Harry Potter Books Wikia

A wand was a very important object through which a witch or wizard channels magic. The wand would be created by talented wandmakers using wood and a core, e.g. ash and unicorn hair, and had a flexible trait and length.

Even though a wand could be made using the same wood and core of another wand from the same tree or creature, no two wands are precisely the same and develop their own personal character.

Even though wandless magic was possible, it was not easy to achieve and needed incredible talent and concentration. However creatures including house-elves could perform such magic without the need of a wand. The manufacturer of the wand could put their own stamp on wandmaking and use wood and core that others would not, perfecting their own product. Known manufacturers of wands included Garrick Ollivander.


The character of a wand was created by a wand wood and core combination. Wand wood was an important component in developing a wand. Certain wand woods and cores combined better. Wandmakers had different ideas about what cores should be used. Garrick Ollivander's research led him to just use unicorn hair, dragon heartstring and phoenix feather wand cores.[1]

Certain wood and cores achieved greater power, and certain wands could prove too dull. Rather than a witch and wizard choose a wand they wanted, a wand selected a witch and wizard instead. It happened when they held it for the first time. If there was an affinity, the holder would perform a perfect spell.[1]

The wand length was based on the height of a witch and wizard and for this reason, the length of their arm was taken by a person selling wands. It could be a show of power and the style in which a spell was performed when using it. Ollivander made wands known to range from nine to fourteen inches. The flexibility of the wand indicated if the wand and wizard were open to the idea of adapting to change.



The wand will not work properly for the wrong witch or wizard and it may place them in danger. At the least, the magic will be sub-par compared to the magic which could be created from the right wand. The highest power of the witch or wizard will only be achieved with the wand they have a natural affinity for.[1]

When the right wand was placed in the hand of the right witch or wizard, it would create a warm feeling and a small sign of magic may be created from the wand, including sparks. The wand will not be able to think or communicate in the same way of a sentient being, but they had their own will and were capable of their own actions.[1]

The Elder Wand

The wand will keep a record of every spell ever done by using it. The spell Priori Incantatem would create an echo of the recent spells. They could be broken and damaged, but a broken wand was a danger to the owner because the magic will be unpredictable and will not improve. The only object known to be capable of repairing a wand was the Elder Wand.

If the owner of the Elder Wand was defeated, the wand will change its loyalty to the winner. They do not work properly against their owner. If the owner died undefeated, then the wand's power died too. The Elder Wand was the only one capable of being won even if the old owner was not in possession of it at the time. However the original bond of the average wand could not truly be broken even if won by another.

Purchasing wands

In the wizarding world, wands were known for being purchased at the age of eleven. For students of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the popular choice of place to purchase the wand was Ollivanders Wand Shop. Garrick Ollivander would measure the buyer and ask them whether they were right or left handed.[1]

However a family who could not afford a new wand would hand down an old family wand, for example Charles Weasley's old wand went to Ron Weasley. If the student was expelled before completing their education, the wand would be broken.[2]

Known wands

Garrick Ollivander wands

Wand Owner Notes
10 ¼', Willow[1]
Lily Potter
11', Mahogany[1]
James Potter
16', Oak[1]
Rubeus Hagrid
Broken when Hagrid was expelled. The pieces were kept in an umbrella.
13 ½', Yew[1]
Tom Riddle
9 ½', Beechwood, Dragon Heartstring[1]
Tried by Harry Potter
7', Maple, Phoenix Feather[1]
8 ½', Ebony, Unicorn Hair[1]
12', Holly, Phoenix Feather[1]
Harry Potter
12', Ash, Unicorn Hair
Charlie Weasley and Ronald Weasley
Passed down from Charlie to Ron.[2] Piece of Unicorn Hair was stuck out. Broken in September 1992.[3]
14', Willow, Unicorn Hair
Ronald Weasley
bought in August 1993 and had one unicorn hair.[4]

Known wand-makers

Notes and sources