A Brief History of Magic Wands.

Wizards, sorcerers, witches, sorcerers and fairies all know that they need wands to enhance their magical powers. These elongated hand-held devices were believed to be the source of magic, or at least acted as a distraction from the magic tricks. While it may be tempting to believe that JK Rowling was the inventor of the cane, the truth is that the cane has a long and varied history. Let’s take a quick look at the history of wands.

a greek invention

Apparently, the staff was first mentioned in writing by the Greek writer Homer, appearing in his works The Iliad and The Odyssey. In the Iliad he writes that the magic wand, which he called her wand, was the tool used by the god Hermes to put her to sleep and reawaken her. In The Odyssey, Homer writes that the goddess Athena turned Odysseus into an old man with her staff, and rejuvenated him with one swing of her staff. Later in the Odyssey, the goddess Circe also uses a magic wand. She uses the device to turn Odysseus’ men into pigs.

A medieval book of magic

There are also references to wands in a 13th-century Latin spellbook, or magic textbook titled “The Book of Oaths of Honorius.” The book mentions two types of his wands: magic wands and wands. The cane should be smaller and thinner and made of hazel or other walnut wood, as described in the book. And then he got even more specific, adding that the branch must be a virgin tree, a newly grown tree. It too was to be felled from the tree with a single blow, which was to be done at sunrise on Wednesday. Only then will the wand become powerful.

magic tools

French occultist Eliphas Levi wrote about various magical instruments in his 1862 book Philosophy of the Occult. In addition to magic wands, it also contained magic swords, magic cups, hexagrams, and pentagrams. He also claims to be a translation of an ancient Hebrew work, later proved to be false, which contains a passage praising the use of the lotus staff.

The Magic Wand in Ritual of Magic

Czech author and occultist Franz Bardon, a concentration camp survivor, wrote three manuals on ritual magic in the 1950s. This manual had a great influence among occultists and was considered his one of the best self-help spellbooks on the market. In these books, Bardon writes, “The most important tool in ritual magic is, and always will be, the wand.” Early 20th-century fantasy novels often used wands as tools to describe magical events and advance plots. His one of the most important examples of this is JRR Tolkien’s work, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. One of the main characters of these novels is a wizard named Gandalf. The name Gandalf comes from his 13th-century Scandinavian work, part of the Poetry Edda, which means “elven staff” in Old Norse.


Fantasy novels of the early 1900s often included the magic wand as a device to help explain magical occurrences and to help advance the plot along. One of the main examples of this are the works of JRR Tolkien –  The Hobbit  and  The Lord of the Rings  . One of the main characters in these novels is a wizard named Gandalf. The name Gandalf is taken from a 13th-century Scandinavian work that was part of the  Poetic Edda  and means “elven wand” in Old Norse. 

the wand of oz

L. Frank Baum’s 1900 children’s novel The Wizard of Oz, on which this classic film is based, shows that wands can be used for good or evil. Glinda the good witch uses her wand to help Dorothy from the moment they meet, and Glinda makes Dorothy wear ruby ​​red slippers on her feet.

the white witch

The wand is the most fearsome of the White Witch’s weapons in his seven-book novel series The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis, published in the 1950s. The White Witch uses this wand to turn people to stone and meet terrible fates.

disney wands

Disney’s fantasy movies have a lot of magic wands. From Mickey Mouse in Fantasia, to Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother, to The Little Mermaid’s sea witch Ursula, most magical characters are depicted with wands. We see this in Pinocchio, Peter Pan, The Black Cauldron, Sword and Stone, and The Princess and the Frog.

a magic wand

Wands were an integral part of the Harry Potter books and movies. In the novels, wands are described as channeling the spells cast by Hogwarts witches and wizards, helping to make spells more powerful. Wands are so important that characters can find themselves in difficult situations due to lost, stolen, or damaged wands.