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Harry Potter's wand

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Harry Potter's wand
History information
Manufacturer

Garrick Ollivander[1]

Made

Before 1938

Master(s)
Owner(s)
Material information
Wood

Holly[1]

Core

Phoenix feather[1]

Length

11"[1]

Characteristics

Nice and supple, brother of Voldemort's wand[1]

Harry: "I don't want it."
Ron: "What? Are you mental?"
Harry: "I know it's powerful. But I was happier with mine."
Harry Potter on his desire to give up the Elder Wand in favour of his own wand.[src]

Harry Potter's wand was 11 inches long, made of holly and had a phoenix feather core.[1] The feather was donated by Fawkes, Albus Dumbledore's phoenix. It was revealed by Garrick Ollivander that Tom Riddle's wand core also came from Fawkes, making the two wands "brothers". Harry's wand was described as being "nice and supple."[1]

History

Purchase

"The wand chooses the wizard. That much has always been clear to those of us who have studied wandlore... These connections are complex. An initial attraction, and then a mutual quest for experience, the wand learning from the wizard, the wizard from the wand."
Garrick Ollivander on wands.[src]
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Harry Potter holding his wand for the first time.

Harry obtained his wand from Ollivander, at a price of seven Galleons, just before his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He had tried out many other wands first with little success, but felt a warm feeling upon being handed the holly wand.[1] Despite his wand being brothers with Lord Voldemort's wand, noted by Ollivander after Harry's wand had been chosen, Harry generally did not put much thought into this connection at first, regarding the relationship as something that the wand could not help, any more than he could help being related to his aunt.

Use at Hogwarts

Harry wielded this wand throughout his Hogwarts career and demonstrated his growing magical skill particularly in Defence against the Dark Arts and Duelling. He has also performed powerful magic with this wand such as, the very advanced Patronus Charm and an impressive Shield Charm.

Stolen

Harry attended the Quidditch World Cup with the Weasley family and Hermione Granger. During this time, Barty Crouch Jr. managed to fight off his father's Imperius Curse long enough to take Harry's wand and cast the Dark Mark into the sky with it. This caused some Ministry of Magic officials to be suspicious of Harry, after it was discovered, upon using Prior Incantato, that his wand had cast Morsmordre (the spell that conjures the Dark Mark).[3]

Harry's wand and Voldemort's wand

Harry Potter: "Professor, when I was in the graveyard, there was a moment when Voldemort's wand and mine sort of...connected."
Albus Dumbledore: "Priori Incantatem."
— Harry and Albus Dumbledore.[src]
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Priori Incantatem taking effect during the Duel in Little Hangleton

When Lord Voldemort returned and forced Harry to duel him in the Little Hangleton graveyard, the rare magical effect of Priori Incantatem was triggered. Their wands recognised each other as "brothers" and refused to attack one another. A battle of wills began, and Harry's wand forced Voldemort's to regurgitate its spells, resulting in the emergence of the spirits of James and Lily Potter, Bertha Jorkins, Frank Bryce and the recently murdered Cedric Diggory. After Harry broke off the connection, they lingered for a while to hinder Lord Voldemort and the Death Eaters. This gave Harry enough time to escape.[3]

Weapon of "The Chosen One"

"Your wand recognised him when he pursued you, recognised a man who was both kin and mortal enemy, and regurgitated some of his own magic against him. Your wand now contained the power of your enormous courage and of Voldemort's own deadly skill."
Albus Dumbledore on Harry's wand.[src]

In the aftermath of the Triwizard Tournament and Voldemort's return Harry possessed magical knowledge and experience that could be said to significantly exceed that of his fellow students on account of his being forced to essentially learn a variety of advanced spells to hold his own during the competition. He wielded this wand in many epic conflicts such as that at the Ministry and against the Inferi in the Horcrux Cave.

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Lucius Malfoy's wand, used by Voldemort, cracking due to the power of Harry's wand

When the Order of the Phoenix evacuated Harry from 4 Privet Drive, they were ambushed by over thirty Death Eaters and Lord Voldemort himself. When Lord Voldemort attacked Harry, Harry's wand recognised him as an enemy, despite the fact he was using Lucius Malfoy's wand instead of his own, in order to avoid causing the reverse-spell effect. Harry's wand shot "a spurt of golden fire" at Voldemort, destroying Lucius's wand and allowing Harry and Rubeus Hagrid to escape to safety.[5]. Dumbledore theorised that this event, which Ollivander himself described as "unique", was the result of Harry's wand having absorbed a portion of Voldemort's extensive magical skill during their duel in the Little Hangleton graveyard which it regurgitated upon their encounter.

Damage

Hermione Granger: "You're still really angry at me, aren't you?"
Harry Potter: "No. No, Hermione, I know it was an accident. You were trying to get us out of there alive, and you were incredible. I'd be dead if you hadn't been there to help me."
— Harry and Hermione after the latter accidentally broke his wand.[src]
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Hermione showing Harry that his wand was broken by a curse she used.

On Christmas Eve of that year, Harry and Hermione ventured to Godric's Hollow during their search for Lord Voldemort’s Horcruxes, hoping to speak to Bathilda Bagshot. Voldemort had foreseen Harry's intentions, and had planted his snake Nagini in Bathilda's corpse beforehand. As soon as she had Harry alone, Nagini attacked him. Hermione raced to his defence, using a Blasting Curse to repel the snake. The curse ricocheted, damaging Harry's wand. Harry asked Hermione to repair it afterwards, but it was too badly damaged. Harry was very upset at the loss of his wand, though he was not angry with Hermione, recognising that she had saved his life. Despite its destruction, Harry kept the pieces of the wand in his mokeskin pouch.

Harry and Hermione took turns using her wand, until Ronald Weasley returned to them carrying wands he had taken from Snatchers. Thereafter, Harry made do with a blackthorn wand, although it did not work as well for him as his own wand had. However, the trio was caught by Fenrir Greyback's Snatcher gang and taken to Malfoy Manor, in the spring of 1998, and all their wands were confiscated. In the ensuing fray, Harry disarmed Draco Malfoy and took his wand.[5]

Repair

"As his wand resealed, red sparks flew out of its end. Harry knew that he had succeeded. He picked up the holly and phoenix wand and felt a sudden warmth in his fingers, as though wand and hand were rejoicing at their reunion."
—Description of the wand's repair.[src]

During the Battle of Hogwarts,  Harry duelled Lord Voldemort for the final time. As the Elder Wand, which Lord Voldemort wielded, was loyal to Harry, the Killing Curse directed at Harry rebounded and killed Lord Voldemort. Harry then used the Elder Wand to successfully repair his original wand and planned to return the Elder Wand to the grave of Albus Dumbledore.[5]

Other wands

Harry Potter has owned several different wands up until the end of the Second Wizarding War, though only the Holly & Phoenix feather wand is considered truly his. Other wands include:

  • Hermione Granger's wand - Vine, dragon heartstring, 10¾ inches. This was the wand carried by Hermione Granger throughout her years at Hogwarts. When she accidentally broke his wand, she shared her own with Harry. The wand was lost after it was left behind after their escape from Malfoy Manor.
  • Snatcher's wand - Blackthorn, 10 inches, core unknown. This wand was stolen by Ron from a Snatcher and gifted to Harry when the former returned to the group. As its allegiance was not won by Harry, the wand did not respond well to him, making all of his spells seem weaker than they had before. It was left behind at Malfoy Manor when the group escaped.
  • Draco Malfoy's wand - Hawthorn, unicorn hair, 10 inches. This was the wand carried by Draco Malfoy throughout his years at Hogwarts. During the Skirmish at Malfoy Manor, Harry wrestled this wand from Malfoy's hands, winning its allegiance, and using until the end of the Second Wizarding War. Its ultimate fate is unknown.
  • The Elder Wand - Elder, thestral hair, 15 inches. The Elder Wand had a long and bloody history until it finally came into the hands of Albus Dumbledore. Though Lord Voldemort stole the wand itself from Dumbledore's grave, its true allegiance lay with Dumbledore's disarmer: Draco Malfoy. Thus when Harry won the allegiance of Draco's wand, he also won the allegiance of the Elder Wand. However, he was only in possession of the actual wand for a very short time, and performed only one spell with it - Reparo on his broken Holly wand.
  • Voldemort's wand (possibly) - Yew, phoenix feather, 13 1/2 inches. This was the wand that Lord Voldemort carried for most of his life. After his final duel with Voldemort, Harry likely won the allegiance of the wand (if it was still intact at the time). However, given the fact that Voldemort used this wand to murder Harry's parents, it is highly unlikely that Harry will ever physically possess, let alone use, the wand.

Behind the scenes

Harrypotterwand

Harry Potter's wand

  • In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, when Harry, Ron, and Hermione are captured by the Snatchers in the forest, Greyback searches Harry and it is just seen that he finds his broken wand and throws it away. This would justify his actions Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, when he simply breaks the Elder Wand and throws it away as opposed to the seventh book where he repairs his holly wand.
  • In the film adaptations, Harry's wand is 14 inches long, as opposed to 11 inches in the books.[citation needed]
  • In film adaptations of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and Chamber of Secrets, Harry's wand is a smooth wand, unlike the tree-trunk style wand in movies 3-8. In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, director, Alfonso Cuarón offered actors Daniel Radcliffe (Harry), Rupert Grint (Ron), and Emma Watson (Hermione) a selection of new wands to choose from, that would reflect their character's personality better. Designers liked Daniel's choice of a tree-trunk style wand, as it is more magical.[citation needed] It can also be said that they are smooth in the beginning because they're rather new, having only served their masters for some months and later transformed to match their masters. This theory can be supported with reference to Garrick Ollivander's statement that wands "learn" from wizards and vice versa.
  • Harry's wand is #963 according to film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone when Garrick Ollivander chooses this wand off the shelf.
  • Holly wands are said to be suited to wizards who need assistance overcoming anger issues, and those engaged in a dangerous and spiritual quest. Harry Potter dealt with overcoming anger in his adolescent years, partially caused by a shared connection with Lord Voldemort through the Horcrux Voldemort accidentally created in Harry. He was also prophesied to be the one to kill Voldemort, and engaged in a year-long hunt for Horcruxes in an attempt to fulfill this prophecy. Ollivander also noted that a mix of holly and phoenix feather, if properly matched, would result in a nigh-unstoppable wizard.
  • In the films, Harry's wand is made from a medium-dark wood despite holly being a pale wood.

Author's comments

J. K. Rowling has explained her choice of holly for Harry's wand wood:

It was not an arbitrary decision: holly has certain connotations that were perfect for Harry, particularly when contrasted with the traditional associations of yew, from which Voldemort’s wand is made. European tradition has it that the holly tree (the name comes from ‘holy’) repels evil, while yew, which can achieve astonishing longevity (there are British yew trees over two thousand years old), can symbolise both death and resurrection; the sap is also poisonous. Some time after I had given Harry his holly-and-phoenix wand I came across a description of how the Celts had assigned trees to different parts of the year and discovered that, entirely by coincidence, I had assigned Harry the ‘correct’ wood for his day of birth. I therefore decided to give Ron and Hermione Celtic wand woods, too... I liked having a hidden connection between Harry, Ron and Hermione’s wands that only I knew about (until now, anyway).[6]

Appearances

Harry Potter's wand

Harry Potter's wand

Notes and references

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