The Grigori (from Greek egrgoroi, "The Watchers") are, in one popular version, a group of fallen angels described in Biblical apocrypha who mated with mortal women, giving rise to a race of hybrids known as the Nephilim, who are described as giants in Genesis 6:4. A different idea of the Grigori appears in some traditions of Italian witchcraft where the Grigori are said to come from ancient stellar lore. References to angelic Grigori appear in the books of Enoch and Jubilees. In Hebrew they are known as the Irin, "Watchers," found mentioned in the Old Testament Book of Daniel (chapter 4).
"These are the names of their chiefs: Samyaza, who was their leader, Urakabarameel, Akibeel, Tamiel, Ramuel, Danel, Azkeel, Saraknyal, Asael, Armers, Batraal, Anane, Zavebe, Samsaveel, Ertael, Turel, Yomyael, Azazyel (also known as Azazel). These were the prefects of the two hundred angels, and the remainder were all with them." (1Enoch 7:9)
In Enoch, the Watchers are angels apparently dispatched to Earth simply to watch over the people. They soon begin to lust for the human women they see, and at the prodding of their leader Samyaza, they defect en masse to marry and live among men. The children produced by these relationships are the Nephilim, savage giants who pillage the earth and endanger humanity. Samyaza, Azazel, and the others become corrupt, and teach their human hosts to make metal weapons, cosmetics, and other necessities of civilization that had been kept secret. But the people are dying and cry to the heavens for help. God sends the Great Flood to rid the earth of the Nephilim, but sends Uriel to warn Noah so as not to eradicate the human race. The Grigori are bound "in the valleys of the Earth" until Judgment Day. (See Jude 1:6)
"When men began to multiply on earth and daughters were born to them, the sons of GOd saw how beautiful the daughters of man were, and so they took for their wives as many of them as they chose. Then the Lord said: "My spirit shall not remain in man forever, since he is but flesh. His days shall comprise one hundred and twenty years." At that time the Nephilim appeared on earth (as well as later), after the sons of God had intercourse with the daughters of man, who bore them sons. They were the heroes of old, the men of renown." (https://nordan.daynal.org/wiki/index.php?title=Book_of_genesis#Chapter_.6 Genesis Genesis 6:1-4])
The Book of Jubilees adds further details about the Watchers. While "Watchers" or "Sentinels" are mentioned alongside the "holy ones" in the Book of Daniel, it is doubtful they have any connection to the Grigori. The angels were fairly popular in Jewish folklore, which often describes them as looking like large human beings that never sleep and remain forever silent. While there are good and bad Watchers, most stories revolve around the evil ones that fell from grace when they took "the daughters of man" as their mates.
References to other Grigori
In the early stellar cults of Mesopotamia there were four "royal" Stars (known as Lords) which were called the Watchers. Each one of these stars "ruled" over one of the four cardinal points common to Astrology. This particular system would date from approximately 3000 BC. The star Aldebaran, when it marked the Vernal Equinox, held the position of Watcher of the East. Regulus, marking the Summer Solstice, was Watcher of the South. Antares, marking the Autumn Equinox, was Watcher of the West. Fomalhaut, marking the Winter Solstice, was Watcher of the North. In the star myths the Watchers themselves were depicted as gods who guarded the Heavens and the Earth. Their nature, as well as their "rank", was altered by the successive lunar and solar cults that replaced the older stellar cults.
Eventually the Greeks reduced the Watchers to the gods of the four winds
Earlier mystical Hebrew sects organized the Watchers into an Archangel hierarchy. According to this system the Watchers were ruled over by four great Watchers known as Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, and Auriel. In the Old Testament (Daniel 4: 13 17) there is reference made to the Irin, or Watchers, which appear to be an order of angels. In early Hebrew lore the Irin were a high order of angels that sat on the supreme Judgment Council of the Heavenly Court. In the Apocryphal Books of Enoch and Jubilees, the Watchers were sent to Earth to teach law and justice to humankind. The most common associations found in various texts on Medieval magic regarding the Watchers are as follows:
1. Araqiel: taught the signs of the earth. 2. Armaros: taught the resolving of enchantments. 3. Azazel: taught the making of weapons of war. 4. Barqel: taught astrology. 5. Ezequeel: taught the knowledge of the clouds. 6. Gadreel: taught the art of cosmetics. 7. Kokabeel: taught the mystery of the Stars. 8. Penemue: taught writing. 9. Sariel: taught the knowledge of the Moon. 10. Semjaza: taught Herbal enchantments. 11. Shamshiel: taught the signs of the Sun.
It is these same angels who are referred to as the Sons of God in the Book of Genesis. According to Christian belief their sins filled the Earth with violence and the world was destroyed as a result of their intervention. Richard Cavendish, in his book The Powers of Evil, makes references to the possibilities of the Giants mentioned in Genesis 6:4, being the Giants or Titans of Greek Mythology. He also lists the Watchers as the fallen angels which magicians call forth in ceremonial magic. Cavendish mentions that the Watchers were so named because they were stars, the "eyes of night."
Christian theologians joined the Watchers to an evil class of fallen angels known as the principalities of the air. St. Paul, in the New Testament, calls the Fallen Angels "principalities": "for we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers...against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in High Places". It was also St. Paul who called Satan "The prince of power of the air", and thus made the connection of Satan (himself connected to "a star", Isaiah 14: 12 14) and etheric beings, for they were later known as demons and as principalities of the Air.
This theme was later developed by a French theologian of the 16th Century, named Sinistrari, who spoke of beings existing between Humans and Angels. He called them demons and associated them with the Elemental natures of Earth, Air, Fire and Water. This, however, was not a new concept but was taught by certain Gnostic sects in the early days of Christianity. Clement of Alexandria, influenced by Hellenistic cosmology, attributed the movement of the Stars and the control of the four elements to angelic beings. Sinistrari attributed bodies of fire, air, earth, and water to these Beings, and concluded that the Watchers were made of fire and air. Cardinal Newman, writing in the mid 1800s, proposed that certain angels existed who were neither totally good nor evil, and had only "partially fallen" from the Heavens.