Mistaken missive was an alteration spell that slowly changed a written message to have the opposite intent of the original message.[1]


This spell could be applied to one page of text written by hand in ink. More experienced casters could alter more pages. The spell was very quick to cast, taking only a few seconds, but the full effect of the spell was slowly revealed over the next six days. On the first day, the ink faded, making the text appear as if the writer penned the message with very little ink. On the second day, the words were shifted and uneven, as if the author had a shaking fever or was trying to write in a moving carriage. For the next two days, the message was completely unintelligible and appeared to be written in code. The letters were grouped like words in lines like sentences (complete with punctuation), but were incoherent and bore no apparent relationship to the original message. By the fifth day, the letters formed recognizable words but still read like gibberish (e.g. "Egg west worse green!"). On the sixth day, the message was clear, readable, and appeared to be written by the same hand as the original, but the intent of the message was altered to the opposite meaning. For example, "Send troops quickly!" might become "All is fine. Keep your men in reserve."[1]

The changes to the text were imperceptible to a casual viewer as they gradually took place over 144 hours. If the original text contained a coded message, then the altered text also contained a coded message with an altered meaning. If cast on a magic scroll or a spell in a spellbook, mistaken missive caused a new and different spell to form that appeared to be legitimate magical writing, but fizzled if casting was attempted.[1]

The original message could be viewed using a glass of preserved words and completely restored by casting dispel magic on the text.[1]


The caster had to touch the document when casting this spell. In addition to verbal and somatic components, three drops of ink were needed as the material component.[1]


This spell was known to clerics in the time of ancient Netheril.[3] Mistaken missive was recorded in the Scepter of Mystra[4] and Gorothir's Girdle.[5]



Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.