|Former Affiliation|| Survey Corps|
104th Trainees Squad
|Species||Human, Titan Shifter|
|Manga||A Dull Glow in the Midst of Despair|
|Anime||Shining Dimly in the Midst of Despair|
|Anime|| Saki Fujita (Japanese)|
Elizabeth Maxwell (English)
Ymir (ユミル Yumiru?) is a graduate of the 104th Trainees Squad and former member of the Survey Corps. She has the ability to transform into a Titan and has knowledge concerning the true nature of Titans and the history of humanity.
Ymir is a tall, slender young woman with parted hair often styled into a ponytail and intimidating eyes. In the manga she has more disheveled looking black hair and gray eyes, while in the anime she has straighter, longer brown hair and golden eyes, as well as a slight tan.
Ymir's Titan form is considerably smaller than most Titans, about 6 or 7 meters. She has rugged hair, black small eyes, small ears, sharp fangs, and claws, allowing her to easily climb trees and tear into enemy flesh. Unlike other titan shifters, the body is not well proportioned because her head is too big. Unlike the Female Titan, her titan possesses no distinct feminine features.
Initially, Ymir appears selfish, cynical, uncooperative, exploitative and confrontational, but later reveals kindness, especially around Historia Reiss. She has often criticizes people for being untrue to themselves, as when she berated Sasha Blouse, who developed an extremely polite and formal way of speaking to hide her native accent.
She is a mysterious and complex character, holding her many secrets close. While not completely willing to trust Reiner and Bertolt, she betrays humanity in exchange for Krista's safety. Little is known about her past or motivations, other than the fact she wishes to protect Krista at any cost.
Oddly, her personality appears to be a foil of Krista. Due to Krista's dark past, Krista often pretends to be a sweet girl so that others will remember her fondly. However, her true nature is darker, depressed, and lonely. Ymir's true persona appears to be much more selfless and quite emotional. This is shown when Ymir accepts Reiner and Bertolt's offer to return to their homeland in exchange for a pardon. It should also be noted that she has shown much regret over eating Reiner and Bertolt's friend (even though she didn't have control over herself during her time as a Titan).
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Ymir's personal history is shrouded in mystery, with her keeping her many secrets closely guarded. What little she reveals suggests a troubled past, comparing herself to Krista as a person despised by others.
|I thought it would've been better if I'd never been born. The world hated me just for existing. To bring happiness to many people...I died. But—when I did, I wished for something from the bottom of my heart. If I could be born again...I wanted to live my next life for no one but myself..I wished...so hard.|
|— Ymir about her past|
She states that she "stole" the Titan's Power from the group Reiner, Bertolt, and Annie belong to and spent six decades wandering outside Wall Maria as a Titan. During this time, she retained little awareness or memory but describes it as having been an "endless nightmare". It was in 845 that she encountered Reiner, Bertolt, and Marcel as they were making their way towards Wall Maria in order to infiltrate it. She attacked Reiner and ended up devouring Marcel after the boy pushed his friend to safety. Soon after this event, she regained her consciousness and human form. She would spend the next two years living within Wall Sina, sneaking about and spying on humanity. It was during this time that she overheard conversation between members of the Wall Cult, and learned about Historia Reiss. Her interest in the other girl led her to enlist in the military, hoping to use her to gain a pardon for her crimes. Ilse Langnar, a member of the Survey Corps that resembled Ymir, encountered a Titan that identified itself as one of "Ymir's people". This Titan confused the two women, and bowed before Ilse while referring to her as "Ymir-sama". Ilse's notes on the encounter were later discovered by Hange Zoë and are the first hints of Ymir's true nature.
Ymir graduated in the 104th class outside the top 10, which Krista deems that she deserved to be there more than her. It is implied that she intentionally gave less than her full effort so that Krista could have the 10th slot. After graduation, she followed Krista into the Survey Corps.
Ymir was in the Trost District when the Colossal Titan broke down the gate. She was part of the squad that discovered a catatonic Armin, and mocked him upon learning that he was the only survivor. This resulted in a brief and heated exchange with Connie Springer, before Krista stepped in to mediate. In response, she requested that Krista marry her once the battle was over. She was later among the squads able to retreat over the Wall when the order was given, and waited on standby for further orders.
Ymir is one of the Survey Corps members taken outside Wall Sina by Mike Zacharius and disarmed of her equipment on suspicion of being a potential accomplice to Annie Leonhart. When Titans mysteriously appear within Wall Rose and the rookies are sent to warn the nearby villages, Ymir recommends to Krista that they run away, but Krista refuses.
After the rookies take refuge inside Castle Utgard, Ymir comes under suspicion by Reiner when she is able to read the label of the tuna can in another language correctly and he comes to suspect that she may know more than what she's letting on. When the castle comes under attack by Titans capable of moving at night, Ymir has a flashback of her and Krista helping their friend, Daz. Ymir reveals that she was left on the street and had to go around and borrow money. She told Krista that she should try and start a new life instead of trying to kill herself. Ymir left Krista and managed to help Daz. Returning to the present time, Ymir jumps from the tower and cuts herself, triggering her Titan transformation. She begins to battle the Titans to the shock of her peers.
Ymir fights the Titans strategically, aiming for the nape of their necks and showing great focus. However, while being fast and vicious, her Titan form is no larger or stronger than most Titans, and she is soon caught. The Titans attack viciously and Ymir reaches for the wall but consciously releases it as the heavily damaged tower shows signs of falling over. Krista reasons that with her power, Ymir could have easily escaped alone, and that she is putting her life on the line to fight for the recruits survival. Ymir then breaks the tower, burying the Titans under the rubble. She rescues her friends and is shown to be capable of coherent speech in her Titan form.
When the Titans begin to emerge from the rubble, Ymir launches at them immediately and puts herself at risk once again. However, she is pushed to her limit and all other Titans begin to tear her body apart and devour her. Her human body is shown to slowly emerge from her Titan flesh while in a state of unconsciousness. The arrival of Hange Zoë's squad saves her, and she is quickly given medical treatment. Before passing out, Krista reveals to her that her true name is "Historia".
Later on however, Ymir, along with Eren, was kidnapped by Reiner and Bertolt. She regains consciousness before Eren, though both are left recovering from serious injuries and therefore unable to transform. When Eren attempts to fight, she counsels him against this and points out that they are surrounded by Titans and at a huge disadvantage since their captors are armed and uninjured. She asks Reiner to start talking, as he had promised once Eren awoke.
Realizing they have no choice but to wait until nightfall, the group settles in for a long wait. When Ymir asks for water, complaining about how long its been since they had something to drink, Reiner begins to act strangely. Eren becomes angry about this, but Ymir accurately determines that Reiner's mental state has deteriorated as a result of his inability to cope with his guilt.
Recovering from his episode, Reiner extends the offer for Ymir to join their side. She initially rejects this offer, stating that they don't trust her and she doesn't trust them. But Reiner claims they can trust her, since her only goal is to protect Krista and their goals align since he also wants to protect her. Afterwards, Ymir agrees to ally with Reiner and Bertolt, and refuses to answer Eren's questions.
Reiner and Bertolt notice a signal flare, and begin preparing to flee the advancing rescue party. While Reiner subdues Eren, Bertolt confronts Ymir over her past and the fact she killed one of their comrades. She confesses to not having any memory of that time, but apologizes to him for it. Furthermore, she reveals that she spent 60 years living in the wilderness as a normal Titan and only regained her mind and human form five years ago. She describes her time trapped in her Titan form as an "endless nightmare".
As they begin to flee through the forest, Ymir notices the signal flares and realizes Krista has come to rescue her. She demands that they kidnap Krista now, and when they refuse she begins to attack Bertolt, threatening to fight them to the death if necessary. Even though doing so may endanger Krista's life, Ymir states she's a horrible person that wants to see her one more time.
The rescue team notices a light in the forest, and shortly afterwards encounter Ymir in her Titan form. She ignores all attempts to question her about what happened, looking around until she spots Krista. To everyone's shock, Ymir leaps forward and captures Krista whole in her mouth, immediately fleeing into the trees to rejoin Reiner and Bertolt. After Reiner transforms, she climbs onto his back and the group begin to flee into the wilderness with the soldiers in hot pursuit.
Still hanging onto Reiner's shoulder, she spits Krista out and partially emerges from her Titan form, apologizing for what she's done. Krista initially assumes Ymir is being forced to cooperate with the traitors, and tries to convince her to release her. Ymir hesitates visibly, at which point Bertolt yells at her and asks if she intends to abandon Krista.
Breaking down, Ymir confesses to Krista that she once "stole" the Titan's power from Reiner and Bertolt's people and has been on the run from them since then. And in order to save herself, she intends to hand Krista over them in order to be pardoned for her crimes. Calling her "Historia", she begs the other girl to save her. To her shock, Krista smiles and promises to always be on her side.
When several soldiers catch up and begin to launch hooks into the Armored Titan, Ymir pulls them out and drops the soldiers to the ground. She is ambushed and partially blinded by Mikasa, who violently threatens to kill anyone that gets in her way. The two briefly fight, before Krista intervenes and tries to plead with Mikasa to stop. However, Mikasa threatens to kill them both if they get in her way, forcing Krista and Ymir to back off. They observe the confrontation between the former friends, and Ymir looks thoughtful as she listens to Bertolt's confession.
However, Erwin Smith arrives with a swarm of Titans and forces the others to retreat for a time. The Armored Titan charges into the oncoming horde, with Ymir barely able to hang on. They are quickly surrounded and overwhelmed, and Krista is quickly attacked by one of the many Titans. This drives Ymir into action, beginning to fight against the other Titans to defend her. The soldiers look on in horror, but quickly take advantage of the chaos to mount a second attack.
In the ensuing battle, Ymir and Krista become separated from the others. A larger Titan manages to overpower her, but she is rescued by Krista who proudly declares this her first Titan kill. Connie arrives on the scene, snatching Krista up onto his horse and retreating from the battle. Ymir follows beside them, seemingly abandoning any further attempts to aid Reiner and Bertolt in favor of immediate survival. Much to their surprise, Connie expresses his faith in Ymir and points out that she only takes things seriously when it comes to protecting Krista.
During the chaos of the battle, Ymir manages to get the drop on Erwin Smith and charges in to attack him. She expresses anger at him for ruining everything, but at the last moment she instead rescues him from another Titan. As she finishes it off, Connie and Krista catch up with her. Krista uses her gear to jump onto Ymir's head, confronting her over having lied to protect her once again. She declares that they should live only for themselves, and proclaims that she will never fear anything as long as Ymir is at her side. This declaration renews Ymir's spirits, and the pair charge into battle together to face the Titan horde.
When Eren's power as the coordinate manifests, Ymir senses it and reacts with surprise. She becomes convinced that this power to control other Titans is the reason Reiner and the others were willing to risk their lives to obtain Eren. This makes her begin to reconsider her options, wondering if perhaps she should ally with the Survey Corps instead. She realizes this power could mean a future within the Walls, and also realizes she will not be able to protect Krista on her own.
In the aftermath of the battle, she begins to flee with the surviving soldiers. However, she turns back and hesitates upon hearing Bertolt screaming as he and Reiner desperately attempt to fend off the Titans attacking them. She turns back to Krista, offering a broken apology and reaches out to gently stroke her hair. Without another word, she rushes back into battle and rescues Bertolt from the Titan about to devour him. The others are left to puzzle over her actions, and her fate after being left behind by the soldiers remains unknown.
An epilogue reveals that she survived the battle, and fled with the traitors to the ruins of the Shiganshina District. There, she berates herself for her foolish actions. When questioned about her actions, she states that she knows that Reiner and Bertolt cannot return to their homeland empty handed, and offers herself as a prisoner. Reiner attempts to let her go, but she refuses this kindness and states that she is tired. Bertolt asks why she saved his life, and she responds by expressing her gratitude to them since their actions led to her regaining human form. She claims to be the only one capable of understanding their circumstances, further expressing sympathy as they are "the same" and unable to do anything on their own. Thinking of Historia, she smiles and states that playing "Goddess" isn't so bad, referencing the girl's selfless reputation.
The conversation she had with Bertolt in the Forest was later recalled by Eren, and written down for Hange Zoë. This information proves to be vital, leading Hange to speculate that Titans are able to absorb the abilities of devoured Titan Shifters. By devouring Marcel, Ymir gained his powers and regained her humanity. This leads Hange to further speculate that this may be one reason Titans instinctively seek to devour humans and transformed Titan Shifters.
Ymir is able to transform herself into a Titan of an unspecified height class, about 6 or 7 meters high. Her form is the smallest compared to other shifters' forms, with Annie's being a close second at around 14 meters high.
- Speed: Despite her small size, her Titan form has an above average speed and agility, which makes it easy for her to dispatch multiple enemies in quick succession; she is also able to climb walls and trees. She has claws and pointed teeth which help her to dispatch Titans by biting them in their nape, a tactic used several times by her. Against humans or other shifters in a forest she'd have the advantage, as she can swiftly outmaneuver them. But her size has proven to be a problem, since she was easily overpowered by Titans not long after her transformation at Castle Utgard.
- Partial Transformation: She also possesses the ability to partially emerge from the nape of her Titan form, allowing her to interact with others while still transformed. This shows that she is skillful at controlling her Titan form.
- Regeneration: She has shown the ability to automatically heal any injury and even regrow entire limbs. When she lost her right arm and leg at the battle of Castle Utgard, she was able to regenerate in a matter of hours.
- Communication: While other Titan Shifters are able to regain control of themselves while transformed, she seems to be the only one skilled enough to talk, or at least the only one that has shown it. She seems to find it difficult because she only says limited and short phrases, pausing between the words.
Ymir's Statistics :
- Historia Reiss - She is romantically attracted to Historia, and utterly devoted to her. Her primary goal is to protect her no matter the cost. The two have a strong connection, and deeply trust each other even while keeping secrets. Ymir actively works to discourage Krista's martyr complex, and challenges her to embrace her true identity and live for herself with her head held high.
- Reiner Braun and Bertolt Hoover - Ymir agrees to become their ally, and work with them in exchange for Krista's safety. She expresses that she does not trust them entirely, and believes that even if she cooperates with them, she will eventually be killed by their "warriors". When they attempt to flee without kidnapping Krista, she makes it clear she will fight them to the death if they don't give into her demands. When things look bad, she quickly abandons them and considers leaving them to their fate. However, for an unknown reason she decides to leave Krista behind in order to come to their aid. It is later revealed that she feels a sense of gratitude towards them for accidentally triggering her return to human form, and she states that she is the only one capable of understanding their circumstances, as they are "the same". She further states that she wishes to "return what she took from them" and insists on returning to their homeland as their prisoner.
- Connie Springer - Connie is an antithesis to Ymir; Ymir is wily as Connie is obtuse. Ymir is selfish as Connie is empathetic. Connie has many friends as Ymir only has Krista as her friend. Inevitably they have antagonistic acquaintance, often exchanging verbal barbs with each other. They have repeatedly clashed (one incident almost physically), as Ymir often made him the target of mockery and he called her pejorative names due to her haughty attitude. Even so, it wouldn't be right to say that they are on completely bad terms; as Connie is quick to defend her when she appears before the soldiers in Titan form. Later, when he encounters her again during battle, he tells Krista that Ymir only acts seriously when it comes to protecting her, showing that even after her apparent betrayal, he still believes in her.
- Sasha Blouse - Ymir is not ashamed to take advantage of other people, especially if they are naive and simple-minded. She initially helps Sasha back to bed after she collapsed in exhaustion, and uses this to make the other girl feel indebted to her. It's shown that she often pushed her chores onto Sasha, but she also was the one to confront Sasha over hiding her real dialect/accent and demand that she not be ashamed of her roots.
- Eren Yeager - Ymir and Eren had few interactions prior to being kidnapped by Reiner and Bertolt, with him admitting he didn't know her well at all. They quickly come to mistrust each other, due to Ymir's secretive nature. Ymir is critical of his short-sighted viewpoint and states that she cannot rely upon him for anything, instead choosing to side with the other Titan Shifters.
- Her name Ymir is the very same as a primeval being in Norse mythology who is the progenitor of all Jotun, or ice giants, and the first living being. This could imply a connection to the Titans of Attack on Titan. Ymir means "the scream".
- The official website mentions Ymir is in love with Historia (Krista).
- Ymir is the only known character that understands the "Unknown Writing" on a can of herring in Castle Utgard.
- Though she first appeared in chapter 5 of the manga, she is not named until chapter 36.
- Ymir spent 60 years as an ordinary Titan, and did not begin aging again until she regained her human form. This suggests that while Ymir is physically and mentally 17, her chronological age is most likely between 70 and 80 years of age.
- In the anime, she is given the name "Freckles" (そばかす Sobakasu?) during the credits.
- Due to Ymir's Titan form lacking an official name, fans have given it the unofficial name of "Dancing Titan" based on the notion that Ymir's Titan form is literally remarked with the phrase "the Titan dances" (踊る巨人 Odoru Kyojin).
- Ymir is the tallest female character in the series.
- In the original draft for the series, Ymir slacking off to give Krista the 10th rank is discussed immediately after graduation. In the published version, Krista does not confront her about this until much later.
- At the series panel for Animagic 2014, producer George Wada confirmed that Ymir and Krista do have romantic feelings for one another.