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Wand Lore

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Wand Lore

Postby From the Desk of the Minister » Thu Apr 25, 2013 9:26 am

WAND LORE


LENGTH
    Most commonly between 9-14". Extremely short (under 8") and long (over 15") are exceptionally rare.

    Since numbers have known magical properties, it's also possible that the wand's length have some symbolic meaning related to their owners, much like their core. For example, the wand of Tom Riddle, a reputed Dark wizard, measures 13½ inches, and thirteen is commonly an omen of misfortune or evil in the folklore and religion of various cultures around the world. Wands that are unusually short, anything less than 9", tend to belong to people "lacking" in personalities.

    According to Garrick Ollivander, matching a wand to a wizard solely by height is a crude measure. Long wands tend to suit those with big personalities, of a more spacious and dramatic style of magic. Neater wands favour elegant and refined spell-casting. Particularly short wands will choose wizards whose character lacks something.

    source: Harry Potter wiki, Wandlore


CORES
    All information is taken from the Harry Potter wiki.

    According to Ollivander, phoenix feathers, unicorn hairs, and dragon heartstrings are the most powerful and best of magical cores. Ollivander has strictly sold only the 3 Supreme Cores since 1935. Although older or foreign wands may have different cores, they are generally weaker and more temperamental.

    Dragon Heartstring - As a rule, dragon heartstrings produce wands with the most power, and which are capable of the most flamboyant spells. Dragon wands tend to learn quicker than other types. While they can change allegiance if won from their original master, they always bond strongly with the current owner.

    The dragon wand tends to be easiest to turn to the Dark Arts, though it will not incline that way of its own accord. It is also the most prone of the three cores to accidents, being somewhat temperamental. It also tends to be lethally hazardous if combined with certain woods.

    Unicorn Hair - Unicorn hair generally produces the most consistent magic, and is least subject to fluctuations and blockages. Wands with unicorn cores are generally the most difficult to turn to the Dark Arts. They are the most faithful of all wands, and usually remain strongly attached to their first owner, irrespective of whether he or she was an accomplished witch or wizard.

    Minor disadvantages of unicorn hair are that they do not make the most powerful wands (although the wand wood may compensate) and that they are prone to melancholy if seriously mishandled, meaning that the hair may ‘die’ and need replacing.

    Phoenix Feather - This is one of the rarest core types. Phoenix feathers are capable of the greatest range of magic, though they may take longer than either unicorn hair or dragon heartstring cores to reveal this. They show the most initiative, sometimes acting of their own accord, a quality that many witches and wizards dislike.

    Phoenix feather wands are always the pickiest when it comes to potential owners, for the creature from which they are taken is one of the most independent and detached in the world. These wands are the hardest to tame and to personalise, and their allegiance is usually hard won.

WOOD
    All information is taken from the Harry Potter wiki This is not meant to be an exhaustive list.

    Not sure which wood to use for your character's wand? JK Rowling said she often used birth months to pick wand woods according to theThe Celtic Wood calendar.

    Spoiler: Woods A-L show
    Acacia - Difficult to match with a wizard. Acacia wands generally refused to produce magic for anyone but their owners, but conversely, seemed to withhold their full power from all but the most gifted wizards. Owners of Acacia wands were generally subtle wizards, as wands made from this wood were generally unsuitable for what Ollivander termed "bangs-and-smells magic

    Alder - Whilst Alder makes for an unyielding wood, its ideal owner is not stubborn or obstinate, but often helpful, considerate and most likeable. When an alder wand is happily placed, it becomes a magnificent, loyal helpmate. Of all wand types, alder is best suited to non-verbal spell work, whence comes its reputation for being suitable only for the most advanced witches and wizards.

    Apple - Powerful and best suited to an owner of high aims and ideals, mixes poorly with Dark Arts. It is said that the possessor of an apple wand will be well-loved and long-lived. An unusual ability to converse with other magical beings in their native tongues is often found among apple wand owners.

    Ash - The ash wand clings to its one true master and ought not to be passed on or gifted from the original owner, because it will lose power and skill. Those witches and wizards best suited to ash wands are not lightly swayed from their beliefs or purposes. The ideal owner may be stubborn, and will certainly be courageous, but never crass or arrogant.

    Aspen - Wand-quality aspen wood is white and fine-grained, and highly prized by all wand-makers for its stylish resemblance to ivory and its usually outstanding charmwork. The proper owner of the aspen wand is often an accomplished duellist, or destined to be so, for the aspen wand is one of those particularly suited to martial magic. Aspen wand owners are generally strong-minded and determined, more likely than most to be attracted by quests and new orders; this is a wand for revolutionaries.

    Beech - The true match for a beech wand will be, if young, wise beyond his or her years, and if full-grown, rich in understanding and experience. Beech wands perform very weakly for the narrow-minded and intolerant. When properly matched, the beech wand is capable of a subtlety and artistry rarely seen in any other wood, hence its lustrous reputation.

    Blackthorn - Blackthorn, which is a very unusual wand wood, has the reputation of being best suited to a warrior. It is a curious feature of the blackthorn bush, which sports wicked thorns, that it produces its sweetest berries after the hardest frosts, and the wands made from this wood appear to need to pass through danger or hardship with their owners to become truly bonded. Given this condition, the blackthorn wand will become as loyal and faithful a servant as one could wish.

    Black Walnut - Less common than the standard walnut wand, that of black walnut seeks a master of good instincts and powerful insight. It has one pronounced quirk, which is that it is abnormally attuned to inner conflict, and loses power dramatically if its possessor practises any form of self-deception. Paired with a sincere, self-aware owner, however, it becomes one of the most loyal and impressive wands of all, with a particular flair in all kinds of charmwork.

    Cedar - Garrick Ollivander believed that whenever he met one who carries a cedar wand, he found strength of character and unusual loyalty. His father, Gervaise Ollivander, used always to say, ‘you will never fool the cedar carrier,’ and he agrees: the cedar wand finds its perfect home where there is perspicacity and perception.
    Ollivander said that he would go further than his father, however, in saying that he has never yet met the owner of a cedar wand whom he would care to cross, especially if harm is done to those of whom they are fond. The witch or wizard who is well-matched with cedar carries the potential to be a frightening adversary, which often comes as a shock to those who have thoughtlessly challenged them.

    Cherry - Cherry wood often makes a wand that possesses truly lethal power, whatever the core - though if paired with dragon heartstring, the wand ought never to be teamed with a wizard without exceptional self-control and strength of mind.

    Chestnut - Chestnut is a most curious wood with little character or traits of its own other than its attraction to witches and wizards who are skilled tamers of magical beasts, those who possess great gifts in Herbology, and those who are natural fliers. Instead, the wand of chestnut tends to take on character of the wand core and the owner.

    Cypress - Cypress is associated with valour. Wands of cypress find their soul mates among the brave, the bold and the self-sacrificing: those who are unafraid to confront the shadows in their own and others’ natures.

    Dogwood - Dogwood wands are quirky and mischievous; they have playful natures and insist upon partners who can provide them with scope for excitement and fun. They have been known to perform outstanding spells under difficult conditions, and when paired with a suitably clever and ingenious witch or wizard, can produce dazzling enchantments. An interesting foible of many dogwood wands is that they refuse to perform non-verbal spells and they are often rather noisy.

    Ebony - This jet-black wand wood has an impressive appearance and reputation, being highly suited to all manner of combative magic, and to Transfiguration. Ebony is happiest in the hand of those with the courage to be themselves. Frequently non-conformist, highly individual or comfortable with the status of outsider, ebony wand owners have been found both among the ranks of the Order of the Phoenix and among the Death Eaters.

    Elder - The rarest wand wood of all, and reputed to be deeply unlucky, elder wands are trickier to master than any other. They contain powerful magic, but scorn to remain with any owner who is not the superior of his or her company; it takes a remarkable wizard to keep an elder wand for any length of time. The truth is that only a highly unusual person will find their perfect match in elder, and on the rare occasion when such a pairing occurs, it may be taken as certain that the witch or wizard in question is marked out for a special destiny.

    Elm - Elm wands prefer owners with presence, magical dexterity and a certain native dignity. Of all wand woods, elm - in the experience of Garrick Ollivander - produces the fewest accidents, the least foolish errors, and the most elegant charms and spells; these are sophisticated wands, capable of highly advanced magic in the right hands (which makes it highly desirable to those who espouse the pure-blood philosophy).

    Fir - This wood, coming as it does from the most resilient of trees, produces wands that demand staying power and strength of purpose in their true owners, and that they are poor tools in the hands of the changeable and indecisive. Fir wands are particularly suited to transfiguration, and favour owners of focused, strong-minded and, occasionally, intimidating demeanour.

    Hawthorn - Hawthorn ‘makes a strange, contradictory wand, as full of paradoxes as the tree that gave it birth, whose leaves and blossoms heal, and yet whose cut branches smell of death.’ Hawthorn wands may be particularly suited to healing magic, but they are also adept at curses, and it has been generally observed that the hawthorn wand seems most at home with a conflicted nature, or with a witch or wizard passing through a period of turmoil. Hawthorn is not easy to master, however, and one should only ever consider placing a hawthorn wand in the hands of a witch or wizard of proven talent, or the consequences might be dangerous. Hawthorn wands have a notable peculiarity: their spells can, when badly handled, backfire.

    Hazel - A sensitive wand, hazel often reflects its owner’s emotional state, and works best for a master who understands and can manage their own feelings. Others should be very careful handling a hazel wand if its owner has recently lost their temper, or suffered a serious disappointment, because the wand will absorb such energy and discharge it unpredictably. The positive aspect of a hazel wand more than makes up for such minor discomforts, however, for it is capable of outstanding magic in the hands of the skillful, and is so devoted to its owner that it often ‘wilts’ at the end of its master’s life. Hazel wands also have the unique ability to detect water underground, and will emit silvery, tear-shaped puffs of smoke if passing over concealed springs and wells.

    Holly - Holly is one of the rarer kinds of wand woods; traditionally considered protective, it works most happily for those who may need help overcoming a tendency to anger and impetuosity. At the same time, holly wands often choose owners who are engaged in some dangerous and often spiritual quest.

    Hornbeam - Hornbeam selects for its life mate the talented witch or wizard with a single, pure passion, which some might call obsession - more kindly - vision, which will almost always be realised. Hornbeam wands adapt more quickly than almost any other to their owner’s style of magic. Hornbeam wands likewise absorb their owner’s code of honour, whatever that might be, and will refuse to perform acts - whether for good or ill - that do not tally with their master’s principles. A particularly fine-tuned and sentient wand.

    Larch - Strong, durable and warm in colour, larch has long been valued as an attractive and powerful wand wood. The celebrated wandmaker Garrick Ollivander found that larch always created wands of hidden talents and unexpected effects, which likewise describes the master who deserves it. It is often the case that the witch or wizard who belongs to the larch wand may never realise the full extent of their considerable talents until paired with it, but that they will then make an exceptional match.

    Laurel - It is said that a laurel wand cannot perform a dishonourable act, although in the quest for glory (a not uncommon goal for those best suited to these wands), laurel wands have been known to perform powerful and sometimes lethal magic. Laurel wands are sometimes called fickle, but this is unfair; the laurel wand is unable to tolerate laziness in a possessor, and it is in such conditions that it is most easily and willingly won away.


    Spoiler: Woods M-Z show
    Mahogany - Mahogany was described by Ollivander as "pliable" and "excellent for transfiguration."

    Maple - Garrick Ollivander often found that those chosen by maple wands are by nature travellers and explorers; they are not stay-at-home wands, and prefer ambition in their witch or wizard. Fresh challenges and regular changes of scene cause this wand to literally shine, burnishing itself as it grows, with its partner, in ability and status.

    Oak - A wand for good times and bad, this is a friend as loyal as the wizard who deserves it. Wands of English oak demand partners of strength, courage and fidelity. Less well-known is the propensity for owners of English oak wands to have powerful intuition, and, often, an affinity with the magic of the natural world, with the creatures and plants that are necessary to wizardkind for both magic and pleasure.

    Pear - The golden-toned wood of pear produces wands of splendid magical powers, which give of their best in the hands of the warm-hearted, the generous and the wise. Possessors of pear wands are, in the experience of the learned wandmaker Garrick Ollivander, usually popular and well-respected.

    Pine - The straight-grained pine wand always chooses an independent, individual master who may be perceived as a loner, intriguing and perhaps mysterious. Pine wands enjoy being used creatively, and unlike some others, will adapt unprotestingly to new methods and spells. Garrick Ollivander who had never personally known the master of a pine wand to die young.

    Poplar - “If you seek integrity, search first among the poplars." It is said to be a wand to rely upon, of consistency, strength and uniform power, always happiest when working with a witch or wizard of clear moral vision.

    Redwood - Wand-quality redwood is in short supply, yet constant demand, due to its reputation for bringing good fortune to its owner. They are strongly attracted to witches and wizards who already possess the admirable ability to fall on their feet, to make the right choice, to snatch advantage from catastrophe.

    Rowan - Rowan wood was a prized wand wood due to its reputation for protection, and was noted by Garrick Ollivander to generally produce powerful, hard to break Defensive Charms. Rowan was also noted for its believed disassociation with the Dark Arts. Rowan has become associated with pure-hearted wizards, though Ollivander noted that rowan wands can also match or even outperform others in duels.

    Silver lime - This unusual and highly attractive wand wood was highly fashionable in the nineteenth century. They had a reputation for performing best for Seers and those skilled in Legilimency, mysterious arts both, which consequently gave the possessor of a silver lime wand considerable status.

    Spruce - Spruce wands are ill-matched with cautious or nervous natures, becoming positively dangerous in fumbling fingers. The spruce wand requires a firm hand, because it often appears to have its own ideas about what magic it ought to be called upon to produce. However, when a spruce wand meets its match, a bold spell-caster with a good sense of humour, it becomes a superb helper, intensely loyal to their owners and capable of producing particularly flamboyant and dramatic effects.

    Sycamore - The sycamore makes a questing wand, eager for new experience and losing brilliance if engaged in mundane activities. It is a quirk of these handsome wands that they may combust if allowed to become ‘bored,’ and many witches and wizards, settling down into middle age, are disconcerted to find their trusty wand bursting into flame in their hand as they ask it, one more time, to fetch their slippers. The sycamore’s ideal owner is curious, vital and adventurous, and when paired with such an owner, it demonstrates a capacity to learn and adapt that earns it a rightful place among the world’s most highly-prized wand woods.

    Vine - Vine wands are among the less common types, and their owners are nearly always those witches or wizards who seek a greater purpose, who have a vision beyond the ordinary and who frequently astound those who think they know them best. Vine wands seem strongly attracted by personalities with hidden depths, and Garrick Ollivander himself has found them more sensitive than any other when it comes to instantly detecting a prospective match.

    Walnut - Walnut wands are often found in the hands of highly intelligent magical innovators and inventors; this is a handsome wood possessed of unusual versatility and adaptability. The walnut wand will, once subjugated, perform any task its owner desires, provided that the user is of sufficient brilliance. This makes for a truly lethal weapon in the hands of a witch or wizard of no conscience, for the wand and the wizard may feed from each other in a particularly unhealthy manner.

    Willow - Willow is an uncommon wand wood with healing power, and Garrick Ollivander noted that the ideal owner for a willow wand often has some (usually unwarranted) insecurity, however well they may try and hide it.
    Willow wands there have consistently selected those of greatest potential, rather than those who feel they have little to learn. It has always been a proverb in the Ollivander family family that he who has furthest to travel will go fastest with willow.

    Yew - Yew wands are among the rarer kinds, and their ideal matches are likewise unusual, and occasionally notorious. The wand of yew is reputed to endow its possessor with the power of life and death, which might, of course, be said of all wands; and yet yew retains a particularly dark and fearsome reputation in the spheres of duelling and all curses. However, it is untrue to say (as those unlearned in wandlore often do) that those who use yew wands are more likely to be attracted to the Dark Arts than another. The witch or wizard best suited to a yew wand might equally prove a fierce protector of others. The yew wand never chooses either a mediocre or a timid owner.

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