Ymir Fritz’s Backstory Explains the 7 Mysteries of Attack on Titan

Digging into the tragic story of Ymir Fritz answers the mysteries that have intrigued The attack of the Titans followers since the Colossal Titan first peeked its massive head above Wall Maria. When Grisha Jaeger promised that the contents of his basement would quench Eren’s curiosity about the outside world, he wasn’t exaggerating. The Survey Corps finally entered its basement at The attack of the Titans season 3, only to find that their country was located on Paradise Island – a nation ostracized from the rest of the world. More importantly, Eren and his friends heard about Ymir – the young girl who first wielded the power of the Titans and whose lineage is shared by everyone on their island.


Alas, Grisha only knew the version of Ymir’s story approved by the history books – a sanitized, almost religious account, annoyingly light on hard details. What Actually happened to Ymir Fritz is told in The attack of the Titans episode 80, where the Jaeger brothers are still bickering over which of them can command his fearsome Founding Titan abilities. Zeke’s royal heritage gives him the edge, but Eren appeals to the pent-up anger of Ymir, conquering her. The attack of the Titans Flashback footage from Episode 80 fills in the gaps on how Ymir got into this predicament and why Eren’s calls ring out so strongly.

Related: How Attack On Titan Hidden Eren’s True Titan Attack Power In Plain Sight

Set 2000 years in the past, Ymir Fritz’s backstory also solves a litany of mysteries surrounding Hajime Isayama. The attack of the Titans mythology. Here are the seven major revelations.

Attack On Titan Finally Reveals Its Titan Origin

Ymir's spine in Attack on Titan

From You 80 episodes ago, a Titan first appeared on our television screens, leaving viewers everywhere to wonder how these naked giants with gorgeous limbs came to be. The attack of the Titans has avoided answering this all-important mystery ever since, but Ymir Fritz’s backstory finally delivers the closest thing to a Titan origin that Hajime Isayama is likely to deliver. The power of the Titans was not a blessing from above, nor a pact with the devil; it was something dark and biological harbored deep within the Earth – a primordial strand of insectoid DNA that attached itself to the first living human it came into contact with – a young runaway slave called Ymir. The attack of the Titans never addresses precisely what this spiny creature is, but Kruger’s “source of all life” theory doesn’t look too far.

What the very first Titan looked like in Attack On Titan

Ymir founds Titan in Attack on Titan

The attack of the Titans has, so far, only shown the Founding Titan of Ymir in crude picture books drawn by Eldians and Marleyans with a loose interpretation of historical accuracy. Luckily, Episode 80 reveals the full Ymir Founder transformation, and the design incorporates elements from other Titan-shifters we’ve encountered along the way. Ymir shares the female Titan’s body shape, but her stature is closer to colossal. Its claws are reminiscent of the Jaw Titan, but its muscles are sharpened like those of the Attack. The only feature unique to the Founder (and shared with Eren’s own Founding Titan transformation) is a large external ribcage, which mirrors the insect-like spine that started it all.

Ymir Fritz is driven by love

Eren and Ymir in Attack on Titan

The attack of the Titans never before attributed specific motivation to Ymir Fritz. Was she a conqueror? A ruler? Did she act out of loyalty or was she a misunderstood revolutionary? The attack of the Titans Episode 80 proves that Ymir Fritz was driven by love – twisted, tragic, venomous love, but love nonetheless. When a young pre-Titan Ymir watches the king marry, she is in awe of the couple’s connection, trying to understand this emotion that was never personally shown to her. After becoming King Fritz’s only armed wife/childbearer, Ymir developed a warped love for her captor – Stockholm Syndrome in the extreme – and these feelings not only kept her from disobeying or fighting back ( which she could have done at any time), they forced Ymir to protect King Fritz with his own life. All along The attack of the TitansYmir was ruled by a misguided sense of love – until Eren Jaeger inspired her to finally break free.

Related: Attack Of Titan Episode 79 Dead Character Cameos Explained

How Ymir Fritz Died (Despite the Founding Titan)

Death of Ymir in Attack on Titan

The attack of the Titans already confirmed that Ymir died 13 years after inheriting the Founding Titan, placing the dreaded “curse of Ymir” on her descendants. Exactly how such a powerful monster met its fate has been puzzling The attack of the Titans fans for a while, as the Marleyans weren’t exactly walking around on 3-D maneuvering gear back then. As seen in Ymir’s flashback, she was shot while protecting her king from an enemy’s spear. Fritz himself points out that this single blow shouldn’t be enough to thwart the Founding Titan, but Ymir dies anyway…because she choose at. Although she loved King Fritz, Ymir’s anger at being oppressed burned, and choosing not to heal herself was a way to escape this terrible existence. The painful irony is how Ymir’s consciousness ends up inside the Paths, where she is forced to continue serving the Fritz family anyway.

How The Founding Titan’s Powers Were Divided

Armored Titan

Both the Eldia and Marley history books share a significant blank space – how the one Founding Titan of Ymir split into the Nine Titans. Both parties generally agree that this separation occurred, but both also avoid accurately describing How? ‘Or’ What. Were the Titans reborn in the descendants of Ymir? Did Ymir graciously share her power before she died? No, Ymir’s children ate his corpse. Desperate not to lose his precious Titan strength, King Fritz put Ymir on the children’s menu, and the Titan power survived. Because Ymir Fritz was eaten by his three daughters, the Titans’ powers first separated and then further diluted until they became the Nine Titans. The attack of the Titans is famous for – all connected to their predecessor inside the Paths.

Eldia and Marley’s conflicting stories were both wrong

attack on titan ymir founder titan

Since the introduction of the warring nations of Eldia and Marley, The attack of the Titans presented two very different fictional stories. Either Eldia was a benevolent empire that used Ymir’s Titan powers to develop the modern world, betrayed by the evil Marleyans who sought this power for themselves; or Eldia was a cruel and oppressive regime rightly overthrown after causing untold bloodshed. Ymir’s flashback in The attack of the Titans episode 80 shows grains of truth in both accounts. The Eldians were vile conquerors from the very beginning, and only got worse with Ymir on their side. Although they do laying the foundations of modern society (“what have the Eldians ever done for us?”), this power was mainly used for great evils.

To the other side of The attack of the Titanshistorical coin, Ymir was never a devil – she was a pawn acting in the name of a cruel king, but Marley perpetuated this lie to stoke the fear of an entire race, rather than just its rulers. As we already know, Marley’s intentions weren’t exactly noble either, as they pursued the same path of Titan domination as Eldia.

Related: Every Grisha Memory Eren & Zeke Visit In Attack On Titan Episode 79

Ymir was not technically an Eldian

Ymir in Attack on Titan

In The attack of the TitansIn Ymir Fritz’s timeline, she is hailed as the mother of all Eldians, who literally refer to themselves as “Ymir’s subjects”. The attack of the Titans has often questioned whether Ymir really is the woman her predecessors believe in, and sure enough, episode 80 proves that Eldian society is all based on a lie. Ymir was originally a lowly villager, whose unidentified home was ransacked by a violent tribe calling themselves “Eldians”. It was only after gaining the power of the Titan that Ymir was forced to bear King Fritz’s children. She may have become the “mother” of modern Eldia and the ancestor of her royal line, but as a slave captured in a foreign village, Ymir was never truly considered Eldian in her time. She was a vessel for the future prosperity of the Eldian Empire…but that doesn’t look good in the history books.

More: How Titans Are REALLY Made In Attack On Titan

The attack of the Titans streams Sundays on Funimation, Crunchyroll, and Hulu.


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