I know that

"The wand chooses the wizard. That much has always been clear to those of us who have studied wandlore..."

This said, accidents happens and Ron got a new wand after his was broken. He may not have been the brightest of wizards but his abilities do not seem to have worsened after the change.

At the same time, it looks like loosing your wand seems to be catastrophic to wizards. Mr Malfoy was not keen on giving his to Voldemort, even though he could have bought another one (or have had one made specifically for him).

If wands would be so unique (in the sense that only one is good for you, except the Elder wand) then wand accidents would be such a disaster that wizards would probably take care more of them than just tugging them in a sleeve.

Is it just that you have one unique chance to get the right wand (and since there are many wand-maker this seems unlikely) and then possibly replace it with a sub-par one, or is there another explanation?

  • 6
    Wands are necessary to do magic for most wizards. Because they're crappy wizards and don't bother training for wandless spellcasting. But Ron's example in particular is egregious; he had a hand-me-down wand, not a wand that chose him, and so his replacement should work far better for him.
    – user40790
    May 1, 2017 at 16:52
  • 7
    Do you feel comfortable letting complete strangers drive your car or use your PC? May 1, 2017 at 16:54
  • 3
    @DVK-on-Ahch-To: no, but if my lovely car is broken then I can buy another lovely car (maybe better than the other one, bought with a different dealer). Also, when a thug wants the keys I will give them to him, and will be able to buy another car later (again, maybe even a better one)
    – WoJ
    May 1, 2017 at 16:58
  • 11
    Wands are semi-sentient, so losing your wand is like losing your dog. Plus, the longer you have the same wand, the closer the relationship becomes, which might be why Ron got over losing his at 12 but Harry at 17 is much more affected by losing his wand. May 1, 2017 at 16:59
  • 3
    @DVK-on-Ahch-To - Medicalert "Delete my Wand Browser history..." bracelets would be all the rage...
    – Valorum
    May 1, 2017 at 22:58

2 Answers 2


First of all: Except probably the Elder wand there is no better or worse wand in the Potter universe.

Wands are just used to channel the magic of the wizard. BUT: Every wand has its own specific properties and they match the character / abilities of the wizard it chooses.

So for each and every single wizard there is one wand that matches best. This wand chooses him and from that time on it works best for this specific wizard.

As stated in this answer after getting his wand the wizard learns from it and the wand learns from him.

"Oh yes, if you are any wizard at all you will be able to channel your magic through almost any instrument. The best results, however, must come where there is strongest affinity between wizard and wand. The connections are complex. An initial attraction, and then a mutual quest for experience, the wand learning from the wizard, the wizard from the wand."

Deathly Hallows - Pages 493 - 494 - US Hardcover

That said it is a bit like losing a good friend when your wand is taken away or broken.

In addition a wizard basically is not much more than a muggle without his wand: Not much magic is possible without a wand (unless you are a very experienced wizard, only some are able to perform wandless magic).

It is not that there are shops for wands at every corner (no Wand-To-Go in every town).
And there is only one known wand maker for whole Britain (Ollivander) in the books and without a wand it is even hard to get to his shop to get a new wand.

This fact alone should be enough to answer your question.

But as I reread your question I see, that what you really want to know is the opposite of the title of your question: Your last paragraph seems to suggest that wizards don't care enough for their wands taking into consideration how important they are to them.

For this question I just can say, that wands are strong magical artefacts and don't seem to break that easily. The only instances were we see an accidental destruction of a wand is the one of Ron and the one of Harry, and there are only two mentions of a wand broken deliberately (Hagrid's when he is expelled from Hogwarts and Lucius Malfoy's when Harry's wand destroys it).

So it seems that this simply doesn't happen often as wands might protect themselves from breakage in some way and that therefore wizards don't think about wand destruction.

  • 4
    To this, I would add that the wand that each witch or wizard gets is simply the wand in Ollivander's shop that matches them best. That doesn't mean there can't be others nearly as good, or that another, perhaps even better, one couldn't be made at a later date, or even that there might not be better wands from other wandmakers. In other words, there is no "the/my" wand, just degrees of affinity.
    – Adamant
    May 2, 2017 at 7:37
  • @Adamant: thank you for better phrasing what I wanted to convey in some comments.
    – WoJ
    May 2, 2017 at 8:20

A wizard's wand is his/her identity. It's their key to the Wizarding World. Just the same way as house elves are in awe of wizards' wands, wizards feel that it defines them as being a wizard; separating them from other beings.

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