Dresden Files

A wizard (male) or witch (female), on occasion called a mage,[1] is a practitioner exhibiting the fullest range of magical abilities known to mortals. They are considered to be the upper levels of power in comparison to mortals.[2]


When a wizard looks into someone's eyes, he sees more than just what color they are. Eyes are windows to the soul. When they make eye contact for too long, or too intently, she gets to peek in through the windows. You can't hide what you are from a wizard's soulgaze, and he can't hide from you. You both see each other for what you are, within, and it's with a clarity so intense that it burns itself into your head. Looking on someone's soul is something you never forget—no matter how badly you might want to. Of course, a soulgaze requires both participants to have a soul, so it's not a risk when starring at animals or creatures from the nevernever. Two people can only share a soulgaze once, and after that like things seen with the sight it stays with you forever always fresh in your mind.[3]


This ability goes by many names. It is the ability to see representations of magic on the physical world. For example, if a wizard sees a man whose wife has just died, he might see the man with sword wounds all over his body. It is also able to pierce through various illusions. However, it has a major flaw that prevents it from being commonly used; what is seen is never forgotten. While there is a chance of seeing something positive, the chances are that the wizard would see enough negative sights to drive him into complete insanity.[4]


Not to be confused with the aforementioned ability that shares the same name, The Sight is an ability all wizards develop as they begin to age. It is the ability to sense in various ways events that would happen in a wizard's future that could be brought on by various things that would be important to the future of the wizard.[5] It is suspected that the Gatekeeper has a greater precognition than most wizards according to the events that happen in Proven Guilty.[6]

Sensitivity to magic[]

It is the ability of detecting magic in both its natural state and worked forms. It's a natural ability in every practitioner. A regular person with that type of sensory feedback, in theory, makes it possible for  them to become a wizard.[7]

Each individual wizard has his or her own particular way of using their power. There is no one single standard of how they use any spell. For example, when evoking fire, one wizard might send forth a stream of tiny stars like machine gun fire, another can send a stream up in a high arc. They can be a variety of different colors.[8]

Death curse[]

Wizards who display enough talent to become members of the White Council have the ability to cast a Death curse. They are usually cast if a wizard has enough time to realize that they are in a hopeless situation, or if they feel strongly enough about wishing to cause someone, or something, serious harm.[9] In order to cast a death curse, a wizard must gather their remaining life energy and focus that energy into a spell causing a desired effect. Harry Dresden's mother, Margaret LeFay, cast her death curse upon Lord Raith, causing him, as a White Court vampire, to be unable to feed.[10] If a death curse is too vague, or is not well focused, it may not have any effect at all, such as when Quintus Cassius cast his death curse at Dresden stating "Die alone."[11]


Wizards are governed by the White Council.[12] A wizard breaking the Laws of Magic and using Black magic is termed a warlock. Breaking the Laws results in persecution, prosecution and punishment by the White Council.[13]

Longevity and regeneration[]

Powerful wizards have been known to live over 400 years. This longevity is due to their use of magic, the essence of creation itself, and is closely related to an innate ability for bodies to heal at something like an idealized maximum of human potential, assuming that the mind really is able to restore the body so effectively.(reference needed)

In the series[]

Dead Beat[]

In Dead Beat, Waldo Butters excitedly tells Harry Dresden that he has an unusually healing ability attributed to his being a Wizard. Past breaks have completely healed which just simply doesn't happen to regular people. This could explain a Wizard's longevity. And, because of this amazing ability to heal, Dresden may just get the use of his hand back in the future.[14]

Turn Coat[]

In Turn Coat, Anastasia Luccio states that most people aren't willing to accept a radical fact like the long life span of wizards. Some of her family are born several generations after the time she was born. They are strangers to her, though she doesn't see it that way. She checks in on them and looks out for any developing talent. Martha Liberty lives with her multiple great granddaughter and her children. So, some families can accept this fact, but for most wizards, it ends badly to stick around their descendants.[15]


In Changes, Ebenezar McCoy told Harry Dresden that what's going on in headquarters in Edinburgh could be the end of organized Wizardry and the end of the Laws of Magic.[16]


  1. "Dog Men"
  2. Storm Front, ch. 2
  3. Dead Beat, ch. 17
  4. Storm Front, ch. 11
  5. Small Favor, ch. 46
  6. Proven Guilty, ch. 6
  7. Ghost Story, ch. 28
  8. Turn Coat, ch. 42
  9. Storm Front, ch. 1
  10. Blood Rites, ch. 38
  11. Dead Beat, ch. 37
  12. Dead Beat, ch. 6
  13. Proven Guilty, ch. 1
  14. Dead Beat, ch. 4
  15. Turn Coat, ch. 28
  16. Changes, ch. 19