Who wouldn’t be Googling Harry Potter wand information?
If you’re a harry potter fan like me, then you’ve stumbled upon what I think is some great research around the wands from the Harry Potter movies.
I must admit, I am a little obsessed with the wands from harry potter, I just think they are so wonderful and add a special element to the tale that should be explored further. I do have a favourite wand, wonder if you can guess whose it may be?
I am curious to know your favourite wand also? Please do comment and let me know!
Can you imagine heading to Ollivanders to pick up your first wand! How COOL would that be!
But remember “The wand chooses the wizard Mr Potter’
Let’s get started! Such an exciting Harry Potter topic, I can’t contain my excitement!
Wandlore Origins – Where Did It All Begin?
I guess the best place to start when looking at the wands of Harry Potter is to start at the very beginning and discover what wandlore actually is and how the use of the amazing magic weapons started
Origins may go back a couple of thousand years so this alone tells us that wands are a very big deal in the world of Harry Potter and you may have even noticed on the sign of the infamous wand shop in Diagon Alley, ‘Olyvanders’ that states they have been making quality wands since 382 B.C!
The making itself of wands is something which requires a wizard to become an apprentice to a wizard that has considerable experience making wands as well as take up study around wandlore. Only then are they able to go about the practice individually.
The Complicated Nature of Wandlore
In the first move, Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone we learn from Mr Ollivander himself the complicated and complex nature that is wandlore. It’s true that even the most skilled wizard more often than not, will have not mastered every complexity fully.
Mr Ollivander even admitting that Priori Incantatem is still something that baffles him to this day. Priori Incantatem, of course, being the reaction of two wands that use cores from the same source.
This reaction causes the wands to not function correctly against each other, does this sound familiar?
We know that the wand chooses the wizard, but again this is something that is shrouded in mystery as the choice the wand makes is in no way random or sporadic, I myself often wonder what are the ‘criteria’ of the wands selections? Would love to know your thoughts here?
Wand Cores At Ollivander’s Wands
Another interesting point to note here is that Garrick Ollivander uses only three types of material for what is known as the wands ‘core’.
These three consist of
The reason for the Unicorn hair used as a core as it is believed to produce the most consistent form of magic. And is least likely to produce magic fluctuations or blockages. You could say that wands of unicorn hair and the most reliable of wands. If I were a wizard, I’d be hoping to be presented with one of these.
I’d want the most reliable wand as can you imagine getting a blockage when trying to defend yourself!
The Dragon Heartstring is a very adaptable core and it tends to ‘learn’ very quickly indeed. I guess if you’re a naturally fast learning type of wizard then you would do well to be coupled with a wand of the dragon heartstring. Also, not surprising that these cores are very powerful in that they are able to produce some incredible magic.
You can understand why many wizards want to be paired with the dragon heartstring, believe they can instantly get a ‘power’ headstart over their peers!
If you’re a witch or wizard looking to perform a diverse and broad spectrum of magic, then a wand with a Phoenix feather could be on your wishlist as the Phoenix feather is able to help a wand deliver the best range of magical spells.
Although these cores are rare and take longer than the first two cores to open their true potential, you could be a wizard of real legend capable of producing some very intriguing and unique magic.
The issue with the Pheonix core is that their amazing intuition, can result in wands taking wandlore into their own hands and casting spells when not required to, so this is the main reason why many witches and wizards are actually averse to their use. Very interesting indeed!
The Other Elements To A Wand
Although the core is very important to a wand’s output as we have looked at, there are also other variables to a wand that must be taken into consideration when looking at the overall picture of wand performance. Let’s have a look at these in a little further detail.
Wand Length – Yes, They Are Different!
Wand length isn’t random as some say that wand length is equally important to a wand’s core! There is in many cases a direct relationship between a wizard’s height and their respective wand’s size. For instance, look at the size of Hagrid who is actually classified as half-giant. He had a wand which measured to an incredible sixteen inches in length! WOW!
It mas made of oak but unfortunately was snapped when poor old Rubeus was accused of opening the Chamber of Secrets! He doesn’t have much luck, does he?
Or take, for example, the evil Dolores Umbridge, her wand was once thought to be the shortest out there and Umbridge herself being very short in appearance is the reason for her tiny wand. Apparently, her wand was lost in the Forbidden Forrest before being stepped on and destroyed by a centaur’s hoof!
There are some properties to a wand’s size that are also prevalent to the owner’s personality, again if we look at Hagrid, wands that are above average length tend to seek those with big personalities and produce big dramatic spells.
Hagrid being the happy, extroverted, and excitable chap he is is obviously very well matched to the wand of greater physical length!
So, a wand’s length is more than just fitting the owning witch or wizards’ hands comfortably and you can actually tell a lot about a wizard from the first glance at their wand! Fascinating!
Not such an important element to the wand is its flexibility in comparison to that of its length and core but it has been said that the more ‘brittle’ a wand is, the less likely a wizard is to learn, change and adapt to the characteristics of the wand.
The opposite has been said about wands that are ‘nicely supple’ such as Harry’s. We all know that Harry is a very loyal person and perhaps that is reflected in his wand that has some give.
Curious…as Mr Ollivander would say!
I’d like to talk here about wands belong to characters in the Harry Potter saga as there are some great facts to be learned so stay tuned!
Harry Potter Wand Information – An Unusual Combination
Seems only fitting to start with our Hero Harry’s wand. Harry’s wand is somewhat unusual in the for one, it uses a combination of the Phoenix Feather and carved from holly which is noticeably rare.
Interesting to note here is that the core feather came from Dumbledore’s bird friend, Fawkes. The Phoenix represents the rebirth of life, which if look at Harry surviving the Avada Kedavra (killing curse) from Voldemort’s attack you could say it’s very relevant that Harry’s wand’s core uses the Phoenix feather!
As we learn in the first movie, Fawkes has only given one of feather for use in a wand and that wand’s owner, yep, the Dark Lord himself owns that wand and this is one of the reasons why Voldemort finds it so hard to attack Harry, due to the Prior Incantatem effect we spoke briefly about at the top of the article!
Harry’s wand is an 11 inch and made from Holly. I love the fact the wands made from holly are said to seek wizards that are considered to be destined for dangerous adventures.
We’ve already mentioned the strange combination of the Phoenix feather and holly wands and even the saga’s author J.K Rowling has stated that if this combination is successfully paired to a wizard, then nothing should stand in that wizard’s way! WOW!
Voldemort’s Wand Information – A Wand With Attitude!
We have already learned that ‘the brother’ to the dark lord’s wand is Harry’s wand which is a very spooky fact in itself but I’d like to have a look at Voldemort’s wand a little more to discover any other secrets it may hold.
It was in 1938 that the then, Tom Riddle made the trip to Diagon Alley to purchase his wand.
The wand was thirteen and one a half inches long constructed of yew, with that well-known core the Phoenix feather.
The feather had significance for Harry as we have already discussed, but it also has much association with Voldemort as rebirthing is his ultimate obsession in that Voldemort was desperate for immortality and I suspect this is why his wand was right for him!
Yew is a crucial material for Voldemort’s wand as it was used by some great legends of Great Britain and used frequently by the Druids. It is very poisonous and deadly to cattle.
Personally, I think Voldemort’s wand looks incredibly evil and it is probably my favourite of all wands!
I do often wonder if Voldemort’s wand was somehow a receptacle of power for some of the horrendous acts he used his wand for?
Let’s not forget just how many have suffered the fatal effects of Avada Kedavra at the hands of the dark lord! Voldemort’s wand certainly has some stories to tell!
Do you have a favourite wand? Who’s is it? Please make sure to leave a comment as I do like hearing about the reader’s thoughts and I’ll do my best to get back to you as soon as I can.
Draco Malfoy’s Wand
Draco we can assume purchased his wand as most do, prior to starting his education at Hogwarts. We know it was bought from Ollivander’s naturally and that it is a ten-inch wand made from Hawthorn and has a unicorn hair core.
Being ‘reasonably springy’ one can also assume based on our ‘flexibility’ research that it’s quite suited to Malfoy’s magic and his personality traits.
It was in 1997 when Draco (at the command of Voldemort) when Draco famously disarmed the great Albus Dumbledore of his wand and had in fact made attempts on Ablus’s life prior to this. Draco was actually in fear of his family’s life if he didn’t obey the wishes of Voldemort!
What Draco hadn’t realised that upon his hideous act of releasing Dumbledore of his wand, that, therefore, made him the owner of Dumbledor’s wand, the Elder wand, the wand of ALL wands!
When it came down to the murder of Dumbledore, we find that Draco is human after all as he couldn’t bring himself to do it. It was Severus Snape who stepped in to accomplish the dark lord’s command, but the interesting point to note here is that Dumbledore had made Severus promise to kill him. Why? It was the only way that they would be able to convince Voldemort of Sverus’s loyalty and it was all part of their secret plan to overthrow Voldemort.
I really enjoyed this twist in the plot! Did you? Please let me know your thoughts around Dumbledore’s death as I’d really love to hear them!
I must say that Hermione’s wand is visually stunning! Maybe this is a reflection of her beautiful intelligence I don’t know? But Hermione’s wand is a ten and three-quarter inch made from vine wood. Perhaps it is the vine that makes it so easy on the eye!
You guessed it, Hermione, like the vast majority of witches and wizards purchased hers from Ollivander’s and it was believed that she made the trip to Diagon Alley shortly before her first term at Hogwarts school for witchcraft and wizardry.
Herminie was able to produce some quite dramatic and powerful magic very early on with the use of her wand, this I believe is not only because Hermione is very dedicated to her education but also due to her wands core.
The Dragonheart String core as we have already looked at is a very quick learning core for any wand so it’s no doubt that this, together with Herminie’s passion for magic, is what has enabled the young Gryffindor to cast spells with such elegance and accuracy!
Poor old Ron, he doesn’t seem to have the best luck with his wands or his spells!
His first wand, who I am told belonged to Charlie Weasley prior, was broken by that famous tree, the WhompingWillow when himself and Harry had used the flying car to get to Hogwarts!
It was a 12-inch wand made of ash and the core was a Unicorn hair which actually protruded from the end of the wand!
Ron decided he’d take action and fix his wand by using Sellotape! But It was damaged to beyond repair and this is what caused the wand to produce some ‘unwanted’ magic outcomes!
A perfect example of this is when Ron came to Hermie’s defence after Malfoy called her ‘filthy little mud-blood’. Ron, without thinking, turned to Malfoy and with passion wanted to teach Malfoy a lesson and tried to curse Malfoy, but it backfired onto himself causing Ron to end up vomiting slugs!! Gross!
Why didn’t he just ask his parents for a new one? Well, he didn’t want to get another howler and face further embarrassment at school! Can’t say I blame him!
Lucious Malfoy’s Wand
I absolutely LOVE Lucius’ wand, just for the fact that the wand can be hidden inside Lucius’ snake-headed walking stick! So COOL!
This wand has a Dragon Heartstring core and made from Elm and I believe the wand is a family heirloom so no doubt Draco will end up with it one day.
For me, the most interesting point to note is that after Lucius’ was free from Azkaban and was reunited with this wand, Voldemort got his hands on it. The reason being is that Voldemort needed an alternative wand to get around the problem of sharing the same Phoenix’s feather to Harry’s wand as Voldemort now knew he wouldn’t be able to kill Harry unless a different wand was used, due to the Priori Incantatem effect!
Voldemort having no other volunteers to give up their wands, chose Lucius, before snapping off the snakehead in an act of ‘I’m the boss’ after Lucius’ reluctance in initially giving up his wand! He’s so evil!
The Elder Wand
Now it’s time to look at the ‘Elder Wand’. What a story we have here!
The elder wand, together with the resurrection stone and cloak of invisibility make up the deathly hallows. What makes this addition to the Harry Potter universe particularly spooky is that it’s believed that ‘death himself’ was the creator of the wand, which was the first of these incredibly powerful artefacts!
These objects relate to the ‘Story of the three brothers’ which we’ll look at in a future article as I want to highlight here the elder wand is in fact, the most powerful wand known to ever have existed. The magic capable with the elder wand is said to be legendary, can you imagine the fun to be had with this bad boy!
Its magical effects are rumoured to be even more advanced than that of even the most skilled of witches and wizards, so it’s no wonder why this was another of Voldemort’s obsessions.
As for its core, it had a tail hair of a Thestral, which was not even visible by witches or wizards that are not capable of accepting death, that is just how unique this wand is. The wand is fifteen inches in length and crafted from elder wood.
There is a huge history to the wand but I would like to pick up at the point where Dumbledore after defeating Grindelwald, became the wand’s master. Their duel would go down in history as one of the greatest ever!
Grindelwald was incarcerated in his own prison where he stayed for many years. Along came Voldemort in the quest for the Elder wand and when Grindelwald failed to disclose it’s location, you guess it, Voldemort murdered Grindelwald!
I feel that with the Elder wand in Dumbledor’s possession, it was probably in the safest hands possible and unlike the vast majority of previous owners, he used the power of the wand for good and some of the feats he produced with the elder wand were incredible!
Dumbledore even stated that he intended to use the wand to protect others from it and I also LOVE the fact the Ablus, when the Ministry tried to personally escort him to Azkaban, he stunned the evil Dolores Umbridge among others while escaping!
Take THAT Umbridge!
As we explored early in the section about Draco’s wand, Draco unintentionally became the owner of the elder wand when he disarmed Dumbledore and it wasn’t until Harry forcefully removed the wand from Draco, that Harry became the official owner of the elder wand and after Voldemort’s death (Horray!) Harry in true Harry style used it to repair his own wand as he actually preferred his original wand!
I hope this portion of the article has you thinking about the wands in Harry Potter. Every single element to the Harry story has so much more to give and I hope you have enjoyed your read so far and thank you for staying with me!
Again, I always like to hear other Potterhead’s thoughts and opinions, so please do leave a comment below, I would really appreciate it!
Now that we have touched on wands, I’d like now to turn our attention back to Garrick Ollivander, after all, he is the one responsible for really changing the way wands were a part of wizard life!
Keep reading my friends!
Garrick Ollivander – Master Wandmaker
Garrick Ollivander was a half-blood wizard, born in 1908, Many moons ago!
The Ollivanders have had such a long association with wands and wandlore, I mean even their surname Ollivander means, ‘He who owns the olive wand’ you can’t get any more dedicated than that!
Garrick was a student at Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry and was sorted by the sorting hat into Ravenclaw house.
Garrick, growing up around the wand-making professional, displayed many skills to that of a proficient wandmaker from an early age. It was an early desire of his to vastly improve wand cores and the craftmanship of wands. Before long Garrick had made himself a personal goal of finding the ‘ideal wand’
As we explored earlier in the article, Garrick would only use three named above cores to the wands he crafted but it wasn’t always this approach that was taken when creating wands.
Prior to this wizards would take an element that was magical and in some way relevant to them with them to their visit to the shop and Garrick would use their own choice as the core to their wand.
But Garrick, over time, became a firm believer that in doing so this method changed the wands characteristics and in essence altered the wand’s performance.
His change to this process was that using his expert wand craftsmanship he would insert a powerful magical element as the core of the wand.
This way the wand that was ‘right’ for the witch or wizard would then present itself in a way that paired the wand and wizard together. What an ingenious man Garrick Ollivander really is!
Like any change, initially, many wizards were not happy with this approach to the manufacturing of wands. But it wasn’t long before many witches and wizards were reporting incredible success with this technique, so much so that Oillivander’s technique was hailed a huge improvement over the previous method and Mr Ollivander had created himself both an excellent product and business model alike.
In fact, he soon became the envy of many in the industry as this ‘pairing’ method had become the preferred manner in which to purchase your wand. Mr Ollivander had become ‘the best’!
Something I find so exciting about Ollivander (and I am sure you do also) is that he is able to remember every single wand he has ever sold! That in itself is one amazing feat! No chance of getting a refund then Mr Ollivander?
I love the fact also that visitors to his shop are duly greeted by Mr Ollivander, not by a “hello” but by having their wand specifications repeated back to them on entry! Absolutely classic Ollivander!
Although Garrick was a very intelligent and good man at heart, Harry was somewhat unsure about the man, especially after Garrick’s comment about he who shall not be named, stating that he did ‘great things’ with a wand, ‘terrible, yes, but great’.
It just shows that too much a good thing can go bad in a sense that although Garrick worked wonders as a wandmaker, he sometimes become so fixated with what great magic a wizard could perform with a wand, this could cloud his judgement when assessing if a wizard should perform such magic with a wand!
Harry’s friendship was strengthened somewhat after Ollivander finally revealed the dangers and true nature of the elder wand, which was a good turn as armed with this vital information, it would eventually help Harry in defeating the dark lord for good!
I wonder how much of a responsibility Garrick Ollivander felt as a mainstream wandmaker in London? He actually would play a pivotal role really in magical events given the fact he was providing so many powerful witches and wizards with their trusty wands?
What are your ideas and thoughts on this? Let’s share them below!
I myself do feel for Garrick, it was quite clear that he was terrified of Voldemort and like the vast majority of the wizarding world wouldn’t even use his name, preferring to refer to the dark lord as ‘you know who’.
Can you imagine the lasting damage done when he was in fact kidnapped by the death eaters and later tortured by Voldemort and forced to disclose details of the relationship between his and Harry’s wand?
What an ordeal to go through, poor man! Equally, you can imagine Voldemort’s joy of discovering via Ollivander the simple solution to his problem was to use someone else’s wand to destroy Harry and this led to him using Lucius Malfoy’s wand as we explored already in this article!
I hope you can get an idea of the importance Ollivander has in our magical tale and before we call this article to a close it seems only fair that now we have discussed in some good detail the various wands and how they are suited to their owner, that we now look at the famous shop that they are purchased from!
Ollivanders – Aint No Place Better!
I don’t know about you, but for me, what could top finding out that you’ve been invited to join the best school for witchcraft and wizardry?
The is one ONE thing that could top that in my humble opinion.
That is making the trip to purchase your first ever magical WAND! It’s what dreams are made of!
Ollivanders is a famous shop where all it all begins!
There is a lot of unexplored and unknown facts about the Ollivander’s shop, but what we do know is that its origins as mentioned at the start of the article are around 382 B.C and that the family arrived in Britain at the same time as the Romans, so already there is some amazing history to the family.
Initially, Ollivander’s consisted of a simple stall in Diagon Alley, London with a sole intention of selling wizards good quality wands, instead of the poorly made and inadequate wands the Londoners had been using up until then.
The business must have grown to the point where a permanent property was used to cater for demand. It was (as we have talked about) Garricks passion and his revolutionary technique to wand-making that made the shop the best place in Britain to get a wand and the shop was seldom closed, except for Christmas holidays where a sign stating that Garrick had ‘wandered out for a spell will return later’ would hang in the window.
The only other time the shop was closed that is of relevance is of course when Garrick was kidnapped by the death eaters for Voldemort’s interrogation purposes!
The shop itself could have done with a good spring clean and it was filled with dust and clutter, and given it wasn’t the biggest of real estate there were literally thousands of wands littered throughout! I think Ollivander’s must have had an amazing atmosphere about the place, especially if you were an aspiring 11-year-old wizard!
It should be noted that in High Street there was in fact another Ollivander’s branch and this was run by an associate of Garricks.
The last point I’d like you to be aware of regarding both the shop and Garrick himself is that after the shop was closed due to the kidnapping, it is unclear whether Garrick returned to open his beloved Ollivander’s.
Maybe he was quick to return after the death of the dark lord and pick up where he left or maybe it was just too much for Garrick and the shop was closed on a more permanent basis!
I guess we’ll never know….. or will we!?
Time To Vanish! – Thank You!
I would like to thank you for taking the time out to read my article today, I hope my writing around Harry Potter information has tickled your fancy and that you enjoyed your read.
I really appreciate you stopping by and as mentioned, please feel free to leave a comment below around the wands, Garrick or any other topic around these amazing movie productions!
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