By: Jayden Lukas
When I first took on this assignment to interview our new Head of House I had no idea just what to expect. After all, I really did not know this man who now was overseeing House Gryffindor. So, I began the interview wanting to know a bit of his background.
Surprisingly, he is a relative newcomer to Hogwarts having started his employment here in 2020. One may gain the impression that he has been here much longer. Perhaps it is just how comfortable he seems in his surroundings. It may have to do with the fact that Headmaster Oreyn Fox who he described in the interview as his dearest friend influenced him to take the position of History Professor here at Hogwarts. In fact, Professor Digby had particularly glowing praise for his dearest friend Headmaster Fox. When asked how he viewed his performance thus far with the performance of his predecessors he stated and I quote,
“Few have sacrificed as much as he has in recent years, time and again he has proven to be the man which we required, though perhaps not the one we merited. There was once an iron curtain around this castle, one which could not be avoided but only withstood, which we did. And there are few who could have led us to tear it down with so few losses as Headmaster Fox.”
While not all in the school may share his sentiments, it is hoped that Headmaster Fox can live up to such praise, especially with the current crisis that is facing the school.
I asked him when he first came to realise that the study of History would become his life’s work. He seemed to muse as he reminisced back to when he was but a mere lad here at Hogwarts how despite History being one of his favorites it was approached in a “simply dreadful manner” by so many of the Professor’s who came before him.
Before he came to arrive at Hogwarts his focus was on the more active aspects of History where he spent time in discovery and exploration. It was not until this slowed down that he made what would be a rather natural transition to teaching History at our esteemed institution.
His background consisted of many rather varied positions with his earliest days filled with mundane tasks in the assistance of his great uncle Mortimer Storke, who was also a historian and archaeologist with an estate that required upkeep. This position which many might consider menial was worth it for the trust that was acquired from his mentor. When his great uncle retired Oswalt Digby was left with a “keen eye and overwhelming ambition but little to no money.” What is one to do in such a position? Oswalt Digby took up a position of employment at the Ministry of Magic. This saw him shuffling between departments at every opportunity until he managed to head a department of his own. This would allow him the freedom to secure proper financing of his own so that he could eventually leave these departments once his own independent investments demonstrated just how efficient and capable he could be. This gave him what he sees as one of the most indispensable skills a Professor can have and that is the ability to research. There is a skill in knowing when and where to find answers as well as in understanding the answers that are found based on the culture and the time period that is being investigated. This is because everything written down before 1800 is written in a hard to understand code, a tactic used to conceal the information from muggles.
When asked what was one of the most exciting discoveries of his career, he did not hesitate to say that unlocking the secrets of the Kuna as well as the discovery of the Golden Frog. His eyes seemed to light up when he described how events did not go as planned though the events were certainly two of the most exciting for him. When pressed if this was the time when he was possessed and asked to explain what I had only learned very vague facts about, he was not at all forthcoming with an explanation and did not wish to discuss it further. One is left with more questions wondering what the impact from that time may have been on the Gryffindor Head of House.
His honour at becoming the Gryffindor Head of House is palpable as he describes it as his greatest honour. He now leads the house where he came to be a man taking it as his personal challenge to guide the lions to be “resolute, honourable and unconquerable.” It is his vow to never shrink back or tire from this responsibility. Lions never despair. They take it as their duty to fight injustice where they see it. Professor Digby is a man devoted to his duty and to those under his charge. Perhaps the best words of wisdom for those who he is now tasked with leading is that he expects more of each of them. They should take the opportunity to improve themselves and become responsible, self-reliant witches and wizards. With no children of his own, we are his children and the future lies with us.
Time will tell how this Professor handles his new responsibilities and challenges. He may seem quiet but this Professor still has the heart of a lion and is not one to be underestimated.