Dresden Files
Dresden Files

Thorn manacles are a form of manacles used to prevent the cuffed person from using magic. They're first seen in Dead Beat.


Wizards or practitioners locked in the manacles who call on their magic writhe while dozens of sharp points prick into the wearer's wrist.[1]

According to Quintus Cassius, formerly of the Order of the Blackened Denarius, Nicodemus Archleone himself designed the manacles he put on Dresden. They had been used on witches and wizards for centuries.[1] Dresden himself suspected the Red Court designed them for their war with the White Council.[2]

According to Lash, however, the manacles were made by troll smiths of the Unseelie Court, and to overcome the bindings of the manacles one needs to seek the bane to those who made them. Dresden did it with iron and sunlight, the bane to trolls.[2]

In the series[]

Dead Beat[]

In Dead Beat, Harry Dresden is locked in a pair of thorn manacles by Quintus Cassius, while torturing him in the Field Museum of Natural History.[1]

Proven Guilty[]

In Proven GuiltyDarby Crane and his assistant Lucius Glau abducted Dresden and Henry Rawlins. He woke up in a pair of thorn manacles as well as a gag and hood at the Full Moon Garage, all to keep him from using his magic. When he attempted to reach for his magic, he felt the manacles become a frozen agony so strong they wiped out all thought. After a brief discussion with Lasciel to plot an escape, Dresden dislocates all the joints in his bad left hand and painfully squeezes it out of the manacle.[2]

Word of Jim[]

In a Barnes and Noble Q&A Jim Butcher explained the way the manacles work: by diverting the incoming flow of magic to the Nevernever so the wizard would be unable to use it.[3]