Warner Bros.

J.K. Rowling Just Revealed an Intriguing New Detail About Snape's Abilities

Dec 21, 2016

Since the conclusion of the Harry Potter series in 2007, J.K. Rowling has revealed a plethora of new details about both the wizarding world and the characters who inhabit it, including the fact that Dumbledore was gay and that Hagrid couldn't produce a Patronus. Now, the author has taken to Twitter to further elaborate on a particular talent of Severus Snape's — his Legilimency.

Snape is first revealed to be a skilled Legilimens — a witch or wizard with the ability to read another person's mind — when Dumbledore arranges for Harry to practice Occlumency — the art of shielding one's mind from invasion — with the potions professor in Order of the Phoenix. However, Snape has to actively work at reading minds while Queenie — a Legilimens introduced in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them — seems to be able to do it without trying.

Responding to a fan who was unclear about the difference between the two, Rowling noted that it all comes down to natural ability. "Snape had to train a slight natural ability," she tweeted Wednesday morning. "Queenie was born with a great talent, though she's not infallible."

All products and services featured are based solely on editorial selection. TIME may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website.