The Deathstick. The Wand the Destiny. The legendary object you know from the original collection and have actually surely spotted in virtually every tease because that the brand-new film. What is it? Why go it matter for ‘Fantastic Beasts’? and what could it call us around the Dumbledore-Grindelwald relationship?


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Alycea Tinoyan
for a complete year, ever because the Fantastic Beasts movie series’s official Twitter account exit an enticing photograph of two wands next by side, we’ve well-known that the fabled Elder Wand would play a central role in The crime of Grindelwald, the second film in a planned five-part franchise.

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Wands at the ready. On 11.16.18 the #FantasticBeasts story continues. Check back tomorrow for much more #MagicInProgress. #WizardingWednesdays pic.twitter.com/FLxxfXP1Am

— an excellent Beasts (

So with the sequel come 2016’s Fantastic Beasts and also Where to uncover Them Apparating into theaters later on this week, that time to dive right into the Potterverse’s Pensieve to consult every little thing we know around the Elder Wand, wandlore, and the carry of magical power. From the trailer teases to the marketing initiatives to the fact that the wand notably did not show up in the very first Beasts film, every signs point to the Elder Wand gaining importance in the follow-up. Let’s go on a journey by examining seven questions around the wand and its possible role in the film. (Because seven, of course, is the many powerfully magical number.)

1. What is the Elder Wand?

Also referred to as the Deathstick and Wand of Destiny, the Elder Wand is an object of tremendous magical power. Some consider it unbeatable, some merely the most potent method of channeling magic in existence, however either way, it has blazed a long and also bloody trail v wizarding history. In addition, the Elder Wand is among the three Deathly Hallows that offered the seventh Harry Potter book its title. The possessor of all three Hallows—the wand, the Resurrection Stone, and the coat of Invisibility—is said to master death.


2. Exactly how was it made?

According to the legend related in The tales of Beedle the Bard, the Elder Wand was a gift from death to Antioch Peverell, the oldest of the 3 brothers who influenced “The tale of the three Brothers.” follow to the musings that Albus Dumbledore, longtime possessor the the wand, though, it—like the other two Hallows—was much more likely the creation of a talented wizard through talented siblings, whose creations influenced spurious mythmaking.


The “elder” in Elder Wand doesn’t refer to its age however rather to the wood from i m sorry it was crafted; this is the rarest kind used to make a wand and, follow to J.K. Rowling, “scorns to stay with any kind of owner who is not the exceptional of his or her company; it takes a exceptional wizard to save the elder wand for any kind of length the time.” it is true that the Elder Wand, certainly, and writing in the voice that wandmaker Garrick Ollivander, Rowling adds, “Only a highly unusual human being will discover their perfect complement in elder, and also on the rare occasion once such a pairing occurs, ns take the as details that the witch or sorcerer’s in inquiry is significant out because that a special destiny.”

Inside the 15-inch-long elder covering is a core made indigenous the tail hair of a Thestral, i m sorry is a similarly rare wand product that “can be mastered only by a witch or wizard capable of dealing with death.” Thestrals room the winged reptilian steeds Harry and also friends usage on their rescue mission in Order that the Phoenix; they fit v Hallows lore due to the fact that the only people who can see Thestrals have actually themselves saw death and also gained an emotional knowledge of the experience. Together her initial collection progressed, Rowling when said, she flourished surprised nobody ever asked she what wonder material developed the main point of Dumbledore’s wand. The seventh book showed why that question mattered.

3. What is its property history?

Antioch didn’t host the wand because that long. According to Beedle’s legend, the eldest brother’s first step v his new weapon was to challenge a competitor wizard to a duel. That won, of course, and “boasted loudly of the powerful wand made him invincible”—which, simply as naturally, confirmed to be the last hubristic claim he’d make.

“That very night,” the story continues, “another wizard crept upon the earliest brother together he lay, wine-sodden, upon his bed. The thief take it the wand and, for good measure, slit the oldest brother’s throat.”

Between that initial theft and also the at an early stage 20th century, when Beasts takes place, the wand traced a more staccato path, with quieter durations punctuated by according to bursts. As Ollivander tells Harry in the middle of Deathly Hallows, “It is perfectly possible to trace the wand’s course with history. There space gaps, of course, and long ones, whereby it vanishes from view, temporarily lost or hidden; but always it resurfaces.”

The wizards who sought and also then own the wand for a time were the kinds of wizards one would suppose to desire an all-powerful wand, v names choose Emeric the Evil and also Egbert the Egregious and Barnabas Deverill. (Like George R.R. Martin, Rowling has a way with fantastic fictional names.) Notably, no witch is ever before known to have actually possessed the wand, about which Rowling writes (in the voice that Dumbledore), “Make of the what friend will.”

4. Just how does the wand interact with that is master?

Before concentrating on the connection the Elder Wand specifically forges v its possessor, stop think around wandlore more broadly. Rowling has explained wands together “quasi-sentient” and “not exactly animate however … close come it.” Wands choose their wizards, that course—that lot we find out as early on as Harry’s trip to Ollivander’s shop in Sorcerer’s Stone.

But this connection goes much more than a mere early stage connection. Ollivander later tells Harry that wandworking is “a shared quest because that experience, the wand finding out from the wizard, the wizard indigenous the wand,” and in Beedle, Rowling write (again in Dumbledore’s voice), “Those who space knowledgeable about wandlore will certainly agree that wands do certainly absorb the expertise of those who use them, though this is an unpredictable and imperfect business.”

Indeed, in the “King’s Cross” chapter in Deathly Hallows, Dumbledore theorizes that when Harry’s and also Voldemort’s streams crossed in Goblet of Fire many thanks to the Priori Incantatem phenomenon, harry wand “imbibed few of the power and qualities the Voldemort’s wand.” Dumbledore walk on come speculate that Harry’s wand from then on “recognized” Voldemort and also “regurgitated several of his own magic versus him.” an alert those verbs: recognized and regurgitated. Dumbledore ascribes energetic thought and also decision-making to harry wand, and also even despite this particular connection results from a specific and distinctive interpersonal relationship, it’s emblematic the a broader pattern the wand-wizard relationships.

The Elder Wand, Rowling common in a tweet earlier this year, is “more sentient than any type of other.” This singularity gives the wand strength even past its formidable reputation. Rowling writes (again in Dumbledore’s voice) that a wand that has passed through the manage of so numerous dark wizards end so many years would both own “a marked affinity for the most dangerous kinds of magic” and “accumulate wisdom, strength and also power far past the ordinary.”

The wand for this reason becomes “almost one instructor” to subsequent masters. One possessor that the Deathstick, a wizard named Godelot, created a guidebook come dark magic and also dangerous spells called Magick Moste Evile and attributed lot of his discovering to his “moste wicked and also subtle friend”—yet an additional instance the the Elder Wand’s personification. Paradoxically, the one possessor that this possibly dangerous weapon who we understand maintained mastery for a while was Dumbledore, yet as he speak Harry in “King’s Cross,” “I was allowed to tame and to usage it, because I took it, no for gain, yet to conserve others indigenous it.” Boasting inspires challengers, and also dark magic begets much more dark magic, however at least with this one Hallow, Dumbledore was sufficiently wise to spurn that tempting call.

5. Just how does the wand adjust owners?

Broadly speaking, any type of wand is ripe because that the soaking up a duel. As Ollivander summarizes because that Harry in Hallows, “The way of taking matters. Much additionally depends ~ above the wand itself. In general, however, wherein a wand has actually been won, the allegiance will change.”

Yet while part thinking, feeling, quasi-sentient wands weigh different factors when determining your master, the Elder Wand to know what that wants. Rowling said in a 2007 PotterCast interview, “The Elder Wand to know no loyalty except to strength. So it’s totally unsentimental. It will only go whereby the power is.”

She then added vital clarifying line around one’s presumption of ownership of the Elder Wand: “You don’t should kill with it.”

This mindset parallels that of Ollivander, that tells take care of (italics in the original), “Whether that needs to happen by murder, I carry out not know. Its history is bloody, but that might be simply as result of the fact that it is together a preferable object, and arouses such passions in wizards.”

This nuance was shed on mr Voldemort, who wrongly assumed Severus Snape held the Elder Wand due to the fact that he was Dumbledore’s killer, once in reality Draco had disarmed Dumbledore prior to Snape arrived on the scene, making Malfoy the wand’s true new owner. However Voldemort’s absence of interest in the intricacies and beauty of wandlore was a persistent flaw; he only ever connected wands to power, thinking of them together weapons rather than tools, and thus missed out on a wide range of knowledge. This failure to know culminated in his downfall in the good Hall, killed by his very own backfiring curse together he do the efforts to use the Elder Wand come smite that is true master.

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6. What might happen v the wand in The crimes of Grindelwald?

Maybe Grindelwald will certainly commit crimes v the wand!

Actually, we don’t recognize if Grindelwald even possesses the Elder Wand in ~ this point. The a curious timeline. Native the original series, we recognize that Grindelwald had acquired the wand by the time of the first Beasts movie—in Hallows, we see him take it it together a “young man with golden hair”—but as he embodies the persona the Percival tombs in the very first Beasts film, the wields a different wand.

Still, in the movie’s climax, Newt records Grindelwald and Tina uses the Accio assignment to take possession the his wand. Does among them thus end up being master of the Elder Wand? If so, i beg your pardon one? Here, together Dumbledore claims in Half-Blood Prince, us leave the firm foundation of fact and journey rather into thickets the wildest guesswork.