Scroll of punishment

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? Scroll.png
Name punishment
Appearance random
Base price 300 zm
Weight 5
Ink to write 5-9
Monster use Will not be used by monsters.

The scroll of punishment is one of the nastiest scrolls in the game. It punishes you by chaining a heavy iron ball to you, which hinders your movements.

Reading effects

Case Effect
blessed or confused No effect
uncursed unpunished You are punished
punished The iron ball's weight increases by 160
cursed unpunished You are punished
punished The iron ball's weight increases by 320


Scrolls of punishment are randomly generated with the same probability as all other 300zm scrolls. 1.5% of all randomly generated scrolls are scrolls of punishment.

Wizards and monks may start with an identified scroll of punishment.


It is expensive, so when unidentified, less careful players might mistake it for the scroll of genocide or the scroll of stinking cloud. When blessed, this scroll is harmless; you only get the message "You feel guilty".

The scroll self-identifies when you read it.


Message Reason
"You feel guilty." The scroll was blessed, or you were confused
"You are being punished for your misbehavior!" The scroll was uncursed or cursed
"A ball and chain appears, then falls away." You were punished, but the chain couldn't be attached to you


It has been said that the best thing about the scroll of punishment is its resale value. Aside from that, you probably want to use these for blanking.

See punishment for why being punished may be desirable. Short version: it isn't, except as a makeshift weapon before you see anything else, or some corner cases involving jumping.



Reading a non-blessed scroll of punishment while confused will summon a punisher. This reveals it as a Bad Idea.

This page may need to be updated for the current version of NetHack.

It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.6.1. Information on this page may be out of date.

Editors: After reviewing this page and making necessary edits, please change the {{nethack-361}} tag to the current version's tag or {{noversion}} as appropriate.