|Powers and Abilities||Can alter human perception. Feeds on its victim's brains with a thin, organic spike that protrudes from the wrist.|
|Appearance||Humanoid with sagging, decaying flesh. Can appear human.|
|Episode(s)|| 5.11 Sam, Interrupted|
6.19 Mommy Dearest (as a hybrid)
A Scottish word, first used in English in 1513. A wraith is an apparition, vision, or double of another living person. Its appearance is commonly seen as an omen that the person being doubled is about to die.
Wraiths are humanoid creatures whose true nature - including their sagging, decaying flesh - can be seen only in reflection. They appear human except for the long, organic spike that they sheathe in their wrist and use to feed on their victims. According to hunter Martin Creaser, wraiths "crack open skulls and feed on brain juice," and the wraith that Sam and Dean encounter has taken to feeding on victims in a mental institution not only to avoid discovery, but also because the chemicals that flood their brains are apparently delicious.
Powers and Abilities
- Can alter the perceptions of any person they touch, making them hallucinate or unbalancing them emotionally.
- Can feed on a person's brains through an organic spike that extends from their wrist.
- Silver - Piercing a wraith through the heart with silver will kill it. Silver also burns them when it touches the skin.
- Mirrors - A wraith's true form is revealed in a mirror.
Sam and Dean hunt a wraith disguised as a nurse in a mental institution. The wraith, who is known by the name Karla, can alter human perceptions with a touch, and she uses this ability to amplify her victims' mental imbalances, causing their brains to produce more chemicals like dopamine, which she likes to consume. She feeds on her victims' brains through a thin, organic spike that emerges from her wrist. She is about to feed on Sam when she is interrupted and killed by Dean, who stabs her with a silver-plated letter opener.
In Grants Pass, Oregon, Eve is experimenting with creating hybrid monsters. On examination of some of the hybrids in a bar, Dean finds they have strange hybrid attributes - one creatures has vampire teeth, but also the spike of a wraith protruding from its wrist. Dean dubs these hybrids Jefferson Starships.
Ennis Ross briefly sees the reflection of a wraith named Marv, who was serving as a body guard to Sal Lassiter, when he goes to confront Sal and the maître d at the restaurant where he planned to propose to his girlfriend.
In the spin-off novel Supernatural: Heart of the Dragon, it is mentioned that the first creature Samuel Campbell (Sam and Dean's maternal grandfather) killed as a teenager was a wraith. Samuel managed to kill it before it tried to feed on him, but not before his best friend fell victim to the wraith.
Wraiths in Lore
A wraith is commonly described as a ghost or spectre, and has been more specifically defined as "the exact likeness of a living person seen usually just before death as an apparition."
Wraith is a Scottish dialectal word for "ghost, spectre, apparition." It came to be used in Scottish Romanticist literature, and acquired the more general or figurative sense of "portent, omen." In 18th- to 19th-century Scottish literature, it was also applied to aquatic spirits. The word has no commonly accepted etymology; the Oxford English Dictionary notes "of obscure origin" only. An association with the verb writhe was the etymology favored by J.R.R. Tolkien. Tolkien's use of the word in the naming of the creatures known as the Ringwraiths has influenced later usage in fantasy literature.