Muggles' Guide to Harry Potter/Characters/Hepzibah Smith
|Muggles' Guide to Harry Potter - Character|
|Hair color||Unknown (hidden under a ginger wig)|
Hepzibah Smith is a very old witch, still vain and convinced of her own beauty, who shows some valuable artifacts to a young Tom Riddle.
Role in the Books
In the memories of the house-elf Hokey, we see Hepzibah primping herself in preparation of a visit by Tom Riddle. Tom, acting as a buyer for Borgin and Burkes, is there to make an offer on some Goblin-made armour, but Hepzibah, charmed by him, shows him her two fondest possessions, a cup originally owned by Helga Hufflepuff, from whom she claims distant descent, and a locket owned by Salazar Slytherin. Tom recognizes the locket as being the one that his mother had sold to try and support herself. Shortly afterwards, Hepzibah Smith dies, apparently mistakenly poisoned by Hokey.
Relationships with Other Characters
Hokey and Hepzibah here are used primarily as a means to highlight that Tom Riddle can be exceptionally charming when he chooses to be. Despite being present only as a buyer for a Dark magic store, and despite presenting what would apparently be a laughable offer for items Hepzibah is selling, he has managed to lower Hepzibah's defences to the point that she shows him her dearest treasures.
It may be that, having been exposed to two artifacts of the Founders at once, Tom decides here that the remaining four Horcruxes that he plans will be made of artifacts of the four Founders. We suspect that by this time, he knew where the Diadem of Rowena Ravenclaw was hidden, but may not yet have retrieved it or made it into a Horcrux.