I've read both the question Casting multiple spells in a single round and the question Is it possible to cast multiple spells per turn? about using multiple spells on my turn. I know there are plenty of question concerning counterspell and how it works on my own turn.

From the example in Sage Advice Compendium, I also know that I can counter a counterspell that was cast against me on my turn:

Can you also cast a reaction spell on your turn? You sure can! Here’s a common way for it to happen: Cornelius the wizard is casting fireball on his turn, and his foe casts counterspell on him. Cornelius has counterspell prepared, so he uses his reaction to cast it and break his foe’s counterspell before it can stop fireball.

However, from my understanding, that contradicts the PHB:

You can't cast another spell during the same turn, except for a cantrip with a casting time of 1 action.

Both fireball and counterspell are not cantrips, and both are cast on the same turn. So is the example in the compendium misleading here, or do I have some gap in my understanding?


1 Answer 1


You may counterspell on your turn, as long as you have not already cast another spell with a casting time of 1 Bonus Action.

The rule you quote that you say is a contradiction is the "Bonus Action" spell rule. The full rule is:

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.

If you have already cast a spell using your Bonus Action, you cannot cast any other spells that turn except for a cantrip with a casting time of 1 Action. This means you may not cast counterspell if you already cast a bonus action spell. However, if you have not cast a Bonus Action spell yet, you are free to use your Reaction to cast counterspell.

Since fireball has a casting time of 1 Action, it does not fall afoul of the Bonus Action casting rule.

  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ Okay, that happens when we only read posts that quote just parts of the rules, instead of relying on the actual handbook. Thanks for your answer. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 21, 2021 at 18:05
  • 11
    \$\begingroup\$ @HimBromBeere No problem. The bonus action casting rule is, in my opinion, the most confusing rule of the whole spellcasting system. You're not alone in your confusion. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 21, 2021 at 18:08
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ However, if you are a sorcerer and cast a Qickened Fireball, you can’t cast a reaction spell. \$\endgroup\$
    – Dale M
    Sep 21, 2021 at 21:42
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @ThomasMarkov that is unfortunate. A Subtle spell empowered counterspell is a beautiful sight to behold. \$\endgroup\$
    – illustro
    Sep 24, 2021 at 16:33
  • 6
    \$\begingroup\$ Isn't the point of subtle spell that it isn't a sight to behold anymore? \$\endgroup\$
    – Farahad
    Sep 27, 2021 at 13:24

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .