Earth Kingdom emblem

The Beifong family is a powerful and very influential Earth Kingdom noble family seated in Zaofu and Republic City. Originally based in the town of Gaoling, the Beifongs were renown for their wealth and good connections with other noble families like the Pang and Yum Soon Han families.[1][2][nb 1] To date, the family, whose symbol is a flying boar,[1] is well respected and has great credibility in the Earth Kingdom.[3]

Important and influential members of the family include the co-founder of the Earthen Fire Refinery, Lao Beifong;[4] his only daughter, Toph, a renowned earthbending master and the inventor of metalbending; her two daughters, Lin and Suyin, the Chief of Police in Republic City and matriarch of the city of Zaofu, respectively;[5] and Baatar Jr., second-in-command of the military of the Earth Empire.[6]


The Beifong family lived in Gaoling, a town located within a mountain range in the southern Earth Kingdom.[1] Following the death of Avatar Kuruk in 312 BG, Lu Beifong took a leading role in the search for the next Avatar. Despite his efforts, the usual Earth Kingdom method to identify Kuruk's successor failed.[7]

By the end of the Hundred Year War, the family consisted of only three: Lao Beifong, his wife, Poppy, and their blind daughter, Toph. Lao and Poppy believed that Toph's blindness made her fragile, docile, and incapable of looking after herself, and thus sheltered her from others. As a result of these protective measures, no one outside of the family, besides Master Yu, knew she even existed. Toph, resenting her parents' treatment, grew up to become tough, confrontational, and rebellious.[1]

Beifong estate

The Beifong family lived in a mansion in Gaoling.

At the age of six, Toph ran away from home into a cave inhabited by badgermoles. These creatures were the first earthbenders and, according to Toph, she understood them and they understood her because they were both blind. She learned earthbending by imitating their movements and learned to "see" by using earthbending to detect minute vibrations through the ground with her bare feet.[8] Although her father, Lao Beifong, later hired earthbending master Yu to instruct her, he did not teach her anything other than "basic forms and breathing exercises", unaware that she had already become very powerful. She became such a powerful bender that she secretly entered underground earthbending tournaments as "The Blind Bandit" and was the champion of Earth Rumble VI.

After she was defeated by Aang in the final stage of the tournament, he and his friends went to her house to request Toph be the Avatar's earthbending teacher. She refused at first in order to keep her parents ignorant of her earthbending prowess, but that night Aang and Toph were kidnapped and held for ransom by Xin Fu and the other competitors from Earth Rumble VI. This resulted in Toph using her earthbending in front of her father in order to defeat the kidnappers and save Aang. Toph asked about teaching Aang earthbending, but her parents did not give their consent, opting instead to put their daughter under an even more stringent, twenty-four hour watch.[1]

That night, Toph escaped with Aang, Katara, and Sokka, lying to them, saying that her parents had changed their minds. Lao and Poppy Beifong, thinking that the Avatar had kidnapped their daughter, hired Xin Fu and Master Yu to get their daughter back,[1] an endeavor in which they did not succeed.[9] Toph eventually contacted her family again on her own through means of a letter which she wrote with Katara's help and sent to them using Sokka's messenger hawk, Hawky.[10]

After Xin Fu and Yu gave up their search, Poppy greatly chastised Lao for the loss of their daughter, leading him to cast himself out. After the war, Lao partnered with a Fire Nation businessman, Loban, to set up a factory on Earth Kingdom land rich in natural resources.[11] This factory, the Earthen Fire Refinery, became the world's first international business venture and also employed both benders and nonbenders.[4]

In addition, Toph created a metalbending academy using her family name.[12] This institution became popular due to the students' intervention at the battle for Yu Dao and it was soon in need of expansion.[4]

In 120 AG, Toph gave birth to a child, Lin, who became a metalbender like her mother. Lin kept her mother's last name and was identified as Chief Beifong during all of her days working in the police force of Republic City. Six years later, she had another daughter, Suyin, who also trained as a metalbender but was more rebellious than Lin, her half-sister. Following a bitter incident between her daughters, Toph sent Suyin to live with her grandparents.[13] At the age of sixteen, Suyin left to travel the world, eventually deciding to settle down and start a family. She purchased a plot of Earth Kingdom land and founded the metal city of Zaofu, hiring an architect, Baatar, who later became her husband. Together, they had five children: Baatar Jr., Huan, Opal, Wei, and Wing. Toph would visit Zaofu from time to time before later traveling the world in search of enlightenment, eventually settling down in the Foggy Swamp.[5][14]

As a result of the Red Lotus causing anarchy in the Earth Kingdom, Baatar Jr. joined Zaofu's former guard captain, Kuvira, to reunite the kingdom by force, resulting in an estrangement from his mother, who believed it was a power grab. In the intervening three years, Baatar Jr. and Kuvira got engaged.[6][15]


Toph's family document

Toph used the Beifong family document in order to secure four tickets for the Earth Kingdom ferry.

The Beifong family is influential and greatly respected in the Earth Kingdom, as indicated by Toph's ability to use the family seal in gaining passage for herself and her friends on the ferry at Full Moon Bay.[16] Their wealth had been displayed when they offered gold to the bounty hunters to hunt down their daughter.[1] The documents read "土國頭等護照 北方拓芙", meaning "Earth Kingdom First Class Passport - Toph Beifong". Their influence did not appear to extend to the Upper Ring of Ba Sing Se, as the documents did not grant Toph and Katara access to Bosco's party.[2]

After the Hundred Year War, the Beifong family, primarily due to Toph, and eventually, her descendants' accomplishments, was respected for its contribution to the innovation of their nation's bending art, such as seismic sense and more importantly, the invention of metalbending. Lin followed the footsteps of her mother in the police force, while Suyin single-handedly built an entire city out of metal.

The Beifong family had such a good standard in the Earth Kingdom, that the name demanded respect and credibility. President Raiko and Tenzin attempted to use this to their advantage to convince Suyin to restore order in the kingdom, though she declined.[3]

Family tree

Baatar Jr.


  • In Mandarin Chinese, the pinyin or phonetic pronunciation for "Beifong" (北方) is "bĕifāng". However, in Cantonese, the "a" is pronounced like an "o".
  • The Beifong residence resembles a siheyuan (四合院), a Chinese walled residence compound.
  • It is said that Hawky found a new home with the Beifongs at their estate.[17]


  1. Considering the circumstances in which she mentioned them, Toph may have fabricated these families' existences solely to intimidate the guards who tried to keep her and Katara from entering the Earth Kingdom Royal Palace.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (May 5, 2006). "The Blind Bandit". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 6. Nickelodeon.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hedrick, Tim (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (September 22, 2006). "City of Walls and Secrets". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 14. Nickelodeon.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (October 31, 2014). "Enemy at the Gates". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 18.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Rift Part One (March 5, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
  5. 5.0 5.1 DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & Heck, Colin (director). (July 11, 2014). "The Metal Clan". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 5. Nickelodeon.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Heck, Colin (director). (October 3, 2014). "After All These Years". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 14.
  7. The Rise of Kyoshi, Chapter 1, The Test.
  8. O'Bryan, John (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (July 15, 2008). "The Firebending Masters". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 13. Nickelodeon.
  9. DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (December 1, 2006). "The Guru". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 19. Nickelodeon.
  10. Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (November 2, 2007). "The Runaway". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 7. Nickelodeon.
  11. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Rift Part Three (November 5, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
  12. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Promise Part One (January 25, 2012), Dark Horse Comics.
  13. Mattila, Katie (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (July 18, 2014). "Old Wounds". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 6. Nickelodeon.
  14. DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (October 10, 2014). "Korra Alone". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 15.
  15. Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Zwyer, Melchior (director). (October 17, 2014). "The Coronation". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 16.
  16. DiMartino, Michael Dante, Hamilton, Joshua (writers) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (September 15, 2006). "The Serpent's Pass". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 12. Nickelodeon.
  17. From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on (link). No longer updated, encyclopedia now broken though archived here.

Start a Discussion Discussions about Beifong family

  • Just who is Kanto

    8 messages
    • I,for one, like this theory. I mean whose to say it wasn't The Duke. Also Toph may be ambitious, but she's not stupid she wouldn...
    • Based on the reveal?  It seems pretty clear that Kanto was an ex-boyfriend, not a one-night stand.  Toph fairly clearly held him in high reg...
  • Beefing Wealth Inheritance

    2 messages
    • I know 'm way late on this discussion, but, I have to ask if Toph ever inherited the wealth from her parents after their passing?
    • First, you might want to fix that opening line. Second, there's still the interquel comics determining if the Beifongs even stayed...
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