Chamber of Secrets

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This article is about the Chamber of Secrets (a secret room hidden at Hogwarts). Were you looking for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets?

The Chamber of Secrets was built by Salazar Slytherin at the time of the founding of Hogwarts. The other three founders didn't know its location, and for many centuries its very existence was considered to be a rumour (CS9).

The Chamber is located miles under the earth, probably under the lake at Hogwarts. It is a long, dimly lit room. The high ceiling is supported by stone pillars entwined with enormous serpents. A large statue of Salazar Slytherin stands at the end of the Chamber. Sytherin's monster, the Basilisk, is contained inside the statue and can only be set free by a Parselmouth.

To reach the Chamber of Secrets, a parselmouth has to open a secret passage in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom. A long slide leads to a tunnel deep under the school. At the end of the tunnel, there is a wall engraved with snakes with emeralds for eyes that will open to Parseltongue commands.

Tom Marvolo Riddle, a descendant of Slytherin's, was able to gain entrance due to his Parseltongue abilities in his fifth year (CS17). He then liberated the Basilisk found therein; a girl named Myrtle ended up dying for having looked Slytherin's Basilisk in the eyes (CS15).

The Chamber was reopened in Harry's second year (CS8). First-year Ginny Weasley, having accidentally acquired tom Riddle's diary, found that it could reply to what she wrote. There was an echo of Riddle's seventeen-year-old persona hidden in those pages; Ginny grew to trust him, not knowing that the brilliant student had grown to become Lord Voldemort (CS17).

Harry fighting the Basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets, fanart by Ayne.

Riddle used Ginny to set the Basilisk free to roam around the school, using the pipelines to move undetected (CS15). Several students were sent to the hospital wing, petrified, including Colin Creevey (CS10) and Hermione Granger (CS14). Ginny gradually became weaker, and he was able to manipulate her into entering the Chamber herself.

Harry saved her. He, too, was a Parseltongue, and easily gained entrance to the Chamber. Once inside, however, he was unable to break Riddle's control over the Basilisk. At the last minute, Fawkes saved him from being poisoned, and he used one of the snake's fangs to destroy the diary (CS17).

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