The Major Types Of Wand Wood & Core (& What They Mean)



The Harry Potter wand types are known to be made of several categories of magical objects, which each give way to different strengths and weaknesses and all the major types of wand woods, cores, and their meanings can be explained. Harry Potter first got his wand in The Sorcerer’s Stone from Ollivanders in Diagon Alley and quickly learned that the wand chooses the wizard. A wand, in and of itself, acts more as a conduit for the user’s magic rather than producing magic on its own, as evidenced by other Wizarding schools like Uagadou in Africa, which specializes in wandless magic.


Throughout the Harry Potter books, different Harry Potter wands are described for each character, along with their cores and woods. Wandlore is said to be a highly difficult subject to study, and masters like Ollivander or Gregorovitch were able to reach the top of their field. Wands are highly mysterious tools, sometimes acting of their own accord, and are capable of both fantastic and terrible feats according to the wizard who yields them. Given the condensed nature of the Harry Potter movies, the wands were not explored in great detail. However, with a Harry Potter television series on the way, there is a new opportunity to explore the various Harry Potter wands and those who wield them.

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Core: Troll Whisker

Troll with Harry, Ron and Hermione in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

It’s well known within the Wizarding World that there are three supreme cores within the wandmaking business, which include Dragon heartstring, Unicorn hair, and Phoenix feather. Troll whisker is an earlier substance in the different Harry Potter wands considered to be of lesser power than the rest.

It’s now rarely used because of its limitations and the dangers associated with gaining a whisker from a Troll. While seemingly inferior, the troll whisker was supposedly used in the creation of Sir Cadogan’s wand, a Knight of the Round Table in the Harry Potter universe.

Wood: Ash

Cedric Diggory and his dad in Harry Potter

Ash is well known for channeling magic energy of the different Harry Potter wands and while it may be slightly out of circulation, some of the earliest broomsticks utilized the wood in their creation. Ash is a loyal wood and will often attach itself to its original master, making them difficult to pass between different owners.

There is a prestige associated with Ash, as it’s considered to be noble in its design, yet only the bravest of wizards and witches would be able to scratch the surface of what it’s capable of. It’s, therefore, more difficult to master, but the courageous Hufflepuff Cedric Diggory was amongst those who owned an Ash wand.

Core: Coral

Gregorovitch backed up against a shelf in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Sometimes there different Harry Potter wands that are rarely used as they aren’t fully understood. The international community might actually use natural materials quite differently depending on the region and Coral is a great example of that.

The underwater substance contains plenty of magical properties of its own. The wandmaker Gregorovitch used this slightly cheaper yet rarer material in some of his own products. Perhaps the wizards and witches of the UK are actually missing out on something.

Wood: Willow

Ron Weasley raising his wand in Dumbledore's Army

Willow is a very useful wood to utilize in wandmaking of the different Harry Potter wands, but one that’s actually pretty uncommon. Ollivander himself took a liking to the material and his wand shop sold a number of variations of design, that drew from the diverse willow species available.

Its thought to have healing properties and would likely be found in the hands of a doctor or nurse. Ron Weasley’s second wand was actually made from Willow, as was that of Lily Potter’s and Scorpius Malfoy, the son of Draco.

Core: Horned Serpent

Harry Potter Talking To Snakes in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

The horns of a Horned Serpent are especially powerful in the different Harry Potter wands but appear to channel ancient magics that modern wizards and witches don’t fully understand. Much like the founders of Hogwarts had their own preferences, the Illvermorny makers utilized this core option in their wandmaking.

Because of its very obvious links to snakes the core is said to help boost the ability to communicate with serpents, often referred to as being a Parseltongue like Harry Potter. There aren’t any known users within the modern Wizarding World, but it’s undoubtedly a wand that would work well with Harry’s gifts.

Wood: Yew

Ginny Weasley

One of the most uncommon types of tree is the Yew, with just two known characters possessing this wand (Voldemort and Ginny Weasley). Of the different Harry Potter wands, it is claimed to imbue the user with incredible power, especially in the realms of dark magic, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that the respective witch or wizard will be drawn to evil.

Yew wands almost never embrace an owner who lacks courage or skill, that much has been clearly established. Interestingly, they are known to grow into adult trees when buried along with their partners.

Core: Unicorn Tail Hair

Ron Weasley with his wand

Hair obtained from a Unicorn’s tail of the different Harry Potter wands is packed to the brim with magical energy, explaining why it costs an arm and a leg for a single unit. This core is purported to be “clean”, in the sense that wands containing it are usually dependable, not to mention the challenges faced by anyone trying to use it for evil.

As a popular option in wandmaking, Unicorn tail hair wands have been employed by Ron Weasley, Remus Lupin, Cedric Diggory, Neville Longbottom, Sybill Trelawney, and Draco Malfoy, making it one of the most popular Harry Potter wand type.

Wood: Fir

Minerva McGonagall raising her wand in Harry Potter

The Ollivander family believed fir to be among the most stubborn of the different Harry Potter wands, in that their masters would be likely to survive extreme duels without much damage. This is proven when Professor McGonagall, who employs a fir wand, tolerates no less than four Stunning charms before she is knocked unconscious. These wands prefer users who are decisive and strong-willed and often fail when used by those who are unsure of themselves. In terms of magic type, transfiguration is greatly enhanced.

Core: Phoenix Feather

Voldemort Trying To Get Elder Wand From Grindelwald in Harry Potter

Although the story places an unwarranted focus on Phoenix feather wands of the different Harry Potter wands (because this core binds the protagonist and antagonist together), they are actually incredibly scarce. Unfortunately, their dynamic nature brings them in conflict with their owners, because they sometimes tend to act up without any human input.

Wands possessing a Phoenix feather core are not easy to “domesticate”, and getting one to switch loyalties is all but impossible. An interesting side-note: Fawkes is not the only bird to have given its feathers to Ollivander.

Wood: Elm

Lucius Malfoy tries to attack Harry

Elm provides the best accuracy of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, preventing easily avoidable mistakes by correcting for any imbalance in its usage. It is supremely refined and permits the generation of complex spells (assuming the witch is skilled enough.)

Regardless, due to the wood’s inclination for distinguished masters, it has obtained an unfair reputation of being elitist. Lucius Malfoy utilizes one; however, it seems to have been “inherited” from his father, Abraxas — further reinforcing the notion of pure-bloodedness.

Core: Dragon Heartstring

Bellatrix arrives with other death eaters in Harry Potter

Dragon Heartstring is taken from obviously deceased dragons (although whether they are poached for this purpose is unclear). These different Harry Potter wands are both strong and dazzling, generating some shockingly bombastic charms and spells. They form a robust attachment with their masters and can be utilized for dark magic rather effortlessly.

Witches and wizards with Dragon Heartstring wands include Hermione Granger, Dolores Umbridge, Minerva McGonagall, Lucius Malfoy, Peter Pettigrew, Bellatrix Lestrange, and Ollivander himself.

Wood: Vine

Hermione Granger holds her wand in the Forest of Dean

Of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, vine is a rare wand wood, one of the few derived from a non-tree source. It has been used for its magical properties since ancient times, starting with the age of the druids.

Wands made of vine are vehemently confident of whom they want to be owned by, so much so that they might activate in the presence of an ideal candidate (without even being touched.) Hermione’s wand is made of vine, which supposedly implies that she is destined for greatness, and she becomes Minister for Magic, so there isn’t little doubt regarding this statement.

Core: Basilisk Horn

Statue of Salazar Slytherin inside the Chamber of Secrets.

The only person capable of using a wand with such a bizarre core is Salazar Slytherin — a piece of snakewood inlaid with a tiny sliver of Basilisk horn. One of its special abilities was the power to go into sleep mode, so to speak, triggered by specific Parseltongue phrases devised by Slytherin.

Out of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, this wand has traveled the world, going from Britain to North America in the 17th century before it is negated by Gormlaith Gaunt (an ancestor of Voldemort), and interred on the Ilvermorny school campus.

Wood: Holly

Harry Potter gets his wand at Ollivander's

Holly wands are not always the most consistent of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands: their efficacy depends on the variety of magical core embedded within them. The best-known example belongs to Harry Potter himself; it is honestly a great choice in this case because this wood is helpful for wizards who are reckless more often than not.

Strange as it might sound, it is apparently a laborious task blending it with phoenix feathers because this mix has a high probability of being explosive out of all the different Harry Potter wands. Nonetheless, if there exists a user worthy of this combination, then pray for anyone who decides to challenge them.

Core: Rougarou Hair

Seraphina Picquery with MACUZA Agents in Fantastic Beasts

A North America-specific magical creature, the Rougarou is said to haunt the marshy locales of Louisiana. Appearing in Cajun legends, it resembles a werewolf, except it has a completely human body (but a canine head.)

Violetta Beauvais, a prominent wandmaker, employs the hair from this beast as a magical core; however, this fact had been unknown for a considerable period of time because of the dark nature of the Rougarou, which happened to distill itself into the wands produced of all the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands. The MACUSA President, Seraphina Picquery, owns one made of swamp mayhaw wood and Rougarou hair.

Wood: Hawthorn

Draco Malfoy in Harry Potter

Hawthorn, according to Mykew Gregorovitch, previous owner of the Elder wand, “makes a strange, contradictory wand”, referring to it as “full of paradoxes” between life and death. Ollivander agrees, saying that this wood can help with “healing magic, but they are also adept at curses.”

Hawthorn wands are tricky to control and are naturally attracted to those who are equally headstrong, such as Draco Malfoy (and, later, Harry Potter.) Unfortunately, if one does not care for it properly, the emitted magic can turn itself against the caster.

Core: Veela Hair

 Fleur Delacour holds her Wand in Harry Potter

The Eastern European Veela are based on the Sirens of Greek mythology, seeing as they wield immense power over men (well, many of them, at least.) It is said that their “dance” is incredibly tempting, leading males into rather embarrassing, or even dangerous, situations.

Although Ollivander avoids Veela hair in his wandmaking out of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, calling it too moody, Fleur Delacour’s wand is powered by a hair sourced from her maternal grandmother. How the schematics for such a personalized magical instrument were conceived has not been clarified.

Wood: Cypress

Lupin holds his wand in Harry Potter

The Cypress tree wood contains a deep generosity of spirit out of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, with many of its masters having sacrificed themselves for a heroic cause. They are often paired with courageous wizards, but only if they also happen to be pure of heart, for instance, Remus Lupin. In line with the Cypress wood theory of martyrdom, Lupin perishes during the Battle of Hogwarts at the hands of the Death Eater, Antonin Dolohov.

Core: Thestral Hair

Grindelwald uses the Elder Wand in Fantastic Beasts Crimes Of Grindelwald

Since the only wand known to contain a Thestral hair is the Elder wand out of the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, there aren’t a lot of specifics available regarding the substance or its properties. It makes sense that mythology describes it as an invention of Death because only people who have experienced the act would be able to visualize a Thestral.

In fact, it cannot be confirmed how this being’s hair is responsible for the most powerful wand in existence, because the only people shown to fully manipulate it are Dumbledore, Grindelwald, and Voldemort, each of whom have been capable of magnificent magics without needing the Elder wand.

Wood: Elder

Dumbledore extracts his memories with the Elder Wand in Harry Potter

The power of this wood is such that the Elder wand is literally named after it. Only the greatest of wizards are able to wield this wand at full strength, and even then it would immediately shift allegiance to any opponent who displays a greater magical prowess compared with its owner.

It has had a bloody history, starting with Antioch Peverell and ending with his distant descendant, Harry Potter (who restores the wand in Dumbledore’s tomb in the books, and destroys it in the movies.) Interestingly, the Elder tree is claimed to either attract or repel witchcraft, depending on different versions of folklore.

Hollow Wand

Jacob thanks Dumbledore for the wand.

By far one of the most different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, the hollow wand has no core at all. Rather, the hollow wand is a fake wand made out of snakewood and gifted to Jacob Kowalski in Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore. Since the wand contains no magical core, and its user was a muggle, it has no express magical properties.

The hollow wand was commissioned by Dumbledore himself sometime prior to 1932 with the purpose of helping muggle Jacob Kowalski blend in as the titular group often found themselves amongst wizards during Secrets of Dumbledore. At the end of the film, Jacob asked Albus if he could maintain ownership of the snakewood wand as a keepsake. Out of all the different Harry Potter ​​​​​​​wands, the hollow wand is the only wand to probably ever be held by a muggle.


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