can figure this out!!!!!!!!

"Time is making fools of us again."
Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. --Ferris Beuller