Spellbook of cancellation

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spellbook of
+   cancellation   Light green spellbook.png
Appearance random
Abundance 1.52%
Base price 700 zm
Weight 50
Turns to read 64
Ink to write 35–69
Spell type matter
Level 7
Power cost 35 Pw
Direction beam
Equivalent wand of cancellation

In NetHack, the spellbook of cancellation allows you to learn the cancellation spell.


Main article: Cancellation

When cast, the spell fires a beam which works exactly like the wand of cancellation: items will be uncursed and unenchanted, scrolls and most spellbooks will be blanked, most wands and magical tools lose their charges, and most potions will be turned into water. Monsters hit by the spell must each pass a monster MR check; if they fail, they can lose most or all of their special attacks.

The spellbook of cancellation is the only book that cannot be cancelled into a spellbook of blank paper by the spell or wand of cancellation, and the spell also cannot cancel the wand of cancellation or the wand of nothing.


The spell is very difficult to cast and of questionable utility - finger of death can kill most monsters outright for the same cost in magic power. Zapping a wand of cancellation will suffice for most situations, possessing the same benefits and drawbacks without the high magic power requirement. However, the spell has some benefits over the wand: a spellbook does not require special care around a bag of holding like the wand of cancellation, and at higher experience levels, the spell has a significant advantage in successfully passing monster magic resistance checks.