In Harry Potter and also the Half-Blood Prince chapter 28, Harry finds a note informing that someone has actually obtained the Dark Lord"s locket Horcrux from the cave before Professor Dumbledore and also Harry got tright here. The note has no full name, only the initials “R.A.B.”. In Deathly Hallows chapter 10, we discover out that this perkid who stole the locket was Regulus Arcturus Black, Sirius"s younger brvarious other. We had actually heard Sirius cite him shortly in Order of the Phoenix chapter 6, though we don"t learn his middle name till Hallows.

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There were 2 years between the publication of Prince and Hallows during which the identification of the locket thief might have actually been unparticular. Did the Harry Potter fans deduce R.A.B."s identity? Do we understand this from statements that were certainly made prior to the publication of Hallows? Were tbelow any kind of exciting alternative theories? Or did the fans easily work out into a consensus that the locket thief was Regulus?

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With a fanbase as big as Harry Potter"s is, there"s never a complete consensus on anything, of course - but pretty a lot from the beginning "RAB = Regulus Black" was the frontrunner concept, through just little pockets of fans speculating anypoint else.

Take a look, for example, at this Mugglenet Blog post publiburned just 4 days after the release of the HBP, which pretty prescient both in the general and particular details of RAB"s identity:

Now that I have actually lhelp out the criteria I believe our mysterious R. A. B. hregarding follow, I will certainly state who I believe the perkid is: Regulus Black, Sirius’ younger brother...

I think Regulus probably had even more courage than Sirius offered him credit for. I have a feeling that Regulus uncovered himself in a instance comparable to what Draco Malfoy gained himself into in HBP. Regulus probably did obtain scared, yet unfavor Draco, he refprovided to do what Voldemort was asking him to execute and also actually tried to aid the future vanquisher ruin Voldemort. It takes most guts to go against Voldemort, and I have a feeling Regulus knew he might never hide from Voldemort, and if he was going to die, he did not want to carry out it cowardly however was going to attempt to execute something that would certainly be devastating to Voldemort.

I think it is most likely that Harry will certainly come to number out who the mysterious R. A. B. is through either Sirius’ house or Kreacher; both of which he has actually conveniently inherited. I think that Harry will certainly again discover assist in a person that he was not expecting.

Or this 2006 Beyond Hogwarts short article, which guesses not just at RAB"s identity however almost eexceptionally detail of exactly how the locket plot would certainly inevitably go down:

So, where is the real locket now? Regulus" note states he inhas a tendency to ruin it as quickly as he can, however we don"t understand for sure that he did.

If it"s all over, you"d suspect it"s someplace in Grimauld Place, where we assume Regulus lived with his parents. In Harry Potter and also the Order of the Phoenix, as soon as they are cleaning out the parlor in Grimauld Place, a locket is stated, however only briefly... it"s an excellent chance the locket Harry experienced in the cabinet in Grimauld Place was the locket. But, where is it now?

Some fans think Kreacher has actually it.

Even the world that said against it did so mainly on the grounds that "it"s also obvious" or "it"ll be unsatisfying" quite than having actually alternative theories to propose.

Take, for instance, this August 2005 post from a "RAB is not Regulus Black" supporter:

The principle that Regulus Babsence is RAB is by much the most famous conclusion and also tright here appears to be several things that pop up confirming the concept.

Hands up, I don’t have actually ANY kind of dispute versus Regulus Babsence being RAB, apart from my gut feeling that it’s so noticeable that it can’t be true.

Or this early 2006 forum post:

I never thought Regulus Babsence was RAB. That would be would be as well a lot in your face approach, unRowlinglike. She puts somepoint in your challenge at first but constantly debunks it afterwards

(And shoutout to this perboy, that while saying versus "RAB = Regulus Black" managed to randomly guess a pretty big plot allude involving Kreacher):

No way is it Regalus. It just seems so... stupid and also unlikley. Just bereason his initials fit... But i think KReacher was tbelow and also was forced to drink the potion, and that"s why he is a small mad. It was as well much for a House-elf to take.

A few areas opened up themselves as much as fun different theories (I think, "RAB is Dumbledore, time traveling to the future" is my favorite) yet none obtained a lot traction among the larger fanbase.

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In the weeks and days counting dvery own to DH"s release, the theory went even even more mainstream, showing up on multiple non-HP media sites. It"s safe to say that by DH"s release, the only civilization not expecting this twist were the ones who either didn"t follow speculation at all or had a niche alternate concept.