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The Harry Potter Canon

"Those witches and wizards best suited to ash wands are not, in my experience, lightly swayed from their beliefs or purposes."
-- Mr. Ollivander (Pm)

"** THE FIREBOLT **
THIS STATE-OF-THE-ART PACING BROOM SPORTS A STREAM-LINED, SUPERFINE HANDLE OF ASH ..."
-- Advertisement in the window of Quality Quidditch Supplies, Diagon Alley (PA4)

A wand wood also used to make other magical objects.

  • Used to make brooms (QA9) and wands (Pm).
  • Harry's Firebolt is advertised as having a handle made of ash wood (PA4)
  • Ron's original wand he inherited from Charlie Weasley and later destroyed by crashing the Ford Anglia into the Whomping Willow (CS5), had a unicorn core and was made of ash wood, based on his birthday and the Celtic wand wood calendar (JKR).

    Some time after I had given Harry his holly-and-phoenix wand I came across a description of how the Celts had assigned trees to different parts of the year and discovered that, entirely by coincidence, I had assigned Harry the ‘correct’ wood for his day of birth. I therefore decided to give Ron and Hermione Celtic wand woods, too. Ron, who was born in the February 18 - March 17 period, was given an ash wand (I think I had originally marked him down for beech), and Hermione, who was born between September 2 and September 29, received a vine wood wand (I can’t remember what I originally stipulated for Hermione; possibly I had not specified a wood for her at that stage) (JKR).

  • Cedric Diggory's wand was ash, "twelve and a quarter inches. . . pleasantly springy" with a male unicorn tail hair. Mr. Ollivander tested it by sending "silver smoke rings" (GF18)
  • Ollivander writes much about wands made of ash. He states that "(t)he ash wand cleaves to its one true master and ought not to be passed on or gifted from the original owner, because it will lose power and skill." He also writes that ash wands have the reputation of being "stubborn", but that "(t)he ideal owner ... will certainly be courageous, but never crass or arrogant." WEB LINKRead more on Pottermore. (Pm)

Inconsistency: While the Firebolt is advertised with a handle made of ash in PA, on Pottermore it is described as having a handle of ebony wood. (Pm)

Commentary

Etymology

Old English æsc "ash tree," also meaning "spear"

Notes

In folklore, ash wood was thought to repel both fairies and snakes. source: Wikipedia

Ash trees are associated with lightning and the old English saying "Ash Courts Flash." Perhaps that was the inspiration for the Firebolt made with an ash handle. source: English Gardening

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