Is there a way to manually move junk mails to junk folder in Thunderbird?

I have multiple email accounts configured in Thunderbird with

  • enabled adaptive junk mail controls for each account,
  • enabled "When I mark messages as junk, move them to the account's junk folder" and
  • enabled "Mark messages determined as junk as read".

That mean's that Thunderbird marks junk emails with a flame symbol and keeps them in the inbox. That's expected, because I get an overview of junk and important emails, but sometimes the junk filter is too aggressive, and I don't want to search for important mails in the junk folder.

Whenever Thunderbird forgets to mark a junk email, I can mark it and the email is moved into junk folder.

But how can I move the marked emails in my inbox into the junk folder. I found two approaches.

  1. Select the emails. Unmark them. Mark them as junk again. It works, but I guess it confuses the junk filter
  2. Select and right-click the emails, "Move to" -> email account -> junk folder. It works, but it's error-prone. It's possible to choose the wrong the email account or wrong folder. Furthermore, it takes some time to find the correct folder for some of my email accounts containing many folders.

It thought, I found a third solution, but actually it doesn't work. There is: Select and right-click the junk emails, "Move to [LAST FOLDER] again", but this causes junk mails from account 1 to be moved into the junk folder of account 2.

Is there an option, similar to mark as junk and move to junk folder, but for already marked emails?

  • you can create a filter for each account and run them manually when needed kb.mozillazine.org/Filters_%28Thunderbird%29
    – 1NN
    Jan 12, 2022 at 22:20
  • @1NN I'm not yet sure if this is not even better than what I've asked for. I have to work with it for a couple of days. But you could write an answer and I would upvote and mark it.
    – jabaa
    Jan 12, 2022 at 22:27

2 Answers 2


The Message Filters you can create in Thunderbird are quite powerful and versatile, and probably the easiest and best solution. You'll have to do the following for each one of your accounts:

Go to Tools -> Message Filtersor press Alt+TF. Choose the account for which you want to create the filter, and and press on New... to create a new filter. You can add more than one rule, which take into account not only TB's Junk filter, but also flags from your server: see the example in the below screenshot.

enter image description here

For your usecase, make sure you untick the Getting New Mail option, otherwise the filter will automatically run every time you receive email.

Under "Perform these actions", make sure to select the right folder where to move the email. What you might want to do is add an action of "Mark as read". Once you're done, click on OK.

Now, everytime you need to run your filter, make sure you are in "Inbox" of the interested account, and use the shortcut Alt+TF to open the Filters dialogue. Select the right filter and click on Run now. You can also select a different folder from the Run selected filters on.. dialogue.

enter image description here

Remember, each filter is associated with exactly one account. And when running filters, they will apply only to one folder at a time.

For further information, see the link at the beginning of the answer.


It's possible to mark an already marked email with the keyboard shortcut J or

Right-click -> Mark -> As Junk

Both actions also move the emails to the junk folder.

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