There’s probably one thing you’d love about Attack on Titan — the mystery of the Titan Powers. Of course, this mystery has been resolved and answered as the series comes to a close. Undeniably, there are still a lot of questions running through your mind about the history and background of the Titans.
While there are many strong characters in both the manga and anime, the reveal of the Founding Titan was the highlight of the series. Many fans cheered on as they witnessed the power of Eren’s Founding Titan in the last chapters of the story.
The Founding Titan (始祖の巨人 Shiso no Kyojin) is the first of all Titans. As the name suggests, all the Nine Titan Powers originated from them. Do you want to know more about the Founding Titan? Luckily, we’ve got your back! This blog will discuss everything you need to know about the Founding Titan — from its background, abilities, and even exciting facts! Note: spoilers ahead!
Bottom Line Up Front
While the Founding Titan is the first Titan with whom all other Titan Powers originated, its power and full potential were revealed late in the series. Around 2,000 years before the main plot starts, Ymir Fritz became the first Founding Titan.
As the Founding Titan, she has unique abilities and untapped potential, including Titan creation and control, cognition command, telepathy, and even clairvoyance. This Titan Power is unique; only those with royal blood and not everyone can wield the Founding Titan true powers.
Who is the Inheritor of the Founding Titan?
Throughout the story, there were several inheritors of the Founding Titan; the most popular ones are Ymir Fritz and Eren Jaeger.
Ymir Fritz was the first Founding Titan, and she acquired the power out of sheer luck. The Royal Family of Fritz passed down this Titan Power from their bloodline. Here’s a list of all the inheritors from the past to the latest:
- Ymir Fritz.
- Karl Fritz, The First Reiss King, and 145th King of Eldia.
- Rod and Uri Reiss’s father.
- Uri Reiss.
- Frieda Reiss (niece of Uri Reiss).
- Grisha Jaeger.
- Eren Jaeger (son of Grisha Jaeger).
Currently, Eren Jaeger holds the power of the Founding Titan; but he cannot fully wield the powers of the Founding Titan. He needs to be in contact with the royal bloodline (in this case, his brother Zeke Yeager).
Bloodline Necessity: Wielding The Powers to Its Full Potential
While anyone can inherit the Founding Titan, only those from the Fritz or Reiss royal families can wield and control its true power. But how about Eren? Well, he can still use the Founding Titan by coming in contact with a Titan, either Pure or Titan Shifter, with royal blood. This is evident when Eren used the said powers after striking the hand of Dina Fritz’s Pure Titan. Because of this, he devised a plan with his brother, Zeke Yeager, who has a royal bloodline. They’ve agreed to come in contact with their master plan.
However, some memories can be restored when the inheritor touches a human of royal blood who has no Titan power. This happened with Historia and Rod, resurfacing the memories of Grisha Jaeger’s struggle to obtain the Founding Titan.
Founding Titan: Appearance and Abilities
Like every Titan Power, the appearance of the Founding Titan is primarily influenced by their inheritor. This section lists the most prominent features and attributes of the different inheritors.
There’s no doubt that Ymir Fritz’s Titan was enormous. She also looked rather feminine with long thick legs and a slender body. However, her ribs are also protruding outside her body. Her Titan’s face was skeletal and possessed no apparent skin and muscles. She only has a skull head with no facial features such as eyes and nose.
Karl Fritz’ Titan donned long shaggy hair and incredibly sharp teeth. His lower limbs are muscular and thick, while his upper body is quite skeletal. However, his ribs are obvious while tucked in his thin skin. His build is similar to the Beast Titan as he had thin and long arms.
Surprisingly, Rod Reiss’ Founding Titan was considered an Abnormal Titan. It possessed nothing like his human form. Despite being abnormal, it is the largest Titan ever known as it is twice the height of the Colossal Titan. His body is disproportionate, possessing an incredibly large torso yet little limbs and legs. Because of this, he could not stand upright and moved around by crawling on four limbs.
Aside from that, his body was primarily skeletal; the crawling movement also wore away the front half of his face and torso. His Titan also has similar attributes to the Colossal Titan; it moves extremely slow and generates heat, causing any surrounding object or human to burn and spontaneously combust. As he crawled to cross the wall, he inevitably exposed his ribs and internal organs.
Frieda’s Founding Titan was only 13m tall. She had a more feminine build than Ymir’s; her shoulder-length hair probably gave her a more familiar look. She had large eyes with distinguishable dark loops within them and a somewhat skeletal nose. Her Titan body features muscular and toned lines, just like the Female Titan.
Eren’s Founding Titan was unique from the previous Founding Titans; it was also not akin to his Attack Titan Form. Despite being shrouded by the steam from the Wall Titans, you can immediately notice its significantly enormous size.
Its towering height is impressive, standing taller than the Wall Titans. However, he has a peculiar body. At a glance, you’d notice how his backbones and ribs are overarching and extending both upwards and downwards. His pelvis and legs were grossly undersized, yet he still stands taller than any other Titan.
Because of the ribcage’s massive size, his upper body looked quite proportional to his legs. His whole build was rather skeletal, but his face was covered in the flesh. Still, it was significantly deformed and unrecognizable: his ears and hair were extended, his cheeks were gone, showing his molars. Lastly, his upper body was suspended and supported by fine vertebral knobs.
Like the Nine Titan Shifters, the Founding Titan possesses a unique, innate skill set. They are the most powerful Titans ever known. While their size varies depending on different factors, they’re easily considered the strongest Titans.
If the inheritor is of royal blood, they can turn any Subject of Ymir into a Titan and control their minds and movements. Aside from that, the inheritor of the Founding Titan can also wield its powers without even transforming. Here’s an exhaustive list of their abilities.
Are you wondering how the Wall Titans were created? Well, it’s because of the Founding Titan’s ability to transform Eldians into Titans. They can also decide on their size and make them as massive as the Colossal Titan. Presumably, Karl Fritz wielded this power to create tons of giant Titans and build the three Walls.
Zeke Yeager’s Beast Titan could also transform the Subjects of Ymir by injecting his spinal fluid into them. His screams would trigger the transformation process. Because of this, it was said that Zeke’s Beast Titan possessed a similar ability as the Founding Titan.
Like its Titan Creation ability, the Founding Titan can also control any Titan by screaming. They can make any Titan virtually follow any of their orders without question. However, this ability only affects Pure Titans.
Karl Fritz also used this ability to command the massive Titans to harden and confine themselves. This lead turned the Titans into the walls protecting Paradis Island from any invaders. Aside from that, this ability has become extremely valuable during the ancient war—the Eldians weaponized Titans to fight and slaughter their enemies.
While the ability’s range is unknown, the Fritz’s maximize its potential to develop and build the Paradis Island. Creating the walls was only Karl’s first step in ensuring the peace and order of the island; he made his island livable through this power.
You’d recall Frieda erased Historia’s memory because of her powers as the Founding Titan. Even Karl used this power to wipe out and modify the memories of the Subjects of Ymir about the war.
This ability is deeply connected with Titan Control. Erwin Smith highlights that “Titans are simply transformed humans (specifically, the Subjects of Ymir); therefore, the screams that control the minds of the former should be able to affect the latter as well.”
However, there are instances when the Subjects of Ymir can access these memories through their dreams, somewhat like lucid dreaming. Anyone who is not a Subject of Ymir and members of the Ackermann bloodline is immune to this ability.
There’s no doubt that the Founding Titan has full control of the Subjects of Ymir. This ability is not only limited to giving direction or manipulating their memories. They can also alter the genes and body composition of any Eldian as they wish.
An Eldian King previously used this power to provide physical immunity to all its Subjects due to a rampant epidemic. Zeke also wanted to alter the genetic composition of all the Subjects of Ymir; he wanted them to be sterile. This way, Eldians wouldn’t have to bear any children, and the population would eventually die out.
Because the Founding Titan is the central coordinate and the origin of all the Subjects of Ymir, they can telepathically communicate by connecting their paths with their Subjects. This ability is deemed to be extremely practical in creating different strategies without being noticed by the enemies.
Eren perfectly weaponized this ability when he communicated his plans for the Rumbling of the world among everyone.
Just like the Attack Titan’s memory inheritance ability, the inheritors of the Founding Titan can perceive matters beyond ordinary perception. They can discern future events as if they already happened.
The Founding Titan can also influence the things in the past, all while preserving history. This only means that the inheritors of the Founding Titan can observe time in a multi-linear way: getting a glimpse of the past, present, and future.
All the Titans originated from Ymir Fritz’s Founding Titan. Ymir was simply a little girl who lived in a quaint town enslaved by the Eldians roughly 2,000 before the Common Era. She was a victim of circumstance as she was pinned by the other slaves for something she didn’t do.
Ymir was accused of being negligent and allowing a pig to escape from its holding. Because of this, she received a severe punishment: to be hunted down by the village’s men and dogs. While eluding the chase, she fell into a deep hole, and an alien-like creature gave her the ability to transform into a Titan.
With her newly acquired abilities, Ymir returned to the village and served as a slave under Fritz and the Eldians. Consequently, she bore three daughters: Maria, Rose, and Sina. She helped strengthen Fritz’s empire, yet she only lived thirteen years after acquiring the power of the Founding Titan.
After her death, Fritz desperately forced her daughters to consume Ymir’s corpse to pass on her powers. This plan was successful; her kids became Titans and were tasked to reproduce and cannibalize each other to give the powers of the Founding Titan. During this succession, the powers were divided into the Nine Titan Powers we’ve known today.
Conspiracies on the Founding Titan’s Origin
Before Eren accessed Ymir’s memories, no one could confirm the origin of the Founding Titan. Many made several theories and conspiracies about its genesis. The Creationists (Eldians) believe that The Gods bestowed Ymir’s powers. In contrast, Marleyans assumed that Ymir’s powers were rooted in the Earth devil.
While both the theories remained unconfirmed, it’s inevitable that Ymir acquired his powers when an unknown spine-like life form pierced her back and spine. This immediately triggers the very first Titan transformation.
Interesting Trivia Facts about the Founding Titan
The Founding Titan Is the Only Titan with Bloodline Necessity
Undeniably, the Founding Titan is the most powerful Titan in the series. They were capable of controlling all Eldians and even manipulating their memories to serve their duty in upholding the vow.
Despite its sheer size and strength, the Founding Titan’s powers can only be wielded by a royal family member (Reiss or Fritz). When the inheritor of the Founding Titan is not of royal blood, they cannot use its powers. Eren even conspired with his brother, Zeke, to activate the true powers of the Founding Titan.
Their Screams Can Trigger Different Events
Most Eldian artworks depicted the Founding Titan with a war horn. This may be a unique representation of the Founding Titan’s scream. Whenever the Titan screams, it can transform any Eldian into its Titan form. It can even control the Pure Titans at will. Their scream must be intentional since it doesn’t cause any confusion to the Titans.
The First King Can Influence the Inheritors From the Reiss/Fritz Family
The Reiss/Fritz family has long inherited the powers of the Founding Titan because of the bloodline restriction. Interestingly, they are influenced and heavily affected by the vow and will of the First Reiss King when inheriting the Founding Titan. It even manifests in how their eye colors changed from the normal light-colored eyes to an iridescent purple glow.
The Founding Titan Can Bend History and Shape the Future
Karl Fritz was the last inheritor of the Founding Titan before the Eldians left for Paradis Island. After the Great Titan War ended, he decided to create a new world for the Eldians on the island as he believed they could live peacefully in these confines.
After constructing a livable space and protecting it with tall walls, Fritz bent history at his will by controlling the memories of all Eldians. He erased all memories of the war and made them forget the narrative as he paved a new world for all Eldians.
Question: Why is the Founding Titan extremely special?
Answer: The Founding Titan is the coordinate and origin from which all the other Titans came. It also possessed specialized powers that no other Titan could emulate. It can control, create, and manipulate the Subjects of Ymir without having to transform in its Titan form. More importantly, it is the only Titan that has royal blood restrictions.
Question: How long does the Founding Titan live?
Answer: Like the rest of the Titan Shifters, the Founding Titan only has 13 years left to live after inheriting the powers. It is coined as the “Curse of Ymir” (ユミルの呪い Yumiru no Noroi?) because it’s impossible to outlive the Founder who only lived for 13 years after she transformed into the Founding Titan.
Question: How many inherited the Founding Titan across the series?
Answer: There are only eight known inheritors of the Founding Titan, namely:
• Ymir Fritz
• Karl Fritz
• Rod and Uri Reiss’ Father
• Uri Reiss
• Frieda Reiss
• Grisha Yeager
• Eren Yeager
All of them are members of the royal bloodline except for Eren Yeager.
Question: How big is Eren’s founding Titan?
Answer: Eren’s Founding Titan was the biggest in Titan ever known. It stands roughly between 220 meters up to 420 meters. To give more context, he is thrice or four times the size of the Wall Titans, which has a potential height range of 55 to 60 meters.
Question: Is Ymir and Ymir Fritz the same?
Answer: Many fans get easily confused with these two characters, but they’re not the same. Ymir was once treated as a deity by a secret society; it turns out that she was a fake. The government then incriminated her for such falsity. She was once the Jaw Titan at some point in the story. On the other hand, Ymir Fritz is the slave girl who became the first Founding Titan.
As the progenitor, the Founding Titan is riddled with a lot of mystery and conspiracy theories. Despite the story revealing its true nature and origin, many still have different ideas in mind. Well, there’s no surprise in that.
The Founding Titan leaves more questions than answers. Despite the manga and anime ending, many people are still wondering whether or not Eren’s decision as the Founding Titan wasn’t influenced by the First King. We’ll never know until Isayama confirms or debunks any of our theories.