Caligarde's claw was an arcane conjuration spell that created an invisible claw made of pure force, similar to the various Bigby's hand spells.[2][3]


This spell could be cast at a target up to 60 yd (55 m) away. The target could be a particular entity or a 20-ft (6.1 m) diameter circular area. If the target was an individual, then that person had a chance to resist the spell, in which case the claw was created 10 ft (3 m) away in a random direction, as if it were a missed grenade-like missile attack.[2][3]

Once cast on an area, either intentionally or by missing the intended target, the claw attacked the nearest being within its 10 ft (3 m) reach. Caligarde's claw attacked once per minute for a duration equal to the caster's level, and with the same skill as the caster, but with the added feature that once it hit, it never missed again. If this spell successfully targeted an individual, then it was not fixed in place but continued to attack that being even if they moved more than 10 ft (3 m) away. A person taking damage from Caligarde's claw could not engage in normal spellcasting,[note 1] but items that did not require an intricate activation sequence could be used.[2][3]

Only magical barriers, such as anti-magic shell, shield, Bigby's interposing hand, and the like, could block the claw attack. Physical counterattacks had no effect. Caligarde's claw could be destroyed by dispel magic and similar effects.[2][3]


In addition to verbal and somatic components, this spell required a dried or preserved foot or claw as a material component.[2]


This spell was first published in the Workbook, a tome thought to have been written at the behest of the Mentor of the Seven Wizards of Myth Drannor.[4] This spell was later published in "Volo's Guide to All Things Magical" and became generally known to the magical community.[5]



  1. The 1st edition description is somewhat at odds with this statement. It says that the claw "did not necessarily physically interfere" with the target and therefore would not prevent spellcasting, but taking constant damage would certainly make it difficult to concentrate.


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