The Harry Potter universe may only cover a small collection of books, but the lore within the universe has spanned centuries. Furthermore, there’s always more to uncover as fans see small details that change the perspective of certain characters forever. These small details are found more commonly with antagonistic characters as they often carry the most secrets.
Perhaps one of the least explored aspects of the Wizarding World was tied to the founding members of Hogwarts. While their intentions were widely known, readers never thoroughly knew who they were as individuals. That could be said mostly for Salazar Slytherin, who, for the most part, was best known for his beliefs in Pure-Blood superiority to the point of making the Chamber of Secrets. But one theory on Reddit believes that his intentions weren’t just to set up a massacre of Muggle-borns within Hogwarts.
The Chamber of Secrets Was Made To Defend Hogwarts
While Slytherin’s beliefs were never in question, even history has shown that he likely made the Chamber of Secrets so that, if he could not, someone else would open it to release the Basilisk and kill all the Muggle-born Witches and Wizards. But there may be more to his intentions than previously thought. It could be that the chamber wasn’t made as a weapon against Hogwarts but as a tool to protect it from Muggles that wished to do Hogwarts harm.
It’s hard to say how dangerous the world was at the time of the founders, but it could be assumed that Muggles were potentially more privy to magic than before. As a result, those that attended the school likely had to risk being taken or killed by Muggles trying to uncover Hogwarts’ secrets. Therefore, the Chamber of Secrets was created, and the Basilisk within was trained to kill any Muggle threats that crossed it. However, it could equally be plausible that Slytherin still had a master plan to unleash the snake on the school with its defenses designed to give the snake a taste for Muggles.
History Changed the Chamber of Secrets’ Purpose for the Worst
History hasn’t been kind to Slytherin house, especially given the reputation of its founder. But having housed villains like Bellatrix Lestrange, the Malfoys and even Lord Voldemort, it makes sense that many see the house as evil. There’s also the reality that history is only as true as those that retell it. Therefore, it’s possible that the main purpose of the Chamber of Secrets was to protect the school. But, of course, as Slytherin’s reputation grew and was embellished, so was the purpose of his chamber, now a place of myth that houses untold horrors.
History can be as cruel as it can be informative, and as Severus Snape and Leta Lestrange have shown, the Slytherin house isn’t a place of evil wizards. Each graduate’s fate is decided based on their choices and nothing more. Therefore, while Salazar Slytherin may not have been a good Wizard to Muggles, it’s possible his Chamber wasn’t initially a part of a larger revenge plot. Having it be a defense that got out of hand works well, as it also shows how twisted and obsessed Voldemort was to achieve his goals. Though it’s only a theory, it’s one that easily enhances the larger story.