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"After much experimentation and research, I concluded that only three substances produce wands of the quality to which I am happy to give the illustrious name of Ollivander: unicorn hair, dragon heartstring and phoenix feather. "
— The three main core types used by Ollivander[src]

Phoenix feathers were feathers shed by phoenixes, primarily gathered and used in wandmaking.[1] Phoenix feather was one of the three supreme core types. It was one of the rarest cores, with the greatest power range and whose allegiance is hard won.[6]


PAS Phoenix feather

A phoenix feather

This was one of the rarest core types.[6] Phoenix feathers were capable of the greatest range of magic, though they may have taken longer than either unicorn hair or dragon heartstring cores to reveal this. They showed the most initiative, sometimes acting of their own accord, a quality that many witches and wizards disliked.[6]

Phoenix feather wands were always the pickiest when it comes to potential owners, for the creature from which they are taken was one of the most independent and detached in the world. These wands were the hardest to tame and to personalise, and their allegiance was usually hard won.[6]

Known users[]

In Ollivanders wand shop, the owner Garrick Ollivander was known to use phoenix feathers as one of his three cores, the others being dragon heartstring and unicorn hair. Phoenix feather was the least used core type in his shop.[1]

Known wands[]

"I remember every wand I’ve ever sold, Mr Potter. Every single wand. It so happens that the phoenix whose tail feather is in your wand, gave another feather — just one other. It is very curious indeed that you should be destined for this wand when its brother — why, its brother gave you that scar."
— Garrick Ollivander regarding Harry Potter's wand[src]

Harry Potter's phoenix feather wand

Lord Voldemort's wand

Lord Voldemort's phoenix feather wand

Harry Potter's and Tom Riddle's wand cores came from the same phoenix: Fawkes, who belonged to Albus Dumbledore. This similarity between the two wands means that they are brothers. Therefore, they have a certain connection and may produce unusual magical effects when forced to duel one another. This rare magical effect is a phenomenon known as Priori Incantatem or the Reverse Spell effect.[2]

Tom Riddle, better known as Lord Voldemort, kidnapped the wandmaker Ollivander for information on this situation and how to overcome it. Ollivander told him that a different wand may work against Harry;[7] however, Harry's wand destroyed the "borrowed" wand: in 1997, Lord Voldemort chased Harry during his escape from 4 Privet Drive and tried to murder him with Lucius Malfoy's wand — Harry's stronger wand completely destroyed the borrowed wand.[8]

Before Harry acquiring his holly and phoenix feather wand in 1991, Ollivander had showed another wand of phoenix feather. This wand was made of maple and was not the right fit for Harry.[1]

Professor Silvanus Kettleburn, who taught Care of Magical Creatures at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, had a wand that contained a phoenix feather core.[3]

The Dark wizard cabal "R" got a blackthorn and phoenix feather wand to complete mind-enhancing potion.

Famous wizarding singer Celestina Warbeck also possessed a phoenix feather wand.[4] Daniel Page also possessed a phoenix feather wand.[5]

Known donors[]

The only phoenix known to have donated his feathers to make a wand was Fawkes, Albus Dumbledore's domesticated bird. He only gave two feathers. The first feather resides in Harry Potter's wand and the other resides in Tom Riddle's wand.[1]

There was at least one other phoenix who donated its feather to Ollivander as shown in the maple wand that was shown to Harry in 1991. Who this phoenix was and how its feather was attained is unknown.[1]

It is possible that there are more phoenixes that have also donated feathers, as Silvanus Kettleburn's wand, Celestina Warbeck's wand contained Phoenix feather cores. Jacob's sibling's second wand may have contained a phoenix feather core. Who these phoenixes were and how their feathers were attained is unknown.

Other uses[]


Feather used as a writing tool by Albus Dumbledore

In the 1992–1993 school year, one feather was standing in an ink pot on Albus Dumbledore's desk, indicating that he was using it for writing.[9]

In the 1995–1996 school year, Fawkes left his feathers behind in bursts of flame as messages and warnings for the members of the Order of the Phoenix.[10]

Phoenix feathers could also be used as food additives, along with Basilisk tongues, as Honeydukes Liquorice Wands were said to be free from them.[11]

Behind the scenes[]

  • Harry Potter series author J. K. Rowling, if given the choice, would want the core of her own wand to be a phoenix feather, which was the reason why she gave Harry this core.[12]
  • In Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, after Patricia Rakepick destroyed Jacob' sibling previous wand, she and Jacob's sibling went to Ollivanders to buy a new wand. Garrick Ollivander presented Jacob's sibling with three wands, and explained the qualities of each one. If Jacob' sibling replies they are most drawn to loyalty and questing for glory, Ollivander will them a wand made of Laurel with a Phoenix feather core. It is twelve inches long.


Notes and references[]

See also[]