In D&D 5e, a spellcaster (we’ll use cleric as an example) can cast a spell as a bonus action and one as an action on the same turn, but one must be a cantrip - for example, in the same turn, a cleric can cast healing word and sacred flame.

On the other hand, though, you can cast a reaction spell and an action spell on the same turn, both of 1st level or higher - for example, hellish rebuke and cure wounds, if you have them both prepared.

Can you cast a healing word spell as a bonus action, then hold your action to cast cure wounds as a reaction when an ally takes their turn?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Are you presuming that as an action you have chosen "ready" as opposed to something else? If so, please add that to your question, since what you are doing with your action is incompletely stated in the example asked for. \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast Dec 18 '18 at 1:39

No, because the Ready Action requires you to cast the spell as normal and then hold it, releasing it with your reaction later.

You are using your action to cast the spell on your turn.

PHB pg. 193 under Ready, emphasis mine:

When you ready a spell, you cast it as normal but hold its energy, which you release with your reaction when the trigger occurs.

Which means you can't use a bonus action spell and then Ready a spell to be used later, because of the restriction in the Player's Handbook.

Source: PHB pg. 202 under Casting Time, emphasis mine:

Bonus Action

A spell cast with a bonus action is especially swift. You must use a bonus action on your turn to cast the spell, provided that you haven’t already taken a bonus action this turn. You can’t cast another spell during the same turn, except for a cantrip with a casting time of 1 action

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    \$\begingroup\$ Clarify what the "bonus spell imposed restriction" is please to improve the answer. You are correct, but leave an important detail out as to why. \$\endgroup\$ – SeeDerekEngineer Dec 18 '18 at 17:02

Not possible as worded, but it is possible to cast two spells back to back.

The only caveat is that you would need two turns to do it.

As Lino Frank Ciaralli points out, it is impossible to cast cast a non-cantrip spell and ready another on the same turn. Additionally, the ready action must be resolved before the start of your next turn, so it is also impossible to release a spell a readied spell via reaction and cast another on the same turn. But this does leave us with a bit of wiggle room.

A Readied action must be resolved before the start of your next turn, there is nothing stopping you from resolving it right before the start of your next turn. The trigger necessary for this would depend on GM, but could be as simple as "after X takes their turn" where X is the person in initiative directly before you.

Doing it this way would allow you to chain two spell casts together, by using your reaction of the turn where the first spell is cast, and then starting a brand new turn to cast another spell as normal.

The usefulness of this approach is left to the reader's imagination.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Actually, "after X takes their turn" would not be an allowed trigger, because it must be something that your character can perceive - which "taking a turn" is not. \$\endgroup\$ – Patta Dec 18 '18 at 18:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Patta I agree, but from my experience the trigger phrasing requirements vary from GM to GM. If a turn is not perceptible by a character, it can be rephrased to "after X takes an action". And assuming X does not pass their turn, there's your trigger. \$\endgroup\$ – Winterborne Dec 18 '18 at 19:34

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