Avatar Wiki


11,754pages on
this wiki
128px-Padlock-olive.svg Featured Fire Nation emblem
Biographical information
Alternative name(s)

Noriko (identity given to her by the Mother of Faces)


Hira'a, Fire Nation


Fire Nation


38 in The Search trilogy[2]


64 AG[2]

Physical description


Eye color


Hair color

Dark brown

Skin color


Personal information
Love interest(s)
  • Ikem (husband)
  • Ozai (husband; separated)

Zuko, Azula, Iroh, Ozai (formerly), Lu Ten, Roku, Ta Min, Ikem, Kiyi, Jinzuk and Rina, Team Avatar


Azulon, Ozai

Chronological and political information
  • Herbalist
  • Theater actress (formerly)
  • Former Fire Nation traitor (amnestied by Fire Lord Zuko)
  • Princess of the Fire Nation (formerly)
First appearance

"Zuko Alone" (flashback only)

Voiced by

Jen Cohn

Ursa was the wife of Ozai and later Ikem, mother of Zuko, Azula, and Kiyi,[3] daughter of Jinzuk and Rina, and granddaughter of Avatar Roku and Ta Min. She was a kind, caring, and loving mother to her children, though Azula believed she favored Zuko over her.

Ursa grew up in the Fire Nation village of Hira'a until, as a descendant of Roku, she was forced by Fire Lord Azulon to marry Ozai in order to fulfill a prophecy that would bring great power to Azulon's lineage. When she learned years later that the Fire Lord had ordered her husband to murder Zuko and that he intended to go through with it, she ensured her son's life was spared, but was subsequently banished from the Fire Nation Capital for treason.[4] She returned to her home town, where she rekindled her relationship with her old boyfriend, Ikem. In order to lead a normal life again, she requested that the Mother of Faces grant her an entirely new face and identity while also wiping all of her memories relating to her life with Ozai as a Fire Nation princess. As Noriko, she had another daughter, Kiyi, though after her two elder children tracked her down, she encountered the Mother of Faces again and decided to have the spirit restore her old face and memories.[3] Zuko subsequently revoked her banishment and welcomed her back to the capital for a visit with her family.[5]


Leaving her loved ones

Ursa and Ikem

Ursa and Ikem confirmed their engagement with a passionate kiss.

Ursa was born in 64 AG to Jinzuk and Rina in the small Fire Nation town of Hira'a. From an early age, she was close friends with a boy named Ikem. Though she would tease him when they were younger, they became a happy couple as they grew up.

At twenty-one, Ursa auditioned for the role of Dragon Empress in the local production of Love amongst the Dragons. She went to tell Ikem that she had received the role and found him rehearsing his lines on an empty stage during the day. Upon Ikem's request, they rehearsed a scene of the play in which they would have to kiss on stage, but Ursa expressed her dissatisfaction with "masked kissing", as the props stood in the way. Once she had taken off her mask, Ikem startled her with an unnerving stare; Ursa questioned him about it and he promptly proposed. Ursa, after some slight confusion, happily accepted, and they sealed their engagement with a passionate kiss.

Later at night, she gleefully made her way home to tell her mother of Ikem's proposal, but she found her mother crying over Avatar Roku's headpiece. When she inquired as to what was going on and where her father was, her mother told her that he was in the greenhouse with a visitor. However, before Ursa left the room, her mother emphasized that she loved her no matter what happened.

Ursa crying

Ursa tearfully bid Ikem farewell to ensure his safety.

Upon entering the greenhouse, Ursa discovered that the guests about whom her mother had been talking were Fire Lord Azulon and his son, Prince Ozai. The Fire Lord complimented her beauty before mentioning a prophecy made by the Fire Sages that ensured a powerful lineage of rulers to come forth from a marital union between a descendant of Avatar Roku and his own bloodline. Ozai subsequently proposed to Ursa, and she, without a choice in the matter, agreed. As Ursa was leaving town with her betrothed, Ikem blocked the carriage's path. She pleaded with Ozai to order his soldiers to stop, calling the prince "[her] love". He complied, and she stepped out from the carriage and told Ikem to go home. Despite his begging, Ursa told him that her decision could not be undone, as Ozai's proposal had brought honor to her family. She made clear to Ikem that marrying Ozai was what she truly wanted and, with tears in her eyes, told him once more to go home, knowing that it was the only way to ensure his safety. She subsequently left a devastated Ikem by the side of the road.

Life as Fire Princess

Ozai and Ursa's wedding

Ursa and Ozai's wedding.

During his wedding celebration, Ozai informed Ursa that she should tell her parents that they had always been good to her, revealing that she could no longer have ties with her former life after the event. Thus, she was forced to bid her parents farewell, and started her new life as a Princess of the Fire Nation.[6]

Following her marriage, Ursa gave birth to Prince Zuko, and two years later, to Princess Azula. On a family trip to Ember Island, Zuko nearly drowned in his attempt to assist a turtle crab. After Ozai rescued him, Ursa comforted Zuko by holding him while he recovered from his experience.[7]

However, even after the birth of her two children, she was unwilling to forget the loved ones she had left behind and wrote to them frequently. She employed a palace servant, Elua, to send secret letters to her loved ones in Hira'a, causing Ursa to view her as part of her family, and was eternally grateful for Elua's services. However, unbeknownst to Ursa, none of her letters made it to their destination as Elua had betrayed her trust and filed the notes away on the orders of Prince Ozai.

Ursa and Zuko

Ursa and Zuko.

Ursa eventually became suspicious of the fact that Ozai had intercepted and read her letters, and came up with a plan to trick him into admitting it: she wrote a fake letter to Ikem in which she stated him to be Zuko's real father.[3] Months later, Ozai confronted her with his knowledge of the letter, stating that her actions were treasonous to the crown of the Fire Nation. Ursa was initially furious to learn that her suspicions of Ozai were correct, but quickly burst into tears when Ozai revealed that he had taken measures to kill Ikem.[4] Ursa demanded to know why Ozai had done so, since they both knew Zuko was really Ozai's son, and Ozai responded by asking her why she had written the false letter in the first place. Ursa told him her original plan, and that part of her motivation was that she wished Zuko was not Ozai's son. As an act of vengeance, Ozai stated that, from that point onward, he would treat Zuko as if Ursa's desire had been reality.[3]

Ursa's deal

In order to save Zuko, Ursa made a deal with Ozai, providing him with an untraceable poison to murder his father.

Later one night, Ursa found her children squabbling over something. Curious, she pulled Azula aside to get the full story and found out that Ozai asked Fire Lord Azulon to pass Iroh's birthright of the throne to him now that Lu Ten had died in the Siege of Ba Sing Se. As punishment for his insolence, Ozai was tasked by an infuriated Azulon to feel the pain of losing a firstborn by killing his own. Shocked by this information, Ursa sent Azula off to bed and went to find her husband. After Ozai declared that he had every intention of going through with his orders, Ursa made a deal with him: the throne for Zuko's life. Ozai accepted her offer on the added condition that she was to leave the palace after having concocted the untraceable color- and odorless poison, as he feared that she would otherwise slip it to him as well. Ursa tried to negotiate that she would leave with her children, but was forced to leave on her own lest they would all be hunted down and killed by Ozai.

Ursa hugs Zuko

Ursa comforted Zuko just before her disappearance.

Ursa crafted the poison and handed it to Ozai before making her way to the rooms of her children to say her goodbyes. She kissed a sleeping Azula on the cheek, before moving on to Zuko and waking the young prince. She reminded him of her true, strong motherly love and told him to always remember who he was, no matter how things seemed to change. She subsequently pulled the hood of her cape over her head, and walked away into the shadows.[1] She left the palace on a boat, heading back toward Hira'a.[4]

Life as Noriko

Arriving in Hira'a in the middle of the night, Ursa went to her parents' old house to visit them. However, a little girl opened the door instead and informed her, unaware of who she was, that Jinzuk and Rina had both passed away years prior. Saddened and with nowhere to go, Ursa retreated to the theater stage in the middle of the town and cried to herself in silence. Noren came up to her, believing that she was looking for a part in the next play, but after realizing how sad the former Fire Nation princess was, he invited her to breakfast, something Ursa gladly accepted.[4]

Ursa becomes Noriko

Ursa received her new face and identity from the Mother of Faces, becoming Noriko in the process.

As Ursa ate her breakfast, she conversed with Noren, when suddenly, Noren mentioned her name while Ursa was certain she was yet to introduce herself. An awkward Ursa lost her appetite and prepared to leave, when Noren admitted he is actually Ikem, her ex-fiancé. Ikem revealed that he had encountered the Mother of Faces, who had altered his face. Ursa deduced that Ozai was unsuccessful in finding and killing Ikem because he changed his face and identity. Ikem offered Ursa a chance to make up for their lost time as lovers: to have Ursa have her face be changed as well to continue their love. The couple went to Forgetful Valley and waited for the next season to come to meet the Mother of Faces. The Mother of Faces did arrive, but was puzzled by Ursa's decision to change her face, despite her obvious beauty. To test her sincerity, the spirit offered the former princess a new, much plainer face, which Ursa accepted without hesitation. Sensing Ursa's pain, the Mother of Faces also asked her if she would want a new mind that didn't remember her old life. After much deliberation, Ursa agreed to forget her past life, even it meant for her to forget the children she left back in the palace. With a new face and identity, Ursa, who knew herself as "Noriko", married Noren and had one child, Kiyi.[3] "Noriko" was living peacefully with her family in Hira'a until the arrival of a disguised Team Avatar in 102 AG.

Noren and Noriko

"Noriko" remembers hearing that Ursa once returned to Hira'a, looking for Ikem.

Noriko questioned Aang and Katara on whether they were thinking about marriage, but upon seeing their reactions, quickly withdrew her inquiry. Noren interrupted their conversation, and, claiming to believe Sokka's cover story about them being drama historians, informed the group that Ursa was the acting troupe's most famous member, but that she was taken to the Fire Nation Capital. When Zuko inquired about Ikem, Noren relayed to them that Ikem was Ursa's boyfriend, but after Ursa was taken, he left, with Noriko adding that he was believed to have run off to Forgetful Valley, a dangerous forest near the town. She informed them that Ursa apparently returned to Hira'a years later, looking for Ikem, and subsequently traveled to Forgetful Valley to find him, though Noren questioned the accuracy of his wife's statement.[4]

Azula threatening Ursa

As Azula threatened to kill her, Ursa apologized to her first daughter for not having been a better mother, despite not remembering.

The next night, Zuko returned to the house upon learning the truth about Noriko actually being Ursa. When Zuko was about to leave, Noren stopped him and told his wife the truth about her identity. Azula appeared in the house wanting to kill her and questioning if Kiyi was a replacement for her. Noriko's response was that if she was indeed her mother, her only fault was not loving her enough. After Zuko defeated Azula and she ran off, the Mother of Faces appeared, asking her if she wanted to regain her former memories, which she agreed to. The next day she apologized to Zuko and told him the truth about the letter. Zuko forgave her and Ursa decided to share her past with her son.[3]

Return to the Fire Nation Capital

A short time after reuniting with her son, Zuko arranged for Ursa and her family to sail back toward the Fire Nation Capital for the first time since Ozai banished her. When Zuko announced that they were nearing the main island, she was pleased to notice that he still had that sparkle in his eyes like when he was little whenever he got excited. As she lovingly brushed the side of his head, an embarrassed Zuko shied away from her ministrations, deeming them to be unfitting for a Fire Lord, prompting Ursa to apologize. As Zuko left her to go check up on his friends, Ikem approached Ursa and asked her if she was okay, explaining that her hands always grew cold whenever she was scared. Noting that it had just been a long time since she had been in "that place", Ursa assured her husband that she would be fine. Upon noticing Aang and Kiyi riding a flying dolphin fish, she panicked and yelled for her daughter to come back, ignoring Katara's reassuring statement that Kiyi was safe with Aang. When the Avatar instantly brought Kiyi back on board, Ursa pulled her into a tight hug, saying that she could not lose her too, though her daughter rebelled against her embrace, yelling to be let go. As Ikem took Kiyi below deck on the girl's request, Ursa forlornly agreed with her son that Kiyi needed time to adjust to her changed face. When Aang apologized for having worried her, she promptly dismissed him, noting that she should be the one apologizing for overreacting before excusing herself and walking to the side of the ship to look out over the water.

Later on, Ursa was out on the boat, a tear rolling down her face. She was approached by Zuko asking if she was okay. Though startled by his appearance, she answered that she was fine. She asked him if Aang, Katara and Sokka had left. After Zuko said yes, she said he was lucky to have "such good friends". Once again, Zuko asked if she was okay and she replied she just needed fresh air. Zuko thought she was upset abut Kiyi, though Ursa admitted that she was thinking about Azula and asked her son if he thought she was safe, warm, and happy. Zuko recalled how he spent weeks looking for her in Forgetful Valley without finding her, which meant Azula did not want to be found. He believed her to be safe as he knew she would survive, though he did not know what "happy" was for Azula. Ursa told her son they should not be dour right before returning to the capital and that it would be wonderful to see him in his element. As Zuko took her hand to thank her, he found it was cold and began to take her below deck. However, a messenger hawk carrying a message from the Kyoshi warriors appeared, and after seeing her son's angered face, Ursa asked if something was wrong but was assured that it was nothing he could not handle. Before she went below the deck, Zuko promised to keep her family, especially Kiyi, safe with all his power.

The next morning, while on deck with her family, Ursa looked through a telescope and noticed they were not at Harbor City. She was informed by Zuko that there had been a change of plans, and a submarine appeared, out of which Iroh and Suki emerged. As Iroh apologized for the pain his family had caused her, Ursa readily embraced him and said he did not need to apologize as his presence had always given her hope.

As they arrived at the palace, Ursa was hesitant to enter the Great Hall for the first time since her exile. She declined Zuko's offer to stay in her old bedroom, saying that one of the guest rooms would suffice. Upon walking through the palace, she tried to reassure herself that she and Kiyi were perfectly safe as Zuko was now in charge and that Ozai was no longer there. However, she was slightly startled when she stumbled upon Ozai's painting in the Royal Gallery.[8]


Little Zuko and Ursa

Ursa cared for her children greatly.

One of Ursa's defining features was her strong motherly love and protectiveness of her only son, Zuko, and her life was dedicated to safeguarding him from any harm. She would resort to any means necessary to keep her son safe, even going so far as to give Ozai a vial of poison, aware that he would use it to kill Fire Lord Azulon and take the throne.[4]

She was also a pragmatist, as she chose to leave Ikem behind in order to protect him and later accepted banishment in order to save Zuko. Despite her love and affection for her children, she opted to forget their existence at one point in order to find inner peace once she reunited with Ikem. Ultimately, she came to regret this decision, realizing that Zuko and Azula were her true family.[3]

Though she does show a fun side, as she playfully frightened Ikem and teased him in their younger years.[6]

Her relationship with her eldest daughter, Azula, however, was strained by the fact that the young princess was emotionally abusive toward everyone else in the family, especially her older brother, Zuko. She was forced to discipline Azula on a regular basis, but it was apparent to her that her daughter's cruelty was beyond a normal level.[1] In turn, Azula believed that Ursa thought of her as a monster,[9] which scarred the princess for the rest of her life and may have influenced some of her later behavior.[10] Despite their strained relationship, Ursa cared about her daughter's well-being, as she wondered, teary-eyed, if Azula was safe, warm, or happy after having learned that she had vanished in the Forgetful Valley.

In contrast, the relationship Ursa has with her youngest daughter, Kiyi, is very loving and caring, as well as over-protective, as she panicked when she saw Kiyi riding a flying dolphin fish, being fearful of "losing her too".[8]

Because of their different personalities, Ozai and Ursa slowly grew apart. This partially shaped the lives of their children, as each of them was, at least in their eyes, favored by a different parent.


Ursa making poison

Ursa created an untraceable poison to give to Ozai.

Ursa was taught a great deal about many medicinal herbs and poisons from her mother, a master herbalist. After she accepted Ozai's marriage proposal, she was not known to practice the skill, and it remained unknown to the prince until Zuko's life became endangered, and she offered her skill to Ozai. She used her knowledge of herbs and medicine to create a powerful colorless and odorless poison that was completely untraceable.[4]


Main article: Fire Nation Royal Family
Ta Min
Lu Ten


Avatar: The Last Airbender

Book Two: Earth (土)

Book Three: Fire (火)

Graphic novel trilogies


  • Ursa never appeared in the present timeline of the television series. Her story was told in flashbacks and later via comics.
  • During the 2008 San Diego Comic-con, it was announced that a reunion between Ursa and Zuko had been arranged and made into a storyboard by director Joaquim Dos Santos, but was later dropped just before the finale was finished at the request of show co-creator Michael Dante DiMartino for reasons unknown.[12]
  • Ironically, the last thing Ursa told Zuko before leaving was to never forget who he was, but she herself forgot who she was for years.
  • Ozai had Ursa watched for months prior to their arranged marriage, which allowed him to immediately know that her letter to Ikem claiming Zuko as their son was false.[3]
  • Ursa is one of two known characters in the Avatar franchise to have had children with two different men, the other being Toph Beifong.
  • Ursa is the only known person to have been in more than one marriage.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Ehasz, Elizabeth Welch (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (May 12, 2006). "Zuko Alone". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 7. Nickelodeon.
  2. 2.0 2.1 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Library Edition (February 5, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part 3 (October 30, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part 2 (July 10, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
  5. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Rift Part 1 (March 5, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
  6. 6.0 6.1 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part 1 (March 20, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
  7. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Promise Part 2 (May 30, 2012), Dark Horse Comics.
  8. 8.0 8.1 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). Smoke and Shadow Part 1 (September 23, 2015), Dark Horse Comics.
  9. Mattila, Katie (writer) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (October 19, 2007). "The Beach". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 5. Nickelodeon.
  10. DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (July 19, 2008). "Sozin's Comet, Part 3: Into the Inferno". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 20. Nickelodeon.
  11. Joshua Hamilton on the DVD commentary for "The Coronation".
  12. Acastus (2008-07-26). SDCC 2008 Con Report. AvatarSpirit.Net. Retrieved on August 22, 2011.

Start a Discussion Discussions about Ursa

  • Ursa's Treasonous Deal + 2 Questions

    7 messages
    • SaitamaBro wrote:There's one thing i don't remember. Do we actually see Azulon telling Ozai to kill Zuko? I only remember Azula saying it and U...
    • Watch "Zuko Alone".
  • Ursa's position/status in the Fire Nation

    8 messages
    • DrachenRitter42 wrote:I see Ursa potentially being in a sort of a "Queen Mother" type position, due to the fact that she is the mother of ...
    • Fair enough - my bad. Anyway, I was referring to the mother of the current one, the wife of George VI, who was referred to by the title "Qu...

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki