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Characters / Fire Emblem: Three Houses – Byleth

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Byleth Eisner

Class: Commoner → Mercenary/Priest → Swordmaster → Enlightened One (Three Houses), Silverheart → Enlightened One (Three Hopes)

Age: ?? (20-21 Pre-Timeskipnote ) (9/20)

Crest: Flames (Major)

Height: 175 cm (male)/164 cm (female)

Male Byleth Voiced by: Yūsuke Kobayashi (Japanese), Zach Aguilar (English)note 
Female Byleth Voiced by: Shizuka Itō (Japanese), Jeannie Tirado (English)
Click here to see both Byleths in Fire Emblem Heroes

The Avatar of Three Houses, Byleth was a member of their father's mercenary group until they came across a group of youths from the Garreg Mach Monastery under attack, at which point they saved them and an unknown power awakens with them. Impressed with this, Byleth is offered to teach at the Garreg Mach Monastery, including the same youths they saved.

Their personal ability, Professor's Guidance, grants them and any adjacent ally twenty percent more Experience. Post-timeskip it is upgraded to Professor's Guidance+, increasing their damage dealt. They bear the Major Crest of Flames, which will occasionally restore health based on the damage they deal and rarely raises Might and stops counterattacks.

They were announced as DLC for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, as the fifth fighter on the first DLC Fighter's Pass, representing Three Houses.

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    # — D 
  • 13 Is Unlucky: Inverted. Byleth is the 13th attempt on Rhea's part to create a vessel for Sothis, and the one that finally succeeded in bringing her back to an extent. Ironically, they weren't even an intentional attempt, but a product of converging coincidences. Which turned out to be a meaningful number, as the name Byleth (One of the alternative spellings for the demon Beleth), is number 13 of the 72 Demons of Ars Goetia.
  • Abdicate the Throne: Several paired endings Byleth can have on the Verdant Wind and Silver Snow routes mention that they end up giving up their position as united leader of Fódlan once the situation in stabilizes.
  • The Ace: They were a mercenary before becoming a teacher at the Officers Academy, yet is skilled enough to teach the continent's most elite. They're also an able tactician, a Magnetic Hero, and remarkably physically attractive. After the timeskip, their allegiance alone decides the fate of the war. In their B-Support Catherine even notes that someone with all their good qualities shouldn't logically exist, and yet here they are.
  • Adaptational Badass: Zigzagged.
    • In Three Houses, their support with Hanneman has him discuss how Byleth was a feared mercenary known as the Ashen Demon, not showing a hint of emotion even in battle, and that their feats were spoken about as if they were some living legend. That being said, their importance in the story comes more from their tactical ability, their abnormal power, and the role they play in changing fate rather than only their pure combat capability. In Three Hopes, we get to see the myths and legends about the Ashen Demon being a One-Man Army are true (even before they've met Sothis), handily wiping out Shez's own mercenary company within minutes, being portrayed as a nigh-unstoppable force of nature.
    • This distinction in portrayal seems to come down to their different roles in each game. In Three Houses the prologue is hinted to be Byleth’s first time leading soldiers into battle, which is one of the first instances that displays that they have a real skill for tactics and leadership, which is nurtured by becoming a professor and taking care of their students while their One-Man Army status is downplayed by comparison. In Three Hopes, none of this happens and they stick to being the enforcer of sorts for Jeralt's company. Furthermore, since Byleth never met their students in Three Hopes, they spent two extra years fighting as the emotionless Ashen Demon, notably without Sothis's power or the Sword of the Creator.
  • Adaptational Curves: Zigzagged. Female Byleth's in-game data and model (especially in her Sothis Regalia) show that she has a massive chest - second only to Manuela and larger than all the other students and teachers. Her appearance in Super Smash Bros. significantly tones down her chest size, which combined with armor makes her look quite modestly endowed by comparison. Her other depictions in Cipher and Heroes on the other hand tend to make her quite consistently well-endowed, though her Summer alt emphasizes her backside more than most depictions.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: In Three Houses, Byleth is a trusted and beloved confidant to the lords and the students due to their relationships enabling them to grow. In Three Hopes, they're just a particularly strong Hired Gun even if you spare and recruit them, likely since they remained a mercenary.
  • Aerith and Bob: Byleth's name derives from a demon, contrasting with most other characters' names that would be reasonable to hear on actual people. They share this trait with their mother Sitri, and this most likely hints to their Ambiguously Human nature.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Several. Jeralt calls them "kid". Their students (sans Claude) all call them "Professor" even after graduation, while Edelgard alternates between that and "my teacher" — right before the Time Skip, Claude, who'd previously called Byleth "Teach," decides to call them "my friend" from then on, even if it's "for lack of a better term".note  Finally, in female Byleth's S-support with Dimitri, he calls her "my beloved".
  • Alliance of Alternates: In the "Holiday Lessons" banner in Heroes, both a male and a female Byleth from different worlds appear together as a duo unit.
  • Always Someone Better: While Shez is by no means an amateur, and like Byleth helps their chosen lord achieve their goals with flying colors, Byleth is regarded as being far, far stronger than Shez, having defeated them with ease during their first bout. Shez even recognizes this in their support with Byleth, stating that while everyone can clearly see them drawing power from Arval, Byleth is much more conservative with Divine Pulse and their power isn't as blatantly obvious. It's also implied that the only reason Byleth even lost to Shez was because Sothis lacked full control over Byleth's body and lowered their fighting performance as a result. This even extends to their analytical ability; Shez’s evaluation of Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude only reads them at face value, while Byleth quickly detects their underlying nature.
  • Ambiguously Human:
    • Between their father having dragon blood (from when Rhea saved him as a youth) and their mother being a homunculus created by Rhea specifically to house Sothis's soul (an experiment that failed) and having Sothis's Crest engraved on their hearts, it is ambiguous how human Byleth really is, not helped by the fact that they have been generally emotionless their entire life before becoming a teacher. Gets even more ambiguous after fusing their soul with the Goddess Sothis'. The Cindered Shadows DLC does somewhat clarify this; their mother, Sitri, was indeed a homunculus, but she was more of a Child of the Goddess than human, meaning that Byleth is technically a Half-Human Hybrid.
    • There's also the question of their lifespan. In most of their paired endings, they live long and natural lives with their loved one. In Flayn's, it's instead suggested they've become as long-lived as the other Children of the Goddess. And in Seteth's S-support, he talks about living long with a female Byleth like it's fact. To muddle the issue further, by virtue of holding Sothis' Crest Stone inside them, they became a first-generation Crest bearer (namely the Crest of Flames), who are explicitly said to live hundreds of years, as demonstrated by Jeralt, Nemesis and the Ten Elites (and Maurice living for a thousand years, albeit in a monstrous state), and Yuri, whose ending with male Byleth's states that historical records seemed to show that both had very long lifespans and seemed to remain young for a very long time. To compound this even further, history is written by fallible historians, and it's entirely possible in some non-Crimson Flower endings for them to fake their death. Notably, despite having a paired ending with Sothis, their endings are exactly the same as the non-paired ones, since Byleth never informs the world of her.
  • And the Adventure Continues: In their Crimson Flower solo ending and most of their Crimson Flower paired endings (with the exception of their paired endings with Alois, Annette, Edelgard, Ingrid, and Petra) they are stated to go to battle against those who slither in the dark after the war's end.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • On the Crimson Flower route, they become this to Rhea. Out of all the possible antagonists, she bears the most hatred towards Byleth because she is driven mad by their refusal to kill Edelgard and interprets this as a betrayal and becomes obsessed with killing them. In the second half, she refers to them as the second coming of Nemesis, which considering her own hatred for him, speaks volumes of her hatred towards them, and even burns down Fhirdiad in an attempt to kill Byleth and the Black Eagles Strike Force.
    • They're this to Shez in Three Hopes. Byleth delivers a Curb-Stomp Battle to Shez and their mercenary company, leaving Shez the Sole Survivor who wants to defeat them. Shez ultimately buries the hatchet either in the ground by recruiting them or in their back by killing them.
  • Audience Surrogate: Byleth has grown up living a mercenary life with Jeralt, having little knowledge of the world outside of battle. Because of this, Byleth does not know many historical or political details about Fódlan, so the other characters will sometimes explain parts of the setting and lore to Byleth (and thus to the players).
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning
    • Byleth is crowned ruler of the United Kingdom of Fódlan at the end of the Silver Snow and Verdant Wind routes.
    • They are named the new Archbishop of the Church of Seiros after Rhea steps down on the Azure Moon route. If Byleth is female and marries Dimitri, she becomes queen of the Holy Kingdom of Faerghus in addition to that.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other:
    • Whenever people ask about Jeralt, Byleth's responses make it seem like they're indifferent to his existence. But when Jeralt dies, Byleth cries for the first time, making it clear that they really do love their father.
    • Earlier, Jeralt can mention to Byleth that he's left something for them in his office in case anything happens to him, and Byleth can insist that he not talk like that. This nets Jeralt's approval.
    • Emphasised in Three Hopes. In their A support with Jeralt Byleth gives them flowers in order to show their father how much they mean to them as they worry that they haven't been able to show it much, and in Jeralt's supports with Manuela they pitch the idea to her of performing the opera Jeralt wanted to take Sitri to before she died.
  • Badass Cape: Both genders wear a black Coat Cape that highlights their strength in battle.
  • Badass Normal: During Three Houses, Byleth awakens all sorts of powers and is strengthened by the player, so even with all the characters saying how strong they are it can be hard to tell how much is Byleth's own skill, beyond them having the "Ashen Demon" title before the game starts. In Three Hopes, where they stay a mercenary instead of joining the monastery, their actual combat prowess is shown. Even without the Sword of the Creator and possibly without using their Crest, Byleth completely dominates Shez in a fight, and even after Shez awakens Arval's power, Byleth still takes no damage for the remainder of the fight despite only fighting with a normal sword and their hand to hand combat skills. In fact, Shez getting help from Arval is treated more like Arval just making Shez strong enough to keep them alive until Jeralt completes his mission and orders his mercenaries (and by extension, Byleth) to withdraw, rather than allowing them to actually beat Byleth. This implies that Byleth would have already been a match in terms of combat abilities for Dimitri, Claude, and Edelgard even before getting stronger at the monastery. Of course, even then "normal" may be a relative term considering Byleth is the child of a homunculus and the strongest Knight of Seiros in history.
  • Badass Teacher: They have no compunctions about taking the front lines along with their students.
  • Babies Ever After: Some of their paired endings:
    • Male Byleth when paired with Lysithea (outside of the Crimson Flower route), Flayn, Manuela or Shamir.
    • Female Byleth when paired with Lorenz and Sylvain outside the Azure Moon route, and Yuri outside of Crimson Flower. She also has this in a roundabout way with Dimitri; while not mentioned in their paired ending slide, Gilbert's solo ending mentions Dimitri had a son, so if both happen in the same playthrough, they presumably had that baby together.
  • Badass Boast: In Three Hopes, they deliver a brutal one to Shez in their first battle.
    Byleth: "Stand down or die."
  • Bare Midriffs Are Feminine: Only the female version has access to a few outfits (including the default) that expose some of her abdomen.
  • BFS: Early in the story, Byleth obtains a greatsword with a unique, winged crossguard called the "Sword of the Creator." Amongst other things, it also functions as a Whip Sword when attacking at range.
  • Big Eater: Their students express surprise at how much Byleth can pack away in post-victory feasts, during the school phase. In a case of Gameplay and Story Integration, Byleth can share a meal with people as many times as the number of your activity points, but you can't select anyone else more than once on the same day. Apparently Byleth has one hell of a bottomless stomach.
  • Big "WHAT?!": Female Byleth's response when Dedue leaves Dimitri's service to propose to her in their S-support is a giant "What?!"
  • Blade Lock: Performs this against Emperor Edelgard and her rapier, before both make an attempt on the other's throats.
  • Body Motifs: The heart. Music associated with them such as The Crest of Flames has a subtle Heartbeat Soundtrack. This is because of their stillborn birth, only living thanks to Rhea implanting the Sword of the Creator's Crest Stone into their heart, intertwining them with Sothis.
  • Boobs-and-Butt Pose: Byleth's damaged art for her summer alt where she wears a bikini has her shown at a angle from behind. This ends up emphasizing her huge butt and also showing off a lot of sideboob due to her massive chest as well.
  • Boss Remix: "Ashen Demon (Inferno)" is Byleth's battle theme as a boss in Three Hopes. It's a remix of Byleth's Leitmotif.
  • Broken Pedestal: Byleth becomes this to the Church of Seiros in Crimson Flower, becoming disgusted with them betraying Rhea for Edelgard. They also become this to Dedue and Dimitri in said route, with Dedue lamenting that Byleth doesn't appreciate Dimitri's perspective and Dimitri admitting he isn't comfortable with the idea of killing them despite being on Edelgard's side.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Female Byleth is this to Dimitri post-timeskip, as Dimitri is left brooding and unstable, while she is more in touch with her emotions by then. There's even a lot of symbolism of her pulling him from the darkness back to the light.
  • Brought Down to Normal: They turn back into a regular human at the end of the Crimson Flower route. This is highlighted by the fact that their hair returns to its regular color again and that, for the first time in Byleth's life, their heart starts to beat normally. That said, exactly how normal is unclear. The Crest Of Flames likely remains, and its last bearer was the flagrantly superhuman, immortal, and seemingly unkillable Nemesis. It's noted in their paired S-support with Sothis that they are still fused with the goddess, which is where the godly power comes from after they performed their Fusion Dance, leaving it unclear exactly why the power vanishes when the Crest Stone no longer serve a purpose years before it disappeared.
  • Brutal Honesty: Dialogue options let you have this, if you so choose. For example, upon being asked by Manuela if they think she'll die without ever finding true love, they can bluntly say "Yes". In a bit of Gameplay and Story Integration, many of your dialogue options in the early game will consist of these to demonstrate Byleth's initial lack of emotions and lack of social experience.
  • But Now I Must Go: In their paired ending with Jeritza, the two vanish without a trace after the battle with those who slither in the dark.
  • Calling Parents by Their Name: One dialogue in the C-support event with Alois has them call Jeralt by name, and it seems to be a habit since Byleth calls Jeralt by his name in Three Hopes as well.
  • Call to Adventure: Played with. Byleth is a mercenary working with their father's group at the start of the game, but ends up having to take up a position as a teacher at a military school for the continent's elite due to the previous teacher running away from bandits in a prologue and being recommended by Alois to Rhea. Byleth's adventure ironically forces them to do less adventuring.
  • Canon Name: Byleth is theirs. No other characters have been heard referring to them by name, however (merely "professor" or other terms), the only exception being the game's launch trailers, in which Jeralt calls Byleth by name. In Japanese, their name is actually done with slightly different but still valid Japanese pronunciations depending on gender; Bereto for the male Byleth and Beresu for the female Byleth. They are also one of the few Fire Emblem protagonists to have a canonical last name - in this case, Eisner. The others are Alm, Celica, Seliph, and Leif.
  • Canon Identifier: Because the player can choose whatever name they like and the game is fully voiced, everyone — even the other teachers when speaking among themselves — just calls Byleth "Professor".
  • Can't Catch Up:
    • During the early game, Byleth will usually fall behind their students in terms of skill levels because the only way to raise their stats (outside combat) is through training with the Garreg Mach staff, and they won't have enough time to do so (especially while doing other activities to raise student stats and support levels). However, they have very good stats to make up for this, and as Byleth's teacher level goes up, raising their skills becomes easier, and fortunately raising supports with students you want to recruit lowers the requirement to do so.
    • This can become subverted in the War Phase of the game, as instead of simply being able to give your students items and invite them to tea, you can now run Advanced Drills with them, which simply amounts to the student giving Byleth a large amount of skill points in skills said student excels at. The benefit of this is that it allows Byleth to gain a large amount of experience for skills they wish to build up for new classes as during the Academy Phase, there were fewer opportunities for each skill due to the limited amount of trainers. Likely they will still lag behind some, but this offers a more solid opportunity to catch up if you have the activity points to spend and students with diverse skills.
  • Cassandra Truth:
    • Some characters, most notably Seteth, ask Byleth questions about who they are, and the only answers you can choose are "I don't know" or "I don't remember". The askers usually don't believe what Byleth says.
    • When Dorothea says "it's like your heart isn't even beating" in her B-support, you have the option of confirming that your heart really isn't beating. Despite dialogue implying that she even checks for herself, Dorothea assumes it's just a well-executed prank.
    • When Edelgard asks where they've been for five years, they can reply with "sleeping". She takes it (along with the "dead" option) as a joke, one she doesn't appreciate.
  • Character Customization: Downplayed compared to previous avatars such as Robin and Corrin, as the only things that are customizable about Byleth are their gender, name, and birthday.
  • Character Development: Downplayed due to their nature as an avatar for the player, but it's noted that Byleth slowly starts to become more social and expressive due to their time as an instructor at the monastery.
  • Chick Magnet: Overlapping with Dude Magnet if Byleth is female, they're capable of attracting many people of both genders.
  • Cincinnatus: Several of their paired Crimson Flower endings have them retire from their position as Adrestia's toughest general to a modest life after the war's end, such as Mercedes' (starting an orphanage together) or Annette's (returning to the Officer's Academy as teachers).
  • Coat Cape: They wear their jacket in this manner. It even has a couple of cut-outs in the armpits to pull off the look.
  • Collared by Fashion: Both have collars that cover their necks - male Byleth has a metal armored collar and female female has a white cloth collar. While not overly emphasized in their normal attire, female Byleth ends up seeing it as a pretty major accessory. While wearing a black bikini in Fire Emblem Heroes, she specifically chooses a bikini top with a black collar on it to cover her neck, despite it lacking enough coverage for her large chest.
  • Combat Medic: Their unique class, Enlightened One, lets them use magic as well as physical weapons, and if they have sufficient Faith, allows them to cast Heal and Recover.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Is mentioned to have shades of this by a few characters, notably Felix in their supports, who says that they don't rely solely on their weapon in the heat of battle, and will use whatever means they have to achieve victory. In Three Hopes, against Shez in the opening battle, they block their sword with their gauntlet, hit them on the head with the blunt end of their sword, and uses their foot to trip them up/break their stance before landing a heavy blow.
  • Combat Stilettos: Female Byleth wears stilettos into battle.
  • The Confidant: Many characters in the game will only confide their insecurities, dark secrets, and inner turmoil to Byleth.
  • Conflicting Loyalties: If you're a Black Eagle, the choice in the Holy Tomb is between siding with the lawful authority who has been signing your paychecks for the past year or the student you have been teaching for the same amount of time.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character:
    • Unlike Kris, Robin, and Corrin, Byleth is a Heroic Mime whose only customizable features are their name, gender, and date of birth. Thanks to their time as a mercenary, they also start out as an Experienced Protagonist when the game starts compared to the former three, who start out as talented but relatively inexperienced individuals.
    • In regards to Robin and Corrin specifically, Byleth also breaks the streak of the Avatar having white hair (though a development in the game causes their hair to change to a faint light green). Byleth's connection to Sothis is also quite benign in comparison to the ones that Robin and Corrin have with Grima and Anankos, both of whom are the Big Bad of their respective games, while Sothis can be said to be the Big Good due to the support that she gives to Byleth.
    • In regards to Robin in particular, the former was created through select breeding in order to become Grima's perfect vessel. In contrast, Byleth became Sothis' vessel more or less by accident. They turned into her vessel due to a complication during Byleth's birth that made their mother, Sitri, beg Rhea to save their life by transferring that crest stone in her heart (which contained Sothis' essence) to Byleth instead. Furthermore, whereas Robin refused Grima's proposals to become his vessel as it would result in the world's end, Byleth accepts Sothis' offer in order to save themselves and everyone else around them. Byleth is also technically the product of selective breeding due to their mother being a homunculus created to try and resurrect Sothis, however.
    • Byleth's background and familial situation is also starkly different from Corrin's. Byleth has a good relationship with their father Jeralt, while Corrin's "father" Garon tries to have them killed. Byleth is an only child, while Corrin has four adoptive siblings (from Nohr) and four more step-siblings (from Hoshido). As a result, Byleth feels no attachment to the other houses, while Corrin angsts about having to face their "other" family in Birthright and Conquest.
  • Cool Sword: All of them.
    • The Sword of the Creator is considered Byleth's weapon of choice, since Byleth is currently the only one who can use it to their full potential, as well as cutscenes showing Byleth wielding the sword. Heroes have both Byleths' regular variants wield this as well, as well as having Legendary Male and Female Byleth's non-special finishing animation attack their foe with the chain whip form of the sword.
    • Their Legendary variants has the male version wield the Professorial Text and the female version wield the Professorial Guide, both of them being tomes and sharing the same effects of -1 maximum special cooldown, and granting them +5 to all their stats during combat if they either initiate combat or is within 2 spaces of an ally, with different effects that trigger under the same condition as well as give all allies within 2 spaces of them the same effect, with Professorial Text allowing the user to ignore skills that guarantee the foe's follow-up attack and deny any of the user's follow-up attacks if the user is faster than their foe, and Professorial Guide allowing the user to ignore skills that grants +1 special cooldown charge to the foe and inflicts -1 special cooldown charge to the user.
    • Since they don't get the Sword of the Creator in Three Hopes, they just settle on a Silver Sword. They eventually upgrade to the Knight-Captain's Sword, a memento of Jeralt's time in the Knights of Seiros.
  • Cool Teacher: Their students definitely regard them as one, and Byleth is shown to love their class so much that their first thought, upon waking up to find five years had passed, is to go find them.
  • The Corrupter: In Warriors: Three Hopes on the Scarlet Blaze route, if you kill Jeralt, Byleth goads Claude into betraying the Empire so that Byleth can get revenge on them and Claude can try to take Fódlan for himself.
  • Creepy Child: Jeralt's diary mentions that even as a baby, Byleth never cried or smiled.
  • Cute Bruiser: Downplayed with female Byleth who is a pretty young woman that is just as deadly as a mercenary as her male counterpart.
  • Cutscene Incompetence:
    • Byleth in cutscenes seemingly forgets that they can rewind time (and in fact can do so several times in a row), even when it'd be useful. The one time where they do (only to find their attempt to meddle to be foiled) to prevent Jeralt's death, they make no other attempts onscreen to rewind time and try a different approach. note 
    • Besides not pulsing, Byleth also tends to stand there and let the villain do things rather than try anything to stop them during cutscenes. Whether this is a result of them not seeing alternative results from Divine Pulse or not is up to interpretation.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Although they wear predominantly black armor, they're a heroic individual. Female Byleth does possess a bit less black and more white in her outfit, however.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Dialogue options are present for Byleth to make funny or dry comments with their completely deadpan face.
  • Death by Adaptation: In Three Hopes. If Shez chooses to confront them instead of letting go of their one-sided rivalry, Byleth and Sothis will be killed in the battle.
  • Death by Childbirth: How their mother died. It's later revealed that Byleth was stillborn, and only lives because Rhea placed the progenitor god's Crest Stone within their heart at their mother's wishes.
  • Declaration of Protection: Makes one of these toward Balthus in their B-Support. If Female Byleth reaches an S-Support with him, he reveals that he was rather flustered when she said that.
  • Demoted to Extra: Twofold in Three Hopes. In their home game, Byleth serves as the protagonist, while in Three Hopes they're an Anti-Villain or Hero Antagonist depending on which lord Shez sides with. If they're recruited, Byleth's rendered Out of Focus at that point as their role in Shez's character arc has come to an end and is now just a member of your party (though they do appear in a number of subsequent scenes and have to be rescued in a later chapter).
  • Deuteragonist: In all routes bar one, Byleth becomes the secondary protagonist in Part II while the main lord becomes the focal point of the story.
  • Defeat Equals Friendship: Or rather ignoring them and focus on defeating the more important enemies leaves them out of a job. If Shez elects to avoid confronting Jeralt's Mercenaries and Byleth and instead turn their attention to the main enemy force, they and Jeralt will concede and join up with Shez and whatever faction they sided with. This is key to moving each route towards its Golden Ending by having Shez give up their rivalry with Byleth; the "normal" endings involving Shez killing Jeralt to force a confrontation end with Byleth's death at their hands with some plot points left unanswered.
  • Defector from Decadence: The Crimson Flower path is them doing this to the Church. Throughout the story, regardless of house, Byleth is allowed to voice misgivings towards the Church's actions and Rhea herself, but only the Crimson Flower path allows them to act on it. The very moment that causes their defection if they so chose, is Rhea ordering them to execute their own student immediately and without any form of investigation as to what motivated her actions and crimes. Notably them doing this causes Rhea to snap.
  • Developers' Desired Date: To the three main lords on each of their respective routes, as they're noted to be the closest to the three house leaders bar none. Most notable with both Edelgard and Dimitri, as it's their close bond with Byleth that manages to prevent the two from sinking any deeper into darkness and becoming potential monsters themselves. They're also this to Rhea in the Silver Snow route. Her life can even be saved at the end if Byleth chooses to A-support her (indicated by Catherine’s default ending changing to match Azure Moon, where Rhea retires to Zanado), and their S-Support is the one scenario where she ultimately still leads Fodlan — albeit no longer alone.
  • Did You Think I Can't Feel?: There are several points where characters express surprise at Byleth showing emotion, which gives you the chance to react with this. Most notably, this trope is in play with each lord during the academy phase.
    • When Edelgard catches Byleth crying over Jeralt's death she expresses surprise that they could cry over anything, though admits that was rude to say. You have a dialog option to agree it was.
    • Dimitri will confess at one point that he thought Byleth was emotionless and didn't care about the class, and both their expression during the confession and the "That stings" dialogue option show them being hurt by that. He apologizes and says he knows differently now.
  • Dismissing a Compliment: Byleth has numerous dialogue options that brush off compliments towards them.
  • Divine Date: Byleth of either gender can romance Sothis, the Goddess of the Church of Seiros.
  • The Dreaded:
    • In all routes, they come with a pre-existing reputation as the "Ashen Demon" among mercenary circles due to their combat prowess and habit of showing absolutely no emotions when battling enemies, and was just as feared as "Blade Breaker" Jeralt was.
    • In some routes, by the time they finally get to confront the Flame Emperor, it's implied they have become this for the latter.
    • Three Hopes showcases just how they live up to their reputation in the game's first level, cutting down Shez and their forces very easily without so much as a hint of emotion. They essentially serve as the Lu Bu of the game.

    E — M 
  • Emotionless Girl: Or guy, depending on gender. Either way, they don't really express themselves very much initially, and several students describe their neutral expression as "stony." This was apparently the par for the course of their life before joining the Academy; they never laughed or cried, something that disturbed Jeralt, and as a mercenary they earned the nickname "Ashen Demon" due to their dark hair and the way they cut down enemies without even a hint of an emotion on their face. Their time as a teacher at Garreg Mach eventually causes them to become more emotional and they cry for the very first time over Jeralt's body as he lies dying. He says that he's sad to see them cry, but is sorta happy that the very first time he's ever seen them cry, it's over him.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Due to their name being customizable in a fully voice-acted game, the majority of the time, Byleth is referred to via their job title "Professor,"* or "Teach" in Claude's case. Shez and other mercenaries more often call them by their moniker, the Ashen Demon.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Byleth's own moral code and ultimate allegiance depend on the player's choices, but there are a few lines they can never cross:
    • They have a deep, personal loathing for those who slither in the dark, and unlike Hubert and Edelgard, never seek their assistance even on Crimson Flower. The only possible instance of Teeth-Clenched Teamwork between them is in Hubert's paralogue, wherein Byleth is tasked with saving their mages from a predicament they've put themselves in, and even then, there's nothing stopping you from letting them sustain heavy lossesnote .
    • They will always oppose Edelgard's raid on the Holy Tomb, even if you attended her coronation on the Black Eagles route. Only after she's been thwarted can they decide to side with her.
    • They show clear contempt for Acheron's opportunism and Chronic Backstabbing Disorder, to the point that the two can never fight on the same side under any circumstances. In the route in which Byleth fights for the Empire, Acheron reluctantly sides with the Alliance.
    • In Bernadetta and Jeritza's supports, they're sympathetic to the horrors the two have suffered at the hands of their abusive fathers, and regard said fathers as utterly despicable for what they've done. While Ingrid's father is not nearly as bad as Count Varley or Baron Bartels, both of Byleth's choices in response to him marrying her off disapprove of the idea.
    • They're incredibly protective of the students in their chosen house, and will never betray or turn against them under any circumstances, and they most definitely do not appreciate anyone who threatens or antagonizes one of them; in one instance where a scholar begins throwing threats and accusations at Marianne, the only dialogue choice the player is given is to yell at the man to get out. The only exceptions are Edelgard and Hubert in the Silver Snow route but only because they're the ones who betray you. And even then, Byleth can still refuse to kill Edelgard and side with her.
    • They are hinted to have a dislike of unnecessary bloodshed and suffering even when they have to kill, most notably expressed by cutting down Randolph in a clean and quick manner as opposed to a slow and torturous one intended by Dimitri.
  • Excellent Judge of Character: At the beginning of Three Houses, they quickly suss out some of the lords' Hidden Depths (Edelgard's ambition, Dimitri's Mask of Sanity, Claude's insincere casualness). Contrast Shez in Three Hopes, who fails to see past their first impressions.
  • Extreme Omnivore: They'll eat anything edible. It's to the point that in Three Hopes as a playable character, they have no disliked dishes whatsoever.
  • Everybody Knew Already: More simply Byleth. If it's the option, Seteth will come clean about his parentage and that Flayn is really his daughter, and he expresses surprise when they tell him they already figured it out after making great pains to keep it a secret.
  • Experience Booster: Byleth's personal skill, Teacher's Guidance, not only grants them an extra 20 percent boost to experience gained, but also to any adjacent allies.
  • Fatal Flaw: Their Leeroy Jenkins tendencies nearly bite them in the ass a few times. All of those times, Sothis reprimands them for doing what they did when they could have used other alternatives in dealing with certain situations.
  • Fiery Stoic: They are, for a large chunk of the game, a highly unemotional person, and most of their Reason spell list is Fire-based.
  • Foreshadowing: Occasionally, bits of memory seem to slip from Sothis' mind and into Byleth's. One early example of this has Byleth wondering "since when was it called the Red Canyon?" as they look upon Zanado. This foreshadows that the event that gave it that name happened after Sothis was slain.
  • Forgot About His Powers: Story-wise, Byleth tends to shirk using their time-rewinding powers in order to prevent terrible things from happening (though it's possible some events are just fated to happen regardless). Sothis lampshades the event where Byleth gets banished by Solon, which has them being bound by dark tendrils and just glaring, with no explicit indication that the dark magic was hindering Divine Pulse. Specifically, she asks why they just stood there after-the-fact.
  • Founder of the Kingdom: The Verdant Wind and Silver Snow routes end with Byleth becoming the first ruler of the United Kingdom of Fódlan.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Phlegmatic. As the Heroic Mime, Byleth has little in the way of proper characterization. Their dialogue options paint them as an Emotionless Girl (or Boy), and a Nice Guy (or Girl), and they generally lean more towards humility than arrogance.
  • Friendless Background: Due to their childhood being spent on the road with their father and his mercenaries, they never really had any friends before coming to the Officers Academy. In fact, in Heroes, Female Byleth's A-rank conversation with Sharena shows that she doesn't actually know the distinction between a friend and an ally, much to Sharena's surprise. Although by the S-rank conversation, Byleth has a better grasp of friendship, and officially befriends Sharena. Despite their isolation and personality, they are shown to genuinely love their father and see him as their best friend, as they cry for the first time in their life only when they fear losing him. And in Three Hopes, if Shez gives them a Mercenary Whistle, then at the end of the game Byleth will thank them for giving them a chance to finally make true friends.
  • Fusion Dance: Fuses with Sothis in order to escape from Solon's trap, changing their hair color from teal to light green and granting Byleth her powers as a goddess. Doubles with Emergency Transformation.
  • The Gadfly: Some of their dialogue options paint a very impish nature underneath their stoic exterior. When Byleth first meets Sothis, she asks what you are; two of your responses are "demon" and "ghost". Picking one has her admonish Byleth to be serious, upon which they can pick the other.
  • Gender-Inclusive Writing: In-game, dialogue is carefully written so Byleth is not referred with pronouns, with few exceptions. Characters use different monikers and titles to refer to Byleth (hence avoiding having to voice the name the player chose), and use those names in place of pronouns. However, the Death Knight will address Byleth as either "That Man" or "That Woman" depending on their gender.
  • Gendered Outfit: Male Byleth wears black and dark grey armor which covers almost his entire body, except his head. Female Byleth's armor is altered in various ways to give her a more feminine appearance. Overall, she shows more skin and has lighter colors than her male counterpart.
  • Get Out!: In Marianne's paralogue, a Crest Scholar accuses of Marianne of being the Wandering Beast in the Edmund territory and demands to hand her over. Byleth does not hesitate nor flinch to yell at him to get out; in fact, this is the only dialogue option you are presented with, making it clear that Byleth does not appreciate someone threatening their students.
  • Glowing Eyes: In Three Hopes, their eyes glow after Sothis first possesses them.
  • Good Stepmother: Seteth is female Byleth's potential marriage candidate, meaning Flayn becomes her stepchild. Very notable since this is the first instance of a Fire Emblem protagonist avatar marrying someone who already has a child.note 
  • Guest Fighter: They're the sixth downloadable character of twelve in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and the last of Fighter's Pass 1.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: Byleth's mother is Sitri, a homunculus "born" of Sothis's crest stone, and while their father Jeralt obtained a Major Crest of Seiros directly from Rhea via blood transfusion, he's an otherwise ordinary human, with all the vulnerabilities that come with it. His only two notable traits from the blood are a bit more strength than the average human and drastically slowed aging. And that's not even factoring Sothis' presence within them either. This also makes Byleth the third lord/avatar unit in the series to not be entirely human, being preceded by Corrin (half-human, half-dragon) and Micaiah (a Heron-descended Branded).
  • Hallucinations: At the start of the game, a discussion with Jeralt reveals that Byleth has been dreaming of a war and a girl sitting on a throne for some time now. It isn't until their encounter with Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude that they learn more about Sothis and actually learn her name.
  • Happily Married: Post-war, they can marry one of their students or allies, and their union is invariably described as loving and peaceful.
  • Hazy-Feel Turn: In the Crimson Flower route, Byleth betrays the Church and defects to Edelgard's cause. If Edelgard's portrayal in the Crimson Flower route were anything like her portrayal in the other three routes, especially the Azure Moon route, this would unquestionably be a Face–Heel Turn. However, due to the Crimson Flower route's use of Grey-and-Gray Morality, it's ultimately up to the player's interpretation to determine whether this is a Face–Heel Turn or a Heel–Face Turn.
  • The Heart: They become the emotional support and center of whichever class they choose. The Azure Moon route makes it most explicit, with Annette saying their class wouldn't be the same without them and Dimitri outright calling them 'the heart of the Blue Lions'.
  • Heartbroken Badass:
    • They don't take Jeralt's death well at all, it being the first time they ever manage to cry in their life.
    • They're immediately upset over their mistake forcing Sothis to give up her individuality to save them, and will sadly think about how they can't hear her anymore in the next exploration sequence. If you S-support her, they will declare how lonely life was without her and start to cry when she returns.
    • While they don't shed tears over it, Byleth is noticeably saddened about having to kill Edelgard on the Verdant Wind/Silver Snow routes after hardening their heart to fulfill her request.
    • They're visibly distraught when they see how Dimitri's fared in the timeskip, and they have several dialogue options about how they miss the Dimitri they knew.
  • Hero Antagonist: While Byleth is pitted against Shez in Three Hopes, they're not in any way malicious or malevolent because of it. When Byleth massacres Shez's mercenary group at the start of the game, it is abundantly clear that it's Nothing Personal, and Shez's own vendetta against them is shown outright to be completely one-sided. Even when Byleth is recruited by an opposing faction later in the game, due to Three Hopes inheriting Three Houses's Gray-and-Gray Morality, there is no indication that they're necessarily in the wrong for doing so. This is hammered home in the endgame, where pursuing Byleth to the bitter end locks you out of every route's Golden Ending, while letting go of the vendetta is crucial to seeking out a better outcome. Moreover, in his first support with Shez, while still apologetic Jeralt explicitly points out that Berling and her mercenaries were the ones who attacked Byleth, and despite how easy Byleth made their victory look, Berling was too strong to go easy on.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: They wield swords in nearly all promotional materials shown, and their personal weapon is a sword, alongside starting with a sword and wielding swords in cutscenes. Additionally, they start with a higher rank in Swords than other weapons.
  • Heroic Mime:
    • Played straight when interacting with other characters in the overworld: The player is given options on how Byleth will reply to certain questions, but their dialogue is not voiced, though they may change expression and gesture.
    • Averted in battle, where Byleth has voiced quotes like any other character, although Sharena notes that they're not the chatty type in Female Byleth's bio. Fittingly, in Heroes and Three Hopes, most of their dialogue is rather short and straight to the point.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: In Heroes, they mention that they don't think they're a very good professor, and give their students all the credit for their success. Several other dialogue options during Supports give them the opportunity to dismiss compliments about their teaching or battle skills.
  • Hidden Buxom: Female Byleth's cleavage window is covered by her large necklace, but internal modifiers indicate she is the second-bustiest female playable character in the entire game, ahead of even Dorothea and Hilda and just behind Manuela. Her Heroes bikini makes it apparent her breasts are enormous - the largest of any female protagonist in the series (especially since both Robin and Corrin appeared in bikinis previously). Though, this same art also reveals she is still slightly less well-endowed than Rhea herself.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • Despite Byleth's seeming lack of social expertise, they are able to correctly analyze Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude's characters not long after meeting them. This contrasts Shez's first impressions of them in Three Hopes, as while they have better social skills, they can only analyze the lords on a surface level.
    • Despite having only met them once two years ago, Byleth recognizes Shez when they meet again on the battlefield during the War Phase.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: In Three Hopes, the moment they show up on the battlefield is when things go horribly wrong for Shez and their crew. They only take Scratch Damage from Shez's attacks and easily wipe out their health bar in only a few attacks. Even when Shez is empowered by Arval, they still can't put a dent in the Ashen Demon.
  • Hope Bringer: Their return after the time skip broke the stalemate of the war and allow the faction they sided with to win the war. In the Silver Snow route, their presence is able to bring back the Church's army back from the brink.
  • Hot for Preacher:
    • It is possible for both versions of Byleth to romance archbishop Rhea and a female Byleth can romance Seteth.
    • Downplayed if Byleth romances Mercedes as the latter is not an official member of the Church of Seiros during the events of the story but becomes a cleric in some of her endings.
  • Hot Teacher: In the eyes of their students, anyway: Byleth is their professor, and is talked up in various supports (such as Dorothea's or Sylvain's) as being quite attractive.
  • Informed Attribute:
    • Byleth's tactical awareness and fighting capabilities are talked up a great deal by those around them. The latter is easy enough to infer, given their title of "Ashen Demon" and former mercenary experience, but the former is somewhat less so. It is true to some degree, via their ability to use Divine Pulse note , but there are also several instances where Byleth's Leeroy Jenkins tendencies could have led to their death if not for literal divine intervention bailing them out.
    • One of Edelgard's stated reasons for taking a shine to Byleth is that they're ideal for offering to argue against her, and to help her think. Not only is Byleth the most passive in vocalizing their opinions on said route, but there are six dialogue trees where it's possible to lose support points with Edelgard by making Byleth disagree with her. By comparison, Claude has two branches (one in which you agree with Edelgard to probe him on his past, while another is urging him to interrogate a shaken Flayn), and Dimitri has only one (where you parrot the Flame Emperor's disavowal of the Remire massacre to him).
  • Improbable Age: Despite being in their early twenties, not much older than the majority of the students they teach, Byleth gets hired as a head instructor at the academy. This odd appointment gets acknowledged in-universe by teachers and students alike.
  • Incompatible Orientation: If Byleth is a woman she experiences this with Manuela as the latter laments the fact that Byleth is not a man during one of their support conversations.
  • In-Series Nickname:
    • Their students call them "professor," probably to get around the fact that their name is customizable, and of course, because Byleth is their professor. Claude, however, calls them "teach" while Balthus calls them "pal" and Hapi calls them "Chatterbox''.
    • "Kid" by Jeralt, once again to get around the fact that their name is customizable, as he's one of the few characters who wouldn't call them "professor."
    • They're known as the "Ashen Demon" by those who fear Jeralt's mercenaries, due to their grey coat, lack of any sort of emotions, and extreme prowess in cutting down enemies.
    • In Heroes the "Summer Memories" duo unit for Female Byleth and Rhea has the latter call Byleth by name.
      Rhea: (when summoned) I am Rhea, Archbishop of the Church of Seiros. Byleth and I hope to take our ease on the beach together.
  • Irony: Their nickname is "Ashen Demon" but they can end up becoming the next archbishop of the Church of Seiros at the end of the Azure Moon route.
  • I See Dead People: Heavily implied to be what's going on with Byleth speaking with Dimitri in Silver Snow after they are reported to have been slain in battle. Notably when Seteth arrives he will remark on how he neither saw nor heard anyone but Byleth.
  • Jack of All Trades:
    • They have three proficiencies at the start of the game, can develop an additional proficiency in faith through training, and has no particular weaknesses when handling weapons.
    • Byleth's growth rates are fairly above average across the the board with the exception of Magic, Defense and Resistance note . While Byleth tends to favor sword-based classes more, they can still technically fill any class the player opts them to.
  • Lady of War: Female Byleth is a calm, reasonable and highly skilled woman from a mercenary background, and early on she becomes a teacher at a military school.
  • The Lancer: They serve as this to all three leaders during the second half of the game, but specifically to Edelgard. The Crimson Flower route is the only route that doesn't have Byleth assume a role of major leadership in the ending (in Azure Moon, Byleth becomes the Archbishop of the church and in Verdant Wind and Silver Snow, they outright become the ruler of the united Fódlan). They simply remain Edelgard's right hand man/woman as she becomes Emperor of Fódlan.
  • Last-Minute Hookup: Unlike their predecessors, Byleth can't actually S-Support until after the final boss on any given route. Byleth chooses the person just before the Final Battle (a two-part mission on Crimson Flower and Azure Moon), then marries the person if they're still alive.
  • The Leader: Played straight and zigzagged. Prior to working as a teacher, Byleth was a member of a mercenary group, but the leader was their father Jeralt. As a professor, Byleth is the leader of one of the three school houses and is also tasked with overseeing the education, battles and training of all the students in the school, often acting as The Strategist, though they primarily take tactical command rather than making overall strategic decisions.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: In Heroes, both male and female Legendary Byleth mention they might never end up finding all the answers they seek, lampshading how all paths of Three Houses' leave Byleth in the dark one way or another, regarding some aspects of the story.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Due to having virtually no experience with their emotions prior to the events of Three Houses, Byleth has their moments once they start developing:
  • Leitmotif: "Ashen Demon (Embers)" is Byleth's theme in Three Hopes. It's Dark Reprise of "The Edge of Dawn", the main theme of Three Houses, fitting for The Hero of Three Houses who is now a Rogue Protagonist.
  • Light 'em Up: Can learn Aura by raising their Faith rank.
  • Light Girl, Dark Boy: Female Byleth's outfit incorporates whites and lighter greys compared to male Byleth, who wears all blacks and dark greys.
  • Like Father, Like Son:
    • Though Byleth's stoicism is implied to be the result of Sothis' Crest Stone giving them life, Alois remarks that Jeralt doesn't exactly wear his emotions on his sleeve either; Byleth could well have learned that behavior from him. Alois also mentions that Jeralt was a master fisher, and fishing is a minigame that Byleth can take to easily.
    • Aelfric reveals during Cindered Shadows that Byleth's mother had difficulty showing emotion as well possibly for the exact same reason, only really smiling around Jeralt.
    • Male Byleth can potentially be like his father if he romances the pious Mercedes, Marianne, or Rhea; his mother Sitri was a nun at Garreg Mach.
    • Female Byleth can take after her mother if she romances Dimitri, as both he and Jeralt are warriors from Faerghus who appreciate the smile of the love of their life.
  • Likes Older Men: Female Byleth is twenty years old at the start of the story and can potentially marry Hanneman who is 56 years old. Exaggerated if she marries Seteth who is several centuries older than her.
  • Likes Older Women: Male Byleth is twenty years old at the start of the story and can potentially marry Manuela who is 36 years old. Exaggerated if either version of Byleth marries Rhea who is at least a millennia older than them.
  • Living Emotional Crutch:
    • To the three main Lords, but more specifically Edelgard and Dimitri. Without the presence of Byleth in their lives, they progressively become more antagonistic in routes where they're the enemies.
    • To Bernadetta. Her A- and S-support conversations will have her basically declare Byleth such, that she only can face the outside world and new places with them around.
    • To Marianne. She admits that before they came along, she was in a state of deep depression and prayed to the goddess to end her life, but that Byleth's support has lifted her from such a state.
    • To Rhea, whose madness over seeking her mother and the past of the Red Canyon causes her to make the same mistake.
    • Jeralt is this to Byleth. Before they gain ability to express emotions, Jeralt was the single and only person Byleth held any affection for, and even after having bonded with everyone at Garreg Mach Jeralt is still an important figure in their life. When Jeralt dies in both games (the latter case depending on the player’s choice), Byleth completely loses controls and go on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge without caring for their own life.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: They are largely unaware of who they really are, although they do find out as the story progresses. Also, no matter what route Byleth takes, they will always be ignorant of certain story elements.
  • Lone Wolf Boss: In Warriors: Three Hopes, if you kill Jeralt on the Azure Gleam or Golden Wildfire routes, they jump you after the meat of the second-to-last battle is through. They have no interest in the greater conflict and only care about killing you in revenge. It's not quite so on Scarlet Blaze since they are the ones who goad Claude into double-crossing the Empire and are mechanically aligned with the Alliance.
  • Luminescent Blush: Female Byleth blushes when S-Supported with a handful of characters, notable since her emotions are stunted, and she rarely expresses herself in other situations.
  • Magically Inept Fighter: Downplayed. They're decent with magic and have a reliable spell list, but their Magic growth is considerably lower than their Strength growth, which generally means a magically built Byleth still won't match up to the game's more dedicated spellcasters. They also start with a flat E rank in both Reason and Faith, meaning it takes a good amount of time for them to reach the point where they can start casting spells, which usually involves dedicating a lot of time to Facility Training to get that far.
  • Magic Knight: Their plot-related class, Enlightened One, allows the use of magic in battle alongside their sword. Their unique classes in Three Hopes (Silverheart and Enlightened One) allow them to imbue their sword with fire, electricity or light, and this ability is enhanced by the skill Mage Knight's Ploy.
  • Magnetic Hero: A staple to all Lords in the series but at the same time downplayed. While they can recruit most of the students of other houses to theirs, there are also a few who can't be depending on the routes. Regardless, Byleth plays such an important role in their students' lives that when recruited, they would even side against their homeland and loved ones. Notably in the Silver Snow route, their remaining students would rather side with them over Edelgard and Hubert, whom some of them had known longer and five years later, return to Garreg Mach to keep the promise they made despite not knowing about their survival at the time.
  • Master of All: Much like Robin before them, their overall great growths and potential to specialize in any class and weapon give them the potential to succeed in pretty much any combat role, albeit somewhat skewed towards physical side.
  • Master of None: Despite their great potential overall, if the player wants to recruit all students, then Byleth's skill growth will end up haphazard and unfocused throughout most of Part I due to having to develop serviceable skills in pretty much every martial discipline in the game. Mercifully, unlocking the Enlightened One class at the end of Chapter 10 instantly turns them into The Red Mage with no investment required, and they can spend Part II catching up to become a proper Master of All.
  • Master Swordsman: Or Swordswoman. Byleth primarily wields a sword and has enough skill to teach students at a Military Academy where the future leaders of the continent attend. Besides theoretical knowledge, Byleth survived as a mercenary before becoming a teacher and is strong enough to lead the students in actual battles, despite not being the leader of their father's mercenaries. Felix, a childhood friend of Dimitri, can actually be recruited to another house based solely on his desire to see Byleth's swordplay up close.
  • Meaningful Name: "Byleth" is one of the spellings used for Beleth, a demon king from demonology. Fitting for a mercenary clad in black who is called the "Ashen Demon" thanks to their stoic approach to battle and who can also become the king/queen of a united Fodlan at the end of the Silver Snow and Verdant Wind (and Azure Moon, if a female Byleth marries Dimitri) routes.
  • Menacing Stroll: Their introductory cutscene in the prologue level of Three Hopes upon Shez reaching their location has the camera show the Ashen Demon calmly walking in with sword on hand to show the difference of skill and how much of an ominous threat they pose. Their menacing stroll is featured again in a cutscene that includes a terrified Shez's perspective after the first bout, in which Byleth disarms Shez and prepares to kill them prior to Arval's intervention.
  • Mentor Archetype: They're this to the students of the Officers Academy, heading one of the Black Eagles, Blue Lions, and Golden Deer. They even jokingly lampshade this in some of their battle quotes, declaring, "Let the lesson begin!" or "Allow me to demonstrate!" despite being in an actual life-or-death battle. All their students continue referring to Byleth as their teacher even after the timeskip, highlighting how much respect they have for Byleth.
  • Mercy Kill: At the end of chapter 14 on the Azure Moon route, Byleth steps in and quickly cuts down the defeated Randolph, after Dimitri had been mentally tormenting him and threatening Cold-Blooded Torture. When Dimitri questions them, they can respond that they couldn't bear to watch the scene.
  • Messianic Archetype:
    • They fit several hallmarks of being a messiah. They are the reincarnation of the local goddess born through a miracle, they are betrayed by a close disciple who goes on to assume a devil-like role, and they rise from death to save the continent in its hour of need. Invoking this is Rhea's goal, who hoped to have Byleth become the Progenitor God in order to bring back the Goddess that the Church preaches can save Fódlan.
    • Ironically, in the Crimson Flower route, despite turning against the church, they still fit this. In that route, they turn against the church due to their loyalty to Edelgard and her goals, which symbolically makes Rhea a false Messiah who proclaims herself the envoy of the Goddess that is defeated by the true Messiah who really has the Goddess with them since it is Sothis who wakes up Byleth.
  • Missing Mom: Their mother died before the events of the game, via giving birth to them.
  • Morality Chain: They serve as this to the lords, and especially to Rhea in Silver Snow. With Edelgard and Dimitri, their positive influence and friendship curbs the worst of their questionable acts (such as Edelgard being less reliant on TWSITD and Dimitri eventually pulling away from his Ax-Crazy mindset). With Rhea, her route shows her moving on from her mother's death and attempting to help make amends, assuming one reaches A-Rank Support with her.
  • More than Just a Teacher: Despite Byleth's incredible power, they keep their head down and work as a professor at Garreg Mach.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Female Byleth is quite the looker, having enormous breasts, a huge butt, and overall a very curvy figure (best seen in her summer outfit in Heroes), and even her wardrobe can be easy on the eyes (despite the bizarre stockings). Her alternate outfits in various official art and in-game also tend to have her show off her large cleavage, particularly her Sothis Regalia (which is designed for the much more slender Sothis) and her bikini, which barely covers her chest and butt and leaves her looking very scantily clad, save for her collar.
  • Mysterious Past: The specifics of their life with Jeralt before coming to the monastery are quite vague, even to themselves. In his C-Support, Seteth asks rather simple questions like "Are you Jeralt Eisner's child?", "How long have you been a mercenary?", and even "How old are you, exactly?" and the most Byleth can give are vague, unsure answers.

    N — Z 
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Meaningful Name aside, who in their right mind would pick a fight with someone who's called the Ashen Demon?
  • Navel Window: Female Byleth has this, distinguishing her armor from her male counterpart.
  • Never Found the Body: Byleth is presumed to have gone missing at the end of Part I, having been beneath a collapsing building (Crimson Flower) or fallen into a deep ravine (all other routes), putting them into a coma for five years to heal their wounds.
  • Not a Game: One possible response you can give to Dimitri when he expresses enthusiasm over seeing you and Jeralt fight side by side is "This isn't a game." Dimitri will apologize regardless of which remark is chosen.
  • Not Afraid to Die: One of the lines you can choose at the start of the game, after Sothis stops time to save your life, implies that Byleth doesn't fear death.
  • No-Sell:
    • Byleth's main gimmick in Heroes has them able to ignore skills that both guarantee the foe's follow-up attacks and deny any of their follow-up attacks. For their regular variants it's one of the effects of their Creator Sword; for Summer Female Byleth it's in her Sun's Percussors if either she is faster than her foe at the start of combat or if the foe is at full HP at the start of combat; for Halloween Duo Sothis and Byleth its in their Duo Skill, and even then it only activates if the user is faster than their foe during combat; for Legendary Male Byleth it's in his Professorial Text, and also activates if he is faster than his foe; finally, for Legendary Female Byleth it's in her Secret Art Goddess Bearer if she starts her turn within 2 spaces of an ally. In Heroes their regular variant's Creator Sword and Legendary Female Byleth's Professorial Guide, they also have an effect that allows them to ignore skills that bth gives the foe +1 special cooldown charges and inflicts -1 special cooldown charges on them during combat.
    • In Three Hopes' opening Hopeless Boss Fight, trying to hit Byleth with a Warrior Special just results in them blocking the entire thing, with the end result being "0 Total Damage"
  • Nothing Personal: They give quite the cold shoulder to Shez after having killed off their entire mercenary corps and defeated them in the opening level, after Jeralt calls off the attack. Of course, from Byleth's perspective it really is nothing personal: Berling's Mercenaries picked the fight first and they simply neutralized the threat, and that's just how it is in the mercenary life. Byleth only decides It's Personal if Shez chooses to make it so first by killing Jeralt to force a confrontation, as otherwise Byleth has no problem working with Shez.
    Byleth: Sorry, but this fight is over.
    Shez: Hey, wait!
    Byleth: Why? We've achieved our goal. Your job was to stop us, and you failed.
    Shez: Grr...
    Byleth: Another time, perhaps.
  • Not So Above It All: As a sign of their emotional awakening, especially in Part II, they start to get the option to say funny, sarcastic, or snarky lines in various supports, paralogues and even story events. Examples include teasing Edelgard for being cute on Crimson Flower, or suggesting funny disguises for Claude or Hilda on Verdant Wind. Even in Part I they can show a rather deadpan sense of humor at times, or a funny interpretation of a situation.
  • Not So Stoic:
    • Byleth spends most of Part I showing little emotion, but they do not take the death of their father well. They cry for the first time in their life, slumping during the following month and the other characters notice how down Byleth is at the loss.
    • In Three Hopes's paralogue involving Sauin, when Leonie mentions "Glad I can count on [Shez to help out], at least", Byleth's reaction is that of silent annoyance.
  • Number Two: On the Azure Moon, Verdant Wind, and Crimson Flower routes, Byleth effectively becomes this to that route's leader. Each of the three has a bit of a variant of this:
    • On the Azure Moon route, Byleth is the tactician of the Kingdom Army. In a sense, Byleth also has to step up with leading the group due to Dimitri wrestling with his own demons for much of the route.
    • On Verdant Wind, Claude is the de facto leader and tactician of the United Forces, with Byleth serving as the general and a figurehead to rally around.
    • On the Crimson Flower route, Byleth shares the role with Hubert, with him serving as Edelgard's tactician while Byleth is the field leader.
  • Obliviously Beautiful: Neither gender seem to understand how physically attractive they are.
  • Oblivious to Love: Implied Trope.
    • Several S-Support conversations have a character confirm that they had a crush on or fell in love with Byleth either from the moment they met or at some unknown point earlier within the story. In particular, Hapi tells male Byleth that she had a crush on him from the start and Sothis questions whether or not her own feelings somehow influenced Byleth's. This would imply that a Byleth that doesn't S-Support the character in question is either oblivious to or does not requite their feelings.
    • The Goddess Tower Event with Dorothea has her all but say directly that she wants Byleth to be her fated partner but all of Byleth's dialogue options implies that this goes over their head.
    • Funnily averted in the case of Lorenz. Female Byleth's response to his proposal is "It's about time".
    • They may not know the term for it, but they clearly do love Jeralt very much as shown when they cry for the first time in their life as he lays dying.
  • Oh, Crap!: In "Outset of a Power Struggle," they respond with a visibly horrified "?!" when the Death Knight arrives. Fortunately for you, he's on your side this time.
  • One-Handed Zweihänder: Byleth's sword, the Sword of the Creator, is a large and extremely long Whip Sword that would require two hands to wield based on size alone, yet both male and female Byleth are capable of swinging it over their shoulder and resting it there with just a single arm. Their artwork also depicts them wielding it one-handed. The Silver Sword they use in Three Hopes is just as long.
  • One Head Taller: Male Byleth to a few of his female love interests. The Female Byleth is 164cm, making her this to many of her male love interests, and even the male Byleth (who is 175cm tall).
  • One-Man Army: Their leadership, martial skill, and powers from Sothis allow them to decide the fate of the war.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business:
    • In her S-support with Dedue, female Byleth drops her usual stoic nature and blurts out a Big "WHAT?!" (without the player even getting a dialogue option to select) when Dedue admits he is leaving Dimitri's service to be with her.
    • Related to the above, certain S-support conversations are pretty much the only time Byleth will say something (still via text rather than voice acted admittedly) without needing the player to prompt/decide their words for them.
    • Overall, you can tell when something is really going sideways when they become emotional over something. This diminishes some as their emotions awaken of course.
  • Otherworldly Technicolour Hair: Byleth's hair turns light green after merging with Sothis.
  • Out of Focus: If they're recruited in Three Hopes, Byleth's role in the story diminishes, and with it, Shez's rivalry. They can still interact at base camp and have support conversations, but make few story appearances aside from the chapter where Arval takes over Shez.
  • Overrated and Underleveled:
    • They have a reputation as a seasoned mercenary with far more experience than the students at the start of the story, but they start off as a level 1 Commoner with above-average base stats.
    • To an extent, they are also this if recruited in Three Hopes - their stats are perfectly fine, it's their class progress that is lacking, as they join in an intermediate Silverheart class at the time when everyone else uses Master classes.
  • The Paragon Always Rebels: If they desert the Church to join forces with Edelgard, they can potentially take up to just under three quarters of the student bodynote  and about half of Rhea's best knights with them. Downplayed in that those are just the named, unique students. There are presumably dozens more unnamed students who are just not story important, but Byleth can still rally most of the story important ones.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Due to their stoic nature, Byleth almost always has a disinterested look on their face as their neutral expression, to the point that it's notable when they visibly emote. Said emoting becomes more common over the course of the game as they get in touch with/awaken their emotions.
  • Phlebotinum Rebel: On the Crimson Flower route. They are the end result of Rhea working for over a millennium to create a worthy vessel for Sothis, and they take that power and use it to burn everything she built up to the ground.
  • Physical God: Once Sothis fuses with Byleth, they're granted her powers themselves. This also comes with the added bonus of them being able to utilize the Sword of the Creator's full power as well, which they immediately use to cut their way through a dimension of darkness. In Three Hopes, during one of their supports with Shez, the conversation ends with Shez talking about the Goddess' role in things. As they leave, Byleth says under their breath that the Goddess may have been the one talking to Shez. This also counts as a bit of an Ascended Meme for Female Byleth, as fans have often called Byleth herself "goddess" in reference to her being Sothis' host as well as her fanservicey elements since the release of Three Houses.
  • Pink Means Feminine: A Byleth of both genders will have pink as the secondary color to all of their class outfits, with the exception of the Enlightened One class, but the touches are more prominent on a female Byleth. Her default armor's brooch has a large pink tassel, and the school uniform she can wear has pink-lined socks and a pink headband. Her "Overseas Memories" dual alt in Heroes adorns her black bikini with pink accessories; The black pegasus she rides on also wears a pink tassel.
  • Playing with Fire: Byleth is capable of learning Fire, Bolganone, and Ragnarok as they focus on Reason.
  • Power Dyes Your Hair: Byleth's hair and eyes turn from teal and blue to shades of green mirroring Rhea's hair and eyes after Sothis gifts them her power on a greater scale and they basically become one with her as a result. Their colors only return to normal at the end of the Crimson Flower route or if Shez kills them in Three Hopes, signaling that Sothis has died as well.
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner:
    "Stay focused." (Pre-timeskip)
    "What's my strategy?" (Post-timeskip)
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner:
    "It's over!"
    "No hesitation!"
    "Allow me to demonstrate!"
    "Let the lesson begin!" (Pre-timeskip)
    "Prepare yourself!" (Post-timeskip)
    "Let this be a lesson!" (Post-timeskip)
    "Here is your answer!" (Post-timeskip)
    "Here is something to believe in!" (Post-timeskip)
  • Propaganda Hero: This comes up in the Verdant Wind route with Claude playing up Byleth's Chosen One status to rally the Knights of Seiros and the Alliance Lords to their cause. Claude does acknowledge how manipulative this is, with Byleth possibly not even being devout, but deems it a necessary evil.
  • Protagonist Powerup Privileges: Only Byleth can access the Enlightened One class.
  • Psychotic Smirk: In Three Hopes they do a disturbingly satisfied smirk after killing Judith in the Golden Wildfire route if Jeralt is killed, the implication being that they wanted to make sure Shez was there to see it when they cut her down.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: In Three Hopes, they don't have any grudge against Shez or their benefactors. They're just a mercenary out for coin. That goes flying right out the window if you kill Jeralt, though.
  • Quit Your Whining:
    • In Bernadetta and Petra's Paralogue, Bernadetta attempts to talk her way out of going with Petra to see her grandfather, since they told her if she were to head somewhere far, she was to take Bernadetta with her. Byleth is not amused when she tries to talk her way out. One of the rare times Byleth will not put up with Bernadetta's excuses.
    • Byleth does this in their Supports with Hilda when she tries to weasel her way out of fighting on the frontlines, much to her chagrin.
    • When various students tell Byleth their problems, in dialogue or in the note box, you can choose to sympathize or to tell them to suck it up. Which one is the right choice depends on the student and the problem.
  • Rags to Royalty:
    • Despite starting out as a humble mercenary under their father, most routes have them in a position of power by the end. On Verdant Wind and Silver Snow, they're the divinely-inspired new King/Queen of the newly-united Fódlan (with a female Byleth potentially also being Almyra's Queen if she marries Claude), while on Azure Moon, they're formally made the new Archbishop of the Church of Seiros, although a female Byleth can become Dimitri's Queen Consort if paired with him. Crimson Flower is the only exception - while a Byleth of either gender can marry Edelgard and be her consort, as well as some paired endings such as with Linhardt, and Ferdinand, mentioning Byleth retires in luxury and a noble title, most endings involve Byleth retiring to a peaceful and humble lifestyle with their spouse or in their solo ending, continuing their war with the Agarthans.
    • Inverted if a female Byleth gets a paired ending with Felix on a non-Azure Moon route as the ending text strongly implies that she eventually returns to her life as a mercenary together with Felix after abdicating the throne.
  • Recurring Element:
    • Byleth is the customizable player character and the primary protagonist, making them a combination of the typical Avatar and Lord characters.
    • In Three Hopes, they serve as the Lu Bu-type figure as an unrelenting force of a warrior who absolutely should not be messed with.
  • Red Baron: Called the "Ashen Demon". Dialogue from Hanneman reveals that Byleth got this nickname from their time as a mercenary, being renowned for defeating enemies without so much as a hint of emotion on their face. In Three Hopes it's revealed in Expedition dialogue with Shez that the "Ashen" portion of their nickname comes from their ash-colored clothing, though they don't particularly get why.
  • Red Herring: Downplayed. The game quickly establishes that Byleth's Crest of Flames is unique in that the only other person to possess this crest was Nemesis, who is the first and only known person to bear the Crest of Flames until Byleth came to be. In the Golden Deer route, Claude even hypothesizes that Byleth may be a descendant of Nemesis despite there being no records of Nemesis ever having any children. This line of thinking is dropped early on as it becomes clear Byleth's possession of the Crest of Flames has less to do with Nemesis and more with their connection to Sothis, the Progenitor God and the Crest's source.
  • The Red Mage: They are primarily a sword fighter, but as the Enlightened One they also specialize in white magic and their black magic isn't that bad either.
  • Rei Ayanami Expy: Both versions of Byleth fall under most of the criteria of one. Byleth has pale skin, short dark teal/light green hair (after merging with Sothis) and is implied to be in their early twenties. Byleth's backstory is also rather tragic as their mother died shortly after childbirth and they were raised by their father Jeralt to be a mercenary from an early age. Byleth is somewhat taciturn and is also noted to be very stoic and emotionless by numerous characters but becomes more emotional over the course of the story. Additionally, Byleth is revealed to be a Crest-bearer, possessing an incredibly rare Crest of Flames which allows them to wield the Sword of the Creator. Furthermore, on every route Byleth ends up developing a strong connection with one of the lords (Claude, Dimitri, Edelgard, Rhea) which can develop into a romantic relationship.
  • Religious and Mythological Theme Naming: Byleth is Johann Weyer's original spelling of the demon slightly better known as Beleth, a king of Hell in demonology. Fitting for a Black Knight, though somewhat ironic for someone sharing a body with a goddess. The Japanese version uses the more familiar "Beleth" spelling. Sharing a name with a king of hell become more fitting in the Crimson Flower route. Turning against Rhea (while not exactly a god, is a dragon, which are considered deities in Fire Emblem) also convinces a majority of students and members of the church to rebel with them, which mirrors Lucifer's defiance of God and subsequent fall from heaven, taking a number of angels along with him. While it is Edelgard who leads the rebellion, Byleth is the one who Rhea prized the most among her people, and the one whose betrayal she takes the most personally. Fittingly this ties with Edelgard's devil looking armor in the timeskip.
  • Rescue Romance: With each of the lords, should one be S-supported, as they meet when Byleth saves them from a bandit attack at the beginning of the game.
  • Revenge Before Reason: When Jeralt is killed by Kronya, a grieving Byleth swears revenge on her and her mysterious organization. After a lead on them is found, Rhea warns Byleth against doing anything reckless but allows them to deploy. During the battle in the Sealed Forest, Byleth runs right into a trap set by Solon, to the exasperation of Sothis.
  • Revenge by Proxy: If the player kills Jeralt in Three Hopes, Byleth will retaliate by killing either Randolph, Rodrigue or Judith depending on the route.
  • Reverse Grip: If equipped with a sword, they tend to hold it in an icepick grip. Male Byleth's pose in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate also has him holding the Sword of the Creator in this fashion.
  • The Rival: To Shez, the player character of Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes, though Shez is the one more invested in their rivalry, with Byleth barely acknowledging their presence. If successfully recruited, the rivalry is all but gone due to Shez giving it up almost entirely.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge:
    • Chapter 10 gives them the chance to fulfill their wish to kill Kronya in retaliation for murdering Jeralt and go on a killing spree, slaughtering anyone unlucky enough to stand between them, their class, and Kronya.
    • In Three Hopes, Byleth goes on another rampage after Shez kills Jeralt, even taking out one of the chosen Lord's closest allies (Rodrigue, Randolph, or Judith) in retaliation before trying to kill Shez.
  • Rogue Protagonist: In Three Hopes due to Shez taking their place in the narrative as the three Lords' Number Two, remaining a mercenary with Jeralt as a result. Jeralt's Mercenaries, and by extension Byleth, are eventually hired by whatever faction opposes Shez and the chosen Lord, putting the two at odds.
  • Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: Though a bit more downplayed than most. As they were raised by their mercenary father on the road, Byleth has excellent, well-rounded combat skills and leadership instincts at the start of the game. But because they've never known a life beyond that of a mercenary's and because Jeralt kept the Church at a distance due to his distrust of both it and Rhea until they're roped into service after rescuing the three lords at Remire, they are shockingly naïve about the state of Fódlan and the role of the Church. Even their route's lord has to help them learn how to effectively teach in the early goings.
  • Satan Is Good: Byleth is named after a demon king from demonology, and even goes by the nickname "The Ashen Demon." Despite this, they are The Hero, and are never shown to be outright evil, even in Three Hopes, where they take on a more antagonistic role.
  • Secret Art:
    • Ruptured Heaven is the Sword of the Creator's combat art, which can only be used by Byleth, which deals 7 extra damage, increases hit and critical by 10, can be attacked at 1 to 2 range, deal bonus damage based on their magic, and deal effective damage against dragons. Upon becoming the Sublime Creator Sword, it becomes Sublime Heaven, which improve the damage by 3 and critical by 10.
    • Since Byleth is the only playable unit to obtain the Sacred Power ability upon mastering Enlightened One, which increases damage dealt by 3 and decreases damage taken by 3 to adjacent allies, this is their exclusive ability.
  • Sensei-chan: Male or female, although Byleth is a teacher, they are treated as more or less like a peer of the students due to their closeness in age. In the Japanese version, the students and faculty of Garreg Mach almost exclusively refer to them as "sensei" no matter the relationship.
  • Sexy Mentor: Both Byleths are noted in-universe as being considered attractive by the students and faculty alike.
  • She Is the King: Played for Laughs during Flayn's S-rank. Since male Byleth inherited Sothis' power, doesn't that technically make him a male goddess?
  • Shock and Awe: Byleth learns the Thunder spell upon reaching D+ in Reason, although it's the only thunder magic they learn.
  • Significant Birth Date: They share the same birthday as Sothis no matter what the player chooses. However, the entry in Jeralt's diary where he discusses his wife's death and Byleth's successive birth is dated the 20th of the Horsebow Moon (9/20), year 1159, regardless of what you've chosen for Byleth's birthday.
  • Spanner in the Works:
    • They blunder into the Flame Emperor's attempted assassination of Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude, save their skins, and kickstart their involvement in the plot.
    • In all routes, their presence derails the plans of those who slither in the dark, with the exact amount varying depending on the route.
    • Amusingly, Byleth is a spanner for everybody by the sheer virtue that they're probably the only character who doesn't have any works for spanners to fall into.
  • Spell Blade: In Three Hopes, their unique classes (Silverheart and Enlightened One) allow them to infuse their sword with fire, electricity or light.
  • Stern Teacher: Often perceived as this by their students, due to their stoic nature.
  • The Stoic:
    • They generally come across as very emotionless. It's explicitly stated in Female Byleth's Forging Bonds event in Heroes that people have told her she lacks emotions ever since she was young because of how hard she is to read. Only a few, like her father and some mercenaries, can discern what's past her expressionless face.
    • Various characters note that Byleth has a very flat and monotone expression and response to most of the topics and situations they're involved in, leading to several characters questioning their nature and actions because of it. Dimitri on the Azure Moon route even admits that he assumed Byleth had no care for their class at first. Deconstructed in that other characters find their lack of emotion so unnatural that they're concerned for Byleth as a person, and Jeralt's journal talks about how Byleth as a baby never cried, something he notes is not right. Averted later, as Byleth begins to develop a healthy amount of emotions and reactions, and Jeralt even notes Byleth is happier around the students, showing that the lack of emotion gradually falls away.
    • Anger is one of the few emotions they can freely express, such as towards Kronya after she murders Jeralt, and a Crest Scholar accusing Marianne of being the Wandering Beast by telling the latter to Get Out!.
  • The Strategist: They're considered the finest tactician in Fódlan by the time of the war, and even Edelgard and Hubert admit that Byleth's tactical acumen far exceeds theirs.
  • Straight Gay: A male Byleth can romance other male characters (Jeritza, Linhardt, and Yuri) but does not display any gay stereotypes in his behavior.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: The Cindered Shadows DLC includes a CG that shows their mother in person. While both Byleths clearly inherited more of their looks from Sitri than Jeralt, female Byleth in particular is practically her spitting image.
  • Suddenly Speaking: They actually speak when S-supporting with Annette or Dedue, textbox and all, instead of the usual silent dialogue options. Three Hopes gives Byleth fully voice acted dialogue.
  • Supporting Protagonist: Byleth's status as the lead generally downplays itself during the second half of the game, although the degree it goes down depends on the route. The only route where they're still the lead is the Silver Snow route, as it involves them (and the rest of the Black Eagles who aren't Hubert) rejecting Edelgard's invasion and designs for the continent at large. On this route, since Byleth is not bound to any of the three countries, they're more directly aligned with the Church of Seiros, and the story follows Byleth and whichever allies they've made trying to stop the Empire's invasion and repair the damage they've done.
    • On the Azure Moon route, Byleth isn't played up as The Chosen One like past avatars; Dimitri is. The plot heavily focuses on him coming to terms with his trauma and mental illness to become a heroic savior who frees his people and ends the war. Byleth's role is to simply help him on the journey.
    • On the Verdant Wind route, Byleth's status as the Church's divinely empowered Archbishop is crucial to Claude's plans to dragging Fódlan into a new era of openness; Claude's the one mainly calling the shots diplomatically and strategically.
    • On the Crimson Flower route, it's Edelgard's ideals and ambitions for Fódlan's future that drive the plot, and Byleth mostly exists as an enforcer and Morality Chain. And incidentally, this is the only route in which Byleth doesn't end the story in some position of leadership. In Azure Moon, Rhea steps down and Byleth becomes the Archbishop of the church, and in Silver Snow and Verdant Wind, Byleth becomes the leader of the united Fódlan (with Claude returning to his home country in the latter). In Crimson Flower, Byleth ends the story as Edelgard's right hand; Yuri refers to Byleth as "the emperor's favored subject".
  • Symbiotic Possession: Rhea intended to use Byleth's body as a vessel for Sothis's soul to escape from its Soul Jar, but Byleth had their own soul and it ended up a mix of this trope and Sharing a Body, with Byleth having control over the body. On most routes, Rhea comes to accept Sothis' death and Byleth's individuality, while on the Crimson Flower route, she outright calls Byleth a failure for siding with Edelgard, refusing to believe her mother would side against her, and it becomes personal between the two.
  • Tarot Motifs: Byleth of either gender represents the World Arcana, represented in-universe by the Crest of Flames and can represent possibilities and successful conclusions. This represents the fact that Byleth, as the Author Avatar, can choose any house and that whichever house Byleth chose at first will be the army that wins the war by the end.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: After the timeskip, Byleth will be able to hook up with their former students.
  • Terse Talker: When they "speak" in Three Houses, their dialogue is usually pretty succinct. In Three Hopes when given fully voiced dialogue, they still get right to the point.
  • This Was His True Form: In Three Hopes, if Shez succeeds in killing them, their body glows green before reverting back to their pre-Enlightened One state.
  • Time Master: Thanks to receiving power from Sothis, they have a limited ability to manipulate time, such as being able to stop and even turn it back. However, they can only turn back time so far, it's possible to interrupt them, and while time is stopped, they can't move either, though they are free mentally to assess the situation in order to plan out what they're going to do next when they release it.
  • Time Stands Still: In Three Hopes, the Divine Pulse is shown to freeze time allowing Byleth to move and attack freely with damage accumulating until the pulse either runs out or turned off manually, making it one of the most powerful character skills in the game. When shown from the perspective of other characters, it seems like Byleth is teleporting and instantly killing their opponents to terrifying effect. For Shez at least though, the actual moment of contact during an attack is perceivable and happens in movable time, allowing them to dodge with their Super-Speed and warping abilities or at least react enough to avoid some damage.
  • Tomboy with a Girly Streak: A female Byleth is this as she is a stoic mercenary but she can wear feminine clothes (with most of her outfits incorporating the color pink) and engage in stereotypically feminine activities like cooking and hosting tea parties.
  • Tragic Keepsake:
    • The only thing left of their mother is a ring, which their father intends to give to them someday, to share with someone they love. In their S support ranks, they invariably do just that.
    • In Three Hopes Chapter 10 (Chapter 12 in Azure Gleam), Jeralt gives them his sword back during his time as a Captain with the Knights of Seiros. The sword turns into this if Shez kills Jeralt, and worse still, Shez shatters it during their final confrontation.
  • Unable to Cry: From birth, Byleth as a baby was unable to cry, and that worried Jeralt. Only when Jeralt dies does Byleth shed tears for him.
  • Unknown Rival: To Shez, a mercenary on an opposing faction. Byleth defeated Shez in battle and decided to kill them, but in a timeline where Shez survived, Shez trained for a year straight to have a rematch with Byleth.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: Byleth can quickly have their weapon aptitudes surpassed by their students, as they gain skill experience every week while Byleth doesn't (especially at first, when their Professor Level is low), and is notably harder to raise their aptitudes as a result. In addition, trying to recruit every playable character in the game can quickly turn them into a Master of None throughout Part I if you branch out into the skills required to appeal to the students. However, they have the highest base stats in the game, and is tied for 3rd highest growth rate with Claude.
  • Vague Age: Unlike most other recruitable characters that have canon ages, Byleth's age is listed as "??". However, going by how Byleth was born around the time that Jeralt left the Knights of Seiros, it can be summarized that they're at the very least 20-21 years old when the game starts. The students do note that Byleth isn't that much older than them, just to hammer down how young they are. Jeralt's journal reveals that their real birthdate is the 20th of the Horsebow Moon (September 20th) in 1159. Datamining reveals that these are the defaults set in the game code as well, but their default age is given as 21 instead of 20. It becomes more complicated post-timeskip since Byleth hasn't aged due to Sothis's fusion, and depending on how the coma worked, time may have not passed for them at all. Cindered Shadows states that Byleth is around 21 at the start of the game: Sitri, Byleth's mother, is stated to have died 21 years before the DLC begins.
  • Vengeance Feels Empty: Subtly implied. Byleth manages to confront Kronya, who killed Byleth's father Jeralt, but is drawn into a trap that forces Sothis to fuse with Byleth to save them. In the following chapter, the monastery BGM remains as the melancholy "Broken Routine," implying Byleth is unsatisfied with the outcome, and on the Blue Lions route, Dimitri will remark that he and the others "took little satisfaction" from getting revenge.
  • The Voiceless: As the Avatar in Three Houses, aside from in-battle and level up quotes, their lines aren't voiced. As an antagonist (and possible ally) in Three Hopes, their lines are voiced.
  • The Watson: While they are an experienced mercenary, they are an outsider to the political and religious workings of Fódlan. This allows the lord character to explain such things to them, and by extension the player.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: As the main character in Three Houses, the game ends if Byleth dies, since the lord characters are useless without their Living Emotional Crutch (for Dimitri and Edelgard) or motivator (for Claude). It's implied in Silver Snow that the lord characters need Byleth as their main tactician as well; in this route, none of them have Byleth's assistance at the Battle of Gronder Field, and all of them fight so ineffectively that the "winners" are just those who barely survived.
  • What Beautiful Eyes!: During her A-Support dialogue, Rhea swoons over Byleth's newly-changed green hair and "beautiful shining eyes". Though the implications are certainly romantic, Rhea is actually drawn to them because they are clear signs that Byleth is becoming a Child of the Goddess and thus a more suitable host for Sothis.
  • When She Smiles: Due to their status as The Stoic, when they do smile, it will be commented on or acknowledged in some way; Dimitri even describes Byleth's smile as "mesmerizing."
  • Whip Sword: Their weapon, the Sword of the Creator, can transform into a giant chain whip for ranged attacks.
  • Workaholic: Implied. Several supports have characters admonishing them for working too hard, even students who work too hard themselves.
  • Would Hurt a Child: On the Azure Moon route, they kill the teenaged Fleche without a hint of hesitation or regret, after she mortally wounds Rodrigue in an attempt to kill Dimitri in revenge for her brother's death.
  • Wrong Side All Along: In the Black Eagles route, siding with the Empire over the Church effectively means deciding this trope is in play in regards to Rhea and the Flame Emperor, which is enforced further to a degree as an interview noted that Three Houses' worldbuilding favors Silver Snow's lore as a result of serving as the template of sorts for the other paths.
  • You Are in Command Now: On all routes other than Crimson Flower, with Rhea out of action for nearly all of Part II, the members of the Church of Seiros defer to Byleth's leadership.
  • You Killed My Father:
    • In Three Houses, after Kronya murders Jeralt, Byleth jumps at the chance to gut her in revenge and blunders right into a trap. Getting out costs Sothis her individuality.
    • In Three Hopes, if Shez manages to kill Jeralt, Byleth will respond by killing Randolph, Rodrigue, or Judith depending on the route, and Sothis cites it as the main reason why they're trying to kill Shez in their final confrontation.
  • Young Conqueror: On the Silver Snow and Verdant Wind routes, Byleth ends up conquering the Empire, and with the Kingdom and Alliance in no state to govern themselves and desiring Byleth's leadership, ends up uniting all of Fódlan under their rule. Special mention goes to the Verdant Wind route, where Byleth and Claude eventually plan to unite Fódlan with neighboring countries; should you achieve S-rank support with Claude, he even returns to save Fódlan from a resurgence of Imperial and Agarthan remnants and apparently marries Byleth, effectively uniting the two regions as one.


Video Example(s):


The Ashen Demon

Byleth Eisner, renowned as the Ashen Demon for their skill on the battlefield and lack of emotion, single-handedly decimates Berling's Mercenaries and demonstrates why Shez wasn't in Three Houses, who can barely scratch them. For the rest of Three Hopes, your best option is to simply not fight them.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (17 votes)

Example of:

Main / CurbStompBattle

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