The angel banishing sigil is a sigil drawn in blood that banishes any angels within its range.
The sigil acts mainly as a defense mechanism against angels, allowing the user to banish nearby angels for various reasons including being threatened by them. It can be used by both angels and humans, but it is unknown if demons or monsters can use it. It can be used to banish multiple angels at once and is effective against all angels, including archangels as powerful as Lucifer. Nephilim however are immune to its powers despite their angelic heritage. After its first usage in Heaven and Hell, hunter Sam Winchester called it "serious blood magic."
The user must paint the sigil in their own blood. Once the sigil is painted, the user activates it by slapping their palm into it which banishes any angels within its blast radius.
During the Hunt for Anna Milton, former angel Anna Milton instinctively remembered the sigil while under attack by Castiel and Uriel. Anna was able to paint the sigil on a mirror and banish Castiel and Uriel though she did not understand what she had done. Anna's ability to come up with the sigil caused the Winchesters to realize that something more was going on with Anna than hearing "angel radio." Sam called the sigil "serious blood magic" when discussing it with Dean.
While looking for Castiel after he spoke to Dean in a dream, the Winchesters spotted a banishing sigil on the wall of a warehouse Castiel and several other angels had fought in. The Winchesters recognized the sigil from when Anna used it and were disturbed by the implication that angels were fighting other angels. Whether Castiel succeeded in using the sigil is unknown as he ultimately lost the fight and was yanked from his vessel.
After choosing to aid Dean Winchester in stopping the Raising of Lucifer, Castiel cut himself with the demon-killing knife and drew an angel banishing sigil upon the wall of the Green Room. When Zachariah attempted to intervene, Castiel used the sigil to begin his rebellion against Heaven by banishing Zachariah.
While at Chuck Shurley's house, Dean prepared a banishing sigil in case any angels showed up. After Zachariah arrived with his foot soldiers, he noticed Dean's hand bleeding. Calling it an "insurance policy" in case the angels showed up, Dean revealed and activated the sigil, banishing the three angels. Dean angrily yelled that it was something that he had learned from his friend Castiel who had been killed by Raphael shortly before.
When Anna went back in time to 1973 to kill John and Mary Winchester before Sam and Dean could be born, Sam used a banishing sigil to get rid of Anna after they could not defeat her. Banishing sigils were one of the defenses put up around the safe house they retreated to with Dean teaching John how to draw them. However, Anna and Uriel managed to erase the sigils before they began their attack.
During the Raising of Adam Milligan, Dean used a banishing sigil to get rid of Castiel so that he could escape Bobby's Panic Room. Castiel later carved a sigil into his own chest to banish four angels so that the Winchesters could rescue Adam Milligan from the Green Room. Castiel would end up off the coast of Louisiana where he would be found by a fishing boat. After waking up in the hospital, Castiel would discover that the remainder of his fading powers were gone.
When the Winchesters, Castiel and Meg raided Crowley's Monster Prison, Samuel Campbell used a variation of the sigil to banish Castiel so that the Winchesters could be captured by Crowley's demons. Castiel managed to return from the banishment in a relatively short period of time to save the Winchesters and Meg from Crowley.
After discovering Hester and Inias menacing Sam, Meg, Castiel and Kevin Tran, Dean used a banishing sigil to get rid of them temporarily. The sigil also banished Castiel as he was in the room at the time. Castiel ended up at a dog track in Perth, Australia.
Unable to defeat the Farmer Angel and the Kim Schortz Angel during the Battle of Linwood Memorial Hospital, Dean used the blood from his injuries to draw a banishing sigil on the floor of the hallway. After wondering out loud where the banishing sigil would send them with Heaven closed, Dean activated the sigil. While the two hostile angels were banished, the sigil left behind Gadreel who was in a nearby room.
After being threatened by the Rit Zien Ephraim, the now-human Castiel cut his finger with the thorn on a rose and drew a banishing sigil on a glass pane. Before Castiel could activate the sigil, Ephraim noticed and stopped him.
When Lucifer intended to kill them after getting the Hand of God, Sam quietly cut his palm and drew a small banishing sigil upon a pillar. After Lucifer discovered that the Hand of God was out of power, he angrily advanced on Dean. As Lucifer passed Sam, Sam activated the sigil and banished Lucifer from the Men of Letters bunker.
To buy time for Sam, Lucifer and Donatello Redfield to escape after Lucifer was rescued, Metatron attempted to use a variation of the banishing sigil on Amara. After the sigil's power was used up, Amara was completely unharmed and asked Metatron "you were kidding with that, right?"
In order to kidnap Sam, Lady Toni Bevell used a variation of the sigil to banish Castiel from the bunker. Castiel crashed into a field about three hours away from the bunker in the form of a comet. Castiel stole a truck and returned to the bunker where Dean and Mary Winchester had arrived and found the used sigil.
While fighting Ishim after his actions were revealed, Dean drew a variation of the banishing sigil upon a wall. However, Ishim warned Dean that while he would just be banished, the injured and weak Castiel could end up killed by being banished in his state. Dean relented, but Sam and Lily Sunder arrived to help fight and kill Ishim instead.
When Conrad, Lily and Miriam attempted to kidnap Jack, Sam used a small sigil to banish Lily and Conrad. The banishment caused Conrad's angel blade to be left behind and drop to the floor while Miriam, several rooms away, was not banished. Jack was also not banished by the banishing sigil despite his angelic heritage but it causes him pain and makes golden marks appear in his veins.
While under siege from six angels, Sam suggested allowing the angels to enter and then banishing them. However, Dean refuted the plan as he knew that if the angels got in, they would all die.
In an alternate timeline created by the disappearance of John Winchester in 2003, Sam used an angel banishing sigil to get rid of the alternate Castiel who was trying to kill Sam and Dean during the Skirmish at Big & Little Palace.
The sigil's main effect is to banish all angels within its range. A single sigil is capable of banishing multiple angels at once and the sigil's effects are shown to work on an archangel as powerful as Lucifer. The size of the drawn sigil appears not to matter as a small one was able to banish Lucifer, the most powerful angel ever seen to be banished with the sigil.
The range of the sigil appears to be all angels within relatively close proximity, usually within the same room or hallway. In I Think I'm Gonna Like It Here, a sigil painted on the floor of a hallway banished the two angels within the hallway, but left alone another angel in an adjacent room mere feet away. However, a sigil painted on the wall outside of a room containing three angels within in Reading Is Fundamental was able to banish all of the angels within the room. When this sigil was being used, it could be seen glowing on the other side of the wall it was painted on from within the room itself. After the banishment, the sigil appeared to be scorched into the other side of the wall. When it was used in Heaven and Hell, the sigil was painted on a mirror on the other side of a wall facing the room the angels were in.
While the angels still had their wings, the sigil appeared to impair their ability to use the wings to return for at least a few hours. After banishing three angels in Reading Is Fundamental, Dean Winchester stated that they had "three, four hours tops" before the angels could return from their banishment. With the loss of their wings, the angels have to make their way back from wherever they end up banished to by other means.
The sigil is shown to blast the angels to other locations on Earth, though not necessarily the same location when multiple angels are banished. When Castiel was banished with the sigil in Point of No Return and Reading Is Fundamental, he did not appear to end up with the angels he was banished with. In the former case, Castiel's banishment sent him from California to off the coast of Louisiana while the latter ended up with him traveling from Indiana to Perth, Australia. However, when hit with Lady Toni Bevell's variation sigil, he only ended up about three hours away from where he was originally banished from.
While several variations of the sigil have appeared, they have all had the same effect on the angels within their radius.
When an angel uses the sigil on another angel, the user angel is not banished as seen in Lucifer Rising.
When Castiel carved the sigil into his own chest before activating it, he was banished along with the other four angels within the blast radius. When he awoke, his powers were gone, but his grace had already been fading at this point so its unclear if Castiel losing his powers is an effect of his using the sigil in such a way.
The sigil can apparently banish up to at least six angels at once as the Winchesters considered using it to banish six attacking angels in The Bad Place. However, it was not used as they realized that they didn't have time to try it if the angels got past their warding.
VariationsEditAll in the Family, Metatron used a modified version of the symbol on The Darkness. The main symbol had two circles on the edges, while the outside shapes were absent. When activated, the sigil had the same blasting of light effect, but was completely ineffective against the Darkness who was just amused by the attempt.
In Alpha and Omega, Lady Toni Bevell used a modified version of the symbol on Castiel. It has similar shape like previously Metatron used, but slightly tilted. When activated, the sigil had the same blasting of light effect and much faster. In Keep Calm and Carry On its shown that the sigil blasted Castiel into a field about three hours away from Lebanon, Kansas where it was used on him. This variation appears to have a lesser effect than the regular sigil as Castiel ended up only a few hours distance from where he was banished rather than thousands of miles away as he did in Two Minutes to Midnight and Reading Is Fundamental. This variation's only effect appears to be to blast the angel out of the location the sigil was used in as Castiel was not otherwise stunned by it nor were his powers effected.In Lily Sunder Has Some Regrets, Dean drew a variation of the banishing sigil to banish Ishim. Dean's new banishing sigil, however, was very different than the standard version he commonly used. It appeared as a circle seal with three enochian glyphs. However, he doesn't use it when Ishim warned that in Castiel's weakened state, he might not survive a banishing.
- Season 4
- Season 5
- Season 6
- Season 7
- Season 9
- Season 11
- Season 12
- Season 13
- Season 14
- Anna Milton was the first to show Sam and Dean this sigil. Ironically, they would later use it against Anna herself in The Song Remains the Same.
- In some of the symbol's later appearances, the sigil had less intricate designs, but were shown to be just as effective.
- So far they have used it at least once every season except seasons 8 and 10 since it was introduced.
- Castiel is the angel who is most banished by the sigil; nine times if Lucifer's banishment while possessing Castiel is counted.
- Dean has used the sigil the most, having banished angels five times with it. Castiel uses it three times successfully and at least once unsuccessfully. It is unknown if he managed to use the sigil he drew in The Rapture successfully or not. Sam has only banished angels twice.
- While Dean has banished more angels with the sigil, the three times Sam has banished an angel has been a significant angel enemy: Anna Milton, Lucifer and an alternate timeline Castiel.
- In Keep Calm and Carry On, its shown that the sigil blasts the angel affected by it somewhere else on the planet where they appear in the form of a comet or meteor. This is also indicated in Two Minutes to Midnight and Reading Is Fundamental where Castiel ends up on a fishing boat in Louisiana and Perth, Australia respectively after being hit by a sigil.
- The size of the sigil doesn't seem to affect the power of the spell since Sam used a smaller sized sigil to banish Lucifer who was the most powerful angel the sigil has ever been used to banish. Sam also uses a small sigil when he banishes Lily and Conrad.
- In Lost & Found, when Sam banishes Conrad, the banishment causes the angel blade he is holding to remain behind. Once Conrad is gone, the angel blade drops to the ground in the cell Conrad was standing in. This is a never before seen effect of the banishing sigil.
- The sigil's range appears to vary somewhat. In Heaven and Hell and Reading Is Fundamental, the sigil banished angels in the room connected to the wall it was painted upon. However, in I Think I'm Gonna Like It Here, it banished the Farmer Angel and the Kim Schortz Angel in the hallway outside of Sam's hospital room while not banishing Gadreel who is feet away inside the room. In Lost & Found, the sigil banished two angels in one room, but failed to also banish Miriam, albeit while Miriam was a couple of rooms away.
- In both Lost & Found and Lebanon, Sam created the sigil upon the floor of the room he was in using the blood from his injuries from his fight with the attacking angels.