Since 1997, you’ve been coming to BarnesandNoble.com to discuss everything from Stephen King to writing to Harry Potter. You’ve made our site more than a place to discover your next book: you’ve made it a community. But like all things internet, BN.com is growing and changing. We've said goodbye to our community message boards—but that doesn’t mean we won’t still be a place for adventurous readers to connect and discover.

Now, you can explore the most exciting new titles (and remember the classics) at the Barnes & Noble Book Blog. Check out conversations with authors like Jeff VanderMeer and Gary Shteyngart at the B&N Review, and browse write-ups of the best in literary fiction. Come to our Facebook page to weigh in on what it means to be a book nerd. Browse digital deals on the NOOK blog, tweet about books with us,or self-publish your latest novella with NOOK Press. And for those of you looking for support for your NOOK, the NOOK Support Forums will still be here.

We will continue to provide you with books that make you turn pages well past midnight, discover new worlds, and reunite with old friends. And we hope that you’ll continue to tell us how you’re doing, what you’re reading, and what books mean to you.

Reply
Frequent Contributor
mrsRW
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎10-10-2008
0 Kudos

The wand and the wizard

The wand chooses the wizard.

I do not want to go into the complicated wand-owner, wand thing business. 

 

I just want to point out and stress that IMO, that the magic a wizard produces, is only as good as that wizard thinks he is. 

 

A lot of that wizards personality is infused into his own magic that the product appears to be a lot like the spell caster. 

I've already pointed this out before. See the difference: chairs. DD's chair always seem to be puffy, big, and comfortable. Which tells us that DD's personality and warm,and friendly; whereas, McG's chair, and straight, stiff, and wooden (Can I borrow wood for a moment?)  which exlains McG is the let's get to business no chitchat kind of person. what do you think? 

~*We'll do it all, everything, on our own. We don't need anything or anyone. I don't quite know how to say how I feel. Those three words are said too much. They're not enough. Let's waste time. I need your grace to remind me to find my own.*~
Correspondent
Stewies_Mom
Posts: 140
Registered: ‎05-28-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

MrsRW,

 

I partially agree, but with one difference... I do not believe that the magic is simply a product of the belief of how good the wizard believes he is.  I think it is like anything else, there are always individuals better and individuals worse ant any given "thing".  Some people are naturally better at something, and I think wizarding ability would be no different.

 

I really like your example using the chair.  However, I feel it is a matter of formality of the given examples.  Minerva McGonagall is a thoroughly formal person, so I suppose her chair would have the sitting person be upright and in a formal seated position, whereas Albus Dumbledore was not nearly as formal, and his squashy and very comfy armchair leads me to believe that he would invite a sitting person to be as comfortable as he can make them.

 

Additionally, I enjoyed your reference to Wood.  Personally, I've always loved that scene.  I can completely sympathize with Harry when he heard Prof. McGonagall asking to borrow Wood!

Inspired Bibliophile
Psychee
Posts: 7,307
Registered: ‎04-17-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I think that self-confidence plays an important part in how well one's magic is performed.  Proof of this comes from McGonagall, when she told Neville that there was nothing wrong with his spellcasting, he just lacked confidence.

 

I often think of wands as being like children.  If a parent confidently and clearly instructs his child to do something, he is more likely to do it immediately and well than if the parent garbles her words, isn't brief and clear, and does not sound authoritative.  If the child does well, the parent gains confidence in her parenting style; but if the child seems to ignore her, she just gets frustrated.  It seems to be the same with the wands, with the wand responding to the wizard and the wizard getting some kind of magical feedback from the wand, building up bonds.

 

But confidence isn't everything.  Some wands are better than others for certain kinds of spells.  Perhaps the motion of some spells comes through better with different kinds of woods -- rigid versus flexible, for instance.  And perhaps the cores of the different wands take to some kinds of magic better than others. 

 

And then there is the wizard's inate abilities -- I assume that each wizard is born with strengths and weaknesses.

 

Second-hand wands present other problems -- probably much like a teenager accepting or rejecting a step-parent. 

Distinguished Correspondent
Mollywobbles
Posts: 2,931
Registered: ‎06-15-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I remember talking about these chairs before MrsRW!  I think that Dumbledore conjured comfy chintz chairs because he chose to do so, and that Minerva conjured hard-backed wood chairs because she chose to.  I'm sure she could have whipped up a chintz chair if she had wanted to, but the circumstances called for something a little more austere.

 

I still think that the reason Dumbledore conjured comfy chintz chairs at Harry's hearing was deliberate, he could have conjured anything he wanted to.  Harry was being tried by the full Wizengamot court, the surroundings were formal, not to say intimidating in the extreme, and so Dumbledore decides to whip up a nice squashy chair to make Harry feel a little less threatened.  It was also kind of an "in your face" statement to the court.

 

I do agree in general though with your feeling that the wand will reflect, to a certain extent, the personality of the owner.  Much in the same way that the patronus is unique to the witch or wizard producing it.


mrsRW wrote:

The wand chooses the wizard.

I do not want to go into the complicated wand-owner, wand thing business. 

 

I just want to point out and stress that IMO, that the magic a wizard produces, is only as good as that wizard thinks he is. 

 

A lot of that wizards personality is infused into his own magic that the product appears to be a lot like the spell caster. 

I've already pointed this out before. See the difference: chairs. DD's chair always seem to be puffy, big, and comfortable. Which tells us that DD's personality and warm,and friendly; whereas, McG's chair, and straight, stiff, and wooden (Can I borrow wood for a moment?)  which exlains McG is the let's get to business no chitchat kind of person. what do you think? 


 

Distinguished Correspondent
Mollywobbles
Posts: 2,931
Registered: ‎06-15-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I think you're right about certain types of wands being better suited for certain things.  Somewhere (maybe way back in SS) don't we hear that Lily's wand was very flexible (or maybe whippy) and considered good for charm work?  I also liked the fact that Umbridge's wand was described, I believe, as remarkably stubby or something like that.  I got a kick out of the way Olivander was rather snippy about the wands owned by Krum and Fleur at the wand weighing before the Tri-Wiz.

 

It must have been irksome for people like the Malfoys that they had to go through the same rather common process of being chosen by a wand.  You'd think they would want to commission someone to produce a special wand, inlaid with mother of pearl or something.

 

You would also kind of think that if a particular wand is especially suited for, say ,charm work, that the witch or wizard it chose might have a more pronounced aptitude for that branch of magic. Maybe Neville had, in part, such a difficult time with spells and charms because his strength was really herbology which didn't seem to require much wand work. Agreed that McGonagall said his spellcasting only lacked self confidence, but he probably would never have been more than an average spellcaster if his inate ability was really in the field of herbology.  Circumstances and hard work in the DA made him go beyond what may have been his normal skill level.


Psychee wrote:

I think that self-confidence plays an important part in how well one's magic is performed.  Proof of this comes from McGonagall, when she told Neville that there was nothing wrong with his spellcasting, he just lacked confidence.

 

I often think of wands as being like children.  If a parent confidently and clearly instructs his child to do something, he is more likely to do it immediately and well than if the parent garbles her words, isn't brief and clear, and does not sound authoritative.  If the child does well, the parent gains confidence in her parenting style; but if the child seems to ignore her, she just gets frustrated.  It seems to be the same with the wands, with the wand responding to the wizard and the wizard getting some kind of magical feedback from the wand, building up bonds.

 

But confidence isn't everything.  Some wands are better than others for certain kinds of spells.  Perhaps the motion of some spells comes through better with different kinds of woods -- rigid versus flexible, for instance.  And perhaps the cores of the different wands take to some kinds of magic better than others. 

 

And then there is the wizard's inate abilities -- I assume that each wizard is born with strengths and weaknesses.

 

Second-hand wands present other problems -- probably much like a teenager accepting or rejecting a step-parent. 


 

Inspired Bibliophile
Psychee
Posts: 7,307
Registered: ‎04-17-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

Neville was also using his father's wand until he got a new one at the beginning of HBP, so he was at a disadvantage there.  I wonder why his grandmother didn't get him a new one early on;  I never had the impression that the family was financially challenged.  Perhaps she didn't know that wands should pick their wizards?

 


Mollywobbles wrote:

You would also kind of think that if a particular wand is especially suited for, say ,charm work, that the witch or wizard it chose might have a more pronounced aptitude for that branch of magic. Maybe Neville had, in part, such a difficult time with spells and charms because his strength was really herbology which didn't seem to require much wand work. Agreed that McGonagall said his spellcasting only lacked self confidence, but he probably would never have been more than an average spellcaster if his inate ability was really in the field of herbology.  Circumstances and hard work in the DA made him go beyond what may have been his normal skill level.


 

 
Distinguished Correspondent
Mollywobbles
Posts: 2,931
Registered: ‎06-15-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I wish Rowling would write a book on wands and wandlore, it would be fascinating!

 

One thing that always gave me a laugh was how the kids carried their wands around.  Most of them just seemed to stick them in their waist bands-it must have been rather awkward and uncomfortable putting an 8-11 inch hunk of wood down your pants.  Then there was Moody who said that wizards lost buttocks by sticking wands in their back pockets-and Luna who stuck her wand behind her ear!  I did kind of like the way the COS film depicted Lucius Malfoy carrying his wand in a sheath or scabbard, like a sword.

 

 

Distinguished Correspondent
Mollywobbles
Posts: 2,931
Registered: ‎06-15-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I didn't get the impression they were in financial straits either. I can think of two possible explanations.  First, the Longbottom family was worried that Neville was a squib, perhaps they didn't think buying a new wand was worth it.  Second, Gran Longbottom was always going on about Neville living up to his parents reputations-perhaps she felt Neville having his dad's wand would inspire him.  Or, perhaps she though it fitting that Neville use his dad's wand-a bit of an inheritance.
Correspondent
Stewies_Mom
Posts: 140
Registered: ‎05-28-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

Psychee,  I thnk Mrs. Longbottom was a no-nonsense witch who, because of her generation, would have thought it wasteful to pay for a new wand when there was a perfectly good wand to be handed down.  I don't remember exactly, but didn't his uncle Algy (sp?) give him his toad?  Wasn't this toad a hand-me-down, too?  Perhaps the Longbottom family philosophy was "Waste Not, Want Not".   In that same vein, I doubt that such a headstrong witch would have cared that the wand chooses the wizard; that would have hardly qualified for being wasteful by replacing a wand that was perfectly fine.

 

I have also thought, when considering her feelings toward her grandson, that Gran Longbottom may have wanted him to have his fathers' wand in an attempt to invoke some of his fathers' talent and bravery into Neville.  She did seem to have an opinion that he somehow lacked in magical abilities, even though we are shown that he just needed confidence, which he progressively gains through the series.  She always seemed so disappointed in Neville, until DH, where when asking about Neville's whereabouts, and hearing that he is fighting, she replies "Naturally" in a proud tone of voice.  Maybe she finally realized that Neville was a grandson to be proud of.


Psychee wrote:

Neville was also using his father's wand until he got a new one at the beginning of HBP, so he was at a disadvantage there.  I wonder why his grandmother didn't get him a new one early on;  I never had the impression that the family was financially challenged.  Perhaps she didn't know that wands should pick their wizards?

 

Frequent Contributor
mrsRW
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎10-10-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

[ Edited ]

Whoa Wobbles, you are on a ROLL!! LOL, I love all of your posts and agree in general.

I noticed this because of people like: 

 

Lockhart: who--IMO who is impossibly arrogant who's main expertise is the memory-removal jinx (what is it called again?). He lived of other people's greatness and bravery and got all the credit for a lot of things he never did. He can't even perform 2nd year level defensive spells! But he probably really is good with the said jinx because he got away with it and published books about these quests.  SO! My point is, the only thing Lockhart knows is to cheat and get away with it, therefore, he's confident he can perform this spell. 

 

WILLPOWER.

 

Bellatrix, also got my attention about wands wands and spellcasting when Harry tried  to cast a Cruciatus Curse on her, which Im sure all of you will remember, and need to remind me of her exact words.. "You need to realy mean it.." and she mentioned that to try casting this curse when you're just plain angry wouldn't do the trick.

 

"Then there was Moody who said that wizards lost buttocks by sticking wands in their back pockets-and Luna who stuck her wand behind her ear!  I did kind of like the way the COS film depicted Lucius Malfoy carrying his wand in a sheath or scabbard, like a sword."--M.Wobbles

 

 I remember this!! Book 7 the 7 Potters. Count on Moody to overreact on simple stuff like that. He's the veteran in the group, which makes his behavior expected , not to mention funny. And we're talking a lot about Gran Longbottom, yes I completely agree wands also can be like a child accepting a second parent. it's like Harry not being able to perform a simple Engorgement Charm on the spider properly.. Do you guys ever experienced this:  A black ball-point pen of yours mixed with 10 more black pens similar to the one you own. Mix them up and you'd still know which pen is yours. 

I did. I don't know, i just remember how my pen feels in my hand. I think that's also how it is with wands. 

 

Gran Longbottom is the kind of parent 'who never would really teach you how to do it, you just need to do it.' She always loved Neville, and she's a proud woman. I think she's just not good with words and things that would make her really express how she feels...

 

Can you guys enumerate HP characters and they Spell-Specialty? 

Message Edited by mrsRW on 06-21-2009 06:32 AM
~*We'll do it all, everything, on our own. We don't need anything or anyone. I don't quite know how to say how I feel. Those three words are said too much. They're not enough. Let's waste time. I need your grace to remind me to find my own.*~
Frequent Contributor
mrs_brightside
Posts: 79
Registered: ‎06-21-2009
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

 "I didn't get the impression they were in financial straits either. I can think of two possible explanations.  First, the Longbottom family was worried that Neville was a squib, perhaps they didn't think buying a new wand was worth it.  Second, Gran Longbottom was always going on about Neville living up to his parents reputations-perhaps she felt Neville having his dad's wand would inspire him.  Or, perhaps she though it fitting that Neville use his dad's wand-a bit of an inheritance."

 

I always thought that Gran Longbottom was a troubled character. I mean, her son and daughter-in-law were driven to insanity by the Death Eaters, and she was left to take care of their son. Not that she didn't want to take care of Neville, but he was a constant reminder of the suffering that Frank and Alice went through. And so, Gran thought Neville wasn't exactly an expert wizard, so she thought that by giving him the father's wand, he might do better, but it turned out that he did worse because of it.

"love is handing someone a gun, and letting it point to your head, believing that he won't pull the trigger."

oliver wood: he's a keeper :smileywink:

make love, not horcruxes.
Correspondent
Stewies_Mom
Posts: 140
Registered: ‎05-28-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I'd need to go back through each book for references to each type of wand (Mr. Olivander mentions many different types of wands and what each one is especially good for) and then review which character uses which wand and try to place what types of spells they might be best at.  Seems kind of daunting when I think about it.  But, its an interesting idea...

Frequent Contributor
mrsRW
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎10-10-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The wand and the wizard

I think there are people like DD and McG, who are confident that any wand is a good wand if you know how to use it, to 'make friends' with it. It's like what McG said to neville, he just lacks a lot of confidence in the beginning. But look at Nevile in book 7! He's fantastic! He got inspired finally to stand up and not let anyone treat him badly. I think it's more 'it's all in the mind ' when it comes to wands. Doesnt mean, Ollivander says the wand chooses the wizard means its necessarily true. It's his opinion, and I think it's partly true too, but when your more focused more on the results than minding if you're using your own wand especially in a difficult situation, the 'wand choosing the wizard 'theory doesnt apply much when the wand is 'forced.

 

have a biscuit Potter.

~*We'll do it all, everything, on our own. We don't need anything or anyone. I don't quite know how to say how I feel. Those three words are said too much. They're not enough. Let's waste time. I need your grace to remind me to find my own.*~