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Blackthorn (bionomial name Prunus spinosa), also known as sloe, is a species of Prunus, a deciduous large shrub or small tree.[1]

Wandlore

Blackthorn, which was a very unusual wand wood, had the reputation — in Garrick Ollivander's opinion well-merited — of being best suited to a warrior. This does not necessarily mean that its owner practised the Dark Arts (although it is undeniable that those who did so will enjoy the blackthorn wand's prodigious power); one found blackthorn wands among the Aurors as well as among the denizens of Azkaban and Death Eaters.[2]

It was a curious feature of the blackthorn bush, which sported wicked thorns, that it produced its sweetest berries after the hardest frosts, and the wands made from this wood appeared to need to pass through danger or hardship with their owners to become truly bonded. Given this condition, the blackthorn wand would become as loyal and faithful a servant as one could wish.[2]

Known users

Etymology

The word "sloe" comes from Old English slāh. The same word is noted in Middle Low German, historically spoken in Lower Saxony, Middle Dutch "sleuuwe" or, contracted form, "slē", from which come Modern Low German words: "slē", "slī", and Modern Dutch "slee", Old High German "slēha", "slēwa", from which come Modern German "Schlehe" and Danish "slåen".[1]

Behind the scenes

  • Blackthorn and its association with warriors is a likely reference to the shillelagh, a walking stick and club that was originally used for settling disputes in a gentlemanly manner — like a duel with pistols or swords. Modern practitioners of bataireacht (forms of stick-fighting from Ireland) study the use of the shillelagh for self-defense and as a martial art. In modern usage, it is recognised as a symbol of Irishness.
  • The choice of Jacob's sibling's first wand is determined by the player's answer to Ollivander's question of how they felt about their brother's expulsion and subsequent disappearance. If they reply they are angry, Ollivander will give them a blackthorn wand with a unicorn hair core.[3]

Appearances

Notes and references

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