The Wonderful World Of Wizards

Wizards - what makes their stories so spellbinding?

Let's look into their wonderful and magical world.

From fantasy books to the movies, we all sit silent in theaters and become attentive, voracious readers while these fictional characters practice their magic or share their knowledge and advice.

For years now, powerful and fantastic stories in some of the best selling books ever have captivated our imagination.

Have you ever searched deep down into their folklore and explored the many facets of their character?

The Way of Wizards, by Tom Cross, is a beautifully illustrated, large format book that will carry you away into their world. Several pages are entirely devoted to descriptions of the clothing they wear - from their conical hat right down to their socks!

Go ahead...wander through each of their four realms.

Epic tales of wise, grey-bearded mages and elves, and more recently, the adventures of a young boy and his equally gifted classmates and friends, have drawn readers of all ages into a magical and enchanting realm.

Magic 101

Wizards are always in pursuit of knowledge.

The grimoire or book of magical knowledge contains all the facts a wizard needs to know. It included spells, to charms, divinations, potions.

Visit the Magical Library where you can find an entire collection of grimoire including the Solomon Grimoire and the Ares Nutria.

Gained over a long period, this magical knowledge involves many facets of the arts and sciences. This study is most often under the tutelage of an older wise personage but also from the study of the best wizard books, and the guidance of several outstanding professors.

In the case of our fictional hero Harry Potter© and his friends, it took seven years to complete their education in subjects such as transformation, spells and potions...and let's not forget learning to defend themselves against dark and sinister forces.

If learning the magic of wizardry were an easy task then we would all be so gifted. Yet only a few, such as the fictional "Wizards of Creation" have mastered this mysterious and exciting power.

Fictional wizards are born with these powers...so were their counterparts in mythology, science and fantasy fiction.

History

Real, historical characters have demonstrated an uncanny ability to control the forces of nature - in other words the basic four element of air, fire, water and earth.

Shamans were among the first wise men who were able to access the spirit world. They enjoyed a powerful connection with their environment and the forces of nature. Only a shaman could train another shaman. Sound familiar?

The Druids of Celtic Britain had all the skills of wizards as we know them with a deep understanding of nature, animals and the healing power of herbs.

The story of Mog Ruith, a great Druid magician, describes his total control over the elements. Alchemy flourished then - the stuff of magic!

Could alchemy be the magical version of chemistry? Scholars of the Middle Ages were a curious lot. What made the world go 'round? Also new - scientific investigation.

We suppose that early alchemists had the powers and abilities of magicians - muttering spells, brewing potions, predicting the future.

They were looking for the secrets to eternal life but their ultimate goal was to create the elusive Philosopher's Stone - a powerful, magical material capable of transforming base metals into gold and healing diseases.

Speaking of gold...the Celts were master jewelers.

Time to forget about the stereotype. Not all these characters were old men with long grey beards, carrying a staff, dressed in flowing robes and pointed hats.

Myths and Legends

Wizards found in old fairy tales and myths include:

Faust - Was he a wizard, or a real person? Faust, also known as Dr. Faust or Johann Fausten is a fictional character first introduced in a Johann Spies book published in 1587 - The History of D. Johann Fausten.

Merlin - The famous wizard in the legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Circe, the well known sorceress of Greek legend made famous in Homer's Odyssey. Truly a contradiction in wizarding interests, Circe was both a sorceress who loved to show off her great magical abilities and a ritualist. Her dominant ability was transformation and her favorite tool, the wand.

Baba Yaga of Russian folklore...the main character in a magical tale, she lives in a hut, deep in a swampy forest.

Fantasy Fiction

Characters found in fantasy fiction include:
  • Allanon, also known as a Druid and historian, of author Terry Brook's Shannara Trilogy.
  • Belgarath the Sorcerer - hero of the fantasy epic [comprised of 5 books] written by David Eddings.
  • Who can forget John Cleese as Tim The Enchanter in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
  • Anybody remember Crispin in the popular Sierra computer game series called King's Quest? or his cohorts Mordach and Mannanan?
  • Elminster - in the Forgotten Realms fantasy novels.
  • Fizban "The Fabulous" is the wise and powerful fictional character from the Dragonlance fantasy novels written by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. Enter the fantasy world of Dragonlance!
  • Gandalf, Saruman and Radagast from Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and the legends of Middle-Earth.
  • Mordenkainen in the Greyhawk fantasy series by Wizards of the Coast.
  • The Force be with you....and Obi-Wan Kenobi, it's master.
  • Sparrowhawk from A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. LeGuin. A young wizard attending a school of magic...How familiar is that?
Can you anyone as popular as...

Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkle Emanuel Ambroise Diggs, better known as Ozpinhead or simply Oz: The Wizard of Oz.

In L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, he is depicted as a stage magician pretending to be a real wizard; Oz is still a pretend wizard in the 1939 movie version of this fabulous story. In later Oz books, he studies magic with Glinda the Good Witch and becomes a genuine wizard.

Computer Games

And if you are into computer games...visit these sites for a preview of several wizard games. Imagine playing as one of the three wizard friends at the Sports World Cup, or in the soon to be released E&A computer game. Ever entered the world of Wizard 101? Join millions of players online. The game is free to play.

Recommended Reading

Articles about magicians in fantasy. At the LibraryThing, check out their long list of titles on the subject of magicians. More on Magic, Magical Elements, and MagicTricks.
> Wizards and Wizardry