Harry Potter Characters and Their Wands

Harry Potter Characters and Their Wands

The Harry Potter universe is chock-full of lore and history. There is so much to learn in the seven books and the add-on books by J.K. Rowling such as Quidditch Through the Ages, The Tales of Beedle the Bard, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. 

There is also the Cursed Child script, the more recent Fantastic Beasts movies, and the Pottermore website. It seems never-ending, and in such an extended magical world, it probably is.

From these, we have gathered snippets of information on many different things, and today we are going to put some of those snippets together and look at the wands in the Harry Potter universe and the characters that wield them. 

Check out these incredible fire-shooting wands here!

The Wandmaker Garrick Ollivander

We are introduced to wandmaker Garrick Ollivander in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone when Rubeus Hagrid takes an eleven-year-old wizard to Diagon Alley to shop for school supplies. 

This is our first real look at the wizarding world, and we learn quite a lot in this small glimpse. We see how well-known Harry Potter is, even though he is completely unaware of this. We discover that Harry’s parents did not leave him destitute as Hagrid takes us to visit Gringotts, the wizarding bank run by goblins, where Harry takes out enough Galleons, Sickles, and Knuts to buy his school supplies and more. 

Harry next goes to Madame Malkin's robes shop to buy his school uniform. This is where he first encounters the sneering young wizard Draco Malfoy, who is an unpleasant character right off the bat.

 After that, it was off to Flourish and Blotts for school books, the apothecary for some potion ingredients, and then to Eeylops Owl Emporium, where Hagrid bought Harry his snowy owl, Hedwig. 


Incendio Harry Potter's Wand
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After all that shopping, it was just the wand left to buy, and Hagrid led the way to Ollivander’s wand shop. The Ollivanders were a wizard family that had been in the wand-making business since 382 B.C., as stated over the door of the shop.

Garrick Ollivander knew immediately who Harry was, telling him that he had his mother’s eyes. Ollivander remembered every wand he had ever sold and told Harry about his parents buying their wands. Lily, his mother, had bought a willow wand, ten and a quarter inches long, and his father James had bought an eleven-inch mahogany wand.  

Unicorn Hair and Other Magical Wand Cores

We learned here that no two wands are the same, and that the wand chooses the wizard. There are many wand woods with different traits, and every Ollivander wand is made with either a dragon heartstring, phoenix feather, or unicorn tail hair core. 

Dragon heartstring for power, phoenix feather for a range of magic, and unicorn hair for the most consistent magic. Harry tries out a selection of wands but to no avail. Ollivander calls him a tricky customer and finally brings him a wand that works perfectly.

Harry’s Wand

This wand was eleven inches long, made from holly with a phoenix feather core. Ollivander tells Harry that the phoenix who gave this tail feather gave only one more, and its brother is the wand that made the lightning bolt scar on his forehead. In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, when he was forced to duel the dark wizard Voldemort, the twin cores recognized each other and the wands refused to attack one another. 

Holly is a rare wand wood, known among wandmakers to be protective and healing. It is said to repel evil forces, which suited Harry Potter down to the ground, what with all of that evil lurking around after him. 

Harry’s wand went through a lot with him and helped him out of some sticky situations. He was very upset when it was badly damaged by a rebounding curse that Hermione cast in Godric’s Hollow, in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. He was thankfully able to fix it later with the powerful magic of the Elder Wand.    

Draco Malfoy

Malfoy was an obnoxious Slytherin student with strong beliefs about pureblood wizards, half-bloods, and muggles. He spent most of his time at Hogwarts trying to wind Harry Potter up, and succeeding most of the time. Draco had a ten-inch hawthorn wand with a unicorn hair core.

Hermione Granger’s Wand

Hermione was one of Harry Potter’s best friends, known to many as the brightest witch of her age. Her wand was made by Ollivander, it was ten and three-quarter inches long, made from vinewood with a dragon heartstring core. 

Hermione was a highly skilled witch and dragon heartstring was known to produce some of the most powerful wands, so she and her wand were well matched. Hemione’s beautifully crafted vinewood wand can be purchased here.

Incendio Harry Potter's vinewood wand

Ron’s Wands

Ron Weasley was Harry’s other best friend, and the two boys and Hermione made quite a formidable trio. Ron first owned an ash wand with a unicorn hair core, but this was an old wand that had belonged to his brother Charlie. 

It is known in wand lore that an ash wand should not be passed on from the original owner, as it will lose power, especially if it has a unicorn hair core. Ron didn’t seem to be very good at magic in his first year, despite being from a large wizarding family, and perhaps his hand-me-down wand had a lot to do with that.

In Ron’s second year at Hogwarts, he and Harry made quite an entrance when they flew the Weasleys' enchanted Ford Anglia to school. The car crashed into the Whomping Willow on the grounds of Hogwarts, and it got a bit of a bashing before it disappeared into the Forbidden Forest. In the kerfuffle, Ron’s ash wand was snapped in half.


Incendio Harry Potter's car crashed into the Whomping Willow
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He bound his wand together with Spellotape, but for the whole school year, his spells backfired on him. He even found himself vomiting up slugs at one point after he tried to curse Malfoy with the same. The broken ash wand proved useful at the end of the year, however, when Gilderoy Lockhart took it and tried to perform a memory loss spell on Ron and Harry. The wand backfired and the spell hit Lockhart instead, saving the two boys from a very forgetful future. 

In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Ron Weasley got his own wand. It was 14 inches long and made of willow with a unicorn tail hair core, and it served him much better than his old one.

Neville Longbottom and his Wands

Neville Longbottom also started Hogwarts with a wand passed on from someone else. Neville’s first wand had belonged to his father, Frank Longbottom. This wand was an unknown length, wood, and core. The wand was broken by a death eater during the battle at the Department of Mysteries, in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. 

Neville purchased a new wand soon after, from Ollivander's wand shop. It was an unknown wand length, made of cherry wood with a unicorn hair core. Cherry wood was rare and said to give a wand strange powers. This is one of the last wands sold by Ollivander, as he was taken by death eaters the very next day, making Neville Longbottom one of the last people to see Ollivander before he was rescued by Dobby.

The Wands of the Triwizard Champions

The Triwizard Tournament took place in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. The tournament is a contest between the three largest wizarding schools in Europe, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the United Kingdom, Durmstrang Institute, situated in the far north of Europe, and Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, located in southern France. Each school is represented by one student, their names chosen magically.

The tournament was held at Hogwarts in 1994, and instead of three champions, one from each school, this time there were four champions chosen, Harry Potter’s name having been sneaked in there for nefarious Voldemort-related reasons. 

The other champions were Cedric Diggory from Hogwarts, Viktor Krum from Durmstrang, and Fleur Delacour from Beauxbatons. Their wands were all checked by Garrick Ollivander to make sure that they were in good condition before the tournament, so we learned some interesting facts about their wands.

Cedric Diggory 

Cedric was a Hogwarts student, a handsome Hufflepuff, captain of the Hufflepuff Quidditch team playing as a seeker, and a school prefect. His wand was twelve and a quarter inches long, made of ash with, according to its maker, Ollivander, “a single hair from the tail of a particularly fine male unicorn.”  His wand was described as ‘pleasantly springy’, because he kept it in good condition. 

Ash wand wood owners are said to be kind, generous and romantic, and Cedric Diggory was a testament to that. He tragically died at the hands of the evil wizard Lord Voldemort after he and Harry Potter jointly won the Triwizard Tournament. 

Viktor Krum

Viktor Krum was a Bulgarian Durmstrang student and seeker for the Bulgarian National Quidditch team, so he was quite well known in the wizarding world and Ron Weasley was starstruck by him for a while. Krum was a rather serious character. He had a crush on Hermione Granger, taking her to the Yule Ball and keeping in touch after the tournament, as he and Hermione wrote each other letters for a time. 

Krum’s wand was crafted by the European wand maker Gregorovitch. It was an unusually thick wand, and quite rigid, like Krum himself really. It was ten and one-quarter inches long, made from hornbeam wood.

Hornbeam is a type of wand wood that is known to attune quickly with its master and align with their morals and ethics, whatever they may be. A hornbeam wand will refuse to perform spells that go against these beliefs. Krum's wand had a dragon heartstring core, which as a rule would make a wand very powerful, but somewhat temperamental.       

Fleur Delacour

Fleur is first introduced to us in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire when she is picked as the Triwizard Tournament champion for Beauxbatons. She is a beautiful French witch who became part of the Weasley family when she married Bill Weasley at the beginning of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. 

Fleur’s wand is unique in that it contains Veela hair from her grandmother. Veela are part-human magical creatures, and their hair is known to be magical. Fleur’s Veela grandmother makes Fleur one-quarter Veela, which makes her beauty really stand out. At first, Fleur was a little arrogant and quite unlikeable, but she changed over the years and was accepted into the Weasley family when she proved her love for Bill after he was disfigured by a werewolf.

As well as a Veela hair core, her wand was made from Rosewood, which is not a common wand wood, and was nine and a half inches in length.

Incendio Harry Potter's Wand
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Hogwarts Professors and Their Wands

We know that Hogwarts headmaster, the great wizard Albus Dumbledore, possessed the most powerful wand in the wizarding world, the Elder Wand, during the time that Harry was a Hogwarts student. 

You can buy the fire-shooting version of Dumbledore's wand here! The Elder Wand was known to have been created by Death, from an Elder tree. It contained a tail hair from a Thestral, and it was fifteen inches in length. Nothing is known about the type of wand that Dumbledore used before the Elder Wand came to him. You can learn a little more about the Elder Wand here. 

However, we don’t know a lot about the wands of other Hogwarts professors. These wonderful witches and wizards played important parts in the Harry Potter universe and their wands may give us a small glimpse into who they were.

Professor McGonagall

Minerva McGonagall was an animagus who could turn into a sleek tabby cat at will. She was the head of Gryffindor House and the Transfiguration professor, even transfiguring and animating the enormous wizard chess set that protected the Philosopher’s Stone. 

Incendio Harry Potter's wizard chess set
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She was an extremely brave and skilled witch, protective of her students, and she did not suffer fools gladly. She joined the Order of the Phoenix and helped in the resistance against Voldemort, and she duelled death eaters in the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, in which Albus Dumbledore was tragically murdered. 

McGonagall stayed at Hogwarts to protect the students, even after it was taken over by Voldemort, and she fought valiantly throughout the Battle of Hogwarts. Minerva McGonagall's wand was made from fir wood, nine and a half inches long with a dragon heartstring core. Fir wands are known to favor owners who are particularly intimidating, strong of mind, and resilient, so it is no wonder that this wand chose Minerva. 

Professor Sybill Trelawney

Trelawney was the Professor of Divination at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. She was a strange character, not really taken seriously by the students or other teachers. She was given the post at Hogwarts because Headmaster Albus Dumbledore was present for her prophecy about the chosen one and the dark lord. Learn more about Trelawney's prophecy here.

Her wand was nine and a half inches, made from hazel wood with a unicorn hair core. Hazel wood is said to make quite a sensitive wand which can manifest the emotional state of the witch or wizard who wields it. 

Remus Lupin

Lupin was the Defence Against the Dark Arts professor at Hogwarts for one year. He was a loyal member of the Order of the Phoenix, fighting against Voldemort and his death eaters over the years. He had been close to James Potter and Sirius Black so he cared deeply for Harry and his friends.

He was also a werewolf. 

Indendio Harry Potter's Wand
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He owned a cypress wand, fitting for Lupin as these are associated with nobility. It is said that a witch or wizard chosen by a cypress wand will die a hero, and unfortunately Lupin, along with his wife, did. His wand was ten and a quarter inches and had a unicorn hair core.  

Hagrid’s Umbrella

We have to mention Rubeus Hagrid and his wonderful pink umbrella. Hagrid is the groundskeeper of Hogwarts, a half-giant who was somewhat of a father figure to Harry. 

When Hagrid was a Hogwarts student, he had a sixteen-inch oak wand. 

This was broken by the Ministry of Magic when Hagrid was wrongfully expelled, but he secretly kept the pieces inside a pink umbrella and used this to perform magic from time to time, most notably when he gave Harry’s cousin Dudley a pig's tail on his backside, which he had to have surgically removed.

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