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1. a thin rod carried as a symbol of authority
2. a rod used by a magician, water diviner, etc.
3. Informal a conductor's baton
4. Archery a marker used to show the distance at which the archer stands from the target
5. a hand-held electronic device, such as a light pen or bar-code reader, which is pointed at or passed over an item to read the data stored there


(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

A wand is magical tool used in Ceremonial Magic and in many traditions of Wicca. Associated with both air and fire, a wand may be used in much the same way as an athamé, directing power for consecrating a ritual Circle, for example. In many Witchcraft traditions it is used for "Drawing Down the Moon"—invoking the goddess to descend into the body of the High Priestess.

The royal sceptre, a symbol of power, is derived from the magic wand. The caduceus of the Greek god Hermes was a wand. Coins found at Cydonia dating from 250 to 267 BCE, show a nude Hermes carrying a wand. A Roman ambassador would always have a wand or staff with him when visiting a foreign country. If he drew a circle around himself with the staff, then that designated the area sacred to him and he was considered safe from attack within it.

As a symbol of power and virility, the wand is recognized as a phallic symbol. Some wands are actually carved with the likeness of a phallus at the tip, others with a pine cone, a frequent representation of the phallus. In magic the wand is a capacitor, storing energy raised in magical ritual, as well as a projector, sending out that energy when and where needed.

An anonymous fifteenth-century work, Errores Gazariorum, stated that a Witch receives a wand at the time of her initiation. In fact, in today's Wicca the Witch receives his or her personal athamé rather than a wand. Dr. John Fian of the Scottish witches belonging to the North Berwick coven stated that, while in jail, he was visited by the Devil, who carried a white wand. When Fian broke the wand, the Devil vanished.

In Ceremonial Magic, the various grimoires give a variety of recipes for constructing a wand. The choice of wood varies. It can be yew, rowan, ash, hawthorn, hazel, or willow. A wand's length also varies. Some grimoires say it must be the length of the magician's arm, measured from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger. Others say it must be exactly nineteen-and-a-half inches long, while others stipulate twenty-one inches. Most wands are straight, but some are not; the end may be forked or have a crystal set into it. Sometimes a symbol such as an ankh might be attached to the end. Many times the shaft is engraved with magical Words of Power and/or sigils.

The "rods" employed by Moses and Aaron, to divide the Red Sea and to cause water to gush from a rock, were magic wands. According to Eric Maple, Jewish legend has it that Aaron's rod originated with Adam in the Garden of Eden and was handed down through a long line of patriarchs. Maple also states that an early third-century portrait of Jesus shows him in a catacomb holding a wand.

Whatever the length and regardless of what wood it is made from, a wand is no good until it has been consecrated. This is what makes it special and also what ties it to the magician who will use it. Consecration usually involves sprinkling the instrument with salted water and holding it in the smoke of incense.

What does it mean when you dream about a wand?

A magic wand can represent a kind of power. It might also represent the male organ. Dreaming about a wand might be an allusion to the familiar expression about how one can’t solve a certain problem by “waving a magic wand” over it.


(computer science)
A hand-held device that contains an optical scanner to sense bar codes and other patterns and transmits the data to a computer.


A handheld optical reader used to read typewritten fonts, printed fonts, OCR fonts and barcodes. The wand is waved over each line of characters or codes in a single pass.

Handheld optical character readers, or wands, are increasingly being used to capture retail product information in point of sale applications.
References in classic literature ?
His despair at being so late bewildered him so entirely that he appeared in his natural form and attempted to sprinkle some black liquid over the bride and bridegroom, which was intended to kill them, but the Fairy stretched out her wand and the liquid dropped on the Magician himself.
She would gladly, at that moment, spend half her savings on refitting her house if some fairy wand could do it in a moment.
He took the wand with which he seals men's eyes in sleep or wakes them just as he pleases, and flew holding it in his hand over Pieria; then he swooped down through the firmament till he reached the level of the sea, whose waves he skimmed like a cormorant that flies fishing every hole and corner of the ocean, and drenching its thick plumage in the spray.
In the search which followed, the man of the cheery voice seemed to the youth to possess a wand of a magic kind.
Every fairy wand glistened in the air, as with silvery voices they cried, "Love and little Violet.
It was not difficult to understand that he had gained the crown of his ambition and that the silver-mounted wand he brandished was in his eyes as honorable a distinction as the marshal's baton which Conde threw, or did not throw, into the enemy's line of battle at Fribourg.
Wretch," cried Circe, giving him a smart stroke with her wand, "how dare you keep your human shape a moment longer
He went in again, wondering; the sound was so peculiar that the moment he heard it it called up the image of the willow wand striking the door.
Last eve in dreams, I saw thee stand, Like queenly nymphs from Fairy-land-- Enchantress of the flowery wand, Most beauteous Isadore!
Neither is the ancient rule amiss, to bend nature, as a wand, to a contrary extreme, whereby to set it right, understanding it, where the contrary extreme is no vice.
From the end of it a small wand planted here and there showed where the path zigzagged from tuft to tuft of rushes among those green-scummed pits and foul quagmires which barred the way to the stranger.
So twelve fairies came, each with a high red cap on her head, and red shoes with high heels on her feet, and a long white wand in her hand: and after the feast was over they gathered round in a ring and gave all their best gifts to the little princess.