Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Wizard and Mage

Wizard vs Mage

Both wizards and mages are persons who are affiliated with magic and sorcery. Both magic practitioners are also often encountered as characters in fantasy-themed works of art like in literature or in general folklore as part of myths and legends. They are also popular characters in digital or computer games like RPG (Role Playing Games) or MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing games).

The first distinction between the two is that “wizard” comes from the Proto-Germanic word “wisaz,” a masculine term which means “to see or to know.” A wizard is not only a magical practitioner but also a lore-master and a specialist of arcane knowledge. Also, the term “wizard” is closely tied to the Wicca or witchcraft practice.

A wizard is a person with magical attributes and can be considered as a traditional magic wielder that practices a large variety of magic and uses magic by means of an instrument like a staff. In the modern times, the term “wizard” can also be attributed to a person who has a high intellect or specialized skills, or a software program that eases a step-up program for a computer user.

On the other hand, a mage is a not a gender-specific term and can either apply to a woman or a man. A mage comes from the Old Persian word “magu” which also means the “wise one.” A popular reference to mages is the three wise men in the Nativity story. Like its “wizard” cousin, a mage is a person of high intellect who has considerable knowledge of magic and its related fields. Mages also sometimes employ a staff as part of their ensemble.

Mages can either be factual or fictional. A factual mage is more of a shaman or a medicine person and is more involved in the ritual rather than the magic or transformation itself. Mages can also trace their origins as priests of the Zoroastrian religion.

Meanwhile, the fictional mage is closely related to a wizard as a magic practitioner. A mage is a specific type of magic practitioner who concentrates on a specific magic like elemental, attack, or defense magic. They come with an immense intellect and the ability to control and change their surrounding by virtue of magic. Mages are also practitioners of the traditional approach, but they also made attempts to draw magic from within themselves and from others. This makes them quite apart from other magic practitioners.


1.Both wizards and mages are considered as the “wise ones” and are affiliated with magic and fantasy. However, a wizard is a male magic practitioner while a mage can be a female or a male magic practitioner.
2.The term “wizard” comes from Proto-Germanic origin “wisaz” while the word “mage” derives its origin from the Old Persian language of “magu.”
3.A wizard is most likely a product of fantasy while a mage can be a real or an imagined person. Real mages existed as priests of the Zoroastrian religion and as medicine people or shamans.
4.Wizards specialized in traditional methods but broad aspects of magic while the mage employs both the traditional and experimental aspects of the magic craft. Mages are also more specific in their area of expertise.
5.Mages are considered to be more “learned” compared to wizards since they attempt to harness magic from their own persons as well as from other people. Mages are more into the ritual practice rather than the transformation itself.
6.“Wizard” is a term that is now used in modern language to denote a high intellect or a specialized skill (for example, a computer wizard) while the term “mage” is not or hardly used in modern language.

Sharing is caring!

Search DifferenceBetween.net :

Email This Post Email This Post : If you like this article or our site. Please spread the word. Share it with your friends/family.


  1. Just a few corrections on the mythology.

    Wizards are actually born with innate magic and use it just by thinking the staves they carry are just to focus that magic Wizards are also practitioners of self-defense and a teacher not only of Arcane Knowledge but Knowledge in general and they live much longer they can be either good or evil and they always belong to an Order of equals

    Mages are people who learned magic through a large amount of study and practice and they often use tools as they have no innate magic of their own, though often associated with Wizards as well one of the most well known of these tools is the grimoire or book of magic spells unlike the Wizards Mages must use an incatation and that is why spells and tools are so important to them.

  2. Of my understanding, Mages may also wear armor (Armbands, Platmail, Etc.) but wizards do not.

Leave a Response

Please note: comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

Articles on DifferenceBetween.net are general information, and are not intended to substitute for professional advice. The information is "AS IS", "WITH ALL FAULTS". User assumes all risk of use, damage, or injury. You agree that we have no liability for any damages.

See more about :
Protected by Copyscape Plagiarism Finder