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Once Upon A Bookshelf

Where Fiction and Reality Meet

Listed: Favourite Witches, Wizards and Warlocks

As a follow up to last weeks list, I had been planning on a list of my all-time most loved characters. Then I was thinking about how there are so many that I love, that I maybe should split it up into all-time most loved female characters and all-time most loved male characters. But then I got distracted by another topic, and so I think my all-time most loved characters lists must be put off a few weeks.

In honour of watching the first two of the Lord of the Rings trilogy this past weekend, I think today’s list would be well suited to witches, wizards and warlocks that I love (in no particular order). They are not all good – the “bad” ones sometimes hold much more interest for me. So this will be a mix of both the good and the bad, and why I love them.

  1. Gandalf. Originally appeared in J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. Originally Published 1937. If I were ever on a mission quest thing, I would want Gandalf to be there to guide me and help me out. That’s all there is to it.
  2. Severus Snape. Originally appeared in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Originally Published 1997. I was a Snape fan right from the beginning. I loved that it was so hard to tell whether he was good or bad, and that there was so much going on with his character that was impossible to completely figure out.
  3. Morgan le Fay. From Arthurian Legend. As much as I hate Guinevere and Lancelot, I love Morgan (or Morgaine, depending on what you’re reading). I love that she can be depicted as both good and bad, depending on exactly what you’re reading. But no matter what, she’s never a simpering female character, which is pretty darn awesome.
  4. Howl. From Diana Wynne Jones’ Howl’s Moving Castle. Originally Published 1986. I positively love how completely and utterly overdramatic he is – it completely cracks me up. His overdramaticism makes this book worth rereading again and again..
  5. Owen Palmer. From Shanna Swendson’s Enchanted, Inc (and sequels). Originally Published 2005. One of the few romantic leads that I actually enjoy who is magical. He is a super powerful wizard who is utterly charming and not only doesn’t realize how awesome he is, but he also is totally oblivious to a lot of what is going on around him that doesn’t involve stopping the bad guy.
  6. Magnus Bane. From Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments Trilogy. First book in the series originally published 2007. A truly powerful warlock who insists on wearing rainbow leather pants? Yes please!
  7. The White Witch (Jadis of Charn). Originally appeared in C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Originally Published 1950. She is possibly the epitome of evil witches in my mind, and was probably one of the first that I came across in books when I was a kid. I actually prefer her in The Magician’s Nephew than in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, because it’s so much fun seeing how she reacts to OUR world.
  8. Three Witches. From Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Originally written in early 1600’s. Goodness! I don’t even know where to start with these ones. Suffice it to say, they are my all-time favourite Shakespearean characters.
  9. Grand High Witch. From Roald Dahl’s The Witches. Originally Published 1983. This book used to scare me as a kid. This and the movie, oh! Angelica Huston gave me nightmares in this role. I love Dahl’s vision of witches – bald, no toes, always wearing gloves… some of his characteristics are so different than typical witches that it definitely makes them stand out. And the fact that the Grand High Witch is the most terrifying of all?
  10. Medea. From Greek Mythology. Medea used her knowledge of potions and such to help Jason get the Golden Fleece. After they were married, but he betrayed her and she took her revenge on him. While I find it infuriating when some characters will do anything to get what they want, I don’t mind it so much with Medea, probably because she manages to do parts of it with magic. I think the fact that she stands up for herself (in a horribly maleficent sort of way) when she is wronged by other people is what appeals to me about her.

I’ve no doubt that I’m missing some important ones here, but these are the ones that I always think of when I think about awesome witches, wizards and warlocks. No, actually I’m lying. I could’ve filled at least half of the list with characters from the Harry Potter series, but really wanted to limit it to one character from each thing listed. Anyway! Do you have any favourites?

Posted by Courtney Wilson @ 7:30 am July 27, 2009.
Category: Listed

  • Christina

    I wasn’t a fan of The Hobbit, but I love, love, love Snape. He’s always been my favorite character of the Harry Potter series.

  • Nymeth

    I love several of those too, but my absolute favourites are Granny Weatherwax and Tiffany Aching, both from Terry Pratchett’s Discworld.

  • Pardon My French

    Snape and Howl are two of my favorites as well! Also like Granny Weatherwax…

    This is a fun list!

  • Court

    Christina – Snape is such a wonderfully complex character!! :)

    Nymeth – I haven’t read the Discworld books yet… :(

    Pardon My French – Thanks! :)

  • Aarti

    I love Howl, too! What a great person :-) Though I bet if he were a girl, he’d annoy me. I’m a bit sexist, I guess, against my own sex.

    I have never heard of the Enchanted, Inc. series, but it sounds great! Will add to my wish list.

  • Kailana

    What a great list! I was actually trying to track down a copy of Castle in the Air today, but none of the stores have it. The library has book 1 and the newest one but not that one. So annoying! I agree with most of that list, and if I don’t, it’s because I haven’t read them yet… or… well, I am not a big Harry Potter fan…