Bookish talk · Books

Character Wars – Gandalf or Dumbledore?

Hey guys!

Now before we start, I should clear that the title is misleading and this is no war. This is far from a war. This is just a polite and friendly discussion about the favorite from favorites.

Today, I’ll be talking about my favorite between Dumbledore and Gandalf. Both are exceptionally wise and prudent, have beautiful quotes to offer, have a huge role in their respective books, are both wizards and have a similar appearance. In short, they are basically twins. Except, they’re not. And that is why I’m writing this post. Honestly, i never thought I’d be choosing between two of the most influential characters in my life. But here I am, challenging myself and anybody reading this, for the toughest choice to make. I’m hoping it would help overcome my indecisiveness a little.


Image source – Drawing how to draw


I had read Harry Potter before LOTR and Dumbledore is my favorite character from HP. Harry’s mentor and counsellor, giving just the right advice and helping him out in whatever way he can, aside from being the Headmaster for the biggest school of magic and the most powerful wizard. There must be so much pressure in his life and yet he showed no signs of it and was always a step ahead in the game. Voldemort would have never been able to cause the damage that he did if Dumbledore was alive and yet even Dumbledore’s death didn’t stop him from helping Harry.


Source: Xiibi deviantart


Gandalf the Grey (or white) was Frodo and Bilbo’s guide, always carving the path for them and laying the groundwork for the bigger plans. He was sporadic in his presence in the book, but when he was not beside the fellowship offering advice and sassy teachings, he was off helping them indirectly and was working in the shadows. He can be called the unsung hero of LOTR.  The ring would have never been destroyed without his help and of course he was the one that called the Eagles!


They may have a similar role of the guide and counsellor, but their personalities were quite different. While Gandalf was mostly approaching everything in a seemingly light hearted-and sometimes quite funny-way, Dumbledore was serious in his demeanor. Not that he didn’t joke around, he was just as sassy, but that he was respectable while Gandalf was more eccentric in his ways. They both had different ways of tackling problems but indeed, they were both willing to put their lives on the line for the greater good.


This is harder than I expected. They are both very competent and worthy. But, I think, and I thought a LOT about it, by a very small mark  Dumbledore would have to be the victor (not Victor Krum). There I said it.  Now I feel as though I’m betraying LOTR and Gandalf.

The reason I chose Dumbledore is because HP is my favorite book and I CRIED when Dumbledore died. It was the first time I’d cried over the death of a fictional character. I cried even though I knew, because a certain cruel someone had spoiled it for me. I had become so attached to Dumbledore.

Gandalf is just as close to my heart. Like I said it was by a very small, the tiniest of the tiniest, mark.


What about you guys?

I’m sorry to be putting such a difficult question to you but if for the sake choosing, you had to, who will it be? It’s absolutely okay if you don’t answer or if you like them both. I am just interested in hearing your opinion so don’t be shy to comment below!

Thank you for reading this awfully long post and hope you liked it!


I do not own any of the images featured in this post. 

A small note : 

This is the first post in what would hopefully be a series of posts, depending upon the feedback I get from you guys. Would you like to read more such posts? Any advice and feedback is welcome. Thanks!




18 thoughts on “Character Wars – Gandalf or Dumbledore?

  1. Ganfalf for me, definitely 🙂 But it’s all about me being more of a Tolkien reader and that Gandalf beat Dumbledore in being the first of the wizards I got to know. Still I deeply respect and like both of them. There’s definitely a lot to learn from both.
    It’s an interesting post! I really enjoyed it, so would be great to read more of the kind.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for the feedback!
      Tolkien’s world is an impressive one and no matter how many times you read it, there’s always something new and wonderful you discover about it.
      And as you said, there is indeed a lot to learn from both.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. A person can actually do a PhD in Tolkien literature haha.
        Also, your blog is a great insight and a fresh perspective on that world. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I wouldn’t mind doing a PhD in Tolkien 😀 Surely, if I ever have a chance I will 🙂
        Thank you so much! I’m glad you’re enjoying it and thanks for reading!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. When it’s Gandalf’s staff vs. Dumbledore’s wand, Dumbledore is stronger hands down. Hand to hand battle, Gandalf wins. Intellectual battle, Dumbledore. Mentor-wise, both are great. But like you say…I am also biased towards Dumbledore:)
    Do keep on with this series! I really like the idea of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is a great analysis! Both Gandalf and Dumbledore are excellent in something or the other.
      And thanks for the feedback. Hopefully, I’ll do more. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I won’t choose, because I like to believe they are actually the same person and he’s so powerful that he’s able to travel across the divide into alternative dimensions. He’s taken two names, to help two little guys defeat evil. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a great theory! I totally support it. They both even look alike. And also maybe that’s why he left middle earth in the end, so that he can go to Hogwarts. 😉


    1. This is such a hilarious video! It’s a totally valid reason to choose Gandalf. I would love to do this as well, if I am ever able to overcome my awkwardness haha.

      Liked by 1 person

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