Time Travelling Spell
General Information


Current location


Physical Description



See "Ingredients"


Travelling through time

Usage Information
Used by
Used on
Show Information
Appears in

It's Not Easy Being Green

First appearance


Latest appearance

There's No Place Like Home

"Time travel spells have been written since the dawn of the dark arts but never cast. It's against the fundamental laws of magic."
Mr. Gold to Zelena[src]

The Time Travelling Spell is a spell featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. It first appears in the twentieth episode of the third season.


Before First CurseEdit

Abandoned at birth by her mother, Zelena becomes immensely jealous of her half-sister's extravagantly royal life. She asks the Wizard of Oz to send her back in time so her own past can be rewritten, but he states that's not impossible. In her frustration, Zelena pulls down a curtain, unveiling the Wizard as a fraud, and then turns him into a flying monkey. ("It's Not Easy Being Green")

Temporarily, Zelena gives up obsessing about changing the past when Glinda welcomes her into a sisterhood of witches. Glinda believes, per a prophecy in the Book of Records, that Zelena is the destined Witch of the West. However, this foretelling proves to be faulty as Zelena suspiciously believes a newcomer, Dorothy, will steal her seat. After faking her own death, she masquerades as the Wizard and sends Dorothy home. Zelena then banishes Glinda to the Enchanted Forest and becomes more determined than ever to change her own past. ("Kansas")

Coming from the future to the Enchanted Forest, Emma and Hook accidentally change history by interfering during Prince Charming and Snow White's first encounter. Nonetheless, Emma and Hook set things right by ensuring the two meet in order to leave the future unchanged. Having saved a woman, Marian, who was set for execution, the two decide to take her with them to the present. They obtain a wand from Rumplestiltskin to make a portal, but he warns only those who have traveled through it can recreate one. Since Emma cannot, he entraps her and Hook in his vault. Casually, Hook pulls out a vessel from a cabinet; hoping it has some use to take them home. Emma, reaching an epiphany, realizes she now truly considers Storybrooke as her home, which restores her lost magic. After she opens a portal, Hook and Marian are sucked in. Before Emma joins them, she tells a demanding Rumplestiltskin about his missing son, Baelfire, who dies in the future to save them all. As Rumplestiltskin lets her go, he drinks a potion to forget learning such devastating information. Emma, as well as the vessel, are pulled back into present-day Storybrooke. ("Snow Drifts", "There's No Place Like Home")

Before Second CurseEdit

Through some means, the Wicked Witch of the West, Zelena, discovers four key ingredients for enacting a time spell; a symbol of wisdom, courage, love and innocence. When Prince Charming and Snow White learn she wants to steal their unborn child, they consult with Glinda, who confirms their daughter, Emma, is their only hope of defeating Zelena. Thus, Snow White casts another curse to reach Emma, sacrificing her husband's heart, though Zelena interferes by adding a potion to erase everyone's memories of the last year in the Enchanted Forest. Zelena, however, retains her recollections by ingesting an elixir. ("A Curious Thing")

During Second CurseEdit

After the second curse is cast, Zelena poses as a midwife to get close to a pregnant Mary Margaret, whose unborn child will serve as a symbol of innocence for the time spell. She also works on obtaining a symbol of courage from David by drugging him with night root and forcing him to fight a manifestation of his own fears. Armed with his sword, David kills the illusion with a spark of courage. Following the battle, the weapon disappears and ends up in Zelena's possession. ("Witch Hunt", "The Tower")

With her true identity as the Wicked Witch disclosed to the public, Zelena attempts to gain a symbol of love by tearing out the heart of her half-sister, Regina. Unexpectedly, she is outsmarted as Regina cleverly took out her own heart and hide it elsewhere. Zelena retreats from the fight, and later admits to an imprisoned Mr. Gold that she isn't collecting ingredients for a curse, but to change her own past. ("Quiet Minds", "It's Not Easy Being Green")

Since Emma's light magic is Zelena's greatest weakness, she curses Hook's lips and orders him to kiss the savior and drain all her magic. Then, Zelena distracts Regina while Mr. Gold takes her sister's heart from Robin Hood. ("The Jolly Roger", "Bleeding Through")

After Second CurseEdit

Shortly after Regina breaks the second curse by giving Henry a kiss of true love, Mary Margaret goes into labor. Though Emma prevents Zelena from closing in with a shield, she forfeits her magic in order to resuscitate a drowned Hook. With the barrier gone, Zelena breaks into the hospital room to steal Mary Margaret's newborn son. In a barn house, she assembles all the ingredients on a drawn symbol, preparing to cast the spell, when David, Emma, Hook, Regina and Robin Hood arrive for a battle. Harnessing new-found light magic, Regina immobilizes Zelena and stops the spell. She also takes away Zelena's pendant, which is the source of her magic, and stores it in a vault. Left powerless and confined to a jail cell, Zelena is killed by a vengeful Mr. Gold. Unseen to him, her ashes dissipate and the pendant, giving off a green mist, activates the time spell. ("Kansas")

Through some investigation, David and his allies find Zelena missing, though Mr. Gold magically manipulates the situation to make himself look innocent of any wrongdoing. They decide to stay away from the time portal for now, but Emma and Hook are sucked into it. When the couple manage to come back, they bring with them one of the Evil Queen's prisoners, Marian, who happens to be Robin Hood's wife. Unbeknownst to anyone, a vessel was also brought from the past. Elsa frees herself from it and sets out to explore Storybrooke. ("Snow Drifts", "There's No Place Like Home")


  • A symbol of wisdom pointing North
  • A symbol of courage pointing East
  • A symbol of love pointing South
  • A symbol of innocence pointing West

Additionally, a drawn outline of a mystic symbol on the ground is required, and the caster must stand inside while casting the spell.

Ways to Break the SpellEdit

  • Regina uses her light magic in order to expel Zelena from the symbol carved into the ground and stop the spell. ("Kansas")


  • The four ingredients of the spell represent a specific element of light magic—love, wisdom, courage and innocence—which are also embodied by the sisterhood of witches of Oz.
    • These elements are derived from the items sought by Dorothy's traveling party in original The Wizard of Oz—the Scarecrow's brain, the Tin Man's heart, and the Cowardly Lion's courage.
    • For her spell, Zelena uses a golden brain made from Mr. Gold's spun straw as the symbol of wisdom; Prince Charming's broken sword as the symbol of courage; Regina's heart as the symbol of love, and David and Mary Margaret's newborn baby as the symbol of innocence.


Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.