The Binding of Isaac Wiki

Mom's Knife is an unlockable passive item.


Isaac will have his tears replaced by a single, penetrating knife. It can be shot diagonally by using two arrow keys (holding up and right will aim it diagonally for example.) It can also be used as an upfront melee weapon, in which case it does high damage and possibly instantly kills any non-boss enemies that its edge touches. The knife deals three times the melee damage when thrown, then two times when it stops, and same damage as melee when it comes back. On the other hand, the DPS is higher when using the knife as a melee weapon. Familiars will fire tears while the knife is charging.


  • The knife is tied to Isaac's base damage and shot effects (e.g. Spider's Bite).
  • A high tears stat will shorten the charge duration for the knife.
  • The distance the knife is able to travel is fixed at all times and therefore does not depend on the range stat. However, range ups will decrease the time it takes to charge the knife (similar to Tears).


  • Brimstone, Dr. Fetus - Mom's Knife overrides Brimstone and Dr. Fetus with no special effect.
  • The Candle - If the Candle is activated while the knife is in mid-throw the knife will continue to move in a direction and speed that matches the movement of the player at the instant the candle was activated. The knife will continue to deal damage to whatever it touches and will return to the player as soon as the candle is used or deactivated. This also works with items such as Bob's Rotten Head or Notched Axe.
  • IPECAC, The Inner Eye, Mutant Spider - Mom's Knife overrides all of these items, with a longer charge time and no damage increase. From Rebirth onwards, only The Inner Eye and Mutant Spider items will cause Mom's knife to have either three or four knifes fire at the same time.
  • Technology - Mom's Knife overrides Technology with no special effect.
  • Technology 2 - Mom's Knife overrides Technology 2, with the 65% damage still applying to Mom's Knife, making this synergy not recommended. Although the Technology 2 laser will still appear to fire, it is purely cosmetic and deals no damage.
  • Mom's Eye - Mom's Knife completely overrides Mom's Eye if Mom's Eye is picked up after Mom's Knife
  • Wiggle Worm - The knife stalls in the air when thrown upwards or downwards and wiggles up and down when fired left or right.
  • Max's Head, Magic Mushroom - Mom's Knife does not stack with the 1.5x multipliers of these items or any other 1.5x multipliers.


  • Certain tear affecting items also affect Mom's Knife, changing its color as well.
Knife the common cold The Common Cold
Tints the blade green and gives it a chance to poison enemies.
Knife number one Number One
Tints the blade yellow and makes it charge much quicker. The range down does not affect Mom's Knife in any way.
Knife the small rock Small Rock
Tints the blade grey and increases damage.
Knife a lump of coal A Lump Of Coal
Tints the blade black, but damage is unaffected.
Knife moms contacts Mom's Contacts
Tints the knife red and provides a chance to temporarily freeze enemies.
Knife spoon bender Spoon Bender
Tints the blade purple and gives a slight homing effect.
Knife ouija board Ouija Board
Tints the blade grey and makes it spectral. This synergy has no real effect on Mom's Knife, as it can already go through obstacles. However, this does make destroying poop and fires with Mom's Knife more difficult.
Knife sacred heart Sacred Heart
The blade turns white and deals much more damage with shorter recharge time.
Knife the parasite The Parasite
Turns the blade brown with no additional effects.
Knife spiders bite Spider's Bite
Tints the blade white and provides a higher chance of slowing enemies.
  • My Little Unicorn/VII Chariot - In addition to the damaging on touch effect, the knife does not disappear, allowing you to stab, throw the knife, and charge around at the same time, dealing high amounts of damage.
  • Pinky Eye - There is a 10% chance of the blade becoming poisonous (will appear green) upon entering a room.
  • Polyphemus - Greatly increases the damage of Mom's Knife without any effect on charge time. This synergy is strong enough to kill most bosses in under a second.
  • Mom's Bra - Isaac can deal high damage to any frozen enemy by simply standing near them, with little risk of being damaged himself.


  • As shown by the video below, The Candle with Mom's Knife makes the knife fly slowly toward that direction until it reaches the end of the wall or until you use the Candle shot.
  • Mom's Knife can sometimes float in the air aimlessly, even if it is not the candle glitch.
  • If the player has 3 Dollar Bill, the knife will have a randomized color in every room. If the player has homing tears (purple knife) for example, the knife could be red, too.

Related Achievements


  • This item is based on the kitchen knife Mom took to sacrifice Isaac.
  • Mom's Knife is inspired by Norman Bate's knife from the horror movie Psycho.[1]
  • Firing Mom's Knife will still leave small puddles as if Isaac were still firing tears.
  • Isaac wears Mom's dress when obtaining Mom's Knife. It was removed in the Rebirth remake's initial release, but was re-added in its Afterbirth DLC for the "Yes Mother?" transformation.


  1. (Web Archive)
Passive Items Tear Modifiers: The Inner EyeSpoon BenderMy ReflectionSkatoleCube of MeatCupid's ArrowDr. FetusMom's EyeWiggle WormTechnologyChocolate MilkLoki's HornsLittle ChubbySpider's BiteThe Common ColdThe ParasiteMom's ContactsMom's KnifeOuija BoardBrimstoneA Lump of Coal

(Wrath of the Lamb DLC: IPECACTough LoveTechnology 2Mutant SpiderEpic FetusPolyphemusSacred Heart)

Stat Ups: The Sad OnionMax's HeadNumber OneBlood of the MartyrMagic MushroomRoid RageRaw LiverLunchDinnerDessertBreakfastRotten MeatWooden SpoonThe BeltMom's UnderwearMom's HeelsMom's LipstickWire Coat HangerStevenPentagramThe MarkGrowth HormonesMini MushroomThe PactSmall RockSuper BandageRobo-BabyLittle C.H.A.D.Little GishLittle SteveThe RelicThe HaloMoney Equals PowerBlood BagOdd Mushroom (Thin)Odd Mushroom (Large)Whore Of BabylonBucket Of Lard
(Wrath of the Lamb DLC: StigmataSpeed BallChemical PeelBloody LustCat-O-Nine-TailsStem CellsTooth PicksSMB Super Fan!MEAT!Magic 8 BallSqueezyJesus Juice)

Familiars and Orbitals: Brother BobbyHalo Of FliesDistant AdmirationSister MaggyGuardian AngelDemon BabyDead BirdForever AloneSack Of PenniesBomb Bag
(Wrath of the Lamb DLC: Bum FriendThe PeeperGhost BabyHarlequin BabyDaddy LonglegsSacrificial DaggerRainbow BabyHoly WaterGuppy's Hair BallAbel)

Others: 1UPThe VirusLess Than ThreeSkeleton KeyA DollarA QuarterBoom!TranscendenceThe CompassPHDRosaryXRay VisionLucky FootMagnetoTreasure MapThe LadderCharm Of The VampireThe BatterySteam SaleDead CatLord Of The PitSpelunker HatMr. MegaThe Wafer9 VoltBobby-Bomb
(Wrath of the Lamb DLC: Guppy's TailMom's PurseBob's CursePageant BoyScapularInfestationThe MulliganHabitSpirit Of The NightAnkhCeltic CrossMitreFateThe Black BeanHoly GrailDead DovePyro3 Dollar BillMom's Coin PurseBox)

Activated Items Base Items: The PoopMr. BoomTammy's HeadMom's BraKamikazeMom's PadBob's Rotten HeadTeleport!My Little UnicornYum HeartDoctor's RemoteShoop Da Whoop!Lemon MishapThe HourglassThe NailWe Need To Go Deeper!Deck of CardsMonstro's ToothThe GamekidMom's Bottle of PillsThe DiceThe Pinking ShearsThe BeanDead Sea ScrollsRazor BladeForget Me NowA Pony

(Wrath of the Lamb DLC: Guppy's PawIV BagBest FriendRemote DetonatorGuppy's HeadPrayer CardNotched AxeCrystal BallCrack The SkyThe CandleD20Spider ButtDad's KeyPortable SlotWhite PonyBlood Rights)

Books: The BibleThe Book of BelialThe NecronomiconBook Of RevelationsBook of ShadowsAnarchist CookbookThe Book Of SinMonster Manuel
(Wrath of the Lamb DLC: Telepathy for Dummies)