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Magik Wand

General History
Like the Magik Staff, magik wands have been around for a very long time. Some of the first depictions of a wand come from Egypt, in the hands of Pharaoh. Not only did he carry a scepter for his kingdom, but also a wand. He was a 'God' after all. And magik was supposed to be part of his royal talents.
The Greek God Hermes (Mercury) is represented by a wand entwined with a snake and winged top. In legend, this wand is a sleep-producing wand. The famous musician Arion, had a wand of Ivory. Linguistic research shows the the symbol "cel" of the word Celts and "ger" of the German, both mean "wand". And both cultures used the wand as the symbol of the axis of the spring and summer solstices.
In Celtic legend, the three wise women who guide the steps of mankind (the Triple Goddess) are often seen or depicted with wands. Using these tools to direct their energy or control their desires during various events. One legend tells of the wise women facing cave dwelling giants, using their wands to dislodge boulders and rocks from the mountain to rain down upon the giants.
In Norse legend, Thor sets out to visit Geirrod without his weapons. The Hag Grid, warns Thor of the dangers he faces. She gives him her belt and magic wand to do battle upon his long journey. In this story Thor flings a boulder and breaks the back of a giantess with the wand.
In Aurthurian legend, Merlin casts his magik with the use of a silver wand; presumably constructed from the hardened blood of a unicorn that he helped to save from a dragon's attack.
But the wand isn't just seen in pagan paths. In catacomb frescoes of the third and fourth centuries, Christ is frequently represented performing miracles by means of a wand.
Scholars believe the wand found it's roots in the drumstick of a shaman. Especially from Siberia and Central Asia when drumming was used to raise energy before and during ceremonial rituals. Then pointing the wand at the recipient of that energy; such as a patient who required healing. From these humble beginnings, the wand has become a staple in magik practices through the centuries and into modern magik.
Making Your Own Wand
Within Witchcraft the wand is used for channeling and directing energy. Like the staff, you can make your own wand or purchase one that you feel drawn to. A lot of people are returning to wand usage, thanks in big part to Harry Potter. The movies especially have contributed to this; with the creation and sale of look alike wands. I was given Hermione's wand for a Yule present and frankly I think it's beautiful and decided to use it in my rituals.
But there's something to be said for making your own wand as well. A wand is typically made from wood. Depending on what energies you want to associate with your wand will depend on which wood you choose. There have many different types to choose from. Oak and Ash are the most commonly used on the pagan paths. Because of their spiritual reference to these two trees. But white pine, maple and apple are also popular choices. You might review the Tree Associations page for more information to help you decide.
But consider some other interesting alternatives. An Osage Orange tree (found around the US), is a beautiful light colored wood that gets darker as it ages, until it turns black. Crape Myrtle is a lovely white and very hard wood, and makes a wonderful staff material.
As with most wood tools, you can decide to carve a pattern, runes or personal sigils into your wand. But chose carefully as these symbols will add to the energy of your wand. Some people like to create several wands and consecrate them for different purposes.
If you use a metal or stones to decorate your wand, make sure you understand the properties of that item on the wand. Just like wood, metals and stones have their own magikal traits as well. You might review the Stone Energy page for more information to help you decide which crystals or stones might work best for your intent.
Just like with the staff, you might want to clear and cleanse it's energy before you begin working with the wood. Some people like to perform a ritual and bring the tool into a circle before any carving or decorating is done. It's a way to add or imprint your own energies upon the wood before working with it; or during the decorating process. It's also a chance to have your guides and the Gods/Goddesses come to work with you in the creation or decoration of the wand.
These methods are by no means set in stone. You can work on the wood and decorations and then take the wand into circle for clearing and cleansings. No matter which way you chose; the last thing you should do before actually using your wand is a consecration ritual. You want to imprint your desired use for this tool upon all the elements of the tool.
Additional Reading
Magikal Tools
Tool Symbology
Clearing, Cleansing & Protecting Your Energies
Cleansing & Consecration for an object or space

Source: 1, c3, c4, c8, c13, s1, s2, s4, s5, s6, s7, s11, s14, m1, m5, m18, m23