A Gramarye of Folk Magic

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Title: A Gramarye of Folk Magic
Author(s): Delphi
Date(s): May 2014
Length: 5800 words
Genre: romance
Fandom: Harry Potter
External Links: HP Beholder AO3

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A Gramarye of Folk Magic is a Harry Potter story by Delphi (originally under the alias "Broodedhelm"), written in 2014 for the final HP Beholder exchange, which Delphi moderated. Told from the point of view of Albus Dumbledore's brother Aberforth, it concentrates on his developing relationship with the young Severus Snape, at the time of the first war against Voldemort and its aftermath. Snape/Aberforth is a rare cross-generational slash pairing that Delphi has written previously (e.g. Goat Song). The story is structured around the seasons, with the events of the war happening offstage. It is rated NC-17. The author's summary is:

Time moves with the seasons in Hogsmeade, and season by season the Snape boy returns to Aberforth's inn.

Delphi considers it her best story of 2014:

In terms of being happy with getting what was in my head down on the page, my pick is A Gramarye of Folk Magic (Aberforth Dumbledore/Severus Snape, Harry Potter). It was written in a hurry, but I think it would have turned out much the same if I'd dithered over it longer.[1]


The story was among the most popular of the exchange that year and was widely recommended. It has appeared twice on the HP recommending community, Crack Broom. It is praised for its vivid details, measured pacing, lyrical style, literary quality, and the complex, subtle characterisations of the two men.


One of the most beautiful things I've read recently: ... A story as slow-moving and reticent as Aberforth himself, with breathtaking attention to details. Go, read. You deserve something this nice. (Magnetic Pole)[2]
I've seen this one recced all over LJ and with good reason. Structured around the four seasons, this lyrical, vivid story is offers another expert depiction of adolescent Snape -- "the boy." The style is interesting -- repetitive and discursive, it takes on a sort of incantatory power. (Kelly Chambliss)[3]
Probably my favorite of the bunch. The writing really is exquisite (and I am generally not even turned on by words :P) and both their characterizations are spot on, IMO. (Torino10154)[4]
This is beautiful. Aberforth keeps on doing his own thing while the plot thickens and Albus manipulates in the background, visible only to us through Snape as he appears to Aberforth. Definitely a must read from the fest. (Fluffyllama)[5]
First of all, the writing in this fic is incredibly beautiful -- it's thoughtful, vivid, and sharp in a way that wouldn't be out of place in a literary novel. Secondly, the author writes Aberforth in a complex and subtle way that goes well the complexity of Snape's character. Finally, it is so fascinating to see the young, post-war Snape from the point of view of an older adult -- Snape is repentant but acerbic, but also seems so very young. This is a lovely, subtle story that will make your heart ache. (youcantseeus on Crack Broom)[6]
The tone and the atmosphere of this build beautifully through the writing. It’s a great insight into two taciturn characters who don't discuss their emotions. It is clear that affection grows between them, but it’s neither stated nor acknowledged, and they continue to have sex as though it were uninvested with any feelings.
I also loved all the farming details and knowledge of the countryside and nature. They really help to build the picture of Aberforth's character and lifestyle. You get a real feel for Hogsmeade as a rural village, as well as feeling the fear and mistrust around at the end of the first Voldemort war. (What Would Mrs Weasley Do on Crack Broom)[7]
Delicate & insightful joint character study, picked out in vivid details as it slowly unwinds through the seasons. Aberforth's unshowy style of magic is a treat (Espresso Addict[8])


  1. "delphi: 2014 Writing Year in Review". Retrieved 29 April 2015. 
  2. "magnetic-pole: Insta!rec". Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  3. "kelly-chambliss: Beholder Recs". Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  4. "torino10154: A few recs". Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  5. "fluffyllama: Beholder recs (HP fics)". Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  6. "Crack Broom: Fic: Snape/Aberforth - "A Gramarye of Folk Magic" by broodedhelm". Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  7. "Crack Broom: Fic rec. Featured Pair: Aberforth/Severus. "A Gramarye of Folk Magic" by atdelphi". Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  8. "Espresso Recommendations: Harry Potter". Retrieved 28 April 2015.