The ability of thirty Type II restriction endonucleases to cleave five different types of highly modified DNA has been examined. The DNA substrates were derived from relatively large bacteriophage genomes which contain all or most of the cytosine or thymine residues substituted at the 5-position. These substituents were a proton (PBS1 DNA), a hydroxymethyl group (SP01 DNA), a methyl group (XP12 DNA), a glucosylated hydroxymethyl group (T4 DNA), or a phosphoglucuronated, glucosylated 4,5-dihydroxypentyl group (SP15 DNA). Although PBS1 DNA and SP01 DNA were digested by most of the enzymes, they were cleaved much more slowly than was normal DNA by many of them. 5-Methylcytosine-rich XP12 DNA and the multiply modified T4 and SP15 DNAs were resistant to most of these endonucleases. The only enzyme that cleaved all five of these DNAs was TaqI, which fragmented them extensively.