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Avatar Kyoshi was a previous incarnation of the Avatar, born into the Earth Kingdom. She was the Avatar immediately preceding Avatar Roku, 412 years before the start of the series. Kyoshi was a giant of a woman, possessing the largest feet of any Avatar, and lived to be 230 years old, also giving her the title of oldest Avatar. Her traditional weapons were golden metal fans which, in addition to her manner of dress and style of fighting, were adopted by the young warrior women of Kyoshi Island, her homeland.

Unlike her successor, Roku, and the current Avatar, Aang, Kyoshi was determined that only true justice could bring peace, and had no qualms about possibly killing enemies to achieve this goal. She was thus a generally effective Avatar. However, Kyoshi was the founder of the Dai Li, a decision she deeply regrets.

HistoryEdit

Early LifeEdit

Not much is known about Kyoshi's early life other than she was born in the year 312BSC on a peninsula that would one day become Kyoshi Island.

History with Chin the ConquerorEdit

"In my day, Chin the Conqueror threatened to throw the world out of balance. I stopped him, and the world entered a great era of peace." - Kyoshi

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During Kyoshi's life, the current Earth King's rule was unpopular among many people of the Earth Kingdom. Using this to his advantage, a warlord named Chin (also known as Chin the Conqueror, according to Kyoshi) launched a war to conqueror the continent. He was successful until he reached the peninsula where Kyoshi lived. When he refused to listen to Kyoshi and her people, she confronted him and separated the peninsula from the mainland through a combination of all four elements, forming Kyoshi Island to protect her people from subsequent threats. An indignant Chin was left standing on the edge of a cliff, which then crumbled beneath his feet. Chin fell into the sea, where he drowned. Chin's death ushered the world into a great era of peace.

Because of Kyoshi's act, the people of Chin Village on the mainland founded Avatar Day to vilify Kyoshi and all the other Avatars after her for the death of their leader. The people of Kyoshi Island, meanwhile, founded "Kyoshi Day" to honor how she created the island. They also erected a large totem, topped with a statue of Kyoshi.

History with the 46th Earth KingEdit

"How dare YOU defy your Avatar!" - Kyoshi to the Earth King

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Some time after her confrontation with Chin, Kyoshi was summoned to Ba Sing Se at the request of the Earth King. His unpopular rule had caused a peasant revolt in the city. By the time Kyoshi got there, the peasants had already destroyed anything that represented the "old government", including ancient and valuable historical and cultural artifacts. The King demanded that she stop it by whatever means necessary. Kyoshi staunchly refused, stating that it wouldn't be right for her to do so. Incensed by her defiance, the Earth King ordered that she be arrested, but a display of her power and a warning caused him to agree to a compromise. The Earth King agreed to give the peasants a voice in his ruling, while Kyoshi in turn agreed to protect Ba Sing Se's cultural heritage from further disruption. She trained a platoon of elite Earthbenders who would later come to be known as the Dai Li, though their subsequent corruption weighed heavily on Kyoshi's mind afterward.

To see the clip detailing this story go to Escape from the Spirit World Page.

Appearances throughout Aang's LifeEdit

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Avatar Kyoshi made several cameo appearances throughout Books 1 and 2, the first of which was as a statue in "The Warriors of Kyoshi". She thereafter appears in a vision in "The Avatar State" as the most recent Earthbending Avatar when Avatar Roku is explaining the nature of the Avatar State to Aang. Kyoshi makes her first speaking appearance in "Avatar Day" when she manifests herself through Aang (like Roku had in "Winter Solstice Part 2: Avatar Roku") to testify in a trial proving the Avatar's innocence (though she confessed to killing Chin during her "testimony").

In "Sozin's Comet, Part 2: The Old Masters" Aang summons Kyoshi's spirit, hoping that she could advise him on how to defeat Ozai without killing him. Kyoshi reminds him that her forceful ending of Chin the Conqueror's war for dominance brought a great era of peace. Aang points out that she didn't actually kill him, and that Chin's own arrogance got him killed. Kyoshi says she sees no difference in this, and tells him that she would have done anything she had to do to stop Chin. Aang regrets consulting Kyoshi on this complex matter after hearing this.

TriviaEdit

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  • On the golden button on the right arm guard of the Kyoshi Warriors and on the fan that the statue of Avatar Kyoshi holds to her face is the word 京. The other fan, the one on her outstretched arm, is the word 士. In Japanese, 京士 is pronounced as 'kyōshi' and translate as 'capital samurai.' However, on the mural in Avatar Day, her name appears as 虛子 (Kyoshi in Japanese, a near-homophone with 京士, but with a shorter 'o' sound). Kyoshi (虛子) is a proper name in Japanese, as for example the poet Takahama Kyoshi (高浜 虚子 ,Takahama Kyoshi?, 22 February 1874–8 April 1959).
  • In the Episode "The Southern Air Temple," Kyoshi is seen to the right on the painting in the Earth Kingdom's Avatar Temple. Strangely, the statue that preceds Roku's statue in the Southern Air Temple isn't Kyoshi's.
  • Avatar Kyoshi lived to be 230 years old, making her the longest living Avatar in history. She also had the largest feet of any Avatar.
  • In a chibi comic Kyoshi is a gym teacher.


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