At least some content in this article is derived from information featured in Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. Spoilers will be present within the article.
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The topic of this article is of a real-life subject that has been mentioned "in-universe" in a canon source. The Harry Potter Wiki is written from the perspective that all information presented in canon is true (e.g., Hogwarts really existed), and, as such, details contained in this article may differ from real world facts.
Rowan (genus Sorbus) also known as mountain ash is a genus of shrubs and small trees of family Rosaceae. They are native throughout the cool temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere, with the highest species diversity in the mountains of western China and the Himalaya, where numerous apomictic microspecies occur.
Rowan was also noted for its believed disassociation with the Dark Arts. Ollivander, who had a nearly photographic memory when it came to the wands he had sold, could not recall a single instance of a wizard he had sold a rowan wand to ever becoming evil or turning to the Dark Arts. Perhaps for these reasons, rowan had become associated with pure-hearted wizards, though Ollivander noted that rowan wands could also match or even outperform others in duels.
The name "rowan" is derived from the Old Norse name for the tree, raun. Linguists believe that the Norse name is ultimately derived from a proto-Germanic word raudnian meaning "getting red" and which referred to the red foliage and red berries in the autumn. Rowan is one of the familiar wild trees in the British Isles, and has acquired numerous English folk names.
The following are recorded folk names for the rowan: Delight of the eye (Luisliu), Mountain ash, Quickbane, Quickbeam, Quicken (tree), Quickenbeam, Ran tree, Roan tree, Roden-quicken, Roden-quicken-royan, Round wood, Round tree, Royne tree, Rune tree, Sorb apple, Thor's helper, Whispering tree, Whitty, Wicken-tree, Wiggin, Wiggy, Wiky, Witch wood, Witchbane, Witchen, Witchen Wittern tree. Many of these can be easily linked to the mythology and folklore surrounding the tree. In Gaelic, it is caorann, or rudha-an ("red one", pronounced similarly to English "rowan").
Behind the scenes
Eureopean rowan has a long tradition in European mythology and folklore, and is said to be quite powerful in warding off evil and giving protection against malevolent beings. In Victorian folklore, rowan was believed to be have apotropaic powers, particularly in warding off witches. "Flying rowan", rowan grown as a epiphyte on another tree, was thought to have particularly potent powers against dark magic
- The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (First appearance)
- The Tales of Beedle the Bard (Mentioned only)
- Wizarding World
- Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery (Mentioned only)